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Author Topic: 99d FAQ (Got a question? See if it's here first.)  (Read 2707 times)
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Phoenix
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« on: 2003-08-14, 04:14 »

This is the 99d "FAQ".  While some questions may not be frequent, they might be important. Anything we've missed putting in the readme will be here, and anything that becomes a common concern might be added later.  We encourage you to read the Generations manual, readme.doc, READTHISFIRST.txt, and troubleshooting.txt before consulting this FAQ.

So far, here goes.  Questions are arranged in no particular order.

Why do I keep getting kicked with "invalid pk3 files" from the server?

Why does Gen do some really strange stuff when I connect to a server, but not when I play a local game?


Do you have any other .pk3 files in your generations folder?

beta099a-pak0.pk3
beta099a-vm.pk3
pak1_99b_update.pk3

These files should NOT be in your Generations folder at all.  They are from the older 99b version of Gen, and they can and will cause problems, especially "unpure client" kicks from servers.  Please remove them, then try again.  Also, you MUST have Generations version 99c installed BEFORE installing Generations version 99d.  Generations version 99d is an UPDATE to 99c.  See if you are missing the file pak0_genv99c.pk3 from your generations folder.  If so, you need to download and install Generations 99c.  Then reinstall 99d and try again.

I keep getting kicked with the message "This server is running an older version of Generations." OR "I keep getting kicked with the message "Client/Server game mismatch: generations/baseq3"[/i]

The first message may occur if you are connecting to a server running Generations 99c or before.  The second message may occur if you are connecting to a server running a mod other than Generations.  In either case, try another server.


I'd like to make some custom binds to be used for each different class so I can get to my favorite weapons easier.  Is there any way I can do that?[/i]

Absolutely!  Generations is very config friendly when it comes to per-class keybindings.  Take a look at these files:

earth.cfg
doom.cfg
slipgate.cfg
strogg.cfg
arena.cfg

You can put any custom key bindings in there.  Look at the "1" through "0" and "g" keys as indications of what number corresponds to what weapon, and bind accordingly.  Please note that the "flipweapon" command is specific to the DOOM WARRIORS class only.  Trying to use it for a different class will result in the game complaining to you about it.  Otherwise, tweak away!

Every time I change classes I'm back to using either Sarge, Doom, Ranger, Grunt, or Visor, even though I changed models.  What gives?[/i]

If you're having problems with models "remembering" on class changes check the files mentioned in the previous question.  If there are any "model" statements in there remove them.  These files execute every time you become the appropriate class, and having any "model" statements in them WILL BREAK model memory since it is setting THAT model every time you changed class.  If you fresh installed Gen 99c it should be no problem, but if you copied over old configs from 99b or 99a it WILL be a problem, so double check that.


How come when I try to change models in a Team Deathmatch or CTF game nothing happens, but in FFA or 1vs1 it works fine?

How come when I set my team model my head stays the same as the old model?

How come I can't change headmodels in teamplay?
[/i]

Quake 3 uses FOUR variables to set models.  They are:

model
headmodel
team_model
team_headmodel

In Team Deathmatch or CTF the "team_model" and "team_headmodel" variables are read, NOT the "model" and "headmodel" variables.  Also, in teamplay (due to a Team Arena leftover gib in the Q3 code) your team_headmodel will not switch when you change the team_model variable.  Normal Quake 3 does this as well.  Our solution is to use this command:

/fmodel [model/skin]

What is "fmodel"?  It's mainly just a convenience command we added.  This will set ALL FOUR model variables to the same thing, so regardless if you're in teamplay or FFA it will ALWAYS set your model and head to what you specefy.  If you want to use a different headmodel you'll have to assign that manually of course.  Gen DOES have the capacity to remember separate team models, so if you want to use a different model for Teamplay for a specific class than you do for FFA you'll have to manually set the variables as in normal Q3 instead of using "fmodel".  Also note that headmodels do NOT remember independantly of your body.  If you were Doom/red and used the Biker/default headmodel, the next time you become a Doom Warrior you'll have Doom/red for your body and Doom/red for your head again.

That sounds complicated.  Can't I just use the menu?[/i]

Absolutely.  The Generations Arena menu for 99d is the recommended method for changing models and skins.  Note that in TEAMPLAY you will see your TEAM model.  If you are in the main setup menu or are spectating the model skins will default to RED, but the proper team color will display once you join a team.  Please note that headmodels must still be set manually at this time.

