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Twilight Zone

GeorgeH

Flippered Out
Staff member
Site Supporters
I have decided to update Slamt1lt's last version of the "Twilight Zone" which you can download here:


The table was originally built by Francisco666 and the models were built by ROM. The challenge with be lighting all the models.

I have started adding physics. Oddly, Slam never added a sound for when the ball hits the slingshots. Maybe he forgot. I've added it. The voice quotes are most likely from the original ROM. They sound like they have a lot of static. I have found some new sounds that will hopefully sound better.

If any of you would like to have something changed on this table, please let me know.

List of Objectives

:check: 1. Replace poorly recorded sounds, especially voice quotes.
:check: 2. Add new instruction cards.
:check: 3. Add custom physics and dynamic flippers.
:check: 4. Add emkickers to the slingshots to improve physics.
:check: 5. Add lighting mod and add Lighting Control Panel to the script.
:check: 6. Add HUD Toggle Key that saves setting.
:check: 7. Add new textures on the table loading screen.
:check: 8. Add menu system with options for lighting, balls per game, HUD on/off, possibly light instruction cards and other things as needed (Plus add # 18 ) .
:check: 9. Add message that looks at BAM version.
:check: 10. Add shadow maps.
:check: 11 Add plunger pull special script.
:check: 12. Add switchable option for 3 or 5 balls per game that saves setting.
:check: 13. Add bulbs that provide the halo that shines through the slingshots.
:check: 14. Add side rails (sometimes called side blades).
:check: 16. Add bump maps to the models.
:check: 17. Add DMD background color, ball/flipper shadows and ball configuration to the script.
:check: 18. Add rock version of theme music and make it switchable with the default theme music.
:check: 19. Add menu option to switch between Gimli/GeorgeH flippers and Shiva's flippers.
:check: 20. Add menu option to switch table slope so end user can easily change ball speed.
:check: 21. Add menu option to switch bounce control options.
:check: 22. Convert images and video images to use power of 2.
:check: 23.Lower right ramp.
:check: 24. Make videos that play during the attract mode switchable in-game.
:check: 25. Add BAM code that allows the score to exceed 2 billion points.
:check:25. Fix the end of game video so it can be turned off. Also fix the end of game video so it plays the correct audio file and remove the broken Rod Steiger video.
 
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NitroNimbus

Pinball Hall of Famer
Site Supporters
Twilight Zone, what an awesome show back in the day.
It was seriously some tripped out shit... watching this show as a kid.
I wasn't allowed to watch it, but always found a way.
I feel this table is a bit the same, I still have no idea what is going on...
But I am certain I will play it more once you do you magic, looking forward to the release, cheers!
 

GeorgeH

Flippered Out
Staff member
Site Supporters
Thanks Nitro,

I think the biggest problem with the table is that it looks cluttered but the original table looks cluttered too. I am hoping I can make it look better with the lighting.

I watched a video where the player cradled the ball and then hit the left ramp easily. I can't do that with the table right now even after adding my custom physics and dynamic flippers. The ball only goes up the ramp partially and rolls back down. I am not sure I can fix it but will give it a go.
 

wild

No Bam no Play
Chat Moderator
The ball only goes up the ramp partially and rolls back down
there is a way to solve it, I don't know which ramp it is .... but I have solved these problems when the ramp is steep (for reasons of space or construction) I did it for zaccaria "butterfly" and for some of my other tables, which ramp are we talking about, a photo?
 

Isaac Sauvage

Meep!
Site Supporters
Consultant
Twilight Zone is to me, one of those rare pins in which the designers (Lawlor & crew) went absolutely all-out with the toys and fun stuff, yet the game still hangs together and never quite feels garish. I'm not sure how many other tables you can really say that about. So yeah, excellent choice on this one, George!

Seriously, if there's a university-level course on pinball design, this one really deserves to be part of the curriculum. Not just as an example of the above, but also because it's hugely evocative of the original show, and just damn fun to play.

Btw, did anyone catch the B&W real pin mod someone did a while back? Me, I want to like it, but I feel like they went a little overboard with the concept. Still, I think a version in which the overall colors were simply toned down a bit might look nice.

Actually, there was a concept I always wanted to get to back when I was designing in VP-- it would be a table which started out utterly bleak in terms of colors & sounds, and minimal in terms of features, but as the user hit shots over time, the game would add more and more color and fun extras to the mix. Potentially, if a user got in to wizard mode or something, the game would look like an eye-candy fireworks display, with a pumping soundtrack. Something like that, anyway.

