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[Mod] New Refinements (v4?) beta release

subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
edited February 2017 in BGII:EE Mods
So, I have delved into the classic Refinements mod, hacked it up, and made separate components for each class. In the hopes that it will be easier to combine with other mods that change HLAs, like Rogue Rebalancing and Faiths & Powers.

I have massaged the code until it installs on BG2EE, and it seems to install fine. I have NOT extensively playtested it. So, I will give you guys the link and you can do the playtesting! :wink:

Update to 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.8 0.10! It includes:
- install HLAs on a class-by-class basis
- patches HLA tables instead of overwriting them
- patches HLA tables of mod kits in addition to base kits
- specific compatibility with RR HLAs and simplified install order (RR, then Refinements)
- the Sword Angel works in EE games

https://github.com/UnearthedArcana/refinements/releases

This is actually starting to look pretty complete. Cheers, and good luck!

Post edited by subtledoctor on
AedaninethGrammarsaladCahirAKrugBierIchigoRXCAbelJuliusBorisovSo_LoWelminsterPteranKerthalmf2112trinitDemivrgvsdib
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Comments

  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    edited March 2016
    ...crickets...

    Man, I thought people would be more excited for this.

    Anyway, don't use this version, I've already identified some bugs (e.g. Blade and Shapeshifter both need the Use Scrolls engine, but it is only installed with the thief HLAs). Wait until 0.3 or whatever the next version is called.

    Post edited by subtledoctor on
  • CahirCahir Member, Moderator, Translator (NDA) Posts: 1,936
    @subtledoctor I'm super excited, just very busy with RL stuff to express my eternal gratitude. I think now it's only Virtue left and all the mods I need will be converted to EE :smile:

  • AKrugBierAKrugBier Member Posts: 102
    edited March 2016
    Super excited here, Refinements was a mod which I always used in my old BGT playthroughs.

    And I love the fact that you made a component for each class refinement, because this makes installing Rogue Rebalancing far easier (always used to install RR over Refinements because I wanted the bard / thief changes of RR).

  • AedanAedan Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 7,792
    Thank you very much. There are still many mods that need EE compability and Refinements was one of them. Keep up the good work!

  • inethineth Member Posts: 518
    I'm currently busy playing the second expansion of Pillars of Eternity, but once I inevitably return to the Infinity Engine games in the coming months I'll be very happy to find a properly ported EE Refinements waiting for me... :)

    (There was already this, but yours seems like a more thorough approach at updating and modernizing it.)

    Abel
  • BillyYankBillyYank Member Posts: 2,410
    Actually, I'm not familiar with the original Refinements mod. Perhaps a more comprehensive description would stir up some interest.

    jackjackMercilec
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    edited March 2016
    ineth said:

    (There was already this, but yours seems like a more thorough approach at updating and modernizing it.)

    Interesting. I was not aware of that. Does it work?

    Anyway yes mine will be cooler. :sunglasses:

    @BillyYank Refinements is a mod that updates and creates HLAs for every class and vanilla kit. Let's be honest, the vanilla HLAs were often just terrible. Bards can suddenly create special traps, equally potent as the HLA traps of the Bounty Hunter who has spent his whole career perfecting his ability to set traps??

    I don't even remember the other ways they are terrible. But they're terrible.

    Refinements adds some seriously cool new abilities, and makes every class's and kit's HLA table 1) unique, and 2) reflect the theme and characteristics of that class or kit. Warning: this gets rid of UAI. But let's be honest, UAI was junk and a crutch, anyway. These HLAs are better. Use Scrolls and Scribe Scrolls are all you need (they turn your thief into an extra mage) AND they are real PnP-based abilities.

    Refinements is been the singular go-to mod for improving HLAs for over a decade. It was one of those classic mods at the top of every player's list, along with SCS, RR, BG2Tweaks, etc. Honestly I feel like I'm burglarizing a museum or something by messing with its code. But there is no other mod improving HLAs for BG2EE, so this is desperately needed.

