Dawn of Warhammer 40,000: Firestorm Over Kaurava

The definitive Table Top conversion mod for Dawn of War.
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 Post subject: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 12:04 pm 
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Taken from the other topic to avoid disrailing:
thudo wrote:
Conspiracy: they saw how too well DoW1 modding did and didn't want their IP threatened by content done by highly-skilled and unpaid artists. Regrettably, this is NOT relegated to Relic alone: the whole damn PC industry is being stacked this way with newer titles being less moddable than the last. Grrr...
Reality:

Games are much more complex than they used to be, and modders aren't always capable of picking up the pieces. Look at the quality of DoW 2 mods. The game has been out for a year, and there are a handful of ones that merit a second glance. This is not down to a lack of mod tools. This is down to it being harder to create models and textures for DoW 2, and thus people are uninspired. This is, of course, not helped by the general attitude that "mods are **** without new models and textures" that seems to pervade the DoW modding community (and perhaps others, I wouldn't know).

Now, on Relic's side. They released a full set of mod tools for DoW 1. Yay for us. And what did we do?

"Baaaaaaaaaaaw Attribute Editor is ****." (this attitude got so strong Corsix went and made his own Mod Studio to help modders)

"Baaaaaaaaaaaw ModTools keeping on crashing" - when it turns out the modders have followed basic instructions wrong in the first place.

Relic must have looked at RelicNews (then their premier fansite) and sighed. People were asking the same basic questions again and again, the moderating team didn't appear to give a **** about the modding sections (they still don't appear to, though recent work has restored my faith), thus important "basic" questions and answered weren't stickied in a Q & A thread. Instead we had a Tutorials subforum which newbies, once again, fail to search through before asking retardedly basic questions.

Is this the kind of community Relic want to go out of their way to help? This is aside from the number of egotistical modders that have gone of their rockers in the past (not referring to MK or anybody here, I'm more on about Zany Reaper and/or other people way back in modding history) as well as the teams that seem to split up/fall out every other week.

Finally, harking back to my first point. Games are much more complex to modify than they used to be. Gone are the days of Alpha Centauri when an entire race's graphics were kept on a single .png file. Going are the days of DoW when you needed a 3k poly model with a pair of diffuse maps to add a new unit. In are the days of models with numerous parts, diffuse, normal, dirt and specular layer textures, and games that have ties to legally-restricted software such as Scaleform GFX. Relic isn't unique in this regard, as Thudo pointed out.

So guys, apologies that this turned into a bit of a walloftext, but it needed saying. Read this, and think before you bash on Relic's attitude to modding. Look at yourself first, ask yourself what you can do. If you can't do anything, don't complain. Those that can do things (i.e. the modders), refer to the rest of my points.

Thanks for reading.

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 12:36 pm 
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let's just say that Epic Games (Unreal Engine), Crytek (CryEngine) and Valve (Source Engine) as well as the oh so terrible EA (SAGE) offer amazing Mod Tools and there are a shitload of amazing mods for their games. Their ModTools are

a) good
b) easy to use
c) there are big communities around them with a lot of good tutorials
d) the publishers themself offer very good tutorials too

And these are some of the best Engines there are out there.

Yes they are complex. But DoW Modding is complex too if you do it correctly. Take a look at Compilers Inquisition Mod or the Witchhunters Mod.

All in all modding is something for the pros. if you don't have the skills and you don't have the patience to learn, then the ModTools can be as good as possible, you still won't be able to throw out quality stuff.

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 12:43 pm 
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<3 Finally someone knowledgeable says this out loud :) Perhaps this should end up on the DoW2 forums as a sticky just to shut the rabble up? Not that I'm sure it would help with that community >.> :lol:

Oh and just to mock the rest of the buch I (who am so lost on modding as one can be) realised what has been said here long ago :P

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 12:43 pm 
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There are great modding tools for really hard games (as in: complicated and hard to mod). DOW2 has no excuse for decent modding tools, aside from the community complaning about the tools when they do come.
Relic can give us modding tools because other companies with comparable games can also do it.

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 12:51 pm 
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Quote:
Not that I'm sure it would help with that community >.> :lol:
well, the great dilemma of the entire gaming community. 90% of the people on gaming forums are 14yo (and sometimes even adult) stupid bitches. this is not only the case for RelicNews. And the companies know that. they make money with these people. And they are smart enough to ignore their stupid ramblings.

And yes, sorry but Relics AE was ****. That must have been the shittiest tool I've ever seen.