No doubt it would be expensive & complicated to do in real life, but could be perfect for a simulation. Indeed, Jeff Block's "Colossal Power 2" is a bit of a parallel example. The look doesn't change too much on that one, but you have to level-up the game in order to get all the features working. Really delightful concept, if maybe frustrating at times, hehe.
 

Attachments

  • TZ - B&W mod.jpg
    TZ - B&W mod.jpg
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GeorgeH

Flippered Out
Staff member
Site Supporters
there is a way to solve it, I don't know which ramp it is .... but I have solved these problems when the ramp is steep (for reasons of space or construction) I did it for zaccaria "butterfly" and for some of my other tables, which ramp are we talking about, a photo?
I am not a fan of the power assists that are possible on FP. I would prefer to only use those as a last resort.

...But if you have other ideas, the ramp has a red arrow pointing to it in the screenshot below. I did a test and I was able to lower the ramp a bit but not sure it will be enough to help. I'll try it tomorrow.

```Twilight Zone ULTIMATE 1.02.png
 

wild

No Bam no Play
Chat Moderator
I am not a fan of the power assists that are possible on FP. I would prefer to only use those as a last resort.
power assists???to know what they are, I could answer you, but I don't know what this.......is
...But if you have other ideas,
if you don't have space or margin to adjust the ramp .... you have little to do .... and few choices to fix it, or rebuild the whole table, make it,longer, so that you can lengthen the ramp, and make it less steep, or put something that helps you get the ball up ..... other solutions but not optimal, including: make the ball lighter, or increase the strength of the fins ....o reduce the tilt of the table(tableslope) things you know very well,right.

I have found a solution that is not a real gem, but at least it helps a little to reduce the inconvenience of a steep ramp ...... that is to create the kicker ramp
 

GeorgeH

Flippered Out
Staff member
Site Supporters
Gimli knows how to create what I call a "power assist". It is a trick that basically forces the ball up the ramp when you hit the entrance to the ramp so there is no way it can roll back down. I don't know how to do it abut don't like to use it because it eliminates the skill of hitting the ramp.

Kicker ramp? I assume you place an invisible kicker at the bottom of the ramp.
 

wild

No Bam no Play
Chat Moderator
It is a trick that basically forces the ball up the ramp when you hit the entrance to the ramp so there is no way it can roll back down.
a trick??? what kind, via object, or script?
Kicker ramp? I assume you place an invisible kicker at the bottom of the ramp
not exactly......if you put a kicker at the beginning of the ramp,(apart from that you have to tilt it and put it at the right height) it conditions the ball by its push force (strength)and if it is not enough to overcome the steepness of the ramp, go back, with the consequence that you will see the ball kicked endlessly.....no

my system, yes it is based on a kicker, but not at the beginning of the ramp, but, create a kicker ramp, like the one you have on the table (at least as similar as possible) by overlapping it with the real one, about halfway down the ramp , so you see that the ball enters the ramp as soon as it goes up, and arrives on the kicker pushes the ball to help it complete the ramp
 

GeorgeH

Flippered Out
Staff member
Site Supporters
I decided to update the instruction cards. I tried several cards that were in color but they didn't look right. I will have a menu option that switches between 3 and 5 balls per game. I will do a texture swap of the card on the right so it displays the correct balls per game.
Did you guys like the menu option that lights the cards and turns them off that I added to "Space Shuttle"? I might add it here if you like it.

```Twilight Zone ULTIMATE 1.022.png
 

Gimli

Pinball Hall of Famer
OK thanks Paolo. I will do that if needed.
Another option is to have a special case exception in your dynamic flipper code

Let's say we are using the right flipper to hit a left ramp but only from a cradled position.

You can tweak the omega based on ball speed and contact point or even create a flag " if cradled = true then...."

If contact point =0 and speed =0 then cradled =true

If cradled =true then new flipper code

Then in sub newtontick
If ball.speed > 200 then cradled = false
End sub
 
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wild

No Bam no Play
Chat Moderator
Another option is to have a special case exception in your dynamic flipper code
to do this you have to do mathematical calculations? how do you understand and calculate, at which point you have to hit the ball with the fin to make it go on the ramp?
 

