Friday, 19 February 2010

The Skin Problem!

I made an unfortunate discovery this week. If a skin is applied to a PC on entering the module (to allow the builder to make custom alterations), and the PC equips/unequips a shield, then the armour penalty points go haywire! I spent some time trying to work out what was going on, but eventually gave up and made a post in the Bioware forums, which has been receiving attention from some of the best minds to try to resolve the issue. To date, the problem has not been resolved, which could be a bit of a blow for builders who like to make use of this facility. UPDATE: With some help, I believe I have resolved the issue by using an adapted "creature bite" instead of the original "creature skin" method. (See the linked post for the discussion.)

Fortunately, I was able to rewrite the system I was using the PC Skin for. Obsidian had released some new functions in the last patch that allowed me to work my idea in from a new scripting angle. I won't go into any more details than that, as I am keeping the game play secret for the time being. Suffice to say, it involves a whole new GUI and gives versatility to the player.

The Order Of Crafting Ingredients

In the last two weeks I have been working on another side quest. Like all side quests, while not essential, it does help provide the PC with more resources to better handle the main quest. In the process of writing this quest, I made the discovery that some recipes (rewritten in the crafting 2da file) were failing to work. After some experimenting, it appeared that the order in which the ingredients were listed in the 2da file were having an impact on whether the recipe was recognised or not! This surprised me, as I always thought the order they were listed did not matter, but I found that for at least two tested recipes, I had to reverse the order of the items as they had been entered in the table. E.g. Instead of cft_ess_earth1,NW_IT_GEM011 I had to enter NW_IT_GEM011,cft_ess_earth1.

Has anybody else noticed this? Or am I missing something?

Early Intro Text

As well as general writing, I even started to give some thought to the opening movie, which like Soul Shaker, will most likely just be a simple voice over text. The text will probably be something along the lines of:
"Enter a world with a growing new Empire."
"Into a time where the magical formulae have been rewritten."
"And the warrior's blade is not the weapon it once was."

"Search both the depth of your soul and the lands of Althéa."
"For the path that leads you to your destiny."
"And forges a new way for the rest of the world to follow."

5 comments:

Eguintir Eligard said...

For that video idea, if its going to be as simple as that a cut scene would work, probably even look better. You can still use a graphic and sound for conversations remember. I like to avoid the movies until absolutely necessary as I don't like how they are forced to only be used at once spot (module begin) and I have that lack of control, and the fact they take up a bunch of space and have lossy compression.

Sometime you might have an idea that requires it but for what you mentioned the cut scene sounds par for the course.

Lance Botelle (Bard of Althéa) said...

Hi Eguintir,

That would certainly save a lot of fiddling around. I had forgotten how easy NWN2 had made incorporating both sound and images into a conversation to show like this.

I had even done this in a very early test using a conversation and had forgotten! Thanks for reminding me. :)

Lance.

Eguintir Eligard said...

My intro is a map and a voice over, and then a different graphic with the same map but zoomed in and with a line showing where the route to get there is found. Works well and then people dont miss the entire video if they click anywhere while its playing

Nacaal said...

I like the intro text you wrote!
But what is a "skin"?

Lance Botelle (Bard of Althéa) said...

Hi Eguintir,

Yours sounds like the kind of thing I might do. :)

Hi Nacaal,

A "skin" is a useful item a builder can use to apply different properties to a PC that cannot be touched by such things as spells.

It is an invisible item that sits on the PC and does not take any room in their inventory.

E.g. If I wanted to apply a spell like effect to stay on the PC permanently, I could apply the effect to the skin and the PC also suffers the effect. They could not remove the effect by casting a removal spell on themselves, because the property is being applied by the unobtainable skin rather than on the PC themselves.

It's not unlike having an item in our inventory that gives the PC a property of some kind. The only difference is the PC might be able to drop the normal inventory item, whereas a "skin" is somethig they have no control over.

Lance.