Plazma Burst Overhaul?

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Plazma Burst Overhaul?

Postby meeksource » 16 September 2019, 04:50

As a game dev myself, I'd like to suggest some changes to the game in general, not the trigger actions. While these are mostly in question format, they are a call to change of the level editor


1).
Why is every Variable trigger action operation separate?
For example, if you wanted to do the simple equation (2 * x + 9) / y, in the editor you'd have to do:

Multiply value of variable 'A' by value 'B'
A: x
B: 2

Add value 'B' to value of variable 'A'
A: x
B: 9

Divide variable 'A' by value 'B'
A: x
B: y

This is extremely time consuming for anyone making maps in PB2, and might scare away new coming map makers from using the level editor. I can't tell you how many hours I've poured into this admittedly frustrating system that, half the time, doesn't even work.


2).
Why are trigger actions divided into 'A' and 'B'
Clearly, only having two inputs is very limiting as to what you can get as an output. For example:

Set value of variable 'A' to result of atan2 function with values of variables 'A' and 'B' as parameters

I assume if you had a 'C' input, you could have a place to store the output that won't overwrite the value of 'A', but why limit yourself to inputs? Just have map makers be able to edit the actual code of the game:

c = atan2(a, b)

This isn't the only problem with this system. Having it like this limits map makers to only the trigger actions already in the game. If you really just absolutely HAVE to have this system, why not just have it so inputs are interchangeable? For example:

Set Character 'A' scale to value 'B'
and
Set Character 'A' scale to value of variable 'B'

are identical operations, but with the silly limitation of one only being able to handle a variable and the other a raw value. Why not just have one that can take both? This issue wouldn't be so bad if all operations had a variable + raw value duo, but some don't, like:

Change the gravity to the value 'A'

which you would expect to have another similar operation that goes something like:

Change the gravity to the value of variable 'A'

right? Well, it doesn't; this operation does not exist in-game as of posting. I've actually suggested this feature in a previous post.


3).
If there are variables, and session variables, why aren't there local variables?
Why can a variable be global to a game, to a game session, but not a network of triggers, or even a single entity?

In-game, if you set a variable, any and all triggers interacting with variables is able to overwrite or edit this variable. Why is this the case, especially for a game were you'll be making and copying multiple instances of an object?
Like if I wanted to make the variable "player_health" for a single player with, say, only two triggers that interact with it, and then I copied it into multiple players, ALL players would share the same health. This means that if you really wanted to have each player to have health you could interact with individually, you'd have to do something like:
player1_health, player2_health, player3_health... and so on.

You might think this isn't so bad, but this gets REALLY bad when it comes to making multiple instances of the same repeated object like an enemy; which for a typical map will have about 10-30 enemies.


4).
Matter of fact, why are triggers even a thing?
Having said all of the above, why even use triggers? Why not just have entities in which you can edit blocks of code? This would be so much cleaner, and map file sizes would be so much smaller and less glitchy.
The work has already been done of separating the operation types (e.g Movable, Region, Variable etc) so why not just be able to make blocks of code inside of those objects? Instead of having a list of functions dedicated to Movables, why no have it so you can click on the movable and edit the actual code of said Movable?

The answer to this is probably something along the lines of "less expirienced map makers need a way to make maps." But if this is the case, why not just have two different versions of the level editor? What could we call these two different versions, you ask? Hmm, maybe "Level Editor" and "Advanced Level Editor" perhaps?


5).
Why is there no change log?
I've began to notice that when new things are added to the game, nothing is ever posted to the "News" tab of the website, the tab literally dedicated to telling players what's been added to the game. While on the topic, not much is posted on the social media of the game dev, with tweets often being months apart. This isn't a big deal, but it will end up making players have to rely on second-hand sources to tell them whats new in their favorite game, and encouraging your players to look elsewhere for answers isn't a good way to run a game.

