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Just for Fun

ZephiriusZephirius Member Posts: 173
edited June 14 in Builders - Toolset
Describe what annoys you most about the toolset. What you like too!

For me one of the most frustrating things about building is how the area you just created looks different in game than in the editor. Lighting looks a lot different to me. Henceforth this shall be known as "The Zephirius Effect", LOL

Anyway, horror stories abound - I don't know how many times I've errantly deleted my starting location and corrupted my module... :)

Comments

  • ForSeriousForSerious Member Posts: 251
    The thing that annoys me most is that it's not setup in a way that is conducive to implementing a version control system.
    I keep meaning to try and set one up, because I think it will work fine so long as you only run commands after the module has been open. I'm just worried because there are also so many ways it might just mess things up.

  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 5,811
    edited June 14
    what annoys me about the toolset? heh lots;

    FIRST lets go with the scripting, holy hell, unless you are a professional C+ code writer good luck in trying to accomplish anything script wise in the toolset, hell the scripting code could even be in a foreign language and i would still struggle just as much on what im doing

    now luckily i have a program thats called lilac's script generator which helps, but even then at times it can only do so much, so often i have to ask others on the forums for assistance because holy hell i just can't wrap my head around how this language works

    i had a forum user here name TarotRedhand give me some docs on how the scripting language works, but that might as well have been written in klingon because once it was started talking about hexidecimals and shapes and what not i was completely lost and could only think about the times i used to watch the TV show Reboot

    so yeah, not really a fan of trying to script stuff, luckily you can make some decent content without the use of over the top scripting

    SECOND, why in the sweet hell is there not a "henchmen wizard" or some such? building a henchmen from the ground up is an outrageously arduous task, and to put it simple; a complete nightmare, like my god. Hell to make a joinable NPC in the infinity engine games it is a googolplex times easier, and in fact, for the toolset people who make this thing, they could make a wizard very easily, set it up so; you make the henchmen, and by default it has all the scripts in place that the henchmen needs ( so you don't have to go through that hell ) and perhaps have a default convo file that says; i want to join you, ya or nay? just that in of itself, would be amazing

    lets see, what to complain about... Ah yes, placeables, so when i make areas, i like to place lots of placeables to really bring my areas to life, to make it way more immersive, the only problem is, i have to conintually go through each tab for placeable objects and have to scroll through so much garbage to find the placeables i want, why didn't they make it so you could make your own "placeable tabs" so i can order them better for my placeable needs? now rumor has it that you can do this "hak pak" load of nonsense to do this stuff ( and as you can gather from how im describing that, how much motivation i have for that rabbit hole ) or instead of 3rd party hak pak nonsense, they could just implement it instead? to this day i still find that odd, rumor has it that they have made many fixes and added many more features to the toolset since the inception of the EE but as far as i know, i've seen no changes

    Ah another thing, creature scaling, this one is a bit frustrating to, so when you make a creature bigger than it's supposed to be ( or even smaller ) it's default size is set to medium ( unless you do the dragon one ) which to be honest is kind of... dumb. Now again, if you are a scripting wiz ( which i definitely am not ) i hear you can script the creature size in, or something that would make astronomical more sense; check a checkbox in creature properties somewhere that confirms creature size. Like seriously, the thing that drives me about this toolset, is that if you want to do ANYTHING just SLIGHTLY out of the norm you have to jump through so many unnecessary damn hoops to make it happen, when it could be just as easy as clicking a few boxes. Actually taking about scaling creatures, even that is way more pain in the ass than it needs to be, why do i have to "guess" if its L,S,H and then go to tail and go through a list of creatures that isn't in alphabetical order to change their size? holy smokes, unnecessary hoops, why not just have a scaling bar that goes from 1% to 200 or 1000% and you can either type in the % number, or scroll the bar to what you see fit, seriously, just making things harder than they need to be

