-Helms Deep- Reborn
SeriouS_Samurai  [developer] Apr 5, 2013 @ 5:54am
Changelog v.16
March 10, 2012

Changes from version 15 to 16:

An update is never late, nor is it early, it arrives precisely when it means to!
I would like to thank everyone for providing feedback. Most of the changes were suggested by the community!

Full changelog:

--- KEY CHANGES ---

Helm's Deep Reborn is now powered by "Map Refresher Basic" (MRB) developed by SeriouS_Samurai (me). It increases your average frames per second (FPS) when playing a map (source engine). At the moment it ONLY works for Helm's Deep Reborn in L4D2. Installing Helm's Deep Reborn VPK for L4D2 will NOT enchance performance for any other maps you have installed on your machine for L4D2 or any other game or mod.
How it works: The Map Refresher Basic does what the name says, it refreshes a map before you play it. It pre-calculates areas in the map - this means that the first seconds, after you load/restart a map, will be extremely laggy - followed by improved FPS. The amount of fps improved depends on what system you have.

- Everyone's survival record (time) has been reset to 0.

- Added a custom made respawn system, scripted by The Fish, the maker of "The Sacrifice True Ending". The Fish made the respawn-script exclusively for Helm's Deep Reborn only and it's the first map to ever have it. If you are going to use this respawn-script for your own map make sure you give credits to The Fish.
How the custom respawn system works: There are 2 levers in the map which can be used to teleport dead players. Press and hold (6 sec) one of the levers.
One lever can be found above the gate to the right (close to the weapon stack) and the other one inside the keep behind the mounted machine gun. Each one of the levers can only be used once. A respawn-lever will disappear after it has been used.

- After everyone in your team died after 7mins, sometimes the L4D1 bots wouldn't appear the next round. This bug should now be fixed.

- The L4D2 music will now automatically turn off in each player's options when the battle starts.
EDIT: A few admins have reported that their L4D2 music doesn't automatically turn off - some servers block this command. For best experience make sure that the L4D2 music is off in options.

- Players will now start with melee weapons instead of pistols. You have my sword... and my axe!
L4D1 bots will still have pistols.

- Added a 3 second blackscreen fade at the beginning of every round - during this the map gets refreshed and survivors get their melee etc.

- Increased the time it takes to turn off the LOTR music (using the lever in the armory).

- Higher detailed areas including new custom models (NOTE: Some of the new details are weapons such as bows and spears etc., these weapons can't be used... yet).

- Changed all prop_physics (except explosives) into prop_dynamic_override (improves pings). Changed all prop_dynamics with no inputs into prop_statics (improves fps).


--- ITEM CHANGES (DETAILED DESCRIPTIONS) ---

- Added back the best weapon AK-47 at the beginning, but with a twist (read below)!

- There are now less weapons in certain weapon entities:
AK-47, Auto Shotgun, M16 Rifle, Hunting Rifle, SCAR Rifle, Sniper Rifle and Spas-12 = 2 weapons in each weapon entity.
Chrome Shotgun, Pump Shotgun, Silenced- and Normal-SMG = 1 weapon in each weapon entity.
These new values will nerf all tactics with players moving weapons from different locations and not everyone can choose the same main weapon at the beginning, there will be a lack of good weapons. Take note that this is also a performance improvement.
BUG: Bots ignore the amount of weapons in each weapon entity, this results in 3 bots having the same weapon even if there is only 1 weapon that can be picked up. This means that the values shown above may be different, for instance the Chrome shotgun sometimes has 2 weapons in its weapon entity but it should only have 1.

- The Magnum Pistol in the armory will now be there at the beginning, instead of appearing when you return (after you passed the witch). However I moved its position to the where all the melee items are so you get a chance to grab the Magnum before a bot does (Everyone will basically start with a melee but 1 lucky guy will get a magnum at the beginning - this means that chainsaws are great since they give a pistol after depleting it.)

- Removed 1 out of 2 chainsaws from the armory, however the removed chainsaw will appear when you return to the armory (after you passed the witch) to avoid players depleting chainsaws and taking lots of pistols early game.

