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dmos

Deep Sandbox (for Zargabad)

Should Deep Sand integrate ACE or stay vanilla compatible?  

85 members have voted

  1. 1. Should Deep Sand integrate ACE or stay vanilla compatible?

    • ACE!
      36
    • Vanilla!
      51


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Update 5 just uploaded. Download from first post.

Improved overall dynamism. Stashes more unique. Your main weapon is one of two versions of Mk16 (I'm not randomizing your starting weapon on purpose so that you wouldn't be too effective at the distance at the start or after respawning; urges you to search for another weapon). Improved the random weather, time mechanism -- should yield more pleasant results. Increased stashes number to 27 including the 2 marked by radars. Increased stashes number because as it seems they're not that easy to find

Hope you enjoy it

-dmos

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dmos,

You're welcome for the ideas! Hey, it can only be to my benefit to throw as much crap as I can at you, and hope that all of it sticks! I just hope for your sake that you're wearing goggles and air tight nose-plugs! :D

Y'know, you're a sneaky one, because I suspected that you were deliberately "short changing" the player on the equipment to force us to think more tactically with our AI buddies. The first thing I do after I make my first kill is scavenge for frag grenades, and due to the circumstances, I just can't go charging in... So, it's slow 'n' go with my comrades, which is really aggravating (in a good way, sort of) because I feel quite limited and "naked" without frags, so I badly want the frags that are waiting and tempting me, but if I just barrel in to go get them, odds are pretty high I'll be dead in a heartbeat. So the whole "temptation" aspect of every first kill, after every respawn is sort of fun, but nerve wracking the whole time.

I hope that you don't mind if I make another push at my initial suggestion of giving the player a reward for first-aiding a friendly, and here's why... I'm a teacher, and as every professor of eduction ever taught me, and as every hard-earned experience has ever demonstrated to me, the worst way to motivate a person is to threaten or punish them, which, in technical jargon, is referred to as a "reactionary response." What works farbetter is to motivate a person with rewards that are earned, which in technical jargon, is referred to as being "proactive." If your desire is to direct the player to operate in a certain fashion, then the odds are much higher that you'll get that response out of them if it's setup in a proactive, rather than in a reactive fashion. Again, I'm not simply quoting this stuff out of a high-minded textbook, but I've made a ton of mistakes in my early years of teaching due to being overly reactive, and I learned the hard way that being proactive pays off BIG time, with a dramatic reduction in stress, which, in turn, further motivates the student/player to keep participating in future interactions. Now when I say a "reduction in stress," that doesn't mean that there's going to be any reduction in combat-induced stress (which we don't want to lose), but rather the kind of stress that takes the player out of the game, because they dislike/hate a design element. And if a player is becoming aware of a design element, then they're losing immersion, which is always a bad thing. So, be as positive and proactive as possible while avoiding the negative and reactionary as much as possible.

And reactionary responses have a bad habit of doubling up very quickly. What I mean by that is that the loss of a teammate is already a profound and inescapable negative. Nothing can reverse it, so, to then whack the player's account of something that's been achieved? That seems really harsh to me. The point of giving the $7 is that it strongly TEMPTS the player to rush out and go aide that guy, perhaps even when he shouldn't. Here, the proactive method actually heightens the combat stress, but in a good (meaning "immersive") way. I feel that too often, friendly AI aren't valued as deeply as they should be. But in this case, a proactive design approach ADDS value to them in a positive fashion. This also doesn't make the player notice the design element if an AI buddy gets immediately killed, without there ever having been an opportunity to save him. But the player WILL be looking for every opportunity possible to save that wounded comrade, whenever the situation allows.

I'd like to also suggest that if civilians are included, that if one has been wounded by an OPFOR, that saving one of their lives reduces the size of the next spawned group of enemies by two. If they were wounded by BLUFOR rounds, then saving their lives will "just" prevent the next group of enemy respawns to have any extra units in their ranks. Again, simulating how one's interactions with the local populace will definitely impact on the field of combat.

In terms of potential rewards that a player could earn, I'd like to suggest that a number of them revolve around the all too humble IR strobe. After so many dollars, the player will gain a radio option, where he can call in for a certain type of support that will be directed to wherever the IR strobe is placed/thrown. After the call is made, the player will have 15 seconds to throw/place the strobe, or otherwise the support request is automatically called off (I would make the reward be RESET, and not lost). I'd make the vehicle response time fairly quick. Not as ridiculously quick as in CoD:MW, but perhaps there would be a 15-30 second delay before the craft would be within operable range. A request could be for an Apache, A-10, or F-15 E for CAS (perhaps the type of the CAS is earnable?), or an earth shaking mortar/artillery strike, or a couple of Littlebirds drop off some SF into the area who then proceed to the strobe, and then afterward do a patrol around it till they're eliminated, or an emergency evac via a Black Hawk to a base that will allow the player get rekitted, and then select an MRAP MaxxPro, or a Stryker, or a Bradley to drive them back into battle with? The possible rewards just centered on the usage of the strobe are pretty much endless. What I like about using the probe is that it ties the player to the area, so tactical thinking will still be paramount.

And, "Wow!" I had no idea that there were more equipment caches than the ones by the radar towers! I'm going to have to keep my eyes even more open than they are. I must've overlooked a score of them already!

I'm happy that you liked most of my suggestions. But you're the designer behind this VERY worthy endeavor, so of course it's up to you to prioritize what can/can't be done, and what order any new elements should be sequenced.

That said...

In regards to checkpoints, I accidentally badly misspoke. What I intended to say were armed sandbag fortifications, with M2s/PKs present, maybe MK19s, that sort of thing. Of course these sites would be a "natural" location for equipment caches.