    another thing i found irritating was inconsistency, now where this happened was a had a weird whacky little machine thingy, you had the proper ingredients, it would make you some potions ( and somehow with my noodle brain i was actually able to figure that one out, go figure ) anyway, what i found was, for some weird reason, if it was a default item it would use the blue print reference, but if it was a custom item, it would use the tag reference, holy hell was that a nightmare, and took me forever to figure out, since in the script commands im pretty damn sure "tag" was the word being used, not "blueprint" so that was a bother

    ah, thought of another one; items. oh man making custom items can sometimes smell worse than socks that haven't been changed for 3 months, like oi. For example, i had a module where i made some more gems ( like pearls and the such ) BUT the thing that was annoying there is no option to change colors of the default gems ( so you can artificially make more ) and when you make custom gems, if you do not use a "gem" pic they will not stack to 10 which is even more annoying, like why? and also armor as well, the way on how they set this stuff up is ass backwards in my opinion, first it should ask what type you want to make, not go through the torso list and just hope you can get the design you want for the AC its going to provide, like why? and then with armor, all the colors in the world are a choice ( which is GOOD ) but this is the only thing that applies to, not weapons, not items, nothing else, and to be honest, that is just annoying as piss, for example, trying to make custom kukris and kamas i believe, is hard because you basically only have 3 color options and that is it, hell they don't even have different designs, like lol what? just so many damn times when i make custom items im just shaking my head thinking to myself; why? why did they do it this way?

    another complaint; there is no way without some extreme toolset wizardry to permanently increase ability scores for characters, meaning; you cannot make tomes, you cannot give it as a reward for a quest well done, nothing and my question is why? that just doesn't make any sense, if you build a module that requires characters to have a bit more horse power to get through it would be nice to help bump them up a bit, but alas nope, no can do lolololololol

    now this next one, is only a minor annoyance, but still puzzling and that is; why does EVERYTHING need a script? now i actually kind of find it mildy amusing more than anything; talk to holmes with 17+ INT; script, talk to holmes the first time; script, open up shop; script, pick your nose; script, exist; script. Like holy moly scripts man, scripts, i remember the one adventure i made where you could grow to like level 8 or 9 and i probably had 1000 scripts and 800+ of those was just things like; 16+ INT; race halfling; alignment not good; alignment not evil. I just find it weird the amount of things that save as a script

    actually another thing i just thought of; random treasure, why in the sweet hades cannot i not make random treasure tables? rumor has it that i would have to screw around with .2da files and 3rd party software this, hack into the game that OR it could just be a default option. Like seriously, did NO ONE think that ANY player would want to do this when making THEIR OWN ADVENTURES? now i don't know what was going on in 2003 when this game was being made, but seriously, when it comes to making your own adventures this option should have been at the top of the list for players to be able to do, ugh

    so with a lot of these complaints i have, some people might say; but oh mighty Sarevok57 you could just use hak pak, or whick wacks, or 3rd party this, 3rd party that, but my response to that is; why? this is fundamental stuff that should ALREADY be IN the toolset, plus with 3rd party nonsense, all that does is make it more susceptible to bugs, and if players don't have the same whacky paks you have, their game won't work, so then thats more hoops for them to jump through and bleeeeh, in this day and age, the toolset should be making things easier, not continuing to keep things complicated. Or maybe its just me, perhaps i have the intellectual integrity of a sack of hammers and thats the reason why i find it difficult to navigate the toolset jungle at times.

    now, those are the gripes, now lets talk about some good things, because if it wasn't for some good things, then i wouldn't even be messin' with this toolset;

    so FIRST, the thing i like doing most in the toolset is making areas. Everytime i make an area, i always have a general theme when i make an area and i just go to town. Then when i play test the area it just feels so alive, this is actually one gripe i have with the campaigns is that so many areas are just boring to look at/play. For example in chapter 2 i believe in the OC the goblin/orc/gnoll cave area, holy crap is that area lame and boring as hell, its brutal to find your way around, and i could probably count the amount of placeables on one hand for those 16x16 areas, to be honest, that's quite a joke

    in the new campagin that im making you start off in a desert with a raging wind storm and i probably have around 200+ placeables in that area and its only a 12x12, and all the placeables in that area make sense and serve their purpose. One advantage of playing my modules is that when you explore dungeons and areas they feel so much more alive, they feel like there is an actual community going on in there. Another example is a tower i have that is filled with spiders, despite the room is 3x3, i'm pretty sure i have anywhere from 30-50 placeables in those areas as well, and it really brings that tower to life, and really makes it feel that it's an ancient tower that was used sometime in the past, and now is filled with broken things and webbing and it really helps set the tone of the adventure.

