General questions regarding the LOTC projects

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General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby CowardI » Fri May 24, 2013 5:26 pm

Hi,

I remember a friend who recommended the LOTC mod for me back in the day when the internet was slow and stuffed with forum trolls. I was only 14 then and must say that the gameplay just blew my mind with awesomeness. I returned to play this mod for just about 1 month ago, and now that i am older and more matured, I'm really impressed with the story and how huge of a project this is. I can only imagine the hard work put into all of this. Using editing tools and trigger systems back in 1998, my head is spinning just thinking about it.

And now... I'm done with episode 21, The Oracle is loose, I go back to this site and reed there is supposed to be another cinematic somewhere (no, not the one you're supposed to play after mission 18. Source: http://www.campaigncreations.org/starcr ... rkness/faq) that should give some kind of conclusion, but I assume it was canceled.

Then i read that there is planned a SC2 mod. I immediately gather my old friends to tell them about this and ask them if they still remembered it. They did alright, they cant't wait for it to come out. I have done some research and have a few questions. Generally to the staff involved in this project, but if anyone else knows these answers, feel free to reply. :-)

1. Whats the status on the Starcraft 2 mod? I have read on this site that the voice acting is done and levels are in the works, but how far is it from completion? There are teasers on youtube which are almost 3 years old now.

2. Have Elye, the Oracle, or anyone involved with the LOTC project ever tried to reach out to Blizzard about your plans and try to get some support? Either financially or with just some more manpower? Has any of the staff from Blizzard played the SC1 LOTC mods and either commended or commented about your work?

3. When this mod was first released back in the day, how many downloads did the SC1 LOTC mods have in total? And what was the general reception?

4. How many hours of work do you estimate you guys used with the SC1 LOTC mods?

5. Will some of the old cast (Wainwright, Drake and Furlong) return in SC2 mod? If not, are you still in touch with them for good old times sake?

6. I think LOTC episode 19-21 .exe file is corrupted. It won't work, all the other .exe functions fine. Furthermore some multimedia stuff has been removed like the trailer, apocalyptic garden etc. Any chance of posting these back up?

7. What plans do you have for advertising that this mod actually exists? Would have been cool as hell if one of the Starcrat pvp game casters like "Husky" could do a play-trough.
Last edited by CowardI on Sun May 26, 2013 8:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby IskatuMesk » Fri May 24, 2013 5:39 pm

1 - Haven't heard anything for a long time. Oracle's been busy with IRL. I just assume it's dead or at the most dormant. Sc2's limits were holding him back a lot.

2 - Blizzard doesn't support custom content. They would never, ever financially or manpower anything outside of their company. You'd be lucky to even get a response from them about a specific project. Knowing people in Blizzard, I can't even get that... besides, Oracle apparently has an infinite wallet he can just throw at people himself. That's how he was making the sc2 project.

6 - Make sure you're on the proper version of starcraft. I haven't run it myself but if it's a Stargraft mod it will require 1.07 iirc.
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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby CowardI » Fri May 24, 2013 6:09 pm

IskatuMesk wrote:1 - Haven't heard anything for a long time. Oracle's been busy with IRL. I just assume it's dead or at the most dormant. Sc2's limits were holding him back a lot.

2 - Blizzard doesn't support custom content. They would never, ever financially or manpower anything outside of their company. You'd be lucky to even get a response from them about a specific project. Knowing people in Blizzard, I can't even get that... besides, Oracle apparently has an infinite wallet he can just throw at people himself. That's how he was making the sc2 project.

6 - Make sure you're on the proper version of starcraft. I haven't run it myself but if it's a Stargraft mod it will require 1.07 iirc.


1. What kind of limitations?
Sorry for my ignorance, but what is IRL? :-P

2. That's very arrogant of them in my opinion. It's thanks to many private projects, maps and mods that these games have been held in such high regard. Like DOTA, Diplomacy etc.
I think the cheesy campaign in Heath of the Swarm was the final nail in the coffin and proving that Blizzard has lost all sense of story telling and creating a good atmosphere. After Warcraft 3 FT everything just started to fall apart (in my opinion which is also shared with many game reviewers).

Has Blizzard every stated a reason for this kind of policy by the way?

