W A V E L E N G T H

<Harry-val> It's 5pm, let's get started

<Gunny> Alright....

<Impaler> argh

<Gunny> Peeps can start asking Questions in #Questions then

<Impaler> Alright. We thank everyone for coming.

<Impaler> Brief intros?

<Impaler> +i will go on 8:05

<Harry-val> We'll introduce ourselves. I'm Harry Teasley, and right now at Valve I'm working with third-parties in mod and expansion pack creation.

<GabeN> I'm Gabe Newell, I'm the managing director here at Valve.

<David-Valve> I'm David Speyrer. I started at Valve on March 1st and I'm working on Worldcraft.

<Yahn-val> I'm Yahn Bernier, I'm responsible for the front end for Half-Life and mods, for the mod browser, and for network coding

<Gunny> Shall we get started Gabe?

<Impaler> Alright. I believe we can start going?

<GabeN> Yep. Let's go.

<Gunny> k

<Gunny> Q: Yes, I was wondering what kind of demo you expect Mods to produce for E3?

<Ken-val> I'm Ken Birdwell. I worked on the AI and weapons for Half-Life, and along with Harry put the SDK together.

<GabeN> For E3, we've been working with Sierra to set aside space in the booth for MODs.

<Impaler> +i, gunny

<Sam-RAS> +i

<GabeN> This grows out of our on-going committment to the MOD community.

<GabeN> The kind of thing we are looking for are MODs that show the capability of the authoring environment.

<Gunny> Okee...

<Harry-val> We want to give the mod community an opportunity to show how far user-modified games have come.

<GabeN> There are a lot of press and industry people who will see the MODs.

<Impaler> What do you think Half-Life offers to MOD developers that other games do not?

<Impaler> q's in bold please

<Harry-val> A lot of flexibility, and incredible development resources, to start with

<Phantom> <[XCOM]Excalibur> *Question: Will the TFC source be released?

<GabeN> Harry, you might provide more concrete examples (client-side DLLs)

<Harry-val> We have spent a lot of effort to put together a comprehensive SDK for folks to make of Half-Life whatever they wish

<ZaMoose> Gunman-ilian> Will members of the Mod team get to be at E3?

<GabeN> The TFC source won't be released.

<Yahn-val> HL also allows mod authors a lot of control over the visual look of their mods in the actual interface. Nobody else has done anything like this.

<GabeN> As far as having MOD developers being at E3, that's something we should talk about on a case by case basis. Contact Harry. Obviously MOD authors are going to do a better job of showing their MOD off than we can.

<Impaler> Why would developers choose Half-Life's engine for modifications rather than other engines?

<Yahn-val> We also provide a centralized location for mods to be found, rather than having to rely on word of mouth or finding out about mods on web pages etc. With the mod browser, they just show up and can be automatically d/l and installed to the right places. We think this addresses a huge shortcoming of the pre-HL mod scene

<Phantom> <XP-Cagey> Q for David: What is planned for the next release of WC?

<Harry-val> Finding, downloading, and correctly installing a mod is pretty daunting for many folks

<Gunny> What steps can people do to get there map known to the community?

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> that will definitely make installing mods a breeze for new-comers

<ZaMoose> What is the status of the Linux server port? Is Zoid still working on it?

<Harry-val> We're taking the work out of that, and making it easier for people new to mods to try them out

<David-Valve> Our last release of Worlcraft provided TFC support, a new mouselook interface, and fixed a few bugs. For our 2.2 release we have several things planned:

<Yahn-val> The linux server port is being tested... as we speak. It's very very close now.

<ZaMoose> Excellent

<Gunny> Indeed :) (Has many linux shells)

<Harry-val> The Linux server is in beta right now

<Gunny> when new versions of half-life are released (updates and such), will programmers have to re-write their code to work with the new source?

<auto|ycus> Getting maps known in the community is a simple matter of self promotion. Getting it on as many review sites as possible is definitely a good start.

<Ken-val> HL supports skeletal animation, client side DLLS, 3D sound, C++ class library for mod generation, etc.

<ZaMoose> Will it require X to run or can it run in console mode only?

<David-Valve> One of the coolest is *true* texture alignment, so textures will be correctly aligned to faces, allowing you to rotate geometry after textureing it.

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> you guys have already admitted to not porting a linux _client_ for half-life, any plans for future games? (i.e. team fortress 2)

<David-Valve> The next release of Worlcraft will support Quake and Quake 2 maps as well.

<Wolfer|BH> !mode -i

<Phantom> David-Valve: Woo hoo! That'll make life easier :)

<Yahn-val> No X windows, the linux hlds just runs from the shell

<Harry-val> One great way for maps to get attention is to send them to Radium at PlanetHalfLife for review. With mods, you send the approrpiate files to Valve for inclusion on the mod server: everyone who opens the mod browser will see that your mod exists for download.

<Gunny> When will the TFC ENTS be realised for World Craft?

<ZaMoose> errm, released, yes/no?

<ZaMoose> ZaMoose-> Gunny

<Gunny> I think so :P

<David-Valve> We're trying to fix all the things that make level editing unnecessarily time-consuming. Fiddling with texture coordinates and geometry that breaks up doesn't make anyone more productive.

<Impaler> Valve, if you see any other dev's in here, let us know.

<GabeN> On the map promotion side, a couple of sites are working out promotions with the magazines. They will have map contests and the winners will get included on the conver-mount discs. I'm not sure which ones have been announced, but I know at least two of these that are going to happen.

<Impaler> With a client side DLL, has it ever been considered to provide more close ties to the rendering engine itself, so mod authors could elaborate on the effects without using bandwidth?

