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A L | E N S =========== The Total Conversion. Doom conversion by Justin Fisher. With Secret Level by Richard Love. My Internet address is: MISC335@csc.canterbury.ac.nz so send heaps of feedback everyone. In this file: First, a brief guide to getting AliensTC to work, Second, a guide on how to play it. (AliensTC doesn't play like doom, and there are a few fundamental differences, I strongly recommend you read this before playing Aliens the first time.) Third, everything else. PART ONE - Setting up Aliens TC. You need Doom version 1.2, or 1.666, it must be a registered. When unzipped and installed, AliensTC takes up about 6 megabytes of disk space (plus the original zip file). All the files that make up AliensTC should be put in the same directory that DoomV1.2 is in, ie unzip it into your doom directory. All of the following files must be present: ALIENS.EXE -INSTALL PROGRAM ALIENS.TXT -YOU'RE READING IT. DEHACKED.EXE -.EXE EDITOR DMSTR.EXE -.EXE EDITOR DMGRAPH.EXE -GRAPHICS REPLACER DMADDS.EXE -SPRITE PWAD CREATOR JF-0.WAD -SPRITE WAD JF-2.WAD -LEVELS, TEXTURES JF-3.WAD -SOUNDS JF-4.DEH -.EXE PATCH JF-5.GIF -EXTRA TEXTURE JF-6.GIF -EXTRA TEXTURE JF-7.GIF -EXTRA TEXTURE JF-8.GIF -EXTRA TEXTURE JF-9.GIF -EXTRA TEXTURE JF-10.GIF -EXTRA TEXTURE JF-18.STR -.EXE PATCH JF-19.DEH -.EXE PATCH JF-20.STR -.EXE PATCH Note: When distributing Aliens-TC, you need only include the above files, the files listed below will be creating during the installation, but you must give ALL of the above files to get the desired result. The following file are created during installation, if any of these gets deleted or corrupted, Aliens-TC will not un- install. Make sure TC is un-installed before deleting ANYTHING JF-1.WAD -COMPLETED SPRITE PWAD JF-11.DEH -CLEAN .EXE PATCH JF-12.GIF -CLEAN TEXTURE JF-13.GIF -CLEAN TEXTURE JF-14.GIF -CLEAN TEXTURE JF-15.GIF -CLEAN TEXTURE JF-16.GIF -CLEAN TEXTURE JF-17.GIF -CLEAN TEXTURE To play, simply type ALIENS, and hit enter, Select the INSTALL option, let it run it course, and exit into dos. Run doom, and it will run Aliens-TC NOTE - AliensTC makes large changes to the Doom.exe file, so YOU MUST NOT DELETE ANY ALIENS-TC FILE UNTIL YOU HAVE UN- INSTALLED IT. Otherwise you will be stuck with the changes it has made until you can get a copy of every file from an INSTALLED system, just unzipping TC again and then un-installing will not work, you must copy ALL the Aliens-TC files from a directory in which it has been successfully installed on the SAME doom version, then place those files in your affected doom directory, then you can un-install as normal. If Aliens.exe will not un-install, you can type; > Aliens /Force This will override it's error checking and it will un-install despite file conditions. Use at your own risk :) I take no responsibility for resulting problems, but if you E- mail me, I should be able to get you the stuff needed to undo patches. PART TWO - Playing the game! The Story so far... (Skip this if you want to) LB4-26. The terraforming colony has stopped transmitting or responding. There is a possibility that this is the result of an unknown parasitic alien species. Against this possibility, a military force has been mobilised to investigate. This information comes from Flight Officer Ripley, she claims the Nostramos set down on LB 4-26 in order to investigate a transmission, an unidentified alien ship was discovered. While exploring the ship, a crew member was disabled by an alien parasite, which deposited an egg inside him before dying. He became host to an embryo and was killed as it exited his body. The alien quickly grew and began to attack crew, usually capturing them, we assume for food. Flight Officer Ripley was the only survivor, she destroyed the xenomorph by opening an airlock when the alien was inside. According to Officer Ripley, the original parasite came from a large "egg", and that there were thousands of such eggs in the hold of the alien vessel. If this is correct, and members of the colony found the alien ship, there may be hostile alien activity in or around the colony. Your job is to find out why the colony has stopped responding, and if a xenomorph is involved, destroy it. [Classified] Ensure that live samples are secured for laboratory study. Firstly, this game is built around suspense and atmosphere, you can completely destroy this by using cheats to find out in advance what everything is. (ooh, I wanna see an alien, Light Amp cheat, degreelessness, happy ammo etc.) RESIST THE TEMPTATION! The first time you play this will be the best. Not knowing what is around the next corner is what doom is all about, in other words, when you use cheats, there is only one possible outcome - you complete the level, there is absolutely no challenge, which means there is no FUN. As I said, the first time you play a level is the best, I've put a lot of work into this conversion and I require that you enjoy it :-), these are a few basic requirements 1) pull the curtains and turn out the lights 2) turn down the monitor brightness so that what is meant to be dark is actually dark. 3) set aside at least an hour when there will be little distracting background noise. 