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Cross-Platform Editor for Conquests now available!

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

  1. Oni Ryuu

    Oni Ryuu Chieftain

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    Thanks, I’ll see if that works.
     
  2. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    @Oni Ryuu - Hmm, I'm having trouble reproducing that with my BIQs, but it that check is a little persnickety at times. It should always let you save with the safety level set to "None", however. If you had it set all the way to None and it still didn't work, that's definitely a bug; otherwise it may just be a touch over-sensitive. In theory that shouldn't have changed recently, but if you are seeing different notifications when doing the same tasks in 1.27 vs 1.28, that is good to know and I can try to reproduce it with the same steps.

    On the same topic, one of the features that I started but never rolled out all the way was notification of which fields the safety check believes are out-of-bounds. The GOVT tab will currently report that, if my memory is correct. I didn't roll it out to everything since it was rather time-intensive, and there wasn't a clamoring for rolling it out farther after the GOVT tab gained that functionality, but that is something that can be revisited.

    Whoops, I forgot that add/delete/rename doesn't come for free in the filterable lists, and didn't add it. There are two options:

    1. Version 1.27 supports adding new buildings.
    2. If you go to Preferences, and choose "Use Old Lists" and restart, you will be able to add/rename/delete buildings (but not filter them, or techs/units) in 1.28.

    I will add that to the filterable buildings later this week.
     
  3. Dewion_86

    Dewion_86 Chieftain

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    I just started using your editor and I did wonder why would you not make it possible to add buildings...:rolleyes:
    Thanks for the advise how to do it. :)
     
  4. Dewion_86

    Dewion_86 Chieftain

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    @Quintillus
    Also, in your editor it's not possible to delete citizen jobs, only add and rename them. Have you noticed this?
     
  5. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    Welcome! It's good to know you're using it, and involved in the Civ3 modding community! We're always happy to have more people here!

    I did, and I thought it was related to a limitation in Civ3 when too many citizens got deleted, and punting on allowing deletion as a result, but now that I try it, Firaxis's editor allows me to delete all citizens. :hmm: I'm not sure that Civ3 would like a BIQ with no citizens, but I'll have to revisit this.
     
  6. Dewion_86

    Dewion_86 Chieftain

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    Civ 3 simply crashes if biq has no citizens. :lol:
    Sure it should be possible to delete citizens, if someone adds one too many by mistake, don't you think? :rolleyes:
     
  7. Oni Ryuu

    Oni Ryuu Chieftain

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    Hi Quintillus

    I just wanted to ask you about your progress with the saved .biq editing features or if you’ve stopped working on them. I specifically want to know if the PROP and DIFF sections will be available in the next couple of months.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019
  8. Blue Monkey

    Blue Monkey Archon Without Portfolio

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    Does the current version of the editor work with OSX 10.14 (no 32-bit support)?
     
  9. MartinLuther

    MartinLuther Really Dragon this Out

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    Hey Quintillus, I learned some people can crop maps and I've heard your editor can crop maps but I haven't the foggiest idea how to do it with your editor. How does one do that with your editor?
     
  10. MartinLuther

    MartinLuther Really Dragon this Out

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    Sorry for the double post but I'm trying to open my mod in the editor and it's giving me this warning:



    This is very confusing to me because I haven't even touched building/technology headers and All I did for civilizations was change some names of Strings in the Civilizations tab. I thought maybe it was a character that was causing the problem but after removing all foreign characters, it still refuses to open the thing. Here's the log:

    Spoiler Log :

     
  11. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    My apologies for the extended absence. I became focused on another hobby during the government shutdown, and before I knew it, spring had sprung.

    I think you mean the topic we discussed off-and-on via PM last year, and SAV related work? If so, the answer to your specific question is no, but the answer to your general question is I haven't forgotten about .sav features, and although what I've done in the past three months is more along the lines of code to read (understand) more of SAV files. Which really supports more of a parallel idea than what you've mentioned directly.