3. That was the exact same thing I thought too, but I have reinstalled the game so many times, and patched them accordingly, that I think I have tried every single version there is of SC1. It's worth looking into. ;-)
But it's not really that big of a deal because I just use the Fallen Angel .exe which has almost the same portraits.
Last edited by CowardI on Sat May 25, 2013 8:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby IskatuMesk » Fri May 24, 2013 7:14 pm

Only now do we have a (still "private"?) set of 3d tools. When Oracle was working on the project, he couldn't do custom portraits and I believe there were other things he was wanting to do that were simply not possible. I am not sure if this is a reason why the project went dark, but he had a wedding and a lot of other related things on his plate at the time and it's not unreasonable to believe that just took over for him. IRL = In Real Life.

2 - Blizzard has always been disconnected from the custom content community. I mean it's great and all they "make" editors (which turn out to be last minute hacks), but you can only depend on them to do nothing. In general the direction the industry is heading towards is to make money off of custom content when possible, stifle it otherwise.

I'm not a bigwig game reviewer, but I've got many bones to pick with that company's ethics. Your opinion is not a minority.

3. I am not sure then.
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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby mark_009_vn » Fri May 24, 2013 9:25 pm

CowardI wrote:Sorry for my ignorance, but what is IRL? :-P


Incest Rape Leisure.

Has Blizzard every stated a reason for this kind of policy by the way?


A company makes profit, nothing more. Why would a company tries to help a mod with little relations to it? Besides, I don't think any of the top brass even know about LOTC.
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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby CowardI » Sat May 25, 2013 9:02 pm

"Incest Rape Leisure."
Wow, shame on you Oracle. :-P

Fair point that Blizzard just wants to make money, but I was just curios. I was not aware of Blizzard not supporting custom content until i read these posts. Furthermore I am also a bit shocked that the map editors was something which was just thrown in at the last minute. I remember the Stacraft Editor which i thought was okay, but Warcraft 3's editor.. just didn't work for me.

I'm starting to get a little off topic here, and hope a moderator won't interprete this as rude. Do many members of campaign creations, or the creators of the mods have a lump in their throats regarding Blizzard? If so, can you be more specific? Like have Blizzard ever deliberately tried to sabotage or shut down some mods? Again, just curious.
Last edited by CowardI on Tue May 28, 2013 7:25 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby IskatuMesk » Sun May 26, 2013 12:22 am

Blizzard has in fact deliberately shut down mods in the past (re: wc3tc) but it's more like the fact that they have completely no regard for us. Starcraft 2 and wc3 were released without basic features that sc1 supported, and sc2's custom content system is like some kind of bad joke with no punch line. It has taken this long to even get a functional 3d exporter, which afaik still isn't even a public thing - something they obviously required just to make the game at all.

I can't speak for others, but my personal experiences with Blizzard staff have all been negative. I had Brett Wood (lead sc2 editor guy now iirc or at least he was) tell me back in wc3 TFT release that they were "aware of these [issues I pointed out] and have no intention of fixing them". In more recent times I had dealings with someone who claimed to be involved in sc2 editor development and nothing came from it but false promises. Toss in a heck of a lot of incompetence, like 1.5 deleting projects (including mine), their editor being a slow mess, etc. and you get a bit of a bitter taste in your mouth. In short, they may as well care about custom content about as much as they care about writing.

Projects like LoTC tend to be a labor of love... and your question of manhours spent on such a project can easily be tens of thousands or more.

Let's take for example a more modern project. In my current project, I have spent the last 5-6 months just updating old stuff and perfecting particle effects. I haven't even hit the big stuff yet. And that isn't even a campaign. Arguably it has a lot more custom content in it, but I don't have to worry about balancing or anything, since it's just a movie. It could easily take another 2-3 years of hard labor.
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Postby Chriso » Tue May 28, 2013 2:38 am

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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby CowardI » Tue May 28, 2013 7:23 pm

Thanks for your replies guys. It was very informative. :-)
I will pop in from time to time to look for news or more replies to this thread.

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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby Lavarinth » Thu May 30, 2013 10:45 am

I'm unaware of the problem you're having with the EXE for chapters 19-21. Fallen Angel may fix the portraits for it, but this is not an answer for other custom content, if any. (I don't remember, exactly.)

Are you positive you have made your computer compatible to the limitations faced with the EXE? What is your operating system, what version of SC would you downgrade to?
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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby CowardI » Fri Aug 16, 2013 9:13 am

Lavarinth wrote:I'm unaware of the problem you're having with the EXE for chapters 19-21. Fallen Angel may fix the portraits for it, but this is not an answer for other custom content, if any. (I don't remember, exactly.)

