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WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/13/2013 3:20:45 AM   
GaryChildress

 

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The purpose of this thread is to help average modders better understand the workings of AE and how to mod the game by coming up with a modding guide or FAQ. Hopefully this thread will ultimately lead to the creation of such a guide. I've seen such things for other games, and I think with WITP's complexity it would be nice to come up with something similar for AE.

As it stands now there are some truly mysterious fields in the editor which the majority of us do not understand. Given the fact that the AE team is sworn to secrecy it is up to the rest of us to crack the code.

In this first post I will ultimately try to come up with a table of contents and perhaps links to posts that satisfy different parts of the table. Not sure yet but this first post will be a work in progress.

I'll kick off the project with the first post after the OP.

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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/13/2013 4:07:03 AM   
Commander Stormwolf

 

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first note is to indicate to any prospective modders
that there are limits to any parameters that are being changed
(devices, etc)

example: tried modding a submarine to carry 12 torpedo tubes

result: message: submarine experiences malfunction during firing

apparently 8 torpedo tubes is the maximum

not just the indicators in the editor, but in the game engine itself

not certain if this comment is useful,
but it is a small detail that may be unknown to the common player

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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/13/2013 4:10:02 AM   
Commander Stormwolf

 

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another note is that it is difficult at first to find the AC / ship ART folders

on the upside, there is plenty of existing extra art out there to include models like the G5N shinzan, G8N Renzan, Ki-64, etc.



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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/13/2013 4:12:10 AM   
Commander Stormwolf

 

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finally all that can be recommended is to frequently "sandbox" any changes

lots of free slots to save, just start a head-to-head match and set up trials
to test if your results are within reason, or so that any bugs can be identified

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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/13/2013 4:14:19 AM   
GaryChildress

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Commander Stormwolf


first note is to indicate to any prospective modders
that there are limits to any parameters that are being changed
(devices, etc)

example: tried modding a submarine to carry 12 torpedo tubes

result: message: submarine experiences malfunction during firing

apparently 8 torpedo tubes is the maximum

not just the indicators in the editor, but in the game engine itself

not certain if this comment is useful,
but it is a small detail that may be unknown to the common player


Many thanks Commander Stormwolf!!

This is exactly the type of information that is of extreme value. This is exactly what I'm looking for and will help me flesh out some rules and "dos" and "don'ts" for the Guide. Keep them coming!! Right now I'm working on the first rough draft or skeleton for the first part of the guide - dealing with the device tab. I'll post my progress as soon as I can.

< Message edited by Gary Childress -- 9/13/2013 4:15:04 AM >


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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/13/2013 4:54:49 AM   
GaryChildress

 

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Where to begin?

The logical place to begin would appear to be with the Device tab. Within that there is a manifold problem. Some fields contain radically different types of data relative to what type of device it is in reference to. For instance, the "range" field seems to apply differently to guns than it does to, say, Depth Charges (just to provide one example of the problem we are facing). So some fields may have more than one type of data associated with them. Therefore, in providing a guide to each field we will need to determine how each device fits into the schemata of each field.

So let's begin with the device tab. The logical next step is to look at the first field in that tab. So let's begin there:

THE DEVICE TAB


Name: This is the name of the device and poses no special problem as far as I can tell. There is a 20 character limit to how long a name can be.
Type: This is the type of device. Since there is a drop down menu of the types, this field doesn't appear to be especially problematic either. (feel free to interject if I'm wrong)
Upgrade: this is the upgrade path of the device. Again no special problem that I see here.
Side: This is the side which may use the device. The values are Japanese, Allied, or Both. The vast majority of devices are associate with either one side or the other. Only a few devices appear to be usable by both sides simultaneously. Industry, support and engineer squads and a few standard bombs seem to be the only devices that have a "side" of "both".
Available: denotes the month and year the device becomes available. NOTE: Here it would be useful to know what the maximum and minimum values for "available" can be. A few other things to note: if a device is set to an availability date before the beginning of the scenario, it will appear on the first turn. If a device is set to be available the date of the first turn, it will appear at the end of the first turn. Once a device becomes available it will begin to populate the device pool according to either the build rate or be produced by factories.
End Date: denotes the month and year the device will stop being produced by factories or through the build rate.
Can Build: NOTE: Here's my first hurdle. What does "can build" mean? Can anyone clarify?
Build Rate: Denotes the monthly rate at which the device is produced. A build rate of 30 would mean that the number of the device in the pool increases by a rate of one per day. A build rate of 15 would mean that it increases by one every two days. And so on.
Pool: is the number of that particular device which are available in the pool at the start of the scenario.
Range: The value for range depends to some degree upon the device type. For guns, range is the maximum range per thousand yards of the gun. For depth charges it is maximum depth in feet. for radar range is ____________
Accuracy: Here is where the fun begins...obviously accuracy is the accuracy of the weapon. Here is the first point in our guide where some discussion will be necessary before proceeding further. Things to note: The highest value for accuracy in stock scen 1 is 168 for squid and hedgehog. The lowest value is 1 for several large artillery pieces in the game. The higher the accuracy the more chance the weapon will score a hit. The lower the accuracy the less chance. Accuracy for naval devices is broken into separate value groups for surface combat weapons, AA weapons and ASW weapons.
Penetration: The maximum armor in mm the weapon can penetrate. This value seems to apply mostly to guns. Although air search radars have a "penetration" value, usually of 500, this value is not utilized at all by the air search radars and may be a left over from the original WITP.
Effect: The amount of damage caused by the device. Every device except for industry items and squads seems to have a value for effect. For guns and bombs effect is typically the weight of the shell in pounds. Note: Machine guns and automatic cannons appear to be an exception to this rule. Possibly the effect for automatic weapons is a function of weight of ammo expended in a certain time frame. The function of effect for radars is unclear.
Ceiling: Ceiling generally seems to apply exclusively to AA and DP guns. Non AA or DP weapons will have a value of 0 here. This value is simply the maximum height to which the weapon can engage aircraft targets.
Armor: Mostly pertains to AFVs and some CD guns, and is supposedly armor in millimeters, though it is unclear to me how the numbers for AFVs are arrived at. Is it some sort of function of just frontal armor, an amalgamation of armor from different sides?
Dud Rate: This value is almost exclusive to torpedoes, although the 3inch Trench Mortar has a dud rate of 70 as well. The dud rate is the percent chance of a hit not exploding. The higher the percent the greater the chance the weapon will not explode when a hit is scored.
Anti-Armor:
Anti-Soft:
Load Cost:
Alt Device:
Alt Use:
Static:
A-Bomb:
Cannon is MG:
Shore Party:


