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Quick and dirty Lua Modding for Napoleon I?

Discussion in 'Civ2 - Scenario League' started by Konig15, Dec 17, 2019.

  1. Konig15

    Konig15 Warlord

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    I keep coming up with ideas of how to create scenarios, but....I'm not interested in playing Napoleon I as intended. I've changed the rules so that no buildings get destroyed on conquest, I'm changing up the buildings in the capitals, I'm making it so Constantuburies can be built anywhere, but I'm only building them in France.

    as far as lua event modding goes I have some questions:
    1. Can I just just use delete event to refresh the save files use of events like a normal events swap? Like Red Front and Fading Lights, where you have to change the events every couple of turns? Or can lau not be changed once the scenario starts?
    2. I want to create a lau event where every time the French take a city there's a 10% chance it will spawn a plunder unit. I want more plunder.
    3. I'm tired of savescummming to try and bloody my not-veterans into veteran status. It's too much work. I'd rather create an event where French units of all types can get under a leader, press K, and you pay 30 gold if Elan is still active and 50 if it's expired, the unit loses all but one hit point, all movement points for the turn, and becomes a veteran. And my increase that by ten gold for the non-Napoleon leaders. Maybe also it can't be in a city unit.
    4. I want to modify the mortar unit to be able to fire from both siege works AND cities. I see the ven, I just don't know how to include cities.

    I like the Europeans Powers track, and I'm loving the diplomacy as I've seen it thus far. It's just...man that the first turn frustrates the hell out of me. Also, it makes me not want to commit any Light infantry to battle ever because 24 units is not a lot. Even using the chaussures horse unit for coastal defense seems preferable, despite a HUGE increase in cost.

    Thank you for the help.

    EDIT: first Lua problem. the admin bonus are IMO horrible. I'm spending money, and I'm not getting veterans and I' not getting NONES. I modded Nappy's to create veterans and nones, and the homecity = Paris was easy to change to None and it woked.. Then I tried it with Soult.
    His lua for homecity was {homeCity = findCityByName("Strasbourg"), veteran = true}), so I changed it to homecity = none. Now I'm getting an ' expected near ' error. What the hell is that?Hoe do I find it, and how do I fix it?

    EDIT2: Changed it back to {homeCity = findCityByName("Strasbourg") and that worked. I still want those guys to be NONEs though. So what is find city by name and why does taking it out give me an expected near error?
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2019
  2. Knighttime

    Knighttime Warlord

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    @Konig15 Based on many of your recent posts, it sounds like you have big ambitions and grand dreams of the Civ2 scenario (or type of scenario) you would like to build. That's great -- having a bold vision is admirable, and all great scenarios start with the designer's vision. I'm always pleased to see and try out new Civ2 scenarios -- there aren't nearly as many of them, these days, as I wish there were.

    Unfortunately, though, several of your posts (this being one example) also seem to go down the path of throwing stones at other people's work. Perhaps this isn't intentional, but it's the impression I get from what you write. Some constructive criticism, delivered calmly, certainly isn't a bad thing. But a list of "here's all the ways I'm breaking the rules, or making up my own, or want to change this" can easily come across as dismissive or disrespectful of the considerable effort put into the scenario by its creator. No one is forcing you to play every scenario exactly as the original author intended. If you want to alter the rules to suit your personal taste, that's up to you. But please don't imply that therefore the scenario in its original form must be poorly designed or deficient, just because you want it to be different.

    You want city improvements to survive conquest more often.... you want fewer restrictions on building new improvements... you want more plunder... you want more/easier veterans... you want broader use of mortar units... you want more units without a home city... Basically all of these sound to me like you simply want the scenario to be easier. Again, it's important for you to have fun! and tweaking things to make it more fun for yourself is absolutely fine. But in many scenarios, substantial effort was put into balancing all of the military, financial, research, and construction limitations so that winning would be a difficult challenge. It's OK to play a scenario and lose -- in fact, I think there's probably a lot that can be learned from that situation, more so than from a dominant victory. Even a loss doesn't mean you can't still have fun playing!

    Regarding Lua... it sounds like you would benefit greatly from working through Prof. Garfield's tutorials on Lua, focused directly on its usage within TOTPP. Here is a link to the forum thread: https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/totpp-get-started-with-lua-events.636192/ . If you're serious about building your own scenario, or want to unlock greater potential for customizing existing scenarios to your liking, gaining a true understanding of Lua would be tremendously valuable for you. To address your "first Lua problem", findCityByName() is a function call, and an "expected near" error is most likely a syntax error -- something in the code wasn't written correctly. It's certainly possible to remove that function call, but apparently not quite the way you did it. I honestly think you'd find the entire process less frustrating, and more rewarding, if you slowed down a little: take the time to learn some Lua basics, start with some simple scripts of your own and learn how to debug them, etc.

    Please understand that I really do want to see you succeed at your ultimate goal of being able to build and release your own scenario that fulfills your vision. So my comments above aren't intended to discourage you or chase you away, but rather to point you in the direction that gives you the best chance of being successful.
     
