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NumberWan

Chapter I Download

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So we're done polishing most of the things and Chapter I of The Dark Pastime mod is here to download.

Sorry for being so long in fixing the whole pack.
I must say this was probably the most difficult thing, also because this was the first time it was run on a new machine of a completely new User. I would like to thank everyone for helping us to make all this possible – both those, who contributed a lot to making maps, scripts, voice-acting, etc. and the ones, who were patient enough to play through all the missions and tell us about their opinions on the mod.

I hope this Chapter would be of some fun for you. Just remember, that this was a project made by fans and in most cases we had no professional experience in making the locations, missions, voice-acting and sound, as well as making the story itself (which was created by Wuhan and me back in 2004!). I would like again to add, that we made a great step forward thanks to Olgo, who added a lot to the very many aspects of The Dark Pastime.

So here is the download link below.

Download The Dark Pastime Chapter I

Important note: The link contains several files, follow the Installation Instructions from DP_Install_guide.txt via the link to set the mod correctly (!!!).

Important note 2: The mod still has a few minor bugs, which due to JA specifics can't be fixed at the moment (despite all our efforts). Check ReadMe files for information and possible solutions.

Important note 3: We might change the link and update the files during these days, should we find any new bugs in the mod.

 

 

 

 

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There is a glitch, which I adressed in the ReadMe file. Currently we are looking into this problem and perhaps we've found a solution.

So I'll update the pack soon. 

dg1995 likes this

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Finished it today.

I like this that this mod uses some underdeveloped ideas of JK 2.(Stealth and controlling imperial droid)

Is there any chance to make the swoop bike level brighter than the way it is ? I personally felt that it was too dark.

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This was a very pleasant surprise! Very reminiscent of jk1 level design at some points, which i absolutely love. Some areas are way too dark though.

Currently stuck on the dvorn academy mission, can't seem to find the data in the archives section, where is it?

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So, I've completed the chapter about two weeks ago and after having to do some things I can write something like a review.
And this review will not be spoiler free, so it's not for those who still haven't tried it but intends to do it, obviously.