EDIT: I'm changing the colors. Red represents a field that still needs some demystification and blue represents a field that appears to be relatively demystified or otherwise clear in its purpose and values.



< Message edited by Gary Childress -- 9/14/2013 11:58:29 PM >


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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/13/2013 8:44:44 AM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Gary Childress

Penetration: The maximum armor in mm the weapon can penetrate. This value seems to apply mostly to guns though some radars have a "penetration" value, usually of 500. It is unclear to me what the 500 for the radars stands for.


Note that all air search radars have a "penetration" of 500
but surface search radars do not.

That means a new radar device should honor that convention
It probably means 500 is a code signal "this is air search mode"
not sure why it needs that in addition to the check box ?

It also means that a radar useful for both air and surface search
(it was once a category and many radars have a limited dual
function) must be modeled by two devices

as in Type ABC (SS)
and Type ABC (AS)

To help players know what a radar does I always put (AS) or (SS)
behind the name - unless it is something else - so an EW device
is (EW) etc - this usage meaning as a detection device, not as a
jammer


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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/13/2013 3:09:13 PM   
GaryChildress

 

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From: The Divided Nations of Earth
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quote:

ORIGINAL: el cid again




quote:

ORIGINAL: Gary Childress

Penetration: The maximum armor in mm the weapon can penetrate. This value seems to apply mostly to guns though some radars have a "penetration" value, usually of 500. It is unclear to me what the 500 for the radars stands for.


Note that all air search radars have a "penetration" of 500
but surface search radars do not.

That means a new radar device should honor that convention
It probably means 500 is a code signal "this is air search mode"
not sure why it needs that in addition to the check box ?

It also means that a radar useful for both air and surface search
(it was once a category and many radars have a limited dual
function) must be modeled by two devices

as in Type ABC (SS)
and Type ABC (AS)

To help players know what a radar does I always put (AS) or (SS)
behind the name - unless it is something else - so an EW device
is (EW) etc - this usage meaning as a detection device, not as a
jammer




Thanks for the clarification el cid. I've added this piece of info. I certainly hope you'll be a regular contributor to this thread.

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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/13/2013 8:50:54 PM   
Symon


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This has all been said before, but perhaps it makes sense to put it all in one thread for easier reference.

You seem to want to have everything for every algorithm. You don’t have the time. I ain’t got the inclination. So let’s just start with Naval things.

The ‘penetration’ of 500 for radars means nothing. In WiTP-1, it meant that the radar had an airsearch capability. In WiTP-AE there is an air search mode check box. Been like that since the original release. It is not looked at and you can put whatever you want in the field. Means nothing.

Accuracy: In the naval context, there’s three different combat modes – Nav, AA, and ASW. Each of these has different ways of using the Acc number for a device. One size does not fit all. The original release data has been extensively modified, in code and value, the history is as follows: The Nav combat algorithm hasn’t been tweaked, so Nav data is still valid, from the beginning. The AA combat algorithm was tweaked in v 1107 and certain data (for AAAW mostly) were tweaked in conformance. These are what you get in CompUpdate 1108r9. At the same time, michaelm added Sec_Vals to the mix for modding purposes. These are what you get when you consult the Sec_Val columns in a Babes scenario. So be very aware of the weapon Type you are looking at and evaluate your results accordingly.

