1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

A couple of custom faction questions

Discussion in 'Alpha Centauri' started by Pickly, Jun 5, 2009.

  1. Buster's Uncle

    Buster's Uncle AC2 Co-Owner

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,156
    Over the years, there have been an awful lot of custom factions posted in various places with only an unaltered official graphic included- I see the Free Drones .pcx a lot- or no graphic at all, which will get you the Gaian default graphic. It's fantastic that you went to the trouble of going that extra mile to make your work look distinct. I think it adds enormously to their value.

    I'm also impressed with the Word files you included. At lot of what makes a good faction work is how they provide a sense of personality- tell a bit of a story. Including files like these, not entirely necessary to enjoyment of the faction, but providing background and telling a bit more of the leader/faction's story than the game allows, is a great way to add value to your work.


    Basically, what you want to do to bundle it all up like this is to organize the files into subfolders, google up a program that will make .zip files, learn to use it- and add all the subfolders into a zip, which you then post as one master file. Also, forums in general will always like you better when you do what you can to reduce the size of what you attach, which zipping does.

    WinZip is available for a 45-day trial period, and is easy to learn and use. When that ran out, I found ZipCentral, which is free and almost as good.



    How finished do you consider your faction graphics? I have a few suggestions if you're interested in tuning them up along the line...

    But really, Pickly, way to go. :goodjob:
     
  2. vyeh

    vyeh Emperor

    Joined:
    May 15, 2006
    Messages:
    1,204
    I have a Mac. For Mac users, right click on the file and create an archive will produce a zip file.

    If you are interested in stories, look at this forum and its index.

    Now that you have finished your factions, I hope you will stay!
     
  3. Pickly

    Pickly Prince

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2009
    Messages:
    535
    Hopefully this one works. (if it does, I'll delete the fileplanet links. if not, I'll just keep trying until it does.)


     

    Attached Files:

  4. vyeh

    vyeh Emperor

    Joined:
    May 15, 2006
    Messages:
    1,204
    Basically, it worked. There was some additional material:

    In the main folder, there was pyramids.zip. which expanded to pyramids.pcx (I don't think you gain anything zipping a zip file, so it would probably have been better to leave the pyramids.pcx file unzipped); defaults.pcx and shields.pcx (something tells me that you didn't intend to post defaults.pcx, shields.pcx and pyramids.zip).

    There were some logo files in some of the folders.

    Arcology (Arcology.logo.xcf)
    Chiron Colonists (Chiron logo.jpg)
    Marketeers (Marketeer Logo 1.xcf and Marketeer Logo 2.xcf)

    Note no logo file in empire or tremblers.

    Hope that helps.
     
  5. Buster's Uncle

    Buster's Uncle AC2 Co-Owner

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,156
    If it was me, I'd not bother with the scan lines for the logos- and definitely add them to the leader portraits. I'm sure you've seen what I've posted in [graphics] about how I do that. I don't have a set routine for processing photos to look like paintings, so far, but basically, if you keep adjusting color levels, hue, brightness and contast, and blurring/sharpening, the colors of the leader’s skin become simpler (fewer shades), and look more like a painting does.

    This is the only place I’ve found the 256-color SMAC palette a help instead of a frustration. However, you still get instances like with your rugby player, where a lot of cyan creeps into the skin tone. If your program will do it, you should be able to sample that light blue, select the portrait, and select>color range (well, I had to fiddle with the color balance, hue, saturation and color lightness, but the attached took me five minutes in Photoshop 5, not even trying to be thorough or exact)...
     

    Attached Files:

  6. Pickly

    Pickly Prince

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2009
    Messages:
    535
    On logo scan lines:

    I did notice in game that some diplomacy logos don't have scan lines, but that the logos in the graphics files for the non-custom factions do, so wasn't entirely sure how to handle this. I'll try logos with no scan lines for the next two and see how they go.


    On the extra items in the folder:

    The "pyramids" zip file is one of Buster's pictures that I had downloaded to get ideas and than forgot was there. I'll remove it when I make the next round of adjustments to my factions.

    The logos are meant to be there, just so that if people here have ideas for handling the graphics on them, they can see what is going on.

    On leader pictures: This is probably the last thing I'll be adjusting, if i do it at all. (Since most of the pictures do somewhat look like they work style wise with the other faction pictures, even if it is not really perfect.), I'll take the advice, though, when i get the other stuff done and if I decide to make further adjustments.
     
  7. Pickly

    Pickly Prince

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2009
    Messages:
    535
    For anyone who's looked at the factions so far, do the marketeer graphics work in game? (They stopped working somehow between yesterday and today, the only change I made was adjusting the interest rate in the .txt file and adding the faction logo.)
     
  8. Pickly

    Pickly Prince

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2009
    Messages:
    535
    The newest update on these factions. (I still have cities, death screens, and possibly some logo cleanup to do.)

    Gameplay and diplomacy text have been adjustment somewhat (marketeers get 1% interest rather than 5%, diplomacy is adjusted to deal with some bugs/incorrect notation.)
     

    Attached Files:

  9. vyeh

    vyeh Emperor

    Joined:
    May 15, 2006
    Messages:
    1,204
    Are you still having problems with the marketeer graphics?
     
