Author Topic: Variant Lightnings alternate HWP carrying Lightnings and more  (Read 2309 times)

Offline SteamXCOM

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# Lightning Variants - Mod by SteamXCOM

On Mod portal
 http://www.openxcom.com/mod/variant-lightnings
v1.2b
Features alternate LIGHTNINGs you can UPGRADE from the original vanilla LIGHTNING  with an additional hardpoint, more squad and  HWP capacity. The vanilla LIGHTNING has been left unchanged.

Currently you can build:
--The standard Vanilla Original Lightning
--Lighting 12HWP
--Lighting 16gHWP
-- Lightning AA
--Lightning  97HL (heavy lift)

BONUS craft
--Bolt
--Bolt D
--speed and range upgrades to the FIRESTORM (B, C, and D


Possible upgrades from Original Lightning:

1. Lighting_12HWP  has an orange shipping container obtained from the docks and pressed into service
and used for the transport of the HWP.
- 14 Soldiers (two more than Original)
- or 10 Soldiers + 1 Tank
- requires an Original Lightning for manufacture plus extra resources which will be consumed in the process of the upgrade.
 
2. Lighting_16gHWP interior slightly redesigned, TWO shipping containers now called PODS
- 16 Soldiers (4 more than Original)
- or 12 Soldiers + 1 Tank
- or 8 Soldiers + 2 Tanks
-- requires an Lighting_12HWP for manufacture plus extra resources which will be consumed in the process of the upgrade.

3. Lightning_AA  (Air to Air)
Lightning upgraded from Original to have
- two hardpoints (1 more than Original)
- Ladder allows roof and ground access
- requires an Original Lightning for manufacture plus extra resources which will be consumed in the process of the upgrade.

4. Lightning _97HL (heavy lift)
- two hardpoints (1 more than Original)
- Ladder allows roof and ground access
--can internally carry up to 3 HWPs
- 20 Soldiers (8 more than Original)
- or 16 Soldiers + 1 Tank
- or 12 Soldiers + 2 Tanks
- or 8 Soldiers + 3 Tanks
-- requires an Lighting_AA for manufacture plus extra resources which will be consumed in the process of the upgrade.

BONUS crafts

Bolt (short for lightning bolt)
Tiny fighter/transport
--carries 5 squad into combat
--one hardpoint


Bolt_D (an upgraded BOLT )
Tiny fighter/transport
--carries 5 squad into combat
--two hardpoints
-- requires a BOLT for manufacture plus extra resources which will be consumed in the process of the upgrade.

Firestorms B, C and D.
Included so this craft can keep up with the upgraded LIGHTNINGs
Each FIRESTORM upgrade is identical to its predecessor
--except it has has a range increase with each iteration and
--a single speed increase from the Original Firestorm  across all Firstorms.

FYI The upgraded LIGHTNINGs and Firestorms had in mind Vanilla Rebalanced by Align;
and are still a desirable and viable upgrade if this mod is used. 


See screenshots for appearance and color.

-------------------------------------
INSTALL

Xtract the .zip file into your user/mod directory of OpenXCOM

Run OpenXCOM go to options>mods and select
Lighting Variants.

Check here for where your MOD folder might be at if you do not know:

https://www.ufopaedia.org/index.php?title=Installation_FAQ_(OpenXcom)
-------------------------------------------------
Limit_Craft_Item_Capacities - LightningVariants
 (separate download found below)
Limits each of the variant craft to 80 items, includes all original game craft as well.
(OSPREY from that mod included as a convenience).

v1.2b
--fixed an HWP unable to move from its restraining tile in the LIGHTNING 97

V1.2a
__ fixed one squad not appearing if all squad deployment on LIGHTNING 12rHWP
V1.2
--Name changed from LIGHTNING HWP12r to LIGHTNING 12rHWP as the "12" could not be seen in the soldier loadout screen
--Name changed from LIGHTNING HWP16g to LIGHTNING 16gHWP as the "16" could not be seen in the soldier loadout screen
--increased capacity of LIGHTNING 12rHWP by 2 soldiers to make it a more attractive upgrade.
--The craft are built on an upgrade path requiring the original LIGHTNING to be built and used as a component for succeeding LIGHTNINGs
--more craft added
--ladders have been removed from LIGHTNINGs carrying pods or crates as soldiers can
re-enter the craft from those areas now.
--crates and pods have working doors.