The impact of directors and VT fuses IS IN THE CODE. Know people want to play with this, but there’s no way to do so. If you If you play with different guns with different directors and fuses, you will end up with radar guided smart shells. The game can’t handle it, so don’t do it. Stick to the basic ballistic properties and let the code work.

Penetration: The code has a pretty good Pen model. It accounts for distance and plunging v direct impact angles. Pen values, as a function of distance, are available everywhere. See Nathan Oakun. That’s where the game Pen values come from.


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Nous n'avons pas peur! Vive la liberté! Moi aussi je suis Charlie!
Yippy Ki Yay.

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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/13/2013 8:56:56 PM   
PaxMondo


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Symon

The impact of directors and VT fuses IS IN THE CODE. Know people want to play with this, but there’s no way to do so.

I think you mentioned this before.

You are correct, people (like me) would love to play with it, but it ain't gonna happen, so I moved on.

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Pax

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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/14/2013 12:59:14 AM   
GaryChildress

 

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From: The Divided Nations of Earth
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Symon

This has all been said before, but perhaps it makes sense to put it all in one thread for easier reference.

You seem to want to have everything for every algorithm. You don’t have the time. I ain’t got the inclination. So let’s just start with Naval things.

The ‘penetration’ of 500 for radars means nothing. In WiTP-1, it meant that the radar had an airsearch capability. In WiTP-AE there is an air search mode check box. Been like that since the original release. It is not looked at and you can put whatever you want in the field. Means nothing.

Accuracy: In the naval context, there’s three different combat modes – Nav, AA, and ASW. Each of these has different ways of using the Acc number for a device. One size does not fit all. The original release data has been extensively modified, in code and value, the history is as follows: The Nav combat algorithm hasn’t been tweaked, so Nav data is still valid, from the beginning. The AA combat algorithm was tweaked in v 1107 and certain data (for AAAW mostly) were tweaked in conformance. These are what you get in CompUpdate 1108r9. At the same time, michaelm added Sec_Vals to the mix for modding purposes. These are what you get when you consult the Sec_Val columns in a Babes scenario. So be very aware of the weapon Type you are looking at and evaluate your results accordingly.

The impact of directors and VT fuses IS IN THE CODE. Know people want to play with this, but there’s no way to do so. If you If you play with different guns with different directors and fuses, you will end up with radar guided smart shells. The game can’t handle it, so don’t do it. Stick to the basic ballistic properties and let the code work.

Penetration: The code has a pretty good Pen model. It accounts for distance and plunging v direct impact angles. Pen values, as a function of distance, are available everywhere. See Nathan Oakun. That’s where the game Pen values come from.



As always, thank you for your contribution and your attempts to enlighten those of us with more average intelligence. I'm hoping that when this thread has finished its course and fulfilled its purpose I will have a complete editor manual. Heck I'll donate it to the AE developers if they want to update the one in the game folder. I'll have to spruce my entries up a bit but that will hopefully come in time.

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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/15/2013 12:20:40 AM   
GaryChildress

 

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To complete the device page of the guide, these are some of the questions I have thus far that seem to beg answers:

1. What is the highest and lowest date possible for "Available" which will still function properly in game?
2. What is the highest and lowest date possible for "End date" which will still function properly in game?
3. What exactly does "Can Build" mean?
4. What does "range" mean for radars? It seems close to either miles or nautical miles and not thousands of yards.
5. How is "armor" calculated for AFVs? Anyone have a good guess, as I doubt the AE team will be able to reveal this.
6. What is the "Alt Device" check box for?
7. What is the "Alt Use" check box for?
8. What is the "Shore Party" box for? Does it mean the device transforms into an Elvis at a luau?

Thanks.

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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/20/2013 10:34:11 AM   
98ZJUSMC


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Great thread idea! I'm goofing around with a mod right now and trying to figure out what changes an LCU from Static to Deployable.

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RE: WITP: Modding and Editor Guide Project - 9/20/2013 1:42:43 PM   
PaxMondo


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Gary Childress

To complete the device page of the guide, these are some of the questions I have thus far that seem to beg answers:

1. What is the highest and lowest date possible for "Available" which will still function properly in game?
2. What is the highest and lowest date possible for "End date" which will still function properly in game?
3. What exactly does "Can Build" mean?
4. What does "range" mean for radars? It seems close to either miles or nautical miles and not thousands of yards.
5. How is "armor" calculated for AFVs? Anyone have a good guess, as I doubt the AE team will be able to reveal this.
6. What is the "Alt Device" check box for?
7. What is the "Alt Use" check box for?
8. What is the "Shore Party" box for? Does it mean the device transforms into an Elvis at a luau?

Thanks.

Gary,

Just a caveat, but refer back to John's earlier post: there are a large number of fields that can only be accessed via the .csv files. The editor does not fully support all of the new fields and there are a fair number.

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