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Massive CTF updates
09-10-2012, 06:55 PM (This post was last modified: 09-10-2012 07:03 PM by Samual.)
Post: #1
Massive CTF updates
Hey guys, i'm just doing this quick post to talk about updates to the Capture The Flag game mode which have just been merged into the stable branch of the game. As some of you may know, i've been working on re-writing the code myself, which includes cleaning up the codebase as well as adding many new features and fixing old problems with the game mode. Let me just go over the changelog of sorts right now:
  • Moved all of the CTF code to the mutator system (cleaning up code base a lot, including: entirely re-wrote ctf code, moved scores and bot roles into mutator gamemode files, separated configuration into its own file (gamemodes.cfg), improved how spawnfuncs for CTF are handled, etc)
  • Flags float on water (to help with gameplay on aquatic maps)
  • Flags auto-return if they fall somewhere they can't be gotten (like into Lava, or Slime, or a triggerhurt)
  • Flags properly follow through teleporters and on jump pads like you would expect
  • Dropped flags show up to both teams, so if you die get it back quickly -- otherwise the enemy knows where you lost the flag.
  • Dropped flags return themselves if they fell on their own base spawnpoint
  • You can now throw flags-- dropping a flag now "throws" it just like throwing a weapon
  • If you have strength, you throw flags twice as hard Big Grin (just for fun ^_^)
  • Thrown flags can be captured by base flags (points awarded to the person who last had the flag)
  • Implemented a flag passing system (so you can pass a flag to team mates without dropping/throwing it, promotes gameplay).. NOTE: Currently disabled by default due to broken support for warpzones. Once warpzone support is fixed, this will be enabled by default.
  • Flag passing and flag throwing are done with the +use bind, MAKE SURE TO ADD THIS BIND TO YOUR CONFIG, IT IS NOW IMPORTANT Big Grin
  • You can request people to pass you the flag (it sends them a centerprint) by pressing the +use bind as well
  • Better bot team support-- If you request the flag from a bot, it will automatically pass it to you.
  • All new particle effects for captures/pickups/returns/passes/drops/etc
  • New sounds for touching a flag and passing flags
  • "Stalemate" system which shows the location of both flag carriers on the radar if they have both had the flag for an extended period of time (fights against camping with the flag)
  • "Help me" waypoint system which automatically adds "FLAG CARRIER NEEDING HELP" to their waypoint when they're low on health
  • Integrated real vehicle support, including new mutator hooks and the ability for players to interact with the flag without even leaving the vehicle (i.e., touch the flag with the vehicle and you still pick it up)
  • Much better handling of intermission (stop flags from moving, reset game mode entities, don't do announcements anymore)
  • Added ability for dropped flags to take damage-- meaning you can return them faster by shooting them/hurting them
  • Added "healthbars" for dropped flags to show how long they have left before they return
  • Improved centerprints and notifications of events in the game mode
  • Added "captime" score field so that you can track your fastest capture times for each map (yes, that means XonStat can display cap times for matches too)
  • Updated support for capture shield (idea by Morphed to help prevent bad players from taking the flag haha)
  • Implemented better speedrun system
  • New scoring system (and configs), added "capture assist" points- score awarded to whoever had the flag previously to the current flag carrier who captures.

Attention server owners: If you're using a git checkout for your server, update now to get the new features! If you're using autobuild, update in 24 hours from this post. If you're using 0.6 or 0.5... you're shit out of luck. Additionally, clients WILL NOT have the new effects/sounds unless they update too- you can provide a compat pack (instructions included) for them to download automatically or clients can download it from that link themselves. Finally, almost all of these features listed above may be controlled (tweaked, enabled, disabled) by the server owner at their will... some of them (like damaging flags) are disabled by default for now.


Thanks, hope you enjoy the changes, and happy fragging people!
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09-10-2012, 06:58 PM
Post: #2
RE: Massive CTF updates
I would like to point out I also plan to add some more features still, just wanted to get this merged to master for now... Additional ideas include: Better bot teamplay (automatically passing flags to players with more health than them, or more closely paying attention to team roles like defending or attacking), "timed" captures/pickups/returns (so you have to stand by a flag for ~2 seconds to pick it up, for example), and controlling which weapons (if any) a flag carrier can use (and other such abilities).