V1.1
--several LIGHTINGS released

V1.0
--release

----------------------------


Additional information:
One or two re-purposed shipping containers are  stowed inside the LIGHTNING HWP series carrying the tanks.
Upon landing, the crate (called pod) drops out of the LIGHTNING.

On the LIGHTNING 12rHWP; when the tank or soldiers exit the pod, the rampwell drops.
At the beginning of the next turn, the rampwell closes again, sealing up the pod.

On the LIGHTNING 16gHWP when the tank or soldiers exit the crate, the door slides up to open.
At the beginning of the next turn, the door closes again, sealing up the pod.

Ports in the door or rampwall allow soldiers that are in the pod to fire upon targets they see, however they have to be standing to get a good shot angle.      Even though the closed door or rampwell provides some cover, aliens can  see and shoot from that end of the pod so plan accordingly!!!

The pods  are defensively orientated as the exit opening is underneath the LIGHTNING to prevent  catastrophic ambush.

If crew only mission  loadout is selected with no tank, two squad will be in the back of the pod.

The back and sides  of the  pod can protect the squaddies  from immediate attack though the front has small windows that they can shoot or be attacked through.

Additional soldiers can exit / enter the LIGHTNING HWP series through the  pod area from above or use the front stairs as normal.

Pod occupation counts for squad recovery, as it is drawn back inside the craft upon liftoff in case of an abort.

To manufacture, first a LIGHTNING must be built which is  used as a component for the LIGHTNING 12rHWP. 

The LIGHTNING 12rHWP, if desired, can be is used as a component for the LIGHTNING 16gHWP construction.

The LIGHTNING AA is a LIGHTNING with enhanced AIR to AIR capability, as it has TWO hardpoints.
To manufacture, first a LIGHTNING must be built which is  used as a component for the LIGHTNING AA .
Then, if desired, the  LIGHTNING AA  is used as a component for building the LIGHTNING 97HL which can safely  carry and deploy up to 3 HWPs from the main deck without the need for pods.


Concept:
Engineers were proud when they had at last built a working prototype of a transport aircraft using UFO technology.  Called LIGHTNING it was  fast and could be expected to carry 12 men as well as engage enemy UFO's.  However, when inspected by  the military brass, one growled his HWPs had nowhere to park.   Also the thing was a deathtrap, there was only one way in or out.   

Hatches were quickly added to the rear of the craft allowing exit either underneath or to the roof.  Another hardpoint was added.

The HWP was more difficult.  Commanders preferred the Skyranger, it could carry 3.  Various attempts were made to fit a tank or two inside the LIGHTNING.  However as an attack craft, a load of tanks threatening to break free of their restraining cables during maneuvers was too much of a hazard.  The issue was securing the tanks while being able to deploy them quickly. 

An engineer determined in the LIGHTNING's case, the best idea was to carry only one tank secured inside of a modified shipping container nicknamed the "pod." 

Block and tackle using chains lifted the pod into the LIGHTNING where it was securely stowed during flight. 

When the LIGHTNING landed, the pod instantly dropped carrying a portion of the craft's floor with it.  (Chains attached to the floor would be used to later to lift the floor and the pod sitting on it back into the craft).

Upon impact, The dropped pod's rampwall would open and the tank could emerge ready for battle.  Soldiers would exit the LIGHTNING either out the front assault door or use the hatches to the roof or travel through the deployed pod. 

Portable grates were placed over the deck opening above the deployed pod to assist in moving around in the craft.


If the HWP still survived, When ready to launch, it would be hoisted back into the LIGHTNING inside the pod;  re-sealing the lower deck opening for flight.

Later improvements in the power plant allowed the additional ability to carry another pod culminating in grav clamps, togehter with conventional restraints,  which secured the tanks safely in the main deck area.