    You would be amazed at how much more to life a boring ass 3x3 cave can become if you place some extra rocks, debris, mushrooms and the like, it really makes it pop out better

    SECOND, another thing i like is the encounter triggers, because holy smokes if it wasn't for that, trying to script those random encounters of that caliber would be beyond a nightmare, although with that said, it works kind of in a weird way, aka to have my encounters actually scale up with the character level i have to set them to "hard" or higher, or else "normal" or lower will always warp in the weakest guys with the minimum amount, but other than that, the encounter wizard is a pretty solid tool and is great to use, especially if you make multiple dungeons in one area and can have them scale up with the player level so then they can do them in the order that they wish

    another thing i like doing is making interesting spell casters, in the OCs the spell casters are either lame or just plain boring as hell. I like to give my spell casters a wide variety of spells, not just the same "power gaming" spell group, because once you start doing that, then it becomes super easy to defend against if you know exactly what spells the casters are going to use. Now unfortunately i can't script them as awesome as i can with NI but i at least can do a much better job than the OCs when it comes to spell scripting. In fact proof of that was in one of the modules i made where you fight in a monster arena and fight against various spell casters and especially at higher levels, oi, they can be brutal, especially with those bigby spells, good times. Now if only i could figure out how to use meta magic feats for my casters then they would REALLY begin to wreck shop....

    thats all i can think of for now, if i can think of more, i will post more

    EDIT: man, i really need to learn how to spell/grammar check/ use periods on these big posts. whoops

    ABJECT_SELF
  • ZephiriusZephirius Member Posts: 173
    Sarevok, I think you could have mastered c+ in the amount of time it took you to write this... LOL
    So what's really on your mind? Ha!

    sarevok57Zwerkules
  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 5,811
    Zephirius wrote: »
    Sarevok, I think you could have mastered c+ in the amount of time it took you to write this... LOL
    So what's really on your mind? Ha!

    hahahaha, especially when i went back to check for spelling errors and the such hahaha

  • ZephiriusZephirius Member Posts: 173
    Yeah to the henchman wizard. I couldn't agree more. Wouldn't that be novel though? Hell yeah!

  • meaglynmeaglyn Member Posts: 97
    That there is no Linux client. (Although in fairness the newer builds have been running nicely in wine...)

  • ForSeriousForSerious Member Posts: 251
    edited June 15
    @sarevok57 That was a joy to read.
    Dude, this game was revolutionary when it came out. The only game that even came close to its customizability was WarCraft III, witch came out the same year.

    I love scripting. If you play my module, you'll probably find it more boring than the campaign, for it's lack of detail. It's got some nifty scripts going on though.
    What would happen if we formed a module creation team?

    Your rant about the henchmen wizard makes me laugh. I think once I learned that you get more XP without them, I ditched them forever. Hordes of the Underdark, they made them more bearable, so I'm okay with them in there. Summons are great scapegoats I suppose.

    sarevok57
  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 5,811
    ForSerious wrote: »
    @sarevok57 That was a joy to read.
    Dude, this game was revolutionary when it came out. The only game that even came close to its customizability was WarCraft III, witch came out the same year.

    I love scripting. If you play my module, you'll probably find it more boring than the campaign, for it's lack of detail. It's got some nifty scripts going on though.
    What would happen if we formed a module creation team?

