The Haus

Saturday, December 11, 1999

TRIBES Extreme Missions

The missions that were to be part of TRIBES Extreme (which was recently axed) have been made available for download (3.01M) on TRIBES Players. You TRIBES fanatics would do well to snag them. Thanks Evil Avatar.

I82 Demo

The Adrenaline Vault has a copy of the demo of Interstate '82 (28M), Activision's follow-up to their popular Interstate '76. The reviews of this game have not been good. I want to download it to see if it really is as bad as some think. Thanks Blue.

Robert Duffy .plan Update

id tool-monkey Robert Duffy updated his .plan with the current status of the Q3A tools and recent fixes. Here's a snip:
A couple of things. First, things look like they are still good to go on getting the editor and map building tools out early next week. I am shooting for Tuesday sometime but that can change based on a variety of things. In any event it should be soon. Secondly, the editor and shader manuals will not be available right then but will follow shortly after. The shader manual probably within a few days of the tool release, the editor manual a bit after that.

Paul Jaquays .plan Update

id designer Paul Jaquays updated his .plan in a rather big way. He includes some tasty tibdits about what happened to some of the "lost" models, particles, and maps that appeared in some early (pre-Q3Test) screenshots. He concludes with a light-hearted jab at some of the negative reviews Q3A has been receiving:
And, by the way, a lot of the Q3A reviews I've been reading lately look a little rushed to me. I can't help but wonder if they would been far better if they just had more paragraphs in them. ;-)
Read some of the reviews and you'll understand . . .

Tweak3D Demo for Q3A

Tweak3D has created a demo for Quake III Arena similar to their "Crusher" demo for Quake 2. It will give you an idea of what your framerate will be in a worst case scenario. You can download the file here (1481K). He also posted his results with the demo, including some tweaks he used that may have influenced performance.

To run the demo, make a directory under your baseq3 directory called demos, unzip die.dm3 into the demos directory, fire up Q3A, pull down the console (with the tilde key), and type in the following commands:
timedemo 1
demo die
To create the demo, he fired up Q3DM17 (The Longest Yard, formerly known as Q3Test2) with 31 Visor bots. He stayed in spectator mode, swooping in and around the action. I would never join a server like this :)

With my standard settings: based on high-quality settings at 640x480 and bilinear filtering, dynamic lights off, cg_gibs 0, I got 14.3 fps. My system is a Celeron 400 with 128M RAM, Creative Labs AGP TNT card with CL's 2.08 drivers, Creative Labs SoundBlaster Live! Value with Live!Ware 3.0. Theoretically it should work with the Q3ADemo, but I couldn't get it to work (To be honest, I didn't try very hard either. I assume performance would be very similar to the full version.).

Friday, December 10, 1999

UT Mod Information

Brandon "GreenMarine" Reinhart made a bloody huge update to the Unreal Technology page. He shows you how to use the tools that ship with UT to build modifications, along with links for more help.

Q3A Map Reference

Zoid sent sCary this Q3A Map Cheat-Sheet with the screenshot, filename (Q3DM* or Q3CTF*), and map name. This will be a very handy reference until I get those levels burned into my cerebral cortex.

Review of Grossman's Book on MSNBC

MSNBC's Steven Kent reviews the book written by David Grossman, the man every first-person-shooter fan loves to hate. Here's a snip:
Stop Teaching Our Children to Kill, a new book describing the dangers of video games by Lieutenant Colonel David Grossman, a former Army Ranger who taught classes at West Point, is the intellectual equivalent of the computer game Doom. Grossman spends most of the book running around wildly shooting accusations at video games and the companies that make them, never stopping to examine the full ramifications of what he is saying and completely ignoring the facts when they get in his way.
I think that pretty much sums it up. Check out the rest of the article, it's a good read. I promise that this is the last thing I will post about Grossman. I think his 15 minutes are just about up.

Q3A Bots: Update!