Are you positive you have made your computer compatible to the limitations faced with the EXE? What is your operating system, what version of SC would you downgrade to?


Sorry for taking this long to reply. Was visiting the site while it was still down and just assumed it would take awhile to get it back up again. :-)

Nevermind. I got ep. 19-21 to work. Don't know how, but it works fine now.

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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby The Oracle » Tue Oct 27, 2015 11:21 pm

Stopped by to take a look around; let's answer some of those questions now, granted several years later:

1) The voicework was originally complete yes. In full. However in looking through the script, there's a few things I might redo and a couple actors who would be sacked and replaced.

2) Blizzard is not the blizzard we used to know. It's Activision now. It's big corporate, which means it's wrapped in a blanket of legal crap. Lawyers, not the creative teams, dictate whether or not blizzard would collaborate in any way, which means likely they won't, because lawyers' priorities are to protect Blizzard, whereas the creative team's priority is to put out great content. Unfortunately, these are sometimes mutually exclusive. When they come into conflict, legal always wins.

3) I never saw download stats for the main maps but Fallen Angel had over 25,000 downloads inclusive of the campaign and accompanying video.

4) SC1 was sooooo much simpler to make than SC2. A map, even with fairly complex triggers, might take a few days at most. SC2's editor, as unfriendly as it is to the end user, can take weeks for a map depending on its composition. That said, SC1's two full episodes and Fallen Angel development and audio required well in excess of a thousand man-hours. The graphics piece I would have to defer to Joel Steudler (remember him?)

5) Furlong was replaced by Matheson in SC2. The actors are different otherwise but the characters would return yes.

6) Been a long time since I thought about those teasers. Let me see if I can dig them up from my ancient archives.

7) If LotC was made for SC2, it would be advertised on every SC2 related site known to the SC fan base.

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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby CowardI » Thu Oct 29, 2015 11:24 am

Hey oracle, :)

Glad you are back. :) I was concerned that we might have had a case of "declared dead in absentia".

As you can see from our posts above, not many people are so happy with the present Blizzard either. The golden age of Blizzard, at least for "us", is gone. The creative atmosphere, storyline and gameplay from Diablo 1 & 2, Warcraft 2 & 3 and Stacraft BW that shit is over. It's really sad too. Because the mentioned games had so much good custom content. Made by the fans, for the fans so it could expand and evolve future Blizzard games. Blizzard could have made it easy for us. Instead, almost as if some CEO in Blizzard became jealous or something, they tried to make it as hard as possible to make custom content.

25 000 downloads for Fallen Angel? That's good. If we take into account the time it was released (much slower and not so much widespread internet use).
That made me think: Have you ever heard of the hack expansions made for Stacraft in 1998? You know Starcraft: Insurrection, Starcraft: Retribution and Starcraft: Stellar Forces? They are total crap and added no new units. These expansions where actually released and sold in stores. My point is: Did you ever try to release LOTC as a Starcraft expansion? Did you ever appeal to Blizzard? Did someone inside Blizzard comment on your work at the time LOTC was released?

Glad to hear the characters are returning. Sad to hear the old voice actors are gone, but I do hope you keep in touch with them. :) I really liked the voice of the UPL Defense Net Director. He was so dark, cool and subtle. Will also miss the voice actor of Karla Wainwright. Another voice witch stood out to me when i played last time was Janine Halsey from the 2nd mission in Past Purposes. It might just be that we live in a really hyper sexual culture nowadays, but did you realize at the time the hint it gives when one of her move quotes are: "I'm coming, I'm coming." ? :P

Thanks for considering looking up those teasers. :)

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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby The Oracle » Sat Oct 31, 2015 11:27 am

I found two of them. Apocalyptic Garden is still MIA.


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Re: General questions regarding the LOTC projects

Postby Jayborino » Sat Oct 31, 2015 1:51 pm

CowardI wrote:That made me think: Have you ever heard of the hack expansions made for Stacraft in 1998? You know Starcraft: Insurrection, Starcraft: Retribution and Starcraft: Stellar Forces? They are total crap and added no new units. These expansions where actually released and sold in stores. My point is: Did you ever try to release LOTC as a Starcraft expansion? Did you ever appeal to Blizzard? Did someone inside Blizzard comment on your work at the time LOTC was released?


Insurrection and Retribution are technically "official" as deemed by Blizzard! Stellar Forces on the other hand is a complete mess and Blizzard actually sued for them to take it off shelves.


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