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Everything posted by James

  1. The general consensus that I've seen (e.g. on Discord) seems to be that we will definitely do one, but not immediately. End of 2018 or so seems to be the most common suggestion as far as getting the ball rolling.
  2. The holiday season is all about spending quality time with family and friends, but who says that need only apply to real life gatherings? In this competition, you will be *pairing up with another community member* to design your level as a team! Many amazing collaboratory levels have been produced over the years from community members honing each others' ideas as a team, and the experience of working with and learning from each other while making a great level adds a lot to an already fun experience. If you haven't designed a level with someone else before, this is the perfect opportunity to try it out! If you are having trouble finding a partner - or don't even know where to begin doing that - try posting a message here or posting a message to the CC Discord server. If that doesn't work, email me and I can try to set you up with others who are looking for a partner. (In the absolute worst case scenario I will team up with an odd-entrant-out to guarantee that nobody gets left out.) There will be no level restrictions for this competition: all types of levels are allowed and welcomed. The only "rule", if you will, is to have a strong sense of teamwork with your collab partner when designing your level. (i.e. if you and your partner both create some stuff independently and you lazily copy-paste it all into the same level to create a "collaboration", that effort will be judged much more harshly than a partnership who talked together about their ideas and refined each others' concepts while working together towards a common goal.) Bonus points will be awarded for: * Doing a little write-up alongside your entry describing who did what, how the level came to be, and what the process of collaborating was like for both of you * Giving your level some kind of connection to the holiday season (it doesn't have to be much) * Having some kind of creative/novel usage of random elements (anyone can stick a few blobs in a room for the sake of giving the player some generic monster to dodge, but can you add random elements to your level in a meaningful way such that they couldn't simply all be changed to other monsters or tiles without detracting from the level?) Please send your entries to jraanderson at msn dot com (or pm them to me here). I will send a reply confirming that I have received your entry. Notes: * I want to keep this open a bit longer than usual due to the logistics of collaborating with another person and how designing these levels will probably take more time than usual, so the preliminary deadline for this competition will be midnight (UTC-8) on the evening of January 31st. I will continue to accept late entries until I post the results, though late entries may be penalized. * You may submit as many levels as you like, but please only submit one level per partnership. (I'm looking at you, Tyler and Josh!) Please feel free to form new partnerships in order to submit more levels. * All rulesets are permissible: the level can be created for Lynx, MS (including MSCC-only and pgchip stuff if you want), or CC2 as long as it is solvable. * Entrants receive the normal prizes: the "You're Winner!" award, Chip Cup points, and the "Tool Box" award for first time entrants. * Please ask about unclear situations.
  3. I see no reason why we can't keep producing CC1 sets, however I do think that CCLP4 should be the end of the line for the traditional 149-level CCLPx format. Going forward, I feel like we would be better off producing smaller CC1 packs (maybe 75 levels?), more focused packs (like a "veteran pack" or another MS-only pack) or other kinds of new formats that would still allow us to publish official packs of CC1 levels without taking the focus off CC2 official packs, which should probably be the new standard going forward. My big thought in saying that is that a bunch of modern CC1 levels can be ported to CC2 (either directly or with minor modifications, and even with the contrasting boot drop rules) and I would rather put the best we have to offer into CC2 packs if we can, as CC2 is the future of Chip's Challenge; a high quality CC2 pack could do a lot to lure people into the community who would otherwise simply play the main pack, say "ehhh, it was okay I guess", and leave to play other games.
  4. James' official scores

    #148 (Gravity Well): 431 (b) Got it impromptu on stream at Jeffrey's request: https://clips.twitch.tv/FragileVictoriousBeanOptimizePrime Also re-did that illegal 181 on Frozen Waffle if anyone wants to see it (might be hard to make out): https://clips.twitch.tv/HonorableEmpathicNoodleNotLikeThis
  5. James' official scores

    CCLP1: #92 MS ( ): 837 (b+2, joint bold w/ Miika Toukola) 6,005,820 (b-10) / 138 b #92 Lynx ( :facepalm: ): 831 (b+1, joint bold w/ Miika Toukola)
  6. Stupid cooks.