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  3. Konig15

    Konig15 Warlord

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    OK, going to bed, but yeah.... I have different design philosophies than a lot of scenario designers, I'm not saying the Napoleon is bad, no, it's great, and there are a TON of good ideas. I'm having a good time listening to people rag on Rise of Skywalker while making towns all over the enemy's territory, cause in Nappy, you build a mining improvement and cobbled road (RR) on grassland with a shield, production goes from one to SEVEN. I gonna make this scenario HARD. I just want more production, more improvements, more I'm building improvements everywhere and right now, on turn 1, before I save it as new scenario, France is gonna be 400 gold in the hole PER TURN, gonna be a real challenge. I'm tricking out the core cities, which you return after treaties, to be production machines, and the not losing improvement is benefiting the AI as much as myself, at least when it comes to preserving the ability of the AI to not be crippled by taking their cities and well, seeling off their most expensive improvements on the way out. LOOTING IS FUN.

    From my perspective, I savescum for two reasons: to get veteran status for NONE units can keep my expensive artillery units from being destroyed utterly. The k command to summon artillery shells is the best thing I've ever seen in Civ 2. Now I just need to build/discover a training function that's balanced for the scenario in question and it's all gravy. I don't have to savescum ever again.

    Also, Totall, if you read this, I've been having a blast reading through military units entries on the wiki. I'm learning a LOT, in fact, to illustrate how little I know about the Napoleonic Wars, I didn't know Austerlitz was in December. I thought from the depictions in Bill and Ted and all the Paintings, it was in the summer or fall. None of the painting give a winter vibe. But you and I have different philosophies went it comes to city development. You want way WAY less and I want way WAY more. But the fact you include a means to declaring war on Turkey is AWESOME. Also, leader bonuses are insane. I know it's nitpick, but I'd like to be able to do more with thr Hussars, namely build them and RAID (sabotage). But the wonderful thing is this isn't Tabletop RPG, we don't HAVE to agree, you have your vision, and I can twist it to mine, for my purposes while yours is the one that the public knows.

    Just know, there are times when I think things are bad, but I'm the kid that always has to have their burger made exactly there way. I won't buy pizza from a nearby Italian pub I like because their seven topping pizza allows no substitutions. No substitutions, no sale, end of story. When it comes to leisure, I will have no consensus, I will have it my way and my way alone. I'm not being negative about your wonderful scenario, I just want to tweak the edges. And even modding it, I'm enjoying very greatly.
     
  4. JPetroski

    JPetroski Deity

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    Sorry. Misread. If you saw what I wrote, apologies. I took your post the wrong way.

    Napoleon is great for the same reason Red Front is great - it's hard. I haven't had an AI kick my butt as hard as Napoleon's did the first time I played it in ages. I had a blast just trying to survive. Of course after a few tries I got the hang of it (and now these gents have made it harder partially as a result - "Wait? Petroski could invade England?? Oh this won't do at all.") You should consider investing more time playing as it is intended as the reward of final victory is quite satisfying with this top notch scenario.
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2019
  5. tootall_2012

    tootall_2012 Prince

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    Hi Konig15,

    I think most designers will agree we have a particular attachment to our creations because in many cases we spent a considerable amount of time and effort in researching, designing, developing and testing them.

    For my part, and most of the other designers whose scenarios they asked me to test, we’ve always been open to constructive criticism and suggestions on how to better improve the final product. I’m currently working on a v1.3 of Napoléon precisely based on feedback from players.

    We certainly can, at time, disagree with this or that decision but in the end we all respect the designer’s final choices as it remains their vision. In the case of Napoléon, if you’ve read my development thread, and Knighttime can attest, you will see that a considerable amount of thought was put into why I designed the scenario the way I did. That you have a different vision is completely fine but it isn’t one that I share for my project, and that is also okay.

    I certainly have no problem with someone making adjustments to their own personal version of a particular scenario. I think we all probably have done the same to one extent or another to a scenario we had a particular affinity for but we felt just missed that extra touch.

    It sounds from your recent threads that you definitely have your own views on how a scenario should work and that is great. I believe our little community always encourages potential new designers to work on a project that is near and dear to their heart. As Knighttime indicated, there aren’t that many of us left to do so, and we are always happy and pleased when a new project is released.

    In that respect, I think you may find it much more rewarding to work on a creation that is all your own, than attempt to modify existing works. It’s why I originally started designing in the first place, not because I didn’t enjoy or appreciate playing other peoples work, but because I wanted to work on projects that were of a particular interest to me and I had a specific vision of how they should look and play.

    It doesn't matter if that particular subject has been covered a dozen times before, as long as you bring your own special take and vision to it.

    If desiging your own scenario is not a path you are ultimately interested in, only you can decide. If modding existing scenarios for you own personal enjoyment is what interests you that is also fine. But that would limit your ability to share your creation, as I doubt most designers would agree to have their creations significantly redesigned and re-released by another designer (which is different from converting an MGE scenario to make it compatible with TOT, which is always welcomed).

    I hope this helps you better understand, at least, my own views on the subject.
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2019
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  6. Konig15

    Konig15 Warlord

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    I get it. I'm not ready to make my own scenarios just yet. I am inspired by the events and mechanics other people do, and I like tweaking them to my heart's content. I have ambition, but I don't have the technicals. Even cutting and pasting other Lua events is really helpful in that regard. Just that last night I discovered Lua can be modded on the fly and doesn't need a EventDelete.exe makes me very, very happy.


    I have creative interests, but right now I'm struggling with years of sleep apnea and getting adjusting to a Bipap and a lack of technical skills. I'm hoping to start getting cracking in substantial ways come January, or maybe February. Until then at least I'm awake enough to enjoy games again. It was that nine months ago I just kinda zombified there, and while I'm not listening to audiobooks, I am listening to the de facto podcasts of some youtubers I like.