How come the guy attacking me shows a circle and a slash over his face?[/i]

Any time someone changes class, naturally their model changes too.  It has to.  In order to prevent the game from "hitching", or stuttering whenever someone does this it defers the loading of their model to a safe time.  Generations will wait until you either die or bring up the scoreboard before loading player models.  In the mean time, you will see the default model for the particular class running around.  In spectator mode models will load instantly unless you are "following" another player.

How come I keep seeing "This model cannot be used for this class... forcing default"?[/i]

This is Gen's way to prevent the wrong model being shown on the wrong class.  Let's say you're a Doom Warrior, and you type the following:

/fmodel biker/cadavre

Biker is one of the Earth Soldiers, as stated in the Generations Manual, so he can't be used if you're a Doom Warrior.  This message informs you that you tried to pick a model that does not work for the class you belong to.  It will load the default model for the time being until you select a model that DOES work for that class.  

I keep trying to change to my favorite model, but it's saying "Cannot find animation2.cfg file for model.  Forcing default."  What does this mean?[/i]

Each model in Generations has a file associated with it called "animation2.cfg".  In future releases of Generations it will also feature a list of new animation stances so that our combatants can hold their pistols out properly, lob grenades, heft BFG's in a more realistic manner, carry TWO gatling guns (yes, TWO) at the same time from third person view, swing axes with force, slash with knives, and throw punches like they mean it.  When this is complete we'll release a SDK for modelers to make their favorite models compatible with whichever class in Generations they like, or build future models with the new stances in mind.  Right now it just controls which class the model belongs to.  While someone could add an animation2.cfg to a third party model and get it to work we do not encourage nor do we support third-party model conversions to work with this system at present.

Can I use my favorite skins with Gen?[/i]

Yes!  For the existing models available in Generations we FULLY support skins.

Why do the maps in Gen look kind of dull compared to normal Q3?[/i]

This was a requirement under 99c and before to have the following variable set:

r_mapoverbrightbits 0

This was mainly to correct a blinding issue with the Doom invulnerability and is no longer required.  You can return Generations to normal Quake 3 lighting with the following command:

/r_mapoverbrightbits 1

We recommend this setting.  You will need to restart Generations in order for this change to take effect.  You will almost certainly need to lower your gamma correction slightly afterwards.

Doom's invulnerability blinds me!  It turns the entire screen white, so white I can't see ANYTHING!  What should I do?[/i]

This should be corrected in version 99d.  You can still check your r_overbrightbits setting.  If 0, try setting to 1, or vice-versa.  You probably just need to lower your gamma correction.

That didn't help![/i]

Try setting this value HIGHER by a number:

r_mapoverbrightbits

It will wash out the maps a tad, but it should allow you to see with the invulnerability.  If you've tried all this and are still having serious problems, talk to us in #wirehead on irc.enterthegame.com and we'll do our best to help you in person.

Rocket explosions and other dynamic lights are going crazy colors on me!  What's going on?[/i]

Open the console and type this:

/r_finish "1"

Can I switch handedness for the Strogg Troopers?[/i]

No.  We only support the "right-handed" position at present.  In a future release we may add a centered and left-handed option, however it will probably only affect where the damage originates from on the server - not where the gun is positioned.  Unless we find out otherwise, as far as we know Quake 3 does not allow models to be "mirrored" the way Quake 2 did, so a left-handed position for the models will not work.

I'm trying to load a map but it's lagging forever![/i]

If you're having trouble getting stuck at "awaiting snapshot" for excessive periods of time try the following.

open your q3config.cfg file, and look for this line:

seta r_ext_compressed_textures

If 0, set to 1.  Reload Generations.  You should no longer get stuck at "awaiting snapshot".  If you still experience slow load times try to make sure nothing else is running in the background that might be pulling resources away from your game.  Please note that Generations uses a LOT of high definition models and textures, so they will take a bit longer to load than normal Quake 3 will.

Gen looks great, but my framerate is in the cellar.  Can you help?[/i]

While we want people to play Gen with full-tilt eyecandy whenever possible, we do realize that computers are not all-powerful and are subject to many limitations, even with the fastest video cards and processors.  If you are experiencing slow framerates in Generations, try the following:

Reduce FSAA and/or Anisotropic Filtering, expecially at ultra-high resolutions like 1280x1024.

