Cat-Life GS is a singleplayer modification for Half-Life 1 that will follow the story of a scientist's pet project, XFC-71... a cat named Newton.

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With the cat-code now at least functional, and the beta approaching... here is a few details regarding the new code, current bugs, and a short video for your viewing pleasure.

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My part in Cat-Life has always been fairly administrative. I run the website and kept the project around until BiGToM was ready to assemble his team. After that, I write news posts, maintain the Cat-Life page and ModDB profiles, and offer suggestions/any other aid that I need to provide.

However, with the lack of a full-time coder and the likelihood that the Open Beta would be basically a map pack with some new sounds and such details, I have also assumed the role of temporary coder.

I re-installed my old Visual Studio 6 for the first time in years and found out just how rusty my C++ has become. Even so, I tracked down a few tutorials and toyed with the code, creating some cheap and ugly hacks to help give the game a better change to game play.

Even so, there is more work to be done and we really need a good coder to clean up my ugly mess. You see, I've done all that I can without taking more time to refresh my C++ and study the GoldSource code to truly understand the details. I have some 20 or so projects around the BWL site that I have put off for a few nights of coding, and even then I have used more time than I would have preferred.

I am sending my current work to BiGToM. The code features wall jumping, wall climbing (modified wall jumps), 2 attacks, a dash button with short stamina bar, simple dark vision, and spawn with long-jump.

The attacks are weaker. The cat makes 50% less noise for monsters to hear. Some monsters have been changed to see the player as less of a threat and the houndeyes are now predators and will attack headcrabs and the cat alike.

Unfortunately, there are known bugs. Sometimes, the attacks can loop unexpectedly making them very potent in that instant. Sometimes hit detection on dead bodies is a little off. The Enhanced IR Night Vision Goggle idea I planned to use for DarkVision wasn't very good. I considered using it for a "catnip" enhanced vision mode pick-up, but that didn't really work either, so that feature was disabled.

DarkVision works nicely, but can sometimes stop the player briefly after level change. Wall climbing works wonderfully, but is also limitless. It's not really a bug, but as long as you are on a wall, you can go up as high on that wall as you like. We plan to use clip brushes to limit players in-game.

Overall, playing this new code has been a lot of fun even with the bugs. Players will need a replacement set of dll's in order to play the original Half-Life as the hull changes in Cat-Life require custom hulls. Basically, Cat-Life works with one set of dlls and playing regular Half-Life with the cat code will require a replacement set of dlls. I plan to offer the over-writing dlls as a separate download.

In-game, much of the game play will have changed. You will need to run for your life more often then stand and fight. The pace is considerably faster and more hectic, yet a fairly experienced player will be able to really play around and make use of the new code for some fun battles.

Here is a short video for your viewing pleasure.

Comments
Centaur1um
Centaur1um

I liked that video.

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NullSoldier
NullSoldier

I agree, it would be fun to see what the Cat-life experience of HL1 would feel like. :)

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cheesemoo0
cheesemoo0

Nice work for not really being a coder.

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m82sniper
m82sniper

Heh, I like how the grunts are using grenades to kill a cat. :D

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SysOp.
SysOp.

Quick tips:

-Change the sounds (A MUST DO)
-Add new maps. If you don't have maps, design a few IN PAPER and put someone to work.
-HL's SP campaing isn't going to work for several reasons. First one: would be a pain in the *** slash impossible killing flying stuff.
-It's been like 7 years of development. I need to ask: what's going on? If you guys are planning to release this, take a big cup of coffee, learn what it takes and start to work, otherwise, cancel the project and save effort and time. Sometimes you just can't find the requiered people, I know, but seeking people for 7 years?

Thanks for the credits.

(btw, I could have said "oh, cool mod" but I think that isn't going to help you at all)

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pvt.Johnson
pvt.Johnson

They have maps and new content, they are just showing what it would be LIKE to have the cat instead of gordon in the half life campaign. Correct?
What sounds would they change really? maybe some new cat noises or something i guess.

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The_Wildcat Author
The_Wildcat

That's correct. And I'm also planning a secondary "bonus" download that will make it possible for players to play the original Half-Life using our cat code once Cat-Life is released. It won't be perfect, but its more for fun then anything and not an official part of the mod.

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SysOp.
SysOp.

Read my lips: HL campaign is not going to work. Player is going to get stuck.

I don't know, it's been 7 years. I expected more than a resized player a few HL-like maps. No hard feelings.

If there are maps done, they will need to be heavily modified to catch up the new features, otherwise, they wouldn't make any sense. Mapping should be done after basic code is done. Not otherwise.

I could spend 20 minutes writting about stuff that should be done but since no one is going to give a damn, I won't.

I really really really hope I'm wrong and all.

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The_Wildcat Author
The_Wildcat

I'll try to keep this short.

*The code DOES work. It has bugs... but it will do for the beta.

*I know of one place, on a lift near the end of the game where the player gets stuck if they move the wrong direction. I'm sure there will be others, but not many.

*The Beta IS on it's way, BiGToM uploaded it to an FTP for some of us to try.

*The HL campaign is a bonus download and NOT part of the mod. It uses a different set of dlls. The player hull is normal and only the view is lower. You can see 5 minutes of HL gameplay in that video.

*You can pick up regular weapons in the HL campaign download I'll offer. The only impasse I've found is the airlock at the beginning of the game. Barney won't let you pass because you can't pick up the HEV suit [the player spawns with it]. I just noclip through and continue. If you're want a REAL challenge, try to play the game with just the crowbar/Cat Claws.