    Just two cents on redesign versus original:

    1. Does using assets count? I can't make assets at ALL, I have no artistic talent there. If I made a Civil War scenario, I'd want to use pre-existing units, preferably a lot of yours from house divided.

    2. What about maps? Like of I were to use your Civil War map, it wouldn't be yours when I got done with it. I'd expand in map editor to give as much of the West and Mexico as possible, even if I had to add in the terrain by hand. And I'd bring the brambles top cotton fields feature of an older civil war scenario.

    3. What about concepts? If I made my own Napoleon scenario, I would start in 1792, if not 1789, and go through the entire French Revolution, but I'd STILL have Nappy have the admin bonuses, and more or less have his generals give their leadership bonuses. I'd have a lot fewer flavor units if I could manage it, but I love the European Powers track, and I think the unit stats are very well balanced as is the road/RR multipliers. Those things I would like to take if I made my own French Revolution scenario. In fact, I love the European Powers track so much I want it for nearly every scenario I was thinking of. It's a perfect way to simulate building a professional army in peace time or building retinues in medieval settings or building an army of exiles like Polish Forces in the West, Free French troops, or Flying Tigers in China.


    I will respect the informal rules here, I just need a bead on where the lines are for these things. I DO NOT want to step on toes in a community that has been nothing but kind and supportive to me.
     
  7. Prof. Garfield

    Prof. Garfield Deity Supporter

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    1. You should be able to simply replace events.lua in the scenario folder, and things will work. You might run into some trouble with the state variable, but that is very unlikely. We change the events.lua every few turns in Over the Reich without issue.

    2-3. By lessons 4-5 of my Lua lessons, you should be able to do this kind of stuff. You probably don't have to modify existing code, just add new code in civ.scen.onKeyPress and civ.scen.onCityTakend.

    4. I'm not familiar with the Napoleon code, but somewhere in it, they will check if a unit is allowed to create a munition. You will have to make a change to say if it is a mortar and in a city, it can fire.

    Try homeCity=nil or just erase the homeCity entry entirely (remember the ',' after it also). nil is a special value in Lua.

    The Lua code expects a 'city object' to be the value associated with a home city. But, Knighttime and Tootall wanted to refer to cities by their name in their code, so they use the function findCityByName to convert it. If you simply remove findCityByName("Strasbourg"), then you're writing something the computer doesn't understand, since it isn't formatted correctly, so the interpreter is suggesting what might be missing. If Paris was treated differently, then they might have made the variable Paris refer to the city object elsewhere in their code.

    I'm really not sure why you're playing Over the Reich, Napoleon, or A House Divided anyway. You've said that you don't like losing and that you like building up your civilization. Yet, instead of asking someone to point you in the direction of scenarios like Colonialism, Colonies, or Imperialism, you suggest changes to war scenarios that are either outside their intended scope, or upset the balance.

    Civilization II was designed primarily for building a civilization into its 'golden age.' Those kinds of scenarios don't really need TOTPP with Lua to be good. With this new tool, we are focusing on things that have been difficult or impossible to do, or that have required compromises or extensive house rules to accomplish. If you want a 'golden age' project that could be improved with Lua, try converting A Soaring Spirit to ToT and Lua and implement the house rules. It shouldn't be too difficult to achieve.
     
  8. Konig15

    Konig15 Warlord

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    OK, so why play a losing scenario? Well, I want to be rewarded for playing SMART, husbanding resources and wining attrition with my enemies. And the way I'm modding the Nappy scenario, I'm making pretty brutal: I'm setting up Towns with cobbled roads inside Coalition cores where one of these produce SEVEN shields per turn, as well as 2 food and three trade. And I'm giving them manufacturing and Hydro plants, something I'm not doing in non-Coalition Cores. They are going to build and build QUICKLY, I got Vienna to have like 78 shields per turn just by building towns on grassland shields. I mean yeah, I'm decking out a few French cities, mostly giving them dockyards so technically I CAN build ships most anywhere, but it's costing me a fortune, I'm going to need to survive by plunder and economic development, and do so QUICKLY. If you have a dockyard in Napoleon I, it's 6 francs per turn, if you do money market, you need to be producing six shields net just to stay afloat It's EXPENSIVE. I'm still balancing the issues.

    OTR I don't see about losing. Actually JPetroski had a wonderful idea that I can play myself in a multiplayer game (I didn't even know you could do that), and that sounds cool as heck. And as far as House Divided not being a scenario appropriate for building, this is the Civil war going into the post Civil War. This was the era of the Homesteader act, the land grant universities. Almost every great idea of the antebellum period that had been blocked by the South became law. Witness this:
    https://www.essentialcivilwarcurriculum.com/the-republican-party-to-1865.html

    THAT'S the Civil War I want to play out. I doubt I could take federal revenues up 25X fold from April 1861 to1865, but I'd love to give it a try.
     
  9. tootall_2012

    tootall_2012 Prince

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    Hi Konig15,

    Having to deal with sleep apnea, or any related health problems is always difficult. I wish you the best of luck in that regard.

    You can absolutely re-use assets, be they units, icons or terrain files (though typically designers will pick and choose which ones suits them best).

    You can find plenty of such graphics either in the various threads or download section here on CivFanatics or the Scenario League Website, or in the multitude of scenarios out there.

