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[MOD] Test Your Mettle!

argent77argent77 Member Posts: 2,767
edited August 31 in BGII:EE Mods

Test Your Mettle!

A mod for BG2:EE and EET (Enhanced Edition Trilogy) that provides you with a unique dungeon crawling experience.

Download: Spellhold Studios, GitHub (35 MB)

Readme


Overview

This mod provides you with a whole new adventure where you can explore new areas, meet exotic races, uncover a devious plot, or simply enjoy battle with an endless stream of monsters.

The adventure starts in the Planar Sphere in Athkatla's Slum District, where you may encounter new victims of Lavok's planar travels. The result of the encounter will enable you to access a dungeon that has been tailor-made for the intrepid adventurer.

Note: This mod requires BG2:EE or EET, patched to version 2.0 or higher.

Components

1. Test Your Mettle! (requires BG2:EE or EET, patched to 2.0 or higher)

This is the main component. It installs many new areas, creatures, items, spells and everything else needed for a unique dungeon crawling experience. Moreover, this component restores the spell "Spacewarp", which is based on cut content from BG2. It can be acquired as a mage or priest spell in the course of the adventure.

2. Reduce experience for killing monsters (requires the main component)

As the monsters you may encounter in the dungeon are numerous, you will quickly gain a lot of experience that could make your party too powerful to enjoy the rest of the game. This component allows you to reduce XP from killing monsters by different amounts, or remove XP altogether. Unique monsters or creatures encountered outside the dungeon are not affected.

3. Make "Spacewarp" available to stores (requires the main component)

This component adds the mage spell "Spacewarp" to a small number of stores for sale. In "Shadows of Amn" it can be purchased from Ribald's special store in the Adventurer Mart, that becomes available in chapter 6. In "Throne of Bhaal" it is available from Lazarus Librarus' Arcana Archives in Saradush or Amkethran as well as from Karthis al-Hezzar, who can be found in the wilderness between Saradush and the Forest of Mir.

Screenshots:

The adventure:

image

image

image

The new spell:

image

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Post edited by argent77 on
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Comments

  • AedanAedan Member, Translator (NDA) Posts: 8,220
    Congratulations for this release! You keep bringing life and new ideas to the modding scene :)

    CaszidyStummvonBordwehr
  • Contemplative_HamsterContemplative_Hamster Member Posts: 844
    I'll test your mettle with cold steel!

    ThacoBell
  • UlbUlb Member Posts: 290
    Hey, not sure if my version is working properly (still using 0.1 release) or if I am just missing something?
    I've been through quite a few rooms but I can't seem to "progress" the quest and just doing those rooms got boring a while ago.
    I got multiple coin bags, goodies, magic items and clues to drop and also a note detailing Modron culture which supposedly improves communications with the Modrons. Yet, none of the Modrons I talked to had any additional dialogue options (including the director) and there seems to be nothing else I can interact with.

  • argent77argent77 Member Posts: 2,767
    edited April 2018
    Thanks for your feedback!

    The scholarly notes are primarily there for lore reasons, but can also help you to communicate with the monodrones if your intelligence is too low (but don't expect too much from a creature that talks in binary code).

    If your version is from around this time then expect a good number of improvements regarding combat, a couple of bugfixes and a few new items or item improvements. The director will have (slightly) more to say after progressing the plot.

    What do you think can be done to keep combat interesting enough even after a while?

    Did you make it into the areas with boss battles already?

    Post edited by argent77 on
    Ulb
  • UlbUlb Member Posts: 290
    Hey, thanks for your answer.

    I did install the mod around the time of that post, yes. I guess re-installing a later version shouldn't cause any trouble since the mod is the last one installed anyway, so I'll do that.

    My main issue with the mod so far is that I just couldn't tell if I am progressing at all. Except for that one room with the dead scholar, all rooms seemed more or less random generated (which, of course is the whole point of the mod, even lore wise. I get that.) Still, there is no feeling of progress and no indication as to how many more rooms it would take to advance the quest. The enemies so far were not overly difficult and difficulty did not appear to advance either.

    One thing that might help elevate that feeling of just going through multiple iterations of the same random encounter would be dialogue or very short scripted actions. Just a few one liners before combat or a malfunctioning construct from time to time might help quite a bit. The encounters in the Watcher's Keep maze might also offer some inspiration.
    Of course, a wider variety of enemies might also help.

    Apart from that, the mod looks great so far. Implementation is top notch, as always, and the Modrons are presented in a very interesting and entertaining way.

    If I understand you correctly, I'll just have to keep going through rooms until I hit more boss encounters and the quest will progress from there? If that's the case I'll do that and hit you with some more feedback when I'm done.

    argent77Aedan
  • bob_vengbob_veng Member Posts: 2,259
    perhaps the difficulty should advance every few rooms, by a little. is that possible?

    another crazy idea is to create evolving constructs:

    if you kill 10 constructs with magical damage all constructs develop magic resistance, if you kill them with slashing, they gain slashing res etc...

    argent77Loldrup
  • argent77argent77 Member Posts: 2,767
    Thanks for your suggestions to spice up combat. I'll see if or how I can implement (some of) them. Creatures are currently already scripted to apply a wide range of bonus resistances or skills, but on a random basis, only influenced by party level.

    The recycling system (for the bogus items) has been improved as well. But for this change to take effect you will most likely have to start the adventure anew, since it requires the foyer map to be reset. (Or use NI to remove the map manually from your saved game.)

