Zep's Dreamland Complete!
Ultio

Hey everyone. This is the day (most of) you have been waiting for for quite some time. Zep's Dreamland is now complete. :o:o:o
That's right, I said; it's done. It's finished! A completed version is now available at the site. Go check it out. Let me know what you think. Have fun. Make some levels. Send them to me. :)

For anyone that doesn't know; Zep's Dreamland is a block-puzzler game I've been working on for over a year now. It's finally come to completion. Here's a description.

Quote:

*picture of zep*
Meet Zep! You control Zep throughout the game. The game consists of navigating Zep throughout a level to reach a certain location which allows him to advance to the next level. This is not such an easy task, however. Many obstacles will be in your path, and it is up to you to determine the best (and sometimes only way) to get around them. Zep has the ability to create special "blocks" by using the life energy from the ground he is standing on. By building the blocks in specific patterns, Zep can alter the landscape to his ability thus allowing him to reach his goal! Again, not everything is as it seems. Zep cannot build blocks while standing on top of just anything. There are many types of ground that restrict Zep's building ability. In addition to being able to create these special blocks, Zep can also destroy them.

On one very quiet and wonderful night Zep falls asleep and has quite a strange dream. He is trapped in a dreamland where almost anything goes! As much as he wants to wake up, he cannot; unless he travels completely through it, visiting each different section he dreams up. In his dreams, Zep has very special abilities which allow him to create blocks which will help him along through his dreampt-up world. What kind of special places does Zep hold dear? Traveling deeper and deeper into Zep's Dreamland reveals more and more obstacles as his imagination runs wild!

Alright everyone, so go to the site and download the game, and have fun! So far there's only one "bug" in the game, which is described in a file along with the archive. If any of you run into any problems, please email me and let me know. I've done the most I can to ensure that this is a smooth process with little or no bugs at release time.

Thanks everyone for your support, and enjoy!
Zep's Dreamland Project Page
LoomSoft.net

Steve Terry

OMG OMG OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Yay Zep's is finally here \o/
Unfortunately I'll have to wait until after work to play it :( but I can hardly wait.

Ultio

Well, I'm glad to see you're excited. I'm excited too, but that sad thing is that it's a different kind of excited. Just excited it's done, and happy about my accomplishment. Sometimes it feels a little sad knowing I'm not going to be able to play it and experience it in the same way as you guys will. I wish I could erase my memory for a few hours and play it, just to see what I would think of it if I didn't have any recollection that I actually made the game. ;D

Radagar

You mean you can actually 'finish' a program???

boggle

I thought they just kept going until you got lost in the code and gave up... Hmm, I've apparently been doing something wrong.

Congrats though =)

MiquelFire

Tutorials seem broke. Otherwise, I have to wait until I'm home and can spend more time with it.;D

Ceniza

YAY! YAY!! YAY!!! YAY!!!!!!!!1~ \o/

Finally!!!

I know you know I am in level 12 atm.

Level 10 almost beats me (just like the first time I tried Zep's Dreamland), level 11 was easy, but 12... I'll surely get a headache with it :)

Zep's Dreamland final release would come someday, and today is the day. Pretty nice work Ultio.

Remember to release a compilable source for all the "I'm so 1337 'cause I use Linux" community.

Well, /me is back to apt-get upgrade :P

Ultio

MiquelFire, I noticed the tutorials were broken. The Tutorials have now been fixed. Just a little bug that was easily removed. Redownload if you really must see the tutorials. :)

Good job Cen, but the first 10 levels are the same exact thing from the Test Demos. No credit for you!;)

paranoima

YAY \O/ YAY
I had to play it before I could post about it. I've been anxiously awaiting the release of this game. My brain turned to jelly at level 34 : "Planning required".

Hats off to Loomsoft for creating a great game. On a side note, now I won't be able to release a playable demo of my ultra sekrit projact before the end of the year, as I will be to involved in playing this game ;D

nonnus29

Very nice, very polished game. Would make a good gba game if you choose to port it...

Ultio

:) I've been tinkering with GBA programming. It's a possibility. Probably won't be the first gba thing I do... but it would be awesome!

Derezo

Awesome. Glad to see it's complete, and very polished.... but I planned on going to sleep tonight... aww.. :'(

Well, I'd play more but I gotta go christmas shopping. The joy. On level 8. :)

Chris Katko

Come to think of it, it would make a very good GBA game. I can think of a few areas that do need polished though.

If I remember correctly, the mainmenu fades in too quickly from the logo. The text could use some antialiasing. And it needs some tweaking in general. Oh! And the save/load colors make it hard to tell what bar is highlighted when there is only two bars. Stuff like that.

But a very good game nonetheless! I'm currently at level 10 or so.

[edit] Ah, 2 posts hit while I wrote.

spellcaster

Great game.
It's look nice, the game idea is fun and the polish is superb.
Just one thing: the music is not on par with the gfx. I had to mute my headphones even bore I made it through the first level. ;)

I thought the tutorial was kinda long, but depending on your target audience it might be just right.

I liked th puzzles, but they got repetitive quickly. You could try to add a sokoban element by introducing moveable blocks (blocks which can be pushed) - on the other hand, the game is fun the way it is already, so there's no need to add more to it.