In terms of potential other small arms systems to make available to the player, then I'm mostly talking about RH's fantastic work, particularly his M14s and HK416s. I'd also badly like to see some tricked out AKs available as well, since it's not too hard to find photos of troops, particularly SF, who use them in the field. The advantage of doing this is obvious, as one's guaranteed of never running out of ammo, since it would be scavenged from the fallen OPFOR. I haven't installed an AK mods yet to see/test which ones are the best, so I can't give any recommendations for those yet. But as to RH's M14s and HK416s, I have their class names below for you:

In this pack are these types :

M21

M14's

M1SE1's

Socom II's

class names:

"RH_m14"

"RH_m14acog"

"RH_m14aim"

"RH_m14eot"

"RH_m21"

"RH_sc2"

"RH_sc2acog"

"RH_sc2aim"

"RH_sc2eot"

"RH_sc2shd"

"RH_sc2sp"

"RH_m1s"

"RH_m1sacog"

"RH_m1saim"

"RH_m1seot"

"RH_m1sshd"

"RH_m1ssp"

"RH_m1st"

"RH_m1stacog"

"RH_m1staim"

"RH_m1steot"

"RH_m1stshd"

"RH_m1stsp"

Ammo:

uses BIS 20Rnd_762x51_DMR

In general, I'd lean more to the SOCOM enhanced ones, along with anything that approaches the Mk 14 EBR.

And finally, the HK416s:

In this pack are these types :

Hk416

Hk416 AG36 gl

Hk416 Aimpoint

Hk416 Acog

Hk416 Acog AG36 gl

Hk416 SD

Hk416 Aimpoint SD

Hk416 Cqb

Hk416 Cqb M203

Hk416 Cqb Aimpoint

Hk416 Cqb Acog

Hk416 Cqb Aimpoint M203

Hk416 Cqb Acog M203

CTAR 21

and more

class names:

"RH_hk416"

"RH_hk416aim"

"RH_hk416acog"

"RH_hk416eotech"

"RH_hk416sd"

"RH_hk416sdaim"

"RH_hk416sdeotech"

"RH_hk416gl"

"RH_hk416glaim"

"RH_hk416glacog"

"RH_hk416glaeotech"

"RH_hk416sdgl"

"RH_hk416sdglaim"

"RH_hk416sdgleotech"

"RH_hk416s"

"RH_hk416saim"

"RH_hk416seotech"

"RH_hk416sacog"

"RH_hk416sgl"

"RH_hk416sglaim"

"RH_hk416sgleotech"

"RH_hk416sglacog"

"RH_ctar21"

"RH_ctar21m"

"RH_ctar21glacog"

"RH_ctar21mgl"

"RH_star21"

"RH_hk417"

"RH_hk417aim"

"RH_hk417acog"

"RH_hk417eotech"

"RH_hk417sp"

"RH_hk417sd"

"RH_hk417sdaim"

"RH_hk417sdacog"

"RH_hk417sdeotech"

"RH_hk417sdsp"

"RH_hk417s"

"RH_hk417saim"

"RH_hk417sacog"

"RH_hk417seotech"

"RH_hk417sgl"

"RH_hk417sglaim"

"RH_hk417sglacog"

"RH_hk417sgleotech"

"RH_acr"

"RH_acracog"

"RH_acraim"

"RH_acreotech"

"RH_acrgl"

"RH_acrglacog"

"RH_acrglaim"

"RH_acrgleotech"

"RH_acrb"

"RH_acrbacog"

"RH_acrbaim"

"RH_acrbeotech"

"RH_acrbgl"

"RH_acrbglacog"

"RH_acrbglaim"

"RH_acrbgleotech"

"RH_mas"

"RH_masacog"

"RH_masaim"

"RH_maseotech"

"RH_masb"

"RH_masbacog"

"RH_masbaim"

"RH_masbeotech"

"RH_massd"

"RH_massdacog"

"RH_massdaim"

"RH_massdeotech"

"RH_masbsd"

"RH_masbsdacog"

"RH_masbsdaim"

"RH_masbsdeotech"

"RH_m27"

"RH_m27acog"

"RH_m27aim"

"RH_m27eotech"

"RH_m27c"

"RH_m27cacog"

"RH_m27caim"

"RH_m27ceotech"

Ammo:

uses BIS 30Rnd_556x45_Stanag or for sd versions 30Rnd_556x45_StanagSD and for gl 1Rnd_HE_M203,

FlareWhite_M203 , FlareGreen_M203 , FlareRed_M203 ,FlareYellow_M203

IAR's - can also use Cmag - 100Rnd_556x45_BetaCMag

Hk417 uses - RH_20Rnd_762x51_hk417 or 20Rnd_762x51_DMR, for sd versions RH_20Rnd_762x51_SD_hk417 and for ELGM 1Rnd_HE_M203

And add a M32 grenade launcher, perhaps as an earned reward.

That's "it" for now. I've got to get back to my Human Geography course.

Thanks again for your work, and I'm looking forward to trying out your latest release! :bounce3:

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Update 5 just uploaded. Download from first post.

Improved overall dynamism. Stashes more unique. Your main weapon is one of two versions of Mk16 (I'm not randomizing your starting weapon on purpose so that you wouldn't be too effective at the distance at the start or after respawning; urges you to search for another weapon). Improved the random weather, time mechanism -- should yield more pleasant results. Increased stashes number to 27 including the 2 marked by radars. Increased stashes number because as it seems they're not that easy to find

Hope you enjoy it

-dmos

Nice one! I am about 80% through converting this for a bigger island (using Malden and then will do Duala). I have a quick question though. I have put it in a spoiler so it does not potentialy give things away...

I have already increased the number of stashes for bigger islands. I was a little confused about the noStash markers - looking at your code it seems these are spots where you do not want a stash within 200m. Is this correct?

Also, I am moving the weapon/unit arrays to the init and declaring them in a global variable. This way they are not built every time - might help with performance on the bigger maps. Ultimately it would be nice for the user to be able to pick the units that will be used as the unit pool maybe.

Not doing too much to support ACE - the wounding/healing system you have in place will probably clash with ACE WOUNDS anyway. Also the UPS script tends to do something weird to ACE wounds and I have never been able to get to the bottom of it.

Lastly, I think that the way you have clock.sqf call itself every time may be causing a memory leak (while the mission is running memory usage goes up, and up and up! I was doing some testing last night but it got too late - I will do more later this afternoon...

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Nice one! I am about 80% through converting this for a bigger island (using Malden and then will do Duala).

Jedra,

I am VERY excited to hear about your plans for Duala. The latest version of the island is a FANTASTIC setting.

Are you planning on using the units that were also developed for that island (?), as their quality is right at the very top as well. I feel that it would be a shame not to use them.