Spoiler

The first thing is, that I actually already played the demo of the mod, which was released on May 1, 2008. That demo already had the first two levels of this chapters and a part of a third one (just a cutscene). It actually had many flows with the first map which were due to unrealistic lightning design on the part of Imperial Dreadnought that was made by the mod team. The level design itself had feel that something was laking, but I can't say what was really wrong there. However, the Ord Mantell level was mostly welldone and really felt like something a good mod.
Coming to the Chapter I we have these two first levels, the new cutscene in-between, the cutscene in the end of the demo which extends to the hub level of New Republic HQ and after that four (or I would say actually three) levels on the Empire controled planet Dvorn. I was really relieved to see how designs improved over the years. Imperial Dreadnought now have realistic lightning, the location feels alive thanks to numerous additions and this feeling of laking is nowhere to be found. Same goes to the Ord Mantell level, it's now even better, but I was already satisfied with it in demo, so there is nothing much to say about it. The New Republic HQ is an interesting idea of having to read information about mission, it gives you the feeling of prequels through the music and design which is something I will make an accent later. But the main thing is that this hub level adds immersion to the mod. And now, the very thing that I was really curious about the mod after playing demo. What it has in store on the planet Dvorn. The first thought was after playing the demo "The stealth mission?". Turnes out I was right with the exeption that I underestimated the scale of stealth. Remember having the stealth episode in Jedi Outcast where you actually could kill all in the area for the exeption of one room almost in the end of the level? And even if you still decided to stealth it, it was pretty easy? Forget about that, you can't do it here. You'll have to stealth it very carefully, you can't just kill everyone and remain unspotted. Also, this episode of the mod brings new thing to gameplay - interactivity.
First off, the whole mission is divided into four levels. The first two was one level long time ago if I assume correctly, since the names of these maps suggest this, the team was talking about having some JA limitations and that some map had to be split in two, and that both of these maps if we take them alone already HUGE. These levels demand you to stealth through the Imperial City to a tram system that will take you to the Academy. It's ironic that the stealth level in JO was in prepare to be split two for consoles - the map in PC version is still the same and whole but has the name "cairn_dock1" and if I remember correctly in GameCube version it remained unsplit but had some modifications made to it in order for the consoles to handle it. This time even the PC version of JA can't handle the stealth level as it was intented. So, I actually wanted to write here about interactivity so here it goes. The first level do not offer it if I remember correctly but it presents you the scale of the maps which reminded me the scale of the maps in "Dark Forces II" (there is even one momend with the elevator taken directly from that game), they really was huge for me after JO and JA. Besides the scale you can feel here something that I would call a mix of original and prequel trilogies. The music and main desing gives you the feeling of original trilogy, but the skybox, some little locations remind you of the prequels while you are still on Empire controlled world. Same goes for the design of second level where interactivity comes to gameplay. In order to pass the bouncer you have to use a droid or the patriotic track found in one of the secret areas. Also, the funniest thing is the display of the music from the Windows XP media player in one of the displaying options. In the end, I'll have to say that the first two levles on Dvorn will give you a very good expansion of the stealth system.
The next level is the Academy. It's still presents you the interactivity and stealth aspect with addition of having to control a mouse droid - this aspect was in JO but remained undeveloped and was even explored in "Escape Yavin IV: The Lost Maps" mod. Also, this level for a very long time since the beginning of the Dvorn mission will give you the chance to wander around most of the map freely and even to read in the Academy Musem, if you will find the button of the fire drill that is the part of interactivity. You see, to get into one place you need the pass, but you can't get it directly, of course, you need to initiate a drill. You can initiate either attack drill, either fire drill. The Attack drill has time limit until reinforcements arrive and the time is... well I doubt that there is a chance of getting to the end of the level in this time limit when you play it first time, because there are high chances of getting stuck. The fire drill is unlimited in time, also the turrels with this drill do not activate and the officers in museum escape the academy too. So you win in this case because almost whole academy become free to explore. But to get this drill activate you'll have to go through some steps that I will not give here. Hovewer, it's worth it to get free roam, especially in the Museum that gives references to Episodes II-VI, and some games.
The final level of the mod, is the infamous forest level that was so hard to make by developers and is so hard to navigate through by the players thanks to the fog. It's still have tips for a navigation though. You just have to get to the first relay that's not so far from the start of the map and there you will have a map to look for the next ones (and each relay have a map, of course). Once you destroy all you can go to the extraction point and the mod ends.
Besides the overall gameplay and features that were described, I gave a promise to made an accent on the New Republic HQ hub. You see, each game in Jedi Knight series became more and more connected with the films. The "Dark Forces" had the OT feel and music that was achievable to that time. The "Dark Forces II" came out in the same year Special Editions were made and remade an approach to the game. It's like the Special Edition to the series even through it's the second game. The music was taken directly from the remastered in 1997 OT scores, the models became 3D, the force was added, the gameplay became more faster. Same remained to the "Mysteries of the Sith". Then, in "Jedi Outcast" the saber combat was improved thanks to the prequels. Same stayed in "Jedi Academy" but that time a Coruscant location was featured and it tried to resemble the planet from films while being different (it's not a bad thing, because the planet is one huge city). And if we take this mod as the next game than we will have an installment that has a planet from prequel films and locations that mixes designs of both trilogies with having references to installments of both canons.
Taking this mod as the game is not something done by the good subjective impression. While checking out the mod I tried to objectively evaluate the level design of this mod and came to conclusion that this design fells like from a full scaled game, rather from a mod. As far as I can understand the members of development team had some experience in professional approach or are very interested in this kind of thing.
P.S. Also, I couldn't resist and surf through the pk3 files and there are some spoilers to the next chapters so if you don't want to get them do not open the pack files. There is even some cut content that you can read below the spoiler.

Spoiler

There was an intention to have voiced briefings for every mission. The only one featured in the release is the first cutscene on Dreadnought level. The pack have files for Ord Mantell and Dvorn missions.

 

 

NumberWan likes this

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OK, first impressions based on the first mission:

 

1) Installation process is a bit tedious, why unzipping two more additional files when they are already in the right folder and could've been included within the main ZIP file ??

2) No widescreen (16:9, 16:10) support natively ??

3) The Russian language in the Star Wars universe ??

4) Difficulty settings are either too simple or too hard, there are no middle ground here.

 

Will write more when I have more.

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4 hours ago, Apprentice said:

OK, first impressions based on the first mission:

 

1) Installation process is a bit tedious, why unzipping two more additional files when they are already in the right folder and could've been included within the main ZIP file ??

2) No widescreen (16:9, 16:10) support natively ??