4) Set the music to about half the volume of the sound FX (so it's there, but not consciously there) 5) read the rest of this file (-: 6) Play until your nervous system is overriding your motor control and you can't stop shaking long enough to calm your heart... Now, back to the subject. AliensTC differs from doom in a few ways; For starters, some standard doom tactics either don't work, or result in quick and messy death, don't approach this as another doom conversion, treat it like something new, pay attention, don't slip into Auto-kill-&-Collect mode and finish the game while thinking of other things, get immersed, look at the architecture, predict the layout and how it affects your plans etc. Switches - they don't automatically do something good, think before switching them, you should be able to work out what they do. A switch next to a door operates that door, there are three obvious types - Green switch; opens the door for either 6 seconds or until it is closed with another switch. Green and Red switch; same as above, but usually only opens for 6 seconds. Red switch; these operate security doors, once hit, the door closes permanently. These can be used to seal off areas of the colony, forcing the aliens to find an alternative route, and allowing much better defense planning, even adding and element of strategy to the game. (Also, in some cases these will show up on your automap at the start of the game, make use of the automap.) Switches usually operate something in the immediate vicinity (eg a lift, door, landing platform), if you can't see anything for it to operate, take a risk. :-) Weapons - you can have up to six weapons at any one time, they are; Fists: Not a good idea Pistol: Still not a good idea Shotgun: Good all purpose weapon, (you're all familiar with these three) Pulse Rifle: Combination weapon - 10mm Assault rifle with underslung grenade launcher. Press 4 to use the rifle, or 5 to use its grenade launcher, (generally not a good idea... , BTW I used some artistic license on this one, you can tell which setting you're using by the colour of the LCD display, Green - rifle, red - Grenades.) Smart Gun: The 2 metre electric monsters on the suspension-arms, carried by Drake and Vasquez. These are pretty specialised and there isn't much ammo for them, save it for those special moments. Cargo bay Loader: Not designed for combat but pretty intimidating, a last ditch attack when you've run out of ammo. (Replaces the Fists when you get it.) I have left a few of these weapon changes pretty superficial, as they are nicely balanced, but there are still a few subtle changes. Note: I have disabled weapon 7 in such a way as to be a liability to those who cheat :) (ie, it will slow you down when you can least afford it) The Missions - Each level roughly corresponds to a part of the film (Aliens. If you havn't seen it, it doesn't matter but it is a great film.), and you will find each level a lot more coherent if you know what you're meant to be doing. Level 1 - Secure the area before moving on further into the complex. Level 2 - Atmospheric Processor; find the colonists, their PDTs indicate they are all deep in the lower levels of the plant. Level 3 - Medlabs & Operations; seal off medlabs and operations closing the security doors and blowing away whatever gets through. Caution - there are too many aliens to take out yourself so _use_ the security doors and don't be afraid to retreat. (Stealth is a good idea) When Medlabs is secure, crawl down the main pipeline to the landing pad. (to patch in the colony transmitter.) Level 4 - Escape from Medlabs; like a normal Doom level, retreat from medlabs and try to get to the landing pads. Level 5 - In the film, the marines made their escape from the Atmospheric Processor on the APC. You don't have one, Slog it out on foot. (This level is designed for deathmatch, and is big, to aid in "The Hunt", there are proximity indicators scattered throughout. This was meant to be E2M3, but I had to shift it to allow the secret level to work properly. Level 6 - Atmospheric Processor; the search for Newt, find the sector indicated on your automap (red square). This is another good deathmatch scenario - very non-linear. Level 7 - Atmospheric Processor; escape from the hive and try to make it back to the Processor landing pad. Level 8 - The Sulacco; Destroy the Queen and complete the episode! Secret Level - The derelict alien host ship. This level was made by Richard Love, hence is the only level I have played in which I didn't know what is coming next - ie playing my creation the way others will. It was terrifying. It was great. Extra Levels - (E3L1), originally part of E2M5 D-match wad, the wad was so huge it didn't run at a playable speed, let alone networked. I split it, and made this half a level on it's own. Play this on Ultra Violence to see what yer made of! It's probably the hardest level, even I find this one a challenge. (E3L2), Level one with a slightly larger