    Once I have this working well, you will play BG2EE with it, and you will never go back to using the vanilla HLAs, ever. I'm serious.

    Btw here is 0.3. Should be MUCH better than 0.2. Everything actually installs into place as it should. Does it actually work in-game? I don't know, I don't have time to play this game. But everything is where it should be, so it should all work.

    Bonus: this version uses a leaner, meaner, simplified Use Scrolls ability when installed on BG2EE.

    Grammarsalad
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    Btw just to clarify, 0.3 is not an EE version of refinements - it is an update of the official version. This is meant to 1) give more choices in which HLAs to install, and 2) update it for use on BG2EE, while 3) allowing it to function exactly the same on TOB/BGT.

    Oh yeah, forgot to mention, 0.3 has the multiclass HLAs working with my new modular installation system. :smiley:

  • inethineth Member Posts: 518

    Interesting. I was not aware of that. Does it work?

    Yeah, it seemed to work when I tried it last summer.
    But I didn't dare to use it with kit mods or Rogue Rebalancing or other things which might mess with it.

    Refinements adds some seriously cool new abilities, and makes every class's and kit's HLA table 1) unique, and 2) reflect the theme and characteristics of that class or kit.

    Yes, in particular, each specialist mage school and each Priest denomination gets at least one unique HLA that fits their theme.

    And each multi-class gets at least one unique HLA as well, instead of only getting a mix of their base classes' HLAs.

    And Monks gets a completely new and thematically fitting set of HLAs - in the unmodded game they simply got the same ones as Fighters, which was pretty lame (and rumor has it, a result of time pressure during ToB's development).

    Warning: this gets rid of UAI.

    I thought it removes it from Thieves and gives it to Bards instead?
    Which makes sense to me, because Bards are supposed to be the "jack of all trades" class.

  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    Oh yeah, sorry, maybe bards keep UAI. It's been a really long time since I played through TOB, and I've been delving into the Weidu code of this mod, I barely even looked at the tables or the readme :lol:

  • TheMetaphysicianTheMetaphysician Member Posts: 72
    This looks awesome. Thanks for all the work you are doing on this mod and the others you have been working on. It is much appreciated.

    I was reading over in the Refinements forums, and ran across an issue that the old mod had, which I wondered if this one would have too. Apparently if you used Level 1 NPCs or a Keeper program to create an illegal multiclass (like, say, making Minsc a Barbarian/Cleric), the game crashed when you leveled the character up and needed to select an HLA. The reason was the existence of distinctive HLAs for specific multiclasses and for specific kits, or something, so that there needed to exist a table for each multiclass and each kit (which didn't exist for the illegal combos)?

    I was wondering if that issue will remain even in your version of the mod. Also, would this cause problems for mod-generated kits, or multiclasses (perhaps illegal ones) using mod-generated kits?

    If it does, could the issue be solved simply by declining to install the multiclass HLAs (since you've given us the option to go through and install the HLAs class-by-class -- which is awesome by the way)? Or by declining to install the distinctive kit-specific HLAs, sticking only with generic class HLAs? Or is it not that easy?

    The reason I ask is that I'm excited to try some illegal kitted multiclasses on my next run. :)

  • TheMetaphysicianTheMetaphysician Member Posts: 72
    One more question: would this mess with SCS's assignments of HLAs to enemies?

  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    @TheMetaphysician I've never looked at how SCS interacts with Refinements. If it assigns the vanilla HLAs to enemies, then you might see them doing different stuff than what you can do... but that's not the end of the world.

    As for the multiclass crashes, it's not that simple unfortunately. I think if a kit has any table other than FI0, CL0, etc., and you put it in a multiclass, then when it's time for HLAs the game will try to use your kit's table and also try to use the multiclass table, and freaked out.

    Admittedly, I have not tested this on the EEs. But in the vanilla engine it's pretty intractable, and I have no reason to think Beamdog did anything about it.