    Just whenever possible give recognition to the author if you know who they are or a general thanks’ if you don’t.

    Same principle for maps, you can re-use them from other scenarios or from map resources found on various sites. If it’s not your design or you modified it to fit your own scenario just give an acknowledgement in your credits.

    You are free to re-use my Civil War map as a basis for your own design though you will have to make it bigger if you intend to include Mexico and the West (if it helps, I’ve attached the original map I used to create my map).

    Same principle again, just acknowledge others contribution when you clearly use some specific, or new or innovative idea. For example, just to name a few, we re-used the munitions, city building production restriction and leader administrative bonuses concepts from John Petroski's & Grisnach Caesar. The city switching idea came from a concept McMonkey and John were planning on implementing in their Rise of Macedon scenario. Prof. Garfield's HELP tab functionality was taken from OTR and adapted for Napoléon.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. Knighttime

    Knighttime Warlord

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    Thank you for this, I think that's a great attitude and starting point for the conversation.

    So first of all, if you want to mod scenarios for your own personal enjoyment, and not (re-)release them or share them, go right ahead. I would just encourage you to be a little less brazen in the forums about all the changes you're making, and focus more on the things you liked about each scenario.

    The remainder of this post discusses scenarios that you would like to release to the public.

    It's quite possible that each scenario designer has their own ideas about where they would "draw the line". So I think that's rule #1: the original designer's wishes are paramount. If you have a scenario in mind that you want to devote some time to reworking, I'd actually encourage you to reach out to them with a private message, rather than a public post, to get their reaction. True, many of them are no longer active in these forums, but for those that are, respecting their preference is key.

    If you want a scenario to be well-regarded by the community as your own work, I'd really suggest that you start by conceptualizing it independently. If you look at Napoleon and think, "How would I like to change this?", it's hard to avoid the end result being a close or direct derivative. On the other hand, if you start by thinking about the elements you'd like to see in a scenario covering this topic, and hunt around for all the resources out there from this general era of history, you're more likely to end up with something unique that isn't just a seasoning on someone else's dish, but is your own recipe. Also, it's probably obvious, but there's a big difference in releasing a French revolution scenario entitled (as an example) "Liberté, égalité, fraternité" and releasing one called "Napoléon I, expanded and improved". :) Don't try to piggyback on a name given by another designer.

    After that: think about how plagiarism works for writing a school report. You can't bulk-copy entire paragraphs from a single source, change the word order a bit and add your own two-line intro, and call it original content. But it's perfectly legitimate to have sources for your work, to which you give appropriate credit. As much as possible, try to can integrate assets, concepts, and code from multiple sources. In my mind, ideal sources are those that were released as libraries and intended all along to be resources for other creators -- for example, terrain graphics at http://users.tpg.com.au/jpwbeest/jp_terrain.htm or threads like https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/ww2-unit-graphics.409277/.

    Graphical assets get reused and repurposed all the time in new scenarios. You're certainly not alone in feeling like your artistic skills aren't up to the task of building your own assets from scratch! Many icons have the creator's initials or logo in the corner, and be sure to leave those intact. Again, I think a good guideline is to try and limit the quantity of assets you are copying from a single source, and to diversify your sources as much as possible.

    A map itself is probably fair game, if you're talking about the underlying terrain and not all the "developments" (roads, cities, mines, etc.) added by a scenario creator. Especially if you are going to be expanding or editing the map, you're probably pretty safe here.

    This is probably the toughest one to answer. Reusing a concept with a few adjustments in a new context seems reasonable to me, but I'd personally be a bit more hesitant to lift both a unique concept and its implementation and use them in a scenario covering the exact same topic. There's a huge gray area here. Related to that, the use of Lua in Civ2 scenarios is a relatively recent development and best practices haven't fully solidified within the community. As a general rule, I think copying Lua code is like copying graphical assets: credit the creator as much as possible, and pull from multiple sources whenever you can.

    "If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants." -- We're all learning from the designers that have come before us and benefiting from the scenarios they've released. In many ways, that type of building upon the work of each other is what the community is all about.

    EDIT: Tootall beat me to it :) but I think we're saying a lot of the same things.
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2019
  11. tootall_2012

    tootall_2012 Prince

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    Thank you Knighttime. You did a much better job of explaining the proper etiquette than I did! :goodjob:


    Konig15,

    If you are interested, you can find a list of resources than can help with the scenario design process in the following thread 'Scenario Creation Excel Sheet' on this post here.

    In addition, as I once shared with Knighttime, I typically follow some pre-established steps when designing a new scenario.

    Step One: Define my Goal and Vision.
    For me it is very important to clearly define, at a high level, from the very beginning what’s my goal. What I’m I trying to reproduce or achieve?

    In the case of my Napoléon scenario, for example, my goal was to reproduce the Napoleonic Wars in Europe between the major belligerents of the time from August 1805 to September 1815 (starting from the War of the Third Coalition all the way to the Empire’s final downfall).

    My vision was that I didn’t want it to be a typical Civ 2 conquest game, where the French human player would attack one enemy nation, conquer its cities and use those same cities to build additional forces to attack the next target, until all its adversaries were defeated. France would have to rely on its own manpower resources, alongside those of its minor power allies, to establish its dominance on the continent.