populace... Just a bit o' fun. There is no unstable nukage in Aliens, the nearest thing is filthy water. Hence barrels do NOT explode (I know you'll all hate that one, but I had no choice - Doom just doesn't have enough damage frames.), and lakes of water will not harm you either. Sorry :) That's all you _need_ to know. The Aliens - There are five main types; Warriors, Drones, Queens, Face Huggers, and Eggs. Be warned, the aliens have extremely corrosive internal fluids, if you fill them with too much lead or grenades, the result will be a shower of lethal bio-acid. Eggs hatch, so shoot them quick. Drones can spit bio-acid at you (I put that in for more variety, it can get monotonous if all the foes are too similar.), you've proved yourselves to dangerous to the hive to be captured, the warriors will just concentrate on ripping you to shreds, but that doesn't mean a frontal assault... Proximity indicators - These are blue panels inset in the walls of some levels. When you walk past one, two red lights flash back and forth for 30 seconds. These are for Deathmatch. I like _big_ d-match levels, the concept of The Hunt, the problem is, players leave so little evidence of passage - the occasional sound, or corpse (which could have been there since who knows when.) The proximity indicators just make the hunting a little easier. (And introduce new tactics with players who use them.) Speaking of Deathmatch.... All levels in TC are designed with deathmatch in mind, ie E2M2 is a fairly linear level, but in d-match, you start with all keys which changes the level into the non-linear style so vital to d-match. Most levels (with the possible exception of E2L7) work well for d-match without needing the remove- monsters option (v1.666), as you do not _have_ to encounter them to meet your opponent, but the option is there... Now play the game! (type Aliens to install, Doom to play) PART THREE - Everything else. More background information: The Xenomorph - There appear to be several stages to the xenomorphs life cycle, and two, possibly three distinct types. Comparison to an ant colony is a suitable analogy, using that analogy, the types are Warriors, Queens, and Drones. It is not known whether drones exist differently to warriors, it is possible that the warriors perform the tasks of drones, but in most other similar observed social structures, both warriors and drones exist and are of a different makeup. In Xenomorph hives, we suspect that when a warrior (or drone) is removed from it's queen for a long period of time, it develops into a queen, able to lay eggs and hence create a new hive. This suggests that a queen somehow limits the growth of aliens around it, probably a secreted chemical. The life cycle is equally fascinating. The queen "lays" large eggs, these eggs are capable of staying dormant for extremely long periods of time (how long is unknown), and yet still hatch quickly after being disturbed. a fully developed "facehugger" hatches from them. These are the parasitic element of the life cycle, they are like large fleshy spiders. When a host is found, the parasite attaches itself over the face (hence the name) by means of its long legs and tail (which is wrapped around the neck), whereupon it inserts a tube down the trachea, and deposits an egg or embryo under the rib cage. The egg will grow for about a week before leaving the host body by breaking through the ribcage. (resulting in the death of the host), the small "chestburster" then rapidly grows into either a queen or warrior. The Warriors capture hosts and immobilize them in the hive for the facehuggers (from eggs layed by the queen, and presumably nurtured by the drones.). At all stages in the life cycle, the alien has extremely corrosive body fluids, pressurised under the exoskeleton or skin. The fluids are a sort of biological acid, and is much stronger than concentrated HCl. I'm tempted to give more detailed account of the hardware in the film, but I won't. Bugs in ALIENS-TC. There are none. My work is flawless :-) No, the effects of selecting weapon 7 under the ammo cheat is not a bug, it's me being nasty to people who cheat. Alright; There are a few inconsistencies, most notably Apone and others giving advice when, in the movie analog, they wouldn't be present. (or alive). Doom v1.2 has a limit of 16 transparent linedefs onscreen, if you get a lot more than this, you start getting huge chunks of HOM (Hall Of Mirrors) effect. 