- Deleted 1 out of 3 grenade launchers in the armory (This nerfs the weapon moving tactic and if a team used all 3 grenade launchers at the beginning it would just be laggy and noisy).

- Deleted 1 molotov in the armory.

- Several ammo piles will now last shorter for game balance, for instance: When the armory was blocked by the horses you could go right outside the keep and take ammo, this tactic can no longer be used.
Question: When do ammo piles get depleted?
Answer: Each ammo pile in an area with a strategic advantage has a "timed life", this time is synced with the events and the events occur at random times which means that the ammo pile accessibility is random. Some ammo piles have unlimited ammo, for instance the ammo pile inside the armory (the starting rooms).

- Deleted the explosive ammo found at the platform that unlocks when the deeping wall explode (If I ever find out how to put explosive ammo ALREADY DEPLOYED I could rework the item setup and create a better experience).

- When you jumped over the burning hay there would be a katana to the right. This katana has now been replaced with a Magnum Pistol, and the Magnum Pistol that could be found after you passed the katana has been replaced with a medkit.

- Replaced all the Normal-SMGs (except for the one in the armory) with Silenced SMGs.

- The explosive ammo above the gate has been replaced with a normal ammo pile, but it has very limited ammo (Experienced players would use the explosive ammo found above the gate to stumble the witch when they would retreat into the keep. If you want to use this tactic against the witch you need to carry explosive ammo found at the very beginning of the map).

- Deleted the M16 Rifle and the grenade launcher above the gate to the right, at the weapon stack.

- Deleted most of the items on the second floor inside the keep and added a Magnum Pistol where the box the box used to be (The box itself has been deleted due to performance reasons).

- Removed half of the health items that appear when you gear up for 20 sec before the charge event. The health items which have been removed will appear after you won the map in the armory on the same table.
Players will focus more on weapon selection, ammo refill etc. instead of healing with so many medkits, another reason is that there might be items (leftovers) within the charge path as you charge out, and a third reason is that when you win the map, you know there will always be medkits and pills (if you have used all the other health items in the map).

- Deleted 1 propane (white) from the wooden trap (that drop down explosives if you shoot it) outside the keep.

- Deleted 1 gascan outside the fortress where enemies don't walk.

- Added 1 molotov at the l4d1 bots location.

- Moved 1 gascan from L4D1 bots location to the platform directly behind/below the L4D1 bots.

- The gascans OUTSIDE the fortress in the field cannot be picked up. This will eliminate the tactic that allowed players to stack a great number of gascans and save them until the wall exploded or until fall back.
NOTE: The gascans very close to the zombie spawns can be picked up. If a gascan doesn't glow you cannot pick it up.

- Changed the position of a lot of items, but they are very close to their former locations.


--- NON-ITEM CHANGES ---

- If your entire team is still defending the stairs (which you use to fall back at approx. 7mins) maximum tank spawn will START when the survival timer hits approx. 8mins and 40 seconds . Once the gate event starts, after you've jumped over the burning hay, maximum tank spawn will STOP. No console message will be shown when maximum tank spawn starts or stops.

- Corrected all console messages (grammar errors) and shortened some ridiculously informative messages.


--- INSIDE THE KEEP ---

- Maximum tank spawn, when you are defending inside the keep, will now START when the sun rises, and it will STOP when all players are gathered at the top of the tower. The console message "WARNING: Tank spawn is now set to maximum!" has been deleted.

- When you are defending inside the keep, enemies will avoid taking very long paths to the keep (enemies are smarter). This will fix the lack of enemies and it also encourages players to use molotovs and pipebombs when defending inside the keep.

- The horses will now block the armory 1 min earlier, when the survival timer hits approx. 20mins.

- The mounted machine gun inside the keep has been balanced, it might catch on fire! You can still use it, at the cost of your hp. At the beginning the fire will not deal high dmg, as time passes the fire will deal higher dmg.
Question: What causes the mounted machine gun and the props around it to catch on fire?
Answer: A stack of gascans.

- During screen flash when the sun rises, ONLY enemies on the second floor inside the keep will die. This imba effect used to apply inside the entire keep (in old version).