    Your rant about the henchmen wizard makes me laugh. I think once I learned that you get more XP without them, I ditched them forever. Hordes of the Underdark, they made them more bearable, so I'm okay with them in there. Summons are great scapegoats I suppose.

    i was the same in terms of once i learned that having henchmen on my team made me lose XP i never used them again, regardless of class i was playing

    although for custom modules, some players may prefer them, so for the campaign im making, i think when it comes to henchmen, that's exactly what they are going to be; mercenaries for hire, so for those players playing squishier classes, or who are more into RP than power game, then at least that aspect is there

    and in terms of playing modules with tons of scripts, i don't mind playing those type of modules, as long as i am not the one to script them ;)

  • ABJECT_SELFABJECT_SELF Member Posts: 23
    My biggest gripe and the source of my love/hate relationship with Aurora is the fact that you simply cannot perform any tasks in parallel because you can only have one window in focus at a time.

    I've been spoiled on Gamemaker Studio 2's wonderful interface, especially its workspace layout. I can create a creature, set variables on it, write all its behavior code, set relations with other objects, AND have three or four other windows open at the same time so I can quickly peek at tags and variable names.

    In Aurora, I need to open a window to create a creature, open another to write its spawn code, close the code editor to check back for the resource ID, reopen the script editor to apply it, close both the script editor and the creature editor to open another creature editor to get its tag before going back through the whole thing to the script editor, then do it again because I forgot what the tag was in the time it took all these windows to load.

    It's absolutely exhausting and the reason I have to dial back my modding ambitions so much. A task that would take one hour in GMS2 would take four hours in Aurora. The one thing Aurora has going for it speed-wise is the wealth of pre-made content for it.

    And I know people are sick of me saying this, but the 45-meter draw distance on non-static placeables makes it brutally difficult to design set pieces and decorate distant landscapes, which was what I was most excited about when Beamdog implemented object scaling.
    sarevok57 wrote: »
    FIRST lets go with the scripting, holy hell, unless you are a professional C+ code writer good luck in trying to accomplish anything script wise in the toolset, hell the scripting code could even be in a foreign language and i would still struggle just as much on what im doing

    VERY good incentive to learn C+ though ;)
    For real though, tinkering with NWScript as a teen is what led me to get my Bachelors in computer science. It's a wonderful skill to have. If you simply don't have the time, the community is always here to help with unique scripts.

    sarevok57NeverwinterWights
  • ForSeriousForSerious Member Posts: 251
    And that is why I have a text file open and paste everything into it—even if I never end up using it.

  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 5,811
    ForSerious wrote: »
    And that is why I have a text file open and paste everything into it—even if I never end up using it.

    same here, for complicated type stuff i have some notepad saved documents and just copy paste away, or i go back to an unfinished module where i made some fancy script and just copy paste from there as well, this is why i never delete my unfinished modules

  • ForSeriousForSerious Member Posts: 251
    I do agree that it is annoying to have to: close the current module, open another one, copy the script(s), paste into a text file, close the module, then finally open the first one again and paste the scripts.

  • ZephiriusZephirius Member Posts: 173
    here here, most aggrivating to have to close it all up.

  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 5,811
    just thought of another thing that would be great if the toolset had this option; being able to change the color scheme of enemies, why oh why does that not exist? it would be nice for example to change the fire giant to green or purple and the scale them up a bit to make "storm giants" or make blue fire giants to simulate "cloud giants"

    in fact, there is an appearance tab in the creature properties, so perfect place for it, seriously, when they made the toolset, not much 4th dimensional thinking went in to it did it? such a shame

  • ForSeriousForSerious Member Posts: 251
    This game was made right before downloadable updates really took off. If they had put as much effort and customization into every monster as they did into the player characters, the game would have never made it out of development.
    Man I remember running the NWN updater. You never knew if your game would work right after. If it didn't, you had to hope they would make a hotfix patch and post in online quick.
    Sigh. 80MB patch on dial-up internet. That could take like 2-4 hours.

    What I'm trying to get at is: this game was made at a time when it had to be a complete working product before it was released. Updates were a last resort, not like so many games today where updates are planned to be a major part of the vitality of the game. And I would just like to say the name Cyperpunk 2077 right now. Just dwell on what you know about that game.

    So, could they add such extras? There's a whole Community Expansion Pack that says they (Beamdog) don't really need to.

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