16 two-sided linedefs isn't much, and in some places, I have had to exceed this. The worst areas are the outdoor part of E2M3, and the cargo bay in E2M8. Step back for a panoramic view and you may end up with sections of the screen flashing. In E2M4, at the start where the aliens fall through the roof, some of them don't... When that happens, if you walk to close to them, you will run against them like an obsticle, and start taking damage as they merrily rake you. I can't figure out why they don't fall like the rest, so you're stuck with it. I suspect there are a few other minor bugs, but none spring to mind right now. It's not really a bug, But the Queen alien graphics are a bit of a mess. I have a good excuse. The queen graphics were made from video shots of a model, the problem was, I don't own any of the equipment necessary, which resulted in time and other constraints, the most destructive being the lack of light control (it wasn't in a studio), resulting in different light effects through different frames. I was able to compensate to a degree on the resulting images by converting them to 24bit and using light filters, but the resulting queen is still very patchy and irregular. Things-I-didn't-have-time-to-put-in-but-will-in-the-supplement LOTS of things. The episode map at the end of each level, a better smartgun explosion, lots more destroyable scenery, an egg-laying queen hanging from the nest roof, A proper sky texture, better sounds, lots of things... Making your own Aliens-TC levels. I doubt it, but if anyone really wants to make a TC level, send me Email, so I can send you info on what goes where, what replaces what etc. It'll be a real mess otherwise. Weird and unconstant Things: I ran out of graphics and Things when making this conversion, the result is massive and chaotic frame table patches (so I could steal every sprite not otherwise in use), if you want to see how doom runs without the graphics patches, but _with_ the .EXE patches, just run DOOMEXE instead of DOOM, the results are... strange Thanks to: (in no particular order) Richard Love - for creating level 9, (the secret level) and the textures peculiar to it. Glenn Fisher - for writing the custom editors, and the ALIENS.EXE file. Me - For doing all the hard work! (Nobody reads this bit anyway, so why not :) Darryn Pat - for the use of the video blaster (to scan the queen model.) Darryn Yee - for supplying all sorts of things necessary for scanning a model, including his home :-) Jordan Yee - for supplying the model alien queen to be scanned. My 486 - for being so reliable, fast and having 24bit graphics Vesa is an absolute _must_. Morpheus - for sending me nodebuilders, and giving me extra D/L time on his BBS. IKON Attendees - for giving the beta a thorough playtesting. (It's much better now) :) ID Software - Take a guess... a wild stab in the dark, you shouldn't miss at point blank. Terry Pratchett - For giving DOOM exemption from the idea that VR should complement rather than replace reality. The authors of all the editors, viewers, nodebuilders, hacks, FAQ's, out there. The many people who have aided by telling me where I could find various utilities, giving me new editors etc. To anyone even remotely connected with this, who would like a mention. (That was it. Oh, you blinked?) Me, Again... That's it for now, and in case you missed my name and net address (which I've blatantly plastered everywhere I could), send feedback, comments, problems, criticism etc to: J.Fisher@csc.canterbury.ac.nz And above all, DISTRIBUTE Aliens-TC! (I want to see how far it will get :-) BTW, if anyone is interested in what I'm doing next (The hope is that everyone says "WOW, this guy is a GENIUS!, I can't _wait_ to see what he does next... :-)" ), but if anyone _is_ interested, with the advent of Doom Ver1.666, which allows 64 instead of just 16 two-sided linedefs, it's time to make some M C Escher style rooms, probably as a part of a larger wad loosely based on the film "Labyrinth" (no, I have no idea how you spell it.) where they can form rooms of Jareths castle. Another thing I would like to do is actually make a wad which uses the _origional_ doom textures, they are increadible graphics and it seems such a shame to continually over-write them, and I'm sure I can use them in ways people never thought of before. (No offence all you level builders, but in my (not excessivly vast) experience of Pwad levels, the true doom levels, especially episode one, still reign supreme in pure imagination. Especially when you compare them to the ever growing number of Pwads that are just based on a simplistic concept, ie when viewed in automap, the rooms form words, or the whole wad is so repetitive that you only need to see a tiny bit to be able to draw the whole thing - a circle divided into pie slices, four rooms that connect throught the middle (popular idea in many D-match wads, the reason invariably being "equal starting points" (I prefer more varied hunting grounds). etc As you can see from reading this, I really like interesting locations and archetecture, (rather than levels made up of rooms connected by doors and corridors, of which I am often guilty) Even with it's limits, doom can make fantastic worlds, places that have never existed, or ever will. The power to experience a world of your own creation is what I like about making doom locations, (and I'm getting better too :-), I know a few will disagree - there are many Pwad levels in which the effort has been put into gameplay, rather than enviroment, leaving default textures, not worrying about unpegging doorways etc. I hope Aliens-TC has a high level of both elements, let me know what you thought. 'Till the next virtual creation then... (If I can find some free time... :-(