Mod ideas and how to get started?

Hey everyone! Been a while since I poked my nose in here. I did a little dabbling with modding a while back but due to some personal issues and my mod idea being something others were already working on (and a lot further in), I pretty much completely stopped that. But I’m BACK! With more ideas!

The best ideas…
Ideas of which I feel that they may be way to ambitious for me.

I was hoping you guys could give me some advice on how to tackle my ideas, and maybe suggest an order of complex to less complex so I don’t accidentally try to go for the most difficult idea I’ve got, and then dropping all of them due to the wall I accidentally ended up banging my head against.

Here a little overview of how I see my own level of skill in regards to the various aspects of StoneHearth modding:

  • Modelling I have no real problems with, the voxel style is fun to play with. Layering takes a little time.
  • Animation I know nothing about and feels very intimidating.
  • Programming on its own isn’t much of a problem. I am a programmer and am well versed in object oriented programming, however I am not familiar with LUA and have a trouble reading StoneHearth’s code as well as following the ‘trail’ (is there a way to debug the code while running?).
  • JSON is no problem. Any issues I run into with this is learning StoneHearth’s expected structures, for which there are plenty of examples in existing code.
  • HTML and CSS are no problems for me as I’ve done some web design related projects as part of work. Have yet to really look into the StoneHearth’s UI workings though, so I do still expect a bit of a learning curve.

Overview of my mod ideas (sorry for the wall of text! I tried to keep it brief):

  • Orchards for farmers. Normal farmland can be used for fruit trees like apple, cherry, etc. Also comes with new recipes for pies, candied apples, and fruit preserves. The trees would take up more space on the farmland rather than the veggie layout of 1 row of veggies and 1 row of nothing. I’m thinking that the trees take up a 3x3 spot. They’d take a full season to grow, and then provide multiple harvests before winter. Harvesting happens by shaking the tree. Ideally I’d like to add in wild fruit trees that grow on the world itself.

  • Farming overhaul. An idea to make farming a little more realistic and require more planning. Farming would give fewer harvests for most crops but with larger yields (ripping the carrots out of the ground), and smaller but multiple harvests for other crops (your corn plant has multiple cobs that ripen at different speeds and thus get harvested over longer time periods). There is no farming during the winter, and you’ll need to preserve food ahead of time through various methods. It would also give the player information as to when crops are ready for harvest and food is expected to rot. If possible, ground fertility could play a role in crop growth. More food foraging options in the wild would allow players to survive until their first harvests.

  • Moody Hearthlings / Hearthling needs. I personally feel like the Hearthlings lack a little personality. They’re happy little working drones as long as they have a good meal, a nice dining hall, and a comfy bed to call their own. This would change up the overview a bit to make their current status more visible, with bars for their hunger, sleep, and health, as well as add in a stress meter. Where their current mood would be an in the moment thing, stress would be a longer term factor that builds up as the Hearthling is all work and no play. Each would give their own set of buffs or debuffs related to walking speeds, work speeds, and in/decreases to stress and happiness. Includes amusement options for the Hearthlings to prioritize over being idle. Also, favorite foods / disliked foods?

  • Physical traders! Rather than a UI pop-up, the trader(s) will physically appear on the map and want to make their way to you. If they can’t, the game will tell you the traders couldn’t find a path to your city and leave without showing their wares. They want to sell stuff after all, not parkour through the forest. Traders will not show up if you’re under siege. Also includes a trader job which can use backpacks, wheelbarrows, or carriages to carry goods over to others for gold and return with rare goods. Would be nice if I could also include armed groups and escort your own trader to reduce the risk of bandit attacks. If you have a river (rivers mod) in your territory that leads all the way out of your section of land, also enable trade by rivers with boats.

  • Ocean biome where one side of your map is all (deep) waters with different creatures and plant life.

  • Researcher / Professor job. They’ll follow around one of your Hearthlings doing their jobs and makes notes, then compiles those into books that other Hearthlings can read to up their skills in that section.(Libraries!) Basically, the Professor makes skill books (aka, Carpentry level 2, Trapper level 3. A hearthling would need to read in the proper order of course). For an extra challenge, an extra literacy skill might be needed. To make a Professor, you’d need a Hearthling that can already read. He can then teach others how to read. Depending on their reading level, they’ll be able to read higher levels of books. Also, picture books for amusement? Wandering Professors that sell books?

  • Allow Hearthlings to perform all jobs. They would have no primary job, just a skill level that advances as they work. They’d still need the tools, but they can be placed near the workbenches and returned after they’re done working and go to the next task. I love Rimworld and I feel like their ‘job’ system is more flexible in that they’re all just tasks and you can tell the most advanced person to work on it when needed, and otherwise they’ll perform other tasks. A carpenter can this way still assist in building a house when he’s done making all the frames, and a trapper can assist mining a tunnel when his traps are all pending, etc. etc. Perhaps also include priority levels, and including / excluding specific jobs for specific Hearthlings?

Any feedback and advice you have is greatly appreciated!

new zone, modified version of farming with some space changes…should be doable if you can figure out lua. basically “farms but looks different, more space out” the rest is all models and json. difficulty: mid-high (because of the lua)

i did a “cheap and easy” version of this with my MRF mod(tripple grow times so you need more plots at once), but the diversified harvest for for instance corn should be relatively easy to do (json).
no farming during winter: easy to do
preservation: doable i think? would also just be json, recipes etc.
more foraging options: also json. so all in all : EASY, but takes some time

hard. lots of lua, ui work etc. beware, here be dragons. also AI work, which is worse. stay far away, unless massochist

cool, realtively hard (lua, ai, quest, a bit of everything) brunusupremo or dani tier level. i couldnt do it myself, but others might.

ask @BrunoSupremo

sort of exists in a mod already, tricky, lots of stuff, but doable. also, already sort of exists but not entireally.

merging all crafters? easy. is it SMART to do it? no. UI nightmare.

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Thank you so much for your feedback @Wouter_Sikkema!

Okay so you do definitely recommend a new zone for orchards rather than re-using the existing farmplot? Looks like a project to pick up after the farming one.

Models and recipes I’ve tinkered with before in my little tryout mod, so those are doable but indeed time consuming. I’ll see if I can figure out the multi harvests. Looks like this will be the one to start with difficulty wise.

RIP. I’ll wait with this one when I have a better handle on how StoneHearth flows code-wise and understand LUA and UI better. Much better.

Heh. Modding goals: Brunosupremo level. Definitely something to pick up later down the line then.

Not surprised to be referred to him on this! Something something worldbuilder. :slight_smile:

Can you tell me the name? I’ve searched the forums some and only found a few references to something along the lines of master apprenticeships but no actual mods I think.

So, only try to tackle if I want to overhaul the UI completely.

Btw, I wonder now if there’s a mod UI screen like you see in games like Skyrim and Rimworld? Where you can set little things for a mod or turn specific aspects on or off depending on your preferred playstyle. I haven’t seen any mention of it myself.

Not only that, it would probably be pretty bad for performance to have everyone capable of performing (and constantly thinking about and weighing/prioritizing) all tasks. That’s one reason golems are so much more performant than hearthlings: they have very few tasks they think about (and I think they also don’t care about appeal).

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