Topic: Make Menu only for Modded items = saving BAC and other large mods  (Read 7039 times)


Pr0man

« Reply #15 on: May 07, 2024, 07:34:52 PM »
Welp, time to also throw in my two cents - I'm one of the old legacy people who have purchased it, back in ye olden days, so I feel like I've got some experience under my belt. I eventually stumbled upon the BAC mod while looking on how to enhance my gameplay, given I've been playing UrW for quite a while, and as a result I basically never play without it anymore. Why? The game as it stands, is what you make of it: no overarching story, no fun little quirkiness to uncover, just pure, unadulterated survival, and that is great. HOWEVER - to be long time invested into something like that, the game needs to have enough content to support the long gamespan we are talking about in those runs, which is where the BAC mod comes in.

It appears that the game as of right now is simply limited in amount of keyspaces available to properly distribute all the menus and submenus when one wants to run the game with a big addition mod like BAC. Is it a problem now for vanilla? No, but depending on how UrW is going to be developing moving forward, this would eventually become an issue either way, simply because there is only so many combinations of menu and submenu buttons available, and a mod that adds quite a lot of things faithful to the setting has managed to approach this limit.

I am however very much agreeing with Erkka that it should be modders making sure the mod is compatible with the game evolving, but since the amount of mod entries have grown to absolutely massive sizes, with Brygun basically curating the quite huge BAC mod all by himself, this is gonna take a good while. And until either a deeper submenu system is coded in that allows to have an extra level deeper of menus to access, or an entirely different mod make menu as requested, where the entirety of mods can be placed in, this is also going to repeat itself - And this takes time. BAC wasn't even done fully converting the entries to the by then still out 3.83 when 3.84 dropped from what I've seen, as I have seen still additions just days prior the new update coming. And I have to say, it does not feel unreasonable to make a request towards the developers, accomodating the ever growing modding community because of the games limits. When BAC has already reached the point of having to scrap portations, as well as fusing components like nails and rivets, then that only really shows that this can truly become an issue going forward.

Night

« Reply #16 on: May 08, 2024, 06:10:37 AM »
Just wanted to post on this- i think an additional key for modded menus is a good idea.

I implemented my own version in my old mod extender project, using the ~ key would bring up an external menu with mods and their designated key. then, when one of the keys gets activated, it would get the menu def information and write it into the games menu def files, save, and then macro the keys into that menu, so you dont need to manually open up the crafting menu and all that, allows for infinite menus, as you're able to exchange mod menus with a single key (i used Z)

Could probably be done with a simple keyboard/autohotkey interface if you want to avoid UI, which is the way i had mine setup.

Idk if this is useful to anyone, but to give you an idea of how it works in code:

Code: [Select]
private void ModManager_KeyDown(object sender, KeyEventArgs e) // Hide/Show extended menus
        {
            if (e.KeyCode == Keys.Escape)
            {
                this.Hide();
                //MainForm.Show();
                //WindowHandling.SetForegroundWindow(DefaultData.URW.MainWindowHandle);
            }
            else
            {
                foreach (Keys k in AssignedKeys.Keys)
                {
                    if ((e.KeyCode | e.Modifiers) == k && !PlayerM.IsViewingRecipes && PlayerM.IsViewingWorld)
                    {
                        MainForm.GameEventHandler.HotkeyFunctions.RecipeCheck();
                        string GameKey = AssignedKeys[k][0].Split('-')[1];
                        string Menu = AssignedKeys[k][0].Split('*')[1];
                        File.WriteAllText(DefaultData.GameDirectory + Files.DefaultMenudef, AssignedKeys[k][0]);   // <---writes selected menu key to menu def then performs macro to access menu
                        switch (Menu)
                        {
                            case "MAKE": // Shift M, +
                                WindowHandling.PostMessage(RWMain.TargetProcess.MainWindowHandle, WindowHandling.WM_CHAR, '+', IntPtr.Zero);
                                Thread.Sleep(25);
                                WindowHandling.PostMessage(RWMain.TargetProcess.MainWindowHandle, WindowHandling.WM_CHAR, GameKey.ToCharArray()[0], IntPtr.Zero);
                                break;
                            case "COOKERY": // alt C, s + c
                                WindowHandling.PostMessage(RWMain.TargetProcess.MainWindowHandle, WindowHandling.WM_CHAR, 's', IntPtr.Zero);
                                Thread.Sleep(50);
                                WindowHandling.PostMessage(RWMain.TargetProcess.MainWindowHandle, WindowHandling.WM_CHAR, 'c', IntPtr.Zero);
                                Thread.Sleep(25);
                                WindowHandling.PostMessage(RWMain.TargetProcess.MainWindowHandle, WindowHandling.WM_CHAR, GameKey.ToCharArray()[0], IntPtr.Zero);
                                break;
                        }
                        this.Hide();
                        //MainForm.Show();
                        //WindowHandling.SetForegroundWindow(DefaultData.URW.MainWindowHandle);
                    }
                }
            }// else if ()
        }
URW Character Menu - Cheating menu by a player, for the players.
URW Character Designer - Design your characters sprite!