I'd still like the player's team to be American, but it would be extremely immersive to have the locals (the Afrenians) assisting the U.S. forces, and to have the main body of the OPFOR made up by the Molatians. It would be very interesting to see some high priced mercenaries show up in support of the Molatians, perhaps carrying high-end small arms/gear that we don't usually encounter, such as a mix from the FFAA weapons pack http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=6748 and from RH's SMG pack http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=13788. This would add some variety, and certainly keep things interesting!

Yeah, that would be something to see!

And just throwing this out as well. daveygarys' released some amazing looking Ranger units, which can be found here: http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=14295 They're still in beta state, so I don't know if there'd be any issues with using them as the player's initial fireteam.

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Jedra,

I am VERY excited to hear about your plans for Duala. The latest version of the island is a FANTASTIC setting.

Are you planning on using the units that were also developed for that island (?), as their quality is right at the very top as well. I feel that it would be a shame not to use them.

I'd still like the player's team to be American, but it would be extremely immersive to have the locals (the Afrenians) assisting the U.S. forces, and to have the main body of the OPFOR made up by the Molatians. It would be very interesting to see some high priced mercenaries show up in support of the Molatians, perhaps carrying high-end small arms/gear that we don't usually encounter, such as a mix from the FFAA weapons pack http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=6748 and from RH's SMG pack http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=13788. This would add some variety, and certainly keep things interesting!

Yeah, that would be something to see!

And just throwing this out as well. daveygarys' released some amazing looking Ranger units, which can be found here: http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=14295 They're still in beta state, so I don't know if there'd be any issues with using them as the player's initial fireteam.

If I do the Duala one, I will use the units that Icebreakr put together for it. I am actually 50% of the way through a campaign for Duala, but this will be a couple of months away from release. As for the 'good guys' the Afrenian army is officially backed by the UN, but I would probably use other units to support them if/when I do 'deep sandbox'.

As for Malden - I am actually using the Rangers you mentioned in the 'deep sandbox' conversion along with a few other units (which will be optional). Due to the size of the Island, I am running into a few performance problems, so it may be a couple more days before I give it to dmos. I have of course banished the Iranian Army and have instead gone for Russians (supported by Russian Special Forces).

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Looking good Dmos, the improvements are great :D.

BTW maybe a short breifing would be good, just a few quick notes saying some of the stuff you said in your first post, about the objective being to survive and the stash system etc.

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dmos,

You're welcome for the ideas! Hey, it can only be to my benefit to throw as much crap as I can at you, and hope that all of it sticks! I just hope for your sake that you're wearing goggles and air tight nose-plugs! :D

Y'know, you're a sneaky one, because I suspected that you were deliberately "short changing" the player on the equipment to force us to think more tactically with our AI buddies. The first thing I do after I make my first kill is scavenge for frag grenades, and due to the circumstances, I just can't go charging in... So, it's slow 'n' go with my comrades, which is really aggravating (in a good way, sort of) because I feel quite limited and "naked" without frags, so I badly want the frags that are waiting and tempting me, but if I just barrel in to go get them, odds are pretty high I'll be dead in a heartbeat. So the whole "temptation" aspect of every first kill, after every respawn is sort of fun, but nerve wracking the whole time.

I hope that you don't mind if I make another push at my initial suggestion of giving the player a reward for first-aiding a friendly, and here's why... I'm a teacher, and as every professor of eduction ever taught me, and as every hard-earned experience has ever demonstrated to me, the worst way to motivate a person is to threaten or punish them, which, in technical jargon, is referred to as a "reactionary response." What works farbetter is to motivate a person with rewards that are earned, which in technical jargon, is referred to as being "proactive." If your desire is to direct the player to operate in a certain fashion, then the odds are much higher that you'll get that response out of them if it's setup in a proactive, rather than in a reactive fashion. Again, I'm not simply quoting this stuff out of a high-minded textbook, but I've made a ton of mistakes in my early years of teaching due to being overly reactive, and I learned the hard way that being proactive pays off BIG time, with a dramatic reduction in stress, which, in turn, further motivates the student/player to keep participating in future interactions. Now when I say a "reduction in stress," that doesn't mean that there's going to be any reduction in combat-induced stress (which we don't want to lose), but rather the kind of stress that takes the player out of the game, because they dislike/hate a design element. And if a player is becoming aware of a design element, then they're losing immersion, which is always a bad thing. So, be as positive and proactive as possible while avoiding the negative and reactionary as much as possible.

And reactionary responses have a bad habit of doubling up very quickly. What I mean by that is that the loss of a teammate is already a profound and inescapable negative. Nothing can reverse it, so, to then whack the player's account of something that's been achieved? That seems really harsh to me. The point of giving the $7 is that it strongly TEMPTS the player to rush out and go aide that guy, perhaps even when he shouldn't. Here, the proactive method actually heightens the combat stress, but in a good (meaning "immersive") way. I feel that too often, friendly AI aren't valued as deeply as they should be. But in this case, a proactive design approach ADDS value to them in a positive fashion. This also doesn't make the player notice the design element if an AI buddy gets immediately killed, without there ever having been an opportunity to save him. But the player WILL be looking for every opportunity possible to save that wounded comrade, whenever the situation allows.

I'd like to also suggest that if civilians are included, that if one has been wounded by an OPFOR, that saving one of their lives reduces the size of the next spawned group of enemies by two. If they were wounded by BLUFOR rounds, then saving their lives will "just" prevent the next group of enemy respawns to have any extra units in their ranks. Again, simulating how one's interactions with the local populace will definitely impact on the field of combat.

In terms of potential rewards that a player could earn, I'd like to suggest that a number of them revolve around the all too humble IR strobe. After so many dollars, the player will gain a radio option, where he can call in for a certain type of support that will be directed to wherever the IR strobe is placed/thrown. After the call is made, the player will have 15 seconds to throw/place the strobe, or otherwise the support request is automatically called off (I would make the reward be RESET, and not lost). I'd make the vehicle response time fairly quick. Not as ridiculously quick as in CoD:MW, but perhaps there would be a 15-30 second delay before the craft would be within operable range. A request could be for an Apache, A-10, or F-15 E for CAS (perhaps the type of the CAS is earnable?), or an earth shaking mortar/artillery strike, or a couple of Littlebirds drop off some SF into the area who then proceed to the strobe, and then afterward do a patrol around it till they're eliminated, or an emergency evac via a Black Hawk to a base that will allow the player get rekitted, and then select an MRAP MaxxPro, or a Stryker, or a Bradley to drive them back into battle with? The possible rewards just centered on the usage of the strobe are pretty much endless. What I like about using the probe is that it ties the player to the area, so tactical thinking will still be paramount.