There are also a few things I may be forgetting... but yeah, that should be good.
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09-10-2012, 07:46 PM
Post: #3
RE: Massive CTF updates
Much needed, much welcomed. Aw yeah.

asyyy^ | are you releated to chuck norris?
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09-10-2012, 10:24 PM
Post: #4
RE: Massive CTF updates
OOOOOoooo.... Shiny Big Grin Can't wait to try this!

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09-11-2012, 12:03 AM
Post: #5
RE: Massive CTF updates
Sounds neato, so I only point out what I have concerns with:

Flags float on water (to help with gameplay on aquatic maps)
If this is default, you just removed the plus fun factor on aquatic maps. Diving and underwater fight for the flag is always one of the most hardest and exciting things. I'd go keep as a cvar, but don't make it default on this.

Thrown flags can be captured by base flags (points awarded to the person who last had the flag)
I suppose this is off by default, else space CTF maps like NN will be pretty much reduced to "toss the flag to capture from half map".

Stalemate system which shows the location of both flag carriers on the radar if they have both had the flag for an extended period of time (fights against camping with the flag)
I'm not sure if this is good or not, as it can happen on balanced games (yes, happens a lot on public too) that the flag is carried by two very good players, and only a well organised attack can take them down. I'm pretty sure this is an exciting thing, and revealing the enemy flag carriers' positions remove a little bit from the fun factor again.
In quake2 CTF maps promoted "camping" with the flags, or at least partially hiding - map knowledge is a key role in this and I especially know one popular CTF map (yes, it's popular for pickupers too!) that has hiding spots. If the tracker system is on by default, you literally punish this knowledge.
This feature is a very grey zone stuff, I can see it'll help a lot on newbie servers, but imho hurts the game on higher levels.

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09-11-2012, 12:41 AM (This post was last modified: 09-11-2012 12:42 AM by hutty.)
Post: #6
RE: Massive CTF updates
The minsta ctf server I play on has git ... I noticed the stalemate thing ...
I like it ... for fast gapple minsta games it helps keep things moving ...

while your working on the ctf system I would like to request 3 and 4 team ctf support
also I would like so mappers can pick what teams go on a map (so one map is red vs blue ... another is blue vs yellow)
This would help with crating storylines for single player missions that (kinda) make sense ...
and add more variety to the ctf color palate

bzflag has these ctf features ... they work fine ... (in bzflag at least)


on a side note ... I would like yellow and pink to be switched to green and white ... cause red blue yellow pink ... doesn't really look that nice ...

Samual can can control the powers of the xonotic's source ... but can he see why kids like cinnamon toast crunch?
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09-11-2012, 12:54 AM
Post: #7
RE: Massive CTF updates
(09-11-2012 12:41 AM)hutty Wrote:  The minsta ctf server I play on has git ... I noticed the stalemate thing ...
I like it ... for fast gapple minsta games it helps keep things moving ...

while your working on the ctf system I would like to request 3 and 4 team ctf support
also I would like so mappers can pick what teams go on a map (so one map is red vs blue ... another is blue vs yellow)
This would help with crating storylines for single player missions that (kinda) make sense ...
and add more variety to the ctf color palate

bzflag has these ctf features ... they work fine ... (in bzflag at least)


on a side note ... I would like yellow and pink to be switched to green and white ... cause red blue yellow pink ... doesn't really look that nice ...
Play keyhunt instead, CTF will never be anything other than 2 teams (and in this case, Red vs Blue) unless someone else codes it-- It's really not worth the amount of work it would require (which is a MASSIVE amount) to make this 2,114 line monster support dynamic teams like that, especially when there is another game mode which already supports a "capture everything" concept.

Quote:Flags float on water (to help with gameplay on aquatic maps)
If this is default, you just removed the plus fun factor on aquatic maps. Diving and underwater fight for the flag is always one of the most hardest and exciting things. I'd go keep as a cvar, but don't make it default on this.
The map can settemp it to be disabled if that is desired by the mapper-- However, this feature is an absolutely necessary one by default... You say underwater fights are "fun" -- really, on most maps, they're just frustrating. It is not exciting, it is annoying, and i'm firm on my belief that this is a necessary change.