Final words: change the music, and I'll give you 5 stars ;)

Ultio

Well, you can change the music yourself! :) That's part of the whole reason why there's the option to put in your own songs, so you don't have to listen to the music it comes with. IMO that's one of the most annoying parts of ANY puzzle game. Even if the music is good it will get annoying and repetitive. That's why this feature is there. :)

I'm hoping you already knew about it! And, are you any good at writing music? :-D It's hard to find good freeware music unless you just write it yourself, like I did. I thought I did a half-decent job.

As for the tutorials, they are meant to explain everything. I've had a lot of people play the game and still not fully understand why they could not do some of the things they couldn't do, or simply didn't understand how to play at all. I wanted to make sure it covers everything. They are not a required element of the game, anyways. Users can opt to just skip them.

Thank you for your critique.

nonnus29

This was the first time I played the game (didn't play the demo) and I went to level 13 before laying off. Man, this game was exercising some neurons I don't think I've ever used! I mean I could literally feel it, almost like a headache; did anyone else experience this? Very odd...

Matthew Leverton

Beat some levels. Hit ESC to go back to the menu. Click continue. Whoops, wrong option. Hit back. Resume has disappeared! Not good. :'(

Ultio

Looks like I have something to fix. There will be a 1.01 after all. :)

Sorry about that. Maybe everyone should play it safe and save on every level? :-D

Matthew Leverton

Another thing!!! (heh) Play a tutorial. Hit ESC, because you don't feel like really doing it. Then, resume your game. The tutorial kicks back in. I press right... "NO Don't go there!" I thought maybe it'd be a great secret, and he'd start telling me what to do. But no. I was stuck just getting yelled at all over the place. :(

Edit: Picture Proof. :-X

raist0069

I love puzzle games. Very good job here.

Ultio

Hmm, Matthew, that shouldn't happen. I'm pretty sure I put in code so that you cannot resume a tutorial, and have to start it over once you've watched one. I think what happened is I added in the "resume" code and never made an exception for calling that after watching a tutorial. :)

Very easily fixed. Now that's two things on my list. I guess Zep can be a jerk sometimes and not let you complete the levels. ;D

Peter Hull

I agree with Spelly - the tutorial is too long and slow. Surely no-one is so dumb that they need 'move right' and 'move left' to be explained as two separate things? And statements like "Tunnels are pretty simple, really, they are just literally tunnels" - no need.

I also noticed that after doing all 4 sections of the tut and completing level 1, the time/steps/blocks formed screen seemed to include all the tutorial, too (12 minutes to finish level 1?)

Having said that, it's a great game that looks and plays really well. Congratulations! I look forward to wasting lots of time on it.

Pete

Trezker

\o/ ZEP ZEP ZEP ZEP ZEP \o/
This is TEH ROCKS!!!!
\o/ ZEP ZEP ZEP ZEP ZEP \o/

Morten Bendix

Congratulation on completing it, and a polished game indeed. I agree, the tutorial is a bit slow, but I'll live :) . The editor is a nice touch.

Chris Katko

I forgot to mention this. I must compliment the music! Sure, it'll get old after awhile, but I liked it from a musicians perspective. You just need more. :)

"Rain" sounds like something straight out of cronotrigger (like that sky palace or something). "Unda" is just cool. :) "Falling Dreams" is so cute sounding it's sweet. :)

What program do you use to compose it? I'm currently using NoteWorthy for MIDIs and Modplug Tracker for modules.

23yrold3yrold
Quote:

"Rain" sounds like something straight out of cronotrigger (like that sky palace or something).

I haven't had a chance to try the game due to packing (I'll give it a whirl in Ontario) but the original demo used Chrono Trigger music, so maybe it sounds like it's from CT because it is ;)

Derezo

I take it you're coming over for christmas, 23?
I must prepare everything! I've been waiting for this day since last christmas!!! ;)

Anyway. I came to this thread.. because I am stuck on level 12...........any tips? :P
I thought.. maybe if I block the portal, then go through the other side, it might do something new... but I can't see how that's possible.

Chris Katko

23: I know cronotrigger music, it's not. He said he did his own. IIRC, in this very thread.

Ceniza

Ultio: Is level 40 supposed to be impossible?

Really, I've been trying a lot of things and cannot find a way to finish it or even get thru the first tunnel/portal.

The big problem is that I didn't save level 40 and there was a brownout so I must start from level 37 again :/

Once again, pretty nice work.

About the "music", I cannot say, I have MIDI off and I've never felt any interest in MIDI "music".

BTW, continue visiting us @ #allegro :)

ReyBrujo

Typo in third tutorial: "See? I could not build and Up Block while standing..." (should be an instead of and).
Just wondering... I was trying the tutorial until the third one, then pressed ESC and NEW. The first level brought statistics like Time Spent: 19', blocks created 29, destroyed 14, restart 4... I didn't do it!

Great game. I am now stuck at level 12. A pity I am not good with these kind of games :P But got me thinking in this darn summer heat for some hours. Congrats!

