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SMAN's Unit Laboratory

Discussion in 'Civ5 - Unit Graphics' started by sman1975, Apr 2, 2018.

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  1. sman1975

    sman1975 Chieftain

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    I saw your note about the tech tree- it's about what I expected. There are interconnecting issues running through that (prereqs for units and buildings mostly) that make changes time consuming, if possible at all. It's one of the reasons fairly early on with this mod I decided compatibility would necessarily suffer if I was going to achieve that "epic" feel to the mod.

    Yeah, I tend to agree with you on fixing errors. Takes me a long time to find these, due to a severe case of dyslexia. It's much easier for me to "visualize" a solution and start work on it than to look at existing code and try to understand what's going on. Takes forever. I often have to import text into MS Word, then change text colors on various statements in order to follow the logic. Not an expeditious process... It's one of the reasons it seemed reasonable to offer a more tangible method of thanks. Basically, if someone comes into my house to clean up a mess, they should get paid for it... :lol:

    A case in point, I've been spending most of the day looking for an error in text strings that means that 4 of the 13 custom civs in the WW1 scenario display their leaders' names when I execute the "GetCivilizationShortDescription()" method. It's odd, as I can look at the localization DB and see the correct data, but then the method fires, it returns the leader name instead of the civ's short name. The long name returns the leader name too... :wallbash:

    So, 10 hours later, I'm still no closer to a solution, and it's about the last thing keeping me from completing the mod. Will eventually drop a post in the forums to see if someone has a clue, but this is also time-consuming to wait.

    Anyways, just trying to give you an idea about why I felt it was fair to offer cash for assistance, since most of the time we're dealing with several systemic, inter-twining issues instead of a one-off kind of problem. Other modders can do whatever they feel, but in my own case it just seems like too much to ask for someone to review a few thousand lines of code to look for errors, real/potential or otherwise...
     
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  2. ofmiciv5

    ofmiciv5 Chieftain

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    SMAN's 'The World at War'

    Finally saw your mod on steam tonight. Eager to try flat out your mod only. :)
     
  3. sman1975

    sman1975 Chieftain

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    Yeah, I was trying to release as much as possible yesterday - seemed like a good day for it... :)
     
  4. ofmiciv5

    ofmiciv5 Chieftain

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    After playing the game in a few dozens of turns, I think you will have to play this as it was designed and intended to. Pretty much another alternative core for Civ5. You simply have to choose one between those core mods. Like choosing what to eat, nothing could go wrong.

    Spoiler :


    I mean no harm giving my opinion. Pretty much balance is the issue here. Will state the pros and cons. PEACE! :smoke:

    Spoiler :

    PROS
    1.) Call to arms! Warmongers out there! Feel the WW 1 and 2 at its finest.
    2.) Good for those who always play in vanilla or had experience with FW........
    3.) Awesome addition of techs and units. Makes you want to role play as Hitler.
    4.) Would recommend to play this mod with the fullest intention of the creator. DO NOT compare or approach the game like how you'll play the other two alternative core mods.
    5.) Works best I think with World War scenarios, as the game is centered on war heavy units.

    CONS
    I guess ONLY one cons here.....
    Spoiler :

    Not recommended for those who have tried VP and/or JFDLC otherwise these cons are utter insignificant. OR choosing to have another alternative game play experience. As these will be the top criticism for those who tasted VP and/or JFDLC because these issues were fixed and balanced by those two;

    - Suffers the same massive balance problem with vanilla.
    - Mandatory bee-lining of techs with science buildings.
    - Policies are underwhelming and lacks variety. Piety is utter useless. Pretty much mandatory Industrialization-Rationalism.
    - While I'm a 99.999% warmonger player, vanilla OP civs are more OP than ever now.
    - AIs are highly exploitable. Feeding frenzy.
    - One sided approach, WAR WAR WAR! Pretty much promoting total war, as intended.




     
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2018
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  5. sman1975

    sman1975 Chieftain

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    You're comments are actually quite helpful. Shows that most of the intent of the mod is fairly established. It was never meant to play well with the other "big" mods, and getting it there may be, to borrow a phrase, a bridge too far.

    Also, the "conflict" (i.e. "World at War") aspect of the mod demonstrates the point I was trying to bring out. In any world's history that resembles our own (the sine qua non of any Civ game), civs would see a colonial period when certain civs establish a technical superiority over other civs. And over time, those colonial competition, along with the atrophy of those colonial structures would migrate into a seething resentment that would propel large sections of the world to trip into existential warfare.

    This mod seeks to clearly demonstrate the "guns or butter" debate. True, there is a military streamline in the tech tree you simply must follow if you want to survive. And you can ignore it, as well - but at your own parallel. The Czechs in the 1920's knew this - that's why they put sooooo much emphasis in developing effective tank designs. Remember the best tanks rolling eastward into Poland in 1939 were Czech designed, and most of them Czech built...