    I was just going through old pictures and videos on my phone, and stumbled upon this gem from June 2015:
  7. Actually, in that AVI I missed three spring slides (one on the first ice/ball slide that would have been lost waiting for the second slide; one on the second slide that would have been lost to a deliberate [1] wait before the 4th fireball clone; one at the end of the lock section which would have been lost to a fireball at the end)
  8. tfw you finally qualify for the Doppleganger award but CC Zone was just upgraded to remove awards High-five, Bacorn! Well done for taking on the challenge of the third level as well. Looking forward to seeing all the solutions Thanks for running the competition, Miika.
  9. CCLP4 Scores

    819 to 825 is a six second improvement, but b+4 to b+9 is only a five second improvement. I've put 825 (b+10) down for now, but is there a chance you meant 824 (which would be b+9)?
  10. CCLP1 Scores

    Could you please send me a copy of the .dat in question as well as your MS and Lynx tws files? I don't suspect you of cheating, but scores in altered versions of sets have always been extremely frowned upon and I want to some due diligence work. I would like to make 100% sure that all of your solutions play fine in a non-edited version of the set, since it's possible that this mystery version of CC1 has additional subtle changes beyond the ice tiles.
  11. KeyboardWielder.dat

  12. Forged Iron Levelset

  13. I'm a bit surprised I won against the calibre of competition, but I'll take it I guess this means I should design more levels. Well done everybody on their creations in this unique format. The combination levels in the total set were nice to play and it's nice to have a detailed thought process regarding the results. Thank you for all the effort you put into these competitions
  14. Not_CCLP1.dat

    Ok, by now everybody knows about the CCLP1 staff's April Fools joke. I've uploaded the set as Not_CCLP1.dat both here and at the Yahoo! group. All of the levels were taken strictly from sets submitted for CCLP1 consideration by the staff. A breakdown: J.B. ~55 Tyler ~30 Rock ~20 Ben ~15 Dave ~15 Architect - 15 James - 1 (+ a collab) Paul - 0 (he was with us in spirit, though) Those last three numbers are exact, but the first few aren't. If the rest of the staff could quickly tally their totals and post them here, that would be great (I would do it but I'm not sure about the authorship of some of the levels and it would take considerably longer) How it was made: Tyler assembled various levels from staff sets, Rock and I narrowed the number down to 149 and created the difficulty curve. The whole process I would estimate took around 5 hours, and it was all done on March 31. In any case, I think the set is pretty decent as a whole. It has a decent difficulty curve, good level selection, and some appropriate level placements. Its main flaws are that the Cypher passwords are all invalid, that there a few bizarre level placements, and that its last level is too awesome to be put into words. If anybody has any thoughts or questions on the set, this is the place
  15. James' official scores

    #8 (The Fourth Dimension): 333 (b) #10 (Stuck in Emerald): 75 (b) 41 b
  16. Pointless CC Trivia Thread

    Levels that start with the letter D by level pack: CC1: 6 CCLP1: 6 CCLP2: 6 CCLP3: 6 CCLP4 :...............7 (CC2: 13)
  17. James' official scores

