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Ongoing redesign: start options/ini/ingame options[message #354656] Sun, 02 September 2018 18:09 Go to next message
Flugente

 
Messages:3461
Registered:April 2009
Location: Germany
We have a staggering amount of input data for the game. While this allows us to finetune the game to high degree, this can be more than a bit frightening.

One of my pet peeves is that options which control features are set in several locations:
  • Some options are set at the campaign start screen. They are stored in the savefiles and cannot be changed later on (apart from debugging or hex-editing).
  • Some options are set in the game options screen. They are read and written in the Profiles folder and are savegame-independent.
  • Most options are set in JA2_Options.ini or the myriad of other inis and xmls we have. They are savegame-independent.
We can further divide options into two types:
  • those that are used to set up savegame-stored data that cannnot be changed later on. This includes squad size, max number of team members, iron-man settings, long-term quest things... We could theoretically change the code so that all these can be altered as well (or we can already do so but don't want due to story-related reasons), but for now, let's just assume they cannot.
  • those that are used to control features that can be changed at any point in the game. This is the vast majority of options.
My pet peeve with this is that
  • we have options that set up savegame-stored data but are not set up at the campaign screen. As a result, changing them in the ini leaves us no choice but to throw an error (best example: MAX_NUMBER_PLAYER_MERCS in JA2_Options.ini).
  • we have options that can be changed at any point in time codewise (even ingame), but we cannot do so. Examples: Food, NCTH, improved interrupt system... half the start screen, really. As a result, if a player comes to the conclusion that he doesn't like the choice he made earlier, he has to start a new campaign or learn how to hack this.

Both things are bad and inconvenient. I aim to change that (whenever I have the energy to do so). To start with this, as of r8610 & GameDir r2442, the following options have been moved from the campaign start screen to JA2_Options.ini:
  • Max number of IMPs has been deleted as of r8622
  • Enemies drop all items (now DROP_ALL (Default: FALSE))
  • Merc Story Backgrounds (now BACKGROUNDS (Default: TRUE))
  • Food System (now FOOD (Default: FALSE))
  • Improved Interrupt System (now IMPROVED_INTERRUPT_SYSTEM (Default: TRUE))
  • Inventory Manipulation Costs AP (now INVENTORY_MANIPULATION_COSTS_AP (Default: FALSE))
  • New Chance to Hit System (now NCTH (Default: FALSE)) as of r8625
It now (r8610) looks like this:
https://i.imgur.com/tbgbmYE.png

I am fully aware that this might be controversial for some people. Though given that with most SCI releases there are options changed in the ini, I'm not that sure why adapting an existing campaign to a new ini should be an unusual effort.

As said, I will continue to move settings in this manner and will list these changes in this thread.

I am also aware that having some settings in the ini and some settings in DifficultySettings.xml is unusual. I've personally ranted more than a bit about that, no need to explain to me why you feel that is an odd design choice.

People who might want to complain about us having so many options everywhere might bear in mind that they are often the same people who request for more stuff to be externalised.

[Updated on: Sun, 30 September 2018 23:08]




You gotta wash your hands before picking up a baby. They can see the bacteria burning into their flesh.

If you want, you can donate to me. This will not affect how and what I code, and I will not code specific features in return. I will be thankful though.


Re: Ongoing redesign: start options/ini/ingame options[message #354813 is a reply to message #354656] Tue, 11 September 2018 02:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
kmoi

 
Messages:19
Registered:September 2013
Good,i like
Re: Ongoing redesign: start options/ini/ingame options[message #354901 is a reply to message #354813] Sat, 15 September 2018 19:38 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Parkan

 
Messages:451
Registered:April 2010
Location: Russia,Sevastopol

I hope in near future it will be possible to use more IMP mercs for example without editing mercprofiles.xml each new mod or each new big revision of 1.13...

Dreams,dreams.....



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Re: Ongoing redesign: start options/ini/ingame options[message #355191 is a reply to message #354901] Sun, 30 September 2018 23:03 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Flugente

 
Messages:3461
Registered:April 2009
Location: Germany
As of r8622, IMP slots are now purely defined by <Type>6</Type> in MercProfiles.xml. Removed MAX_IMP_CHARACTERS and IMP_XXX settings. That's right, we no longer have any IMP slot settings in MercProfiles.xml, all you need is to set which slot in principle can be an IMP slot and you can use it. I've taken the liberty of setting that on any other free slot in the trunk, which gives us ~29 possible IMP slots. big grin

This is the maximum liberty we can have with those slots. We have to define them somewhere. Why those slots weren't free to IMPs in the first place... no idea. It would have been possible in the old code as well (apart from the nonsensical max IMP at the starting screen I guess, which is now gone).