Try lowering your resolution to 1024x768, or 800x600.  If that helps, start with a stable, fast resolution that you're happy with and start adding options to that.

Try setting cg_dlightlevel to a lower number.  Plasma and blaster bolts can load the scene with a LOT of dynamic lights, and with FSAA or Anisotropic settings turned up at high res it WILL cause slowdowns even on a Geforce 4 ti4600.  If you're only experiencing slowdowns with dynamic lights in the scene, this will help greatly, either that or reducing FSAA or Anisotropic.

Try setting r_roundimagesdown to "1".  Setting it to "0" WILL give sharper textures, but will result in longer load times and increased video load.  "1" is default in Q3, "0" is only recommended for VERY fast machines with the latest graphics accelerators.

Try setting r_detailtextures to "0".  Some maps make extensive use of detail textures to add fine precision to their appearance, but at a tremendous cost to speed.  Setting this to 0 will help speed things up.

Try reducing your color depth, or bitdepth.  These are best set using the menu system, along with resolution.

If r_picmip is "0" try setting it to "1".

Gen runs fast, but looks kind of blurry.  I've got a REALLY fast rig and I want to see everything as sharp and groovy as possible.  What can I do?[/i]

We've included some of the same settings in the documentation with Gen as above, but in reverse.  If you've got an Athlon XP2100+ with a GFti4600 or Radeon 9700 or better graphics card, we recommend trying the following, in the following order, to maximize the stunning visual beauty that is in Generations Arena:

Go to the Setup menu, and choose "system".  Set that to "High Quality".

Set r_picmip to 0.

Set r_roundimagesdown to 0.

Set cg_dlightlevel to 2 or 3 (depending if you like the secondary missile lights)

Set cg_dlighttype to 0 or 1, to preference.

set cg_dlightshaft to 1, or 2 for more energetic lights on the Slipgate Thunderbolt's effects!

set cg_dlightflame to 1 or 2 to let the fireballs light things up with the Napalm Launcher!

Experiment with Anisotropic filtering and FSAA to taste, but be sure to try this out incrementally.  If the Doom plasma rifle is causing your screen to lag to 20 fps, you need to back off a bit somewhere.

Are there any other optimizations I can use to smooth Generations out a bit?[/i]

Yes.  By default, Quake 3 sets com_maxfps to 85.  It is best to match this setting as closely as you can with your monitor's refresh rate.  100Hz refresh with com_maxfps 100 (modem users:  see a cautionary note below) will give a nice smooth movement to the world, but might result in some visual tearing, and it can be smoothed some more.  Try these settings:

com_maxfps 100 (or your preference)
r_swapinterval 1
m_filter 1

r_swapinterval may induce some video slowdown in complex scenes with extremely high detail settings, but otherwise will smooth the world's movement out a LOT.  m_filter smooths the mouse input to make it less jittery.  Put together this makes things in Gen move slick as glass as long as your framerate keeps up.

I'm on a modem, and I'm experiencing excessive lag in Gen.  I KNOW my server browser told me I ping 200 to this server, but it's up in the 400's for some reason.  Is there anything I can do to help this?[/i]

Yes and no.  Try the following settings:

com_maxfps 60
rate 3500

com_maxfps DOES have some control over how many data packets get sent over the net for some reason.  If you're getting a 200 FPS framerate in Q3 and you're on a CABLE modem it will add 50 or more to your ping.  On a modem it will practically kill your connection.  Experiment with this until you reach a happy medium.  Same with the rate command.  Both of these will make the game chop a bit more when set low, but will keep the dreaded "Connection interrupted" message from rearing it's ugly head as often.  Sometimes you just can't get past the limitations of the modem, however.  We've taken every step we can to make Generations as modem-friendly as possible and to keep the game enjoyable for everyone, regardless of connection.  I played on a modem for years myself, so don't worry, we don't leave the 56k'ers behind in our design plans.

Does Generations work with Punkbuster?[/i]

Yes, Generations should have no compatibility issues with Punkbuster.

I don't see the Punkbuster button in Generations.  How do I enable punkbuster?[/i]

Bring down the console, and type the following:

/pb_cl_enable

This will work even during mid-connect to a server, so if you're trying to connect and getting a "punkbuster required" message just hit ~ and type that in, and you can get your game on.