*7 years is a long time. But it was on hold most of that time. Everything we have now has been made since 2007. Stop repeating this bit or GTFO.

*Your comments sound incredibly negative and condescending, and I'm tired of reading them. Try actually reading what everyone else is trying to tell you. You aren't being helpful. You aren't being curious. Stop looking down your nose at us and try reading a little. Check out the 5 videos we've posted, our news, our ModDB Profile, our site... and stop ignoring everyone else.

I take everything you have written to be snotty. There are comments here trying to explain these matters to you, yet you ignore them. I know some people, like the podcast 17 guys for instance, think you're amazing. Good for you.

But stop. I think I explained our bugs and our status well enough. Many side maps and new monsters are on hold for now. Yet, the game works & IS playable & fun. So, for the fans who have been following us for all these years, we WILL release the open beta and give them something to play.

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SysOp.
SysOp.

How can we expect progress when there's anyone to raise the bar?

If people hate me or love me they have reasons to do so, doesn't means I'll have to change my point of view. I could be wrong about the "you have no maps" but it's only because I've seen many many changes and many many info in lot of directions.

There's no reasons to be rude or say me "GTFO", I'm just saying. You are also ignoring comments. I've seen great ideas here (moddb users) and yet you paid no attention.

If I were you, I'd work on the art direction. I'd change models, change the hud, add a style. A Worms art-like style could fit perfectly. I'd work on the cat sounds as well. Same for other stuff...

My next comment will be "Great mod, I love the cat". It's easier.

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The_Wildcat Author
The_Wildcat

This is my point. You aren't raising the bar. You keep talking about what we CAN'T do. We've explicitly told you what we HAVE done. And we're still asking for help to improve.

I haven't ignored anyone. We simply aren't going to give our cat a chainsaw or grappling hook etc. Such ideas are interesting, but not in tune with the mod. It would be great to work them in on side-maps and secret areas, but that aspect is on hold for the beta.

Meanwhile, we've demonstrated that we did add a bite that adds health and can be used on carrion. BiGToM has been working on suggestions, right down to making the cat purr if the 'use' key is pressed in the air.

The mod IS NOT perfect, but it works. We've had to toy with a lot of tricks to make them work and there WILL BE bugs. But this is a beta and we WANT to know where the bugs are and we want help troubleshooting.

With that said, let me again say that I have perceived YOU as rude. I realize I can be oversensitive. But my point is that your "skills" and me giving you a credit doesn't excuse comments like "Read my lips: HL campaign is not going to work" and "it's been 7 years. I expected more than a resized player a few HL-like maps."

I was patient with your initial comment. I waited for some of our ModDB followers to correct your mistakes, but you ignored them.

That being the case, I in my role cannot ignore what I think I see in your posts. How many people must tell you that we've changed the sounds? How many people must tell you that we've changed the maps?

Are we going to change the models and graphic design of the project? Not at this time. That would require considerably more time and resources and for now we want to let our followers play the game.

I'm sorry I was "rude" due to needed brevity [2000 char limit], but I feel fairly justified at this point. If you want to help, do so.

"My next comment will be "Great mod, I love the cat". It's easier."

Just drop the snotty attitude.

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The_Wildcat Author
The_Wildcat

Hmm... I had wanted to change "I'm sorry I was "rude" due to needed brevity [2000 char limit]" to "I'm sorry I was rude" but it's been more then 5 mins.

Anyway, having read some of your other posts I think some of this may actually be a language barrier issue of sorts. I certainly hope that is the case.

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SysOp.
SysOp.

Okay, I'm sorry too and I do recognize I acted childish. I also recognize the effort you guys are doing.

I could help you designing and coding the HUD, that way I'll add my two cents. Only if you feel like it's ok for the project.

Regards!

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The_Wildcat Author
The_Wildcat

Sounds interesting, I'll let BiGToM know.

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Xylemon
Xylemon

I guess him explaining that he's using Half Life as an example was too hard for you to understand

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Tallon_hunteR
Tallon_hunteR

"that cat is dynamyte!!!"

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VovaS500
VovaS500

Very nice. :)
Good work!

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hive_tyrant
hive_tyrant

u sshould like give the cat super powers when in zen

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daypitoum
daypitoum

Very nice !
Having a default FOV at 130-140 would also add to the fun, i think it would be cool (not saying I know how do cats see the world :D )

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JPC
JPC

Soldiers chasing the cat, I wonder what he stole. Looks good.

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SneakySoft
SneakySoft

I just replayed half-life last weekend. It's still my favorite game ever made. Love it you are working with there levels and your own gameplay ;)

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Mazzma
Mazzma

when you hit the use button and your not looking at a usable item you should meow :3

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Radu_IceMan Creator
Radu_IceMan

If you want to see what happened in the past years watch this video.

VIDEO -- > Youtube.com <-- VIDEO

*WARNING* NOSTALGIA DETECTED!

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23-down
23-down

Great video.. I really hope you will finally find your coders after this video. :)

You definitely need one. The code seems great so far but seeing a matrix cat climbing walls is strange or soldiers attacking a cat sounds like a waste of bullets. :)

Looking forward to see one day the release.

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VovaS500
VovaS500

Very nice. =)

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omegamaelstrom
omegamaelstrom

You're welcome ;)
Too bad i broke wavelength a few hours ago purging 300 russian spam bots and a few thousand posts.

SQL shat itself ;(

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