3) The Russian language in the Star Wars universe ??

4) Difficulty settings are either too simple or too hard, there are no middle ground here.

 

Will write more when I have more.

1) Packs are separated in case some people are unfamiliar with OpenJK, etc. I would have preferred making an exe file for installation, but it would also require time to make ?

2) Do you mean some icons and images are "deformed" as a result of current resolution? Most testers had no problem with widescreen.

3) We had Russian-speaking actors only. It was quite difficult to bring them all together even for one voice recording... It would be even harder to do with English speaking people, living in different countries. ?️

4) The Difficulty settings are coded in the JA engine. We didn't change this in DP, and for the most part the difficulty depends upon using the Force or lack of weapons in certain areas. 

I would say, that the intensity of battles isn't equal to the Jedi Academy pace. It's more or less happens with the direction towards Character's growth as a Jedi. Here Kyle Katarn is already a Jedi master, so we had to cut his position as a notable hero from Jedi Outcast. You could say, that he is restoring his strength after Ord Mantell.

@Numfast

Thanks for the review. Never expected someone to mention and notice so many things at once! It's indeed full of spoilers ?, but I'm glad most secrets were unveiled in such a manner. 

 

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I have a question, is finding secrets useful other than getting some HP and weapons ?

Is finding secrets award you with force points ?(I hated this idea in JK 1)

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On 1/26/2020 at 2:00 PM, Apprentice said:

3) The Russian language in the Star Wars universe ??

Uh... did you know there was an official russian voice acting for EVERY SW movie? More, that Star Wars is translated and dubbed in many, many languages? Please tell me: you're not that kind of mor... who think English is the only tongue in the world, or at least in video games, movies or in Star Wars?

 

Here, maybe you'd be less surprised in the future: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OCP-Y4u-beQ

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On 1/29/2020 at 11:01 AM, dg1995 said:

I have a question, is finding secrets useful other than getting some HP and weapons ?

Is finding secrets award you with force points ?(I hated this idea in JK 1)

Secrets aren't necessary for HP. At later stages either secret areas or subquests allow you to acquire weapons, which can't be obtained via other options in the level. At least one secret would open sort of "Shop" for you.
Some locations offer bacta tanks and references to Star Wars EU. Your Force powers grow as you progress through the story, it's not affected by secrets.
If we could, I would have added more items, weapons and other new things to JA, but that would require more of a coder, and I am more of an artist and designer ☺️

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On 1/26/2020 at 8:25 PM, NumberWan said:

1) Packs are separated in case some people are unfamiliar with OpenJK, etc. I would have preferred making an exe file for installation, but it would also require time to make ?

2) Do you mean some icons and images are "deformed" as a result of current resolution? Most testers had no problem with widescreen.

3) We had Russian-speaking actors only. It was quite difficult to bring them all together even for one voice recording... It would be even harder to do with English speaking people, living in different countries. ?️

1) I suggest that you do take the time to make it. You should make a all in one installer so people don't have to hassle with installing this mod. People generally don't want to hassle with anything and only experienced people know their way around.

2) I mean in the options menu. It only displays original 4:3 resolutions and not additional 16:9 and 16:10 resolutions but that could be an OpenJK thing, as I don't see them listed there as well. JK2MV does natively support widescreen resolutions and with console command, I can get them to work as well but that is not the way you should approach it. Maybe your own fork of the OpenJK SP section may give you the flexibility this needs.

3) True but on the other hand, Russian isn't part of the Star Wars lore as it goes with languages. For the most part it is traditional (British) English, blips and bleeps that make out the droid language and something that has been labelled as "Huttese". I would definitely change this so that it is more in line with the lore and bring English voice actors in. There are enough that can work from a distance and you can always have a Russian dub version available from the options menu. IIRC Jedi Academy can be displayed in French and German besides English, so there are options available.

 

On 1/30/2020 at 12:58 AM, lang_french said:

Uh... did you know there was an official russian voice acting for EVERY SW movie? More, that Star Wars is translated and dubbed in many, many languages? Please tell me: you're not that kind of mor... who think English is the only tongue in the world, or at least in video games, movies or in Star Wars?