And, "Wow!" I had no idea that there were more equipment caches than the ones by the radar towers! I'm going to have to keep my eyes even more open than they are. I must've overlooked a score of them already!

I'm happy that you liked most of my suggestions. But you're the designer behind this VERY worthy endeavor, so of course it's up to you to prioritize what can/can't be done, and what order any new elements should be sequenced.

That said...

In regards to checkpoints, I accidentally badly misspoke. What I intended to say were armed sandbag fortifications, with M2s/PKs present, maybe MK19s, that sort of thing. Of course these sites would be a "natural" location for equipment caches.

In terms of potential other small arms systems to make available to the player, then I'm mostly talking about RH's fantastic work, particularly his M14s and HK416s. I'd also badly like to see some tricked out AKs available as well, since it's not too hard to find photos of troops, particularly SF, who use them in the field. The advantage of doing this is obvious, as one's guaranteed of never running out of ammo, since it would be scavenged from the fallen OPFOR. I haven't installed an AK mods yet to see/test which ones are the best, so I can't give any recommendations for those yet. But as to RH's M14s and HK416s, I have their class names below for you:

In general, I'd lean more to the SOCOM enhanced ones, along with anything that approaches the Mk 14 EBR.

And finally, the HK416s:

And add a M32 grenade launcher, perhaps as an earned reward.

That's "it" for now. I've got to get back to my Human Geography course.

Thanks again for your work, and I'm looking forward to trying out your latest release! :bounce3:

Kyle,

thanks alot for your feedback ;) I really appreciate it. Your argument on proactive vs reactive really got me thinking, but I guess I disagree with a couple of your points or premises.

First off I completely agree that proactive is the way to go when we're talking about education. It helps establish a stress free environment and leads to high performance. However, you did not acknowledge or didnt stress the fact that the proactive approach is very artificial in the sense that it side steps the way people usually approach/accept/deal with failure. Excuse the drama but I think that unless I'm trying to simulate a class room I should avoid it.

I'm not interested in encouraging high performance. In fact performance doesn't matter to me at all. And neither do I want to teach or encourage something. What I am interested in is inducing a sense of fragility, danger, importance of decisions and their irreversibility. Above all fragility. And since I'm not interested about performance or education/teaching, I think "reactive response" is exactly the way to go. I think it's great in creating a hostile environment, which again is exactly what I want. I hope this shines some light on my goals.

Concerning your CAS suggestion mine is very much in that direction ;) though higher up my priorities is Air Drops and Elite Paratroopers.

Also thanks for suggesting those weapons ;) I just have to figure out how to make the mission tell whether you have specific mods running or not. I'm reinventing the wheel here :)

Also M32 can be a good tactical asset, but it's way too easy to go rambo on AI's ass with it so I'll try to steer clear of it :)

Liked your armed fortifications idea too :) but that might be hard, because orientation and placement would be very important so the randomization would be very dificult as well.

Thanks again for your suggestions, Kyle! Take care

Cheers

-dmos

---------- Post added at 06:18 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:53 PM ----------

Looking good Dmos, the improvements are great :D.

BTW maybe a short breifing would be good, just a few quick notes saying some of the stuff you said in your first post, about the objective being to survive and the stash system etc.

This might sound weird, but I find that introductions are bad for immersion. The stashes just like any other element in Deep Sand aren't goals. In fact even to survive isn't a goal. I can't make a player care about surviving and trying to force it through goals just makes it worse. This missions rather delivers a simulation which should evoke a sense of realism which in turn the urge to survive. A list of goals and rules, I find, is bad for that. However maybe it's a good idea to stress in the first post that in this mission you don't have a mission. I might just want to phrase it better. Anyway thanks for your suggestion

Cheers

-dmos

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I have of course banished the Iranian Army and have instead gone for Russians (supported by Russian Special Forces).
Yes, that indeed sounds like a much better combination, especially when on considers the environment one is in. I've had some decent performance with Malden myself, but ever since I installed it and all of its required addons, I've been experiencing unusual CTDs when playing dmos' Sandbox mission. I hate to say it, but I'm very close to uninstalling Malden 2.0 altogether till there's an update for it. That said, you thought that you detected some measure of a memory-loss issue that might be connected to version 3 (?) of the Sandbox mission. I've been too swamped to play since I had the several CTDs, and I haven't even installed build 5 of dmos' work, so maybe it's not an issue anymore? We'll see...

Are you planning on using +SLAYER+'s digital camo mechanized infantry units ( http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=8835&highlight=DIGITAL ), and/or SARMAT Studio's Commando Assault Units ( http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=10427&highlight=AIRBORN )? The reason why I ask is that their quality is topnotch, and it would be nice to see more mission/campaign releases that make use of some of the superb custom unit work that the community produces.

I'm happy to hear that you're going with the default units for Duala. Yup!

dmos, I now understand better where you're coming from on your penalty-based system.

And the M32 is a terribly effective weapon; I can see how it would tilt the game too much in the player's favor to have it in there, but I only bring it up because its presence in ArmA is just about nil.

I didn't think about the orientations of the fighting positions. Even without mounted weapons, that would still be a headache. Forget that I even mentioned it. Debris piles and craters are a big enough task, but at least one doesn't have to worry about orienting them in a decent direction.

And you're planning on air drops and elite Airborne units? Nice!

Everything just keeps sounding better and better!

