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Cross-Platform Editor for Conquests now available!

Discussion in 'Civ3 - Creation & Customization' started by Quintillus, Aug 30, 2010.

  1. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    Yes, rails shall automatically place road in the same fashion as the Firaxis editor, perhaps with an option to have different behavior as well. I currently have the "core" overlays (things workers can create that aren't owned by a civ as colonies are) paintable, and am checking that these overlays work equivalently to how they do in Firaxis's editor as a default.

    Unfortunately not for having more than one building requirement for another building. The scenario format (BIQ) is designed such that only one building can be a prerequisite, and changing that would require a game update.

    Building requirements for units aren't directly possible, but you can somewhat work around that by having the unit require a resource that isn't available anywhere on the map, and also having it be auto-produced by one or more buildings at set intervals. This works with non-wonder buildings as well, so you could, e.g. have a Tank Factory that produces a Tank every 5 turns until obsolete or sold, perhaps with a higher-than-average maintenance costs or requiring certain goods to be in the city radius if you didn't want to have it kept forever or being placed in every city.
     
  2. Oni Ryuu

    Oni Ryuu King

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    I think I know what you’re going to say but I still have to ask.

    Can it be made so a bombard or a bombing run will hit a pre-determined number of enemies occupying the same tile using one move?
    Can a bombard or a bombing run cause disease on a tile for a set number of turns?
    Is it possible to reduce the re-base function to 3 times a unit’s operational range rather than 6?

    I know I’m a pain in the ass but I want to get the most out of this game.
     
  3. Nathiri

    Nathiri Commander

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    A little weird why only 1 was just allowed. You would think that Firaxis would of allowed the option.

    Yeah I'm aware of the auto-production method, just hoped maybe it was just the limits of the interface with what was coded into the editor menus, not the code. Having buildings required for units would add so much more to civ3. I dont really like auto-production for normal units, because I like a city's production to be more of a factor, than just building the building, and watching the units come at a set time even while your city is producing something else. For certain special things it is good, but not for the majority of your army. Also, to have most of your army by auto-production means you need a good amount of other buildables that are constanty needed so your cities still have necessary production prioritization.
     
  4. Laurana Kanan

    Laurana Kanan Don’t underestimate who I am.

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    @Quintillus Was wondering if it was possible to increase the width of the outlined boxes on the Unit tab like how they are on the Buildings tab?
    Spoiler :
    NWO Unit Editor Screen.png
     
  5. Oni Ryuu

    Oni Ryuu King

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    Hi Nathiri.

    I know what you mean. I have fourteen types of motorised vehicle available for production at any time so auto production for them and other categories will be inconceivable. I’ve considered auto production for standard infantry, cruiser tanks and other common units but I fell out of favour with the idea. I’d love to use buildings such as tank manufactories and aeronautics centres. Additionally I’d like to upgrade facilities; for example a dry-dock to a shipyard removing the former.

    Separate to your grievance; the game limits the number of buildings a city can have. I want to add multiple suburban districts to a city to increase the population capacity and reducing general unhappiness. I love the game but it’s limitations are frustrating.
     
  6. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    Unfortunately not, at least in any way I know of. Would be some interesting options though; the re-base one in particular seems like something that would have been logical for Firaxis to include tweakability of.

    I think this is indicative of modding being a secondary priority of Civ3; the modding tools in Vanilla (particularly early versions of Vanilla) were pretty limited - although AFAIK even the earliest versions had rudimentary editor support, which is more than can be said for Civ6 currently (surprisingly). In other words, the priority for Civ3's development was the epic game. They probably created the initial editing tools to support what the epic game supports, and then realized, "hey, you could do a lot with this, we should make this available to the community, make a scenario-focused expansion [Conquests], and add some new abilities for that expansion's scenarios". But my suspicion is the genesis of the Firaxis editor - and the BIC/BIQ format - was making development of the epic game, and later Conquests easier, with features determined by what was needed for those.

    By contrast, by the time Civ4 was underway, the modding community had shown its ingenuity, and modding support was a fundamental building block of Civ4. This makes the amount of things you can do in Civ4 almost limitless, provided you're willing to spend enough time on it (and work within the confines of the graphical engine). I suspect nearly all of the features mentioned in the past few pages could be done in Civ4, though with significantly varying degrees of difficulty. The flip side, however, was that the great power of Civ4 meant the average difficulty of creating a mod was higher. The WorldBuilder meant map creation was of a similar difficulty, but rule changes required XML editing that was less user-friendly than rule editing in Civ3's editor, and more advanced changes required Python or C++ coding, essentially making it off-limits to non-programmers.