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 1:01 pm 
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what gorbs first post describes is all very very true -

i wish there was more support & stuff offerd to keen modders & such of dow but many of relics 40k fanbase are very young - to be very honest i was amazed to find a pocket of 40k modders who were older and more mature and understood the true nature of 40k.

if relic suply advances in modding technology and availability they would be supplying it to an extremely tiny audience (or to an a group of 14 year old who would rarther say f**k it and go onto the next game) - so i for one am grateful and track what ever happens on this mod with great awe - because if this modding team ever falls apart (god or whatever you believe in forbid) i doubt there will ever be such a decicated/ educated team that fills their shoes

so all modding tutorials & tips should be copied and saved asap - because such detailed information is hard to come by - and all it really takes is a bit of time and effort & a good manner of reasonable dedication (something hard to find with general lazyness & life commitments)

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 1:40 pm 
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And yes, sorry but Relics AE was ****. That must have been the shittiest tool I've ever seen.

what? its an absolute brilliant tool. the only thing that was bad was the loading.

if you just sat there waiting for half an hour, then you should of watched tv or read a book in the mean time :lol:

when it does load (and relic added the option to load certain files remember) it makes coding big mods so much easier than what dow2 has now through text editors and crap which a lot of other similar games have.

AE is still better than Corsix modstudio in some respects simply because of the inheritance and metadata.

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 5:13 pm 
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Patman42 wrote:
All in all modding is something for the pros. if you don't have the skills and you don't have the patience to learn, then the ModTools can be as good as possible, you still won't be able to throw out quality stuff.
Of course :) That is what I was trying to say, at least partially. The people who moan and complain often lack the skills to do anything in the first place. This is, of course, not saying there aren't plenty of people out there with real talent, who often just mod as a fun diversion for their real job (and don't want a full-time job in games design/creation).

r.e. the other companies. EA, Valve, Epic . . . all large companies with huge amounts of money and developers to pursue side projects. Thus, decent quality mod tools can be expected. Crytek started something of a new trend - new studio releasing quality tools soon after release . . . I really want this idea to stick. S2 games, a small company developing Heroes of Newerth, a DotA (if you don't know what it is, Google it) clone, also seems to be following this line of thought.

Don't get me wrong, I'd love it if Relic turned round and released mod tools. I've questioned some senior ex-DoW 1 devs on the subject myself. This thread was made to clear up misconceptions such as Wisdom's (which I shall correct below).

And finally, Pat, r.e. the WH:AS and IDH mods . . . they're nothing fantastic. Some of the artwork is rather good, however the WH:AS mod paid something to do the texture work, and as such he counts as a paid professional and not a modder. The mods themselves, beyond the artwork, didn't really push any boundaries.

Wisdom wrote:
There are great modding tools for really hard games (as in: complicated and hard to mod). DOW2 has no excuse for decent modding tools, aside from the community complaning about the tools when they do come.
Relic can give us modding tools because other companies with comparable games can also do it.
You're really beginning to tick me off with your constant Relic bashing. At least Onard has the sense to give up with an argument when he's lost. You persist, time and time again.

Firstly, your argumentative style. Examples of games that are hard to mod with great modding tools, please. Secondly, your facts. The community complaining and putting out rubbish (yes, there are plenty of rubbish mods) is a good excuse, especially when you consider that even if the devs wish to create mod tools, the boardroom execs have to give permission as it would be a project that would comprise of both time and investment.

Now, I know Thudo would say the boardroom guys have it in for us, but hey. They're in that job to make money. They don't want to lose money. That's human nature for you; you always want more of a good thing. Thus, if there are only a few decent mods floating around, and a shitty halfassed community that can't be bothered to figure anything out themselves (remember Corsix was the only real person, aside from Cucc and Gniarf, to come up with anything for the DoW 1 modding scene - that I know of), it makes absolutely no financial sense to

a) place further time and money into DoW 1 modding

and b) place even more time and money into DoW 2 modding, considering the complexity of the tools (the Worldbuilder *has* to run on Ultra settings, for example) and the legal requirements (Scaleform's IP).

Horus wrote:
AE is still better than Corsix modstudio in some respects simply because of the inheritance and metadata.
That is true . . . I do like what you've done with expanding the MetaData to improve AE functionality, but you do know inheritance works just as well (as does MetaData, however I haven't screwed with it myself) with good ol' Notepad and Corsix's LUA Burner (basically a small tool that simply burns LUA/NIL files to RGD).

@ Randometh. I might at some point, but us mods can't sticky threads anymore so it'd just vanish off of the front page of whatever subforum I post it in. That, and it's physically impossible to get facts through the heads of the morons on that forum.

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 5:45 pm 
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but you do know inheritance works just as well (as does MetaData, however I haven't screwed with it myself) with good ol' Notepad and Corsix's LUA Burner (basically a small tool that simply burns LUA/NIL files to RGD).


actually that method is just as bad, as you have to go through each file and change stuff when they have different stats and extension data.

with the AE you can reset all the data before hand or make the inherited files have the same data as the parent with 2-3 simple clicks, so when you change the parent file all the children files update too.