    Ulb said:

    If I understand you correctly, I'll just have to keep going through rooms until I hit more boss encounters and the quest will progress from there? If that's the case I'll do that and hit you with some more feedback when I'm done.

    Yes, more or less. If you know the maze layout from PST you will probably guess where potential boss rooms may be located. ;)

  • saber0saber0 Member Posts: 75
  • argent77argent77 Member Posts: 2,767
    @saber0 The mod can be installed on all supported platforms, including macOS. The package includes only the Windows installer though.

    I think the preferred way to install mods on macOS is using a mod manager: https://github.com/subtledoctor/OS-X-Weidu-Launcher/releases/latest

    Or alternatively you could download the macOS binary from here: http://www.weidu.org/~thebigg/

    Unpack the "weidu" binary from the zip file into the game's root folder and rename it to "setup-A7-TestYourMettle". You might also have to make it executable before it will start (e.g. via console command "chmod +x setup-A7-TestYourMettle", but there may also be other ways on Mac).

    saber0
  • saber0saber0 Member Posts: 75
    it's asking for
    Failure("Unable to find CHITIN.KEY: run me in an Infinity Engine game directory")
    but I have been able to run other mods in this folder?

  • argent77argent77 Member Posts: 2,767
    I think the games on macOS are slightly differently structured than on Windows or Linux. Look for a folder with the file chitin.key and place the binary as well as the whole mod folder into that directory. (Calling @subtledoctor for confirmation.)

  • saber0saber0 Member Posts: 75
    that works for every other mod, but not this one for some reason

  • BallpointManBallpointMan Member Posts: 695
    Mind if I ask how the XP adjustment is handled here? I remember seeing that you can set the amount of xp gained, is that a universal value for the whole game, or just the encounters here? Additionally, is it multiplicative with any other xp value adjustments? (For example, if I installed this as part of an EET campaign where I'd also installed a fix to lower the XP gain to 75, what would your values do?)

  • bob_vengbob_veng Member Posts: 2,259
    @BallpointMan

    just for the enemies in the mod

    it is multiplicative with EET xp reduction as far as i could tell (50% option in the mod and 50% from EET gave me IIRC 1/4 xp value)

    argent77
  • argent77argent77 Member Posts: 2,767
    @saber0 The mod does nothing special compared to other WeiDU mods regarding installation. Have you made sure that both mod folder "A7-TestYourMettle" as well as the binary "setup-A7-TestYourMettle" are in the same directory where you can find the chitin.key along with various game folders like "data" or "lang" (ie. NOT in the special subfolder with the macOS game executable)?

    I've been told another method to make mod installers work on macOS by creating a script file that is executed in place of the original binary. Create a text file "setup-A7-TestYourMettle.command" with the following content and make it executable:
    command_path=${0%/*} cd "$command_path" chmod +x setup-A7-TestYourMettle ./setup-A7-TestYourMettle

    @BallpointMan It's as bob_veng said. XP reduction applies only to the creatures found in the maze. It is cumulative with other mods that may tweak creature XP globally, provided they were/are installed after the main component of this mod.

  • saber0saber0 Member Posts: 75
    ahh I see, thank you,
    I think i somehow damage my CHITIN.key... is that possible?

  • argent77argent77 Member Posts: 2,767
    edited May 2018
    Possibly. In that case restoring or reinstalling the game should fix it.

    Edit: Btw, did you download and unpack "A7-TestYourMettle-0.1-beta.zip" from the download link or one of the source code files that are listed as well?

  • saber0saber0 Member Posts: 75
    I did the beta.zip I think

  • saber0saber0 Member Posts: 75
    is there a way to restore chitin.key without reinstalling?

  • argent77argent77 Member Posts: 2,767
    saber0 said:

    is there a way to restore chitin.key without reinstalling?

    I don't think so. This file is a key resource for the whole game. Without it you won't be able to run the game.

    saber0
  • Luke93Luke93 Member, Mobile Tester Posts: 1,232
    Could you provide additional details about how to access the new areas? Maybe use a spoiler tag...

  • argent77argent77 Member Posts: 2,767
    Luke93 said:

    Could you provide additional details about how to access the new areas? Maybe use a spoiler tag...

    Certainly.
    Enter the Planar Sphere in the Slums. Walk through the whole first level until you reach the chamber with the big moving gears. Defeat the creatures you'll find there. One of them should drop an item that can transport your party to the new area (activate it by using the item's "Converse" button).

    Luke93
  • RVNSRVNS Member Posts: 279
    This looks very fun! Are there any new items included in this mod as well?

  • argent77argent77 Member Posts: 2,767
    RVNS said:

    This looks very fun! Are there any new items included in this mod as well?

    Yes, there are. The questline rewards you with several useful (and unique) items.

    The mod provides you also with a trading system where you exchange collectibles, that you can find in the dungeon, into useful items or money. The rewards can be quite powerful, depending on how many items you're willing to collect. ;)

  • RVNSRVNS Member Posts: 279
  • RVNSRVNS Member Posts: 279
    Is there a suggested level for tackling this? Also do you gain exp for these encounters?

  • argent77argent77 Member Posts: 2,767
    edited July 2018
    Not really. Combat difficulty adapts to party experience (among other factors), so it might still be challenging if you tackle the dungeon late in SoA (or even ToB).

    You gain experience from killing monsters, maybe too much depending on how much time you're spending in there. That's why the mod provides a second component that reduces XP reward.

  • RVNSRVNS Member Posts: 279
    Got to test this out this weekend!

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