Dreaming of integrated modability


#1

First of all:
Hi! First time posting here, but I’ve been obsessing about this game since the Kickstarter launch and done my best to keep up with the forum. :slight_smile:

If you don’t mind I’m gonna allow myself to dream out loud for a bit. This is not a question about what features will be available at releas. This is just my thoughts on how a really slick, future version of this game could work.

Imagine that you’re playing the game and you want your soldiers to have a new kind of sword.
You go to the blacksmith or his workstation and bring up the design view. This is like a very basic, in-game version of Qublicle. You can load any item that the blacksmith can make and modify it or you can start from scratch. A feature that separates it from Qubicle is that you’re not just dealing with colors, but with materials as well. There are for example a few different shades of steel. If you want a pink sword then you can change the color afterwards, but you build the shape using voxels of different materials. Thin layers of material, like cloth and leather could be painted on.
Depending on the amount of material used the game will deside a number of things. How much resources are needed to make the sword, the production time, the durability, the weight, the attack damage and the basic attack speed. You can change these values, but they will affect each other to keep balance. Higher damage and durability require longer production time. Lower weight gives less damage and durability but higher attack speed and lower resource requirements.
You can break the balance, but that will require a more skilled blacksmith or even magic. Magic and technical effects could also be added, but then a mage or an enginer will have to help out.

When you have designed your new sword you go to the barracks. Here you make sure that the soldiers hold it right and that non of their attacks causes your oddly shaped sword to cut of something that they might need.
You can choreograph new attacks here, as well as other moves. A multiplier will affect the swords attack damage, depending on the lenght of the animation, how many times it deals damage and the area of attack. You can change this multiplyer manually, but that will affect how dificult the attack is to learn.
A soldier can attempt to do any attack but if he isn’t good at it he will need longer preparations, is less likely to hit and causes less damage.
A soldier is most likely to use attacks that he is good at, but if he gets to predictable then skilled enemies will learn to block and dodge them. He will then gets more likely to use attacks that he is less good at.
By telling your soldiers to focus their training on a certain set of attacks your army will get its own fighting style and the soldiers will have individual styles depending on their favorite moves.
If they have a large set of attacks to practise from the start it will take longer for them to get good, but if they have to few attacks they will get predictable.

Other things can be moded in similar ways.
Armor give better protection the more voxels it consistes of, but reduce movement speed.
Talk to the librarian about this monster that you heard of that “looks like this”.
Talk to the alchemist about turning wood into stone.

Of course, these are just dreams and are not likely to happen… but it would be quite nice, right? :slight_smile:

Keep up the fantastic and extremely inspiering work!
Over and out. :slight_smile:


#2

Now i have no experience/knowledge of programming things, but this seems pretty difficult to do and would require more funding. Now this game will be made with full modability in mind, so someone could either create a mod for this or you could also learn to implement new weapons in the game. i don’t think weapon skins will be difficult to add, the technical aspects would require some basic knowledge of this.


#3

Here’s there response to my question on mods

"Yay mods! You can try making a sword yourself in Qubicle Constructor (the free voxel editing program we use) to see how hard it is. Importing the sword into the game should be fairly easy (setting a few values for its stats) but changing how swords work within the game (or changing other gameplay mechanics) would take some LUA scripting. How hard this is I guess just depends on how comfortable you are with scripting. Personally, I find Lua fairly accessible, as far as languages go. "

I’m not sure it’s going to be as easy as you are describing it, but making mods will be pretty simple.


#4

No, I agree that what @Agon suggest seems a bit extravagant to hope for, one still should be allowed to dream. =)
And personally I think this is something that actually would be amazing if it was made a reality, although I sadly think it’s not going to be in the game.

Maybe as a mod?


#5

Well I think designing weapons WILL be included in the game (And even if it wasn’t, qubicle nad submitting such things would be ridiculously easy, so much so that I don’t think you could even consider it a different program).

Scripting is completely different. Choreographing new moves is really hard and I don’t think any game has ever had that as an integrated feature.


#6

It would be easier to make a collection of Qubicle models of Blades, Hilts, Pommels, Hafts, Shafts, etc… that can be assembled by a blacksmith in game. Selecting the parts from the available collection at the Blacksmith workstation.
And that can be scripted in a mod if not already in the game.


#7

I don’t see why this couldn’t be the case. It would be fairly simple, for sure.


#8

I am not so certain about the choreography lessons at the barracks, but I really, REALLY, dig the idea of being able to customize your own weapon looks on the fly, especially if the terms are dictated in some fashion such as available resources (no shining blue swords unless you have some sapphires!) or crafter skills.


#9

I think the weapon designing would be pretty achievable, but the animation creating and learning your soldiers would be pretty hard to do.

The weapon designing could be enough and work really well, if the game looks at how the blade is shaped it could even allow for more realistic damage, but this wouldn’t even be fully necessary. (so maces of the same weight as a sword don’t deal the same damage with the same kind of attack).


#10

It may seem simple yes, but it would require a lot of things in the code. HOWEVER, being that the game is moddable in Lua there is a chance a modder will make this possible on there own when the game is released. I might do it if it is possible, but it is a not a one day project of hammering code, it would be a work of trial and error over many releases of the mod.


#11

I personally think that if you’re gonna make a game that’s supposedly so moddable you need to make it well integrated like that. But well see… I know it’d be hard so I won’t fault the devs if they can’t manage it… but still…


#12

I should have answered to this earlier. Just been busy. Sorry.

I know this may seem difficult to make, but I honestly think that it is more of a question of having time and of course to deciding if you want the game to work like this. The parts needed to make this work are (as far as I can think of) quite basic, but of course it’s not something that you put together over a weekend.

To add some support for my words I should say that I work as a programmer and studied medie technology at the university, with focus on programming 3d graphics, so there is a bit more thought behind this than “Just make a button that makes everything awesome!” :smiley:

The basic features of the voxel editor:
Show boxes. Check which box you clicked. Check which side of the box you clicked. Add a new box. Change a value (color/material) of the box you clicked. Take the positions and values and write to a file format.
These are all standard problems and similar problems have already been solved in the game.

If I didn’t misunderstand them in the modelling and animation stream they already have their own voxel2polygon converter, so we don’t have to worry about that.

The basic features of the animation editor:
Select a part. Link parts as parent and child. Show something representing that part’s pivot point. Move the pivot point. Move/rotate the part and its children around its pivot point. Save keyframes on a timeline. Interpolate between keyframes. Edit a graph to finetune the interpolation. Write to file.
Also standard problems.

Let me know if you think I missed some difficult part.

I don’t know if there is any other game that does this. I think Second Life has some kind of 3d editor? Either way, that’s not a reason to not do it. And I think Stonehearth with its simple art style and mod support would be perfect for it.

Still, it would take some time to make and it should not be a priority for the developers. I don’t know LUA so I don’t know if you could mod it in. A suggestion would be to outsource it to a student. It would be a standalone part of the code so it wouldn’t endanger the game and it would probably make for a really cool thesis work.