    Step Two: Create and follow a general project plan:

    1. Scenario Research = To Do
    2. Unit selections = To Do
    3. Wonders and City Improvements selections = To Do
    4. Technological advances selections = To Do
    5. Terrain, cities, improvements, wonders, units graphics selection = To Do
    6. Tech Tree creation = To Do
    7. Rules.txt file creation = To Do
    8. Selecting and adding sounds to scenario = To Do
    9. Map creation = To Do
    10. Convert the map file (.mp) into a scenario file (.scn) = To Do
    11. Set the scenario parameters = To Do
    12. Cities placement, for each power, on map (city sizes, city improvements, etc) = To Do
    13. Road, mines, irrigation, labels, etc, placement on map = To Do
    14. Event file creation = To Do
    15. Units placement on map = To Do
    16. Setting up cities production build queues and possible trade routes = To Do
    17. Testing = To Do
    18. ReadMe creation = To Do

    Steps 1 to 18 are not set in stone, and are interchangeable, and therefore are used as a guideline and a reminder of all the tasks that need to be completed.

    I hope this helps.
     
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  12. Prof. Garfield

    Prof. Garfield Deity Supporter

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    In Napoleon I, you are rewarded for playing smart, husbanding resources, and winning attrition with your enemies. The reward is victory, which is absolutely achievable. If you don't do these things, you risk losing, either explicitly or implicitly. Massive economic development is not in the scope of the scenario. Why would it be? There isn't much time for that sort of thing. Your main resources are your troops and artillery, with some production to let you build ships or replace certain things. If it takes a couple tries to win, then so be it. Napoleon didn't win on his first try either.

    If you don't like that sort of thing, it's fine, but I still don't understand why you would choose Napoleon as the basis for an economic development scenario. Was it simply the best of the three Lua scenarios available?

    P.S. Anyone can use any code I've written for Civ II for any purpose. Plagiarize away. Giving credit would be polite, but I wouldn't want anyone to waste time re-creating (or worse, doing something new but inferior) my work because they weren't sure if they were 'allowed' to use my work.
     
  13. Konig15

    Konig15 Warlord

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    Excellent!

    As for why Napoleon I for economic development? Precisely because of the guns and butter dichotomy. If there are no guns, you just focus on butter and that can be rewarding, but not until you've won the peace, like I did in Fading Lights years and years ago. Asls even in a war game like the Mongols scenario, the guns versus butter dichotomy is so important because you have until the end of the scenario to build a legacy of the Mongols as something other than Khorne followers who want to bring blood to the blood god and skulls to the skull throne, whether or, not they call Korne Tengri. If there's no butter; what the hell are you fighting for? Regime survival? I mean in and of himself, who gives a **** about Napoleon's power and prerogatives? You know Talleyrand is gonna save France and the Coalition can't Yalta France because the balance of power issues AND they are fighting to restore the Bourbons. Fighting as World War II as either the Soviets or the Germans is a fight for the survival of the nation: the Russians face extermination, the Germans ethnic cleansing and enslavement under the Iron Curtain.

    Napoleon himself is more or less **** in silk stockings, to quote his opinion of Talleyrand, and is fighting for his own ego and gratification. The only thing redeeming about Nappy is he's capable. And besides, evenin the Napoleonic Wars people were pissed at him because he wanted peace on HIS terms and no one elses. He took money for canals and spent them on barges to invade England with. He invaded Spain because he could, and while I don't know the details, I know damn well agentler hand in Spain would have done a lot to quell the guerrilla activity as would have, you know, keeping Ferdinand on a puppet king. Me personally I would have just murdered Godoy in a gangland hit as a warning to other majos that no one was getting out of this alive. Hitler was more justified in invading Yugoslavia than Nappy was in invading Spain. He deserved every agony of the Spanish Ulcer. I won't say he was a tyrant, but he was a high handed jerk who had an ego as big as Handsome Jack's. Normally I would have no desire to play as Napoleon himself, but the scenario came highly recommended on a mechanical level, especially the European powers track and the diplomatic modeling, which yes, my god YES it's worth playing. And if my Napoleon can destroy the Ottoman Empire and free the Christian peoples of the empire decades early, well better late than never. And if there's some event chain to abolish serfdom in Russia as Nappy's army goes into Moscow, that'd be worth it too. Something important. Because Napoleonic France was a reactionary obstacle to the unification of Germany and Italy, and the utter breaking of the landed aristocracy in favor of yeoman and free peasants. I wouldn't say Nappy was any more villainous than Alexander I or Charles IV or Ferdinand VII or Lious XVIII, but they were all huge As....stinkers, and Napoleon debased himself and the tricolor by trying to be them instead of George Washington.

    In a Napoleonic Scenario, I'd much rather play as Spain, Prussia or Britain. And if available, the Swedes and Portuguese.
     
  14. Prof. Garfield

    Prof. Garfield Deity Supporter

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    I'm pretty sure that most people play scenarios because the actual scenario itself is interesting to them. Maybe they like a period in history, so they naturally gravitate to doing things in that time period, or they want to learn a little bit about a time period, so they want a semi guided tour. Maybe they like building an empire into a golden age, so they pick scenarios where they can do that, and wars are less prominent (or, they just play the base game). Maybe they particularly like strategic and tactical thinking, so they pick various war scenarios to play. I don't think many people pick up scenarios based on the prospect of making a fictional world a better place. Fewer still seek to modify a scenario to satisfy such a desire. Perhaps the reason is that the base game looks an awful lot like a totalitarian psycho state where the citizens are forced to work towards goals that will pay off thousands of years after they die, for the glory of some omniscient god-king, so those kinds of people play something else long before they get to scenarios.

