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    [PROTOTYPE] The Flame-Jump Gun



    The Flame-Jump Gun
    aka "The Dragon" Borne on the fiery winds of explosions

    Functions
    Fire : flamethrower, creates a fire damage volume.
    Alt Fire : eject the fuel canister, deploy a shield, detonate the canister and ride the shockwave with a massive backward velocity boost - everyone in the damage radius receives splash damage, except the player.

    Ammo cost
    Fire : Consumes ammo linearly.
    Alt Fire : All ammo is consumed in a single shot.

    Notes
    Alt Fire : The strength of the velocity boost and the splash damage from the explosion is proportional to the ammo count when triggered.

    The weapon is close range, but somewhat alleviates that risk by allowing the user a quick extraction from danger with alt fire. While powerful, that alt fire is a double-edged sword : when you trigger it, you have to aim with you mind's eye (for the advanced players) or blind luck (for the new users). And all your ammo is depleted, so you better be sure you want to take that shot!
    The traversal aspect of this weapon is also meant as a bit of help for new players, to have a chance at reaching those difficult to get to places... Meanwhile, the advanced players could most likely work it into a strategic use.

    As you can see in the video, I got the basic functionality of both fire modes implemented, but still need to figure out how to apply damage correctly for both. The main fire mode currently releases expanding damage volumes, but they do not match the path of the particles.
    There's also the challenge of replicating the fire trail over the net. The way I currently imagine it is attaching my expanding damage volumes (which are replicated) to every one out of x particles. That'd seem to be a fairly good approximation of the actual trail. I tried to look around the docs and forums but couldn't find out if attaching a blueprint/actor to a specific particle is possible. Maybe someone around here knows?

    As soon as I get the damage in the right direction (even if I can't get the particle attach thing working, I'll find something else), I'll of course share this with you all, so you can have a go at it.

    Well, what do you think?

    --

    A bit of a disclaimer : I'm not much of an competitive gunplay player, and my last actual UT match must have been some ten years ago. But I've been experimenting with the UE for a while now, and thought this new UT was the perfect opportunity to learn while doing. So I'm kind of approaching this from more of a design perspective than an actual player one, but might right off the mark.
    45
    It seems like a good combination of main and alt fire.
    26.67%
    12
    I like the flamethrowing but not the jump part.
    28.89%
    13
    The jump is interesting, but not the flamethrowing.
    8.89%
    4
    I don't like it at all.
    35.56%
    16

    #2
    I like the idea, sounds like a Bio-Rifle and Flak Cannon mix, with minimal function overlap, and the "Ammo as alt-fire" sounds fun and new. My only complaint is about the canister's speed (I think it could be faster) and about no self-damage. Sounds pretty unfair to me.

    Let's take an example: There are some enemies charging at you and you got a loaded Dragon and there's a platform above them. The sollution is quite exploitative, as you grenade-jump to that platform recieving no damage at all, as you damage your enemies.

    Doing both changes, I'm think it'll be a great addition

    PS: May I suggest a name? Firebreath.

    Comment


      #3
      This weapon is awesome, a flame thrower should fit right in with a new updated game play. The ability to use the weapon to get around the map adds massive depth to it.
      PayBack

      Comment


        #4
        Nice fire! I would like to try this gun out, alt fire looks interesting.

        Comment


          #5
          As I said before the Great Forum Crash '14, I like the primary fire (literally!) a whole lot, but the alt fire is counterintuitive for me. It's a concussion grenade, but that shouldn't have anything to do with a flamethrower.

          In Unreal II and XMP the Flamethrower alt fire was liquid napalm that could be used as mines, igniting when either someone walks over it or if someone shoots it. That would be more fitting the weapon.
          Unreal Tournament 4 eXpanded MultiPlayer (UT4XMP) efforts
          My website, listing all my Unreal series mods and mutators

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by FPSYX View Post


            The Flame-Jump Gun
            aka "The Dragon" Borne on the fiery winds of explosions

            Functions
            Fire : flamethrower, creates a fire damage volume.
            Alt Fire : eject the fuel canister, deploy a shield, detonate the canister and ride the shockwave with a massive backward velocity boost - everyone in the damage radius receives splash damage, except the player.

            Ammo cost
            Fire : Consumes ammo linearly.
            Alt Fire : All ammo is consumed in a single shot.

            Notes
            Alt Fire : The strength of the velocity boost and the splash damage from the explosion is proportional to the ammo count when triggered.

            The weapon is close range, but somewhat alleviates that risk by allowing the user a quick extraction from danger with alt fire. While powerful, that alt fire is a double-edged sword : when you trigger it, you have to aim with you mind's eye (for the advanced players) or blind luck (for the new users). And all your ammo is depleted, so you better be sure you want to take that shot!
            The traversal aspect of this weapon is also meant as a bit of help for new players, to have a chance at reaching those difficult to get to places... Meanwhile, the advanced players could most likely work it into a strategic use.

