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Sarien Sanitizers
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Posts posted by MusicallyInspired

  1. :( Confirmation from someone in-the-know:




    About the blue frog stuff, it is not possible to trigger that response. The frog object is a Feature, that is to say, a part of the pic that responds to commands (without being a view). A Feature usually has some sort of graphical representation, but in other cases one must resort to pixel hunting (there's a debug feature in LSL5 as welll). In this case, the Feature is placed on Roger's left shoulder, as the text implies (or rather, it is his shoulder).
    Now, the reasons why you can't get the message in the released version:
    • The frog feature is not initialized at room start-up, so the game system doesn't know it's there
    • Even if the frog feature was initialized, another feature (restOfPod) takes precedence over it, so the game system doesn't care it's there
    • The doVerb method of the feature disregards which icon was used - and doesn't call its superclass - so the default handler for the "look" cursor isn't run.

    A little ScummVM-fu can solve the first two problems and enable the teleport code (indeed, I've done so). A hex-editor might solve the third and cause the message to be displayed.


    So that rules it out completely. Only hope left is NRS's patched version...

  2. Ah, I did not know that. Incidentally, troflip (author of SCI Companion that I mentioned earlier) was kind enough to provide the source for SQ4 and SQ5 courtesy of his (in progress) SCI script decompiler. HE said it's not complete yet and some portions are still in asm and not all of it is included, but it should be much easier to get a grasp at what is going on in the time pod room. I've looked over it already. The frog instance is there just like it is viewed in SCI Viewer, but it contains a method called DoVerb that seems to have something to do with time codes (so what you say makes sense here, BlockMaster. The shoulder, the blue frog, and the time code menu are all connected). Other than that, the frog instance is never used anywhere. I don't even know if it has to be used anywhere or not. Having worked on SCI0 fangames, I know that to use instances you have to declare them and then specifically use them in the code somewhere. It might be the kind of thing where the game automatically looks for these kinds of instances for icon interaction responses without needing to use them like an SCI0 parser game does. I'll dig into it more and see what I can see...


    Here they are for your perusal! I recommend viewing the files in Notepad++ and changing the Language syntax highlighting to C++ (even though it isn't, it's close enough). The files are all renamed to .TXT, but if they were to be decompiled with SCI Companion and worked with and recompiled, they would be .SC files. A lot of the code is full of unnamed variables and procedures that are given names like "global112" etc, because he hasn't been able to get the original names out of the compiled script as they no longer exist. However, he mentioned he might be able to get most of them by another means. Anyway, lots of unnamed variables.


    EDIT: I see now that the frog instance isn't even initialized while the other instances are. That's probably what NRS added in his version. Which means that the blue frogs line should exist in his version. I'm going to do some tests with it.


    EDIT 2: I just tried using Roger's left shoulder with the hand in the Time Pod in NRS's patched game, but it doesn't do anything. Am I missing something?



  3. Incidentally, troflip, author of SCI Companion (a tool used to create SCI0 games), is making an update to his tool so that we will finally be able to make VGA SCI games! ALSO, he's working hard on a decompiler which will allow us to examine SQ4's or any SCI game (up to SCI1.1) scripts so we can discover just how to trigger this event. Or even re-enable it if it's not already. :) :)


    http://sciprogramming.com/community for more details.

  4. OKAY

    So I've been scouring the game's resource files with SCI Viewer. I discovered something a little extra, though not at all helpful to actually get this thing triggered (at least not yet). I looked at the disassembled script, the messages resource, and the heap resource for the Time Pod room. According to the heap file, this is the frog's instance:

    instance frog of Sq4Feature
        x               = $0
        y               = $0
        z               = $0
        heading         = $0
        noun            = $0
        modNum          = $ffff        ; -1
        nsTop           = $b7        ; 183, setMark
        nsLeft          = $1b        ; 27, mode
        nsBottom        = $bd        ; 189, open
        nsRight         = $3e        ; 62, '>', replay
        sightAngle      = $6789        ; 26505
        actions         = $0
        onMeCheck       = $6789        ; 26505
        approachX       = $0
        approachY       = $0
        approachDist    = $0
        _approachVerbs  = $0
        lookStr         = $25        ; 37, '%', message

    Notice the nsTop, nsLeft, nsBottom, and nsRight values. Being familiar with SCI0 code conventions, these are values for a bounding box on the screen. In this case it seems to be for a click event. Here's a picture of the area the bounding box encloses, which happens to be Roger's left shoulder when sitting in the Time Pod, which makes sense given the content of the message itself:




    So what interaction is it? At first glance it seems to definitely not be use, look, or talk as none of those trigger it. Indeed, looking, using, or talking to Roger's shoulders yields generic responses for the entire pod. No inventory object I've tried works either. Everything else is greyed out (lick, smell, walk). At first I thought that Blocky here was correct and that it was probably an interaction for one of the greyed out icons. Yet, in the heap resource the message is tied to an identifier called "lookStr" (presumably "Look String"), which logically would mean that it is only triggered by looking at it. But it obviously isn't. This leads me to believe that it only triggers under certain circumstances. So what are those circumstances?