    #50 (Secret Underground Glider Cloner): 345 (b+2) 39 b
  18. bobdabaron's scores

    Wow, that's a lot of scores. Do you want any of your individual level times on the official scoreboards? It's always nice to have times of all kinds on there, even if they're not bold. Do you want to be known as "Tyler C." on the official scoreboards as well?
  19. (Your Wikipedia link is broken ) Yeah, that sounds about right. That would also explain the (4,32) and (5,32) results.
  20. It doesn't always, though. Time bonus is the only signed 16-bit integer on the score screen; level bonus, level score, and overall score are all 32-bit and allow up to 2.1b before rolling over to -2.1b. There are several things that lead me to believe the time limit is not stored as a signed 16-bit integer: * when you set a time limit or chip counter of 32768+, the last two digits still display properly (e.g. 32775 displays as [garbled][7][5]) * I was a bit ambiguous above; it is the time bonus points that overflow, which starts as early as time=3277. (since 32770 > 32767) It is not unique to time limits above 32768, and in fact there is no discontinuity between the time bonus points at time=32767 (-10) and time=32768 (0). * when you reset (4,32) or (5,32) - which store the initial time limit of the level - the new data on the bottom layer of (4,0) and (5,0) is consistent with an unsigned 16-bit integer going up to 65535 rather than a signed one that wraps to -32768. (At time=32767, (4,0) will contain 255 and (5,0) will contain 127. At time=32768, (4,0) will contain 0 and (5,0) will contain 128.)
  21. It sounds like you've got a working copy of MSCC now, but I've still finished the following write-up to document some of the pecularities of the behaviour anyways. (By the way, CCDesign will let you put time limits up to 65,535.) I've uploaded the game's internal digit graphic file (200.bmp) to my site as a reference: (click) As a reminder to those who perhaps aren't as familiar with MSCC, the game normally uses the green digits; the yellow digits are only used when the game is switched into black and white mode in the options menu (or when there are 15 seconds or less on the clock). The digits are numbered 0-23, starting from the bottom. As I mentioned earlier, the clock will display differently depending on whether the time is between 1000-2399, 2400-3499, 3500-32767, or 32768-65535. (In fact, the level number display and the chips required display will operate under these rules too, but those are far less relevant.) From 1000-2399 the timer is still somewhat normal and regular, since the game can still use that digit graphic file without problems. The game will display the ones' digit and the tens' digit normally, then it will naively assume the number can be displayed in three digits and it will attempt to find the appropriate "hundreds' digit" to display. As an example, the game will interpret 1300 as having a "hundreds' digit" of 13, and so it will look for the graphic representing "13" to display in the hundreds' place on the clock. Since digit #13 in the graphics file is the yellow 1, the game will display 1300 as [yellow 1][0][0]. After one second the clock will tick down to 1299 ([yellow 0][9][9]]) and it will tick all the way down to 0 as you would expect. Note 1: Normally, the tens' digit will always display its proper 0-9 regardless of what is going on with the hundreds' digit. However, there is one exception. When a time is between 1000-1009 - corresponding to a hundreds' digit of 10, which is an unlit green 7-segment "blank" display - the tens' digit will also turn into an unlit green 7-segment display. (e.g. 1005 is displayed as [blank][blank][5] instead of [blank][0][5] as you would expect.) This does not occur with the unlit yellow 7-segment display (from 2100-2109) nor does it occur at any other multiple of 1000. The blank tens' digit seems to only occur between 1000-1009. Note 2: it looks like the game handles turning the colour off by simply adding 12 to every digit internally, since that's the distance between a green digit and its corresponding yellow digit on the digit graphics file. (So when you select SPECIAL in CC1 and turn the colour off, the 999 time limit turns yellow because the game is actually now thinking [21][21][21], and the 21st digit in the digit graphics file is the yellow 9.) A consequence of this design choice is that the colour time display and the black and white time display will actually become "desynchronized" once the game can no longer use the digit graphics file, since the +12 to the "hundreds' digit" no longer means anything after that point. (This occurs at time limits of 1200+, which correspond to the game attempting to display 2400+ in black and white.) From 2400-3499 the timer starts to freak out a bit. 23 is the last digit in the graphics file, and beyond that the game starts inventing new graphics every 100 seconds in an attempt to display *something* in the hundreds' digit spot, and...well, I don't even know what the game is doing at this point. It looks like the game is still trying to read the graphics digit file, but it has no idea how; sometimes