Dustin Dettmer
Quote:

Known Issues
============

Version 1.0:
- On some systems with specific settings level sets will not show up on the Level Set Selection screen whether or not they are in the appropriate folder or not. I have only encountered this with one single system. If you entounter this on your system, please, make sure to email me with your system specs, including your Operating System, as well as your File System type, along with all other general info (ram, processor, etc).

I got this error when trying to cheat ::). i couldnt beat level 17 so i renamed 17 to 16 and 16 to 17. maybe the one computer that this is happening on did the same thing?

EDIT: tho it isnt much use here, ill say it anyway:

92 RAM, celeron win 98 FE. Im pretty sure its FAT32... if u really wanna kno i can figure out for sure.

EDIT: Puzzle games drive me crazy to the point where i cant stop. One time when i installed knopix on my computer, i found a puzzle game that had a marble thing that you controled with the mouse and had to do crazy puzzles that were insanely hard. I spent about a week straight doing 60 or so really really hard levels. ugh. well as a biproduct im pretty good at them :).

So far its looking like a great game, except that the plot is sort of lost as you go through the levels. maybe just a little thing that shows zep and some text saying "after wandering through dream portals for a few hours, zep finds himself at a large staircase" or something. it would add a lot to the game. bring it from addictive to addictive and ...whats the word... story based, interactive, intresting.... and could also use support for other music types besides just midi. that is a bunch of work tho and maybe u should just leave it the way it is.

But, its still a GREAT game :D:)8-)

Inphernic

Same as Ceniza - level 40 seems impossible. There just doesn't seem to be any way to reach the first portal.

A really nice and polished game. A nice brain exercise for 2-4 hours (the levels aren't that hard and they run out quickly :(). Can't comment on the music because this computer doesn't have speakers. :)

Dustin Dettmer

ok, i finished the game now. Well except for 32, 38, 40, and the credit level. 40 and the credit level are impossible tho.

32 and 38 i just couldnt get :P. just wanna say it one more time, this is definetely a great game:)

EDIT: I'd love to make some levels except the editor is giving me an error saying i need a 15bit graphics card:p. maybe u could provide an editor for us low end users that doesnt need the extra vram?

Kanzure

Nice game, very addictive..Curse you. I was sleeping last night, and I couldn't get over the fact that I didn't get past level 10...ugh..Worthless addictions.

Nice game, great music. Sequal?

Ultio

Ok. A lot of replies as I was gone for all of yesterday. :) I'm going to try to get to everyone.

Quote:

Surely no-one is so dumb that they need 'move right' and 'move left' to be explained as two separate things? And statements like "Tunnels are pretty simple, really, they are just literally tunnels" - no need.

What about my little 9 year old sister? It would help her. I intended the game to be playable for little children (if there were easy enough levels created). I wanted to explain everything in the tutorials, and moving left and right is considered everything. Tutorials alway seem to be boring and long when you understand half the stuff that's being explained; but when you don't know anything they can be very informative.

Quote:

I also noticed that after doing all 4 sections of the tut and completing level 1, the time/steps/blocks formed screen seemed to include all the tutorial, too (12 minutes to finish level 1?)

That's definitely a bug where the counters from the tutorial levels are just appended onto the main game when you start. Easily fixed. Just need to reset the counters. Thanks for that bit of info. :)

Etwinox said:

What program do you use to compose it? I'm currently using NoteWorthy for MIDIs and Modplug Tracker for modules.

I'm glad you liked the music. Rain, Unda, and Falling Dreams were all written years ago by myself using a freeware midi composition program called Massiva. It is no longer freeware, but it's a good program nonetheless. For some of the other midi's I just composed them using ModPlug Tracker with midi instruments and then outputted into midi format. ;)

And all of the music is original. Stated in this same thread as well as in the readme file. But! If you do wish to hear real Chrono Trigger music, just plop a few midi files in the folder. TaaDaa!

Ceniza said:

Ultio: Is level 40 supposed to be impossible?

Yes, it's beatable. :) They all are. What kind of question is that? :D For level 40, there's a lot of backtracking involved, as well as building "bridges" to allow yourself to actually backtrack. Bridges which then will be destroyed later on so you can get through the tunnels. Something like that. ;D

ReyBrujo said:

Typo in third tutorial: "See? I could not build and Up Block while standing..." (should be an instead of and).

Yep. Definitely a typo. And as for the incorrect level stats, that's due to the tutorial and is addressed earlier in my post.

Dustin Dettmer said:

I got this error when trying to cheat . i couldnt beat level 17 so i renamed 17 to 16 and 16 to 17. maybe the one computer that this is happening on did the same thing?

Renaming the levels has nothing to do with incorrect level sets. Each level contains information inside it as to what level it is and what level comes after it. If you simply change the name of the level, it will load things all wrong and incorrectly. :)

Quote:

I'd love to make some levels except the editor is giving me an error saying i need a 15bit graphics card:p. maybe u could provide an editor for us low end users that doesnt need the extra vram?

I thought this would come up. I'm assuming it won't run because your graphics card doesn't support a 800x600 windowed mode program in that graphics setting. There is hope, though. I anticipated this and made a fullscreen version of the editor (kind of hidden). Simply create a shortcut to the editor and append "-f" to the comman-line that calls it. Then the editor will run in fullscreened mode. :) Hope it works.

