August 2004 in the Life of Ben (Blog)

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Home Developments (23rd August 2004)

My mother now lets me on the computer quite regularly whilst my dad is at work. This has allowed me to do a lot more to my GTA series projects, catch up with where the modding community is at and upload some updates and a load of other stuff! She has registered at GTAForums and you can find her welcome thread on there.

Projects Progress (23rd August 2004)

I have been working on various city projects for GTA now. As I have done so much since the last article, I will just give a summary of where each thing I am working on is currently at:-

I volunteered to comment all the GTA 1 missions from Vice City so that this project could authentically recreate the original missions from GTA 1. This has been going faster than I expected but it is hard going all the same. The topic linked to is where Delfi first made the proposition but I hope and expect for the project to be given its own area at the forums. When that happens I will be sure to announce it here with a link to it.
MultiSlayer v4
Currently working through some technical barriers to do with adding zones for traffic lights, restart locations, bus stops and such things which is what that topic contains. When I actually release version 4 I will make an announcement here and it will be available from the MultiSlayer page of this site. I have gotten into doing mission script work for it, so expect all those cars and powerups not quite positioned right to be fixed. I am also re-lighting it from scratch so that version 4 will be able to be played in Dusk mode with low gamma level for really atmospheric gaming!
Myriad Handling
With restricted computer time the fears I voiced at the start of not being able to spend much time on this have come true. The page linked to is the one I made on this site. I will package a release version which has the current handling.cfg I am using which is highly incomplete but well commented. It is still more complete than many of the cars are!
New GTA Vice City Vehicles Handling
I still have not had the list from Sin5k4 of which of his cars I have done handling for and where they are hosted. Without that list I can not shift the load of cars by him that are sitting in my Workshop. I have not had a response from any of the other authors who I have contacted either. Once I get the list from sin5k4 I will put all other projects on hold until that Workshop is not so overcrowded!
The team I had for this project seems to have evaporated. Dup still has not done the motorway signs for the past couple of months despite continually promising he will. Jcab42 seems to have been abducted by aliens and he is the only one with the most recent model files. Viperman has started making a secret series of underground tunnels beneath Scotland and Scandinavia in order to escape his responsibility for making the new intersections…

Vice Workshop Overflowing (7th August 2004)

There are just so many cars that I have done setups for, or am working on setups for, or which have not quite been fully released yet that this area has become enormous. Sin5k4 is creating the list of all the cars which have my handling with them, so that will shift a lot but there are some authors who seem to have gone on holiday or something!

GTA 2 Revival (7th August 2004)

In the brief time I have on the home PC, I have been discovered by some excellent players of GTA 2 and we have played a couple of games. Because I know have proof that GTA 2 is still being played actively, I intend to make a fourth release of MultiSlayer to fix every last little bug in the map, get it to support 2-6 players online with proper coloured arrows and generally make it a more finished product.

I have asked Illspirit to write the extra code bits for supporting more players. We will have to decide additional start points to do this. There are plenty of weapons as it is now, so it should not be too much of a task adding the extra player support. Does require me having home PC access when I am actually still banned, though.

GTA 1 to GTA Vice City (7th August 2004)

Delfi and I chatted about converting a GTA 1 level to the GTA Vice City engine whilst we working on MultiSlayer, which converted GTA 1 textures and the GTA 1 map I made into GTA 2 format which I then manually tweaked in the map editor to sort out little problems.

Delfi has kindly allowed me to have quite a lot of input into this. After a long discussion he agreed that converting the Vice City level from GTA 1 to the GTA Vice City engine would be the best way as the bikini-clad pedstrians, sunny weather, traffic lights and other generic stuff would already be present so saving us a lot of work.

He is also allowed me to choose the name and so far my favourite idea is VC2 as it is easy to type, indicates that GTA Vice City is the engine being used and shows that it will be replaced. It is also very fast to type, so that means people will be more willing to talk about it, I reckon. A different name might be used, this is not set in stone. As of writing this article, the current thread where it is being discussed is this poll topic at GTAForums. We are hoping to be given our own section of the forums, much like the GTA 3 to GTA Vice City conversion has been but the link to that will come in a news article once that has happened.

New Handling Project (2nd August 2004)

Since I have gotten a bit more home PC use recently, I have decided to take on a new handling project. I shall be creating an optional handling.cfg for the Myriad Islands project, setting up every car in my own style. It will be a bit like the Handling Overhaul projects I have done for GTA 3 and GTA Vice City, though this one is a modification for a modification rather than for the game itself.

Major Site Updates (2nd August 2004)

All section portals are now in a similar style. They display the last time each sub-section was updated, the link to that sub-section and a short description of what each contains. The section for Links is now a multi-page area, with the links categorised by the types of thing they releate to. The GTA page of these is just about complete but the other two are not.