Discussion in 'Civ2 - Scenario Creation' started by Skuall, Oct 5, 2001.
Not with ToTPP there aren't.
I've corrected that bit to say MGE. Metro has talked about doing a ToT version one day so if he does, that's good to know that ToTPP allows for more than 6 lol. How many more does it allow??
Ah, sorry man, I have to struggle to even use TOT as I barely touched it. I'll sure as hell not go any further than that.
Well then I guess if a ToT version ever happens it'll be my doing haha. Converting it is easy (especially if Grapetit does it for us haha) however having to redo ALL the graphics in all the dll files.. umm yeah don't hold your breath people lol.
Anyway I just realised that I forgot to put in a city building list into the big 100th post so I've just edited the post and put the list in for people to check out.
Vanilla ToT adds a seventh set for a Renaissance-era triggered by the Invention tech. With ToTPP, there are options to define individual city sets for each civ, including barbarians, per map!
Well, I wouldn't pay too much attention to that as there are only six factions in HoMM2. The more you add, the more you drift away.
Yeah.. but that's good for me to know though. As while it probably won't happen (unless heaps of people demand it lol) I've talked with Metro about me making a HoMM1 mod for our scenario one day and then maybe even try making a HoMM3 and HoMM4 version of it too. These later 2 would definitely require a ToT conversion as they were both made in 24bit colour and have higher resolution assets than HoMM1-2. HoMM3 has 9 different factions and so many more units so it would require some serious trickery only ToTPP can give. However I doubt I'll bother though as Tom2050's HoMM3 Civ3 mod is amazing and I'm looking to wind up all my Civ2 projects and move on. I don't wanna take on new ones haha. The HoMM1 mod is more likely as HoMM1 & HoMM2 are so darn similar and it would just be a terrain, city icon & unit pack, and certainly NOT all the dlls and wonder videos haha.
Oh and this is old news now but I've created a ModDB page for this project here:
Time for another update.. a way overdue one! Firstly I must be honest and say that not a huge amount of work has been done on this project since my last post in May last year. 2020 was a rough year for many people and sadly I didn't escape its unpleasantness and had a few setbacks that took an emotional toll on me resulting in months of inactivity on all my projects. However late last year I got back into them and did a truck load of work on my C&C and Red Alert 2 scenarios getting them towards a near release position, and of course also did some work on this project such as finalising the sounds for all the units (and a few other things ), making some more unit special ability balance adjustments, and I also finished work on testing technologies (making sure you can research from start to finish with no glitches) and giving them all custom graphics.
Speaking of technologies that's something we haven't really talked about much so far, so lets do it now. @Metro Polis has painstakingly designed an awesome custom tech tree for this mod where all units, buildings and magical range weapons are obtained via 8 schools of research (mostly inspired by HoMM2 hero secondary skills) with 7 levels in each school. Default Civ2 only has 5 schools however thankfully they have 4 levels with different icons which meant I had access to more than 5 slots allowing me to make the required 8 icons thankfully.
So here’s the final product! Some icons are from the spell tree while other ones are custom ones I made where I cut a hero skill icon out from it's blue marble background and pasted it over a spell scroll background to match the other spell icons. Also the military one is actually a combination of 3 different HoMM2 spell icons!
So where are things at? Well all that's left to do now is creating a map & decorating it, final testing, writing up documentation, and then a tour video. Then it shall be released. But how long you ask..
Hmm well.. I hope I don't regret this as I suck at meeting deadlines and I don’t wanna be one of the endless people making false promises on this forum about their projects lol, but I believe now I'm at a stage with all my projects that I can say that this project will be finished and released within the next 3 months. If I fail to meet this deadline you can all kick my ass lol.
Nice job! Looking over the screenshots in moddb and I'm impressed by the amount of work you've done. It's a shame civ2 doesn't have an option to change the font & color of title on the panels. It's a game developed for various shades of gray backgrounds.
There's a YT channel (Celestial Heavens) with a couple of interviews with HOMM developers. A map-maker said it could take him a year to develop a good map with all the other stuff (events, units, etc.).
Thanks mate. Although unlike my other newer mod projects this project was a collaboration, and @Metro Polis deserves most of the credit for it. I just helped with little bits and pieces here and there.