Well guys, thanks for all your comments. I'm so glad to see ZD had a nice and positive launch, despite some of the hidden bugs that lurk around in there. Once the bug finding starts to die down I will release a patch which will contain fixes for all of them; as they are pretty easily fixable.

I realize that some people have some issues with things such as the tutorial length, music, etc, but this is something that could really be debated forever. Some people think the tutorial is fine, while others do not. Same for the music, etc etc. I guess it's just one of those, you can't please everybody things. Just remember, you can replace the music with your own; and you aren't required to watch the tutorials. So is it really all that bad? :) I hope not. I'm glad you're all enjoying the game. Some of you have already beat it by now, I'm betting (without cheating). Shame on you. All that work to be defeated in a few measly days. Hehe. Well, that's what the editor is for.

Everyone, feel free to make some levels and let me know about it. I would be glad to put some new level sets up on my site to continue Zep's Journey. And for those of you who HAVE completed the game; what did you think of the ending? Thoughts, comments? Feel free to PM me about if it will contain any kind of spoiler info.

EDIT:

Quote:

Nice game, great music. Sequal?

There may not be a Zep's Dreamland II, but rest assured; you will definitely see Zep in another one of my games in the future. ;D

Kanzure
Quote:

There may not be a Zep's Dreamland II, but rest assured; you will definitely see Zep in another one of my games in the future.

Mmm...I can smell a "Zep vs. Kirby" comming along here...:P

Marcello
Quote:

What about my little 9 year old sister? It would help her.

My brother beat sonic 2 and 3 at 6~7 without any tutorials, plus numerous other games through emulation... Maybe your "little" sister is really slow? (no offense)

Edit: for that matter, he couldn't read when he started playing all these games. Now that he can read (he's 8) he plays rpg's (pokemon, zelda, some old sega games) and stuff.

Marcello

Ultio

Sonic doesn't need any instructions, you just run to the right. ;) Maybe using my sister was a bad example; but whatever. Instructions should contain everything. That's just how I see it.

Inphernic

I still fail to see how to advance in level 40.

Edit: Removed the description and attachment for making it easier to resist the temptation.. ;)

Ultio

I'm going to keep my mouth shut on this one. :) Maybe I'll post more hints, but I want you guys to figure it out without my help. ;)

It IS beatable. Keep trying.

Per Larsson

Argh.. this is driving me insane.

I agree with Inphernic. Level 40 is unbeatable, unless you are supposed to use some undocumented feature or something. Some kind of hint would be nice! I have an exam tomorrow, and i should study, but I just sit and stare at that last level.>:(

Ceniza
Ultio said:

It IS beatable.

Ok, good, you say it IS beatable.

Proposition: Beat it yourself (I suppose you actually know how to do it) and attach a pic of Zep just before leaving the level thru the exit portal/tunnel without cheating. (The pic doesn't need to include all the screen, just enough to know that's the level and you're just at one step of beating it.)

Give us some hope :'(

Ultio

What good would that do you? My betatesters could beat it :) You have to be able to. I can give you a hint but I don't want to spoil it for anyone. PM me if you want it. ;D

Kanzure
Loomsoft.net said:

The lead teammember from this group is currently working on the art for Zep's Dreamland.

No wonder, I thought I noticed some similarity between Zep's Dreamland and Free Lunch Design's games. :) They are all high quality, thats for sure.

Ultio

Yep, that's right. Johan was kind enough to do all of the tileart for the game (minus little Zep). Totally awesome. There's a thread on allegro.cc where it all started. Kind of ironic, I wasn't even looking for an artist at the time. ;)

Dustin Dettmer
Quote:

Renaming the levels has nothing to do with incorrect level sets. Each level contains information inside it as to what level it is and what level comes after it. If you simply change the name of the level, it will load things all wrong and incorrectly.

heh, ya i figured that out eventually, or even simplier just change the level in the save file... But anyway, my point was that in your "Known Issues" file you had the error:

Quote:

Known Issues
============

Version 1.0:
- On some systems with specific settings level sets will not show up on the Level Set Selection screen whether or not they are in the appropriate folder or not. I have only encountered this with one single system. If you entounter this on your system, please, make sure to email me with your system specs, including your Operating System, as well as your File System type, along with all other general info (ram, processor, etc).

could the problem just have been the level files were tampered with? or did it happen after reinstalling aswell?

Ultio

The bug doesn't affect the original levels. It only affects additional level sets. If a level set exists, the engine simply will not find it. It has nothing to do with where the game is located because it checks recursively from the game's location downward. It uses no absolute pathing.

Dustin Dettmer

gah ok level 40 is really starting to get to me now :P, I see that block... but i just cant get to it!

GameCreator

I'm on level 33.
Neat game.

23yrold3yrold

I've only bothered playing as far as Level 15 so far, but my compliments to the chef as far as level design goes 8-) Very professional; someone nominate this bugger for the AAA ...

Marcello

I'll nominate it, but I don't know how.

Marcello

paranoima

I've attached a (poor quality) jpeg that shows some of the stuff I'm talking about in this post.