<David-Valve> The TFC entities were released with WC 2.1.

<Sythe> Q: I am wondering what the procedure is for replacing the Interface Graphics for my TC (the ones in the HL main menu) I have tried just replacing them with new ones but the graphics dont work, what am I screwing up?

<auto|ycus> the tfc ents ARE released for wc

<Gunny> Q: Are there any plugins being developed for other 3D graphics programs such as Lightwave 3D by Newtek that will support halflife modeling?

<auto|ycus> they're available here - http://halflife.gamedesign.net/cgi-bin/ftp.pl?dir=Game_Data_Files/

<Impaler> slow down...

<Sam-RAS> Will some more documentation be forthcoming? Yahn, you and I have discussed issues that have appeared with the way certain programs (like qlumpy) work. Is there any plan for an FAQ or other type of document?

<Harry-val> Sythe: they need to be installed in the \gfx\shell subdir of your mod dir

<ZaMoose> Welcome Gearbox fellows!

<Harry-val> If they're named and sized correctly, they will show up automagically

<Randy-GB> Thanks

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> hey mike

<Impaler> Sorry Randy, it's a little 'bit hectic.

<Ken-val> With the client DLL you can add any kind of overlays you want (maps, hud info etc.) but no world models.

<Yahn-val> The interface graphics should be pretty easy to get up and running. There are a few restriction re: color depth and reserving color indices for transparency. It should be pretty apparent if you open the ones in the valve\ .pak file and see what they look like. Which files were you having trouble with?

<Impaler> Q: Are there any plugins being developed for other 3D graphics programs such as Lightwave 3D by Newtek that will support halflife modeling?

<Impaler> Q: Are there any plugins being developed for other 3D graphics programs such as Lightwave 3D by Newtek that will support halflife modeling?

<Impaler> sorry

<Gunny> ;)

<Cail> If anyone has any Action Half-life questions, I'm only going to be around for a half hour or so...

<ZaMoose> <Nighthawk[Mach3]> When TF2 comes out, will an SDK be provided with it as well, eventually?

<Ken-val> We'd really like plugins for other 3D editing programs, which is why we release the full source code to all our tools. If any one is interested, I'm certainly available to any questions.

<Harry-val> We're not developing further 3D model plugins ourselves, but we've spoken with several programmers who are starting work on exporters for other 3D tools

<Yahn-val> We'll continue to listen to the community about which aspects of developing mods are confusing or underdocumented. We'll be gathering that information up, writing new FAQs and tuturials as needed, and getting the word out to folks when common problems present themselves.

<Sam-RAS> If anyone has Level Five or HAlf-Life:Chronicles questions, I'm here forever...

<GabeN> Cail, what experiences have you had working with the SDK? What lessons have you learned that would save people time?

<ZaMoose> Cail: Are there any spectacular additions to AHL that you'd like to trumpet?

<Impaler> QUESTION: Will representatives from each mod shown at E3 be flown to E3, or is it required for them to find a way there?

<Sam-RAS> Weapon types in AHL? Anything new?

<Ken-val> Our export format is intentionally non 3DSMax specific, it's a pretty simple ascii file format. We hope it'll be easy to duplicate, or if not, modify studiimdl to read in another type.

<Cail> Well, working with the SDK has been very nice.. I've become a big fan of C++ vs. C, and its been very useful for some of the stuff that Action is all about..

<GabeN> Representatives for MODs interested in being shown at E3 and being at E3 should contact Harry. We'll figure out the best thing on a case by case basis.

<Harry-val> Impaler, we'll be dealing with that on a case by case basis. folks should mail me at het3@valvesoftware.com

<Gunny> When will Pro SDK be released, and was it to limited distribution or whoever asked?

<Harry-val> The ProSDK is going out right now

<Cail> New features of AHL: the skeletal animation system has allowed us to do some spectactular things with player models, I'm in the process of adding them in right now, and its looking really really cool...

<Harry-val> Folks who can sign the NDA and send it to us can get the ProSDK

<GabeN> Cail, is there anything that tripped you up in the SDK?

<Impaler> How can people sell their mod?

<Gunny> Question: In future releases will WorldCraft support complicated curves such as the ones found in Quake3?

<Phantom> Harry: You have no problems shipping it out to Australia?

<Cail> Yeah, I had some problems figuring out how the client.dll figured out which weapons are which (for the HUD)... never bothered to look in the pak file and realize it was all done through text files..

<Impaler> What version of the SDK built with? Standard or Professional?

<David-Valve> We've talked about a sphere tool and we're looking to curves as well. We don't see the need to do dynamic tesselation in the engine at this time.

<Harry-val> impaler, we have the Commercial Exploitation License almost ready to go. It will allow mod teams to sell their mods online.

<Impaler> err, What version of the SDK was TFC built with?

<Harry-val> We want to make it as easy as possible for mod teams to realize some fruits from their labors.

<Impaler> <DrAngryman|Reciprocity> Question: Can we expect any kind of official documentation to provie clear "entry-points" into the code, and to answer common concerns about the SDK?

<Ken-val> TFC was built with the multiplayer only version, though without any of the cleanup we did for the final SDK release.

<Yahn-val> Since we haven't started listing mods in the mod browser, maybe I'll take a stab at describing how it works in a general sence

<GabeN> Gearbox guys, what lessons have you learned digging into the SDK?

<Randy-Gearbox> Gabe, So far we're very impressed with the organization of the code.

<Gunny> Question: How complete do you want mods to be that are being showcased at E3?

<Suislide> hello

<David-Valve> Gunny - how important do you feel curved surfaces a la Quake 3 are?

<Randy-Gearbox> We've found we can prototype new models instantaneously by mirroring animation names for new creatures...

