Current Development Status Quo

lvb2555

New Adventurer
Jan 21, 2008
48
2
35
Hello everyone,

I've been a very long time player of MS:C - so long in fact that this username is *at least* 20 years old (though looks like I have been a forum member for but 12 years) and I may yet make a new account to be rid of it.

I'm currently looking for some fundamental information regarding the current state of affairs for MS. I have recently begun learning and discovering I enjoy the process of programming. I have finished an Associate's in Computer Systems Engineering and some of my coursework was for C++ programming. I have been since honing my skills with exercises such as Project Euler and investing in more specific study such as Stroustroup's Principles and Practice using C++. I am at the point where I am considering adding to my current field and getting another Associate's in Computer Science.

While I am a very much a whelp, I have implemented simple C++ solutions for my place of work, such as streamlining file backup for inexperienced end users and writing an automated program to verify and keep track of computer inventory that uses SQL to query WMIC to pull information embedded in firmware should it exist (though I relied HEAVILY on Microsoft Doc's to interact with WinAPI due to Windows being a patched framework with a heavy C scaffolding.)

I have done some cursory research and found a thread where the MSS code had been made available for open source. Do you guys have a DEV faq or information repository? Specifically concerned with such things as:

I am using VS Community 2019, what version of VS should I be using for best compatibility?
After perusing the file structure, I was unable to find an anchor point to view the project root (nor was I able to import the project en masse as if it was a Git project), is there a .sln that encompasses the entire project for browsing? (As an example, I recently looked that the open source for Windows 10 calculator - while the project was divided into multiple scopes for specific reasons or features, I was still able to browse the entire thing from a given root. The repo I downloaded from the forum does not seem to have this common root).

What API dependencies are suggested? Should I become familiar with both GoldSource and Source 2, alongside different graphics APIs such as Direct3d or DirectDraw?

Boiled down - what prerequisite knowledge should I begin looking at to be of use to this project? I have an unshakable belief that this genre is the most untapped and ( especially** with the advent of VR) has the potential to be one of gaming's greatest ideas and would love to be even but a small part of it, even should that part be but big fixing, structuring or testing.

It has long been a large regret that this project was criminally underexposed, and I would like to add whatever assistance I can towards making it more readily available for people to experience and enjoy.
 

Dridje

Renowned Adventurer
MSC Developer
Socialist Guild
Alpha Tester
Feb 2, 2007
2,230
49
I think most of us have given up on MasterSword Source/Xash/Unity/GameMaker at this point (seriously, if you search you'll find a lot of threads about starting the next MasterSword game). If you do want to try and get the ole feet wet you could take a look inside the mod directory for some information on making and testing scripts (and you can even look at some examples). I'd recommend if you do love MSC like us then just stick to the current GoldSource engine. The best people to talk to would be Thothie or ManInBlack regarding your specific questions.

Are you interested in trying to learn mapping or modelling or just want to specialize with coding/scripting? Fortunately this mod is community built so it's easy enough to get your creations into the game, however, the community can be toxic and negative at times so be prepared.
 

lvb2555

New Adventurer
Jan 21, 2008
48
2
35
Regarding your insight here, I could quote Dylan Thomas, "Do not go gentle into that good night." but this may be me clinging to naivete.

I have some limited experience with mapping as I dabbled with mapping in Team Fortress Classic, and no experience with modeling. I try to approach something like this more from a position of "How can I use my strengths in the best way?"

Given a lot of my recent trial by fire, I'm not intimidated by not having experience in a given skill set, as I have constantly been required to face and surpass my limitations on a near daily basis with regards to my work and expected responsibilities and I think that adaptability is fairly important.

I know right now, where I am, I've got almost none of the contextual knowledge or skills to hit the ground running for any facet of this project, but if there's a thing I can learn that can be done to free up labor for something/someone else, sure.