I just received a return email from id's Kevin Cloud about the problem with certain punctuation marks in your name causing the Q3A bots to ignore your commands (see story). Here's what he had to say:
I appreciate you working on this for us. I tried it out and sure enough it is repeatable. This will be fixed in the next release.
Gives you that warm and squishy feeling inside, doesn't it? :)

John Romero .plan update

John Romero updated his .plan today with his birthday wishes for Doom.
It was six short years ago, down to the hour. I remember staying up the last 30 hours doing exhaustive testing before Jay Wilbur uploaded the shareware version of DOOM to the University of Wisconsin's FTP site. We couldn't get in -- too many people were sitting on the site, waiting for our upload. The target directory was full of bogus files with names like when.is.it.coming and hurry.up.id, but finally we got the sysop to up the connect limit to 250 and we barely got in. Afterthat upload, things changed.

I remember the crazy lockup bug we had the day before -- if DOOM sat running for too long, it would just lock up. Turned out to be a valuethat was being incremented by the 140-tic-per-second timer function that was wrapping around (it takes a very long time for a LONG to wrap, even at 140-tics-per-second, but this one was uninitialized so it took even less time). So, we finished it up and sent it out, just knowing everyonewould have a lot of fun with it. Happy Birthday, DOOM.
A.T. Hun comments: That's nice, John. Now get Daikatana finished!

Graeme Devine .plan Update

id's Graeme Devine updated his .plan with news of the upcoming Q3A tools release, a point update (read: patch), and cracking down on crackers. Here's a sniff:
We're looking to get the tools out there very soon for creating Q3A modifications. We'll probably do a point release on the product before we release anything, and we've been busy writing (gosh) documentation for the editor, shaders, etc. I'm really looking forward to seeing what you guys do with Q3A!

We're now cracking down on people using key generators. We stop accepting input for a period of time from addresses that spam different keys to the authentication server. I see a lot of people running key generators right now; I've yet to see a single one make a correct key.

Daikatana: Today or Bust?

Evil Avatar pointed me to this news blurb from yesterday on IGNPC. Here's the skinny:
While investigating continuing rumors that Eidos had refused the initial Daikatana build, IGNPC managed to get in touch with sources close to the project who were able to help shed a little light on the continuing saga of the game's development. These sources revealed to us that yesterday, Ion Storm was given 24 hours to deliver a solid build to Eidos or face the reality of a missed holiday ship date. These sources were unable to confirm or deny the rumors that this deadline was the result of an initial product refusal.

While Eidos' public relations department is still telling us that the company is, "still working on a December release," it seems likely that Daikatana won't find its way into stores until sometime next year. As usual, keep an eye on IGNPC for more details as soon as they become available.
Stop me if you couldn't see this one coming down Main Street. Once again, you have to file this in the "unsubstantiated rumor" category but it certainly makes sense, given recent events and the fact that Christmas is a scant 15 days away . . .

New Q3A CTF Maps?

sCary is reporting that id is testing some new CTF maps (by Zoid and Disruptor), and he provides this screenshot of PingTool as proof. This would be too sweet! I can actually command the bots now and there will be more maps to command them on. Rapture!

Are the Q3A Bots Ignoring You?

They sure were ignoring me! Every time I tried to fire up a game of teamplay deathmatch or CTF, the bots would not listen to any of my commands! I checked the Quake 3 World forums (an excellent source of info, BTW) and found a thread entitled Bots that misbehave??!! One person posted that restoring the defaults did the trick, so I set out to find out which setting was the culprit. Fortunately, it didn't take me to long. Here's my answer, as posted on the above thread:
I've found the answer! Your name determines whether or not the bots will listen to you! I found out that the bots would listen to me fine if my name was (without quotes) "ATHun", "AT Hun", or "A T Hun". They will ignore me if my name is "A.T. Hun" or "ATHun /THP/". If there are periods or slashes in your name, the bots ignore you! Commas seem to work fine as do brackets [].

Since the I was using the name "A.T. Hun" and a previous poster was using "J.Frost" (I assume), the bots were ignoring us because of the periods in our names. "/lp/thankless" was being ignored because of the slashes. There may be other punctuation that causes problems, but I didn't play with it much.
There you have it. Are the bots ignoring you? Remove the punctuation from your name! Now if I could just get someone to explain to me why cg_crosshairHealth "1" isn't working . . .

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