<Sam-RAS> Question: Are there plans to eventually do an Extremities-like compilation of mods for HL?

<GabeN> Randy, any limitations or capabilities that have surprised you either positively or negatively?

<Harry-val> Dallas, how are the models coming for Action Half-Life? Hello, btw, glad you could make it.

<Gunny> It would help making objects...

<Suislide> been here a while

<Suislide> been trying to get a +v :)

<Yahn-val> Basically, the way we determine what mods are installed, is to enumerate the directories off of the hl.exe directory looking for liblist.gam files. When a user enters the custom game screen, s/he sees those. When a user refreshes the list, we actually talk to a custom "mod master" server at WON.net to find out about all of the mods that are out there.

<Cail> Weapons in AHL will be similar to AQ2, our idea was not to radically change the way the game is played, but merely upgrade it to a new engine and take advantage of what we can to make it a better experiance for our players

<Impaler> <[FluidLogic]_Voidmaster> QUESTION: Without all the legal mumbo jumbo, what does the NDA boil down to? (3-4 sentence answer)

<Suislide> the models are going well. Finished up a new model for the hand cannon last night and plan to animate it tonight

<Yahn-val> In essense, the mod master keeps track of where mods should be installed, and other information about them, including the download ftp site. It's as simple as that.

<David-Valve> For now we're focusing on allowing more complex geometry without it breaking up when brought into the engine. We want to remove the unit grid limitations in Worldcraft, for example.

<Harry-val> Fluidlogic: it means the source to the DLL is not public domain, that you can't give it away or release it publicly

<ZaMoose> For the gearbox guys: What assets are you bringing to yor expansion, having worked on Prax War? What valuable lessons did you learn and how will it effect your work for Valve?

<Sam-RAS> Question: In Action Half-Life, will you be altering the obituary messages to a more quake-like mode?

<GabeN> We are thinking about a bunch of different ways to help the MOD authors. The MOD browser is one. The MOD booth at E3 is another. We have a distribution mechanism at retail called Further Data. WE are also working with the magazines to have regular distributions with their print versions. Doing something like Extremities might happen, but we'd like to see how these other mechanisms are working first.

<Randy-Gearbox> ZaMoose, We learned about using arbitrary polygons which make things like trees and terrain very nice...

<Ken-val> One cool feature Half-Life feature that only TFC uses is attaching one model to another. All you need to do is create a model, such as a gun or helmet, etc, and attached it to a player as a MOVETYPE_FOLLOW. It'll automatically merge to two models together so they appear on one. Rather than having a single weapon at a time, you can have as many as you want.

<Impaler> 'Tis a shame Prax War is gone. Great game, guys.

<Yahn-val> The best place to get a feel for the various entry points into the dll is to look at the interface definition sources ( eiface.h and cdll_int.h ). Those define the interfaces for the game .dll and the client .dll

<Impaler> concept should say.

<Randy-Gearbox> Technically, the Half-Life engine can render polygons, we just have to follow the rules of brushes now.

<Cail> Good question... we hadn't given that much thought yet, but I think that's a fairly high possibility... that whole area is going to take a bit of retooling anyhow, and I've always been a fan of the obituaries

<Suislide> I'll let Cail take that one. But I think we will probably have obits that work a lot like Action Quake's do. With specifics ones for combinations of location, weapon, etc.

<Randy-Gearbox> We have learned how to use arbitrary polygon tools to create terrain and other things and bring that into Half-Life.

<Phantom> Q: What future enhancements (if any) are you planning for the SDK

<Randy-Gearbox> But, now we're using purely Worldcraft...

<Sam-RAS> Cool. THe obituaries were a big plus for many gamers, especially the first time you saw someone "Get a third eye"

<Harry-val> We plan on enhancing some documentation for the SDK as time goes on, and enhancing Worldcraft for the community.

<Yahn-val> One thing that will be important ( at least for multiplayer mods ) is understanding how mods can become bandwidth hogs

<ZaMoose> say so you will document the way the networking is handled?

<Suislide> The documentation on the compiling tools in specific would be nice. Some of the stuff I have is pretty sparse.

<Sythe> Yahn: Could you go into that a little big...

<Sythe> Eeks, bit...

<Gunny> What will Valve do about chats in the MOD's you produce. This is a big consern with, I think, all of us.

<Yahn-val> The easiest place for this to occur is when you are coding sounds and effects. Be careful with creating of temporary entities, because sending out a lot of temporary entity data can flood out your clients ( unless they are on T1's ... )

<Gunny> What will Valve do about chats in the MOD's you produce. This is a big consern with, I think, all of us.

<ZaMoose> cheats, unny?

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> cheats?

<Gunny> Cheats will happen :P

<ZaMoose> errr gunnny

<Sam-RAS> chats? Cheats?

<Gunny> Whoa... Peeps can't spell ;)

<Sam-RAS> Clarify

<Gunny> Yeah, i think thats Cheats

<Sam-RAS> hehe.

<Gunny> Thats why I picked it ;)

<Yahn-val> Mod makes have a lot of control over where network messages are placed -- to a single client, multicast to the PAS ( potentially audible set ), to the PVS, to all players, etc. ) You should consider these things carefully when you emit any kind of sound or temporary entity data

<GabeN> If the Gearbox or AHL guys have questions for us, feel free to ask them. The other people would probably also be interested in the same issues.

<Yahn-val> The actual format of the messages should be evident from the SDK code examples

<Randy-Gearbox> Gabe, re: SDK. For us, it seems the system is very robust - much more so than previous games. We're using already coded objects to prototype new content (using same name tricks), then mirroring that code and changing it for our needs...