But omg yes I would have LOVED to gain access to Civ2's font styles and colours. While it was a small annoyance with this project it was far more annoying with my Test of Time Graphics for MGE, C&C Scenario Remaster, and Red Alert 2 Siege of New York projects as with all 3 projects I had to push the limits of how dark you can make MGE's interface before you can't read any of the text, and I wanted to go much darker. Even made a thread on this forum asking about it a while back but no one seemed to really know of an easy way.
Hahaha yeah it'll take me a little while to make the map however fortunately in this case the map is nearly all just decoration whereas in original HoMM they were interactive objects requiring defenders, and balancing of unit spawners and hero bonuses near starting positions etc. I remember 20 years ago I started making a map for HoMM2.. don't think I got very far haha.
I am going to try to make this Civ HoMM2 map as interactive as possible though. Eg monsters (assigned to barb faction) fortified in various places and on top of nice things (I believe barb units fortified in forts don't move around the map as I've seen the trick used in other scenarios so I intend to user that). Metro has also setup some cool event driven unit spawning buildings on the map too (Dragon city baby!). Even if players don't like my map and want to use this just as a mod for their own random maps then metros spawners will still appear which is cool (I'll write a guide to help people get all the events working on their maps).
Well I'm just impressed what the community managed to make with limited civ2 tools on hand.
How do you insert custom graphics into the DLL? Do the graphics need to be same size (e.g 640x480) as the original images?
Anyway for the "openciv2" project I've also been thinking:
- making custom RULES.txt which also defines (for each civ):
custom colors for flags with alpha setting (transparency)
- support for animated gif-s/sprite maps for units/tiles/cities (homm-style),
- custom fonts/colors for titles of panels and various other texts in the game,
- placing png/gif/jpgs of custom graphics into the scenario root folder so it replaces existing images from DLLs. If no images exist, it loads the GIF from DLL.
Think I talk about these programs with you once before over at RPGCodex as I recon you'd find them useful for your work. We used GifXtractor to insert our custom images into the DLLs. It's been a while since we did that part so I can't remember all the specifics but yes I think I could replace the images with ones that were a different resolution and used a different palette (needed as some images we replaced were black and white). However no matter what we did with sizes and colours the replacement MUST NOT exceed the original image file size inside the dll (GifX kindly shows you all the byte sizes of the images inside the dll) otherwise it would crash vanilla Civ2. I think I've seen people say that MGE is more tolerant than vanilla Civ2 but we played it safe. In cases where I replaced a background image that was black and white with a colour image I had to get really friggin creative to keep the file size smaller haha.
Even if that's wrong and MGE is not fine with different and larger file sizes I believe ToT is definitely perfectly fine with bigger stuff inserted into it's DLLs however GifX will not let you exceed sizes as it was built for classic Civ2 so you need a different program called Resource Hacker if you plan to insert bigger stuff into ToT DLLs. I also ended up needing Resource Hacker a couple of time for our MGE scenario as sometimes I'd get a weird error in GifX on the last image in some dlls files and it just wouldn't let me replace it so I had to use Resource Hacker to get the job done!
For more info on how we pushed images into the DLLs and also created custom wonder/intro/death videos and animating diplomacy heralds I made or bumped a number of threads a while back to help others in the future who wanted to the do the crazy things Metro & I did. You can find them here....
Diplomacy images in dll:
Custom wonder/intro/death videos:
Custom heralds and transparency issues:
In the Herald thread you can see how Metro figured out a way to make diplomacy leader faces animate using the herald video layer haha! CRAZY stuff!!
The custom rules for different Civs would be cool although you'd still need compatibility with the traditional system to load scenarios and their rules.txt files. I remember ToT sticks a lot of extra stuff into the rules.txt file compared to MGE so if they can do it so can you haha. Being able to load images from a folder or zip file instead of a dll would be friggin awesome! And yeah once again as you say setting it to use the old way if it can't find the new way is the best way to go!
Better support for custom GUI images, fonts, sizes etc in a Civ2 clone would certainly entice modders like me to design custom GUIs for our scenarios to use with Civ2 Clone. The limits in classic MGE & ToT are very annoying!
Oh and for anyone stumbling into this conversation wondering what on earth we're talking about. Axx is working on a Civ2 clone project over in this thread:
I used GifXtractor to get memory offsets of GIFs in DLLs for my clone project but I had no clue you could also replace gifs. I've been slacking from this forum for too long and I'm catching up on stuff that's been going on. Really impressive what you guys have done.
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