    Civilization, and Civilization scenarios are games. Hence, there are always tradeoffs between (semi) realism, game mechanics, fun, and other considerations. If you have a war game, then the details of the economy are often secondary. In Over the Reich, what do the industry tiles mean? Are they ALL industry, all military industry, or just aircraft industry? In some sense, the answer is "who cares?" The point of the game is to bomb stuff, and to stop stuff from being bombed. When stuff gets bombed, something bad happens.

    It is certainly reasonable to want a war scenario to have a relatively accurate economy, but it is just as reasonable to view the economy as simply a means for reinforcement. In that case, it is a game design tradeoff of how much a 'factory' (is that a new factory, or a converted factory? Who cares?) costs, in that you are delaying reinforcements now for more reinforcements later. Then choose the cost on what will either be most interesting or make the game flow as you like.

    The problem is that if your definition of 'winning' involves explicitly improving the common man's living standard, the economy becomes a lot more important to get 'right.' If you don't think so, then just add a victory text box along the lines of "Napoleon I, now secure as Emperor of France and Master of Europe, turns his attentions and administrative talents to the improvement of his subjects living standards."

    There's not a lot of scope for butter/investment/growth for a leading nation in 10 years, as in Napoleon I. Per capita long run growth of the leading nations has been around 2% per year since the industrial revolution (countries 'catching up' to the leaders can, of course, do much better). Compounded over 10 years, that's about 22%. Praiseworthy, certainly, but hardly something to build a month by month scenario around. I suppose you could technically do better on the basis of recovering a war torn nation back to pre-war standards, or you might believe that benevolent totalitarian leadership can exceed this growth rate.

    In any case, if you want your economy to be something other than the delusion of an emperor in a castle, you'll have to nail down a few things in your model. Does the city screen show all the resources in your economy, or just those resources available for government direction. That's going to have an impact on what is 'good' and also what is possible. There is much greater scope for fast 'growth' if that means increasing the government's share of the economy, but that's not really 'good' for the people unless it results in a similar increase in government services. I think that a few years ago I suggested a WWII scenario concept where 'food' was 'civilian production' and shields were 'government production', so by mining an 'industry' tile, irrigation would be replaced with mining, and food production would be changed to shield production.

    The thing is that in a longer run timeframe, the distinction becomes less important. Is a 'factory' in the base Civilization game a government factory, or a private factory from which the government receives increased taxes? Maybe both are just as plausible. By 'building' the factory instead of troops or something, you are leaving resources in the economy to be invested. Is this all the resources, or just some of them? Does it really matter?

    Good luck with your project. But if you really don't care about Napoleon's power and prerogatives, modifying this scenario doesn't seem like an efficient way to get a scenario that you would want. If you try out my Lua lessons and have questions, I'll be happy to answer them. Those lessons are supposed to be for people without prior programming experience, so I really want to know if I've omitted important details, or just made things too hard. Also, questions are natural when learning something, and a Q&A thread would potentially help others.
     
    Buck2005 likes this.
  15. Konig15

    Konig15 Warlord

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2007
    Messages:
    152
    That is AMAZING! Actually I love having these kinds of discussions about how to make the crunch fit the fluff and vice vera.

    The way I'd put it: Napoleon can't improve the overall economic growth that much, in and of itself. Trade arrows represent more or less the economic power of a region. Thus the 'We Love the Emperor Days are important not just in maximizing economic performance, but the very legitimacy of the regime itself. That you are ruling through good policy rather than fear.

    One thing I'd like to do, if I have budget and ability is building a Civ game around The Dictator' Handbook and Rules for Rulers. Your state ALWAYS makes a lot of money, but you have to keep paying off your keys to power, the generals, the nobles, ect. Great deeds aren't done in an of themselves, but to give enough legitimacy you can Wrangel in the elites and actually do something other than feed their endless hunger for patronage.

    Something NOT in the Spirit of Napoleon I am doing is I have a LOT of the minor powers units under my control act as settlers, no terraforming ability and they are slow but they do represent a labor pool that you can recruit to make the local economies better, by organizing town charters, rationalizing agriculture, building roads, and draining swamps (something I'll only do in the winter because of the winter attrition rule). I'm also doing things organizing a far more professional military, in the form of a 300 shield ability to build Imperial Guards. Not only is each Gaurd unit worth six Light Regiments in costs and there's no ability to rush buy anyway owning to the exponential costs and gap between unit tiers. Even using The.....heavy cav unit in front line garrisoning represents that because the heavy Cav works ALMOST as well as light infantry, in cities at least, but at twice and one half as expensive. Is it gamey to not throw Light Regiminents into the firing line until Elan expires? I don't think so, I think it's about husbanding resources including military-age males.