Brygun

« Reply #17 on: May 09, 2024, 01:05:39 AM »
Dedicated hotkey for mods would make sense.
But would that outrule current option to touch up/edit vanilla recipes?
I like that I don’t need to add new menudef to add say wooden mugs or making stakes from boards, just add those in the vanilla diy_glossary.

The most important and really only change Im asking for is a make menu the vanilla recipes updated by the dev never go into. You could edit the vanilla recipes just like now. For large mods changes in the vanilla in the update can cause a series of cascade issues. A lot of time by the caretakers has gone into shuffling things to fit into the 625 slots we have now. When "H" was picked for hafted that impacted a slot of 25 of those.

I'm only asking for a modders safe space.

Saami would go on adding things to the 625 slots as he moves along. It just that those changes wouldn't immediately collide with the large mods.

The mod space would be sitting at its version with no changes until such time as the modder gets to updating it.

Without a safe space it will be an ongoing cycle of immediate complaints and disruptions to those playing the large mods.

The management of the 625 recipes of the mod space is upto the modder. If there is a large modder, like BAC or others, its up to them to manage the mod-625.

Imagine if in the future Saami decides to start on player blacksmithing and adds his version of charcoal as one of the steps. Immediately the vanilla-charcoal isn't the same as mod-charcoal. Recipes people are in the middle of using don't work. To put in the vanilla-charcoal a menu space or menu letter was used creating problems in the shared-625 that doesn't exist if we have a mod-625 vs dev-625. With the split the mod recipes still exist and their version of charcoal is accessible for those in the middle of long tech tree work.

When a player sees an update for their mod is available they have a choice of when to make the transition. Thus a chance to finish any big project like making an iron helm.

Also for reading all the recipes at game launch, it’d make testing mods a massive pain. Edit, save mod. Shutdown, start game. Find a need to edit further.  Repeat.
No thanks!

I dont see how that would be necessary. Even now, other than menudef, you can have a game running and edit a recipe then go to the make->item and it loads the menu current in the text file. Nothing I've suggested would change that. Not sure if someone else was saying that or where this came from. You'd don't need to reload the game to check changes in a recipe.




Brygun

« Reply #18 on: May 09, 2024, 03:29:10 AM »
Just wanted to post on this- i think an additional key for modded menus is a good idea.

I implemented my own version in my old mod extender project,

Thank you.

I recalled it existed but at time didn't need to use it myself. Couldn't remember its name or maker. Thank you for bringing it up.

JP_Finn

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« Reply #19 on: May 09, 2024, 05:54:50 AM »
Brygun, the preload of mods was in Sami’s post; response 7, to Galgana’s question about biy_glossary limitations I.e. returning original recipe ingredients, not the currently loaded recipes ingredients. Currently if you build vanilla shelter, then comment that out, enable punt shelter from BAC, deconstruct the shelter; you’ll get punt shelter ingredients, not 3 slender trunks and 20 spruce twigs that the shelter was originally built with.

Brygun

« Reply #20 on: May 10, 2024, 07:47:58 AM »
Ah thanks.

I'm not asking for changes to the "B" build but the crafting "M" make due to the overlapping that is now happening as Saami adds crafting creating duplicates to what has been possible in the game for in some cases over 10 years. Craft menu space is needed.


