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Doom hacking notes


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#1 Saturn OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Mar 28, 2018 1:12 PM

Posting my notes here for posterity and as a backup. Also, if anyone else is interested in pursuing this extremely addictive activity, the majority of work will be done. The 'try and learn as you go' bs is taken out of the equation with this info. And mind you, that approach has cost vast amounts of time throughout the process. I'm a Jedi at this now and have broken the process down into a series of steps that help with efficiency to get those levels done in the shortest time with the closest matching textures and least amount of lag so they play fluidly, given the Jaguar's weaknesses of writing many objects in a single area-which is commonplace for most of the maps found in the wild. While this type of extra decorative detail might be pretty on the pc, it's just not feasible within the limitations of the console. Ideas listed by importance are included to aid in whittling down the un-necessities to increase usability.

First, using neo_rg's Doom Level Hacking Tutorial to get rolling is a must. I stumbled across this in December of 2016 and have been avidly using it to create & convert some of the greatest 12 map roms the world has ever seen. (and the only ones in existence :P )

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Added note if gzdoom has invinsible monsters and weapons when testing:
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Probably the most used text doc in this process. I've easily hacked upwards of 2000 times using the quick reference info at the end. Tweaking and changing and tweaking again... this is the fastest info to get it done until the Jag version is absolutely PERFECT.
(paste the following into the previously created text doc):

Hacking a custom map into the Jag ROM.txt

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This is the workflow with some extra info here at the beginning and a partial to do list. This keeps things in check so no wasting time doing the small hack just to find it crash right away because you left a 'Dead player' on the map and the Jag doesn't know what that is...
Excellent and valuable resource here if I do say so myself 8)

Doom To do.txt

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This has been one of the biggest feats in converting maps. A lot of them are made for Doom 2 and that engine has an incredible amount more textures but with what the Jag's assets have available, this 'chart' is invaluable. There are probably a few textures left that aren't on this list but the majority are and work flawlessly. In the early days I'd try to remember what was what and open a 2nd Doom Builder window to refer back but that was way too time consuming so I started compiling everything I could. Searching, copying and pasting is a hell of a LOT faster :D

Replace.txt

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In the early days making a 2 directional teleport was difficult for me. So much to remember when I was too new to retain a lot of it so I made this quick ref. It helped a lot and I hope it can be of use.

teleport quick ref.txt

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Here's a list of 'items' that work with the Jag. There are so many in Doom Builder by default and it can get confusing but neo_rg sent this to me and it's been of great use. I added a bit here and there but the end result is that this saves those crashing levels in PT by bypassing the problem from the start. (similar info can be found in the Doom To do.txt post)

Things list.txt

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Another great collection of info for making maps, alterations to existing maps and an outline of the videos linked in the first part of this document. The majority of this info was originally in the Doom Builder 2 tips thread I made for creating maps on the pc. This doc has a lot of Jaguar specific info that was omitted from that thread but is invaluable in diagnosing and avoiding known problems while editing 8)
To skip the redundancy, I've 'spoiler'ed the info from the original thread.

Doom Builder 2 tips.txt
Quick Reference Notes:

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For hacking the level names:

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Other useful notes:

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This is my baby. The steps for doing neo_rg's 'big hack'
I put this together to save time and it's been the difference maker in keeping my sanity. Not gonna lie, from start to finish this can take 1.5 to 2 hours to complete. There's a high margin for making a single error that can cripple the entire rom. Although going back and finding the mistake is relatively easy, it can be intimidating in the early minutes lol. To get over the mental defeat of such a daunting task, I've repeatedly (and unnecessarily) done 'the big hack' many times over in my spare time until it's become nothing more than a part of my day.
The results at the end are so satisfying that words can't express it. Then, flashing it to a Skunkboard for a test on real hardware or playing on PT. Pure Jag Doom bliss!

Compression info.txt

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Extra Compiling info:

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Also created a MAPCOMP.BAT file that will convert up to 18 maps to compressed .LZZ files & can be run locally instead of having to have/use a USB flash drive. This one only works if placed inside a folder named 0 (zero) that is placed in the C drive. Makes life a LOT easier 8)
Here are the contents to paste. Save as MAPCOMP18.BAT and copy to C:/0 along with DOOMLZ77.EXE per the setup instructions.
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Attached File  CMAP CALCULATOR 18.zip   13.67KB   37 downloads

 

Using the above I made 2 original maps and converted 84 found in the wild. Also converted all 17 maps from 32X Doom and hacked them to play on the Jaguar :cool:



#2 ColecoGamer OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 2, 2018 9:41 AM

Thank you for sharing your progress!

#3 Saturn OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 2, 2018 10:04 AM

You're welcome :)
It can look overwhelming but when anyone gets started using the OG guide from neo_rg, this stuff will fall right into place. It's amazing what can be accomplished... :cool:

#4 JagChris OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 2, 2018 12:07 PM

Saturn are you still in touch with T Bird? He was always fond of you. Maybe he'd let you use his Doom engine.

#5 Saturn OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 11, 2018 6:42 PM

Nope, no contact in years. Seems (everyone) has vanished :ponder:



#6 doctorclu OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 27, 2018 10:47 AM

Just chiming in to say I've greatly enjoyed the Doom hacks of yours I've tried out.  Thanks to this it is another "Man it would be great if..." things of the Jaguar that we can strike off the list.   I now officially have too much Doom to play on the Jaguar.  :P



#7 Saturn OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 27, 2018 1:26 PM

Too much DOOM is a great thing :P

I'm slowly easing back into converting levels. Should have more soon enough :cool:



#8 omf OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 27, 2018 3:15 PM

need to get that useless network code fixed, i tried carls *fixed* version at ejagfest with gaztee, two words, 

 

epic fail!