As an aside I do know I am a terrible artist. Even if trained, artistic concepts come very slowly. As a case in point I got a "C" in Art I in High School despite trying and being present, but they were still learned - if at a less than average pace. I feel I have an eye for good design however, as strange as that sounds. (Brings up memories of the quote "Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach.")

I'm not really concerned about "the next MS" game as that is over my head at the moment, but more wishing to collaborate on something I've held a long admiration for. Hypothetically I would say if I were to approach it, I would forget about permanent assets now and just focus on engine, even it it means 'remaking the same MS game' with a framework that can easily take in developing technologies while reusing old assets or exporting assets to this new framework.

Again contextual knowledge here is pretty crucial, because I'm operating from a position of limited perspective, so I don't even know if such a thing is feasible.

If an aspect of the project say requires modeling a sword, then I can certainly try, but it may not be an efficient use of my current skills. Though, it is also true that it is skill I am capable of acquiring (if with difficulty).

Sorry for the ramble: TLDR - I can learn modeling or mapping, but it would be a slow process.
 

TheOysterHippopotami

Active Adventurer
MSS Developer
MSC Developer
RiP
DarkTide
Sep 6, 2009
1,213
41
31
I agree, stick to the goldsource engine. MSC is always on the cusp of doing something awesome but never quite gets there because a lack of manpower. We really could use a coder more than anything else aside from maybe an animator. In my view the progression of the game really should be reorganized from the ground up.
 

lvb2555

New Adventurer
Jan 21, 2008
48
2
35
Exactly the info I was looking for, thanks everyone. If there was a mouse trying to eat a mountain, that would be about how I feel right now.
 

Thothie

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Lead MSC Developer
MSC Developer
Apr 8, 2005
16,201
256
lost
...I posted a whole thing regarding entry development for MSC, before I realized what subforum I was in... Unless ya'll made the same mistake, you guys are rude. :p Surely MSU's showed more progress than, well, a lot of the other attempts. Eventually, however, a new engine is going to be the only way this game survives. Even Svencoop only buys us so much time, as Valve isn't updating that to deal with changes to Windows (or, in our case, to Steam).

So I'll wait until you get a rejection letter from MSU before suggesting on where to start for MSC. ;)
 

lvb2555

New Adventurer
Jan 21, 2008
48
2
35
...I posted a whole thing regarding entry development for MSC, before I realized what subforum I was in... Unless ya'll made the same mistake, you guys are rude. :p Surely MSU's showed more progress than, well, a lot of the other attempts. Eventually, however, a new engine is going to be the only way this game survives. Even Svencoop only buys us so much time, as Valve isn't updating that to deal with changes to Windows (or, in our case, to Steam).

So I'll wait until you get a rejection letter from MSU before suggesting on where to start for MSC. ;)
I dug around a little bit regarding in the test scripting, but I seem to have hit a small snafu. Is this scripting system a custom scripting engine you devs created to run all this on top of the gldsrc framework? The functions I read though seemed custom, and I'm not used to whitespace awareness in syntax which would take some getting used to.

I can't find any documentation on the scripting language, but I was able to narrow down VS Studio 2010 as the choice of IDE, but everything I pull from Valve doc's points me to Source SDK - GoldSource seems to have faded into the annals of history.

I would certainly like more information for both projects, but if this conversation is better moved to other forum discussion, just let me know.
 
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WHITE-LION

Adventurer
MSS Developer
MSU Developer
Apr 7, 2019
37
7
24
...I posted a whole thing regarding entry development for MSC, before I realized what subforum I was in... Unless ya'll made the same mistake, you guys are rude. :p Surely MSU's showed more progress than, well, a lot of the other attempts. Eventually, however, a new engine is going to be the only way this game survives. Even Svencoop only buys us so much time, as Valve isn't updating that to deal with changes to Windows (or, in our case, to Steam).