Edited by Kyle_K_ski

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Needed to take a break from my Human Geography coursework. Man, that is one TOUGH class: layer upon layer of economic, cultural and ethnic data--makes it challenging trying to identify what the correct answer is to a problem!

dmos and Jedra, in case you haven't noticed this yet, it looks like there might be issues with daveygarys' awesome looking Rangers units. I haven't fired up ArmA II in a few days, so I can't say for certain. But Levycore says that they suffer from a "disappearing backpack" once they debark from Black Hawks. More here if you're interested: http://www.armaholic.com/forums.php?m=posts&q=14373&n=last#bottom

If there is an issue, I hope that it's not a serious one, as they'd be perfect for the player and the fireteam, especially since we're able to respawn and then parachute out of the Chinook.

dmos, I'm excited that you got the ammo caches to be "AI-group-friendly," and that the first aid system's been revised to be more comprehensive. I'm grateful for the "thank you's" you made in my direction. Very kind of you. I'm happy to help in whatever capacity I can, and I only wish that I could do more. :)

Oops! Almost forgot to mention, that perhaps another type of object that could be randomly placed without too much concern for orientation are the wrecks of old, broken down, or previously destroyed, vehicles. Those could lend some valuable cover for BLUFOR and OPFOR units.

Also, I think that it would be pretty cool and fun if someday someone ported this mission over to the superbly moody Namalsk map, and had the units present be the STALKER units from here: http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=9795&highlight=STALKER, and mixed in with some of the post-apocalyptic units that have been crafted by the community. I only wish that the STALKER units didn't have the misaligned animation issues with their arms. Still pretty overlookable and forgivable. My only concern with such a porting, is how would one visually identify which units were friendlies and which weren't? Alliances were so fluid in STALKER that players who have had experiences with the excellent series might get a little tripped up by having "static" alliances.

Alright, my break's over. Back to the textbook! :(

Edited by Kyle_K_ski

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Worked out an air drop script for equipment and vehicles and how to check for specific custom content. Now in progress of revamping the mission to automatically include some of the following mods if you're using them (if not you will still be able to play out of the box): RH weapon mods (Kyle's suggestion, thanks again), ACE, new infantry like Russian Desert units (that probably doesnt make much sense but still they sound like an attractive addition), and more. Working on

Also infantry groups won't be mixed anymore – all will be from the same faction. Factions: BAF, FR, DE, PMC (not sure PMC is a good idea), Taki Militia (hostile to blufor), Taki Army, already mentioned RU army. Special Forces will also spawn in separate groups, forming elite squads. SF groups will be relatively rare and they will generally paradrop in.

Brace yourselves, next update will be a big one.

Waiting for suggestion concerning custom weapons, units and maybe vehicles.

Cheers

-dmos

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Wow, dmos, you DID get a LOT done. Congratulations on figuring out how to have a script scan one's mods to see what's available, and then make them accessible in the mission. That's really quite impressive.

In regards to what units to put into the game, I wouldn't hesitate to integrate mercenaries (PMCs). They've become such a dirty side to modern wars that to not have any present would be out of the norm, sad as it is for me to say it (mercs now greatly outnumber official U.S. forces in Iraq). As to whether or not they should be from the official addon, I certainly don't see how that would hurt anything, although I would certainly more strongly urge including the PMC units made by the community first, and for one main reason: if I'm not mistaken, the reviews for the PMC addon weren't the best, and how many actually bought it? The mods look great, and the custom-made PMCs are free to the community.

If you do integrate mercs, I'd suggest using the Praying Mantis PMCs ( http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=8964&highlight=PMC ) for the OPFOR for one main reason: they have a very unified look, and that will help the player distinguish OPFOR PMCs from the BLUFOR PMCs. In my opinion, as awesome as a lot of the community-made PMCs are, the packs that were released generally have a very mixed range of clothing that's worn. Now, from the photos I've seen of real life assemblies of PMCs, this does occur. One guy might be wearing a plaid shirt with his sleeves rolled up, while his buddy's wearing a light gray T-shirt. To have PMCs dressed so dissimilar on BOTH sides would likely be a headache for the player, so, my advice: go with dissimilar PMCs for BLUFOR, and similar PMCs (Praying Mantis) for the OPFOR. SchnapsdroSel's mercs look good, but I really like waterhiro's ones as well, although it annoys me that one of the PMCs has a minigun (take it out if you can) and that another mod's required to have them in game (the L115A3, although I'd suspect that most ArmA II players already have this mod active). waterhiro's great work can be found here: http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=12458&highlight=PMC

I wouldn't hesitate to include the official British forces, but I do hesitate a bit with STALKERGB's British 3 Rifle Infantry units. I've written a few missions with them using the excellent online PlannedAssault utility, but I've had some serious CTDs that resulted. _William, the creator of PlannedAssault, thinks that the issue may lie with a weapon from the weapon pack that's required to use STALKERGB's awesome Brit units. Don't know for certain, but maybe you can identify the issue, and nip it in the bud? The thread where I brought this up is here (scroll down two postings to see _William's response): http://forums.bistudio.com/showpost.php?p=1946533&postcount=216

I like the idea of the unified factions, as it makes a lot of sense from so many different angles, especially in regards to deepening immersion. I hope though, that players will still be able to recruit any friendly that's desired. Is this so? I know that one of the first bodies I'd grab would be a Bundeswehr with a MG3 or a MG4. :)

I'd include the Desert Patrol Vehicle. In my opinion, that set of wheels would prove very valuable for blistering fast hit and run probes. Drive back, take control of most of my forces, and setup a nice ambush.

And before I hit the books again, I'd suggest one more time to offer up tricked out AKs at the ammo caches for those that one want to use them.

Yes indeed, from what you wrote the next release would have to be a large one. Can't wait! Hopefully by then, I'll have enough school work done that I can actually play it!

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I wouldn't hesitate to include the official British forces, but I do hesitate a bit with STALKERGB's British 3 Rifle Infantry units. I've written a few missions with them using the excellent online PlannedAssault utility, but I've had some serious CTDs that resulted. _William, the creator of PlannedAssault, thinks that the issue may lie with a weapon from the weapon pack that's required to use STALKERGB's awesome Brit units. Don't know for certain, but maybe you can identify the issue, and nip it in the bud?

I use these guys a lot (in fact they are in my own version of DS) and have not had any issues with them. They do need the UKForces Weapon pack though, so maybe Planned Assault hasn't got them? I haven't used PA so I don't know what the issue might be there.

In my attempt at making this mission work on a bigger island, I am having to add more things to make it interesting enough for the player. As a result I seem to be moving further and further away from the initial idea! Performance and out of memory errors are still abundant - probably due to the number of units UPSMON is trying to control (which are necessarily larger than in Zargabad) so it may not yet see the light of day! I have to say though, watching the planes dog-fight over Malden is breathtaking - I sometimes find myself just watching them for ages!

