Help with tapes please?

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soylent_cow
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Help with tapes please?

Post by soylent_cow »

I am trying to figure out how I can share a level with a tape or tapes that people can watch. Or, alternatively, how I can play a tape someone shared. I tried following instructions for inserting a solution tape, and nothing is happening, like

Code: Select all

:ist
Does it matter that I have

Code: Select all

s
bound to down? I figured out I can replay every record in the table of records, that's super-cool feature, but as a sharing technique seems pretty roundabout. I was kind of expecting I can just play a tape from the main menu, am I missing something?

PS: Oh and is there a way to make a tape of not beating the level?
ncrecc
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Re: Help with tapes please?

Post by ncrecc »

just to clarify, :ist is specifically to insert the solution tape that the levelset author included for the current level; if there is none it will say "no solution tape for this level!", and if there is one then the tape display on the bottom-right will update to reflect the date & length of the newly inserted tape. then you can click the "play" button ► to play it. i have down bound to S and it doesn't affect :ist.

(also, tapes that don't get to the end are possible. any tape that dies or exits to the menu will still be viewable until you play the level again yourself, in which case it will be overwritten as you start recording a new tape.)

as for how to play arbitrary tape files... i dunno. i've never tried it, and dragging-and-dropping a tape file onto the RnD window doesn't seem to work. :? hopefully holger can clear this up
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Holger
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Re: Help with tapes please?

Post by Holger »

Sorry, soylent_cow, for having some trouble with tapes in R'n'D! Seems I have to improve things here and there! :-)

ncrecc has already answered some of your questions -- thanks a lot for this (as I was a few days "away from keyboard" and couldn't answer questions here during that time).

A few more comments on this: You can save your current tape at any time! Just click the "eject" button, which will either tell you that the tape has been saved (if there was no tape for that level so far) or will ask you if you want to replace your already existing tape for this level (if you have saved one before) with the currently loaded or recorded tape. Pressing "eject" again will reload the tape (if the tape recorder is empty). Unfortunately, only one single tape can be saved for each level, so you have to decide if you want to keep an existing tape or save the current one.

Typing ":ist" (as a shortcut for the also working ":insert-solution-tape" cheat code, which must be typed "blindly" in the main menu and which does not interfere with key bindings for playing the game) loads an optional solution tape provided by the level set author (that is normally not displayed, to not give away hints on how to solve that level to easily ;-) ).

Sharing (and using) a tape for an existing level (of an existing level set) is currently not that easy, and not that comfortable. Just loading it into R'n'D by drag'n'drop would be cool, but is currently not supported. (This is a cool feature idea for future versions of R'n'D!)

Therefore, currently, you have to manually copy it to your personal "tapes" folder, into the correct sub-folder with the same name of the level set in question (like "tapes/emc_amiga_mine_1/003.tape" for the tape for level 3 of the level set "emc_amiga_mine_1").

If would be cool to have something like those ".sp" files for Supaplex (which can contain a level together with a tape in one single file), and to be able to drag'n'drop it into R'n'D to load and replay it! :)
filbo
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Re: Help with tapes please?

Post by filbo »

Holger wrote:
Unfortunately, only one single tape can be saved for each level, so you have to decide if you want to keep an existing tape or save the current one. [...] manually copy it to your personal "tapes" folder [...] like "tapes/emc_amiga_mine_1/003.tape"
Notice that these things can be integrated. 'only one single tape' exists as far as the game UI and engine are concerned. YOU can go into the filesystem can rename / move / copy / etc.

So, for instance, my ~/.rocksndiamonds/tapes/... hierarchy has 24210 files named '???.tape' (where '?' are all digits), and 1049 named '???.tape.orig', for cases where I decided some particular solution was worth saving, but then I played a 'better' one to be my 'official solution' for that level. And then, some 20-30 additional tapes with names like, for instance:

rnd_niko_boehm/025.tape.blue
rnd_niko_boehm/025.tape.green
rnd_niko_boehm/025.tape.red
rnd_niko_boehm/025.tape.yellow

rnd_richard_kleber/006.tape.blue
rnd_richard_kleber/006.tape.green
rnd_richard_kleber/006.tape.red
rnd_richard_kleber/006.tape.yellow

These files are from 2011 and 2014, so I don't 100% remember, but I'm pretty sure those were both levels where you have to make an initial choice of which door to go through, and you can't really get back to initial conditions; so I saved tapes of solving it in each direction.
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Holger
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Re: Help with tapes please?

Post by Holger »

Thanks, filbo, for this explanation!

And that's perfectly true (and worth mentioning from time to time): Even though R'n'D might only look for a certain tape file at some specific location, there is no reason not to make and keep as many copies of tape files as you like -- after all, this is only a computer with a file system, and it is YOUR computer, and R'n'D should not do strange things with your own files. :-)

To play those different (copies of) tapes for the same level in R'n'D, you indeed have to just copy them back from "001.level.mycopy" to "001.level" (maybe making a copy "001.level.orig" from the previous file "001.level" to keep it), and R'n'D will see the new (other) tape now.

That's also the reason I did not use the "recommended" application directories on Windows and Mac for R'n'D files, because they are well hidden on both systems by default (but instead use the not-so-nice locations in "Documents/Rocks'n'Diamonds", so you can easily find your own files for R'n'D). (On Linux, R'n'D files are stored in "~/.rocksndiamonds", which unfortunately is also hidden by default in most graphical file browsers, but at least is easily accessible on the command line.)

Android is another story here, as accessing app files gets harder and harder with each new Android version (thanks, Google :( ). But at least adding new level sets on Android will be much easier with the next R'n'D version, which will then support "Open with ..." on downloaded zip files, to support just choosing the R'n'D app to open and install zip files with new level sets.
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