Quote:Thrown flags can be captured by base flags (points awarded to the person who last had the flag)
I suppose this is off by default, else space CTF maps like NN will be pretty much reduced to "toss the flag to capture from half map".
It is enabled by default, but I can see a point here... However, I have very much so limited the flag throwing capabilities, it's literally impossible to do something like that on newtonian nightmare for example. In fact, it's ALWAYS faster to *run* with the flags than to throw them, because they can't go faster than a player can. (... unless you have strength, but that's mostly as a joke anyway, probably will end up disabled by default. Still, you can't do that on NN with strength even)

As for the stalemate system, yes it's mainly for public servers... competitive gameplay will certainly disable it, which is fine, but really it helps with public gameplay I think. We'll see, this one could go either way.
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09-11-2012, 03:15 AM
Post: #8
RE: Massive CTF updates
(09-10-2012 06:55 PM)Samual Wrote:  Hey guys, i'm just doing this quick post to talk about updates to the Capture The Flag game mode which have just been merged into the stable branch of the game.

[... tons of fancy new features ...]

[Image: tumblr_lvhuuq55N71qhoyau.jpg]

Really, Samual .. this is totally awesome and much appreciated. I did only know that you were working on some things like the "assist" points, but I'm baffled when I look at the loooong list of new features Big Grin

The only thing which doesn't yet convince me to be useful is the "stalemate" feature. (I agree with what C.Brutail said!) How long is the "timeout" for FCs to become visible to other players with this feature? If the timeout is quite large, I guess it's okay an helpful. But if it's too low and FCs are revealed quickly, it takes the fun and exercise out of searching the map for the enemy FC, then finally managing to set off an "enemy flag seen" message to notify your teammates and trying to get the flag back... =)

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09-11-2012, 03:47 AM
Post: #9
RE: Massive CTF updates
Excellent! This really does mean that 0.6 is out of date!

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09-11-2012, 04:38 AM (This post was last modified: 09-11-2012 04:45 AM by shogun_assassin.)
Post: #10
RE: Massive CTF updates
I love you Samual!

I'm not sure about flag passing though. Several months ago I participated in testing it and it worked on too big distance back then. It also breaks one map (can't remember the name) where flags are next to each other separated by bars. But the map sucks anyway so screw it.

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09-11-2012, 05:07 AM
Post: #11
RE: Massive CTF updates
(09-11-2012 04:38 AM)shogun_assassin Wrote:  It also breaks one map (can't remember the name) where flags are next to each other separated by bars. But the map sucks anyway so screw it.
Perhaps the flag passing needs to obey certain clipping? Let's say there is player clip applied then the flag should not be able to penetrate it. The map really should have player clip applied to such an area anyway.

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09-11-2012, 07:28 AM
Post: #12
RE: Massive CTF updates
Sounds good, will update my servers tomorrow (autobuild).
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09-11-2012, 07:45 AM
Post: #13
RE: Massive CTF updates
Samual has my full support on the the stalemate feature. I consider two main scenarios for it:

1) one or more FCs hiding (think attic, in the rafters)
2) two skilled players holding against each other

I think scenario #1 is one of the worst experiences in CTF. It turns the game into a boring, inconsequential deathmatch. No one likes to play "where's waldo" in a fast-paced arena FPS. FC waypoints are a big benefit in this situation.

Scenario #2 is where two players are holding their flag against other players by either working with their team, fragging would-be fckillers like crazy, or due to negligence on the part of the other team. For whatever reason it may be, the FC waypoint shouldn't materially impact the gameplay in this situation because they are already actively defending the flag.

Also, if you pass the flag off to a teammate the FC waypoint goes away (IIRC, correct me if I'm wrong Samual), encouraging more team-like play. I consider that a good thing!

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09-11-2012, 09:55 AM
Post: #14
RE: Massive CTF updates
(09-11-2012 05:07 AM)edh Wrote:  
(09-11-2012 04:38 AM)shogun_assassin Wrote:  It also breaks one map (can't remember the name) where flags are next to each other separated by bars. But the map sucks anyway so screw it.
Perhaps the flag passing needs to obey certain clipping? Let's say there is player clip applied then the flag should not be able to penetrate it. The map really should have player clip applied to such an area anyway.
I'm aware of this map and it's problem, actually.... unfortunately, I can't actually fix this problem from code, it is a map problem (it is lacking proper clipping, the wall is too thin)-- and for reference, it was possible to drop the flag through the wall there before too, so this is nothing new.