I've been working on lvl 40 now for the better part of my weekend (and a little into my monday ;D). I know LoomSoft said the level is beatable, but my feeble brain can not see the solution. As you may or may not make out in my crude drawings, I've tried several ways to complete the bridge needed to reach the teleport marked #1 in my picture. However the crucial piece to complete this bridge, requires you to place zep on the red 'no up' build block and build a <--> block. By doing this you become trapped in the right side of the maze/puzzle with no way to get out.

Also, assuming there is some way to get to teleport 1, I don't see a way to get to teleport 2. If you start a teleport 2 and work your way backwards, you hit an impassable barrier, that I marked with light blue circle.

I don't suppose LoomSoft would be willing to give us a hint as to how we could finish that bridge or if that is in fact what we are supposed to do.

Other than being stuck >:( on this level for 3 days, I've really enjoyed the game.

Ultio

Hold on a second there paranoima. I think something may actually be messed up with my level... What makes me think of this is the little circled area in the middle where the two tunnels meet. That should definitely not be there, unless there's something weird I'm missing in my own level. I've tried looking back to older versions and backups of my levels, but since 40 was the last one I made, I don't have many backups of it. One of the older versions only works with an older version of the game that I'm going to have to dig up somewhere. I want to compare the older versioned one to the distro'ed one. Something is definitely wrong here.

I know when I saved the level originally, it was beatable. This version may actually not be beatable, which is strange. I remember double playing level 40 just to make sure it worked. I'll get back to you guys on this one. Take a break from level 40. :) If you want to see the ending, just edit it so it's easy to beat. :-D Hehe. I'll see what I can come up with.

And I'm deeply sorry for saying it WAS beatable if in fact it is not. I'm hoping it was just a glitch with my saving system that somehow corrupted the level when I was changing/adding different info to the level structure.

[EDIT]
I took a look at the older versions of my level 40. Apparantly all of my older versions are the same thing. My editor must have mangled it before I even started saving backups of it. I'm going to work on a revised level 40 that is actually beatable. You will all probably laugh because it will be so easy. ;D

I hope to have it up by sometime tonight. If not, tomorrow morning or afternoon. Sorry about there being an unbeatable level. I don't know how that happened! :-/

Dustin Dettmer

hahahha, nice ending

EDIT: now iget y the credits level was so simple

Carrus85

Just write a recursive level-checking algorythm... (Make sure it is designed to give you how to complete the level). That way you can ensure that it doesn't happen again. :)

Derezo

Something that would be cool and useful would be a script that goes through the level making sure it's beatable... and telling you the minimum steps, blocks, etc.

Would be nice to see how close you were to a perfect score. :)

[Level 38 now BTW]

[edit]
;D.. looks like carrus beat me to the idea.

Carrus85

Woohoo! I beat you to an idea! HEHEHEHEHE!!!!!

It wouldn't be that hard, it would just be a very complicated implementation of A*, right? You could integrate it into both the editor and the game to either validate the level, or tell you the best score possible on that level. You could even do some timing/tweaking to get some sort of best time possible on level value. (or what some games refer to as "Par Time")

I personally think this would be a good move for the game. Using this, you could potentially implement high-score tables and such for the levels.

Edit... Wow, yet another strange idea... you could generate completely random levels (literally, the script just randomly assigns whatever tiles to where-ever places, randomly) and have the script validate it... Just have it do that over and over and over again, until it finds a valid level. Save that level, and repeat. There you go! Instant level generator!

Edit2: The only problem with this is that the iterations required to get a level generator would be huge. But hey, if your computer isn't doing anything better, why not? Just let it work on something/chew on something in it's free time.

You could then release the output as the "computer generated random level" mapset.

Ultio

That's a good idea to make level generation random, and automatic, but that could obviously lead to stupid levels where the exit teleport is one tile next to Zep. :)

Also, making an algorithm that checks if levels are beatable is, in itself, a good idea. It would be hard to implement as there's so many options on how to build things. It would eat up too much ram. Also, to use it to check for the BEST solution would be kind of insane. I would literally have to run it about a million times, simply because there are a million different ways to beat a level. Zep could simply keep on creating/destroying one block in a single spot and then simply go to the end. It would be hard to make a level checker that does that

As for the game itself, I've updated it to version 1.01. You can now redownload a whole new archive, or patch it yourself using the alternate download. It contains a new beatable version of level 40, as well as addresses all of the bugs found here in this thread.

Enjoy!

Carrus85

While the argument about the creating/destroying blocks is true, you could implement some form of redunancy checking in your A* algo, to help reduce the number of iterations. Such as Zep Building a block, and then immediately destroying it afterword, would be redundant (and pointless at the same time.) As would be creating two of the same blocks and destroying them (two <-|-> blocks right next to each other, and erasing them.)

It would take a while to remove all of the redundant moves from the script. However, it is definately possible to do.

Ultio

What about creating a block and coming back to it later in order to destroy it? It just seems like A* would be good for getting around little bumps in the way, but when teleporting and backtracking as well as paths that lead in one direction but not the other is introduced; it becomes a lot more complicated.

I don't think my programming skills are that proficient to tackle something so adanced. It would be nice, though. :)

Paul Pridham

You could script the testing of each level using replays. If a replay macro failed to complete, then there was an error in the level. You'd know where it happened too, since you can keep track of how far the replay got.

