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Author Topic:   DEBATE: next demo...
A2597
Member
posted May 01, 2001 11:50 AM            
OK, we all know LDA is working on a new version of tread marks, along with a new demo. The first demo gave away to much, and left some with no reason to buy the full, the 1.5 demo didn't give enough to show how wonderful TM is. so, what is the middle ground?

heres my idea for a demo:

two maps, showing two incredibly diverse places.
lets try Scarab and one of the new forest levels. (Can't get much different then THAT)

tanks, two to three kinds, the origanl demo was pretty good in this regaurd I think...

And lastly, multi player. but restricted. you can play only on servers that allow demo users. (I imagine that there Will be at least ONE. )

so, how does that sound?

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The Weatherman
Member
posted May 01, 2001 12:17 PM         
I think that the problem with the old demo is that it gave unlimited demo play - no time or # of games played limitation. This was enough for the dedicated mooches. I think the new demo should be crippled in some way that prevents people from being able to play nthe M-player for more than say 5 hours or 15 days. That is plenty of time for the people who will actually decide to by the game.
The map and tank limitation is fine though. Also,full players should be able to log onto the demo server with any of the normal full tanks - that will tease the demo players too.

TM - a minute to learn, a lifetime to master

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Vlad
Member
posted May 01, 2001 12:50 PM            
Well, it should have a fairly good amount of available stuff. Maybe even the Nuke. Oddly enough, the first time I played the game, the first weapon I got was the nuke. Needless to say, I was floored by the effect/sound/destructive power.

The two map idea is a good one. Something with water, and something with a good amount of trees. Maybe Scarab and The Ramp. Maybe even Armageddon for fun :-).

Weatherman, while letting full version players play with any tanks on demo servers is a good idea (as a tease), it has some practical problems.. If all the tanks were included in the demo download, then it might be crackable, not to mention a larger download.

If they weren't included, then you'd have to redownload whatever tanks were being used every time you entered the server. It's just not worth it.

And now for my own ideas:

I know I sound like a broken record, but how about getting our old camera control back? While it wasn't overly self-explanatory, turret view/mouse look/camera mode control is a LOT easier to work with than what showed up in the 1.5 demo. The code's still gotta be in there somewhere. Why not re-enable it for the old-timers?

Perhaps tone down the shadow? I remember when I used to grab it and love grabbing ammo boxes, but then I learned how to use the 120mm... It's a good newbie weapon, but it's HORRIBLY unbalanced. Unlike the Nuke and Matter Missle, where you can blow yourself to pieces if you don't aim correctly (heck, I do all the time :-)), the Shadow just requires you to get close and fire away. Maybe make the range less?

Well, that's not so much points on the demo itself but the new version.. oh well.


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The Weatherman
Member
posted May 01, 2001 01:07 PM         
Yeah, you are right about having the expanded tanks available for full. I forgot that you need the files to see a tank or mod.

How about a ghost mode where a demo player can log into a full game and only observe like the server operator - well, i guess that wouldn't work either for the same reason as above.

Does anyone have a motion capture card on their box? Could rec. multiple games and make a best-of clip and make it available in streaming form. That could show all of the awesome tanks and mods and the chatter that really enhances the game. I have a DV camera and a firewire card - but I don't know if it does video capture. Or how about a streaming feed from one of the games from a gods-eye perspective. I always wondered what the server operator sees

Karldar has modded the shadow to have only 10 shots which definitely makes it a more fair weapon. You can always lobby your favorite server to do the same. Good point about it being a good newbie weapon - should definitely be kept around for that purpose.

[This message has been edited by The Weatherman (edited May 01, 2001).]

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Rex R
Member
posted May 01, 2001 01:42 PM            
you can frag your self with the shadow if you get to close to the target

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Vlad
Member
posted May 01, 2001 01:51 PM            
Really? I've never had that happen. I'll have to try that out.

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Karldar
Member
posted May 01, 2001 02:19 PM            
Yeah, Vlad-give it a try! Ahem-I've never done it myself*cough*, but I hear it's possible. LOL!