    I don't have an OS X 10.14 system to test with, but so long as 64-bit Java is installed, it should work. The editor's .jar file can be run by either 32-bit or 64-bit Java, with no modifications.

    Alas, your source was mistaken. Cropping (or expanding) maps is on the list of "should be added" someday features, and the editor can add maps to scenarios without one, but I haven't added it yet, in part because some other tools already offer that. In particular, IIRC Steph's editor allows expanding/cropping (though not a lot of editing) of maps, and I want to say one of the older utilities does as well... maybe something in Civ3 MultiTool? Not sure about that, but I am fairly sure that Steph's editor has this option.

    That is an interesting error, and not one that I've seen much if at all before. After looking it up, it looks like there would be two ways to diagnose it - one, to upload the full log.txt file, or two, to upload/send via PM the BIQ file, and I could run through and see the full technical error message. The full message would start with either "Exception while extracing binary data", and on the following lines have a bunch of things like com.civfanatics.civ3. biqFile, etc. That section (until the technical details end) would also likely be sufficient to diagnose, or at least hone in on, the cause of the problem.

    The section where that message occurs is after the BIQ rules have been read, and while it's doing some post-processing on them. Unfortunately there is quite a bit of post-processing, so I'd need the details to say where in the post-processing the error occurred.
     
  12. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    Version 1.29

    Version 1.29 is now available! Changes:

    • Several improvements to OS X integration, such as shortcuts using Command instead of Ctrl, the application name being set properly, and the dock icon being set properly.
    • Fixed the BLDG "Unsafe Values" bug introduced in 1.28, as encountered by Oni_Ryuu and Dewion_86 at the end of page 53
    • Add/Delete/Rename now is available on the filterable version of the BLDG list
    • You no longer receive a scary (but innocuous) pop-up when reordering techs with Custom Player Data enabled
    • The editor no longer freezes if you select "Open" when the Civ3 Scenario Directory is set to a folder that doesn't exist
    • When comparing BIQ files (BIQ Compare tab), folders will automatically be created to the desired output folder if they don't exist

    Years ago, OS X integration was better than it is in 1.28, but some time during the years when I didn't have a Mac to test with, parts of it had stopped working. Now, parts of it work better than they ever did (Command/Ctrl), and other parts are back up to where they used to be. I am aware that the editor not using the system menu bar by default is still a deficiency. You can have it use the system menu bar by setting the Look and Feel in Settings to System and restarting - but this causes other graphical issues that were sufficient so that it didn't make sense to make that the default.

    Otherwise, the updates are a number of bug fixes. There also has been a considerable amount of work on behind-the-scenes features - in the not-too-distant future, I plan to write up the vision of the editor's direction for the next year or so - but the fruits of those seeds are not yet ready for harvest.

    There also is going to be a 1.29 XP version, in the vein of 1.24 XP. But that may be of interest to those running Windows in general, as it introduces the other significant new feature of 1.29 - making the editor the default .biq editing program on your system. That is inherently an operating-specific feature, and will be debuting on Windows due to the machines I had on hand when developing it. Stay on the lookout for a future post with information on that feature.
     
  13. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    Version 1.29 - Windows

    This is a special Windows build that integrates a couple of new features, namely:

    • You can make this editor the default BIQ editing program on your system
    • BIQ files that you open/save in the editor will show up in Windows' Recent Files list

    You can download this version here.

    The process for setting the editor as the default BIQ program varies slightly by operating system. For Windows XP (and similarly, Vista/7), the process is described below:

    Spoiler :

    First, right-click on a BIQ in Windows Explorer, and select Open With -> Choose Program:

    You won't already have Windows_Editor as an option; I've been testing the process and thus it's pre-populated on my system.

    The, select Browse:


    Navigate to the location where you downloaded the editor, and select Window_Editor.bat, and then Open:


    Finally, check "Always use the selected program to open this type of file", and click OK:


    You can follow the same process, but selecting Firaxis's editor, if you wish to switch back to the Firaxis editor as your default.