I briefly pondered also allowing slots with <Type>0</Type> to be IMPs - this would retroactively unlock those slots for IMPs in older saves - but for some reason I'm getting fragments of the xml-read profiles over unused slots in the savefile, so let's not go there for safety.



You gotta wash your hands before picking up a baby. They can see the bacteria burning into their flesh.

If you want, you can donate to me. This will not affect how and what I code, and I will not code specific features in return. I will be thankful though.


Re: Ongoing redesign: start options/ini/ingame options[message #355192 is a reply to message #355191] Sun, 30 September 2018 23:05 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Flugente

 
Messages:3461
Registered:April 2009
Location: Germany
Also ,as of r8625, NCTh is no longer a gamestart option, but is instead set on/off in the JA2_Options.ini (NCTH = TRUE (Default: FALSE))



You gotta wash your hands before picking up a baby. They can see the bacteria burning into their flesh.

If you want, you can donate to me. This will not affect how and what I code, and I will not code specific features in return. I will be thankful though.


Re: Ongoing redesign: start options/ini/ingame options[message #357632 is a reply to message #354656] Sun, 07 July 2019 18:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Job3y

 
Messages:10
Registered:March 2017
Playing revision 8673, but no arrows in the inventory/attachments option selection, so i'm stuck on old/old. Any way to fix that? Mine looks the same as that but doesn't have the arrows on the section i mentioned

Edit: Nevermind, changing resolution seemed to fix the problem.

[Updated on: Sun, 07 July 2019 22:04]

Re: Ongoing redesign: start options/ini/ingame options[message #357936 is a reply to message #354656] Wed, 21 August 2019 22:35 Go to previous messageGo to next message
RollinStoner
Messages:2
Registered:August 2019
Hi, I'm trying to find the options for food and DROP_ALL and FOOD ini options talked about in the OP, but aside from the tactical food options I cant seem to find anything I opened the Ja2_Options.INI but found it to be exactly the same as the options offered in the ini editor. I am also having a problem with the Drassen counterattack being insanely overpowered, despite the the amount of enemies on the tactical screen being limited to 32, i have faced 40 and 50+ enemies attacking Drassen Mine, I love a heroic last stand as much as the next guy, but i'd like to move on now lol

Maybe someone could help me properly understand the differences between the sci and normal 1.13 versions? i'm fairly new to this and had to follow clues on steam while trying to get the game to first play, then, play at a speed that wouldn't bore a snail. So i followed some instructions that got me JA2_1.13_FullRelease_English_7435.exe installer, followed by 7609 update for that, Then i installed the 8684 SCI revision over the top of that, aside from the change to the start game options screen and the ability to chose your IMP mercs gear, i think the main thing i've noticed is the additional xml files that aren't present in the 1.13 mod, like difficultysettings, disease amongst others. I found these looking for away to turn off reinforcements after the first time i got pounded at drassen (though i now understand that this is largely due to the massive counterattack, but still seems to be bugging with me since it can have over 40 enemies on my screen).

So, in summary i guess:

Can someone...

1)Help find the options for enemies dropping all items and turning on food requirements
2)Help me figure out why i am getting more than the 32 enemy limit (I have checked it in the editor and the ini itself)
3)Take pity on me and explain the main differences between standard 1.13 and the current revision i am on? (8684)

It may also be worth noting that i have a JA_28689 zip folder in my downloads with no idea where i got it from, though i am sure it was somewhere on this site, it only contains .exes for the game, expansion and editor, as well as a changelog.

Anyway, any answers to these questions would be greatly appreciated, this was one of my favourite games growing up and it amazing to see it still alive, well and better than ever. You people truly do the work of the gods
Re: Ongoing redesign: start options/ini/ingame options[message #357971 is a reply to message #357936] Mon, 26 August 2019 19:14 Go to previous messageGo to next message
CarsonBlackman

