A beginners tutorial?

What do you want to see in Armagetron soon? Any new feature ideas? Let's ponder these ground breaking ideas...
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Thilo
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A beginners tutorial?

Post by Thilo » Sat Mar 28, 2009 12:56 pm

Sorry if this is a redundant suggestion, but it bothers me that right now more people are playing online tic-tac-toe than Tron.

I think most of us agree that it'd be more fun if more people played Tron. If there were 10 populated CTF servers, I'd be a happy guy. So how come nobody plays it? I love Sine's movie, but I don't think poor marketing is the cause for such a small tronbase. There's a tron movie, there was Tron Guy, and it's included in many linux distros. I think the reason nobody plays it is because it's not beginner-friendly.

When I tried Tron for the first time, it didn't make sense. "How come sometimes I go underneath walls and sometimes I die? Is this a dice roll? Screw this."

I might be stupid, but there's a lot of people as stupid as me who give up Tron because they don't intuitively understand the physics of the game right off the bat. I know instructions are in the wiki, but it's rare for anyone to enjoy learning a game in that fashion.

I think the best method for making new players stick is an in-game tutorial. You load the game, and in the main screen is a Tutorial button. You click it and it takes you to a grid where it goes over the basics of the game. Terminology, camera angles, digging, etc.

And the idea of a story line has been mentioned a lot. It might be cool to integrate the tutorial into a story. Or maybe psuedo-story. With characters but no real plot, but could possibly evolve into a plot later.

Maybe show two bikes - you and your instructor, with a bobbing head in the corner of the screen. "Welcome to your new light cycle. I'm Frank, I'll be your instructor. I can see you have talent, so let's run over these instructions right quick so we can send you out to do some killing. First off, I see you can turn fine, but let's give you some speed..." etc..

I know any developer is going, "Yeah right! Who is this asshole? That's way too much work." But I have no idea how much work is involved. All I know is that that's what Blizzard did with Starcraft and apparently it works.

I can't develop worth beans, but if a developer is at all interested in this idea, I'd be willing to write it all out and do voice-overs or whatever I can.

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Lucifer
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Post by Lucifer » Sat Mar 28, 2009 1:22 pm

Actually, an in-game tutorial is on the to-do list. There's just a lot of code rewriting that has to be done before we can even think of what such a thing might look like.
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Re: A beginners tutorial?

Post by epsy » Sat Mar 28, 2009 2:37 pm

Thilo wrote:When I tried Tron for the first time, it didn't make sense. "How come sometimes I go underneath walls and sometimes I die? Is this a dice roll? Screw this."
Agreed, that's stupid.

For the rest, Lucifer is right.

Thilo
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Post by Thilo » Sat Mar 28, 2009 3:45 pm

Awesome. Alternatively -

Hypothetically, let's say I made an instructional video in flash, and hypothetically again, let's say it's uber badass.. could it potentially be put into the gameuntil a real tutorial is built?

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Post by epsy » Sat Mar 28, 2009 3:59 pm

We're not too keen of the flash formats. If it had to be a video it would rather be ogg(theora+vorbis). Best would be a demorecord (something which has yet to be coded first) with, possibly, ogg(vorbis) voiceovers.

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Lucifer
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Post by Lucifer » Sat Mar 28, 2009 4:10 pm

Even so, it would require almost as much coding to put a video in the game as it would to do the first thing.
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Post by DDMJ » Sat Mar 28, 2009 6:27 pm

I love the idea, but for now, how about someone expand the default /help menu to include a wide range of topics about the game to help beginners? This could be a neat project in it's own:

/help playercontrols
/help playercontrols_customization
/help fortress
/help fortress_grinding
/help fortress_terminology
/help sumo
/help highrubber
/help highrubber_digging
/help ctf
/help ctf_objectofthegame

...stuff like that (just a quick, rough list)

But the idea would be to globalize it so it's included into the default server config files, similarly to how they currently have help for authentication and chat commands in the /help menu.

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Post by epsy » Sat Mar 28, 2009 6:59 pm

Start writing them!

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Tank Program
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Post by Tank Program » Sat Mar 28, 2009 7:27 pm

DDMJ wrote:/help fortress_grinding
/help highrubber_digging
People probably aren't going to know what grinding/digging are right out of the box.
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Post by wrtlprnft » Sat Mar 28, 2009 7:31 pm

Tank Program wrote:
DDMJ wrote:/help fortress_grinding
/help highrubber_digging
People probably aren't going to know what grinding/digging are right out of the box.
That's why you get an overview including descriptions (actually titles) when you type just /help :-)
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