6).
Why has your sequel taken so long?
While I understand that you, Eric, are a one-man team, the supposed "Plazma Burst 2.5" has taken around 2-3 years to come out and counting. This is the very reason I'd like players and map-makers to be able to mess around with or even mod the base code of the game, or at least a limited version of such; supporters of the game can pick up the slack of the developer(s).
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Re: Plazma Burst Overhaul?

Postby MLG COOL DOMINIK » 17 September 2019, 20:34

1. what
2.Kinda true, but its all its needed.
3. Because we dont need a complexier level editor
4. That would be confusing and a waste of time, i have a feeling you havent even TOUCHED triggers.
5. There is ffs, look at the news section in the main page of pb2
6. Because it will have intense graphics, plus eric doesnt want donations, JUST WAIT.
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Re: Plazma Burst Overhaul?

Postby Hikarikaze » 18 September 2019, 00:47

MLG COOL DOMINIK wrote:4. That would be confusing and a waste of time, i have a feeling you havent even TOUCHED triggers.

OP's idea is a lot more organized and less confusing. Currently if you want to add logic to, say, a character, you need a separate trigger with an action that affects that character. OP's idea is to move that entire process into the entity itself: if you want to make a character move, you program it into the character itself instead of outside via a trigger

It's a lot cleaner than having rows and columns of triggers lined up and simpler than checking which trigger influences which object

MLG COOL DOMINIK wrote:6. Because it will have intense graphics, plus eric doesnt want donations, JUST WAIT.

Graphics (particularly lighting and shadow calculations) are mainly due to the game engine. Unless the engine is still being worked on, that's not a likely reason. A more likely reason is that the game content itself (assets, programming, etc) is still being worked on and added in its current pace along with other things like debugging and testing to do.
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Re: Plazma Burst Overhaul?

Postby meeksource » 18 September 2019, 03:11

MLG COOL DOMINIK wrote:1. what
2.Kinda true, but its all its needed.
3. Because we dont need a complexier level editor
4. That would be confusing and a waste of time, i have a feeling you havent even TOUCHED triggers.
5. There is ffs, look at the news section in the main page of pb2
6. Because it will have intense graphics, plus eric doesnt want donations, JUST WAIT.


I've been using the level editor for about a year and a half now, so yes I have "TOUCHED" triggers. Going into detail about the news, the dev frequently adds trigger actions and new decorations to the game and I've yet to see a recent post in the news tab about what exactly was added.
Concerning the developer "not wanting donations" or adding "intense graphics" is his business, but my point was that his game has taken an extremely long time to come out, and this is of his own fault.
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Re: Plazma Burst Overhaul?

Postby Fan Fan1 » 18 September 2019, 06:09

1. I like the idea of using equations to declare/define variables and it seems quite feasible to implement. I think Eric should replace all variable operations with something like "Variable > define variable 'A" with equation 'B'". As for the variable trigger actions that are not user-defined (player-slot, frame time, etc.), perhaps we can replace them with methods (getPlayerSlot(), getFrameTime(), etc.). This allows us to, for example: obtain a map's frame rate in just a single trigger action.

3. I find this a major problem when copying and pasting variables. Usually, if you group objects together and copied and pasted them, the duplicate would function the simalarly to the first. However, when variables come in, you cannot just copy and paste these objects, because the variables are not local. So I definitely would find your idea as useful, but it seems a bit more difficult to implement.

4. This reminds me of actionscript 2.0 and Scratch. I am not really sure how this would work in PB2 without having to also implement the use of arguments and parameters. This would be a step forward in map making but, that would require probably an entire remake of the Level Editor itself, so I don't think it is feasible.

5. I do think the changelog could be improve to be more specific, rather than just getting a short summary. However, if it adds more time to the development of PB2.5, I would sacrifice the changelog instead.

6. Well... Eric Gurt is married (I think) and so he only works on PB2.5 in his spare time. However, I do think it would be nice if he had a github so that his supporters can test the things he is working on and help him finish faster. The difficulty in this would be choosing the right people for the job.
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