During the Lightning's development, smaller craft nicknamed BOLT was conceived.  Someone wanted to call it "Midget Lightning," as it strongly resembled the mainline LIGHTNING design except for size, but BOLT stuck.   The idea was that many UFO's were small craft crewed only by a handful of aliens that did not require a full complement of soldiers to recover.

BOLT would both challenge and recover these smaller craft with its 5 man crew of "trained killers."



-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Credits

The investigation of these mods help in implementation of this one

--Thunder Mod by hellrazor
--REAVER'S ARMADA mod by The Reaver of Darkness
--Some parts from Dioxine Piratez mod(ie ladder, chains and crate parts)
--Forum hints thanks to Hobbes and Roxis231
--Vanilla Rebalanced by Align (adjusted craft Speeds to compensate if this mod is used )


License
Please give credit for any use of this file.

This mod in part or in whole may be used as part of any other mod.
https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,5501.0.html

DOWNLOAD FILE link
below this line
« Last Edit: August 13, 2017, 07:31:01 pm by SteamXCOM »

Offline SteamXCOM

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2017, 07:09:41 am »
 Alternate Lightning HWP - Mod by SteamXCOM  UPDATED


New in 1.1
 Used updated "fix" maps.

The pod is redesigned in keeping with the crude implmentation of Earth and UFO technology.
The LIGHTNING cannot replace the SKYRANGER in sheer transport capacity, however it should be more useful now.
Hatch in the back has been added, soldiers can use it to access the top of the Lightning as well as ground level.

----------------------------------------------



Concept:

Engineers were proud when they had at last built a working prototype of a transport aircraft using UFO technology.
Called LIGHTNING it was  fast and could be expected to carry 12 men as well as engage enemy UFO's.  However, when inspected by  the military brass, one growled his HWPs had nowhere to park.   Also the thing was a deathtrap, there was only one way in or out.   

Hatches were quickly added to the rear of the craft allowing exit either underneath or to the roof.

The HWP was more difficult.  Commanders prefered the Skyranger, it could carry 3.  Various attempts were made to fit a tank or two inside the LIGHTNING.  However as an attack craft, a load of tanks threatening to break free of their restraing cables during manuvers was too much of a hazard.  The issue was securing the tanks while being able to deploy them quickly. 

An engineer determined in the LIGHTNING's case, the best idea was to carry only one tank secured inside of a modified shipping containter nicknamed the "pod."  Block and tackle using chains lifted the pod into the LIGHTNING where it was securely stowed during flight. 

When the LIGHTNING landed, the pod instantly dropped carrying a portion of the craft's floor with it. 
(Chains attached to the floor would be used to later to lift the floor and the pod sitting on it back into the craft).

Upon impact, The dropped pod's rampwall would open and the tank could emerge ready for battle.  Soldiers would exit the LIGHTNING either out the front assault door or use the hatches to the roof or ground level; or even travel through the deployed pod. 

Portable grates were placed over part of the deck opening above
the deployed pod to assist in moving around in the craft.


If the HWP still survived, When ready to launch, it would be hoisted back into the LIGHTNING inside
the pod;  re-sealing the lower deck opening for flight

Offline The Reaver of Darkness

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2017, 10:01:37 am »
That's really cool! I like it!

Offline SteamXCOM

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2017, 01:09:16 am »
Thank you,
While testing I used the NEW BATTLE to see the craft quickly,  I'm glad they have that function.
This game loads and exits fast making it easy to work with and I appreciate being able to see changes almost immediately.

Usually I chose scout and beginner in NEW BATTLE , however to test the pod whether or not I wanted windows in it, the random feature delivered me a terror mission with MUTONS on a high difficulty.

What a meatgrinder! With windows, solders who drop into the pod get hashed from several different angles.
I tried making the windows in the pod smaller with associated LOFT blockage but the mutants were still getting one shot kills through the openings.  I decided to leave them out.
Inside the package, though  is the walls for the windowed pod if desired which can be updated in MAPVIEW.
The windowed pod looks slick.