    I thought it might be illuminating to boot up the beta version of SQ4 and see if I can somehow find a way to trigger it. Unfortunately, the Blue Frog line isn't in the beta version. However, it is in the disk versions. Sadly, the debug mode was removed from all SCI1+ final releases. I'm going to continue to dig into the script and heap files, though, and see if I can spot some condition under which it triggers.

  5. Pretty much the same as pcj. Didn't know about Korea or Scott's feelings before and still disliked the style. I actually thought the Two Guys were responsible for it because of the Instant Replays. The only thing I really liked was the soundtrack.

  6. Cartoony =/= 50's retro. There are various styles of artwork that are all cartoony. I really enjoy SQ5's artwork. But it's nothing like SQ1VGA's or SQ6's. There's a tremendous amount of detail in SQ6's backgrounds and I respect that. And while the characters are cel-shaded, at least they're not as bad as and much better animated than KQ7's.


    But as far as SQ1VGA's artwork, it's not the sprites and animations I have issue with, it's that round-edged 50's sci-fi look that's just so completely contrasting to the great work that Mark had put into the visual style of Space Quest. Space Quest's art has always been classic, sleek, and stylish, not overly colourful and bubbly like some ages 1-4 kid's PlaySkool funhouse theme park. At least SQ6 stayed true.


    Ugh those stupid mantis and chicken space ships....I loved Space Quest's ship designs...all but the ones from that game. They ruined it.

  7. The game's vibe, while good for what it is, just doesn't feel like Space Quest to me. The characters and writing do, I guess it's the story that doesn't. Especially the whole Inner Space angle. Not very interesting to me. I do consider it one of the funniest in the whole series, though.

  8. I wouldn't be against the bridle not being mentionedand I'm not against the fact that it is not visible on screen. I do agree that it's a little too far when you have to he standing in exactly the right position. I replayed it recently myself and even though I remembered and knew what to do it took me me a frustrating few attempts.


    Also, Rosella cleaning the dwarves house is right from Snow White. So, yeah. Different time. Like a hundred years ago.

  9. As far as I'm concerned Fate of Atlantis is better than Raiders and Last Crusade (the movies) combined. Love the vibe. Didn't like The Last Crusade game near as much. It was good, though. But too much enforced fighting. Unless it's just more of a harder puzzle to avoid fighting.

  10. Growing up I was always against metal. I didn't really understand what it was. I assumed it to be just loud noise and pointless aggression/animosity with no real respect for the music. Didn't know how wrong I was (I still believe some is, though).


    I "discovered" metal (or rather, discovered how great it is) via Metroid Metal in the beginning, and then video game covers in general after that (Dwelling of Duels and MAGFest stuff). It turns out "metal" is just what I would have called "guitar music". So I liked it and I didn't even know it. It wasn't evil sounding and dripping with mindless hate, it had layers upon layers and the music was actually intricate and enchanting all at the same time. Metal is just rock music with the intensity amped up to 11 with all the delicious musical complexity you could ever want. Needless to say, I love intensity. Actually, I've come to appreciate a lot of soul and r&b music in the same way.


    Bands? I still don't really know a whole lot. I used to be a huge music snob years ago when I was a dumb kid and would always go against the flow of what everyone else liked because it must be "dumb". Some of that has still carried over, even though I don't have that opinion anymore, so I don't go out of my way to discover these popular metal groups. Every once in a while someone will recommend me something, though, and I'll actually listen to it and fall in love with it. Need to take more musical suggestions more often. That's something I'm working on. I'm not a musical snob anymore, I promise.


    Anyway, these are the metal or metal-related bands I've come to love:


    -Pagan's Mind - Norwegian prog awesomeness, like Dream Theatre only heavier. If you don't mind power metal vocals. I love their actual music, though. Not so much from Heavenly Ecstacy, but they're earlier albums (sans their first, which was a bit of a flop, and they later reimagined themselves) are just amazing, musically. Some of the best and most talented guitar solos I've ever heard. Plus, their albums are all about sci-fi and Stargates!


    -Dream Theatre


    -Ayreon - The epic sci-fi prog metal/rock/everything concept works of Arjen Lucassen. Guest vocalists and musicians on every double album. Just great. And he loves to use old "outdated" hardware and equipment. It's just great. His drummer Ed Warby who plays on most of his albums is one of the sickest drummers I've ever heard. I was excited to learn that one of his best albums The Human Equation is getting a live theatre performance. Most of the vocalists (including James LaBrie) from the album are involved as well. I was sad to hear that Devin Townsend and Mikael Åkerfeldt wouldn't be able to make it, though. Still, it will be epic. I need to listen to this guy's other projects as well, like Star One.


    -Circle of Illusion - These guys aren't strictly metal. In fact it seems like they do a lot of styles like rock, electronic, soul, r&b, and even disco. But it's prog greatness and they do have a lot of metal as well. Fairly new group, I think. Yet another concept album band. Loving concept albums lately.


    Nine Inch Nails - I haven't listened to nearly enough of this, but what I've heard tells me that Trent Reznor is a musician with true soul. Loved Hurt and some of the other tracks I've heard.

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