Sami

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« Reply #21 on: May 10, 2024, 11:02:02 AM »
Good to hear more discussion and opinions on this matter.
There seem to be some differencies in how people perceive the modifications working in the game world, and from devs point of view it gets a few more extra layers and viewpoints to it.

To pinpoint it; modding code modifies the existing elements, more or less. It can't modify the properties the items don't have, or to add game mechanics that don't exist. For example, items have a name, and it can be modified to anything at all, but naming cat a dog doesn't make it essentially a dog. Nevertheless, lots of things and stuff to do can be created with the modding code.

With the above in mind, one must understand that even with a separate key or limitless mod entry space the player confusion with mod created items may continue happen when new mechanics are introduced. For example, if there are modded hafts or items put together from modded heads and hafts, they aren't working as genuine multi-part hafted items in the game. (I don't know actually how the game might deal with such but maybe the hafts won't wear out, the proper head doesn't drop when the item breaks, and so on.) Confusion and frustration may follow as players who aren't into modding will have to deal with the oddly and wrongly working items. It's not a problem for those who are aware of the modding and it's underlying mechanics, and maybe can even convert items as in Plotinus's example, but with the public mods who get into hands of average players the remedy or regarding information in these cases is best to come quickly.

Surely, a separate modding make menu will make things (also updating) easier and also keep the original and modified entries nicely separate. But it may be that for an average player who's used to create modded item A from, say a new Modders Make menu, they may fail to notice it having appeared as a genuine game feature or item to the original Make menu. So the confusion and game mechanics incompatibility with the modded items is evident to happen to some extent from time to time, even if there was limitless space. But it's ok when it's remembered, understood and addressed clearly to the mod users when necessary.

In any case, separate menu seems to get support from this small bunch of thread participants.
But it really doesn't happen just like this:
.Modders Make Menu. "Make menu" [effort:0] *CODING* %50%  /5m/
{Make menu}

;)
« Last Edit: May 10, 2024, 11:24:32 AM by Sami »
- Sami | UnReal World creator

Brygun

« Reply #22 on: May 10, 2024, 09:34:51 PM »

In any case, separate menu seems to get support from this small bunch of thread participants.
But it really doesn't happen just like this:
.Modders Make Menu. "Make menu" [effort:0] *CODING* %50%  /5m/
{Make menu}


You asked for the modding community input.

So we don't matter to you?

Just a "small bunch".

JP_Finn

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« Reply #23 on: May 11, 2024, 01:40:56 AM »
Bry, I think you missed the joke in the recipe. 5minutes with %50% skill boost and 0 effort too. I half expected it also to include [phys:stance]

PALU

« Reply #24 on: May 11, 2024, 08:58:05 AM »
Yes, I think a separate space for mods would be quite useful.

When mod functionality gets implemented into the game, mods ought to phase the mod version(s) out, and it would be useful if the mods then contained "translation" recipes for a transition period. Mod maintainers have limited amount of time available, though, so what's desirable might not be what's reasonable at all times.

Mostly it's up to the mod maintainers to adapt to the changes in the game, but a mod space seems like a reasonable game support (when "resources" are available to provide it).

I don't think it would hurt for the developers to look at mods occasionally to get some additional perspective on intended new functionality. Not as "this is how it has to be", but rather to provide aspects they may not have thought of. Also, a proper implementation would not be restricted by the same constraints mods have. However, the developers obviously have to manage their time, and looking at mods may well end up in the "no time for this now" bucket constantly.

Erkka

« Reply #25 on: May 11, 2024, 09:06:38 AM »

So we don't matter to you?

Just a "small bunch".

Huh? Honestly, I can't quite see where this comes from. So let's take an another look at what has been said and what has not been said:



In any case, separate menu seems to get support from this small bunch of thread participants.