Ultio

Apparantly now the tutorials are completely broken. I'm going to fix it up quickly.

[Edit]
And like that, they're fixed. Just a little typo in my source. Heh. Anyways, it's in the same executable. I hope not too many people downloaded the new one. Simply the patch will fix it, anyways, just a 200k download.

Thomas Fjellstrom

What I find funny, is I never got past the last level in the demo ;)

Steve Terry

Ultio you are a very very evil man... I'm on level 22? but can't get past it because it's the level where you have to break your way out of two sets of prebuilt blocks. You know the level where you have to remove all the blocks on both sides of the level to get to the portal. Still I think it's brilliant in some of the ways you have to beat a level though, pretty tricky.

Ultio

Thomas, yes level 10 is a difficult one. Sometimes I wonder how I made the levels so hard at all!

Steve, Yes, that's one of the more annoying levels. I didn't want to put in too many of those, because eventually it becomes a trial and error game, and most players have told me: if the rest of the levels are like 22, you suck. ;)

And it's true. That's the only level like that. I just had to do it, though. Enjoy. It's not super difficult.

So, who else wants to be evil and make some levels? ;-D Has anyone tried the editor? Comments?

Inphernic

A test play function in the editor would be nice.

edit: More teleports.

edit2: Nm, for some reason setting teleports just didn't work for a while. :o

edit3: Moving a block of stuff around in the map would be nice.

edit4: Setting up a teleport at some locations is impossible, even though there seems to be nothing blocking. Usually setting it to an adjacent location works, but..

edit5: Seemingly transparent "blocks" picked from the palette are actually treated as blocks in game. It would be more convenient to accept these as the "Del" tool as well.

Thomas Fjellstrom

Ultio: Untill I get around to do "The Great HardDrive Swap" of 2003/2004 I don't have anywhere to put windows, so a linux version would rule :D, but even If I had windows, a linux version would still rule ;) (I hate rebooting, I usually have things running that I want to keep running ;))

Ultio
Quote:

edit4: Setting up a teleport at some locations is impossible, even though there seems to be nothing blocking. Usually setting it to an adjacent location works, but..

Sure you don't have any invisible blocked tiles anywhere? :)

Inphernic

That might just be it, and that I really don't like either (the invisible blocks).

Ultio

Could make for interesting levels if the person sees fit. You can turn on the lettering for the block types to see what blocks are where. :)

Inphernic

Does not make for interesting levels if it's not intentional. :P

I said:

Seemingly transparent "blocks" picked from the palette are actually treated as blocks in game. It would be more convenient to accept these as the "Del" tool as well.

Now I've spent the last 15 minutes deleting unintentional invisible blocks from this one level, retrying, deleting again, retrying.. ::)

Ultio

You don't need to test the level. There's a key you can press to turn on lettering for each tile in the map (in the editor) that will show BT, TT, or nothing in the upper left hand of the tile signifying Blocked Tile, Trans Tile, and nothing, repsectively. :)

Steve Terry

heh I did get through one tower of blocks, made it to the other side, went the wrong way, got stuck ... DOH!!! Restarted and now can't figure out what I did to get past the first set :P

Ultio

What a pain in the butt, huh? I intentionally did that.

Steve Terry

jo0 SuXX0rz!!!
J/K ;D

Inphernic

Here goes:

The level

Unzip in data/levels/something. Start game, Options, Load level set, yayy~

It's not hard.. just a bit messy. :)

Ultio

Awesomely difficult level. I really like how you did it! You used a cool aspect of the game I didn't use in my own levels. Really neat. (Scrolling forest background seems kind of strange, though. ;))

Took me about 10 minutes to beat :) I wonder if anyone else can beat that? I don't know how many times I restarted, but this one is definitely a difficult one, at least to me; since all of my levels are easy to me.

Make more, make more. Make a level set. I'll host it! :)

Inphernic

A level pack of 4 levels.

The first two are child's play. The last one will make you cry blood. Guaranteed. ;)

Skalle

HA inphernic. I beat the chaos maze!!!!
It didn't make me cry blood, but it was sure hard.

Kanzure

Hey, in ZD 1.2, or whatever, can we get Alex (Alex4 - FLD) to appear (playable character?)? :D That would be interesting....

Dustin Dettmer

The chaos maze whould be a lot harder if instead of one red block and one sideways block, there were two red blocks.

The editor: Its not working:(:'( I really really (edit: really really) want to make some levels but its giving me the error that i need a 15bit grapiphics card (im assuming this means set_gfx_mode failed?) Could you come out with another revision that has an option to set the SCREEN_W/SCREEN_H at smaller numbers, (you can just do stretch blit as a double buffer, if need be:P) or if the map maker is in windowed mode, have an option for full screen? thanks

23yrold3yrold

Level 17 pisses me off >:( ...

EDIT: nm; I beat it :P

EDIT2:

Quote:

Steve, Yes, that's one of the more annoying levels. I didn't want to put in too many of those, because eventually it becomes a trial and error game, and most players have told me: if the rest of the levels are like 22, you suck.

