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ryleyra

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Reply with quote  #1 
Strike Force Seven Mod - Version 1.3

The Strike Force Seven Mod has just been updated to support Artemis 2.4. As in 1.2, which was released to support Artemis 2.3, the "Galaxina" will launch "Adder" fighters piloted by Fighter console players. The ships have also been updated to support accent colors, and Ximni-style Combat Jump for certain ships. The Strike Force Seven Mission also has a lot of new functionality, including giving Warp and Jump to the NPC ships.

As of version 1.2 of the mod, there are two versions, with a batch file to switch between them. The original version is called the "retro" version, and includes ships from the 70's. The new version is called the "modern" version, and updates the mod with ships from the 90's. (The Planet Express ship is now a part of the modern version, and two ships I created myself were added to the 70's version)

sf7image.png 
From left to right, the 70's version features:

"Goliath" - The Gunstar from "The Last Starfighter"
"Galaxina" - The original "Battlestar Galactica"
"Quirk" - The United Galaxy Sanitation ship from the TV show "Quark"
"Constitution" - The Enterprise from "Star Trek" (both TOS and TMP versions are available)
"Midnight" - The Starfighter from "Buck Rogers in the 25th Century"
"Aeon Hawk" - The Millennium Falcon from "Star Wars"
"Hydro Raider" - Princess Karina's ship from "The Ice Pirates"
"Spacewolf" - Based on the helicopter from the TV show "Airwolf"

New in the 90's version, again from left to right, we have:

"Midnight" - Same as the 70's version
"Galaxina" - The 2004 reboot of "Battlestar Galactica" (complete with updated Vipers and Cylon enemies)
"Constitution" - The Enterprise-D from "Star Trek: TNG" (plus a Romulan Warbird enemy)
"Xlmbt" - A flying saucer, based on the Nestors from "Battle Beyond the Stars".
"Bright Star" - The "White Star" from Babylon 5
"Trollo" - A robot ship, loosely based on Steve Jackson Games' "Ogre" (the model is new, and more compact)
"Quirk" - The Starbug from "Red Dwarf" replaces the 70's version
"UPS" - The Planet Express Ship from "Futurama"

The Midnight, Aeon Hawk, Trollo and Xlmbt are common to both versions of the mod (as is the Midnight, which appears in both pics) so each version has 10 ships to choose from. I decided this was a better idea than trying to put all 12 ships in one version. I created the Quark and Ice Pirates ships myself, and although they're kind of simple, I'm proud of the job I did. The 70's version now recreates my original concept pretty faithfully, especially if you use the Strike Force Seven mission.

This game borrows very much from "Seven Samurai", and the sci-fi movie "Battle Beyond the Stars". For those who have not read the original thread, I originally wrote this game back in the 70's, for the Commodore 64. It didn't have the graphic enhancements of Artemis, but it was similar to the Super Star Trek games of the time, except with seven different ships that you played at the same time.

To recreate the gameplay of that old C-64 game (and to let the ships use "special abilities" unique to that ship) I have written a mission script which is also named Strike Force Seven. However, it's important to note that the mission is not needed to play the mod. You can play this mod in Solo or Co-Op modes, and the custom ships and some enemies from their franchises will be added to the game. The mission makes the mod a lot more fun, but if all you want to do experience commanding one of your favorite ships from the past, you can just start it up and play it on your own.

The mod exceeds the size of uploads on this site, so I am posting it on my site. It is at:

http://www.phan.org/games/SF7_v13.zip

More info on the mod, including pictures of all the models, (not updated for the 1.3 version) can be found on the Artemis wiki.

http://artemiswiki.pbworks.com/w/page/105869178/Strike%20Force%20Seven%20Mod

JSpaced

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Reply with quote  #2 
Ha! This is so barmy it HAS to work.
Does the mission script include some sort of tutorial to get to grips with the seven ships?
J

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ryleyra

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Reply with quote  #3 
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSpaced
Ha! This is so barmy it HAS to work.
Does the mission script include some sort of tutorial to get to grips with the seven ships?
J


Hm. No, but it would probably be a good idea to include that feature. I'll note the mission script gives you one minute for everyone to log in. (So for instance if you have three ships playing, it will add five more NPCs to bring the total to eight) There's also a readme file that offers some hints and tips, but they're kind of subtle. It could use a section on commanding the ships.

