what do you need to mod


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#1 Spartan012

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Posted 17 March 2005 - 06:48 PM

I would like to mod xcom ufo defence but don't know where to start. If I need a certain program, or need to learn a programming code. I'm not talking just editing the stats of things , I want to edit the images and stats. I want to make my own weapons, base facilities, soldiers, and maps. YOu probably get this asked alot, but please take the time to help out a beginner.

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#2 Hobbes

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Posted 17 March 2005 - 10:32 PM

For the maps you need daishiva's Map Editor (www.daishiva.com) - it requires Microsoft .NET installed (50+ mb download) or you can try the other editors on the downloads section of this site.

To edit the sprites of the units and weapons and the images of the terrain tiles you need daishiva's PCK View (same address as above, doesn't require .NET)

To change the physical characteristics of the tiles that compose a terrain you will need MCD Editor, by Koralt, although this is sightly more complicated than it seems.
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#3 Spartan012

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Posted 17 March 2005 - 11:38 PM

Thanks for the help, I have been searching the web on how to do this for sometime. It will take 3 hours to download the .net thing(crappy diel-up) so I will have to wait till tomorrow to start.
where do I find the MCD editor, is it on the site some where.
thanks again

~Spartan012

#4 daishiva

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Posted 18 March 2005 - 02:38 AM

Hobbes, on Mar 17 2005, 02:32 PM, said:

To edit the sprites of the units and weapons and the images of the terrain tiles you need daishiva's PCK View (same address as above, doesn't require .NET)

This is incorrect, you need .net to run pckview.
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#5 NKF

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Posted 18 March 2005 - 03:56 AM

You might as well get it anyway. Who knows what other programs may need it. If you buy yourself a copy of any .net programming language (or the whole set), it would definitely come with it.

Learning a programming language (any. C/C++, Java, etc) (regardless of the many 'flavour's) is useful if you want to make a few home grown editors. But more importantly, you need to understand the file formats in order to be able to make your editors or do any manual editing via hex editor. This takes time and a lot of patience if you try to work everything out yourself.

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#6 Bomb Bloke

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Posted 18 March 2005 - 12:25 PM

I'd like to think I've developed a fairly comprehensive guide to the format of certain key file files (by stealing the work of NKF and DaiShiva  :D ), but until you have a good understanding of hex, I dunno how useful that information would be...

So, what's your current level of computer understanding? Do you understand binary? Hex? Standard programming structure?
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#7 Spartan012

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Posted 18 March 2005 - 02:01 PM

right now I only know html, which doesn't really help me out in this field. I do want to know these types of programming, whether it be binary, hex or any other programming that can help me out. so if anyone could point me in the direction of some online tuturiols that I can learn from that would be great.

I downloaded the editors this morning, so I'm off to have fun.

#8 Hobbes

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Posted 18 March 2005 - 06:55 PM

The MCD Editor is available at the XCOM section of this site. You won't really need it unless you want to create new tiles of your own, since it's much easier to simply use the existing X-COM ones.
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#9 Spartan012

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Posted 24 March 2005 - 12:34 AM

I'm back and have a few questions. I have spent most of my time looking at the map editor and been having blast. But I have a few things I don't under stand

1. I went to the path of the farm maps and added a new map. And then went and edited to what I wanted. I've made about five farm maps. But when I play the game and and take a ship down in the farm area, none of my maps load. Is this just bad luck, or did I do it wrong?

2. When making a new map (farm) can I use tiles from say an urban terrain. I know I can't edit a current map like this or it messes up, but sence none of my maps load, I don't know if I can do it with a new map.

3. Last one is on spawning. Does it matter what number spawn I use. Because on the default maps they keep jumping from 1 to 10. Is it like the higher the number the more chance of an alian spawning there.

I would be happy with any help, so I can get back to creating maps.

#10 Hobbes

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Posted 24 March 2005 - 02:09 AM

Spartan012, on Mar 24 2005, 12:34 AM, said:

1. I went to the path of the farm maps and added a new map. And then went and edited to what I wanted. I've made about five farm maps. But when I play the game and and take a ship down in the farm area, none of my maps load. Is this just bad luck, or did I do it wrong?

There are 2 ways of using your maps on the original game. The first is simply to replace the original map file on the /MAPS folder of UFO, say for instance replace Culta01.map with a map you created. If you are substituting a map of City you must keep the original map sizes, otherwise the game will be unstable or crash. I have no idea for the other terrains though.
The second way is to get XComUtil, edit the .cfg to add the new maps to the list of maps and then use its "Prompt before ship attack" to choose the terrain before you jump into Tactical.

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2. When making a new map (farm) can I use tiles from say an urban terrain. I know I can't edit a current map like this or it messes up, but sence none of my maps load, I don't know if I can do it with a new map.

The tile limit for any map (the number of MCD entries it can have) is 255. From this value you need to subtract 2 for the blanks.* terrain which is assigned automatically by the game, plus the number of mcd entries to place the Skyranger (65), leaving you with only 185 mcd entries. But from this you also need to take away the mcd entries used by UFOs, leaving you with less than 90 entries for tiles in all terrains except for City, Mars, XBase and UBase.
When simply replacing the files on the /MAPS you have to use the terrain files attributed originally to that terrain. However, you can edit the terrain files to replace tiles you don't want with other ones, using PCK View for the images and MCD Editor for the tiles attributes.
But if you use XComUtil's cfg file and use the prompt option you can add entirely new terrains to be used instead of the old ones, composed of how many maps you want and combining the terrain files you like (you'll have to keep in the mind the 185 mcd limit though).

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3. Last one is on spawning. Does it matter what number spawn I use. Because on the default maps they keep jumping from 1 to 10. Is it like the higher the number the more chance of an alian spawning there.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


You are correct.

I've written a map designing guide for UFO2000 that you can get here. Most of it is related to UFO2000 but it explains the basics and includes a list of all the mcd files for UFO and TFTD and the number of their entries.
You can also get more information concerning the RMP files and the route nodes on my posts on this thread.

Finally, to try several examples of modified terrains like i described above go to my site (link on the signature) and check the Mods section.
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#11 BladeFireLight

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Posted 25 April 2005 - 02:10 AM

Spartan012, on Mar 23 2005, 05:34 PM, said:

3. Last one is on spawning. Does it matter what number spawn I use. Because on the default maps they keep jumping from 1 to 10. Is it like the higher the number the more chance of an alian spawning there.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


This is a point of discussion and depends on who you ask.  I dont think any one has done enought testing with a large enought sample set. I did over 1000 tests but i only used one alien. the end result was that the number did not matter.  Others have done ~20 tests with a 10 aliens and said the higher the number the more likely the spawn point is used. Untill some one does a larger number of tests I will remain skeptical.

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