Gimli

Pinball Hall of Famer
The above is just describing the idea in actuality you need to use debug code
To give the actual values that bam reads from a cradled ball
 

Gimli

Pinball Hall of Famer
to do this you have to do mathematical calculations? how do you understand and calculate, at which point you have to hit the ball with the fin to make it go on the ramp?
You simply have 2 dynamic flipper codes one for cradled ball = true and one for cradled ball = false

You just tweak the constants a little in the previous math until you like it
 

wild

No Bam no Play
Chat Moderator
You simply have 2 dynamic flipper codes one for cradled ball = true and one for cradled ball = false

You just tweak the constants a little in the previous math until you like it
it seems easy to do ..... but far from me to understand......first I should understand what this is what you call "cradled ball" .... what action it is?
 

GeorgeH

Flippered Out
Staff member
Site Supporters
Thanks Bob but I am not sure how well it would work because it is always hard to hit both ramps. Plus I set the MaxOmega to 60 which is higher that I have ever set it and it doesn't seem to help much.

Shiva sent me some code that he is using on his flippers. I think I will try it first.

I managed to lower both ramps on a test table I created where I removed many of the the table objects except the ones needed to make the table work. I managed to lower the highest point on the right ramp from 65 to 46 and left ramp from 55 to 47. The ball goes up higher on the right ramp but not high enough from a cradled ball. I am not sure I will use this or not.
 

wild

No Bam no Play
Chat Moderator
Cradled ball means when you catch and hold ball with the flipper
ok...I understand what is the "Cradled ball"....but, ball withheld, is no longer suitable as a term.....just an opinion

well...I think I understand, when you cradled ball, and try to aim for the ramp (any ramp one,that has) the xBAM.Ball.Speed is = 0 ... just because the ball is stopped .... when you release the fin to aim the ramp, it returns ball.speed> 200, and with the modification of the higher omega say 60, as George says for example, you would be more likely to overcome the steepness of the ramp....did I get it right?
 
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Gimli

Pinball Hall of Famer
ok...I understand what is the "Cradled ball"....but, ball withheld, is no longer suitable as a term.....just an opinion

well...I think I understand, when you cradled ball, and try to aim for the ramp (any ramp one,that has) the xBAM.Ball.Speed is = 0 ... just because the ball is stopped .... when you release the fin to aim the ramp, it returns ball.speed> 200, and with the modification of the higher ometa say 60, as George says for example, you would be more likely to overcome the steepness of the ramp....did I get it right?
Yes Exactly
 

Gimli

Pinball Hall of Famer
Thanks Bob but I am not sure how well it would work because it is always hard to hit both ramps. Plus I set the MaxOmega to 60 which is higher that I have ever set it and it doesn't seem to help much.

Shiva sent me some code that he is using on his flippers. I think I will try it first.

I managed to lower both ramps on a test table I created where I removed many of the the table objects except the ones needed to make the table work. I managed to lower the highest point on the right ramp from 65 to 46 and left ramp from 55 to 47. The ball goes up higher on the right ramp but not high enough from a cradled ball. I am not sure I will use this or not.
ok George
Shiva's flipper code likely has many dynamically controlled parameters...at least the one he previously released did

In addition to omega , temporarily changing the bounce will also accelerate the ball coming off the flipper
 

GeorgeH

Flippered Out
Staff member
Site Supporters
Shiva's flipper code likely has many dynamically controlled parameters...at least the one he previously released did

In addition to omega , temporarily changing the bounce will also accelerate the ball coming off the flipper
Shiva's code has many parameters for sure.

I hadn't thought of changing the bounce. I will try it. Hmm. I am still using your code that turns the bounce control off when the ball speed is less than 200. Maybe I will try removing it.
 

shiva

Administrator
Staff member
Site Supporters
If you lok at my code, I also put in presets for bounce control as well. I believe these are scriptable, so you can always change the bounce to suit your shots and then flip them back afterwards.
 

Isaac Sauvage

Meep!
Site Supporters
Consultant
If any of you would like to have something changed on this table, please let me know.
Well, I don't know if you saw it, but I gave you a suggestion above. I.e., the idea of scaling back the colors a bit. Of course, I'm not sure if that's a capability already built-in to FP / BAM, as you can do with overall lighting via a slider I believe.


re: Boosting a ball up a ramp,
In VP, I remember placing a trigger near the bottom of a ramp, which linked to examining the X & Y velocity in script. If the ball was close to 'making it' up the ramp, I could give it a little boost via XVel and YVel. If not, I could just leave the ball alone. It was a nice little solution for a ramp that was acting 'unfairly,' but no idea if that same method works in FP / BAM.

IIRC FarSight (the Pinball Arcade guys) used to go overboard with such tweaks, making their tables downright wonky to play. I don't miss those tables.
 
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