    Or you could follow the USA approach of dealing with a massive social welfare experiment, ignoring your military all the time. The Japanese were most appreciative. Well, at least for 6 months or so....

    So, for the most part, your comments are pointing to me being fairly happy with the status of the mod at this point of release (rough BETA, 12 hours after publishing... :lol: ).

    I was most concerned about "balance" (mostly in the tech, building, and unit "costs." My goal was to originally make tech expensive (slower), buildings about "normal" and units cheaper. Running into the hard "Beaker limit" in the tech tree kind of killed that, so I had to make adjustments that kind of hurt the slower tech approach.

    One thing you have to realize that's not toooo obvious, at least not yet - the entire WaW "Family" was supposed to rotate around the scenarios. They are supposed to be the stars of the shows. Of course, they make tons of changes, even to the WaW changes themselves, to help focus a game on about 50-100 turns. And I tell ya, from playing the WW1 scenario in testing, I think it's going to be a gas when it's finally ready to inflict on the public. Really captures the "epic" scope of the war. I'm sure the WW2 scenario could be even more epic, with a better variety of units/tech choices.

    So, if some of the features, design considerations, etc., seem a bit odd, part of that may be how it relates to how the scenarios are being cobbled together.

    Appreciate the feed back - it is most informative.

    Could I impose on you a favor? I opened a "collaboration space" specifically for WaW:

    https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/smans-the-world-at-war.638328/

    Could you repost Post #24 there? I think it's a great set of comments that I hope will set the tone for the discussions there later on. I'll repost most of this post there after yours as well - to get the conversation started.

    Thanks!!!!!!
     
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  6. YINGCHENG

    YINGCHENG Chieftain

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    Hi Sman, First, thanks for making Workd At War Units mod, it looks great. Yesterday I tried this mod with JFDLC (the modpack includes enlightenment era) and Nutty’s Ethnic Diversity. The problem is that at the beginning of the game, some civs have tank and rifleman as their first Units, and some civs do not. It obviously showed incompatibility between your Units mod and my mod currently I am using. I am wondering if you are willing to make them compatible. I know that modding perhaps is your daily hobby, but i also would love to express my gratitude in a practical way if it mortivates you to make it work. I love many of your mods And I know this unit mod is designed for your great mod ‘World at War’ and thus the compatibility with other great mods is not guaranteed and may not be doable. I have no knowledge of modding, and that’s why I am consulting you for assistant. I can provide logs, and some data information for you to tackle problems, but that’s all I am capable of. Hopefully you may consider my request, and thanks for your patience. Again, thanks for creating all of these wonderful mods and willing to share with us in the community. Appreciate it.
     
  7. sman1975

    sman1975 Chieftain

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    @YINGCHENG - I'm currently working on an update for World at War, so it's no problem to take a quick look at these two mods and see if I can add a fix. I suspect the problem is that EE modifies the Tech Tree quite a bit, which "breaks" the assumptions WAW makes when it makes its own adjustments to the TT.

    Quick question: when you saw the Rifleman units - did you start the game in the Ancient Era? If so, can you remember which civs had Riflemen, and perhaps a few civs that did not? Knowing the specifics on this will greatly help debugging the problem.

    I was planning on making an EE compatible version of WAW, but that's later on in the spring. My next project is finishing the WW2 scenario (~75% complete), but finishing it properly necessitates me updating both the main WAW and Unique Units mods (both projects "almost" finishe.

    So - if the problem is a "quick fix" - I'll add it to WAW (V3) - which should be out this week. If the problem is a Tech Tree conflict, that's quite a different problem to fix, and will probably have to wait a month or two.

    Appreciate the info!


    Edit: when you say, "JFDLC" - what specific mod are you referring to? Please provide a specific link. From what I've seen in the past, this name means different things to different people. I want to make sure I'm testing the exact mod in question. Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019
  8. YINGCHENG

    YINGCHENG Chieftain

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    Thanks for your reply! Yeah I think the problem is on EE as well.
    Yes, I do remember clearly that I saw England had the rifleman units, and Rome had the tanks at the beginning. If it helps you to detect the problems, I am willing to run another game and provide specific report for you.
    In order to make you convenient to fix problems, I am going to attach the essential mods in the below, hopefully it might help you better.
    For JFDLC, you can easily find out its public version from this link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/cultural-diversity.521664/
    In that thread, you can find out JFDLC.exe from JFD's google drive, the link is here: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1aVHF952aZgP07QMUF1Bn_BkQJSa9NrSU. the mod "JFDLC" is packed, so you can easily get all of them I mentioned from there. Being specifically, it includes Community Patch only, JFD's Cultural Diversity, JFD's Rise to Power, Part of JFD's ExCE, and some mods like EE v6, Quick Turns etc. Let me know if you need me to provide any logs, or basically anything you think I can help. I appreciate for your assistance. I will definitely not push you for prioritizing my request, and am looking forward to seeing your new mods in the foreseen future! Much appreciated for anything that you have shared with us.
     