And it's true. That's the only level like that. I just had to do it, though. Enjoy. It's not super difficult.

Bah. Level 22 and 23 were cool 8-) I was waiting for levels like that to crop up ...

Inphernic
Quote:

The chaos maze whould be a lot harder if instead of one red block and one sideways block, there were two red blocks.

And impossible. ::) I don't feel like reorganizing all the teleports again. That levelset isn't worth hosting though.. maybe if I get around to make more levels to it. :)

Ultio

Dustin, I replied this to you in a recent post. :) There is a way to run it fullscreen.

Quote:

I thought this would come up. I'm assuming it won't run because your graphics card doesn't support a 800x600 windowed mode program in that graphics setting. There is hope, though. I anticipated this and made a fullscreen version of the editor (kind of hidden). Simply create a shortcut to the editor and append "-f" to the comman-line that calls it. Then the editor will run in fullscreened mode. Hope it works.

Inph, I didn't get a chance to try out your level set, but I'm definitely going to give it a go sometime after christmas. Right now I'm kind of booked. ;)

Quote:

Bah. Level 22 and 23 were cool I was waiting for levels like that to crop up ...

Really? You like the trial-and-error style levels? :) Make some more. Those are pretty easy to make. Maybe I'll make a "Prebuilt Hell" level set. ;D

Dustin Dettmer
Quote:

Dustin, I replied this to you in a recent post. There is a way to run it fullscreen

tight, thanks!

Quote:

Really? You like the trial-and-error style levels? Make some more. Those are pretty easy to make. Maybe I'll make a "Prebuilt Hell" level set.


ahh!

23yrold3yrold

I'm pretty sure I cheated on Level 25 :) ...

Derezo

There's a few levels where I felt like I cheated.
There'd be like 6 portals, and I'd only use 2 to beat it. Really confused me. Can't remember the levels exactly, but Rob (friend watching) said "uhh, ooookkkkaaaayyyyy....." :P

Dustin Dettmer

Made a level:) Itll probably be really confusing at first, but once u get it its easy.

I also added a saved game that will open the level up for you, just unzip this into the main zeps dreamland directory (C:\program files\zeps dreamland\)

tell me what you think:)

EDIT: i cheated on 32 and 38... just changed the level i was on in the saved game.. :P

Steve++

I've got version 1.01.

It has bugs. Sound effects don't finish playing. A small part keeps looping; really annoying. Also the first tutorial doesn't load for some reason. A windows dialogue box appears indicating it cannot load the tutorial file.

Also, i'm stuck in level 8!! Hints?

Steve Terry

Haven't cheated yet and made it to level 34... which confuses me a lot. The title says it all "Some planning required". It looks like two possible ways to make it into the portal but you get stuck one way and can't go back through the teleporter when you go the other way because blocks are in the way :( I think I'll have to "plan" a bit more to beat that level;D

Matthew Leverton

8: Build up in the middle to place a block, then go back down and come up on the right side.

34: It's much simpler than it looks. I believe I only had one restart on it. I don't think you really have to plan... it's more of just doing the only things that make sense. Those blasted "pre-built" were the only ones that required a lot of "planning". >:(

Ultio
Quote:

I've got version 1.01.

It has bugs. Sound effects don't finish playing. A small part keeps looping; really annoying. Also the first tutorial doesn't load for some reason. A windows dialogue box appears indicating it cannot load the tutorial file.

You must have downloaded it RIGHT when I uploaded it. :) I mistakenly took out the 1 in the end of the string which contains the location of the first tutorial. About 10 minutes later there was a reupload of verion 1.01 with that minor fix. Dang, you guys are fast.

As for the sound problem, I'm not sure what may be causing that. I do not get that effect when I play the game. If anyone else does, please let me know. It would be helpful.

Karadoc ~~

My 2c:
- Dieing should count as a restart.
- Save should be on the main menu.

Steve++

I just downloaded and installed it again. Still cannot load first tutorial map. Perhaps you could make a debug version of the executable (just something that makes a log of everything it's doing) so we can see what's happening.

EDIT: LEVEL 10 IS KILLING ME >:(

Trezker

All but level 40 was easy for me.
I haven't solved it yet, and I doubt I have what it takes 'cause it's pissing me off!

Matthew Leverton

You cannot solve level 40 from version 1.01? I thought it was very simplistic. I wasn't one of the unfortunate to try to beat the original level 40... ;)

Karadoc ~~
Quote:

I just downloaded and installed it again. Still
cannot load first tutorial map. Perhaps you could make a debug version of the executable (just something that makes a log of everything it's doing) so we can see what's happening.

Now that you mention it, I can't run tut1 either.
Look like the names of the files are mucked up in the .exe. (ie. the game is looking for the wrong files)
If I move tutorial1.map (or whatever it's called, I don't remember the exact names)
to tutorial.map, then the first tut will work for awhile. But there are still problems... In any case, the naming system inside the game seems to be a bit - wrong - ... :)

Ultio

I REuploaded (for the second time) the new 1.01 which should contain a working Tutorial #1. If it still fails, use Karadoc~~'s instructions, as they are correct. :)

Anyways, since this thread seems to be dying out now I would just like to say thank you to everyone for trying out my game. I'm glad you liked it so much, and if you're the level-making type, please, feel free. I would like to host some good level sets on my site. Unfortunately I don't think I would be up to making a good one as I'm beat from making the original 40. Hopefully someone will step up to the challenge! (At least, I hope so).