            As you can see in the video, I got the basic functionality of both fire modes implemented, but still need to figure out how to apply damage correctly for both. The main fire mode currently releases expanding damage volumes, but they do not match the path of the particles.
            There's also the challenge of replicating the fire trail over the net. The way I currently imagine it is attaching my expanding damage volumes (which are replicated) to every one out of x particles. That'd seem to be a fairly good approximation of the actual trail. I tried to look around the docs and forums but couldn't find out if attaching a blueprint/actor to a specific particle is possible. Maybe someone around here knows?

            As soon as I get the damage in the right direction (even if I can't get the particle attach thing working, I'll find something else), I'll of course share this with you all, so you can have a go at it.

            Well, what do you think?

            --

            A bit of a disclaimer : I'm not much of an competitive gunplay player, and my last actual UT match must have been some ten years ago. But I've been experimenting with the UE for a while now, and thought this new UT was the perfect opportunity to learn while doing. So I'm kind of approaching this from more of a design perspective than an actual player one, but might right off the mark.
            The alt-fire seems a bit cheap, having splash to everybody else but the player. At least the opposite team and the enemy players near you. But having a flamethrower would be awesome!

            Comment


              #7
              There are a number of jump weapons already, and I tend to agree with GreatEmerald that it seems like an odd add on to the weapon. The primary fire is great. Perhaps have the alt still eject the canister, but have it splash napalm over some radius then ignite. Could be achieved by defining the secondary fire to spawn <ammocount> napalm globules evenly distributed over a sphere with <explosion velocity>+<secondary fire velocity>, which burn for some odd seconds. Larger area damage at an extremely high ammo cost, very low or no concussion/force aspect to the weapon. This would keep a coherent theme and could make for some interesting team play dynamics via short term area denial, as the secondary would be most useful in cramped spaces, and less useful in wide open areas.

              Also I'm often a fan of working in a "tournament version" of other bits found in other Unreal games.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by Vailias View Post
                There are a number of jump weapons already, and I tend to agree with GreatEmerald that it seems like an odd add on to the weapon. The primary fire is great. Perhaps have the alt still eject the canister, but have it splash napalm over some radius then ignite. Could be achieved by defining the secondary fire to spawn <ammocount> napalm globules evenly distributed over a sphere with <explosion velocity>+<secondary fire velocity>, which burn for some odd seconds. Larger area damage at an extremely high ammo cost, very low or no concussion/force aspect to the weapon. This would keep a coherent theme and could make for some interesting team play dynamics via short term area denial, as the secondary would be most useful in cramped spaces, and less useful in wide open areas.
                Sounds like a fire-based gas grenade I suppose that if there is no gas grenade in a grenade launcher, then that would be quite fitting and useful, yes.
                Unreal Tournament 4 eXpanded MultiPlayer (UT4XMP) efforts
                My website, listing all my Unreal series mods and mutators

                Comment


                  #9
                  I think this might be a perfect weapon for siege or ONS. Also will the flame catch fire to anything that touches, like plants, decorations, or walls will get on fire for a couple of seconds or so?
                  History: UT99 (2003 - 2007; 2009 - Now) UT2k4: (2005-2007), UT3 (2008-2009)
                  UT Nicknames: Shotman, HeatWave, MY_KID
                  UT Clan: -={SDA}=- (Sniping Death Angles) and zsu (Zark Snipers United)
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                  Comment


                    #10
                    Flamethrowers never really worked in competitive games. A flamethrower is rad, ya, but it's just not a good concept for arena shooters. Nor is damage over time.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Thanks for the feedback! Too bad some posts were lost in the forum crash, but the gist of it was repeated in the new ones, I think.

                      I don't imagine the alt-fire primarily as damage dealing, it's really a one use "getaway" tool. (Or get to somewhere hard to reach.) Nor does it behave like a grenade, it seems my footage mistakenly gave some of you that impression. It's supposed to explode mere centimeters in front of your gun, right after the gun has deployed its shield. It literally blows in your face to give you that strong backward push. (I shortened the travel distance before explosion in my latest version to avoid the confusion.)
                      The splash damage I mentioned would be much less than, say, a rocket. Plus, the damage radius'd be much smaller.

                      As for the no-damage aspect : remember that when you use your alt-fire, all your ammo is consumed, thus rendering you unable to fire and change your weapon for a short while. That makes you more vulnerable for a bit. Plus, the risk of mis-aiming your "jump" is quite high. Combine that with the rather small splash damage strength and radius, and I'm not so sure it's such an unfair advantage.