To me this does not sound derogatory, not at all. When Sami says "this small bunch of thread participants" I read it as saying:

OK, earlier there was a mention that there have been 524 downloads for the mod, so let's assume that as a guideline to estimate the number of users. And then we have 6 members of the modding community participating in this thread. That means we have heard the opinion of 1.2% of the modding community.
[EDIT: while I was writing this we got the 7th voice, PALUs opinion]

Is 1.2% a small bunch? Is six persons a small bunch? Or should that somehow be felt as an insult, a way of saying "your opinion does not matter?" Honestly, sounds a bit off to me. And, the "ouch you hurt my feelings!" is always a tricky path to walk along - if one chooses to do it, then it probably would also be beneficial to start with spelling correctly the name of lead developer. It is only four letters, so shouldn't be that hard to spell, so if one constantly writes it in a wrong way, should that be taken as a sign of ignorance, derogatory gesture of non-mattering? Does not sound very constructive to me, better just focus on the actual facts that have been said, and work on the subject matter itself.

So, what we have then, at the moment:

- a suggestion to add a separate hotkey to bring up only the modded crafting recipes
- roughly 5 members saying that they support the idea
- one member saying that it would not be so very important for them, as they prefer to just update the mod code themselves to adapt to the new versions of UrW
- Sami signaling that he is still open to consider the idea, just saying that to implement it would take some extra work on his part - and that the amount of that extra work is probably a bit more than just a few lines of code.

What we do NOT know:

1. of the 518 mod users who have not commented in this thread, how many of them see that an extra hotkey would solve their problems
2. and how many of them see that the top priority should be just to have the mod actively maintained, so that it would stay compatible with the new versions of UrW

And the way I understand it, Sami mentioning about "small bunch" is a reference to the situation 1. - scientifically speaking, critically thinking, we have no way of knowing if our gallup of 6 people out of 524 gives an accurate representation of the general public mood or not. Not saying that the voice of 6 people does not matter, not insisting that it is not aligned with the majority. Just reminding that given the current evidence we can make an educated guess, not knowing for certain. And there is nothing wrong with it - in any case life is mostly about making decisions based on uncertain evidence.

Lastly, to me it still looks like that even in the case Sami added that extra hotkey to the vanilla game, it would not do very much to solve the situation 2, which probably needs to be addressed separately - at least if in the modding community there are people who care enough about large mods like BAC to maintain the mods. But if it so happens that there is no active modder to maintain a mod, then that just is the way things are at the moment? But, personally I see that mods matter, and modders matter, and modders matter to other modders, so it would seem rather natural that this leads to mods being maintained and updated to stay aligned with the new versions of the game.




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PALU

« Reply #26 on: May 12, 2024, 10:07:21 AM »
A tangent regarding the lead developer's name from someone who doesn't know Finnish but has a slight idea of how Finnish works:
- The name is Sami, and I would "translate" it into English spelling as "Sammi".
- The Saami is a people related to the Finns. They're spread, as a people, over the northern parts of Norway, Sweden, and Finland. They also used to live on the northern part of the Kola peninsula, but I don't know if they've been exterminated, forcibly relocated, or remnants still remain there.  Their name is pronounced with a long "a".

Erkka

« Reply #27 on: May 12, 2024, 11:08:49 AM »
Also, just to be sure, a few more word of clarification on my side:

I didn't mean to say that adding a new key to bring up modded recipes would not help at all with maintaining and keeping the mods up to date with new version of UrW.

What I was thinking was a scenario like this:

1. Sami adds the new hotkey
2. But somehow it happens that no-one from the modding community updates BAC recipes

Then, the way I see it, the underlying root problem would remain unsolved - the extra hotkey probably would make it easier to access all the recipes in the mod, but the confusion with vanilla items and modded items, and vanilla recipes and modded recipes would still continue to exists.

But, I do see the point represented by PALU and others; having that extra hotkey would help in the transition phase, when a new UrW version introduces new mechanics, and the mod needs some time to adapt, and a clean way to access "compatibility recipes" to transform old modded items to corresponding new vanilla items. And that is something I fully support, and to me this sounds like a good argument.

---

Also, personally I like the modding approach. And in my opinion Sami has been maintaining a fine balance between "an artistic indie coder following his inner vision" and "listening to the player suggestions and wishes" - not locking up in the ivory tower, nor getting lost in the endless swamp of "design by committee". I see my role as helping Sami to develop the game which fulfills his inner vision.