    As a legitimate criticism of the scenario is that right now, as of the Third Coalition, it is more than possible to achieve Austerlitz in September and Pressburg in October, the reason I don't want to in-game is conquering Croatia, looting as many of the improvements of the Austrian Cores as possible and establishing strong core in Austrian Poland in Prepping for when the Prussians get out of line. So me giving the Hussars all they're diplomatic functions back and setting more of the units to bribable AND setting the tech and building possibilities of Hussars to universal, seems like an interesting thing to do, although I've yet to see the Coalition play with them. I think it's interesting to instead of annihilating the Austrian Army at Ulm (which I more or less cannot help but do in August cause of map size and stuff. I get my units there, and use the Hussars to cut off the road behind them, and then pull up a dump truck of money and bribe the entire army to surrender. At first, I was thinking this was ahistorical, cause I disbanded most of the Austrian infantry in Strasbourg to make a single Imperial Gaurd unit but used the Austrian Cannons without mercy to secure Munich and Innsbruck. I couldn't go too far because the Grand Armee can only move at the speed of the artillery train. Even before I started modding the game, I'd have Most or all of Bavaria under my control by August, Innsbruck with the help of the Italian Army. Then we camp out in Munich wating for the either A. The Austrian Army to Leroy Jenkins into the Black Forrest OR the baggage train catches up and I make the And I shoot them in the face with canister until they die. So I changed things so I had two Hussars units, one in Strassburg, and the other in Milan and I bribed Venice too. Mind you, this wasn't cheap, I needed both places to have courthouses and the game starts you with 1750 gold and all this subterfuge cost me 1200 of that gold, Gold, I can't easily replace. And except for the cav and artillery, I'm not using all those units.

    But here's the thing, I looked at the casualty lists from the Battle of Ulm and Calderio and the number of prisoners captured and artillery guns seized by the French, bribing the units isn't all that ahistorical in terms of historical loot payout. The ahistorical thing is paying top dollar to recruit Austrian and Hungarian heavy cav and send it against Naples. I mean Heck, there was a movement in World War II to make a Free German Army to fight in the Pacific, and soldier loyalty and fanaticism was a much bigger deal than in the early 19th century

    The ahistorical thing I have done though is I'm not interested in fighting Trafalgar. I'm not interested in invading Britain, not yet. I am taking the Med Route, striking in lightning raids tp secure Sicilit and Sardinia and Malta. And in the Med, Villeneuve sailed to the Indies to draw off British Defenses, But it was so a smaller French force (a squad of frigates, two-deckers, and three-deckers plus the ONLY French transport squadron amd the only bombard left in the french fleet) could secure the central Med. And this seems not in Napoleon's personality wheelhouse, but certainly within French possibility. I'm taking John Keegan's Meditteranean route, and that means turning the Ottomans into footstools ASAP. How do you kill Venice? The same way you kill Byzantium, the capital too well defended, you dismember the empire, instead of going directly for the throat.

    And as much as I don't care for Nappy, doing unconventional and non-historical actions THRILL me. Playing Europe in Flames and developing Tiger tanks in July of 1940, and calling off the Blitz before it happened and sending those bombers south to take out Malta felt REAL good. And using paratroopers to seize East Stalingrad and Sevestapol before they can become fortresses is ahistorical but in line with how you conduct Urban warfare operations (you HAVE to cut off the city before assaulting it, something the US Army did to near perfection at Aachen in 1944). I just wish there was a way to create a Black Sea fleet out of Romania and Bulgaria's forces or better yet invade/intimidate Turkey so the Italian Nave could get int there and conduct raids and amphibious assaults on Sochi and other ports on the eastern Black Sea.

    I also am experimenting with goody huts, which probably don't belong in a Napoleon scenario, and yet....the idea of going into villages and finding crackpot geniuses and sending them to Paris to confer and make Steampunk is kinda awesome. Or letting th poor villages of Eastern Europe for their valuables is also in keeping with at least some parts of the era.
     
  16. Konig15

    Konig15 Warlord

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2007
    Messages:
    152
    Prof. I need help.

    Finally found a much simpler event to do what I want in Korea Redux. That event is the following:


    @IF
    UNITKILLED
    unit=UN Transport Ship
    attacker=Anybody
    defender=United Nations
    @THEN
    Delay
    delay=2
    CREATEUNIT
    unit=UN Transport Ship
    owner=United Nations
    veteran=no
    homecity=none
    locations
    118,106 ;Fukuoka
    endlocations
    CHANGEMONEY
    receiver=United Nations
    amount=-200
    @ENDIF

    And I want it to be this:
    @IF
    UNITKILLED
    unit=O. Nezam-I Cedid
    attacker=Anybody
    defender=France
    @THEN
    Delay
    delay=2
    CREATEUNIT
    unit=Italian Infantry
    owner=France
    veteran=yes
    homecity=none
    locations
    74,64,0
    endlocations
    @ENDIF

    The Ottoman unit being the unit the goody huts keep giving me. And I'm using the minor powers units as settlers/construction battalions. As you can imagine, this event chain isn't working, and in fact the whole Lua is broken until I remove it.. If it helps because I have zero idea where to even put a new event, these are the next few lines:

    -- ==============================================================================
    end) -- end of civ.scen.onUnitKilled()

    -- Initialize the random number generator each time this file is parsed:
    local randomizer = (os.time() % 100)
    randomizer = ((randomizer * randomizer * 111) + 111) % 10000
    math.randomseed(randomizer)
    for i = 1, randomizer do math.random() end
    print("")
    print("Initialized the random number generator using " .. randomizer)

    OK. I gotta be honest, I'm here and not trying to mod Europa Universalis IV because I loathe coding and programming, I have zero desire to learn and want something that requires exactly zero technical ability, where the events can be very robust but are brain dead to understand and are almost entirely plug and play. If I had the talent I'd much rather create sounds and graphics, but I can't even do that. I know English, I hate grammar, I never want to learn another language in my life, I thought German would be easy because only Dutch and Frisian are closer but it was some of the frustrating and tedious **** I've ever had the displeasure of studying. I don't mind assembling things, I don't mind conceptualizing things, I don't mind doing assembly work, but I'd rather work in retail, which I still have PTSD from, than code or script. I'd rather have food poisoning than script or code. Like I may just have to give up Lua if I'm excepted to learn it and just go back to pre-lua events.