As an aside, it was easy to get caught up in the battle.  The mutons kill everybody in town then head over to the LIGHTNING.
They invade the pod but cannot get into the craft from there although occasionally they will go up the stairs through the front door.

The next thing might be to make the HWP LIGHTNING an addition rather than a replacement, craft, ....

....from your other mods, you might be familiar with that process, how do you make a stand alone craft rather than a replacement?


Offline The Reaver of Darkness

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2017, 06:03:11 am »
....from your other mods, you might be familiar with that process, how do you make a stand alone craft rather than a replacement?
You just copy and paste all parts of the craft from the main game ruleset and then alter the parts you want changed. A standalone craft needs at minimum an entry from crafts.rul. It's ideal to give it a UFOPedia entry. You have to set a map, tileset, and sprite but these things can simply be copied from existing craft if you don't have any outside images to add in. Simply declaring "sprite: 3" is enough to make the craft look like an interceptor in your base view, as sprite number 3 is declared by default to use the interceptor sprite. Similarly, you can declare "image_id: UP002.SPK" for the UFOPedia entry to use the interceptor background art.

If you want to add in your own map for the craft, you must include a .map and .rmp file for the craft (even if the map does not contain any nodes, it still needs an empty .rmp file made with the map). These should be in the subfolders MAPS and ROUTES within the mod main folder. If you use an altered tileset, you must put the .MCD, .PCK, and .TAB files in a TERRAIN subfolder within the mod main folder. If you wish to use an alternate tileset for your mod, it must be declared in the crafts.rul section, example:
Code: [Select]
    battlescapeTerrainData:
      name: LIGHTNI
      mapDataSets:
        - BLANKS
        - LIGHTNIA
      mapBlocks:
        - name: LIGHTNI
          width: 20
          length: 20
and it must be declared in MapView's MapEdit.dat file, example:
Code: [Select]
Tileset:UFO - Ships
type:1
rootpath:${rootPathUFO}
rmpPath:${rmpPathUFO}
blankPath:${blankUFO}
palette:ufo
files:XCom
PLANE:plane
LIGHTNIN:LIGHTNIN
LIGHTNI:LIGHTNIA
AVENGER:AVENGER

The code I have above (and in my mod) abandons LIGHTNIN (leaving it alone in the game code) and links the Lightning craft with the LIGHTNI map which uses the LIGHTNIA tileset. This means a different mod may call upon the LIGHTNIN map or tileset and they will be unaltered by my mod. It is important to make your mod open to compatibility in this way. I could alter the existing LIGHTNIN files for the same effect on an unmodded game, but it would cause conflicts with mods involving the Lightning.

Offline SteamXCOM

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2017, 05:33:18 pm »
You just copy and paste all parts of the craft from the main game ruleset and then alter the parts you want changed.

I've been following your tips and I think I got it now!
The map, route and other files , as long as they are named correctly, appear to be properly identified by the game.
I have to check my LIGHTNIN files to see if changes have been made, but after first attempts at editing the Lightning, I have placed all edited files in another PCK/MCD.

The rul files have been taking the most time as copy and paste (using Notepad ++) moves indents around causing YAML errors out the wazoo so I have to go and delete out the offending indents.   Moreover, typos from the similarly named LIGHTING variants cause overlaps.  Definitively labor intensive work demanding concentration and no interruptions.
----
At last it may be ready, for the ships are now showing without error in the NEW BATTLE section. SOON it will be possible for players to manufacture one of the four variants  or choose the original if desired.

------------edit

Working at playthrough discovered this mod of yours, adding it, since AP is underused (usually go for incendiary or HE)
AP Weakness
https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,4784.0.html
« Last Edit: June 19, 2017, 07:39:16 pm by SteamXCOM »

Offline The Reaver of Darkness

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2017, 06:48:46 am »
The rul files have been taking the most time as copy and paste (using Notepad ++) moves indents around causing YAML errors out the wazoo so I have to go and delete out the offending indents.
I've been avoiding this by leaving my rulesets more similar to the originals. For example, my Reaver's Aliens mod has the rulesets divided into alienMissions, alienRaces, missionScripts, and units, instead of collating them all into one .rul file. It works the same as far as I can tell. When I set out to make the full mod, I just worked at combining text from all of the .rul files with the same name.