<ZaMoose> <Sci-Fair-Sport> Having signed an NDA to get the Pro SDK, can we release the source code for our mod once it is released?

<GabeN> Who are the other MOD makers here?

<Sam-RAS> Good question!

<ZaMoose> in true GNU spirit....

<Randy-Gearbox> Very quickly we've got new friendly characters a new enemy and new weapons doing things correctly in the game.

<Suislide-ateam> I am curious as to wether anyone is going to make an upgraded modeling tutorial. I have stumbled onto a lot of things not covered in there that most people simply wouldn't know Half Life can do without being told.

<Yahn-val> We take cheating very seriously. As soon as we verity any security holes, we fix it on our side, if possible, and update the product. To date, the instances of cheating in HL and TFC have been pretty minimal.

<Yahn-val> verify

<Suislide-ateam> or atleast a full list of events for the .qc files

<Harry-val> ZaMoose: you can release your source code as long as it doesn't release confidential information covered by the NDA

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> randy: had the friendly AI been imporived upon? kingpin has taken hl's ai a step further allowing them to climb over objects and around corners easily

<Sam-RAS> HARRY: Wouldn;t it be very difficult to do that?

<auto|ycus> Gearbox guys: are you planning on adding any major new functionality, for example - drivable vehicles?

<Yahn-val> If you run across what you believe is actual cheating ( as opposed to highly skilled players ), please let us know right away.

<GabeN> Who are the other MOD makers here today?

<Randy-Gearbox> Characters have behaviors based on their design. Clearly, since Valve wanted their soldiers to do complex things like rappel from aircraft they added the animation and AI to support those behaviors.

<Gunny> EHACHOOOOO!

<Harry-val> Sam-RAS: I couldn't say without a specific example.

<ZaMoose> <_Hac-DKF> Q: Would Valve consider allowing an outside source, NDA signed, to make an attempt at an unsupported Linux port?

<Harry-val> Suislide: We're working on compiling more modelling issues into a modelling FAQ.

<ZaMoose> mmmmmmm, Mesa Half-Life.....

<Langsuyar> can the other mod makers announce their presence with +m? :)

<Suislide-ateam> GabeM: Cail and I are here. Have no idea who most everyone else is though

<Suislide-ateam> err N

<GabeN> Sure. It's a lot of work, though.

<Sam-RAS> Well, we're working on new enemy code (for the Wraith). That code would only be found in the PSDK, and releasing it would viiolate the terms of that agreement, wouldn';t it?

<Randy-Gearbox> Autolycus, Right now we're playing with some remote controlled objects. Drivables may be along the lines of the speed adjustable tram...

<Sam-RAS> Im the representative from RadioActive Software. One or two others might drop in

<Harry-val> Sam: If it uses code covered by the NDA, then there could be an issue. I'm not a lawyer, and I don't pretend to play one on the net, so I'm not the best person to give you the guidelines.

<David-Valve> More Worldcraft stuff upcoming: in order to make testing and debugging maps easier, we're adding "Go to brush #" and "Go to map coords" commands to the next version of Worldcraft to make it faster to pinpoint problems reported by the tools.

<Sam-RAS> Hmmm. Well, we won't release the code for Chronicles for a while, so the point is moot for a while.

<Phantom> <ArcticCom> Question: I run a TFC server, and often people join the game with names like (OEC)BadBoy, etc., and I can't kick

<Phantom> them, or when they use non Alpha-Numeric letters in there name, I can't kick them either. Are you going to fix that soon? It makes it real

<Phantom> hard to Admin a server when you can't kick people that ACT rude and/or ruin the gameplay.

<Gunny> Q: As far as I know, the commercial exploitation licence doesn't give you a publishing deal with Sierra, but rather just allows you to commercially publish your mod with whomever will publish it. How interested is Sierra/Valve in actually publishing mods themselves?

<Randy-Gearbox> I'm curious about what new map animation entities end users may wish Gearbox to add to the Half-Life system...

<Yahn-val> you can kick by userid. The syntax is kick # userid. There is a space between the # sign and the userid. Use users on the server console to get the userids.

<Sam-RAS> Question: Will you ever release a tutorial on how you did the door cutting sequence in Half-Life: Uplink? Perhaps an .rmf?

<ZaMoose> Randy: How about animated textures?

<Randy-Gearbox> ZaMoose, it's already there :)

<auto|ycus> Sam: that's a good idea, i'll add that shortly to the erc. In short, its an env_beam (i believe) that follows two func_trains around the door. the end of the beam is shaded

<Phantom> Yahn-val: you've made ArcticCom delirious :)

<Sam-RAS> and the door being blown off...

<ZaMoose> <AdiTX> Are there any plans for simpler Half-Life editing tools? (ie; a program purely for scripted sequences)?

<Harry-val> Gunny: Sierra is always interested in publishing games. It's how they make a living :-) Folks should contact Doug Lombardi at Sierra if that's something they want to do. Valve is a developer, not a publisher.

<Sam-RAS> ok cool, thanks Auto. I meant to talk to you about that earlier.

<Phantom> <ParanoidMOD-Blackthorne> My location damage is maxing out at 3x and I'm wondering why or where in the code I am falling short...

<Sam-RAS> Hey RedKnight

<ZaMoose> <FLiPZ_DarkVoid-OSA-> Question: Will TF2 be using a different map format than HL/TFC?

<GabeNewell> Yes, TF2 will be using a different map format.

<ZaMoose> <FLiPZ_DarkVoid-OSA-> Question: Will TF2 be using a different map format than HL/TFC?

<ZaMoose> oops

<Suislide-ateam> he already got that one :)

<Sythe> ;)...