Edited by omf, Fri Apr 27, 2018 3:16 PM.


#9 Zerosquare OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 27, 2018 5:35 PM

Maybe we should implement network-over-carrier-pigeon? It's probably less fussy than the JagLink.

#10 Saturn OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 27, 2018 8:23 PM

Hoping some of you knowledgeable fellows can collaborate and get it figured out. All I can do is help with testing but I have 2 Jags sitting side by side with Jaglink dongles waiting to go. Would be awesome to finally have this working :cool:



#11 JagChris OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Apr 28, 2018 1:18 AM

Hoping some of you knowledgeable fellows can collaborate and get it figured out. All I can do is help with testing but I have 2 Jags sitting side by side with Jaglink dongles waiting to go. Would be awesome to finally have this working :cool:


Tursi could fix it but we'd have to pay him.

Networking use to be his thing.

#12 Songbird ONLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 29, 2018 5:17 PM

Yeah, sorry my last modified version of the Doom code didn't end up bug-free... I did test on two Jags, but with just me moving around both joypads and only on one or two levels, so it was a limited test but it was bug-free for over an hour.

 

However, the important thing I learned is that I never had a failure due to packet checksum, which you would expect if the serial port hardware was messed up. Instead, it always failed for a consistency error which means the two consoles don't agree on where the players are. This may be consistent with WelshWorrier's speculation about the z-coordinate not staying in sync, which I never implemented.



#13 Saturn OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 29, 2018 5:28 PM

The first two levels played flawlessly for me. I then took both players to map 7 where (it's more complicated with the distance to the exit and all the rooms between and) it crashes before one player can make it to the exit. This, with leaving the other player in the entrance. I tried it with and without cheats enabled to see if that had anything to do with it. Obviously not.

Hoping there's a way to fix the z coordinate sync! :cool:



#14 walter_J64bit OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 29, 2018 8:22 PM

I know this doesn't help, I recall T-Bird saying he'd fixed Doom's network bug but he didn't share it with anyone :roll: we just need to keep working on it and we'll have a network bug free Doom one day! :thumbsup:  :thumbsup:    


Edited by walter_J64bit, Sun Apr 29, 2018 8:25 PM.


#15 Stephen OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 2, 2018 2:23 PM

I know this doesn't help, I recall T-Bird saying he'd fixed Doom's network bug but he didn't share it with anyone :roll: we just need to keep working on it and we'll have a network bug free Doom one day! :thumbsup:  :thumbsup:    

T-Bird also told me he didn't steal Battlesphere's photon torpedo sounds from Star Raiders, but rather it was from a game he programmed in the 80s.



#16 PeterG ONLINE  

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Posted Wed May 2, 2018 5:13 PM

I know this doesn't help, I recall T-Bird saying he'd fixed Doom's network bug but he didn't share it with anyone :roll: we just need to keep working on it and we'll have a network bug free Doom one day! :thumbsup:  :thumbsup:    

 

Well he had a stable networking code for BS (and Aircars if I remember correctly) so if he could apply that (or his knowledge of the workings) to doom no wonder it is fixed. But that unfortunatley is for no use to anyone as we do not have that code. On the other hand these days I have a hard time imagining who to play Doom networked with aside from occasions at Jagfests.



#17 JagChris OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 3, 2018 11:45 AM

It was impressive what they did. They had stable networking while also seeming to have the DSP do sound and help the GPU.

#18 Saturn OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 3, 2018 4:41 PM

Let's bribe... I mean pay somebody. I got a hundred to start it off with :P



#19 walter_J64bit OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 26, 2018 5:39 AM

Check this out "DOOM 64" 32X hack!  :-o

 

https://www.youtube....h?v=9a2bOXHzIAw


Edited by walter_J64bit, Sat May 26, 2018 5:41 AM.


#20 JagChris OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 26, 2018 9:03 AM

given the Jaguar's weaknesses of writing many objects in a single area-which is commonplace for most of the maps found in the wild.


This would probably be better described as a weakness of the current engine.

#21 Saturn OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 26, 2018 3:49 PM

Check this out "DOOM 64" 32X hack!  :-o

 

https://www.youtube....h?v=9a2bOXHzIAw

That's unbelievable! I grabbed the EU & JP roms to see if I can jack the map data and get this running on the Jaguar :lust:



#22 Saturn OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Oct 8, 2018 7:25 PM

I've been messing around with the Doom source code the last few days and made videos of the hacks I've implemented so far.

Still a bit hard to control using a Jaguar controller via USB since PT runs so fast but here's 3 hacks I've done in the last three days. The first is at 6 seconds when I open the map screen. I enabled Automap and show all Things (two cheats that have never been discovered afaik).

 

The 2nd hack is at 17 seconds where I enable the Very Happy Ammo Cheat = Pause, # + Pause (all keys, weapons, ammo, armor, and health)

I never liked getting the keys so in my version, I removed them but cranked up the armor bonus to 999% & ammo to 999 each. That was more of a joke though..

 

The 3rd hack is the insane power of the shotgun. You can see firstly at 33 seconds after I warp to level 8 and open the door. The blast tears through the back of some poor zombie schmuck and hits the explosive barrel. A few seconds later at :52 the Hell Knights eat it with one shot each. Awesome :cool:






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