If you want, you can post a craft mod here and I'll bug test it for you.

Offline SteamXCOM

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2017, 06:32:42 pm »


If you want, you can post a craft mod here and I'll bug test it for you.

Thank you Reaver, here you are:
------------------------------

EDIT as of v03 All should be fixed, and ready for distribution
Another attachment with screenshots (not a whole lot different from pictures already posted)
« Last Edit: June 24, 2017, 06:42:20 pm by SteamXCOM »

Offline The Reaver of Darkness

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #8 on: June 22, 2017, 09:56:57 pm »
The mod won't load because the file Lightning.rul calls for Resources/Lightning/UFOpedia.gif but the mod folder does not contain the file. You can put a resources folder in the main mod folder to call images from within your extraSprites ruleset. I loaded the mod just fine by deleting the Lightning.rul file.

The extraStrings section of ufopaedia.rul has both the names and the descriptions sharing the same labels, missing the _UFOPEDIA part for the descriptions. This causes all of the names of the ship to display the description instead (except in the manufacturing list for some reason).

These are the only major bugs I found. There's a minor glitch in the way 14 soldiers spawn inside the 14x variants but it shouldn't cause any problems other than triggering OCD. The tiles act a bit funny: a soldier inside the craft but on the ladder counts as outside the craft, while a soldier under the craft but on the ladder counts as inside. The tank can be hanging off the end of the crate door but count as inside the craft. A soldier on top of the craft counts as inside (probably same as original), unless they are standing on the top of the ladder.

I can't help but notice that all 4 variants are remarkably similar. It's really two variants plus color changes to the tank's crate, and the only real difference between the 12 series and 14 series is that the latter allows you to put more soldiers on. It's slightly more expensive and it's really the same ship, simply with a number change allowing more of the redundant deployment list entries to get used. I would recommend that you select one of them to present to the public, while the other three should be your personal development copies. I think the 14g is my favorite.

It looks like you're trying to inject some realism into the craft, but since the tank's crate is off to one side, it makes the craft seem unbalanced. I would think the engineers would put the crate in the center, and they would build multiple smaller power units in an array around it in order to balance the craft. I like how you have the soldier spawns balanced, though.

Lastly, I see you got the Lightning's door to work! I am impressed and wish to know how you made this happen.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2017, 09:59:51 pm by The Reaver of Darkness »

Offline SteamXCOM

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2017, 07:12:21 am »
Updated and fixed in my previous post, unless there is some screwball thing it should be fine, two craft, Lightning HWP12r (the orange shipping crate) and the HWP14 g the more "sophisticated" one.
And thank you very much for your assistance, i appreciate it mightily.

FYI What is  "other than triggering OCD?"  When you mean by ladder, do you mean  the grated area over the tank pod? The grated tile acts like a floor except for appearance and hit points. 

When moving a bit the center console to better balance the HWP14g, it was odd, the game was spawning the HWP tank into the main compartment in all different directions.  It reassembled once it was selected.  I put one of those invisible blocks included in the lightnin tilesheet and the tank went back to its crate.

The spawning has to be tested frequently as even the facing of the soldiers seemed to affect the spawns or not so I had to redo it on the 14g in order to have all come in as they should.

The door is a function of the updated universal patch I think that included fixed LIGHTNTN files as I do not remember doing anything special to them .  The original files under OpenXcom, yes the door does not open but functions as a magic pass thru wall.

EDIT---------------------------------------------------------------------------
FYI What is  "other than triggering OCD?"
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
I finally got it, good one

I thought for awhile "OCD" might be some odd behavior triggered in the game itself in relation to the spawning.
Yes it s wizard's caldron in there, much of trying to set up the LIGHTNING spawns, insuring all the persons appear; as during the process, not a few were AWOL.  It certainly is easer than in the days of XcomUTIL 6.3 where the soldiers were frequently spawning all on top of each  other in 1 square outside the craft.