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From Jedra:

They do need the UKForces Weapon pack though, so maybe Planned Assault hasn't got them? I haven't used PA so I don't know what the issue might be there.

Ah, I never thought of that. So, maybe PA's causing the issue, and not the units/weapon pack. Hmmm.... I'll probably end up redownloading the pack, just in case something strange occurred during the download as well.

Well, I'm happy to hear that you've had nothing but success with them.

Performance and out of memory errors are still abundant - probably due to the number of units UPSMON is trying to control
Good luck to you working on that. If a working and stable version could be released for Malden that would be sweet. The new Everon looks enticing too, although I haven't had a shot at looking at that in the Editor either.

watching the planes dog-fight over Malden is breathtaking - I sometimes find myself just watching them for ages!

That reminds me of how I feel when one of the deadliest armor units gets produced in Deep Sandbox, the Shilka. Not only does that thing start lighting up the sky, but it just rages around the city like a mad bull, and I'm just busy directing myself and my forces away from it. As deadly as it is, I keep wanting to just watch it due to its hypnotically destructive capabilities.

For myself, a Shilka frightens me more than a T-72 tank.

And I meant to mention this earlier to dmos, but if you do go with the PMCs, just to spice up the battlefield some, I'd equip them with the more exotic small arms (not just the standard 5.56s and 7.62s). I referenced some suggestions to Jedra in regards to this earlier.

By the way, does ArmA II supply functional attack dogs? Like German Shepherds or the like? If so, it would be kind of neat to occasionally see them under the command of OPFOR and BLUFOR units.

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UPDATE 6 OUT! Download from first post or here.

Many new things. Updated first post info so check that (features and changelog). Things that will be implemented very soon: air dropped supplies and probably Special Forces units posing as elite groups.

Kyle, I added support for RH weapon mods as requested - thanks for the idea! Also I highly recommend playing with ACE-X_RU, because then, along side Takistani Army and Militia you'll have Russian Desert infantry (in seperate groups). Weapon caches' content has changed ALOT. Especially if you're using ACE and/or RH mods. Also if you're using any of the RH mods, you will only get those as your starting weapons ;)

BTW, following the Jedra's suggestion I improved some mechanisms, now the mission should run faster on your cpus.

Cheers

-dmos

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Nice - I see you got the config stuff working!!

I think your team switching may be broken. You can switch once and you still get to be leader, but if you switch again you don't - unless you actually pick the person who is now leader. Also this means that you transfer of 'addaction' is also not working.

It seems that the onTeamSwitch trigger only ever fires once (the first time you switch teams). Also it's not this mission - I tried to get it to work in a simple editor mission and I could not. So, because I am butchering all your hard work (!) I had to find another solution...

At the end of the init.sqf I put in a while loop to try and catch when the leader changed...


[] spawn {

   while {true} do {
       Waituntil {leader (group player) != player};
       waituntil {alive player};
       nul = [leader (group player), player] execVM "teamSwitch.sqf";
       (group player) selectLeader player;
   };

};

This calls teamswitch.sqf when the leader changes and does the addaction transfer from the old leader to the new leader (the player).

Maybe its because I run ACE - but I doubt it. Probably just another little BI bug!

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From dmos:

UPDATE 6 OUT! Download from first post or here.

YESSSSSSSSSS!!! :yay:

I just finished my two exams ("Yes," I said two!) and finished submitting my 8 page paper. Now the course isn't yet done, but I have all the work caught up with, which means I'm playing the not so little Sandbox tonight baby! It's been way too long since I've had any fun, so I'm going to relish this. :bounce3:

And the update's timing couldn't have been any better. With service like this, I'm going to be expecting a real frothy beer delivered with the next update. Don't let me down now dmos! :D

I'm so happy to see that Jedra's directed some real concrete yet still virtual help your way. Things can only keep getting better and better.

I'll consider installing ACE, maybe this weekend. I've had it downloaded since a month ago, but can't bring myself, for some reason, to install such a behemoth mod. But I've got to have some fun now, so ACE is going to have to wait.

Alright then, I'm finally on my way to have some tactical stimulation...! :)

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Nice - I see you got the config stuff working!!

I think your team switching may be broken. You can switch once and you still get to be leader, but if you switch again you don't - unless you actually pick the person who is now leader. Also this means that you transfer of 'addaction' is also not working.

It seems that the onTeamSwitch trigger only ever fires once (the first time you switch teams). Also it's not this mission - I tried to get it to work in a simple editor mission and I could not. So, because I am butchering all your hard work (!) I had to find another solution...

At the end of the init.sqf I put in a while loop to try and catch when the leader changed...


[] spawn {

   while {true} do {
       Waituntil {leader (group player) != player};
       waituntil {alive player};
       nul = [leader (group player), player] execVM "teamSwitch.sqf";
       (group player) selectLeader player;
   };

};

This calls teamswitch.sqf when the leader changes and does the addaction transfer from the old leader to the new leader (the player).

Maybe its because I run ACE - but I doubt it. Probably just another little BI bug!

That's strange, it should work just fine. I made it so that the person you teamswitch to would always be the leader; it's a feature not a mistake just to be clear :).

ACE shouldn't have anything to do with it, I use ACE all the time.

What's your OA version? Do you think something in your installation might be outdated?

Last time it worked fine for me, but I'm gonna go check again. If it doesn't work I'll report back, otherwise it might be your game :/

---------- Post added at 06:41 AM ---------- Previous post was at 06:35 AM ----------

I'll consider installing ACE, maybe this weekend. I've had it downloaded since a month ago, but can't bring myself, for some reason, to install such a behemoth mod. But I've got to have some fun now, so ACE is going to have to wait.

I'm happy you got all that work done. Recommend you use ACE, ACEX and ACEX-RU. It will improve your gameplay considerably! It will give you a lot of improvements out of the box, and if you use it with my sandbox it's gonna unlock some (soon more) features as well. Also you don't have configure ACE just make sure you have the right one and that's it, so don't worry about it taking up your time.

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Hi dmos,

It does the same thing in you Zargabad mission. When I put some hints in the onTeamSwitch code they only ever appear once!

It might be that I am running with the latest Beta version of Arma2OA (they have made some massive improvements to the engine by the way). I'll check against the latest official patched version later today.