<Cail-ateam> I'm gonna head out, its been fun.. those interested in AHL should look for a big update some time in the next few days.. we hope to see you guys at E3...

<GabeNewell> Sorry, we all got disconnected for a second.

<ZaMoose> stupid up button

<Suislide-ateam> cya cail

<Harry-val> cya sam

<Suislide-ateam> icq me man

<Sythe> Thanks for comming Cail

<Sam-RAS> Bye Cail

<Cail-ateam> Been a pleasure...

<Sam-RAS> Catch you later.

<Mechanik_[OpUA]> Q: We all know that valve has a standard commercial exploitation licence that mod authors can get. Can you tell us the basics of this agreement?

<Suislide-ateam> I am still here, so if anyone has AHL questions let me know. I can also answer some modeling questions from a mod developer perspective if anyone needs it/

<Gunny> Question: How closely do Valve and Gearbox follow the mod scene?

<David-Valve> Hi ZaMoose, I gotted booted for a bit. Yes, the TF2 map format will be different.

<ZaMoose> Thanks, I got booted as well *grin*

<ZaMoose> hence the double post...

<JohnCook-TFC> I am going to talk briefly about some of the things we learned doing TFC.

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> gabe: when do you expect tf2 to ship? is there a remote chance iof sihpping in '99?

<Sam-RAS> I can answer some art/programming/mapping issues, as well as Questions about Half-Life: Chronicles and Half-Life: Level Five

<Randy-Gearbox> We look at every mod we can find...

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> wow, 2 typos in one sentence

<Yahn-val> Folks at HL are pretty interested in seeing what's out there. We love to d/l and play new things.

<Harry-val> Mechanik: It's really simple. Print it and sign it, send it to us, and you can sell your mod online. No royalties to send to Valve, it's money you make from your efforts. You guys work hard on mods, you should get the rewards.

<Randy-Gearbox> Ditto what Yahn said for Gearbox...

<Dave> Go ahead John - we'll hold off on questions...

<JohnCook-TFC> an important thing to think about when making a mod is performance, especially if you plan on having your mod played by 20+ people at a time

<Gunman-MrBlack> Hello, I'm MrBlack of the Gunman TC, please ask any questions you have.

<Mechanik_[OpUA]> Harry: wow, that's really cool, no royalties at all?

<Yahn-val> We think it's amazingly cool to see what folks can do with our technology. There are tons of really creative people out there.

<JohnCook-TFC> in TFC we had a big performance problem with the Traceline function being used too much, slowing down the server

<Gunny> John: Will the TF2 network code be much different from TFC's?

<JohnCook-TFC> we used Traceline every frame, for every player, to work out who they were currently looking at so we could display that players name in their HUD

<Harry-val> Mechanik: Yes, that's correct.

<stephen-gearbox> what effects do texturing models with multiple textures vs. a single texture have on speed after being converted to the .MDL format?

<JohnCook-TFC> but as it turns out that was using over 25% of the CPU on a dedicated server and in games with more than 25 people or so it produced not-so-acceptable performance

<Sam-RAS> <Will[OzDM> Is there a limit on the number of cvars you can have with HL?

<Yahn-val> re: TF2 network code. We are going to redo the networking and player physics code from the ground up for TF2. We are exploring a whole bunch of ideas on how to reduce our bandwidth usage, do better client side prediction, avoid having to hassle with rate settings and eliminating the client side frame rate cap that many players have to invoke.

<JohnCook-TFC> another thing to think about is usability

<Sam-RAS> Apocalypse: Is there an easy way to implement classes cde into HL?

<JohnCook-TFC> with a mod you don't get the luxury of shipping a printed manual with it :)

<Yahn-val> There is no limit ( except for available memory on your machine ) to the number of cvars. They are created in a linked list.

<Ken-val> multiple textures have no measureable speed it. If you have a lot of textures that use a lot of memory it'll slow down the early hardware cards, but that's a total useage issue, not really a # of textures issue.

<Suislide-ateam> Will Team Fortress2 have mesh deformation? The biggest drawback by far and the biggest time consumer for half life is the restrictions of rigid assignments.

<ZaMoose> <[APOC]Camperman> Is it possible for me to add a 6th weapon category? if so where would the changes have to take place?

<JohnCook-TFC> so having this like briefing screens explaining things, lots of signs in the maps directing people where to go, clearly highlighting important information in the HUD etc is very important

<Phantom> <[FluidLogic]Voidmaster> Will Valve continue to release 'small goodies' like player models and maps? (Or

<Phantom> even 'big goodies' like TFC?)

<JohnCook-TFC> it's rather important that new users have a good first-time experience with your mod

<Suislide-ateam> Will Team Fortress2 have mesh deformation? The biggest drawback by far and the biggest time consumer for half life is the restrictions of rigid assignments.

<Sam-RAS> <Apocaclypse> Is there an easy way to implement "Classes" code into HL?

<stephen-gearbox> is there any possible way to get transperency into a texture used in a MDL file?

<JohnCook-TFC> spending a lot of time working on the layout of your HUD interface is very important, and something that often isn't thought about until you've ran out of space on the players screen

<Ken-val> getting rigid vs weighted to work was mostly a 3DSMax 1.2 issue. With Max 2.5 and the latest character studio, it's easy. TF2 will have weighted vertex attachments.

<Suislide-ateam> so no hope of a retrofit for half life?

<JohnCook-TFC> in TFC we had some trouble with screen layout, and is something i wish we had spent more time on planning it out

<Gunny> QUESTION : Bots are currently impossible. When will a version of the SDK be released that fixes the pfnCreateFakeClient function? (required for proper bot development)

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> so far it has been admitted that tf2 will not be using hl's map format and network code ...is the hl/quake engine being discarded or just improved upon?

