WC4 Mod For Homeworld 2 In The Works (June 5, 2006)

Specks88

Spaceman
Awesome thanks man. I've played Homeworld since '99, and WC since I was 6 (about 17 years now), and to combine the two is a ridiculous dream come true, to play out my own scenarios.

It'd be amazing to have this project not just cover IV, but the whole universe one day...I don't know much about modeling but I'll support any way I can =)

Great work guys. Really.
 

L.I.F.

Vice Admiral
^^ If you want to learn modding, try to download the mod Point Defense Systems V 6.5, IIRC it's divided into folders and files, so you can tinker with it and learn the trade. Also, the reference to understand how to mod those files is called "the Karos Graveyard", it's a comprehensive wiki on the workings of the mods. If you manage to understand how the SOB groups work, then the next step for the game would be those limited ammunition, meaning you'd need to get your bombers back to the carrier after a few runs, so killing the enemy carrier would take out the entire offensive capability of a fleet.

But then, a LOT of work would be needed on the AI coding to make sure the bots understand that too... X_X
 

LeHah

212 Squadron - "The Old Man's Eyes And Ears"
I really wish czacen would come back. This mod was amazing to play in MP and he had more ideas to implement...
 

L.I.F.

Vice Admiral
Yeah, he did a really good work implementing everything, from the models (and not only creating them, but doing all the work to get them useable for HW2, the AI, the balance, the sound integration... You don't often see such beauties of a mod created by one guy alone...
 

L.I.F.

Vice Admiral
...And this was the Beta.
X_X: What would have been the final version? Maybe a complete retelling of WC4 on a RTS viewpoint... I mean, that would be possible, you'd need to create "elite" units of 1-fighter squadron for each named character, and it would then be possible to give them different fight tactics (there are files describing each fighter maneuver in the game, so Maniac could have his own style, for example). Then, you'd "build" your squadron at the beginning of the mission, and move to the checkpoints, where enemies would be waiting, and campaign-style scripts activated. Just daydreaming here, even if the game engine allows it.
 

LeHah

212 Squadron - "The Old Man's Eyes And Ears"
Nothing like that. czacen had no plans for single player story or the like. What I remember us discussing were things like how to better implement the Marine Shuttles, how to better "randomize" the BW ships (we had agreed that you needed to have the WC4 UBW ships but also wanted to show the fleet was outdated and to put in random "outdated" fighters from WC1/2) and how to do the jump system as it works in WC (basically, you'd have to make a run for jump buoys instead of just jumping from wherever).

There was brief talk about making custom maps based on WC missions but neither of us were familiar with that process.
 

L.I.F.

Vice Admiral
But, didn't he make some 3D models of pilots for a cinematic scene or something like that IIRC? It was a long time ago, so I could be wrong...

For jump buoys, you'd need some unkillable buoys (or killable, that would make destroying them a strategic decision?) you'd need to capture before using. I really should look back at the campaign files, some nice tricks are probably hidden in those.
 

LeHah

212 Squadron - "The Old Man's Eyes And Ears"
The 3D Models (and my memory isn't great on this) were for an unrelated project, I think.

We talked A LOT about the jump system in WC being retained in this mod. the problem is to do it would require a major overhaul of internal commands with the game. This wasn't just redesigning a carrier mesh and dropping it in; this was telling the game how to do a basic movement command.

We did talk about "capturing" jump nodes but I think it was thrown out? I vaguely remember the problem of what would happen if a player who only had one node attempted to jump?

(Please keep in mind, all the work was his alone. I was simply a playtester at best.)
 

L.I.F.

Vice Admiral
Well, in the 4th mission of the game, you have three Vaygr jumpbuoys linked to enemy forward bases, used by the enemy to send reinforcments to attack you. If you capture one of the buoys, you can use it to send units back to the other buoy, even if the arrival point is under enemy control. So, as a game mechanic, I don't think it'll cause a lot of problems (but I'm far from being an expert, I just tinker from time to time). The hardest point, IMO, would be to make sure that, at the beginning of the game, the jump buoys network is already set up.
 

TonViper

Rear Admiral
Well, in the 4th mission of the game, you have three Vaygr jumpbuoys linked to enemy forward bases, used by the enemy to send reinforcments to attack you. If you capture one of the buoys, you can use it to send units back to the other buoy, even if the arrival point is under enemy control. So, as a game mechanic, I don't think it'll cause a lot of problems (but I'm far from being an expert, I just tinker from time to time). The hardest point, IMO, would be to make sure that, at the beginning of the game, the jump buoys network is already set up.