- Added invisble walls at the top of the tower to prevent players from falling down when meeting with Gimli (when you win the map these invisble walls will disappear). This also blocks the shortcut for servers with gravity and fixes 3 glitches when the teleporting from the tower to the armory (when you are about to gear up before the charge).

- Added sligthly more common infected at the beginning of the charge event.


--- GANDALF EVENT ---

- The first player that reaches the field, at the end of the charge event, will no longer freeze (camera focused on Gandalf).

- At the end of the charge event all the players will be transported to Gandalf. This makes the Gandalf event less confusing and if someone gets incapped while charging out he can easily be saved, however the main reason is simply to make the special infected spawn (and surround you!).

- Players will now get pushed back if they try to go close to the zombie spawns during the Gandalf event (same effect like at the beginning of the map but applied to the Gandalf event).

- During the Gandalf event you can no longer run up the stairs which you use to fall back at 7mins and escape from the tanks. When you win the map the stairs will unlock again.

- The damage done by Gandalf's magic aura has been greatly reduced. Tanks are now a greater threat at this event.

- Players using cheats such as "noclip" can no longer make Gandalf arrive (as much as 15mins) earlier, faster win.

- Gandalf no longer shifts from not being animated to a default animation, he will start with a default animation.


--- VPK ---

- The map will now display what version it is in lobby, in games-in-progress list, in the map name in console and the vpk itself.

- Added fanart of -Helm's Deep- Reborn made by Action-Crab.
"Its completely hand drawn. I colored it with wooden crayons and promarker permanent pens. Then I scanned it, did some color correction and with paint I put the helms deep text." - Action-Crab
The fanart can also be seen in-game in the armory, it disappears once the battle starts.

- The addon description now contains useful information. Moved all "credits" from the addon description to a readme file inside the VPK.

- Added an addon image.

- Optimized almost everything in the VPK. Deleted unnecessary files and codes. Deleted advertising of campaigns and other maps (I did NOT delete advertising of different servers and the fanart of the LOTR campaign which was also made by Action-Crab).
In short: Faster download, faster loading, reduced chance of the vpk crashing, faster setup on dedicated servers, some errors in console are fixed and servers can easier keep up with the high amount of enemy NPCs that spawn.


--- BUG/GLITCH/STUCK FIXES ---

- Tanks and other enemies should no longer get stuck in the doorway (and suicide) when they are trying to enter the keep. In addition, i've fixed a few random locations where common infected always got stuck.

- Zombies are no longer immune to dmg for a few seconds when you are about to charge out.

- Common infected will now die if they are inside the armory when the horses go rampage.

- Fixed a few issues with the bots (Bots would freeze or not be able to help incapped teammates in some areas etc.).

- A total of 5 GAMEBREAKING bugs have been dealt with:
1. Fixed tanks punching humans on the fall back stair, causing humans to "bounce up" to buggy areas.

2. Fixed smokers tongue causing humans to get stuck after the burning hay at the weapon stack.

3. Fixed chargers pushing survivors up the fall back stairs before the survival timer hits (approx.) 7mins and bug the map.

4. Fixed the stables area not teleporting players after you geared up for 20 seconds. when the charge event is about to take place.

5. Fixed players getting stuck in the stables area when getting resurrected with a defib.


--- VISUAL IMPROVEMENTS ---

- Fixed a lot of texture flickering issues.

- Improved brightness/lightning on the second floor inside the keep.

- Changed parts of the mountain (texture) surrounding the fortress with a texture that doesn't have "edges".

- You will no longer see enemy heads sticking through the door before charging out at the charge event.

- You will no longer witness an automatic break of the Deeping wall edge and other objects when you look down right before you get teleported to the armory from the tower.

- Gandalf's fireworks, the visuals and sounds are now synchronized.

- Fixed a lot of clipping issues throughout the map. There are still some areas where enemy NPCs and players appear to be floating(!). I am well aware of this.

- Improvements for spectators (the LOTR characters appear and disappear more realistic etc.).

- ... and lots of minor tweaks and improvements - the map is a must try!