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PostPosted: Fri Dec 11, 2009 12:31 am 
Ghost Buster
Ghost Buster
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Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2006 11:58 pm
Posts: 22630
Location: Tennessee, USA

This page was created for new editors of user-made sets intended for Ricochet Infinity. It provides how an author can know if there is a problem with a set that must be addressed before it can be released. The following are four topics that you, as an author should know:

Testing ProcessWhat happens after you submit the set
Status and NotificationIs there a problem with the set that needs fixing
New Submittal ProcessAn extra step prior to sharing the set
Ricochet AcademyLevel editor tutorials and other training materials for level designers

Testing Process

Once your set is submitted, it is placed in a “prerelease” status where it is tested prior to release to the public. If minor problems are found, the testers may go ahead and fix the problem so the set can be released. However, if there are more complex problems, or if there are several errors, then the author will be notified (See Status and Notification) and the set will be removed from the server. Once testing is completed, and no errors have been detected, the set is then released to the public.

Prerelease testing does not judge the quality of a set, but ensures that the set can be cleared and rings obtained. Each author's deliberate game design is checked to ensure the following rules are followed:

:arrow: There must at least 6 destructible bricks on each level. All bricks must be on-screen & visible to the player unless they are self-deleting bricks.
:arrow: The majority of testers must be able to get all 5 golden rings with one try.
:arrow: The majority of testers should be able to clear any level within 5 minutes.
:arrow: Forced bombs cannot be spawned less than 1 inch (in window mode) or 2 inches (in full screen mode) above the player ship, with the exception of giving a "No Ship Bonus" at the end of play.
:arrow: A stream of bombs must contain ample spacing for proper maneuvering of the player ship to avoid a forced loss of a life. Gaining lives when a life is lost is not an acceptable alternative to this rule.
:arrow: Each level should be able to be cleared in one try without having to, or being forced to, lose lives (ion spheres) or restart a level. Examples of this include: having to restart the level because the ball gets stuck with no way to finish the level, forcing the ship to explode during play (does not include the no ship bonus), etc.
:arrow: There should not be so many bricks, rings, balls, etc., in a level that the level’s play significantly slows down. A slight, temporary slowing down is accepted.
:arrow: Invisible bricks, barriers, etc., are not allowed.
:arrow: Copies from other level sets or duplicate levels are not allowed. Authors will be warned & those who continually submit copied levels will have their sets deleted without further testing or any message sent.
:arrow: Copyrighted or trademarked material (names, pictures, logos, etc.) is not allowed.
:arrow: Inappropriate language/pictures are not allowed and instructions must be in English.

Basically, testers make sure each level can be completed. They make sure there are no bricks hidden off the screen that can only be destroyed by certain power ups, but can also be missed to make the round impossible to finish. Spelling is usually fixed, but with the language differences it's sometimes impossible to know what was meant. A set is never outright rejected. A note is always sent to the creator so he/she has a chance to fix the set and resubmit it. (Please note the special circumstances above regarding copied levels.)

A Testers job is really dedicated to finding out if they can "break" a level. For example, if there are different ways to start a level (on the left side or right side, through a green or red teleporter, or trigger switches used to choose between a few options), the tester tries every option. Every avenue of a level's play is tested to ensure it is OK to release.

Status and Notification

If there are items that need editing in a set, the set is deleted from the game server and a message will be sent to the author via the game's download catalog. Be sure to pay attention to this message as it will only appear one time. This is accessed when you connect to the internet to download the latest catalog. Again, the message will only appear once, so be sure to note down the information relayed.

If the set is deemed bug-free, it is released to the public.

New Submittal Process

To submit a set, go to your first level and open up its level properties. At this point it is assumed that the creator has tested each level and made sure any “not allowed” items are NOT in the levels.

Where the “Note 1:” field is, type in http://www.RicochetInfinity.com. (The “R” and “I” are the only capital letters.)

Now you can submit the set the normal way, and as long as all the levels have been tested and the game states it is ready, it should be successfully submitted.

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Ricochet Academy

Ricochet Academy is a special place for those wishing to learn about level editing. This forum covers the basic concepts of editing, explaining many things from how to access the edit mode to menu definitions to basic editing and scripting to more complex scripting. It is intended to be a good resource for learning how to create level sets, along with extra tidbits on more advanced scripting options. Some of the topics included in the Academy are:

Awesome Things You May Not Know
Creating a Basic Level
Editing Menu
Keyboard Shortcuts in Editing
Levelsets Catalog Appearance: Name, Desc, Images
Tips On Making A Good Level

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