<Suislide-ateam> It would save me about a million headaches an hour. I talk to a LOT of modelors and that is everyone's big complaint.

<Ken-val> You can't mix transparent and non-transparent in the same object. I'd recommend creating two entities, one that renders solid and one the renders transparent and attach them together.

<David-Valve> We've started the ball rolling with HalfLife and TFC, and we're hoping you MOD developers will keep the excitement level high. We will continue to support your efforts in building cool mods and TCs for HalfLife.

<Yahn-val> Re: Apocalclype's question. Can you rephrase this question, I'm not sure we understand what you are asking.

<Gunman-MrBlack> yeah, like Gunman </shamless plug>

<JohnCook-TFC> gunny: yep, fixing that today

<Sythe> How is the MRM Tech. coming along in TF2?

<Impaler> argh

<Sythe> ;)

<Suislide-ateam> Ken-val, Is there any hope for you guys to retrofit Half Life with the code needed for weighted verts?

<Sam-RAS> <OGL-Shaggy> What is valve doing to improve the spectator chasing mode in TFC?

<Suislide-ateam> .onotice the silence is deafening

<Yahn-val> We're mostly improving upon the underlying code base ( an engine has a LOT of subsystems ). We're not discarding things that work great.

<Suislide-ateam> oops :)

<ZaMoose> Apocalypse was wondering about how to make a class based system (like TFC) easily (eg. what basics would you need to add/change)

<Gunman-MrBlack> silly Suislide-ateam

<JohnCook-TFC> one thing we found on TFC was just how much easier and powerful it is to develop a mod in C++ as opposed to doing TF1 in old quakeC

<Sam-RAS> <Apocalypse> How hard is it to implement class selection in HL? Such as the class selection in TFC?

<Mechanik_[OpUA]> easy guys, you're duplicating questions here

<Sam-RAS> Whoops, ZaMoose got the jump on me.

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> yahn: so most of the current limits with the hl engine will be fixed?

<Gunny> Will MOD makers have to worry about Halflife updates, much like Team Fortress did with Quake World? (New coding)

<Yahn-val> We are going to be enable the "real" spectator mode in a future update, so hopefully that will alleviate the spectator chasing issue. Maybe I'm not understanding this, though, can you /msg me with more detail so I can answer it.

<JohnCook-TFC> all the tools, debuggers, editor support, and just plain power and speed of C++ really helped us over something as limiting as quakeC

<stephen-gearbox> How can one make a portion of bodygroup transperent.. or does it in fact have to be an seperate object/entity...

<Ken-val> No weighted verts for Half-Life, you'll have to wait for TF2. Our animators pretty much got to the point where it wasn't a major issue, though it would have been nice.

<Harry-val> stephen: make them separate objects

<stephen-gearbox> k

<JohnCook-TFC> Apocalypse: we extended the player's HUD functionality to make it easier for any MOD to do menus, selection

<Ken-val> stephen-gearbox> it needs to be two entities. Transparency is controlled on a per-entity basis.

<Suislide-ateam> stephen-gearbox, he already said you can't do it. You have to attach entities and have on render transparent and one solid.

<Impaler> Will Valve be releasing any other mods like TFC?

<Suislide-ateam> ;)

<ZaMoose> Question for Suislide: how are the maps coming for AHL?

<Yahn-val> Our goal with any future updates to HL is not to break mods. Of course, we can't guarantee that won't happen, but we understand the pain of such things. Jay Stelly and I have been considering implementing some sort of interface versioning to provide seemless backward compatability. If we put out new functionality, we'd make every effort to leave the old interface intact, while still exposing the new interfaces to folks who want to use them.

<JohnCook-TFC> having come recently from the mod community, i have to say the mod browser is one of the most exciting things to happen for mod makers

<Suislide-ateam> all of our maps come from outside of the team (well most of them atleast). They seem to be going well but I doubt we will have the same support as Action Quake does initially (action quake has 100+ maps).

<Yahn-val> TFC was a lot of work and now we are focusing in on TF2. We don't have any plans on doing another full project of the scope of TFC before TF2. That doesn't mean that we won't be releasing content here and there, but nothing of the same scope as TFC

<Sam-RAS> Definitely. The mod browser has made things MUCH Easier on us. However, what are the variables? There's Multiplay_only, and what else?

<Sam-RAS> For everyone else...

<Mechanik_[OpUA]> I remember way way back reading in a Half-Life FAQ that you can turn off parts of a model at any point in an animation (e.g. you could hide a soldier's arm if it was supposed to be blown off). Did this functionality make it into the game, and if so is it just as simple to use as hiding the required part in the proper frames in 3dsMAX?

<JohnCook-TFC> there are 3 times as many people playing TFC as every were playing TF1 and that was after one week! and that's mostly due to our distribution method

<Impaler> <CPF|SgtCoolGuy> Question: Concerning TF2's map format switch. Can we plan on seeing some sort of voxel type engine features in TF2 to accomodate large outdoor areas?

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> yahn: when do you expect tf2 to ship?

<Sam-RAS> <Lingo> Will a weapon model work without full animation implemented?

<Ken-val> Updates of Half-Life shouldn't break any mods, the callback method we use allows us to add new functions without breaking old interfaces. We can't say it won't happen, but we're trying to make sure it's not something that always happens.

<Yahn-val> Sam, actually the system is for "typing" mods is pretty open. Mod authors can choose other descriptions as needed. Multiplayer_only has special meaning in that it disables the new game, hazard course, and save/load buttons in the launcher.