And, at the same time I see that some players wish for a fully moddable game, which would have the modding in-built into the core structures of the game engine. I find that an interesting idea, but I do understand that it would be an another game, not UrW but something different. Now, as some of you might already guess - I suggest that those interested in exploring the possibility of a fully moddable survival game could take a look at the Ancient Savo project and its modding system. (not wanting to hijack this thread, just my contribution to the theme of "yes, Enormous Elk does care about modders, modding matters")
UnReal World co-designer, also working on a small side project called Ancient Savo

Sami

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« Reply #28 on: May 22, 2024, 07:08:58 PM »
Here comes a brief catch-up with the replies I haven't yet responded. The discussion may continue and possible changes are being pondered accordingly. Amid all the other issues at hand, that is.

One ardent wish I have on the graphics-side of modding is support for additional truetile variant indices. As much as I enjoy seeing the sprite artworks that members of the community were inspired to create for replacer mods, the impossibility of simultaneously using all these files feels unfortunate.
For instance, tree terrain tiles are limited to displaying 2-3 variants at most (including broadleaf trees in winter mode), but I would love to wander through woodlands populated with a mix of Krutzel's Spirited Sprites having both its tall and standard-height trees alongside kullervo's trees.

Increasing the possible number of variants and for wider range of tiles could indeed enhance the experience regardless of it being thought of being a modding feature. In the future we're evidently need to undergo a greater graphics update, once again, which will require serious rewrite of the graphics engine. More variants possibility might get considered then, but for now it is a low priority. Plus, having started with mere ASCII graphics the game has always been developed from the content over graphics perspective. And it shows. ;)
(And as a curiosity the most frequently popping up graphics suggestion over the past decade has been probably to go for 3D.)

Quote
Streamlining mod integrations may sound nice in theory, but I'm worried that it will be a rocky road for a while before we reach a smooth grade.

I believe you're quite right with that. Hence the careful considerations will save both my and modders time.

Dedicated hotkey for mods would make sense.
But would that outrule current option to touch up/edit vanilla recipes?
I like that I don’t need to add new menudef to add say wooden mugs or making stakes from boards, just add those in the vanilla diy_glossary.
I would prefer the “easy editing” stay as is.

Easy and quick editing was indeed one of the key elements I had in mind when modding was introduced. Just drop in a snippet of modding code and it's in effect. Or to adjust the recipe if you'd personally prefer it the other way.
With dedicated mods make menu there would be indeed separation between the original recipes and modded recipes, both in menu level and editable text files level. Of course the original diy_* etc. files would still remain editable, and new file snippets could be added, and the edits and additions for those would appear in the original make menu. Mod recipes would appear in mods make menu. So with an example of making wooden stakes you could still quickly add your own "wooden stakes from boards" diy_* snippet to the original recipes and it would appear in the original Make menu.
Or you could also make your own lumber (or whatever you want to name it) category as a mod diy_* and it would appear there in the mod make menu.

Quote
Also for reading all the recipes at game launch, it’d make testing mods a massive pain. Edit, save mod. Shutdown, start game. Find a need to edit further.  Repeat.

Hmm. I'm not sure if I managed to describe it correctly. I'll try again.
Let's assume you're creating your own mod, and there are no other mods installed.
You would not get any extra hassle, the game wouldn't notify you of any modding conflicts.
Let's say your own mod would have recipes for four items: Round item, square item, long item and short item.
Excellent. Now let's imagine Player X likes your mod and installs it.
After a while Player X decides to create his own mod for crafting long item, as he prefers it to be done the other way. Player X is very happy with the rest of the items in your mod and doesn't want to touch them.
Now if Player X would install his own mod on top of your mod there would be two mods with a recipe for long item.
In this case the game would check and somehow confirm if the player would like to use your recipe or Player X's recipe for crafting long item.
Something like this needs to be done anyway if the problem now is that all the space and available entries get eaten up and reserved. Otherwise mods that would modify or add the same recipes to any extent can't co-exist. Yes, they can't co-exist currently either, and players need to shuffle with loaders, manual editing and stuff. But to invest time to add a separate mod make menu which would exclude different mods to co-exists once it's (yet again) filled all up would be waste of (my) time from my perspective.