It's a pity we never managed to finish the new gamemode we were working on in the Babylon 5 HW2 mod. It would have featured more or less everything needed to set up something like that in a skirmish mission.

As it is now, only the most basic framework of coding was done when our coder CnlPepper dropped out from the modding scene due to RL issues. Myself, I have a hard time staying focused on a task like that if I'm the only one working on it, so I haven't been able to continue that process on my own.

It didn't help either that I lost most of my HW2 modding tools in a hard-disk crash.

I also still have that half-finished Excalibur fighter model lying around somewhere that I never got around to finishing. I guess I got too ambitious. I wanted to make it use the new shaders, but I was doing something wrong, and never managed to figure out what it was.
 

L.I.F.

Vice Admiral
Ouch. I won't be able to help there, I've never worked on 3D models (rather my grandfather the Ace in this domain), only on simple text editing to get ships, weapons and such to do my bidding. But even then, I had problems with the limited ammunition... By the way, do you know how the SOB groups work? If so, I could be interested to learn a thing or two from you.
 

TonViper

Rear Admiral
I do have a little theoretical knowledge on the subject, but I haven't really done much work in that area. If you have any specific questions about it, I'll be happy to see if I can help.
 

L.I.F.

Vice Admiral
OK, I'm not really into that for now, but the main problem I had was to modify the skirmish games in order to make the game check periodically for fighters docked. In that case, corvettes, since czacen had the great idea of putting all the bombers in that category, which simplify everything. Once a SOB group is created with all the corvettes currently sitting inside a dock, the game ought to repair a specific subsystem, which is, in some WIP versions of mine, holding the torpedoes. The ammunition system work as follows: there are two nearly identical launchers in the subs, but one will not throw the munition far enough and it will crash on launch, dealing some zone damage, thus damaging the subsystem (this being called "Torpedo Ammunition" and the player can click on it to see how much ammo his/her flight has left), while the true torp is flying away, ready to vent a capship. This subs doesn't regenerate manually, and, once knocked out, doesn't fire any longer.

But when the corvette docks, the subs isn't repaired by the carrier, so I have to select all those docked ships and do that specific action, which is linked to SOB groups, if some advice given on Tanis was right.
 

TonViper

Rear Admiral
I see. I'll look into it and see if I can work out some code that selects the ships you want.

*edit*
So far, what I have seems to make it possible to replace the damaged subsystem as a ammo counter with an actual ammo counter in the files. I'm not sure if it would be possible to add said ammo count to the UI though. I'll look into it, assuming I ever get the initial code working. I've always been better at modifying the purpose of existing code than writing new code from scratch.

I'd love to see how far you got with the code. What's the download link to your most updated version of the mod? I'm not sure what version of the mod I've been working with so far.

Also, which ship classes were you planning on giving reloadable missiles like that? I'd need to add each class name to a table to make it work.
 

L.I.F.

Vice Admiral
I'll need a few days to access the files, since I just moved across all the country and my main computer isn't unpacked yet (been a crazy week with all the final exams). Anyway, the uploaded versions don't have the ammo tinkerings, only stable things like missile defence. I don't remember if I uploaded the version where I got a "hierarchy" of cloakings. By that, I mean that I put specific values on the sensors of all fighters and ships to make it that, for example, Arrows can detect all type of cloaked ships at medium range, Lances at close range, and Excaliburs can see their counterparts at close range. As soon as my comp' is back in business, I'm going to look through the latest files I have (haven't worked on them for 18 months or so, RL been keeping me busy) and send you the specific codes by PM, OK?
 

TonViper

Rear Admiral
I'll need a few days to access the files, since I just moved across all the country and my main computer isn't unpacked yet (been a crazy week with all the final exams). Anyway, the uploaded versions don't have the ammo tinkerings, only stable things like missile defence. I don't remember if I uploaded the version where I got a "hierarchy" of cloakings. By that, I mean that I put specific values on the sensors of all fighters and ships to make it that, for example, Arrows can detect all type of cloaked ships at medium range, Lances at close range, and Excaliburs can see their counterparts at close range. As soon as my comp' is back in business, I'm going to look through the latest files I have (haven't worked on them for 18 months or so, RL been keeping me busy) and send you the specific codes by PM, OK?

Still here and waiting, so whenever you're ready...
 
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