  9. Asterix Rage

    Asterix Rage Warlord

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    Despite all (...), I like many of your so many mods.
    If one day you plan to release a VP compatible something, I'll be pleased to help with promo icons.

    edit:
    and for free:)
     
  10. pineappledan

    pineappledan Warlord

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  11. sman1975

    sman1975 Chieftain

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    @pineappledan - I'm not sure how to add that kind of unit. If the unit already exists anywhere - like in another mod - it's pretty easy to bring it over to a separate new mod. I don't have the ability (or time!) to create new units from scratch.

    I suppose it would be possible to start with some kind of chariot unit and force a substitution of the horse models for one of the wolf models that are already around. Not too sure how it would look, though. All of the existing chariot models I remember only have 2 horses, so replacing them with 2 wolf models might look kind of silly.

    Do you know of any dog sled models already out there?
     
  12. pineappledan

    pineappledan Warlord

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    No dog sled models already out there yet, but I know at least 1 other modder besides myself that would be very interested in a dog sled unit model as well.

    I agree that the most sensible way to do this is to re-jig an existing chariot. I propose using Danrell's Mongol Chariot as a base, but making it a little skinnier and lopping off the wheels if possible. Then reskin the charioteer with Civitar's Unaaq, and reskinning the horse with Civitar's wolf.

    Having only 1 dog on the sled isn't fantastic, but it's way better than just using a chariot model, and 1-dog sled pulling isn't unheard of. It's not like a 6-12 dog team would fit sensibly on a hex anyways.
     
  13. sman1975

    sman1975 Chieftain

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    I've looked at the Mongol chariot model and don't believe anyone could get it to work via substituting new art files. Both the "driver" and the "horse/chariot" files are composites, meaning they contain 2 pictures in one file. The model will try to pull pieces of each of these picture to make the unit on the screen. Unless the files being used to replace the original artwork are laid out in the exact same manner (and size), the results will look quite bad.

    I just don't see a way to insert a singular wolf picture into the model that expects the horse file to also contain the chariot artwork.

    There are some intrepid souls on the forums that are attempting to create new models, some with some pretty good results. I'd recommend trying to contact one of them directly and see if they can help out.

    There's probably less that 20 people world-wide who really understand new model creation, so I'm not very sure this would work either.

    Sorry - but this is simply beyond my meager skills...
     
  14. pineappledan

    pineappledan Warlord

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  15. AzraelZephyrian

    AzraelZephyrian Chieftain

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    Would you have some recommendations of people who are still active both on the forum and in modeling? I've managed to import models to blender, edit them, and then crash everything horribly once I try to export to .gr2. I also need to ask someone for advice on generating UV unwraps that aren't horrifically jumbled messes.
     
  16. pineappledan

    pineappledan Warlord

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    I’m in much the same way. I can’t get nexusbuddy to work. I can’t do the final fbx to gr2 conversion.

    @AzraelZephyrian, there is a smart unwrap option in blender which, for our purposes with these zoomed out, low poly models, is good enough.
     
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  17. AzraelZephyrian

    AzraelZephyrian Chieftain

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    I got the process to work.

    1) make sure you have all vertices weighted to at least one bone. If need be, you can add a bone connected to point_world and just assign all bones a 0.001 weight for that bone, but it'll cause graphical errors. Nonetheless, it can be helpful for getting it into the game/granny viewer, so you can figure out which verts are unweighted.

    2) ensure you have a UV map

    3) make sure you have parented the armature (skeleton) to the mesh through both the object data panel *and the modifier panel*. From there, export to .br2. You can either open the .br2 directly (if you changed the skeleton at all) or overwrite the base file with the .br2. This latter option saves the skeleton of the stock model, but puts a custom mesh on top of it.
     
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  18. sman1975

    sman1975 Chieftain

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    Man, the two of you ought to open a tutorial thread, aka "Updated Model Making Process" - with 1 .. N steps on how to download tools, install, test, model building, etc.

    The community could really use it, as the current state has different pieces of the solution in different places, and all of the instructions in various degrees of entropy. It would be a great help to other aspiring modelers if this hodge-podge of semi-helpful posts could be brought up to date.

    I'd definitely send the Admins a request to make it a sticky. But looking around right now, it looks like you're well on the way of getting the resources library up to date with Deliverator - who is by far one of the great trailblazers for Civ V modding. Great job!
     
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  19. AzraelZephyrian

    AzraelZephyrian Chieftain

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    Great idea! I'll do that. It really was a pain in the rear to track down all the requisite info in its present diffuse form.

    Yup, Deliverator is pretty impressive.

    EDIT: wrote the tutorial (well, the most vital parts). It's available here:

    https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/a-guide-to-civ5-3d-modeling-modding.645876/
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2019

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