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bluehappybyte

Dune Legacy 0.96.2

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Just want to drop a short note that Dune Legacy 0.96.2 has been released today which is the first release to support multiplayer games. I've tested it a lot but have not the resources to test internet games with up to 6 players so internet game is marked as beta.

The list of other changes is quite long, so I hope you appreciate it:

  • Added LAN multiplayer mode
  • Internet multiplayer mode with metaserver (Beta!)
  • Use scale2x for scaling
  • Make game scalable ingame (Zoomlevel x1, Zoomlevel x2 and Zoomlevel x3)
  • Add mentat help
  • Scroll build list with mouse wheel
  • Loading maps is more fault tolerant and shows only warnings in most cases
  • Loading maps now checks for non-standard features (see Section "Features" in the Dune II Format Specification)
  • Confirm window for game restart and game exit
  • Added 13 maps by Rippsblack
  • New options "Structures Degrade On Concrete", "Start with Explored Map" and "Instant Build"
  • Earthquake ("Window shaking") on large explosions (e.g. death hand explosion)
  • French translation (incomplete and only a machine translation)
  • Bugfix: Loading SCENH008.INI of Dune II V1.0 failed
  • Bugfix: Dune Legacy.log was not used on Windows
  • Bugfix: Support non-ascii characters in paths and filenames on Windows
  • Bugfix: Infantry units could not trigger spice blooms
  • Bugfix: When playing as the Sardaukar, the announcer still says "Harkonnen", e.g. "Harkonnen harvester deployed"
  • Bugfix: Sardaukar Reinforcements did not work
  • Refactoring: Drop Visual Studio 6.0 support completely and start using C++0x features
Downloads can be found on the Dune Legacy Website. Have fun!
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Wow, that's a pretty impressive list of features :D Awesome job! And, most importantly, the MP is now back in (since those old releases), which should be excellent news for Dune II fans :)

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Some random comments:

  • I find it a bit odd that when the zoom function is used, the cursor remains the same size. It looks especially weird on 1024x768.
  • Unit movement still isn't always reproduced faithfully to the original, e.g. there's no "bumpy" movement for wheeled vehicles on rocks.
  • Many voice announcements still seem to be missing.
  • When my Quad accidentally drove into a spice bloom, it just exploded as if it were destroyed. In Dune 2, there's an animation that looks like the unit that triggered the spice bloom falls under the sand. I think they used the transparency effect similar to the worm and sonic blast shapes for this..
  • There's some weirdness with the small arms attack animation that I just can't clearly define. It somehow feels out of place. The bullet flies into the attacked unit and just disappears. I'm not sure if it's the same in Dune 2, gotta check.
  • I was thinking that maybe the original build icons would look better than the scaled-down large images, only the "Build It"/ "% complete"/"Place It" text could be replaced with the unit or building name in same font.
  • It's a bit annoying that when you start a campaign mission, the briefing music continues playing. Similarly, after you quit a skirmish game, in-game music will still play in the menu instead of the menu music.

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I find it a bit odd that when the zoom function is used, the cursor remains the same size. It looks especially weird on 1024x768.

The GUI itself is not zoomed, just the map. Actually I would need a higher res cursor image to support different cursor sized. I think no one wants to have a blocky cursor

Unit movement still isn't always reproduced faithfully to the original, e.g. there's no "bumpy" movement for wheeled vehicles on rocks.

Many voice announcements still seem to be missing.

I know. Focus with this release was on getting multiplayer running and improving the custom maps.

When my Quad accidentally drove into a spice bloom, it just exploded as if it were destroyed. In Dune 2, there's an animation that looks like the unit that triggered the spice bloom falls under the sand. I think they used the transparency effect similar to the worm and sonic blast shapes for this..

I think you a wrong here. I tested it with different versions and the unit just disappears in Dune II, the screen shakes and then after a short time a crater appears. I just added the explosion to make it more interesting.

