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Tempus Infinity - Solo Levels

30 I Haven't Killed Anything Since 1485

Tips and Secrets

This level is pretty straightforward. You'll start in the intrahull space of the Pfhor ship. There are two central goo tanks divided by a hallway. Dive into one goo tank and swim towards the center, going around the yellow ledge. If you get hurt, swim up onto the yellow ledge, use the recharger, and jump back into the goo. Behind the yellow ledges you should find a 'goo wall'; swim through this and you will be in the central corridor. Head west. Open the door, keep heading west, open another door, etc. until you come into an open gantry. Keep heading west until you are looking out into space, where there are 4 enforcers staring back at you. Look up... you should find two circuits. Destroy both of them, and make sure to watch the enforcers get explosively decompressed.

Once you've completed this task, head southwest.

You should see a terminal hidden behind a force field. Try to reach the terminal; you'll get blown out into space by a massive EM pulse. Don't worry, the S'pht will save you by teleporting you to KMG-365.

Map Making Notes

I Haven't Killed Anyone Since 1485 arose out of plot necessity. Actually, it resulted from my own anal compulsion to attempt to fix everything in the plot remotely resembling a hole, or as much as possible given a plot that involved time travel, aliens altering human history, and one of the most famous men ever to live. Very near the completion of the scenario, I figured out that the amount of time (in _real time_) the player would need to complete the scenario up to the end (Mt. Vesuvius) was about 5 days. When I looked at Mike's level, I thought "There is no _way_ even an alien species could build this sort of installation in 5 days." So I approached Borzz, and probably took a couple months off his life by announcing that I had to make _another_ level. (It did take me a while to get around to the first two...)

I decided to put the player into the hospital (KMG-365, built by Borzz just to satisfy my crazy whim - editors note: which also required we come up with another chapter screen, to further pause the action) by having the Tycho/Marine AI blast the player out of an airlock in a massive thermonuclear pulse. James suggested Randall Shaw's liquid force field trick for the impulse out the door, and I added a complex series of solid, impassable clear walls for trapping the player in an immediate exit poly hanging in space outside the antenna complex.

The trick with the enforcers being blown out of their little hidey holes is another matter entirely, one that will haunt me for decades. Here is how they work:

 lustygoat: killed's enforcer thing works like this:
 lustygoat: (prepare for heniousness)
 Borzz: strapping down...
 lustygoat: in each column, there are four polys. the closest to the  enforcer is monster   
 impassible. Then, there is a tiny invisible S'pht who is set to hate Bobs and blow up when it 
 lustygoat: After that is a platform which is extended, so the S'pht can't  see what's in the next 
 poly, which is a tiny invisible Assimilated vacbob.
 lustygoat: That tiny invisible vacbob is intelligence 4 so it can only track out to the s'pht, and 
 not the enforcer, who distracts it if it is any smarter.
 lustygoat: ...also the vacbob attacks every 10 ticks, so it's really a nasty little mofo.
 Borzz: wow...
 lustygoat: the two invisible monsters are set to teleport in and activate when the player steps  
 on a trigger just inside the last door coming out of the main hull.
 lustygoat: ...there is some ammo sitting by a window to explain the teleport sound.
 lustygoat: the player comes in and those two little guys, in each column, activate.
 lustygoat: ...when the player hits the wires, the platforms open and the two attack each other, 
 blowing the **** out of the enforcers, who are not able to move because I reduced their 
 movement to 0.
 lustygoat: however, sometimes even that doesn't work.
 lustygoat: so after the player hits the wires, the spaces where the tiny monsters are... go 
 CRUSH. Just for redundancy.
 Borzz: they cant move -  but they blow out?
 lustygoat: Yes... they can't move under their own power, but I modified their external 
 velocity scale so they really fly. (Actually I think they're flying too much... sometimes they 
 go all the  way into the other airlock.
 Borzz: you realize you're gonna have to write this down when the questions come pouring in  
 ; )
 Borzz: mine did - hit the other side - and was delayed but flew.
 lustygoat: yes... sometimes the bob and s'pht don't pick up on each other right away.
 lustygoat: ... i tried putting more of em in there.... so there were 3 spht in each column... 
 didn't help. just got wacky.
 Borzz: quite hysterical effect...more than I imagined - thats for SURE.
 Borzz: mucho bivo...
 Borzz: ahhh
 Borzz: worked well
 lustygoat: yeah... wait till you see it call the new hard death sequence.
 lustygoat: That was FUN to make...
 Borzz: I'm gonna go watch again : )
 Silvrmane: sounds like my mayhem with the girls....
 lustygoat: roommate looked at it and laughed hao.
 lustygoat: won't do the new hard death yet, you gotta change the physics.
 lustygoat: I'm sure... getting monsters to behave like they're following a screenplay... very 
 Silvrmane: mine floated out nice as you please, almost reached the other side... and POOF!
 Silvrmane: almost balletic...
 lustygoat: lol
 Silvrmane: Yeah..
 lustygoat: I think it didn't work for placipus because he was on TC... I gotta double check the 
 alien flags.
Of course, the alien flags don't do crap anyways. I'm looking forward to getting my hands on a scriptable game engine, so I can just say "Fly out that damn airlock!" instead of having to go through all that.

My best advice about map making, in Forge and in future map making tools, is to have a plan before you start laying stuff down... and then when the time comes, fuck the plan and go with what's working. In Forge, for example, I sometimes lay out big open polys and see if the scale is right for the room I want to build. Then I delete the poly while leaving the lines, and build the room within it. Another trick I used was to print out a screenshot of the half- or quarter-finished map and sketch directly on the printout.

With more modern map making tools, a plan is even more necessary. But even with the most detailed plan, you'll find things that work better in the medium itself, so never be afraid to break away from it. Also, know your textures and challenge the way they are used. One of the best parts of Killed is the use of the light cone texture in a way James never intended it, on the floor and only 1/4 WU wide, but it looks awesome.

Michael K. Neylon /
Last Modified: Thursday, July 31, 1997