  10. Pickly

    Pickly Prince

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2009
    Messages:
    535
    No, those were solved with the graphics thread discussion.
     
  11. Pickly

    Pickly Prince

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2009
    Messages:
    535
    Finally got some cities added for my factions. (Plus made a couple gameplay changes.)

    (Hopefully the zip folder uploaded properly.)
     

    Attached Files:

  12. HenryAdams1838

    HenryAdams1838 Chieftain

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2013
    Messages:
    1
    I'm not sure if this thread is dead but I'm new to the game. I am trying to create a custom faction. I've posted the content I've completed below.

    1) Do you think these parameters would work?
    2) Have I compiled things correctly? I tried to do follow AlphaX.txt but somethings were unclear
    3) How could I make the computer stockpile money to take advantage of the interest rate? It takes the whole drunken sailor approach.
    4) What is the next step? Work on voice files or some graphics?
    5) How does one corner the energy market (I'm new to the game but I think I would want this faction to specialize in economic victory)
    6) Who/what is Lindly Scott from the game's text files? I don't know the game element with which this corresponds.

    Thanks for your help!

    Factions -- Names & personalities
    ;
    ; #The Ancient Machinery, The Machinery, masc, sing, The Siphoning Sequence, M, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1,
    ; He who Bids Energy Return, enigmatic, Siphoners
    ; ALIEN, TECH, TECH, Information Networks, Planetary Networks, Social Psych, Progenitor Psych, Industrial Base, Industrial Economics, SHARETECH, 2, SOCIAL,---POLICE, SOCIAL,--INDUSTRY, SOCIAL,---GROWTH, SOCIAL,++PROBE, SOCIAL,++EFFIC, SOCIAL,--PLANET, SOCIAL,-----RESEARCH, INTEREST, 11, UNIT, FUNGENERGY, 2,
    ; Economics, Green, Nil
    ; Politics, Fundamentalist
    ; Values, Knowledge, Nil
    ; Future Society, Eudaimonic, Nil
    ; Machinae, Machinae
    ; make what is what will never be again
    ; watch the vitality of all beings drains away to listlessness
    ; bleeding out all life so you can live in your lonely chamber somewhere
    ; stamping out all legitimate sentient development of this planet
    ; attempt to kill that which must breed envy in you
    ; cleaning off your rust
    ; delivering strange polemics
    ; eschatological ranting, M1
    ; enigmatic practices, M2
    ; inhuman rituals, M2
    ; Enervation Waiver Tax, M1
    ; delaying your deactivation sequence
    ; my Siphoning Tendrils
    ; the Litmust Test for Life
     
  13. Petek

    Petek Alpha Centaurian Administrator Supporter

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2001
    Messages:
    3,647
    Location:
    Berkeley, Calif., USA
    Hey HenryAdams1838,

    Welcome to CFC and the Alpha Centauri forum! I'll reply to some of your questions below.

    You might have a problem with the number of bonuses. You can't have more than eight, but that limit applies only to some of the bonuses. See Mart's post here for the details.
    Perhaps you meant to say that you were following faction.txt, which is the template for faction-specific text files. Near the beginning of your file you have two TECH entries. Not sure if that will cause a problem. If you really were referring to Alpha(x).txt, you might want to refer to this page, which is the definitive guide to editing that file.

    Several years ago I experimented with giving the AI the INTEREST bonus. As you observed, they always spent their ECs right away without letting it build up. Couldn't find a way around it.
    Perhaps some of our more experienced modders can offer some advice.
    After discovering Planetary Economics, a faction can attempt to corner the market by expending ECs approximately equal to the amount needed to mind control all the remaining bases on Planet. Is that the information you were looking for, or perhaps something else?
    That name is from gaians.txt. Each of the other faction text files has a similar entry. I think that they represent the faction's second-in-command or assistant to the leader. AFAIK, these entries aren't used in the game.

     
  14. Buster's Uncle

    Buster's Uncle AC2 Co-Owner

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,156
    Lindly is Dierdre's protégé. Dr. Scott is her scientist. Every faction has two people in those roles for the mindworm wrangler talent (and in the Dr.'s case) transcendence storylines in the interludes. You definitely want to include those names.

    I've never messed with the voice files, so I can't be sure, but I think they're not too hard to make and include, given a script and a good voice to read them.

    Graphics is my thing, so my opinion in suspect, but I think you can't have a real custom faction without them, and would recommend doing that first. Do you know how?
     
  15. scient

    scient Chieftain

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2009
    Messages:
    18
    These are used in interlude.txt. The first one is for $VOKI8, second one is for $SHIMODA9, and the last one is for $BASENAME6. I don't believe they're used for ALIEN factions, only human.
     
  16. Buster's Uncle

    Buster's Uncle AC2 Co-Owner

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,156
  17. scient

    scient Chieftain

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2009
    Messages:
    18
    That's true, but that isn't anything to do with custom factions. There is actually a check inside interlude code to specifically exclude FUNGBOY id (Cult).
     
  18. Buster's Uncle

    Buster's Uncle AC2 Co-Owner

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,156
    Yeah; as we discussed elsewhere, it's probably because the interludes display assumptions that the leader/POV/player character is a colonist from Earth - the interludes just don't fit Cha in too many places.
     

Share This Page