it will display garbled and unintelligible mash-ups of multiple digits, and sometimes it will display a random section of the digit graphic that is usually horizontally off-centre and without any vertical alignment to a specific digit. However, this behaviour is still consistent (with a few exceptions); if you become familiar with the new "digits", you can still read the clock and know exactly how much time is left. Note 3a: The "25 digit" isn't even a digit at all, it's just a chameleon that takes on the appearance of whatever was last displayed as the hundreds' digit. (If you beat a level with 300 seconds left on the clock and the next level has a 25xx time limit, that time will display as 3xx until it ticks down to 24xx. If you play the level for a while and restart with 2100 seconds left, the time will now display as [21 digit]xx until it ticks down to 24xx, and so on.) This behaviour reminds me a lot of the <combination>/overlay buffer tile in the game itself, which acts like a wall but appears like whatever transparent tile combination the game last had to draw. (Play EvanD1.dat level 125 or pi-rejects.dat level 2 in MSCC to see how that works in practice if you haven't seen it.) Since the <combination> tile isn't meant to be an actual "tile" for placement in levels but is actually used internally by the game to draw things correctly, it's possible that the "25 digit" serves a similar purpose. However, it's also possible that I'm reading *way* too much into it and that the "25 digit" is simply nothing at all and so the game just doesn't even update the visual displays. (Or maybe it does exist in an abstract sense, but it's undrawable? I don't know.) Note 3b: If you open CHIPS.exe to a level with a 25xx time limit - so there is no "previous hundreds' digit" - the "25 digit" will simply display as the green empty 7-segment display, which seems to suggest that this is its initial state. However, if you drag another window - or an in-game dialog box like Best Times, Go To..., Level Complete, etc. - over top of a "25 digit", the obscured portion of the "25 digit" will be pitch-black when you move the window away. This effect will stay on the screen until the next non-25xx time limit is displayed. (It's worth nothing that you actually do need to drag it across to create the effect. For example, if the Go To... menu pops up over top of the time display, the effect will not occur. However, if you drag that window away and then drag it right back over top of the display, the effect will now occur. You can also trigger this effect by beating a level immediately before one with a 25xx time limit, and making sure the score window is over top of the time display as you hit the "Onwards!" button.) Note 3c: It appears that the level number, time limit, and chip counter displays all handle 25 digits independently of each other. (e.g. If you're playing level 1250 with time limit --- and a chips remaining of 350, and switch to level 2500 with time limit 2500 and chips remaining 2500, the displays will read 1200/-00/300. "25 digits" don't transfer across displays.) Notes 3b and 3c seem to strongly support the idea that the game doesn't update the displays at all rather than the "25 digit" being some sort of <combination>-type thing. (Though that idea was much cooler.) Note 4: 30xx and 34xx appear to be highly volatile; they are different every time you open the game. They can even change during the course of a level (!) if you turn the colour off and on again. (You're far more likely to see a change if you swap the sound effects off and on again as well as the colour. I have no idea why any of this stuff happens.) From 3500-32767 the game stops coming up with new "graphics" every 100 seconds and instead just repeats the same hundreds' digit for this entire range. (It looks just like the one for 31xx, just horizontally shifted by a tiny bit.) The timer is still functional in this range, but you have no way of knowing exactly what the time is anymore while playing beyond "somewhere above 3500". From 32768-65535 the hundreds' digit is the same as the previous range but the tens' and ones' digits turn yellow (even if the colour is on) and the game no longer ticks down the timer; it's stuck at its original value forever and the level is effectively untimed. (Ditto for the chip counter. Level numbers above 32767 appear unplayable in MSCC in any form - though I need to do a little bit more research on this - but presumably they would also display in the same manner.) Despite the timer being completely broken, you will still get the correct amount of time bonus points when you solve the level. (However, time bonus points roll over at 32768 to -32767, and so the "correct amount" may not be what you think it is.) Coming soon: a video featuring all of these things as well as bonus material which I discovered during the course of investigating this stuff (three Chips stacked on top of each other; a timed level which is solvable at any time you wish, but on which it is impossible to achieve any level or time bonus points at all; experimentation with how MSCC hates levels numbered 10000+.)