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JVortex
Member
posted May 01, 2001 06:35 PM            
the server doesnt get ANY view of the game in progress, just so you know Weatherman. he has to log in just like anyone else to see anything. the server interface only has a couple buttons on it and is mainly just text.

OH MY GOD!!! its THAT topic again! i think the main thing to do to solve all these view issues is to simply just let the user position the camera wherever they want to. use the mouse to rotate your angle and the + and - keys to zoom in and out. then a menu option to keep the camera steady or follow the terrain. nuf said. would be kinda cool to zoom way out and get a birds-eye view of things. a "cockpit" view would be fun too.

and adding in that default generic tank idea that has a basic skin on it that says "model not available" or something would fix the problem of full versions being able to use their own tanks. besides, it would be nice and solve a lot of problems anyhow.

also heres a thought... maybe shut down the demo server at certain hours? chances are that regardless of what steps are taken to limit the demo to a time limit someone will find a way around it. having the server only running for certain hours (with an easy time zone calculator built in) could help.

a bit more difficult (i imagine) way to do things would be to have the master server keep a log of who logs in when by a game specific serial number. then it can compare the specific serial number to how long and how often it logs in. if that serial number game has been cracked and has spent too much time on the server or logs in more often than it should be able to then block off both that serial number and maybe the IP as well just for good measure.

this would be a pain to impliment im sure as it would have to be a completely automated subsystem. but i think it could be done. it could also compare IP addresses to serial numbers as well to make sure that someone doesnt come up with a program that alters the sent serial (as long as they had a static IP anyhow).

this wouldnt probably stop someone on a dialup connection who found a way to send in a random serial number. but this combined with built in limitations would stop a hell of a lot of people from screwing the company over.

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Let the rocks roll and the battle commence. BZ The RPG. Check out the site! Loads of Tread Marks support and AddOns. (Under Heavy Construction) The non-TM areas of the site have been resurrected!

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SuperUnknown
Administrator
posted May 01, 2001 10:37 PM            
Just as long as the demo is timed and cannot be cracked easily.Maybe like shareware........Only give like a 7 day trial or something ,then the whole game is disabled after that.I don't really care whats availible in the demo....just as long as its disabled after a certain amount of time.If it is timed I *WILL* report any site that has a crack.I wouldn't want somebody like me trying to patch the darn game

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JL
Member
posted May 02, 2001 08:36 AM            
One thing they shouldn't do is let demo users run there own servers like they did with the first demo. They should leave the server program out for sure. One problem with the original demo is they had modded servers like sheldons, The Spoon and a few others I can't remember.

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A2597
Member
posted May 02, 2001 11:53 AM            
I don't know about the timed stuff. I'm all for VERY limited MP play though...
GOT AN IDEA!!!!
If you join an MP game with the demo, you get kicked out after 5-10 minutes. that way, people will REALLY want the game!

But don't do that with the SP race, only in online deathmatch...

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The Weatherman
Member
posted May 02, 2001 05:42 PM         
Is there a way to have a live stream what your monitor sees? Would be good for Refing contests and for promo-ing TM to demo players. Maybe LDA could host a 24hr live stream of a well used server? Also, more ref-ing ideas inspired by the invisible tank problem - Make a tiny tank mesh with great stats but no weapon and no texture - that way they can look at all of the action w/out interfering. Maybe even use the bug that causes an invisible tank to prevent the ref from showing up on the map. Or, give the ref unlimited cruise missiles to administer penalty frags

Okay, is posting unlikely TM updates a form of spam?

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SuperUnknown
Administrator
posted May 02, 2001 10:46 PM            
A37......uh,whatever.To do that you would have to give them the whole game.If they were to join the full server they have to have all the maps and tanks.
Weatherman:I know a way to make a movie with what you monitor sees in RealPlayer format.....Don't know if that would help.At least maybe Matrix could put a movie in his guide,made up of some nice mod gameplay.

[This message has been edited by SuperUnknown (edited May 03, 2001).]

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