<Impaler> slow down guys

<ZaMoose> Indeed

<Gunny> ;)

<Randy-Gearbox> There is currently a limit on the amount of space in the .BSP file for entity data (128k). Is that an engine limit or do we have access to what we'd need to extend that limit in the game code?

<David-Valve> We aren't planning on any voxel support in TF2 maps.

<Suislide-ateam> The mod menu system is a great tool. I think part of TFC userbase has to be from not only the publicity and lack of other mods but a lot to do with it being included in the 1.009 update. I doubt most of us will see quite as big a booster from it in the userbase.

<Impaler> <aSkiFree-El_Cid> What is Valve offering in way of support you new mod developers?

<Ken-val> Sam-RAS> weapons don't actually need any animations to work, they just look better if they have them.

<Suislide-ateam> But it is definately light years ahead of Quake2 in that area

<auto|ycus> Suislide: are you going to have anything custom, map wise, that will need to be supported for map designers?

<Impaler> Questions for Gunman TC please.

<Randy-Gearbox> Did anyone at Valve see my question?

<Impaler> <Rumple> ok a real q now:.... Q:ok... what are you going to do about the "WAREZ" versions of the up and comming TF2 release?

<Yahn-val> Randy, the entity data limit is a limit in the bsp format. We'd have to recompile the engine in order to expand that, though that's not out of the question for a future update of HL

<Impaler> randy, may help to put them in bold

<ZaMoose> Bold it up, Randy...

<ZaMoose> nevermind *grin*

<Harrison-Fugitive> Question: How closely do Valve and Gearbox follow the mod scene? Do you guys have any particular mods you are eager to see?

<Yahn-val> We'd also have to recompile the tools

<stephen-gearbox> looking at most of the hl view weapons....some have their backfaces removed, and some dont...is there a speed hit for faces that are not visible in the players view?

<Impaler> Questions for RadioActive Software/Half-Life: Level Five/Chronicles?

<Harry-val> Suislide: All mods should see a big benefit from having the mods' existence braodcast to all Half-Life players playing online. Letting everyone know about your mod in the first place is taken care of for you.

<Ken-val> Mechanik> turning on and off models parts is there wherever you see a scientist holding or not holding the needle, as well as when they switch heads.

<auto|ycus> Suislide: are you going to have anything custom, map wise, that will need to be supported for map designers?

<Suislide-ateam> On the first release we won't. We have a site dedicated to our mappers and maps that has a dedicated staff. If any entities do come out that change the mapping we will let people know there. We really try to do as much on our end to mae new things without effecting the maps though. For example, all of the weapons will be placed as Half Life weapons and then the dll will replace those with our weapons.

<Mechanik_[OpUA]> Ken-val: oh yeah, forgot about that :-0

<Mechanik_[OpUA]> er, :-)

<JohnCook-TFC> suislide: if to get the great mods out the community we have to include them in future updates, that's something we'll look at. The mod browser is be a great distribution method for any mod maker at the moment.

<Ken-val> Mechanik> you can turn things on and off regardless of the animation. They're totally independant.

<ZaMoose> Hey Gearbox fellows, congrats on the new webpage, who does your webwork? *grin*

<Randy-Gearbox> ZaMoose, some guy...

<Mechanik_[OpUA]> Ken-val: exactly how does that work? Do you somehow reference the names of the objects as they were created in max?

<ZaMoose> I think I know him.... *grin*

<Wolfer|BH> Q: <McBa1n> Is Action Half-Life going to be free?

<Sam-RAS> Evan, have you seen Dante at all lately?

<JohnCook-TFC> an important thing is just to do a LOT of testing on your mod before release. with TFC we had continual playtesting and gametesting for the last few weeks before release, and that really added to the quality of the product

<Ken-val> Mechanik> Look at the 9mm handgun for an example. The silencer is part of a bodygroup that can be turned on and off. It's really simple.

<Suislide-ateam> definately. Don't misunderstand me. The mod interface is awesome for us but I just think that judging it's usage on TFC is a little misleading.

<Yahn-val> Re: Support: If you have questions about sierra and publishing etc., you should contact doug lomabardi at Sierra. If you have technical support questions or questions on how to get your mods listed, etc. contact het3@valvesoftware.com. He'll triage the questions and get them to the right people.

<RiotSW-DougF> Question:How complete do you want mods to be that are being showcased at E3?and How many do you plan on showcasing?

<Gunman-MrBlack> Gunman is talking with Valve at a possibility of appearing at E3

<evan2-RAS> yes, dante told me that he is working on a new little map for u of some sort

<evan2-RAS> i talked to him today

<Impaler> <bba> I want to get an accurate time of how long a player was in a level when the level ends (single player game). Where in the code would I do this?

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> mrblack: any luck finding a publisher?

<Sam-RAS> RadioActive Software may have 2-3 levels in shape for E3

<ZaMoose> So, when will we start seeing Valve/Gearbox .plans? And can we host em? *chuckle*

<Sam-RAS> Not quite sure.

<Impaler> I'll gladly help anyone with PR relations in my free time.

<Harry-val> DougF: we're happy to show 100 mods, if 100 mod teams send us working add-ons for Half-Life

<Gunman-MrBlack> sNeAk[halflife_net] we are currently talking with Valve, nice guys.

<Sam-RAS> We may also be showing off 1 or 2 new DM maps that will come with Chronicles

<Gunman-MrBlack> harry speaks!

<sNeAk[halflife_net]> hehe, sure are

<RiotSW-DougF> Harry: thanks

<JohnCook-TFC> This is Gabe. It's 6, and I'm going to jet. Some of the other Valve people will be staying on. Thanks for having us, and I hope the information is useful to the MOD developers. I think we've done a pretty good job building up a community and giving the MOD authors the tools they need to build on. We are looking forward to seeing what peoople build.