Quote:
Now, I know Thudo would say the boardroom guys have it in for us, but hey. They're in that job to make money. They don't want to lose money. That's human nature for you; you always want more of a good thing. Thus, if there are only a few decent mods floating around, and a shitty halfassed community that can't be bothered to figure anything out themselves (remember Corsix was the only real person, aside from Cucc and Gniarf, to come up with anything for the DoW 1 modding scene - that I know of), it makes absolutely no financial sense to


see the thing is, you can't really make a decent or "good" mod without the ability to add models to the game. because relic hasn't released the tools to do that for what ever reason, of course your going to get bad mods. a code mod isn't really anything special for long and most people will agree. at least with dow40k 2 im changing the campaign but that wont keep people interested for long either.

as for making money, relic should know from experience that having a mod scene can pay dividends, after all look at dow and homeworld. even if mods arent public knowledge to most people, there's still a big percentage that has told people about the various mods floating around and people do buy the game just for mods. im sure there's a few people that's bought dow just for FoK out there somewhere :lol:

and why is everyone bashing relic? sure i call them failic every now and then but its likely THQ as well :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 5:49 pm 
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r.e. the other companies. EA, Valve, Epic . . . all large companies with huge amounts of money and developers to pursue side projects. Thus, decent quality mod tools can be expected.


yeah, I'm not saying we need mod tools for eeeevery frickin game. but when you develop an engine such as the essence engine which has the potential to be the ultimate shizzel in the RTS genre you could think about ModTools. and as Horus said, Relic + THQ = not that small.

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2010 6:07 pm 
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@ Horus: "boardroom execs" prolly incorporates THQ as well - that's the limit of their involvement, however. What I was trying to say is that we shouldn't blame Relic, and especially not for the wrong reasons.

r.e. not using AE - AE takes a horrendous amount of time to load, and unlike some people I don't have a great deal of spare time. In the time AE takes to load I can write the code for a basic functional race; and that's also dependant on whether the AE crashes or not. Certain modding errors can cause it to crash, and not having enough RAM also causes it to crash.

Let's not mention the using Notepad is fine and dandy, especially if you set up inheritance properly. You barely have to make any changes after setting up all the basic files. The problem with this for modding DoW is you kinda have redo Relic's code from the ground up - if you're adding in new races or creating a total conversion (which I am doing in both cases), then you can utilise inheritance and a decent amount of NIL files to make updating the mod incredibly easy.

@ Patman: I was directly comparing those companies to Relic/THQ. THQ has been struggling financially recently, and Relic is a rather small developer. Those facts do not add up favourably when it comes to persuading executives to spare money of side-projects for the fans.

And honestly, I think modders overestimate the impact of mods on the sales of Dawn of War. Other games (such as Warcraft 3) might have modifications that impacted upon sales . . . but not a lot of people buy games solely for DoW mods. A few may do, but a few pounds (sterling) here and there is less than a raindrop in a lake in terms of revenue.

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2010 6:37 am 
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Horus wrote:
im sure there's a few people that's bought dow just for FoK out there somewhere :lol:


I can safely say I've goten three people to buy soulstorm when I told them about FoK porting. ;)

I'm certain I'm one of the stupid population that can't really get the hang of modding. However in my case it's more the lack of experience and free time but I digress(sp?). I fully agree that companies don't make much profit from allowing modding, but they maintain a larger fanbase. ;D I would've given up DoW long ago if not for you guys, so here here to FoK!! :P

Anyway I should probably leave before I get yelled at. . . :?

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2010 1:07 pm 
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Opinions are always welcome, Des. It's nice to see you bought a version of the game for a mod, even though I said it doesn't affect anything in the larger scheme of things . . . . as a modder it's good to see a mod recognised so much it makes people spend money on it.

:)

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2010 1:26 pm 
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Patman42 wrote:
Quote:
And yes, sorry but Relics AE was ****. That must have been the shittiest tool I've ever seen.


A piece of advice is to stay away from the M2TW then ;D

It's ALL done in notepad, Syntax is shitty, No Inheritance, while referencing 16 different files, and the scripting to balance is hard as hell, as even shifting a mountain 2 places on a map will **** up the AI so badly it breaks the game to limiting the AI to a single bottleneck yet leave wide open borders without a single patrol, fort or defended settlement. And there's NOTHING you can do about it.

At least adding in new units etc is handy.

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 Post subject: Re: DoW 2 Moddability, and the conspiracies thereof
PostPosted: Fri Jan 15, 2010 12:17 am 
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well, seems like it possible to have WS vs WS melee combat too if im correct and the mothod i use works XD.

if it does, then awesome!

also the code isn't as restrictive compared to the old engine as such.

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