    Firaxis certainly could have been more flexible in the BIQ format without adding any significant complexity. Multiple building prerequisites, unit production requiring buildings, more than four eras, more than five world sizes, more flexible production bonuses for buildings (i.e. +15%), more than 32 civs, quite a few options that wouldn't really increase the complexity of modding at all (though building/unit prerequisites may have required some more AI work for the AI to properly take advantage of it). But it doesn't appear that "what might someone possibly want to edit?" was a major priority at the time.

    Yes, but unfortunately it's not quick to do so. Back in the day when I first developed the editor I had a 1280x800 screen and didn't appreciate the value of a UI that scales to the display. And as I programmed it with static widths, making it flexible would require reprogramming a fair chunk of the UI logic on that tab.

    I've also considered redoing the entire tab to have a more modern, truly flexible/scalable UI, as the current UI is not especially amenable to scaling (such as looking good on 4K displays). That would probably be more effort though, and I'm not sure if it would be worth it.

    The BLDG tab did get the proof-of-concept for that, as it is the first tab and was of an appropriately moderate complexity.

    What is that limit? I was not aware of it before.
     
  7. Laurana Kanan

    Laurana Kanan Don’t underestimate who I am.

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    That sounds familiar, I think I remember you mentioning this once before. No worries though. I've been so engrossed with Civ VI lately and only started messing around with one of my Civ III mods after Tony uploaded some new units that piqued my interest again.

    I'm assuming Oni means that a city can only build one of any unique building unlike say in VI where you can have multiple Neighborhood districts per city.
     
  8. Oni Ryuu

    Oni Ryuu King

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    On many editions to my games I have issued a large number of buildings and at certain points (I’ve not checked the number) the list of available buildings becomes shortened. I used to use two buildings called “prepare city defences “ and “restore normal operations” marked as “Replaces All Impr. with this Flag Checked” removing this option from power plants. I also used a number of other buildings with other uses but I have since reduced the list due to the game removing options from the list at random. I can’t help much because I haven’t tested the occurrence further. It’s somewhere beyond fifty improvements.
     
  9. Nathiri

    Nathiri Commander

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    Well something like adding more civs is a bit difficult I would think with the way civ3 is set up in having buttons. I would assume in my limited knowledge of scripting you can make it so it is automated in adding extra lines of code for more selections without having to account for it too much in your initial scripting and always consider what someone might want to do. But when you have it like civ3 it also adds a button and a different set of coordinates there is a "limit" of the graphical menu, unless they went with the way of scrolling like in civ4. Though I guess they could allow it continue going down then up, but it would get a bit messy and get in the way of the other options they have there. While a modder could rearrange the menu to make the buttons look okay for a good portion of the menu, it could still run into the other options and so Firaxis would of had to add the ability to change the coordinates of those. Then, you might as well have that available for most of the interface (which would of been great of course). Eras I would assume be similar to buildings requiring buildings as the buttons are already in place just have it continually going on. Having building requirements for units would probably require some AI understanding, since if it has a desire to build units, it needs to be told to do that first, but the building requiring a building was already made and could of just been made to easily add more requirements. More world sizes would end up like the more civs I would think too, unless scrolling was added.
     
  10. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    So I'm planning to post a thread in the main Civ III (and perhaps Civ IV) forums in a few weeks once it's about a month since release, but I'm curious what you think of it so far. I'm guessing mostly positive given being engrossed? I haven't picked it up yet. Civ4 taught me to be skeptical of Civ games on release (although I did like it after Beyond the Sword, it was just Vanilla that underwhelmed), and now that I check I didn't pick up Civ V until May 2012, 20 months after release. Which is actually later than I'd realized, but I was hooked on Civ III on 2010 and EU3 in 2011, so I guess it makes sense.

    Interesting. Well, if the limit is determined, I may be able to add a warning message to the editor once the limit is surpassed. Wouldn't surprise me if there is one given the limits on civs/units/cities.

    Scrolling takes a little more effort, but isn't really difficult. Civ III Conquests already implements it on the Espionage screen. I think it's more along the lines of they put an array such as civs[32] all over the code, and it would've been an effort to clean that up and re-test it.

    Alternately, make it possible to initiate diplomacy from the Espionage screen, and you don't need the Ctrl+D screen at all.
     
  11. Laurana Kanan

    Laurana Kanan Don’t underestimate who I am.