 
Messages:5
Registered:August 2019
I waited a couple days to see if any admins or devs responded. Since none have so far, I will give it a shot. If I'm wong somewhere, I hope someone will correct me. Here goes...
The primary difference between regular and sci-fi is the subterranean insects (Crepitus). If sci-fi is on, at some point they will infest one of your mines. The mine will shut down and stop producing income. To get rid of them you will have to go down into the mine, fight the workers, and kill the queen. If you don't, not only will you continue to lose the mine income, the Crepitus will start coming out at night and attacking the civilians, the militia, and your mercs. Morale will suffer, militia will die, they can become a real distraction, but it can also be a fun fight as you battle them in the mines and further down in their tunnels and caves below the mine. There are numerous posts dealing with more details on the mechanics of how this all works.
The the on / off toggle for food is the first selection in the Tactical Food Settings folder.
In the Tactical Difficulty Settings folder there is a selection labeled DROP ALL that toggles drop for all NPC's. There are additional selections for adjusting drop for other NPC's besides enemies.
Both can be changed with the INI Editor. If you are having trouble finding something, the INI Editor has a word search function. That was how I found what you needed. I knew they were there but the find function snaps you right to them.
The 32 enemies limit isn't a limit on how many can attack you at one time. It's quite possible to be attacked by several groups of enemies from different adjacent zones, and some of those groups can be larger than 32, some of the Queen's counterattacks are massive (yes, there can be more than one counterattack per game). It's more like an "attack throttle". It limits how many enemies can be in your zone at one time. If there are more than 32 enemies, the battle will open with 32 enemies attacking you, the remainder are reinforcements. As you kill them off, the reinforcements will appear on the map edges. All battles are resolved this way. Depending on your game settings, it's entirely possible to see huge groups (60+) of enemies on the strategic map, but there will never be more than the 32 attackers (or whatever limit you set) in your zone at one time. There are several options in the .ini files to reduce or eliminate the counterattacks. Do a word search in the INI Editor for "counterattack" and they will be highlighted.
There have been so many fabulous additions to 1.13 that trying to explain them all is just too much for any single post. Most of us learned about them as they developed and didn't have to try and digest them all in one gulp. Best advice I can give is to just dive in and start playing. Use the Pit's form as a reference library and look stuff up when it happens and you don't understand it or can't get past it. Part of the fun (at least for me) was figuring this all out.
Re: Ongoing redesign: start options/ini/ingame options[message #357976 is a reply to message #357936] Tue, 27 August 2019 21:42 Go to previous messageGo to next message
edmortimer

 
Messages:1213
Registered:January 2015
Location: Home Free
The massive counter-attack at Drassen (and other cities) is now intended to be a -massive- counter-attack. Therefore it necessitates different strategies to overcome than in the past. You can game the AI by retreating and waiting for the forces to split up again - and then pick off the various groups as they leave, or just re-enter Drassen when the enemy has moved most of their forces out. Or . . . you can use all the weapons and tactics at your disposal - such as setting up minefields and herding all your militia into optimum position (which can be a real pain, but I usually group them all in one isolated spot with a lot of cover so they survive the first turn intact). It is a tough situation - but it is designed to be tough.




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Re: Ongoing redesign: start options/ini/ingame options[message #357977 is a reply to message #354656] Tue, 27 August 2019 21:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
RollinStoner
Messages:2
Registered:August 2019
Ok so it's intended to exceed the enemies per screen option when they first assault Drassen? I figured it probably was because it seemed an outrageous bug to have only been experienced by myself lol.

Thanks for the tips, I'm not quit used to many of the new features but I'm getting there, is there anywhere all the information on the current features held? Like a 1.13 user's guide or anything? I've been googling things like radio operator and how to get clothes for covert operations and getting by,but I'm mostly learning features exist by accident. Loving every minute of it right enough, strolling around town in disguise was something I always thought should have been a thing and now it is 😁
Re: Ongoing redesign: start options/ini/ingame options[message #357983 is a reply to message #357977] Wed, 28 August 2019 19:34 Go to previous message
CarsonBlackman

 
Messages:5
Registered:August 2019
I think there may be some kind of limit in the original code that prevents more than 32 enemies from appearing at the same time. The 1.13 devs apparently found a way to get around that limit and still allow the massive attacks to happen. All of that stuff is way above my pay grade.
32 at a time is plenty to deal with anyway, and the way it works can often add to the wave effect. The reinforcements appear at the same rate that you kill them off. Killing them faster means the reinforcements arrive faster. If they are coming from more than one zone it also forces you to watch your flanks. You can get massive battles in other ways too. Pay attention to enemy groups in zones adjacent to the one you attack. Depending on garrison restrictions; all, some, or none of them may join in the defense, arriving on the map edge from their zone.
Most of what you need to know is right here in The Pit. The sub-forum you are in right now, "Flugente's Magika Workshop", has threads devoted to many of the new features. I would start there. Many of the discussions are quite lengthy, but Flugente's original post almost always explains things very well. If there are any gray areas or bugs, they usually get cleared up in the follow up discussion.
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