    Right now I'm real sick, and will probably have to avoid family Christmas like I had to avoid my Christmas eve service. Thing is, I wanna be lead writer/director/creative lead/beta tester and if I had artist talent, graphic designer. But I want NOTHING to do with code. I realize scripting is simpler than coding but for me, it's all the same tedious, confusing, utterly precise binary, either it works or it doesn't crap that make playing with numbers as fun and disarming mines. There's no close enough.

    I look at the Lau scripting and it's like trying to read conversational German all over again. I haven't noped that hard since I walked out of the dentist's office where he didn't novacane me enough before a root canal. Throwing up from food poisoning sounds more fun, even when it's real bad and it comes out of my nose too. I'm having flashbacks of the most soul-killing misery I've ever felt in a classroom like I remember trying to make heads or tails of conversational German and I want to crawl into bed and curl into the fetal position and maybe suck my thumb like Prince John in Disney's Roin Hood. Even I don't understand why it fills me with such emotional pain but it does.

    And I don't want to throw this in your face because you've been NOTHING but nice to me, and everyone else I've seen here. It's wonderful. The thing is, in Fallout modding, they say you can either be a modder who occasionally plays or a player who occasionally mods, and I'm the latter. I only want to mod because I there are things I want from the old mods I'm not getting, or I see new things that could make them even betterer.

    Look if there are things I could trade or favors I could do to get someone else to do the Lua scripting for me, fine. The only Lua thing I am willing to learn (as opposed to cutting and pasting other people's Lua events) is the map resizing thing we talked about in the mp thread. But not until I'm good and rested and given how difficult adjusting to the BiPAP has been since Labor Day, I don't know when that will be.

    I'm going to try and sleep again, and hopefully, it will be more than two hours.

    I want to wish you and everyone else here a very Merry Christmas. Even if I have no desire to learn Lua or any other script or code, I'm inspired by the fact you guys have put such love in such a game, for so many years. If
     
  17. Prof. Garfield

    Prof. Garfield Deity Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2004
    Messages:
    2,648
    Location:
    Ontario
    The event you found is written in what we call the Civ II 'macro language.' It is not directly compatible with Lua.

    If you use Multiplayer Gold Edition, there is an event creation tool built into the game, which will guide you through the event creation process. However, some events don't exist in MGE, and you won't have access to the TOTPP features either.

    You can use Test of Time with the regular macro events. There is no event creator tool in TOT, and there have been some reports that TOTPP causes bugs with the 'continuous' option under certain circumstances, but the events are simpler to use than Lua. However, debugging a complicated set of events can also be difficult (I suspect that simple events are easier with the 'macro' system, but complicated events are easier with Lua). The upcoming Burma scenario was shelved for a while because the Macro events weren't working.

    I did write a tool, The Legacy Event Engine to allow the macro language to be used with Lua. However, some knowledge of Lua will be necessary to use the engine, and even more to integrate it with an already existing events file (since I expected it to be used on scenarios without an existing Lua code base). Also, the Engine hasn't actually been used on a full scale project yet (I used it on Sea Lion to test it, but somehow got distracted and never finished the scenario), so it is very likely to have undiscovered issues that will need to be fixed. I assure you that you don't want to try to deal with those (or even report them) without at least a modest understanding of Lua.

    Since you don't want to learn Lua, I have the following advice. Try building a modest scenario in either MGE or TOT, using the macro language, to get your feet wet and see what it takes to actually build something. Choose a topic and concept that can stand without Lua specific features. If you choose TOTPP as your version, maybe the scenario can be 'imported' into Lua later, for a couple special features. JPetroski is planning to convert a scenario of his to Lua in 2020, so we might have a more robust conversion engine in 6 months or a year.

    I'm not interested in taking on another 'lead developer' role at the moment (I've already declined the role for a Bismark scenario). However, some of the project ideas I have are meant to reduce the technical knowledge needed to make events. Thus far, these have mostly been in the form of code 'libraries,' but I might take on something more akin to the legacy macro language at some point.
     
    Konig15 likes this.
  18. Konig15

    Konig15 Warlord

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2007
    Messages:
    152
    Absolutely understandable. Also, I'm sick with the flu at the moment and after discussing my particular response to learning new languages...I got good advice that you don't want to try and tackle that when anything less than fully rested. So get adjusted to the BiPAP, get all the sleepy, then maybe then take a crack at it. So maybe in February? Here's hoping at least.
     
  19. tootall_2012

    tootall_2012 Prince

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2012
    Messages:
    561
    Hi Konig15,

    As I mentioned to you previously what path you decide to take is in the end up to you but for certain if you don't have at least a basic understanding of the different components that go into designing a scenario, including coding (be it macro or Lua), you won't be able to make any progress whatsoever in any project.

    As such, if you at least want to take a look, there are two items of interest in the Scenario Creation Excel Sheet link I provided above:
    The TOTPP v015.pdf file is the complete guide to all the features that are included in TNO's Test Of Time Patch Project
    The link to the Civilization II Test of Time manual, at the end of which there is a whole section on the macro language

    I wish you good luck.
     

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