There's some weirdness with the small arms attack animation that I just can't clearly define. It somehow feels out of place. The bullet flies into the attacked unit and just disappears. I'm not sure if it's the same in Dune 2, gotta check.

The bullets are probably too fast.

I was thinking that maybe the original build icons would look better than the scaled-down large images, only the "Build It"/ "% complete"/"Place It" text could be replaced with the unit or building name in same font.

Again a problem with the low res of the original game data. That's why I prefer the downscaling of the other images.

It's a bit annoying that when you start a campaign mission, the briefing music continues playing. Similarly, after you quit a skirmish game, in-game music will still play in the menu instead of the menu music.

Will probably be changes but I'm still undecided because I find it annoying if the music changes every few "clicks":

  • Start Dune Legacy => Menu music
  • Start campaign => Briefing music
  • Start game => Game music
  • Quit game => Menu music

Just a short note: I've just put two skeleton maps on the Dune Legacy Webpage that can be used as basis for creating your own maps. All you need is a text editor.

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The GUI itself is not zoomed, just the map. Actually I would need a higher res cursor image to support different cursor sized. I think no one wants to have a blocky cursor

What about making a larger version of the cursor (or two: 2x and 3x) with manually smoothed graphics and load each one depending on what resolution mode is being currently used? The original cursor looks too tiny in the highest resolution mode anyway.

BTW, for and idea of a higher resolution targeting cursor, take a look at the "move" and "attack" action icons in the original game.

When my Quad accidentally drove into a spice bloom, it just exploded as if it were destroyed. In Dune 2, there's an animation that looks like the unit that triggered the spice bloom falls under the sand. I think they used the transparency effect similar to the worm and sonic blast shapes for this..

I think you a wrong here. I tested it with different versions and the unit just disappears in Dune II, the screen shakes and then after a short time a crater appears. I just added the explosion to make it more interesting.

Well, maybe there is no transparency thing, but the explosion part kind of contradicts the original idea of the unit being "swallowed" by the bloom IMO.

There's some weirdness with the small arms attack animation that I just can't clearly define. It somehow feels out of place. The bullet flies into the attacked unit and just disappears. I'm not sure if it's the same in Dune 2, gotta check.

The bullets are probably too fast.

I have checked this, and in Dune 2, there's a bullet impact sprite (third frame of units1.shp) shown on the target. Either it's played too fast, or doesn't show up at all in DL.

I was thinking that maybe the original build icons would look better than the scaled-down large images, only the "Build It"/ "% complete"/"Place It" text could be replaced with the unit or building name in same font.

Again a problem with the low res of the original game data. That's why I prefer the downscaling of the other images.

Well, in fact, those original icons - I mean the entire thing with both the small unit/structure image and the text part (also the "size in tiles" part for structures) - are 64x48 pixels in size, the same size as large icons in DL (or, for that matter, Command & Conquer Gold). Although this is a matter of preference, my opinion is that those original icons preserve the original feel of the game, so to speak.

It's a bit annoying that when you start a campaign mission, the briefing music continues playing. Similarly, after you quit a skirmish game, in-game music will still play in the menu instead of the menu music.

Will probably be changes but I'm still undecided because I find it annoying if the music changes every few "clicks":

  • Start Dune Legacy => Menu music
  • Start campaign => Briefing music
  • Start game => Game music
  • Quit game => Menu music

That's how it was in the original game, and this pattern is also present lots of games (e.g. Command & Conquer, Warcraft series, etc. etc.), what exactly is wrong with that? huh.gif Also, personally I have a weird feeling when, for example, the briefing music continues to play during the actual game, whereas my Dune 2 playing experience tells me it shouldn't.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that, but I really don't like the Worm mask graphics without the transparency as the destination indicator. I know TonyD originally used it, but it isn't very pleasant aesthetically. Alternatively, there could be an animation similar to the one in the first Starcraft, based on the original targeting cursor (I think Stefan used that in D2TM, although I'm not sure in which version).

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