On another subject, while adding a page to the wiki for the mod, I realized that I don't have any custom UI or sound components. While none of the ships would share the same UI in common, it occurs to me that I could offer interchangeable UIs as part of the batch file that switches between the 70's and 90's versions. So I could offer the Star Trek and BSG UIs from those mods, plus probably a Star Wars UI and a Bab 5 UI.

The wiki page is here: http://artemiswiki.pbworks.com/w/page/105869178/Strike%20Force%20Seven%20Mod It includes unique pictures of all of the ships. (There are 15 currently, 5 common to both mods and 5 in each of the two versions) I also decided to include the special powers from the mission script in the page, so you can go there for more info on it.

EDIT: I thought I would point out that I found a bug in the current release when I started to work on adding this tutorial feature. Apparently, I somehow deleted all of the code I have written in the mission for the new White Star ship. I plan to post a correction very soon, but I wanted everyone to know that if they download the mod, the White Star's special ability isn't working.

All the other new features should work just fine though.
ryleyra

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Reply with quote  #4 
I have posted an update, upgrading the mod to version 1.2.1. This adds a couple of new features: 

  - A logo!
  - The main menu music files have been edited to play several appropriate theme songs
  - Normal music files (when the ship enters battle or the like) have not been changed
  - The "sf7start.bat" file has been expanded to install the UI from several mods
  - A couple more ships have the new Jump Gate special ability
  - The tutorial mentioned above. It's really more of playing tips than an actual tutorial but should help the Comms officer

The name of the file on my server has not been changed, but it contains the new update. If you downloaded the 1.2 version, I would download it again. If anyone has any more recommendations for the game, don't be shy about asking.
ryleyra

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Posts: 2,888
Reply with quote  #5 
Just a heads-up, I've been working on updating this release for Artemis 2.4. There isn't much to change, but the new ability to customize the accent color brings up a whole new range of possibilities. On my first pass at it, the Midnight turned out to be solid red, or whatever color you choose to use, while the Constitution's Bussard Collectors (the red domes on the front of the warp drive) and the top sensor dome all changed colors. [biggrin] I sort of like the solid color on the Midnight, but the Aeon Hawk did the same thing, and that definitely doesn't look right.

The new ship customization screen also showed that I had badly misjudged some of the ship sizes. So I'm currently in the process of tweaking that. The ability to use player ships as NPC ships also means I can remove the duplicates of the named ships I put in the vesselData file.
ryleyra

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Reply with quote  #6 
Version 1.3 is ready for release. This version supports accent colors, and the built-in mission now gives the AI controlled extra ships that bring the "strike force" to eight Warp or Jump drive. This makes the ships much faster and more useful to Comms.

I'd like folks to try the new version out and make sure everything works correctly. I did a lot of work on the mission, and fixed a lot of bugs that I found by testing out the AI. I had a few ideas, such as automatically assigning the ship's name based on the class you choose, or adding a GM menu that would let a Game Master take over the mission and run it, instead of letting it spawn on the timer. But I ultimately couldn't manage to make those features work the way I wanted to, so I dropped the idea.

There is both a guide to controlling the NPC ships via Comms in the readme file, and also a hints and tips section on which ships work well together. Let me know if there needs to be more detail on the capabilities of the individual ships. In general, the light and fragile small ships tend to do a lot more damage than the large, heavily shielded ships. As in the original C-64 game I wrote, the ships are NOT meant to go into battle alone. You should team up with two or three allies to be the equal of an enemy fleet.
ryleyra

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Reply with quote  #7 
I've tested this mod with 2.5, and it still appears to work with no issues. I may begin work on releasing a version 1.4 which includes a fighter bay image based on BSG and improves on the included script.
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