EDIT - By the way always making the player the leader is a good idea - I hate it when I am not the leader and the AI leader decides that it would be a good idea for a full frontal assault on the Takistani army World War One style!!

Edited by Jedra

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By the way always making the player the leader is a good idea - I hate it when I am not the leader and the AI leader decides that it would be a good idea for a full frontal assault on the Takistani army World War One style!!

Haha amen :D

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Great updates and thanks for adding support of RH-416, M4/M16 and PDW and ACE.

Could you possibly add RH-MK18, RH-M14, RH-MGS, RH-SMG and RH-Pistol pack support :)

Also would it be possible to add a option to be a lone-wolf if say, a player is not in the mood to give commands/orders to the AI?

Thanks

Edited by Dealz

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I was able to play for about an hour last night before the CTD occurred. :(

I've uploaded two 7zip to my MediaFire account, should anyone be brave enough to take on looking through them to see what triggered it.

The first link has ALL of the Saves from the ArmA 2 Other Profiles directory. It weighs in at 15 MB.

http://www.mediafire.com/?lvawgw2fj6gaz4y

The second link has only the LAST save, #6 from the ArmA 2 Other Profiles directory. It weighs in at 2.5 MB. I don't know if there would be any value in supplying the other saves or not, so I made these two reports just in case one wanted to save on the file size.

http://www.mediafire.com/file/m1g65us2rr30pyj/Deep%20Sandbox%20CTD%20report%20-%20Only%20%236%20Save.7z

I'm also supplying the download link to the PlannedAssault CTD report, just in case it might help in identifying what's causing the problem. Perhaps they're related?

http://www.mediafire.com/file/mmg3zqvcf4dmtrc/mission_3_prong_US__UK_v_Rus_1.zip

If I remember correctly, my last save was made after I exited the red car. I'm pretty sure that I accessed the building nearest to the car, and climbed its roof to start engaging the OPFOR. I was up there for but a short time, 30 sec. to a minute at most, before the CTD happened. I'm guessing that there has to be an issue with a particular unit that I didn't encounter till I reached that area, for me to play for as long as I did just to get a CTD event there...

Also, I have never modified a single config file for any of the mods that I've installed. They are all still at their default settings.

I'm bummed that the CTD happened, but up till then I was having a very enjoyable time. Thanks for making that possible.

A few observations:

Why do some corpses disappear, while others don't? It seemed like there was 50/50 chance of the corpses disappearing into the surface. I only attempted to scavenge a handful of corpses, and out of those attempts, two of them had the bodies disappear far too rapidly (seemingly within a couple of minutes of their deaths). I'd up the corpse-removal time to 7 minutes at the minimum, just in case the player's forces are pinned down in a long drawn out firefight, yet need ammo pretty quickly as soon as the sortie's over or an opportunity presents itself during the battle.

When one respawns in the Chinook, is it with one's original team, in the same state that they were in when the player was last alive? I noticed that each time I respawned, that some of the teammates that I had were already injured, and it seemed that the injured units were in the same slots as the original members were. Also, it seemed like if a teammate was dead before I respawned, that I respawned with one less "new" unit. Are my observations correct on this, or...?

The one surviving teammate that I had for the past couple of saves (the one armed with the SAW) was not responsive to my commands to rejoin the formation, even when I made sure that he had a clear line of sight to me. He was injured, yet standing. Normally, if a unit can't comply with a movement/formation command, they give an audio cue that they're unable to follow the order. If his legs were too badly injured to move, he never gave me an audio cue to inform me of it.

I finally found my first ammo crate that wasn't near a radar installation! Yay! I'm so proud of myself! :yay:

Before I go, take a look at these SWEET Halo units! The green ones taste like limes. The red ones taste like cheeries. The blue ones like blueberries. The gray ones like the crud that gets stuck underneath one's big toenails (don't ask how I know this). And the invisible ones taste like invisible (no flavor). http://www.armedassault.info/index.php?cat=news&id=5195&game=1

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Great updates and thanks for adding support of RH-416, M4/M16 and PDW and ACE.

Could you possibly add RH-MK18, RH-M14, RH-MGS, RH-SMG and RH-Pistol pack support :)

Also would it be possible to add a option to be a lone-wolf if say, a player is not in the mood to give commands/orders to the AI?

Thanks

Thanks for suggesting those weapon packs. I'll most likely include them soon :)

And I really want to add the option to play as a lone wolf or just a team of 2, but I can't think of a way to provide configuration for the mission, because I don't want to use dialogs like for example thomsonb did. I'll probably soon provide a settings file together with the unpacked mission, but then you have to play through the mission editor or at least use it to "Export to Single-Player Missions" after setting changes. Any suggestions anyone?

---------- Post added at 05:55 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:38 PM ----------

I was able to play for about an hour last night before the CTD occurred. :(

I've uploaded two 7zip to my MediaFire account, should anyone be brave enough to take on looking through them to see what triggered it.

The first link has ALL of the Saves from the ArmA 2 Other Profiles directory. It weighs in at 15 MB.

http://www.mediafire.com/?lvawgw2fj6gaz4y

The second link has only the LAST save, #6 from the ArmA 2 Other Profiles directory. It weighs in at 2.5 MB. I don't know if there would be any value in supplying the other saves or not, so I made these two reports just in case one wanted to save on the file size.

http://www.mediafire.com/file/m1g65us2rr30pyj/Deep%20Sandbox%20CTD%20report%20-%20Only%20%236%20Save.7z

I'm also supplying the download link to the PlannedAssault CTD report, just in case it might help in identifying what's causing the problem. Perhaps they're related?

http://www.mediafire.com/file/mmg3zqvcf4dmtrc/mission_3_prong_US__UK_v_Rus_1.zip

If I remember correctly, my last save was made after I exited the red car. I'm pretty sure that I accessed the building nearest to the car, and climbed its roof to start engaging the OPFOR. I was up there for but a short time, 30 sec. to a minute at most, before the CTD happened. I'm guessing that there has to be an issue with a particular unit that I didn't encounter till I reached that area, for me to play for as long as I did just to get a CTD event there...

Also, I have never modified a single config file for any of the mods that I've installed. They are all still at their default settings.