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    If you're planning on posting a new thread I'll reserve my comments 'til then. But, in short, I haven't been this enthused about a Civ game since C3C. I just could never get into IV or V - played each a few times, but always came back to III. I really got excited for VI watching the "Let's Plays" and reading about new info over at Antioch's site. It became something I needed to play the day it was released. One thing I will mention quickly is that I love the unpacking of cities in VI. Adds a whole new layer of planning and strategy.
     
  12. Oni Ryuu

    Oni Ryuu King

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    I make terrain improvements require several turns to build e.g. my airfields take twelve turns. I’d like to be able to do this for cities too.

    If I had it all my way I wouldn’t have city tiles at all; I’d have worker units construct buildings with a limit of improvements per tile measured in m₂ of available space. This accounts for farm land, pasture, housing, landfills and everything else that goes into a city. Each factory would have a certain amount of production and only capable of producing units permitted by its tools. Each factory would produce units independently of one another. I also want food and raw material to be exported in exact tonnage and I want roads to require physical maintenance.

    I realised I’m just describing a game I’ve been working on since college. Give me another decade and I’ll show you what I’m talking about.
     
  13. Blue Monkey

    Blue Monkey Archon Without Portfolio

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    Sooner or later we all bump up against a wall, whether it's allowable terrain types, number of cities, or something else. There's always going to be a limit (finite ability of the game engine to track the state of play)& as Quintillus points out it's going to approximate a power of two. This is fundamental to the way the hardware & software we have at the present time work. I say approximate because some bits and bytes may be reserved for other purposes, such as flagging player vs. AI owner, or the barbarian faction reducing the number of available civs to 31. Approximate also because some things were not fully implemented but were left buried in the code.* Quintillus and the other people who have extended our editing capabilities can find some of those things and add them, some will never be added to our design palette because they are incomplete enough to consistently crash the game, and some things the designers and developers were working on never got implemented at all before the game was taken out of their hands and published.

    -----------
    * Another example of the limit approximating the powers of two is terrain. There are 7 base terrains (grassland, plains, desert, tundra, coast, sea, ocean - flood plains is an overlay using desert graphics for a base rather than grassland). Not sure what the 8th bit is flagging. Maybe whether or not there is an overlay? Maybe standard vs. landmark? Or maybe there was some 8th terrain that was designed but never made it into the final code at all?
     
  14. Thrust123

    Thrust123 Prince

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    Hi, having problems opening my latest save games with the input from sav option. Launching the application with the launcher.
    Does this excerpt from the log file give any clue as to why:

    28117 [AWT-EventQueue-0] INFO Main - SAV file name: C:\General Gordon of the English, Week 36, 1883 AD.SAV.biq
    28119 [AWT-EventQueue-0] INFO Main - searching for biq...:
    28123 [AWT-EventQueue-0] ERROR com.civfanatics.civ3.biqFile.IO - ERROR:
    java.io.FileNotFoundException: C:\General Gordon of the English, Week 36, 1883 AD.SAV.biq (The system cannot find the file specified)


    Maybe I need to also put a copy of the Main Mod files (that include art and other folders) in unit C also?

    The error I get when trying to open this or any other save files (of other mods too like rise and rule) is:

    "The specified file (C:\General Gordon of the English, Week 36, 1883 AD.SAV.biq) could not be opened.
    Check that it is correctly spelled and that it's an uncompressed BIQ 12.08 that no other programs are using"
     
  15. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    This is actually fixed in the most recently released version, 1.04 (October 24th), but I missed the fix when uploading the changes for that version. At some point the ability to automatically add ".biq" when opening/saving files was added to better handle cases where the file extension was omitted (particularly for saving new BIQ files), but an exception to not do that when opening .sav files was missed. 1.04 adds that exception, so this should work again.

    I'll update the 1.04 release notice to include mention of this fix; if you're on an older version then updating should fix the issue.

    Actually, though it might make sense, terrains work a bit differently. The terrain for a tile is stored in a byte, which is split in half for the base terrain (as you describe) and the "real" terrain; for example, forest-on-plains has forest as the "real" terrain and plains as the "base" terrain. Plains-on-plains has plains as both the "real" and "base" terrain. Since each half gets half a byte, that's 4 bits (or a "nibble" to use the technical term. Small computer units follow terms for eating small amounts of food). A nibble can store 2^4 unique values, or 16 values. So using Firaxis's scheme, there could be up to 16 unique terrains; there are 14 in Conquests.

    From a pure BIQ standpoint, you could have, say, forest as the base terrain and ocean as the "real" terrain, but that wouldn't make any sense in game, and it wouldn't surprise me if the game crashed if that were tried.