    I'm working on another mod that allows multiclass clerics to take a cleric kit, and because our cleric kits have custom HLA tables, we are having to add duplicate versions of the kits, using the vanilla tables instead of our custom tables. It's a lot of hoops to jump through, but I think it's necessary. :(

  • inethineth Member Posts: 518
    Really?

    I thought I had used Refinements with kitted multiclasses (from Level 1 NPCs) before, and didn't get any crashes; I think it just gave me the HLAs for the multiclass (and ignored the kit).

    But maybe I remember wrong...

  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    edited April 2016
    There were definitely crashes, but it didn't always happen, and nobody ever completely figured out why. It was an entrenched engine issue. Go read the Refinements forums from a few years ago over on SHS, you find talk about it.

    BUT, I just did some testing with Faiths & Powers multiclasses, and they don't seem to crash!! I just got the regular multiclass table. (An aside. that's a bit of a shame, it means multiclasses can't take advantage of our sphere-based HLA tables.) But anyway,

    This is HUGE.

    I don't think Beamdog looked at this in particular, but the EE engine is much less crash-prone in general than the old engine, so maybe this is a happy by-product. In any event, I guess I will encourage people to use Refinements along with NPC_EE or Faiths & Powers, or other HLA-changing mods. If it crashes for anyone then we'll know there is still an issue. And if it doesn't crash, then... happy gaming! :smiley:

    Post edited by subtledoctor on
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    Quick update to beta 0.4:
    https://github.com/subtledoctor/refinements/releases/tag/0.4

    This makes a change to something that doesn't even apply to the EE games, so probably don't even worry about it. :)

    Pteran
  • PteranPteran Member Posts: 388
    Thanks for all your hard work man! I'm excited to put this to use once I make it back to another BG saga run through.

  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    Okay, here's an update to what I'll call "beta 0.5 of version 4.0."

    https://github.com/subtledoctor/refinements/releases/tag/b4.0.5

    This enables the Sword Angel kit on EE games (but I have not tested it thoroughly) and it uses a brand new mechanism to patch HLA tables instead of overwriting them, so the HLA components will now compatible with any other changes players may make to HLA tables. (But, I have not tested compatibility with Oversight (for monks) or RR (for thieves/bards)... if Refinements duplicates HLAs from those mods with different filenames, then the combination may produce duplicates in tables. Soon, I'll go through and compare them and use some logic to eliminate any such duplicates.

    inethDarkersunelminster
  • ArthasArthas Member Posts: 429
    given the chance to multiclass every kit, do you think it would be more powerful a barbarian multiclassed with a mage, or a classical dual class berserker mage? :P

  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    @Arthas I'm not sure what you're asking? Do you mean in the context of Refinements HLAs...?

    Meantime, I should have another update ready soon. I've coded in proper compatibility with RR HLAs, so you no longer have to do install-order gymnastics to have both mods installed.

    But before I release the update I need to fix multiclass HLAs, they are getting way too many. I need to trim their tables down to the original Refinements tables.

    Aedan
  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    Okay folks, I have updated this to beta 0.6:

    https://github.com/subtledoctor/refinements/releases/tag/0.6

    This version fixes a couple bugs, fixes multiclass HLA tables to properly match the ones in the official Refinements v3 release, uses better code to patch HLA tables, and includes a bunch of code adding specific compatibility with the Rogue Rebalancing HLA components.

    Yes: as of now, you can successfully use both Rogue Realancing and Refinements together on BG2EE. Furthermore, it is now easier than it used to be - you don't need to split up RR components anymore. This version of Refinements should be installed AFTER RR. The result, in-game, will be the same as it was the old pre-EE method of installing RR->Refinements->RR HLAs.

    So for instance, my personal install order which includes HLA changes for rogues from Might & Guile, looks like this:
    - RR
    - M&G
    - Refinements

    Simple!

    Enjoy, and if you use this, report any bugs so we can squash them! :)

    Aedanineth
  • AedanAedan Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 7,792
    Thank you very much for this update!

