Jackal's server - Spawner
Posted: Tue Apr 30, 2019 7:27 pm
Now that we have the new map rotation in place, it is time for us to turn our attention to the new spawner system.
Under the new spawner system, special attention has been paid to the types of enemies spawned and on what particular style of map, this is particulary true for the stock maps and larger campaigns, although of course every single map has been playtested and has it's own "MobsSet" assigned. This effort is to ensure that the map is more immersive and truer to the author's initial intentions. We have playtested each map with no spawner enabled, to see exactly what (and how many) monsters are in the map to start with. Next we noticed if the map had a certain style, ie. skaarj/mercenary base/spaceship, temple, cave, outdoor map, mine etc. The NPController.ini by Masterkent allows us to assign certain MobSets to certain "style" of maps.
For example on the Vortex2 map, only skaarj or pupae are spawned. This makes more sense than using a generic list of all regular enemies (Mobs). when creatures such as mantas, sliths, brutes are being spawned on the Vortex Rikers a certain amount of immersion is lost, therefore enemies are now more appropiate to any given map. For example a "MobsSet" called "SkaarjMaps" is applied to maps like IsvDeck1, ExtremeCore, and QueenEnd.
Similarly, things like no mercenaries or brutes on Chizra. On the Chizra map a different MobsSet will be in use. For example Chizra is much more engaging as a map when the enemies spawned are sliths, any other water creatures, a few extra skaarj, tentacles, the occasional spider or a rare chameleon. It's an atmospheric wet temple and hearing many brutes or mercenaries firing over and over again maybe detracts from that atmosphere and the original author's intent. This is especially true for the stock maps and initially, a lot of attention will be paid to the stock maps first. Of course every map will be given equal consideration, but the stock maps and some of the larger campaigns deserve a greater initial consideration.
Having viewclassed the pawns on all maps, it has been obvious to see that some map authors purposefully omitted brutes for example, so the MobSet applied to that map will contain no brute classes. Similarly, a lot of map authors omitted mercenaries and for those maps, no mercenaries will be spawned. Many of the older maps often contain just about every standard Unreal pawn and these maps will use the default MobSet called "MixedMaps". These are just a few examples of how many degrees of variation can be attained for any given map.
The large campaigns will also definitely benefit from the new spawner system because custom MobsSets can be designed to suit those maps. As an example there is a custom MobsSet called "7BTempleMaps" which is used for the magnificent temples in the Seven Bullets campaign. Maps like these deserve their own MobsSets. It can be seen therefore that we can have a much greater and finer control over the spawner now.
In terms of number of enemies spawned on maps, the first thing we did is make the decision that the number spawned should be a multiple of 5. Dealing with multiples of 5 is much easier to deal with and easier on the eye to work with. So for example any previous number of 21 was rounded down to 20 and any 22, 23 or 24 was round up to 25.
Generally, I would say that about 50% of the maps have retained the previously used number of enemies, rounded up (occasionally down) to the nearest 5 or 10. Below is a brief description of most of the notable changes of the rest of maps in rotation :-
The stock maps, Vortex2 - NaliC2 have a significantly higher amount of enemies than previously spawned. These maps are known so well that even on difficulty=3 they are very easily won, especially with 3 or more in the map, hence the marked increase of enemies on these maps.
ExtremeDGen - spawner removed - not needed.
QueenEnd spawns only skaarj and pupae. Drew's "Skaarj General" also has a very small chance of appearing. This is a nod to Andrew "Drew" Ross who allowed us to alter the map SkaarjCastle so it could include an image of OldSparky-(DOG)- at the end for our servers.
The spawner has been disabled on the following Ron maps :-
The Ron maps above have a vast amount of enemies already or have high concentrations of enemies in smaller enclosed areas and do not require more spawns.
shrak4 is removed from the spawner because it's already very full of gunners and snipers.
trap2_NPF removed this from the spawner because there is enough monsters in this map without the spawner.
BeamOut removed because it is a tiny 1 room map. Not needed.
S1SkyShip removed because of the never-ending Pupae.