On the LIGHTNING DOORS, ran into this after the fact as someone else had already successfully tackled the issue with the pass thru without opening doors:
https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,2040.0.html

It is possible his tweaks might have been added to the patch as I did not have any trouble with the stock LIGHTNTING doors myself.

If you standalone .exe install the NIGHTLY and all goes well, the patch downloads with it, else get it separately:

https://openxcom.org/download/extras/universal-patch.zip

FYI previous uploaded files updated with version to better keep track, unless some issue, should be ready for distribution
 
« Last Edit: June 24, 2017, 06:43:33 pm by SteamXCOM »

Offline The Reaver of Darkness

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #10 on: June 27, 2017, 12:53:49 am »
What is  "other than triggering OCD?"
I meant that 11 out of 12 within the main craft were in a nice formation around the center while one was out of line.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Obsessive%E2%80%93compulsive_disorder


Nice info on the doors, thanks!
« Last Edit: June 27, 2017, 01:54:26 am by The Reaver of Darkness »

Offline SteamXCOM

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #11 on: June 27, 2017, 06:37:45 pm »
I meant that 11 out of 12 within the main craft were in a nice formation around the center while one was out of line

Yes, in every squad there is a Gomer Pyle, it seems.

Quote
Nice info on the doors, thanks!


I'm working on a left facing door set, a clone of the default set except for the facing; however no matter what I do they don't work, though, if I create doors matching the same facing as default, they seem to have no issue.  At this time I gather it has to be some form of map or even game limitation.

Also I notice if the diagonal wall set of the LIGHTING is used on the ground, there is black area like it expects a full square to be there.  This condition was rectified with the ground level ladder by actually placing a tile in the ladder sprite, else it would be a black square with the ladder coming out of it.

Offline The Reaver of Darkness

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Re: Lightning replacement Lightning_HWP_12 or HWP_14
« Reply #12 on: June 27, 2017, 07:50:11 pm »
I'm working on a left facing door set, a clone of the default set except for the facing; however no matter what I do they don't work, though, if I create doors matching the same facing as default, they seem to have no issue.  At this time I gather it has to be some form of map or even game limitation.

Also I notice if the diagonal wall set of the LIGHTING is used on the ground, there is black area like it expects a full square to be there.  This condition was rectified with the ground level ladder by actually placing a tile in the ladder sprite, else it would be a black square with the ladder coming out of it.
The information you provided earlier was very helpful and I was able to figure out how doors work. I copied what you had in the ddoors.mcd tileset to start with and fixed all of the issues, plus I rectified the art alignment, and I made the two sides of each door look unique. I made only double-wide doors.

The thing I think you were missing was if you swap the art for a door to go the other way, you should set it as a north wall instead of a west wall both in the mcd and the map, and you should alter its LOFTs to go the other way. I'm not sure how much of that is important or which parts you did, but I figured it out by comparing the Lightning's door to the basic UFO doors which do go both ways.

I added the Avenger doors to my Lightning tileset--I had to shift the door graphics to the other side of the image in order to allow them to be placed one square further in so they could go on as wall instead of content. Their LOFTs are set to the other side because of their placement. I had some difficulty at first with aliens being able to see and fire into the craft but it seems pretty secure now that I've got everything lined up. The doors close and nothing comes in. Provided nobody inside gets mind controlled or panics and exits the ship, it should remain a secure bastion that the aliens won't enter or attack in any way.

Maybe I'll add nodes so the aliens can get in, in case someone wants to hide inside and wait.


Check out my lightning and the rest of my mod: https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,5543.0.html
« Last Edit: June 27, 2017, 07:52:22 pm by The Reaver of Darkness »

Offline SteamXCOM

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Re: Variant Lightnings alternate HWP carrying Lightnings and more
« Reply #13 on: July 14, 2017, 12:55:58 pm »
UPDATED At the  top post (making it easier to find) Variant Lightings 1.2b
Uploaded new version July 23 2017
Attached ScreenShots

« Last Edit: July 24, 2017, 04:18:18 am by SteamXCOM »