  • ArthasArthas Member Posts: 429
    Thanks for this mod. Is there a list of all possible effects for both evil and good divine intervention?

  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    Arthas said:

    Thanks for this mod. Is there a list of all possible effects for both evil and good divine intervention?

    Good question. I honestly have no idea, as I did not make the mod, only adapted it for use on the modern EE game. You might poke around the original mix forum to find the answer:
    http://www.shsforums.net/forum/116-refinements/

  • ArthasArthas Member Posts: 429
    thanks for at least trying. If I install this mod with rogue rebalancing, do you know which one applies for Thieves? Do I get a mix of the two? Or just the one that I installed last?

    Do you know how it works in BWS?

  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    You should install the RR HLAs component first. Then Refinements. From reading s bunch of forums, it seems to me that RR generally had better versions of abilities, so whenever they have something in common, this version of Refinements will defer to RR. So you should get the best of both worlds, instead of having to choose one or the other.

    Something I have not looked into is UAI. Refinements eliminates UAI from the thief table and replaces it with Use Scrolls. I'm pretty sure that also happens if you also install RR, since RR doesn't modify UAI as far as I know.

    Also, remember that one of the main things I did here was to break out the different classes and make an optional component for each. So if you want, you can install RR HLAs for thieves and bards, and install Refinements HLAs for priests and wizards. Then thieves will keep UAI.

    The more options the better!
    Arthas said:

    Do you know how it works in BWS?

    I don't. As of this most recent version, RR should be installed first... but I'm not sure whether BWS has made that change, and SHS is down do I can't tell @agb1. (Oh wait, agb1 is here! :) Maybe he'll see this post.)

  • trinittrinit Member Posts: 673
    @subtledoctor thank you so much for your efforts in keeping the mods up to date, i really appreciate it (i lurk here regularly). hopefully i will have time soon for another playthrough!

    btw, does anyone know what is general consensus on new HLAs? does it make certain/all classes overpowered? i realize added versatility already increases power but i was mostly hoping for thematically appropriate HLAs rather than adding more cheese...

  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,340
    My sense is that, in general, Refinements reduces cheese rather than increasing it.

    trinitineth
  • psycrospsycros Member Posts: 34
    edited June 2016

    My sense is that, in general, Refinements reduces cheese rather than increasing it.

    I like cheese. Preferably melted on a chimichanga. You know what I love just as much - possibly even more? Updated mods, particularly when those updates aid compatibility with other mods.


    mf2112
  • kelthalaskelthalas Member Posts: 8
    edited July 2016
    hey i'm posting here since there are no issue tracker on your fork

    My mod list contains spell revisions and refinement (installed in that order using BWS) and I noticed that refinements overwrites the spell "Spell Shield" (spwi519.spl) with a bugged version. That spell is supposed to block a single Magic Attack (i.e. Secret Word), but after installing refinements spell shield is no longer removed after absorbing it. This makes the caster immune to magic attacks for the full duration.

    I'm not sure why refinement would touch a non HLA spell

    this is the weidu log I had when I originally stumbled upon the bug http://pastebin.com/jwu2hJ04 but I was able reproduce it on a clean install with just spell revisions and then spell revisions+refinements


    thanks for your help

    EDIT: I investigated a bit more :
    after installing my mods and replacing spwi519.spl in my override folder with spell revisions's one , Spell Shield correctly absorbed a single magic attack (i used a simulacrum casting secret word on my mage with spell shield + spell deflection).

    However, the mage NPC that led me find to find this bug (the drow mage mage that you can duel in the tavern in Ust Nasha), still uses a bugged version (SCS required for him to cast that spell).
    Not sure if it's relevant but he uses spell shield in a spell trigger alongside a spell deflection.

    I noticed that in SCS' doc there is mention of a fix for a bugged spell shield, so maybe there is some bad interaction between all these mods?

    Post edited by kelthalas on
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