S3Toys removed, there are more than enough enemies on this map already and this map is all about the coloured Kralls so why spoil the atmosphere!
42Gateport removed. There's enough marines (even at the start of this map) that even more random enemies seems unnecessary. We all die a lot here even without a spawner in operatoin.
44OldSection has it's own custom MobList where other types of Marines are spawned, so this map now only has extra Marines. It breaks immersion when mantas, brutes etc. are spawned on this map.
45HighTown (as 44OldSection)
lssg13 removed because there are enough Krall already and it is a Krall map, so spawning others seems inappropiate.
lssg13c removed from spawner, it's just a tiny 2 room map to activate the stargate to the final map.
lssg14 removed from spawner. This map is entirely krall based and there's a decent number of them, so extra different enemies here seems unnecessary and it would slightly spoil the atmosphere of this map.
DawnoftheDead removed because there is more than enough enemies on this map and they are all "zombie" monsters, so adding more regular enemies kind of detracts from the author's original intentions.
Snipervalley2 removed from spawner. There are more than enough Snipers and other pawns on this map. I've heard a few players grumbling about this map being too full of pawns...
Altar-III had no monsters spawning. I can't see why monsters shouldn't spawn on this map, but someone else may know the reason why it was set to 0, so it will be left at 0 for now.
Noon map has many enemies already and it's nearly impossible not to die at the start already so it is removed from the spawner.
Nightfall (as Noon)
Added 10 more monsters to all the Herd Coop maps. These maps are large - seems justified.
The Wanderer of Na Pali series has had the amounts increased. These maps were lacking in enemies generally for Coop play.
Phoenix Mission Pack 1 amounts increased to help Coop play.
Sinistral's "Unreal Forgotten" maps mostly have roughly double the amount of enemies now.
The Rob 'Doublez-Down' Collins maps (Ehactora series + others) have had their enemies increased from the previous default of 20. These maps deserve more enemies for Coop play.
ChapelOfTheElders' amount of enemies increased a lot, it's a big map.
CryoRaktar_2_NPF removed from spawner. Enough mercenaries spawn as part of 2 creature factories on this map and as Jackal-(DOG)- mentioned once, it's just too busy. Spawner removed.
Global_NPF removed from spawner. This is a very brief map with 1 central room which is already full of mercenaries and behemoths, any more enemies is just overkill and messy.
Dead Star Map-pack enemies have been increased, most of these are big open maps that required more enemies.
The huge temple maps in the Seven Bullets campaign have had many additional appropiate enemeis added using their own special MobsSet. These temples are huge and deserved more enemies for Coop play.
Also in the Seven Bullets campaign, the maps Jones-07-Noork, Jones-08-Pirate, Jones-08-Pirate2 and Jones-08-Pirate3 have been removed from the spawner. Although there are relatively few enemies in these 4 maps, the Terrans are extremely tough and spawning others seems inappropiate somehow. It's enough of a fight as it is.
UB-NexusEnd uses the SkaarjMaps MobSet, because when non-skaarj monsters are spawned the battle with the 2 Berserkers invariably ends up in a fight between the spawned pawns and the Berserkers, which kind of defeats the point of this final tough encounter.
As requested, MrC-(DOG)-s maps all run without the spawner.
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We understand that some players would like huge amounts of extra enemies, but for example, if every little area of water in every map is always inhabited by devilfish, sliths and squids then the "danger" is that any map with water will feel the same, although it was funny in testing to see a Devilfish squashed into the tiny water basin on the map Ruins; unable to move.... Sometimes it's just as great to see a few calm and enemy-free small areas of water also. We think it's important to have this contrast of pace.
Obviously this is quite early days for the new spawner system and some rigorous testing will be required, so all players are invited to join the Workbench2 server where further refining to the spawner is currently taking place. Thanks to the players who have so far joined the Workbench2 server to give their thoughts and contributions. Note that the spawner changelog can also be found at the foot of the maplist.
The map list and the amount of enemies spawned can be found in the column "Enemies spawned" on the current map list, which can be found under the GameServer heading on the website's main page.