    Landmark is handled as one of the Civ3 Conquests Bonuses, which is 4 bytes containing flags for things such as Pine Forests and Snow-Capped Mountains in addition to the Landmark flag.

    Most of the details of this are at this thread at Apolyton (a few, including Landmark terrain, are not documented there; in the case of Landmark I figured it out by comparing BIQs with and without landmark terrain on tiles to spot the differences). Alas, the links within the thread broke with Apolyton's move from vBulletin 2 to vBulletin 4, but the browser search is still functional.
     
  16. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    Version 1.05

    Version 1.05 is now available. The main update is allowing painting of nearly all overlays on the map tab, using the paintbrush method rather than selecting improvements per-tile. Rivers are the exception, as additional custom code is needed for them due to their being along the edges of tiles rather than in the middle of tiles (as they were in Civ2).

    Download here.

    Changes:
    • You can now paint nearly all overlays on the map with a brush
    • Starting locations now support the "None" option as the owner properly
    • The map will no longer stop rendering if a player-owned start location is encountered when there is no custom player data
    There is also a shortcut, the 'O' key, to open up the select-overlay dialog while the map tab is visible. This complements 'C' for selecting the city brush, and 'T' for opening the select-terrain dialog.

    Player-owned starting locations with no custom player data are supported in the Firaxis editor. Version 1.05 will now work properly with these, although you can not yet change which player owns these start locations (e.g. Player 1, Player 7 - you can switch them to particular civs), as I need to do more research on how this should work first. But they'll be preserved as-is when saved, and the editor will function as expected when encountering them.

    Overlays that can be painted currently are:
    Code:
        IRRIGATION,
        MINE,
        ROAD,
        RAILROAD,
        FORT,
        BARRICADE,
        BARBARIAN_CAMP,
        GOODY_HUT,
        POLLUTION,
        CRATERS,
        VICTORY_POINT_LOCATION,
        RUINS,
        STARTING_LOCATION,
        RADAR_TOWER,
        AIRFIELD,
        COLONY,
        OUTPOST
    Starting Locations default to having an owner of None. Other colony-type overlays (airfields, colonies, and outposts) default to the first civ in the list of civs. Both default to the owner of the tile they are placed on if that tile already has an owner.
     
  17. Blue Monkey

    Blue Monkey Archon Without Portfolio

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    :D I knew while I was writing it that you'd have an answer much more detailed and pointing out all the errors in my guesses based on general understanding rather than (as you are) being elbows deep in the code. I always enjoy hearing from you how things really work. In this case your corrections give me a lot more food for thought about how the game engine handles terrain. If I could only pick one base vs. real terrain element to change it would be to allow mountains/hills/volcanoes on any base terrain. Main point still stands - there are always going to be some kind of limits & those limits are somehow related to powers of two because of the nature of computer hardware & software.

    Huzzah! I keep getting a few maps closer & closer to being ready to process - closer to tectonic than to glacial speed. New versions don't delay them. Quite the opposite - more capabilities = more interest in scenario design = more reason for me to wrap up work on them and get them posted for others to mess around with.

    I suspect it's another case where your hands are tied after a certain point. Playing connect the dots with tile vertices to draw rivers is the way Firaxis gave us to do it. You can only deviate from that so much.

    Keep up the good work!
     
  18. Oni Ryuu

    Oni Ryuu King

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    Hi Quintillus.
    Do you know if none nuclear missiles can be targeted by the Strategic Missile Defence in your editor?
    Is the Nuclear Weapon attribute required for the code to use the SMD or can you trick the game with the AI Strategies?
     
  19. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    I haven't personally tested that, but I would assume that works the same as in the Firaxis editor - for SMD to target a weapon, it must be a (non-tactical?) nuclear weapon under Unit Abilities. You could experiment with setting strategies to ICBM/tactical nuke and seeing if the missile defence works against those, but I'd consider it a bug in Civ3 (though a potentially useful one) if the SMD did apply in that case.

    Although even if that doesn't work, it could be interesting seeing how the AI uses non-nuclear missiles with that strategy. To be honest I've hardly seen the AI use cruise missiles, due to their being so late in the game.
     
  20. Thrust123

    Thrust123 Prince

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    SEE EDIT BELOW (actually working but invalid save game)Working now, thanks. For future versions I would request if possible add ability to a) Change game speed settings (ie from Normal to Marathon) b) Change the current date/turn of the saved game backwards. Thanks for your work.

    EDIT: I edited a save file and saved it BUT when trying to load in game it says invalid save file. Tried this with several save files and still the same ....
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2016

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