    After you've set the editor as your default BIQ editing program, you can open any BIQ in the editor by double-clicking the BIQ in Windows Explorer. Due to the nature of how it works, there will be a command prompt window that will hang around in the background as the editor runs, but you can ignore it (or see what's going on behind the scenes if you're curious). It also may take slightly longer for the editor to start than usual; this is because it is opening the BIQ as well as starting up, which takes a little more time.

    The Recent Files list shows up in different places in different versions of Windows, as well as based on your Start menu configuration. But the basic idea is it's easy to re-open what you've worked on recently. The following shows editor-opened BIQ files showing up in the Windows XP Recent Documents list, when using the Classic Start Menu (95/NT 4.0 style):

    Spoiler :


    From a technical standpoint, the default-start program support comes in the form of a Windows batch script, and the Recent Files support is a separate C program from the editor, which in turn calls the Win32 API. Thus these are both, at this point, Windows-specific. I'd be open to the possibility of having Mac/Linux variants as well, but it will be demand-based, and I'm personally going to use the Windows variant by far the most.
     
  14. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    Editor Direction - 2019/2020

    As you may have noticed, the pace of editor updates has slowed down in 2019. This isn't the first time that has happened; usually that means I'm taking a break and doing other things instead, or on hiatus from CFC for a few months. That was a contributing factor at the start of this year, too, but the lack of updates has also been part of a directional shift. I've discussed this once or twice in PMs, but I think it's now time to share that direction in the thread.

    For a long time, the focus of the editor was, "match Firaxis's functionality in a cross-platform fashion." More and more of Firaxis's functionality was matched, and life was good. There was a time when I wondered, "will 1.00 be the last version, aside perhaps from a few bug fixes, if 1.00 means matching Firaxis functionality?" But the editor had always taken a bent of "don't restrict things if there's no reason to restrict things", which allowed some options that Firaxis's editor did not (e.g. landmark terrains of all types), and as Firaxis parity was met, the focus shifted to "make modding easier with convenient features". This has more or less been the focus the past few years.

    Lately, the focus has started to shift towards, "expand the possibilities of modding through SAV/BIQ integration". This is already somewhat visible through the "Update Scenario rules" window (under the "SAV Actions") menu. That feature, however, is not a one-off, but instead the harbinger of where I see the editor going, and indeed where it's already started to go behind the scenes. There's really a confluence of factors causing me to consciously change direction at this time:

    • It's just cool to think of the possibilities, if something such as changing rules or events could happen in Civ. There have been various threads on this at CFC, and I have thoughts on it in text files dating back many years at this point. However, the hurdle was so high, that this reason alone never was enough before.
    • I could continue to make scenario editing slightly easier here and there, through features such as creating a BIQ from a BMP. But, let's face it; it's 2019 and the number of new Civ3 scenarios per year isn't very high. Most modders are already experienced modders, and making it 10% easier to make a mod with the same features is unlikely to make or break whether someone creates a mod at this point in time.
    • My technical skills have increased over the years, so the hurdle to pushing the boundaries and introducing "new functionality", while still high, no longer seem quite so high as they used to
    • Perhaps the best contribution I could make towards the community at this point is enabling things that weren't previously possible. Or put another way, if something is going to motivate more people to mod, it isn't better ease of modding, but expanded possibilities in modding.

    Add them all up, and it becomes, "if I'm ever going to try to add dynamic rules/events, or at least make some new features possible in Civ3, this is the time to do it." The community may not be very large anymore, but is still large enough that it could probably do some cool things with the ability to script some custom events. And I've reached a technical level where I can see a path through the forest - even if there are rodents of unusual size posing a hazards along the way - while perhaps also having enough time to make something of it before reaching that point that many of us encounter, where life responsibilities mandate a retirement from modding.

    So to quote Nathiri,
    If it's going to happen, that's as good of a timeline goal as any!
     