Welp, time to also throw in my two cents - I'm one of the old legacy people who have purchased it, back in ye olden days, so I feel like I've got some experience under my belt.
I eventually stumbled upon the BAC mod while looking on how to enhance my gameplay, given I've been playing UrW for quite a while, and as a result I basically never play without it anymore. Why? The game as it stands, is what you make of it: no overarching story, no fun little quirkiness to uncover, just pure, unadulterated survival, and that is great.
HOWEVER - to be long time invested into something like that, the game needs to have enough content to support the long gamespan we are talking about in those runs, which is where the BAC mod comes in.

Yeah, after years or decades of roaming the unreal world it's truly so in my opinion too that modded stuff can answer to "hmm, what should I do next" feelings, or to the classical "end-game" boredom. The game is indeed very much what you make of it, even though I would phrase the rest of sentence a differently. And well, as far as I am concerned it's very much confirmed that the game has enough content to support long gamespan. Which of course is debatable and varies between the players and playstyle. Heh, and with a such freedom allowing beast of like UrW the thing is that there's never enough content for everyone, no matter how much is added. (This a fact pretty much all the devs have to live with.)

Quote
And I have to say, it does not feel unreasonable to make a request towards the developers, accomodating the ever growing modding community because of the games limits.

We do have suggestions forum, where suggestions can be posted, and we are constantly - and I truly mean constantly - being asked, requested, suggested and sometimes plain commanded to do this and that.
With good manners suggestions are not unreasonable. What is unreasonable is to expect all of them to happen.
However, for years already we've passed the critical mass point of suggestion flood and still fortunately remain a rare example of developers actually (still) communicating with the players and taking their thoughts into consideration.
If the probable modders are counted in hundreds the players are nowadays counted in tens of thousands.

Speaking of game limits, I can't resist of inventing a developer's aphorism/koan of the day:
Does Tetris game have a limit of not featuring table tennis mode?

I don't think it would hurt for the developers to look at mods occasionally to get some additional perspective on intended new functionality. Not as "this is how it has to be", but rather to provide aspects they may not have thought of. Also, a proper implementation would not be restricted by the same constraints mods have. However, the developers obviously have to manage their time, and looking at mods may well end up in the "no time for this now" bucket constantly.

I think we have quite good understanding of the most wanted features from the suggestions sections already, where also new things to craft are also popping up. I also get the picture that things that are on the development roadmap are being modded also. For us, to stay on track, it's the suggestions section where we expect the new ideas and features to be presented and there they remain nicely and easily accessible when looking for new features consider. And for most of the suggestions I usually get "yes, yes, that would be nice, in time, hopefully." feeling ;) My personal to-do list actually doesn't go shorter but longer with every version release. This may sound odd, but it's a fact.
- Sami | UnReal World creator

GrimmSpector

« Reply #29 on: May 30, 2024, 12:16:04 AM »
Ok, so I want to address the "small bunch", and take it as you will. Modders are definitely a minority, and in some games those who use mods are also a majority. The main goal of mods should be to increase a players play time, so they remain engaged with the game. I think that's something BAC achieves, but as stated every update is a potential issue and not just for this mod, the collisions can happen with small mods too, leading to confusion for players who are not modders but use mods. I'm also not convinced that the figure stated about mod downloads really expresses the number of users who have likely used BAC over the lifetime of the game let alone other mods. This really isn't just a conversation about BAC, it's a question of how can we make the CREATION of mods easier and also make the USE of mods easier, to extend the playtime of the average player, isn't it?

I agree that it doesn't solve all ills, but it seems like a good relatively low cost option compared with the alternatives and better design ideas (like having an item identifier system that allows preloading/overlapping/replacement as stated). Is it a good use of developer time? Well that's a question I think we'll disagree on, but I think the potential improvement to the average player engagement time might be worth it, not just for BAC and current mods, but for future users making new mods that may be easier to maintain and therefore longer lived. Things like BAC do not occur commonly in a lot of larger modding communities because of how difficult it becomes to maintain, so any barrier is a problem.

You're also likely not going to get a TON of interaction on this thread because a) a lot of people are interested but don't know enough to contribute to the discussion, even some modders since modding here is so simple they don't need to know any programming at all, and b) people ebb and flow to this game, picking it up and putting it down often so the number of active people isn't always high, I tend to look only when there's an update and if I like it I play it for a few months and I know others do to. Something to consider.

Thanks Brygun for BAC all these years and thanks Sami for the game. Appreciate you both very much.

 

anything