I'm bummed that the CTD happened, but up till then I was having a very enjoyable time. Thanks for making that possible.

A few observations:

Why do some corpses disappear, while others don't? It seemed like there was 50/50 chance of the corpses disappearing into the surface. I only attempted to scavenge a handful of corpses, and out of those attempts, two of them had the bodies disappear far too rapidly (seemingly within a couple of minutes of their deaths). I'd up the corpse-removal time to 7 minutes at the minimum, just in case the player's forces are pinned down in a long drawn out firefight, yet need ammo pretty quickly as soon as the sortie's over or an opportunity presents itself during the battle.

When one respawns in the Chinook, is it with one's original team, in the same state that they were in when the player was last alive? I noticed that each time I respawned, that some of the teammates that I had were already injured, and it seemed that the injured units were in the same slots as the original members were. Also, it seemed like if a teammate was dead before I respawned, that I respawned with one less "new" unit. Are my observations correct on this, or...?

The one surviving teammate that I had for the past couple of saves (the one armed with the SAW) was not responsive to my commands to rejoin the formation, even when I made sure that he had a clear line of sight to me. He was injured, yet standing. Normally, if a unit can't comply with a movement/formation command, they give an audio cue that they're unable to follow the order. If his legs were too badly injured to move, he never gave me an audio cue to inform me of it.

I finally found my first ammo crate that wasn't near a radar installation! Yay! I'm so proud of myself! :yay:

Before I go, take a look at these SWEET Halo units! The green ones taste like limes. The red ones taste like cheeries. The blue ones like blueberries. The gray ones like the crud that gets stuck underneath one's big toenails (don't ask how I know this). And the invisible ones taste like invisible (no flavor). http://www.armedassault.info/index.php?cat=news&id=5195&game=1

Kyle,

what's a CTD? as I understand your game crashed right? you might have a conflict between your mods. Sorry I don't have a lot of experience with this. It's think it's unlikely that it has been caused by the mission. Are you sure you have your mods in the right order, etc? Good luck with that. My game was randomly planting because of sound mods, dunno why :/ but I just disabled them. Try leaving just the essential mods.

The respawn, works sort of like this: you "reincarnate" into a guy sitting in the heli and teammates get teleported in it too, unless they're dead. It's the same teammates. Now that you mentioned it I think I should make it so that injured teammates would be healed. There's an annoying little bug where if you die and some of your teammates are in any kind of vehicles, they don't get teleported into the chinook. It's probably not hard to fix it, but it doesn't bother me that much.

Now the other problems you've mentioned are related to the UPS script. It manages the AI and corpse removal. The problem where AI becomes unresponsive is oh so annoying. It concerns units that you have accepted into the fireteam. And corpse removal should happen after 10 min or so, but I once noticed that a dead body disappeared way too soon so I guess I'll have to look into that. I might also see about replacing UPS with UPSMON.

Thanks for the feedback :) btw im probably gonna put this in the mission. coming up - air drops ;)

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what's a CTD?

Crash To Desktop.

The game suddenly quit and I was left staring at my desktop.

My game was randomly planting because of sound mods, dunno why :/ but I just disabled them.

Yes, that seems to be the case with me as well. In fact, I brought that up as a clue in the PlannedAssault thread. I'm sorry to hear that, because for me, the sound mod that I'm using, it supplies far superior sounds to the game than what BI supplied. I'm going to take it out, and see if that stops the CTDs altogether. Has anyone else had this kind of specific problem, and did using just the default BI sounds avoid the issue?

I wouldn't worry too much about whether or not you should supply the player with the option to play Lone Wolf or with just one other partner. Starting out with a four man element seems more than sufficient. If a player doesn't desire to have that many, he could just let them die or send them on a suicide mission. It just dawned on me though, couldn't you come up with a dialogue option to dismiss a soldier, who then goes off and operates on his own?

I think that the healing/restoring of injured/lost teammates on respawn is a good idea.

Those Ranger units look really good too.

And adding those additional RH weapons would be a pretty nice bonus.

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Thanks for suggesting those weapon packs. I'll most likely include them soon :)

And I really want to add the option to play as a lone wolf or just a team of 2, but I can't think of a way to provide configuration for the mission, because I don't want to use dialogs like for example thomsonb did. I'll probably soon provide a settings file together with the unpacked mission, but then you have to play through the mission editor or at least use it to "Export to Single-Player Missions" after setting changes. Any suggestions anyone?

---------- Post added at 05:55 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:38 PM ----------

Kyle,

what's a CTD? as I understand your game crashed right? you might have a conflict between your mods. Sorry I don't have a lot of experience with this. It's think it's unlikely that it has been caused by the mission. Are you sure you have your mods in the right order, etc? Good luck with that. My game was randomly planting because of sound mods, dunno why :/ but I just disabled them. Try leaving just the essential mods.

The respawn, works sort of like this: you "reincarnate" into a guy sitting in the heli and teammates get teleported in it too, unless they're dead. It's the same teammates. Now that you mentioned it I think I should make it so that injured teammates would be healed. There's an annoying little bug where if you die and some of your teammates are in any kind of vehicles, they don't get teleported into the chinook. It's probably not hard to fix it, but it doesn't bother me that much.

Now the other problems you've mentioned are related to the UPS script. It manages the AI and corpse removal. The problem where AI becomes unresponsive is oh so annoying. It concerns units that you have accepted into the fireteam. And corpse removal should happen after 10 min or so, but I once noticed that a dead body disappeared way too soon so I guess I'll have to look into that. I might also see about replacing UPS with UPSMON.

Thanks for the feedback :) btw im probably gonna put this in the mission. coming up - air drops ;)

Great i look forward to those extra RH weapons and as for the Lone-wolf thats good your thinking about including it and i also agree with the 2 man fire team. Hope someone can help you figure out a way to implement them or what Kyle_K_ski said about dismissing the solider to go off and operate on his own would work too if it can be done.

CTD stands for Crash to desktop.

Unfortunately i get it as well :(

At first i thought it might have been my overclocked CPU/or the fact that it can getting really laggy for me (Low frames) maybe that just my rig but then i haven't really had issues with other missions but then again with all the stuff going on around me in the mission my CPU can't cope :( but yeah on the hunch that its the overclock i down clocked and i still got the CTD.

Edited by Dealz

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