                      In any case, we'll only be able to be sure it works or doesn't when it's at least usable against bots, for now it's hard to tell. I feel (but might totally be wrong!) that it's more an issue of balance than weapon function.
                      If it turns out my alt-fire isn't such a great idea, I kinda like that idea of using it to splash fuel around as Vailias said. Sort of like the Portal 2 paints, but flammable. And only ignite it at the best of times. I like the tactical potential of that.
                      I'm less interested in a grenade type of projectile, it seems more common.

                      A short update on my prototype : I managed to add damage to both fire and alt-fire, and a fairly good approximation of the damage area of the flames. Thankfully I managed to do that without attaching my damage volumes to individual particles, which probably would have been difficult (if at all possible without digging into the code...). Now the only thing left for me to do before I share it is try to get the weapon attachment to behave correctly so you can see the other players' flames where they should be. While it's only a cosmetic issue, I'd like to solve that problem first. It's given me quite some trouble, but I'll still try to figure it out for a few days. More on that in a second post.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Some people just want to watch the world burn....

                        How is the particle fx cost, seems like it could kind of slow things down with a full level and players.

                        UT4 modding discussion: irc.globalgamers.net #UTModders
                        Contrib Digest | UT2341 - Henrik's UT4 Dev Blog | Twitter

                        Comment


                          #13
                          So, the attachment problem.

                          While movement is replicated, aim doesn't seem to be. I'm not sure if it's meant to be so, or if it only a byproduct of the early stages of the code. I tried to get around that limitation with the following nodes, which is the closest I got it to actually working :
                          (Note : I didn't use the MuzzleFlash/Fire Effect parameters in Default, as those didn't seem to work - see next post. Instead I parented my flame effect to the attachment mesh.)

                          In FlameJump, based on UTWeapon


                          In FlameJump_Attachment, based on UTWeaponAttachment


                          When using a dedicated server, it doesn't work. The other player's flames are always horizontal:


                          When using a listen server, clients are almost displayed as they should (although the rotation of the gun seems to be in discrete steps - about 5° - instead of continuous, for some reason):


                          However, on the server window, things get funky:


                          As you can see, two weapons are present. As if the client and server representations coexisted on the same window, but it's interacting with the wrong one, since the one that gets rotated isn't the one spouting flames.
                          I'm fairly new to the networking aspects (but also from what I gathered, they're not yet 100% BP-friendly), so there's a good chance I'm doing something wrong. Where is the question...

                          Also, when I try to main-fire client weapons in a listen server configuration, I get this error:

                          (This refers to the UTOwner getter in FlameJump BP graph above. Funnily, alt-fire also uses a UTOwner getter in the same BP, but doesn't throw an error.)
                          Somehow, I presume this might be linked to the fact that it's moving a second gun attachment, and not the one that actually spouts fire. But definitely not sure about that one.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            One more technical post, feel free to skip it if this bores you :

                            Trying to solve that "particle effect doesn't activate on the attachment", I stumbled onto something that baffles me:

                            I looked into the ShockRifle attachment as it seems to work:


                            So, there's this Particle System, but it's listed as Native, and I can't access its parameters in the Details tab:


                            This should mean it'd be created in the contructor of UTWeaponAttachment (.cpp file), but it isn't.

                            If I try to simply change the particle effect associated with the MuzzleFlash and Fire Effect in the Defaults of that same ShockRifle attachment, and then compile, boom, away it goes:


                            And then if I create a new one, change to my particle effect, it doesn't work in the client/server window anymore... Very strange.

                            ---

                            And extra weirdness : if I try to copy the ShockRifle weapon itself, then save it, I get this:


                            (It seems to refer to a particle system component that is external to the BP? That doesn't make sense to me?)

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by HenrikRyosa View Post
                              Some people just want to watch the world burn....

                              How is the particle fx cost, seems like it could kind of slow things down with a full level and players.
                              The particles are client side only, and as you can see below, the actual "damage particles", which are replicated over the net, are much less numerous.


                              No idea if that would be too much for the network to handle, but I kind of doubt it. (That's just my non-educated guess, and might be wishful thinking. )

                              As for the actual fire effect, the one I use here has only about 500 particles.
                              I'm not sure how that would scale with, say, 10 players all using it at the same time, but from the demos of UE4 I saw 5-10k GPU particles don't seem to be that much.

                              (My fire effect is based of the P_Fire that's included in the starter content. I turned off the smoke, sparks and embers that came with it, and especially the dynamic light nodes that spawned with each particle. The latter did kill performance big time. But what's left seem to be absolutely no problem for my half-venerable GTX560Ti to handle... And it's not even GPU particles!)

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