How do I DISABLE punkbuster?[/i]

/pb_cl_disable

This will take effect the next time you load Generations, but not before then.  Bear in mind that you do not NEED to disable the punkbuster client to connect to a server that is not running punkbuster.  Modem users might want to disable it before connecting to non-PB servers so the occasional "security validation" doesn't result in a lag frag for someone else...

I keep getting "INVALID CD_KEY.  MISSING CD_KEY?"  messages.  Is that a Punkbuster issue?  Is that a Generations issue?[/i]

No.  This is a CD key issue with communicating to Id's master server.  Generations does not require the use of a CD key to play the mod(we assume you own a legal copy of Quake 3, and if you don't then shame on you).  However, if the server admin has set sv_strictauth to "1" the server that you are connecting to requires your computer to talk to Id's master server to make sure you're not using a banned or invalid CD key.  This is up to the server admin, we neither encourage nor discourage this requirement.  Like anything, even Id's computers get squirrely once in a while, so be patient and keep trying.

I'm on a modem, and the lightning guns and flamethrower are rather hard to use and look kind of weird when I run forward.  Are there any settings to help make them more effective?[/i]

Yes.  Try the following settings:

cg_nopredictlightning 1
cg_nopredictshaft 1
cg_nopredictflame 1

These control the Q3 lightning gun, Q1 shaft, and Earth flamer thrower, in order.  As you may or may not know Quake 3 "predicts" your movement so that on your system you're movements are actually slightly ahead of where the server says you are at the time.  It takes time to update that movement.  Setting any of these to 1 will visibly "disconnect" the stream from your gun's muzzle flash in order to render from the point the server says you are located at the time.  The visible effect will match the exact path the damage is taking place over.  This may look a bit odd, but once you get used to it you can employ it with much more effective results.  It will never make up for having a high ping, but it will help balance things out a bit.

Does Generations feature "unlagged", or will it in the future?[/i]

Generations does not feature "unlagged".  The reasons are twofold.  First, Generations has a LOT of projectile-based weaponry that cannot be predicted as such.  This disparity between "instant hitscan" and "laggy rockets" breaks gameplay consistancy.  It also tends to penalize low pingers worse than high pingers since someone with high ping can in a sense "see into the future" by popping out from behind a wall, clicking "fire" and popping back with enough time to see someone else, target them, and duck out of the way.  To the low pinger he'd be "dragged back" to the spot he was at when the high pinger's gun went off.  This is a kind of reverse-lag that we feel is not a feature we desire to see in Generations and robs people of any benefits of a good connection they paid good money to get.  Second, it would be extremely complex to integrate this system into the already complex Generations mod.

Generations MAY in the future include an option, based upon Unlagged's code, to artificially INCREASE one's ping.  Why would anyone want to do this?  Two reasons.  The first is that on a local game high ping players can practice "as they'd play on the net".  This would be a very nice feature to have.  Second, low pingers could voluntarily set their ping more in line with other players to make a more even match if they desire.  I run my own server, and I ping 6 there.  That kind of makes it unfair to anyone else who plays.  Third, server admins could in theory force an artificial ping onto extremely low ping players.  For example, say a server admin wants 200 to be the "minimum ping" and run his "HPBland modem-friendly Gen server".  Someone with 30 ping would have 170 added to his latency.  If his ping jumped to 50, it would add 150.  This would be a dynamic system.  Anyone with ping 200 or higher would not suffer any penalty.  While the ideal situation is for nobody to ever have any latency whatsoever, that is a pipe-dream and even ultra-low latency networks are years away.  In the mean time this could allow an admin to custom tailor their server and make the gameplay consistant for the majority of their target audience and balance the ping factor at a reasonable level with the tools at hand.

Bear in mind this is NOT set in stone as a definite feature for a future release of Generations, but it is something we might do if we have time and can make it work, if it's even possible.  We have more pressing matters to take care of in the mean time.


This ends the current Generations v99d FAQ.  If we can think of anything else we'll add it as we go.
« Last Edit: 2004-08-05, 07:40 by Phoenix » Logged


I fly into the night, on wings of fire burning bright...
Phoenix
Bird of Fire
 

Team Member
Elite (7.5k+)
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Posts: 8583

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« Reply #1 on: 2004-08-08, 09:59 »

Well the .99d era is over, so I'm unstickying this topic.  The FAQ has been added to the manual and updated slightly, so be sure to check that out.  We'll create a new FAQ on this board for when we get any questions/concerns during 99e's public testing phase we feel are of note and should be kept available for mass viewing.
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