 

Here, maybe you'd be less surprised in the future: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OCP-Y4u-beQ

Basicly you are missing the point and you are providing a summarized explanation yourself. What you are refering to, is called 'dubbing' and that is something entirely different to what I have layed out on the table. I know that many series and films are being dubbed in another language. Everything that you can see on German and French television that is of English or American origin, is always being dubbed and in my own country (when I'm not on Coruscant), there are plenty of films and series dubbed in the Dutch language. Most stuff you can see on Disney XD and such sort channels, for example.

What I have referred to in this particular matter, is that the Star Wars universe has been imagined with a certain amount of languages (British English, Droid and Huttese to name the biggest ones) and that 'suddenly' another already existing language makes it introduction, such as German, French, Spanish or in this case Russian. I believe that that is not respectful to that was already been established other then totally dubbed versions of the audio. Try to imagine when Peter Jackson decided to drop the Elvish language in the LOTR films and replaced it with contemporary languages, such as Russian ?? Somehow I do not think that the dubbed versions of those films went so far that Elvish, Dwarfish and the likes were being dubbed . . .

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@Apprentice

1) It was always my intention to make a proper installation .exe for the mod (like it was with the Demo). I know how to make one in fact, but even in this case I would have to spend time on making an installer instead of making the mod itself. Back those days we had a friend, who would spend time solely on the technical aspects such as making an installer for us ? Now our team consists of only a few people, contributing to the project, aside from the voice actors.

2) We had to stick to OpenJK, as it fixes a lot of JA bugs, which prevented DP from running (due to amount of details and the size of the areas). Making other options for the resolution is also the most welcome thing, but we'll need another team member for that, while everyone is busy with making models, textures, maps, etc. JA isn't exactly the best game for solving technical issues of it, so sometimes it's what made people change their mind about helping with making a new story for this game.

3) The reason here is purely the same as with finding people to help us finish the unfinished stuff. There aren't many to find. I had a lot of ideas both for the gameplay and for the visual aspects, for example. I would have preferred to change the game engine and make it visually appealing like Warzone by @UniqueOne, or adding some tasty elements like what Rend2 can do as mentioned by @Xycaleth . But usually people want to create their own project, because this gives a certain creative freedom. I was asked by various people to help to work on Star Wars mods for the Empire at war and other games, and I would always have to say – I'm sorry, but I can't (simply because I want a story of my own and I'm working on it). 

Finding a Voice actor in English is equally problematic if not even a harder task. Persuading our friends was a challenge (some agreed without reservations though), but that didn't go smooth at the start. Later on I met new people, who agreed to provide voices for the NPCs, which are quite many in DP (there were more than 50 pages of dialogs at the very start). Currently I rewrote part of them and asked new people to voice characters in a new manner. Some were added later and are completely new.

A few years ago, one User offered his help with voicing everything into English, but it didn't go anywhere, even though he gave me some examples of their work. @lang_french also offered his help with voicing all the parts in DP in French, but the reason why it's not currently possible is the same – too many voices and characters and some parts currently being updated.

A good idea and reasonable points, but there are simply no resources to fulfill them all.

 

 

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On 4/26/2020 at 1:04 PM, Apprentice said:

What I have referred to in this particular matter, is that the Star Wars universe has been imagined with a certain amount of languages (British English, Droid and Huttese to name the biggest ones) and that 'suddenly' another already existing language makes it introduction, such as German, French, Spanish or in this case Russian. I believe that that is not respectful to that was already been established other then totally dubbed versions of the audio. Try to imagine when Peter Jackson decided to drop the Elvish language in the LOTR films and replaced it with contemporary languages, such as Russian ?? Somehow I do not think that the dubbed versions of those films went so far that Elvish, Dwarfish and the likes were being dubbed . . .

This is nonsense... Elvish language, such as Huttese, Jawaese, Ewokese or Mandalorian are unreal languages, they don't exist in our world even if they had been created based on existing tongues. No invented language has been voice-acted in French or something, nor in LOTR neither in SW : Jabba speaks in Huttese, Elves in Elvish. We translate and dub the English language only. For some, we have subtitles to understand what they are saying but that's all.

So, again, there is no problem for DP to be in Russian, because all voices come frome human or near-human species which are speakin "Basic". And basic is just the word to say "human language, such as English and others". Moreover, as Numberwas explained, it is a hard task to find a cast in your own mother tongue, so in another one it becomes impossible. The project is more than 10 yo, I'm not sure the team is enjoyed by taking more years to find English speakers and waiting for their records, making the post-production etc.

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