<Impaler> <aSkiFree-El_Cid> Where did the coders for Valve, Gearbox, A-Team, learn to code? Any sugestions for people who want to start?

<Impaler> <aSkiFree-El_Cid> Where did the coders for Valve, Gearbox, A-Team, learn to code? Any sugestions for people who want to start?

<Gunman-MrBlack> bye gabe.

<Yahn-val> Impaler, we don't have a way to query a user's connection time currently. We could add that if there is sufficient demand.

<Randy-Gearbox> We did the .plan thing at RBR. We have .plan built into gearboxsoftware.com but I'm not sure how much we'll be using them yet.

<ZaMoose> seeya gabe, thanks

<Impaler> Bye Gabe.

<Mechanik_[OpUA]> l8r gabe

<Sythe> Latz Gave

<Sythe> doh!

<David-Valve> I got my BSEE in college. That's a good place. :)

<Gunny> Heh

<Sythe> Gabe

<Harrison-Fugitive> Question: How closely do Valve and Gearbox follow the mod scene? Do you guys have any particular mods you are eager to see?

<Randy-Gearbox> Impaler: school, self motivation and experience are the best tools for learning how to program.

<David-Valve> I have to leave in 15 minutes. Are there any more Worldcraft questions before I go?

<Portal|BH> BSEE got you started programming? thats interesting

<Impaler> Worldcraft questions?

<Gunman-MrBlack> Worldcraft

<Impaler> Q: Support for plug-ins in WorldCraft?

<Wolfer|BH> Suislide: <McBa1n> Is Action Half-Life going to be free?

<Impaler> <[XCOM]Excalibur> *QUESTION: Would client bots best be implemented by using existing player spawning functions, or by modifying those functions, or through some other method?

<Impaler> oops

<Impaler> a little fast

<RiotSW-DougF> Harry: Will the Mod authors be able to help on the showcasing of their mod?

<Sam-RAS> I'm self-taught in C/C++ but I'll also be taking courses at Denison University oiver the next few years

<Gunman-MrBlack> David-Valv Will there there be any support for different 3d gemoetry brushes to work with?

<Sam-RAS> Oh yeah, Books. Buy them, read them

<Harry-val> Harrison: There are all sorts of mods that all of us would like to see. I know I remember the phrase "Headcrab Baseball" from an early chat, and damn if I don't want to play *that* game.

<Impaler> slow down guys...

<auto|ycus> David, is Worldcraft going to be developed over new titles, or is its time running out?

<Phantom> <Uleepera> Question: Where can i find information on creating maps in Worldcraft for Halflife TFC, and Where can i find a more advanced guide than the one located on the Half Life Editing Resource Center?

<Phantom> <Uleepera> Question: Where can i find information on creating maps in Worldcraft for Halflife TFC, and Where can i find a more advanced guide than the one located on the Half Life Editing Resource Center?

<David-Valve> No plans at the moment for plug-in support in Worldcraft. Maybe if we get really good feedback on what people would like to see it would become a higher priority.

<auto|ycus> :)

<Sam-RAS> C in 21 days baby

<Randy-Gearbox> David, Worldcraft ?: How come texture mapping coordinates in Worldcraft don't match compiled maps in cases where textures are rotated?

<Mechanik_[OpUA]> slow down!

<Harrison-Fugitive> WorldCraft Question: What will be the new features you will be adding in the next update?

<stephen-gearbox> the counterstrike mod look pretty promising...

<stephen-gearbox> looks

<Gunman-MrBlack> Worldcraft Question: will there be any additions of odd shaped brushes like dodecahedrons for example?

<ZaMoose> So what ever happened to the Tron and Joust mods we heard so much about?

<David-Valve> Whoah. I just had a big lag. Hang on while I scrollback...

<Phantom> <[XCOM]Excalibur> *QUESTION: Would client bots best be implemented by using existing player spawning functions, or by modifying those functions, or through some other method?

<Gunman-MrBlack> oh hush up ZaMoose! =D

<ZaMoose> *grin*

<Gunman-MrBlack> will anyone EVER ask questions about the glorious Gunman TC for Half-Life?? =D

<Sam-RAS> Yeah, we'll be putting in the Pod from Seven Days as a new brush :-)

<Mechanik_[OpUA]> god everyone is fleeing like rats from a sinking ship :-)

<ZaMoose> I know I'd like to play some light cycle in Hl...

<David-Valve> Autolycus: WC will definitely be our level design tool for the forseeable future. And that's a good 2 years or so.

<Harrison-Fugitive> Mr. Black: Will you be adding new features to gunman?

<Phantom> <[XCOM]Excalibur> *QUESTION: Would client bots best be implemented by using existing player spawning functions, or by modifying those functions, or through some other method?

<Gunman-MrBlack> Harrison-Fugitive: we have MANY tricks up our sleeves. defintly a LOT of cool weapons/enemies/ect

<Impaler> congrats to the GamesNET team!!

<Wolfer|BH> sorry about that

<Impaler> big congrats!!

<Impaler> We just survived a server split in less than 5 mins.

<Portal|BH> heh

<Wolfer|BH> bah, shouldnt have happened

<Sam-RAS> Questions about RadioActive Software Projects? Give me a swift boot to the head for more info!

<Harry-val> I have to get going, thanks for having this chat.

<ZaMoose> Thanks Harry

<Mechanik_[OpUA]> thanks harry, bye

<RiotSW-DougF> thanx

<Gunman-MrBlack> harry! D=

<Sythe> See ya harry! Thanks for commming!

<Sam-RAS> Bye harry