    Adrain, Oni Ryuu and Nathiri like this.
  15. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    Editor Direction - 2019/2020 (Technical Details)

    (See the overview above, as well as version 1.29 farther above)

    To accomplish some form of event scripting by the end of 2020 (ideally before then, realistically it will likely be incremental), there are a bunch of tasks to accomplish. I've already started on these, and would estimate most of the work on the editor this calendar year has been related to them:

    - Full support for reading and writing SAV files. There's just too much information in them to ignore them, if worthwhile bounds are going to be pushed.
    - A scripting language, and support in the editor (or a spinoff thereof) for reading those scripts, seeing if conditions in the scripts are met, and if so, applying the effects of those events.
    - Some sort of method for keeping track of which events have already happened
    - Notification to the user of when to reload
    - Ideally, the ability to apply some event effects without reloading.

    Other than the third one, at least minimal exploratory work has been undertaken on all of them. The fourth one is relatively easy, if simple notifications are sufficient. And thus, I'm focusing on the first two initially.

    Full support for SAVs is a big chunk of work, but relatively low uncertainty. Other than the diplo relations section (which I haven't quite made heads or tails of) it's generally more complex than BIQ, and somewhat less well-defined, but still relatively well-known. This one is simply a matter of time.

    I have some prototypes for a proposed scripting language, which is event driven. In short, you'd define an event, with triggers (e.g. year = 1400; Construction known by > 5 civs, etc.), effect (update RULE section; spawn a bunch of barbarians in this area, etc.), a chance of happening (100% per turn; 10% per turn, etc.), and some ancillary condition based on what the trigger of effect are (some triggers/effects will need additional info, such as "what type of unit should be spawned?"). This could be built out gradually, and I would expect initially there would be a very limited set of triggers and effects, gradually becoming more and more rich.

    It will likely be at least six months until an end-to-end system involving steps 1 and 2 is ready, although limited previews before then may wind up being possible. But my thinking has increasingly lead me towards something like this being the best goal to work towards, while work on other sections of the editor takes on a secondary role in the meantime.

    ------------

    I should also note that "secondary" doesn't necessarily mean "zero". There will likely still be things that pique my interest enough for me to work on something else for a short time, and one long-wished-for feature in particular - undo functionality - has a proof-of-concept already made. So there may still be updates to the editor, and you're welcome to suggest traditional editor features as well. But if it seems like they're playing second fiddle, the focus described above would be why.
     
    Adrain, Civinator, Wolfhart and 2 others like this.
  16. Blue Monkey

    Blue Monkey Archon Without Portfolio

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    Trying to get back to doing some map editing. Apparently I can dl Java 12 easily, but if I want an older version have to jump through all sorts of Oracle account hoops. Do the editor & java 12 play nice with each other?
     
  17. Quintillus

    Quintillus Archiving Civ3 Content Supporter

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    Not with Oracle's Java 12, unfortunately, as they removed some features that the editor depends on for various functionality, including reorderable lists and downloading units. In the 20+ year history of Java, nothing had ever been removed, so I hadn't anticipated that when writing those features. Now that they're there, re-writing them in the (older) technology that remains would mean any future work would grind to a halt.

    I'm currently validating another Java vendor's Java 12 version (which did not remove the functionality the editor uses), but in the meantime I've mirrored the current Java 8 downloads so you and others can download it, now that Oracle isn't allowing anonymous downloads. The mirrors are:

    64-bit Windows (.exe)
    32-bit Windows (.exe)
    64-bit Mac (.dmg)
    64-bit Linux (.rpm)
    32-bit Linux (.rpm)
     
  18. Blue Monkey

    Blue Monkey Archon Without Portfolio

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    Thank you!
     
  19. Vuldacon

    Vuldacon Dedicated to Excellence Supporter

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  20. Adrain

    Adrain Chieftain

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    Hi Quintillus.

    I posted the quoted post in another thread (Meet the Modders) recently and Blue Monkey was kind enough to point me to you, and this thread particularly. Are you able to share where the value of how much progress has been made towards the latest TECH is stored. I imagine it's within the LEAD object but I haven't got much further than that so far. It would save me from jumping through hoops to determine its location.

    May I say that I really appreciate the work you've done. It's really cool to have such tools available, developed by community amateurs.
     

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