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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Dev Diary: Modding Again

Trust me, I'm as surprised as you are.

No, I haven't finished any of the web/text/interactive fiction pieces I'm working on - although they are still in the cooker and not the backburner. The nice thing about those projects is that I can work on them in short little bursts from nearly anywhere with a net connection. The IF piece will take a good long time, though, so nobody should expect another Randolph Carter anytime soon. Whereas with Carter 70% of the text was recycled from Lovecraft and then extended, this is not only all original but there should be about ten times more depth as well.

The other, using code cobbled from work stuff and a little from the remaining roguelike code, is shaping into a kind of web-based strategy game. That might be done sooner.

So how did I get back into modding? Well I made the mistake of playing some shooters online again. First F.E.A.R. and then UT2004. F.E.A.R.'s sameness, this feeling that I had played the same game over and over again, starting to get to me. I think it was terribly aggravated when a cheater was complaining that he wasn't allowed to use his speed hack because the "running was so slow" (I kid you not). Then i realized I was surrounded by punkbuster, bunny hoppers, speed hackers and probably the occasionally bot and I started doing the time warp again. So I loaded up UT2004 to see how the old girl was doing.

And once again it hit me - oh yeah, I can change this. So I loaded up WotGreal and dug up an old project. Took me a bit to fix and compile, but then there it was.

This time though my goal is to change as little as possible. I was always really ambitious with ideas - purchase menus, upgrade paths, etc. This time I just want to see how much gameplay can be effected with the smallest changes. If I release anything it probably won't have new maps, mutators or weapons - just gametypes.

Naturally, nobody will probably play it ... especially online.

So I'll try to make sure the bots play really well.


Winkyboy said...

That's cool... I've never stopped wanting to mod, but I have yet to find the chance to dedicate some time, again. Stupid contract jobs...

Plus, here's to hoping that UT3 is even EASIER to code for... It should be.

Josh said...

Yeah I might put a follow up post complaining what a state the whole TC mod menu setup turned out to be. I practically begged Epic to build a different or seperate framework that would be more partial conversion friendly - but no go.

They really wanted the next Counter-Strike though.

So in short, I won't be using any of that. Old fasioned umod which adds stuff to the normal menus probably.

Corvus said...

Gives me a good reason to reinstall UT2k4 on my machine.


Please consider me available for testing.

Josh said...

Thanks! I'll probably take you up on that considering a decent portion of my old mod crowd got lost to something called World of Warcraft...