I would also like to thank everyone that helped me throughout the actual process of making the game, especially in the beginning. I know I was kind of "gone" in between Test Demo 3.3 and this actual release, but prior to TD3.3 you guys were a great help and your encouragement was greatly appreciated.

Thank you for your support, and enjoy. Also, if you haven't rated the game yet, please do so. I read all of the reviews and the comments do help. Since the review lenght is kind of short it gives me a different perspective on what you guys think of the game, since you have to jam it all into such a small spot.

Again, thanks! I couldn't have done it without the support of everyone who believed in Zep! ;)

aquasync

Finally got it yesterday. Nice that its only ~2m for us dial-up users, most games (i don't mean commercial ones) seem to be getting unnecessarily large.
There were a few things that were not perfect in the tutorial, it'd be nicer if there was maybe a slight pause after completing a target action. Like you're told to look up, so you press up, and a huge message box pops up instantly, and I can't even see if zep is looking up.
Also the restrictions tute stuffed up a little, and I was actually on a non-red square when i was asked to try and build a block.
Something else that'd be nice is a resume! I thought I saw somewhere here that it was possible. If i just escape to the main menu to changes keys etc, there is no option to continue :(.
The puzzles themselves are quite good, I'm up to ~20 now, and there's been some challenging ones.
The only thing I'd really ask to change if you could is to make the keys a little friendlier. If you hold up, then press right, then let go of up, he doesn't go right. That might not seem a big deal, but when I'm changing directions I often press both keys for a few seconds and I have to let go completely before continuing.
On the whole though, its fun and polished. When I've mastered it ;D I'll be sure to send in some levels.

Steve++

Ultio, can u please show some example sound-playing code so we can figure out why it doesn't quite work right on my PC? That would be great.

Ultio

aquasync:
As for the tutorials, yes I know Zep is a little anxious to tell you that you did everything correctly. :) Heh.

As for the problem with the restricted block building, I know there's a problem where when you can drop down and build a block out of place. Thanks for the info though.

As for the moving around, the up key can also be used for "secure" turning, instead of relying on the keypress delay which will allow you to turn around, if you hold up and turn Zep around, he will not move. This is something carried over from the very early release of the game as it was the ONLY way to turn Zep around without moving a tile space. I left it in there because personally I use up to turn around sometimes. I just find it easier than having to press the key too quickly.

Steve++:
Hopefully this helps:

1//Set up sound
2if (install_sound(DIGI_AUTODETECT, MIDI_AUTODETECT, NULL) != 0) // Initialize the sound card
3{
4 set_gfx_mode(GFX_TEXT,0,0,0,0);
5 allegro_message("Error initialising sound system\n%s\nProceeding without sound", allegro_error);
6}
7 
8//Set up the sound voices so that they can play a bunch at once
9reserve_voices(64, -1);
10set_volume_per_voice(2);
11 
12// All samples are played such like this. The numbers are the same. The only
13// things that change are the pointer to the
14// sample and the volume of the sound output
15play_sample((SAMPLE*)d_sounds[d_teleport_in].dat, sound_vol, 127, 1000, FALSE);

LSd016

mwahaha, hundreth post in this thread by me.

btw, good job.

amarillion

awesome. Great music. I'm only at level 10 yet, seems I have some catching up to do.

spellcaster

I showed Zep (and some other Allegro Programs) to some friends of mine, and they really liked what they saw :)

So, even a "normal" user likes Zep - so take the time and smile a bit. It's a neat game, youo managed to finish it and it seems like people like it.

Great work!

Ultio

Well, that's great! I'm really happy! :) This is my first game to be a big hit, if that's what you can call it. I'm just glad all of my programming works corretly, though. There's still some flaws in the game but overall it's pretty solid, I think. I'm taking that other people believe so, too, so that's GREAT!

I just hope it keeps a following and people start developing some awesome levels!

(5 pages of posts. Good lord!)

23yrold3yrold

I got as far as Level 34 before I left Ontario. Nice idea with the breaking blocks and the blocks that only let you travel in one direction :) Game got more interesting as it went on; that's the way it should be 8-)

Trezker

I missed that update before, sloppy of you to release with an unsolvable level 40 >:(

Anyway, once I got that down, it was easy :)
I'm not gonna bother with Inphernics levels, those are evil!

Mars

I just completed it. It was fun and had a very polished touch. I liked most of the puzzles, a little problem might be that easier and harder puzzles seem to alternate. It would be better if there was a gradually increasing level of difficulty although, of course, that's hard to determine objectively. Some times I could solve a level quite easily but was left with the feeling that I didn't choose the "right" solution... (e.g. level 35).

Two thumbs up!

kikabo

A great job, well done

It's good to have a tutorial, kids and lazy people (like me) can't be bothered with readme's - but I did have to look there for the save key (doh!) - I think it's been said before but this should be on the main menu.
And also probably said before - the stats from the first level include whatever you did in the tutorial.

excellent work.

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