Additionally to be clear, passing doesn't work through this wall-- the tracing knows there is a wall there and doesn't allow a pass between it.
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09-11-2012, 09:56 AM
Post: #15
RE: Massive CTF updates
(09-11-2012 07:45 AM)Antibody Wrote:  Also, if you pass the flag off to a teammate the FC waypoint goes away (IIRC, correct me if I'm wrong Samual), encouraging more team-like play. I consider that a good thing!
Nope, the waypoint stays the whole time during stalemate mode-- you can't get around it until someone caps.
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09-11-2012, 10:29 AM
Post: #16
RE: Massive CTF updates
going to test this right now
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09-11-2012, 12:26 PM
Post: #17
RE: Massive CTF updates
How does the flag float? What you could do is have it have a small velocity upwards, so that it stays at the surface if it's dropped there but still stays a bit underwater when the FC is killed down there.

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09-11-2012, 02:58 PM
Post: #18
RE: Massive CTF updates
(09-11-2012 12:26 PM)Mr. Bougo Wrote:  How does the flag float? What you could do is have it have a small velocity upwards, so that it stays at the surface if it's dropped there but still stays a bit underwater when the FC is killed down there.
That's already how it works ^_^
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09-11-2012, 04:07 PM (This post was last modified: 09-11-2012 04:14 PM by _Subzero_.)
Post: #19
RE: Massive CTF updates
If I'm reading the code right, disabling stalmate will make server unpure? If so, that's bad.

I think stalmate feature is a CoD-like change. Right now skilled FC can use his knowledge of the map / movement skills to avoid enemies. Especially with two skilled FC's, such stalmates make for terse moments with sense of balance and challange. Showing the FC location steers the game more towards raw fragging skills. And there are other game modes for mere fragging. Also, I don't agree that hiding makes for a bad game experience, at least not on maps that don't have layout issues in the first place. Its not that hard to check all hideouts in a proper map, as long as you know it. And map knowledge should be encouraged. On top of that, hiding is usually used by a clearly weaker team that happened to take a lead and then wants to preserve it. I don't think such option should be removed from the game-play.

So I think stalmate feature should not be required for a pure server. Better yet, it should be disabled by default, and left for beginner servers.
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09-11-2012, 08:32 PM
Post: #20
RE: Massive CTF updates
dynamic teams neads that many code changes?
thats strange ...

Samual can can control the powers of the xonotic's source ... but can he see why kids like cinnamon toast crunch?
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09-12-2012, 02:48 AM
Post: #21
RE: Massive CTF updates
If someone who just reworked the whole CTF code says that, I believe him Smile

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09-12-2012, 03:17 AM
Post: #22
RE: Massive CTF updates
may someone explain to me what that shield thingi means or how it works? Is it based on ELO? (if your ELO is far below the average ELO you can't pick a flag up?) Or how does it work?
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09-12-2012, 04:21 AM
Post: #23
RE: Massive CTF updates
(09-12-2012 03:17 AM)tuxator Wrote:  may someone explain to me what that shield thingi means or how it works? Is it based on ELO? (if your ELO is far below the average ELO you can't pick a flag up?) Or how does it work?

Indeed. The way it's presented makes it look like a terrible idea.

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09-12-2012, 05:27 AM
Post: #24
RE: Massive CTF updates
(09-12-2012 04:21 AM)Mr. Bougo Wrote:  
(09-12-2012 03:17 AM)tuxator Wrote:  may someone explain to me what that shield thingi means or how it works? Is it based on ELO? (if your ELO is far below the average ELO you can't pick a flag up?) Or how does it work?

Indeed. The way it's presented makes it look like a terrible idea.
Disabled by default, it's a feature which punished people who grabbed the enemy flag and did poorly with it (i.e. lost it and the enemy returned it)--- I merely fixed the code so that it works (I think) from Morphed's original design, I didn't design anything about it nor do I really support it.
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09-12-2012, 01:32 PM
Post: #25
RE: Massive CTF updates
Awesome! I just played a few matches on Overkill with the new features enabled. And now I'm convinced that the stalemate feature is a good thing! =) The timeout of 1 minute before the FCs are shown is a good choice - just when it gets annoying to search for the enemy FC, they become visible on the map. Also, the flag-return works quite well in terms of gameplay, especially since players can now see how long it takes for the flag to return.

I might be repeating myself, but .. great work, Samual! Big Grin

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