So I'll wait until you get a rejection letter from MSU before suggesting on where to start for MSC. ;)
Xash3D

 
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Thothie

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator
Lead MSC Developer
MSC Developer
Apr 8, 2005
16,201
256
lost
I would certainly like more information for both projects, but if this conversation is better moved to other forum discussion, just let me know.
Likely. I expected a response from the MSU team by now. I'll make one last post in regards to that here, I guess. But further MSC development questions, at least, are likely better asked in the scripting, mapping, or modeling subforums or via PM (we don't have a public coding subforum, just one in the developer's section, as ya can't easily contribute bits and pieces there).

To that end, I'll just repost the post I deleted:
If there was a mouse trying to eat a mountain, that would be about how I feel right now.
Trick is to figure where on Cheese Everest to begin nibbling...

Seems you have at least rudimentary mapping skills, which is kind of a must, as to script or code, ya gotta at least have some idea of how the entities work together, though you don't need to know all the ins and out of brush work and optimization. It is indeed the quickest task to learn, and lets you exercise more personal creativity, where as coding and scripting is more puzzle solving, and modeling is (ideally) art by request.

Teaching scripting is a long and arduous process, even if it has a bit of a "minute to learn, lifetime to master" effect for some. Take a gander at the documentation in msc/test_scripts and fiddle with the test_scripts map to see if that might be the sorta thing yer interested in. Ask for tips/help yonder, and when you've got a rudimentary skill set, we can start throwing out actual tasks for you to chew on. The alpha version should also let you create custom items.

Coding... If you've not worked with the HL1SDK before, that is indeed a giant mountain to chew on (and even if you have, MSC++ is the deepest darkest depths of that nightmare). Trial of fire for new coders usually at least involves managing to compile the SDK under VS2003 (which we can help with), and then solving a simple sample code task. Spreading the code source has repeatedly proven to be a security risk, so we don't tend to toss it out willy nilly. However, if you want an actual mod to practice with, Wizard Wars is open sourced here. Even if it's a much simpler game, I suppose it at least shares some theme - and there's some primitive monster interaction and such therein.

[Sorry for slow response - was on alien clean up duty all weekend...]

I dug around a little bit regarding in the test scripting, but I seem to have hit a small snafu. Is this scripting system a custom scripting engine you devs created to run all this on top of the gldsrc framework? The functions I read though seemed custom, and I'm not used to whitespace awareness in syntax which would take some getting used to. [...] I can't find any documentation on the scripting language
It's a unique custom script system, all the documentation available is included in the root of the msc/test_scripts folder (starting with !test_scripts_go_here.txt), with the ms.stx serving as reference, and some additional info located yonder.

I was able to narrow down VS Studio 2010 as the choice of IDE, but everything I pull from Valve doc's points me to Source SDK - GoldSource seems to have faded into the annals of history.
Sadly, as stated, we have to rely on VS2003 for that, but we can help you in that department. The current official Half-Life1 SDK (which is, sadly, not fully updated to reflect the current release) can be found here.
 

thesupersoup

Adventurer
Lead MSU Developer
MSS Developer
MSC Developer
MSU Developer
Jan 5, 2009
216
8
28
Hi, I'm the lead for MS:U.

We're not dead, in the sense that MS:U has been abandoned. My day job is game development, and frankly, I'm serving multiple roles on a small indie team. Meaning that I have way more work than I know what to do with.

This has rendered me incapable of blocking out the time to "one-man-army" my way to a MS:U build. The other team members that had signed on all drifted away, but I'm still here, and interested in making something happen with some others who can help handle the lifting.

The real thing that's stopped me from progressing is recognizing that our current project setup isn't ideal for multiple contributors. I'll need to split our the git repo for code, I think, and find a solution for version control on the rest of the project. If you have any solutions there, they're most welcome.

We're about to launch early access for our first title over at my day job. Come this summer, I *should* have some more time to address the side projects that have been waiting in the wings. I'd love for MS:U to be one of them, and extra hands would be most welcome.

Bear in mind that MS:U is being coded in C#, as that's the language for Unity scripts. It should be an easy transition if you've only worked with C++, but worth noting.
 
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