Choose Your Language

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

A Day At A Time

Over the last two weeks (when feeling up to it), I have been trying to finish off another area. Hoegbo actually built the area in the toolset for me, but I have been writing the conversations and scripts to bring it to life. This area is a little more unusual in concept, and in my writing I am trying to ensure a balance between logical flow and what may initially come across as absurd. Of course, being a fantasy game, there is always a little room for maneuver and poetic licence, but I still think it needs to be handled carefully so I do not lose/frustrate the player. Hopefully, by the time the player reaches the end of the area, all will become clear and the experience will turn into an interesting one.

Conversation & Sound

During one part of the design, I did run into something interesting, which others may already know, but I will also comment on now for those who may not. If you have a sound object playing and the player enters a NWN2 style cutscene conversation, the player no longer hears the sound object playing. (The sound object is still playing, but it is suppressed during the conversation.) Interestingly, this does not happen with other styles of conversation windows.

A Haunting Flute Sound Comes From The Caravan

For instance, in the scene above the player hears a haunting flute sound coming from the caravan. When they go to investigate, this sound is suppressed (or not) according to the conversation GUI I use.

Smaller Interactable Hotspots

There is another handy tip I picked up when working on this part of the area: I did not want the entire wagon to highlight when approached and so used a smaller collision box to be the target of the conversation. However, a collision box does not have the small portrait picture of a wagon when in conversation. Therefore, I used some script on the collision box to initiate a conversation with the wagon instead (which now had the conversation). In this way, I was able to have a small "hotspot" that worked for a much larger placeable.

Conversations, plots and scripting continues ... all the while I feel up to it.


Master Changer said...

That soft light is really great!

Lance Botelle (Bard of Althéa) said...

All credit goes to Hoegbo for that!

He has made some great areas for my three modules, and I do hope they *all* get to be seen.


Eguintir Eligard said...

The sound objects did not pause for me when I did the rare cutscenes in Islander. I remember the last one that occurs in a small clearing while dreaming, the places is ripping apart. The earth rumbling and storm noises I put in place continued to go otherwise all the cinematic would be lost.

Lance Botelle (Bard of Althéa) said...

That's strange ... I wonder if it is based upon who starts the conversation as well then? I will keep an eye open on this in future and see if I notice what else may cause the difference.


Frank Perez said...

If I recall correctly, when you switch to an NWN2-style cutscene, the volume of sound objects change depending on where the camera (or is it the player character?) is relative to the sound objects. Hence, a sound object far from the camera (or PC?) would sound muted, whereas one that was right in front of the camera/PC would sound louder. It's been a while since I touched the toolset though, so I'm not really sure about any of this. Just thought to let you know in case my recollection turns out to be correct.

Lance Botelle (Bard of Althéa) said...

Hi Frank,

That sounds correct actually! For, after I tested it again, it seemed that even the conversation where the sound continued could appear muted if the camera was far out.

Thanks for the information.


Eguintir Eligard said...

solution... you should always use universally located sound effects for cutscene use. All of mine were, so you hear them equally everywhere.

Lance Botelle (Bard of Althéa) said...

Hi EE,

Th eproblem with this particular sound is that it does need to be "positional" due to its significance. Thankfully, I was able to play around with a conversation dedicated sound object as well, which did the trick.