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Darksaber's X-Wing Station

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The term Dynamic Goal is really a misnomer. It cannot really present different mission goals in accordance to what the player chooses to do. All dynamic mission goals can really do is drive the story along by presenting a set of goals after one set has been completed.

In theory, however, you can use dynamic goals to make a mission more varied and branch out along different paths according to the choices a player makes. But this requires a bit of extra effort and the use special little tricks in "programming" your mission in conjunction with the use of the Arrival, Departure, and Jump tab conditions. To really make a mission truly dynamic is complex to explain, because the mission structure wasn't really designed with branching story lines in mind, plus it hasn't even been attempted yet at the time of this writing.

Use of the Arrival, Departure, and Jump tabs' conditions are for the mission side of a dynamic mission. They are what gives the ships in a mission a set of commands to carry out in response to what the player does. This side of dynamic mission creation is not covered in this tutorial. We will however be focusing more on the goals side of dynamic mission creation, the Active Sequence.

The Active Sequence is used when a goal is completed. After one or more goals are completed, one or more new goals appear on the goals summary. It is particularly useful when you want to create an element of surprise. For example, you could have pirates jump the player's ship. Say your primary goal is to enter Region 2, the Lylat System. Once you have reached the Lylat System, that goal will become complete. Another goal that tells you to drive the pirates off pops up on your screen just when the first laser bolts hit the player's shields.

This tutorial is for users of all registered versions of AlliED by Troy Dangerfield, the premier mission editor for X-Wing Alliance by Totally Games. It assumes you already have basic knowledge of creating missions with AlliED. Use of dynamic goals is considered an advanced form of mission creation. For the purposes of this tutorial, I have attempted to simplify things so more novice creators can pick up the concept.

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There are two Active Sequence boxes on the AlliED datapad. One is located in the FG Goals tab in the middle of the datapad. The other is located in the GGoals tab in the bottom right corner of the datapad and triples as the Active Sequence for the Primary, Prevention, and Secondary goals. We will look at the FG Goals tab first.

By putting 1 or 2 in the Active Sequence box, that goal will show up in the mission by default when the mission begins. By putting a 3 in the box, that will be the next goal to show up after the first two goals have been completed. Putting a 4 will result in that goal popping up once #3 is completed, and so on. You can use the same number for more than one goal if you want each of those goals to pop up after another goal is completed.

Inserting a number 7 in the Active Sequence box makes that goal invisible until it has been failed or completed. This applies to the box on the GGoals tab as well and is especially useful for keeping prevention goals hidden. Many times you will want the player to fail the mission if he or she blows up friendly capital ships and space stations. Making that Must NOT, Bonus Must NOT, or Prevention Goal invisible is a nice way to keep your Goals Summary neat and tidy if you have a lot of friendlies that you don't want destroyed by an overzealous fighter jock.

(Note: It is a good idea to make the player craft's FG Goal such that the mission is failed if it is destroyed. Having that goal invisible by using the Number 7 Active Sequence makes the mission that much nicer because it really should be common sense that you fail the mission if you die. With X-Wing Alliance, this is not the case, so you have to manually program it in.)

So what if you don't have two goals for the start of the mission? No sweat, just skip putting a number 1 in the first goal's Active Sequence box and put a number 2 in there instead. When that one goal is completed, Goal #3 will pop up.

Now select the GGoals tab. This sequence applies for ALL FOUR conditions in the Primary Goals. Or if you have the Prevent Goals or Secondary Goals radio button selected instead, it will apply to ALL FOUR of those respective conditions.

So, to recap, you have one Active Sequence for each of the 8 FG Goals on the FG Goals tab. On the GGoals tab, you have one Active Sequence for the four Primary Goals conditions, one for the four Prevention conditions, and one for the four Secondary conditions. Putting a 1 or 2 in those boxes will make that goal show up in the mission at the beginning. Each ascending number after that is the order in which those goals will appear after the others numbered below it have been completed. Inserting a number 7 will make that goal invisible until it has been completed or failed.

This concept can be more than a little confusing. Hopefully this tutorial helped with your understanding. If you have problems, please be sure to post on the X-Wing: Alliance Upgrade Project forums and someone will likely come along and help you out. Be sure to mention you have used this tutorial. Just remember, the first time testing the mission after implementing dynamic mission goals will probably result in the appearance of bugs. Trial and Error is simply the only way to go.

Chris.

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