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  #1  
Old 2014-06-27, 21:44
Joshua Miles's Avatar
Joshua Miles Joshua Miles is offline
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Modding Summary

Sorry for starting yet another thread, but felt that the other two should be kept separate incase any observers or other members were having the same problems. I'm new to the modding world, and am trying to learn as much as I can before I start, (we'll never finish a project if we keep learning the same things over and over again for ourselves in trial and error, right?) and I think I'm begging to understand the whole picture, just wanted to make sure I am understanding properly.

So here is my understanding of LBA 1's resources thus far; if any one could offer advice or correct my mistakes I would greatly appreciate it:

HQR archives; store other file types, editable by LBA pack editor, and LBArchitect

Grid files; which make up the world, editable by LBArchitect.

Brick files; which are used to build grids, editable by LBArchitect

Palettes; which store the colors used in the game. (not editable?)

3D actor entities (3D.hqr); which associates the body's of actors with their animations, editable by File3D editor


Animations; the movment of actors, editable by LBAnimator

3D actor bodies; editable by LBAnimator

2D game sprites; editable by LBAimagecreator

Text archives; contain game dialog, editable by LBA text editor

FLA films; used for cutscenes, editable by LBA screen viewer

Scripts, control the actions of the game, editable by LBArchitect




Midi files; game music, editable by any audio software that supports xmi

Sound samples; game sound effects and dialog, editable by any audio software that supports VOC



LUN files, purpose unknown, not editable.

So, have I missed anything, are there any other file types I will need to hex edit to make my own mod, are there any major limitations to these editing programs? (limitations that are not obvious from a quick exploration of the program, I mean) And does anyone have any other advice regarding modding? Just wanted to make sure I was all caught up before starting. started. Thank you so much, yall are awesome.
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  #2  
Old 2014-07-07, 14:17
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xesf xesf is offline
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That's most of it I think.

The palettes can be created with LBA Image Creator or LBA Screen Viewer I think, can't quite remember.

You will definitely find limitations, special in the 3D side of things. It's really hard to change 3D assets at the moment.

The advice I can give you is that try not to change that much in the game, only if it's Scene related stuffs which you actually have a good tool for that.
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  #3  
Old 2014-07-07, 14:48
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J McKalling J McKalling is offline
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How much of LBA1 is really covered with our modding tools, what exactly are we missing yet? That's what I really like to know.
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  #4  
Old 2014-07-07, 15:02
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Joshua Miles Joshua Miles is offline
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If my list up there is correct, nearly everything non engine is covered. Done a lot of poking around in the LBA files and LBA file information, and we can edit nearly every extension- though 3D editing is still rather limited, as Mr. Font notes above. I haven't been able to test LBAnimator yet, as it has a bug on later versions of windows, but all the other programs seem to work just fine, editing just about all the LBA specific resources.
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  #5  
Old 2014-07-08, 05:13
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marcosmapf marcosmapf is offline
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Well, you can always run a Virtual Machine software with Windows Xp/98 or even linux in order to test it out. I don't even dare to go into modding, since my knowledge of the subject is very little, and I have very little free time, but I wish you a good luck with it
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  #6  
Old 2014-10-07, 22:27
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xesf xesf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J McKalling View Post
How much of LBA1 is really covered with our modding tools, what exactly are we missing yet? That's what I really like to know.
3D models and animations is our limitations at the moment. We don't fully understand the format, there's few things missing that while saving new files get screwed. Will be easy also to know how the original editor worked to clone something similar.
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  #7  
Old 2014-10-07, 22:49
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J McKalling J McKalling is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xesf View Post
3D models and animations is our limitations at the moment. We don't fully understand the format, there's few things missing that while saving new files get screwed. Will be easy also to know how the original editor worked to clone something similar.
Ah that was kinda the answer I was looking for. I love that we've got this far with everything, but it's about what exactly are we still missing, right? Is there a way to achieve figuring out those models and animations? I'd like to see, after twenty years, to actually complete our arsenal of LBA1! Ready to fire at LBA universe-newbees so they can level up! Or to help create lovely new stuff with us.

Could there be software that (I don't know anything about modeling, sorry) you could use to fill up the bits and pieces of your understanding that are still missing? We can't have Twinsen clones that are all greeny and chunky, it's got to be finished already

Or maybe is there a way to get the info from someone of the team? Some Q&A that might help? Something solid from them maybe? Or soft, like... software?
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Old 2014-10-08, 13:25
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xesf xesf is offline
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I had a chance to ask it in various occasions for Team's help, special to improve TwinEngine code and of course our tools.
The team were actual positive on giving that info but we never receive it.

Now with LBA1 re-release for mobile devices this has became impossible.

We can do it ourselves but that will required a lot of time and effort, and most of us this days doesn't have it. It's probably the reason LBA Modding scene is kind dead at the moment.
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  #9  
Old 2014-10-08, 16:13
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J McKalling J McKalling is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xesf View Post
...Now with LBA1 re-release for mobile devices this has became impossible.
...
What do you mean? Why is exactly what impossible?

Quote:
...We can do it ourselves but that will required a lot of time and effort...
Obviously... All right, unfortunate
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Threads: News, Introduction, Discussion, Bugs collection || Content: Characters, Enemies, Items
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  #10  
Old 2014-10-08, 16:38
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xesf xesf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J McKalling View Post
What do you mean? Why is exactly what impossible?
For the team to gives us that info.
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[Discuss]|[Download]|[Changes]|[SourceCode]|[Issues]


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  #11  
Old 2014-10-08, 16:44
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Do you mean because that release makes the game live again, and closed source?
Or because the game has been altered already to fit the new medium?

In any case, I can't see why they can't. It is a separate game basically, or isn't it? It's a different audience in terms of platform...

*Edit:
I think I see it now, because it is a live income again, they can't open up the software because it is the same used for this mobile version... Would be concurrency, right? I'm not really good with marketing'
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Threads: News, Introduction, Discussion, Bugs collection || Content: Characters, Enemies, Items
Words come in all sizes. But even if they fit you,
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Good for everyone is finding yourself first,
and then the good in others second.
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  #12  
Old 2014-10-08, 17:53
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Battler Battler is offline
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Except I don't see how giving out information on how to mod the game hurt sales. As long as they enact a proper EULA saying that mods may not bypass game protections (CD check or whatever) and that executable files may not be distributed alongside the .HQR files, they should be fine.
After all, look at Minecraft, it has a thriving modding community and yet it's still profitable enough that Microsoft were willing to spend $2.5 billion to buy the company making it (Mojang), and this after Mojang kept making tons of money on the game. And Minecraft, being Java, has no secrets from the modders - decompiling and deobfuscation tools exist so we know every nook and cranny of the code.
So sorry but I just don't see how revealing the file formats and/or releasing some modding tools could hurt LBA sales. If anything, it could boost the sales because with mods getting released, people would have even more incentive to buy the game as mods would add to the potential gameplay time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xesf
We can do it ourselves but that will required a lot of time and effort, and most of us this days doesn't have it. It's probably the reason LBA Modding scene is kind dead at the moment.
I am trying to continue development, but the problem is, all of my tools are made in Visual Basic 6 which is getting old and I need to go through an increasing amount of hoops to make my programs compatible with the latest Windows version.
Now that I know I am allowed to fork Zink's programs, at least those released under GPL v2, I am going to fork LBA Package Editor, add features to it, one of which being a plugin system which will allow anyone to add functionality to the program.
I also think we have enough knowledge to make reasonable mods, even the 3D models - there are only 4 intelligent species on Twinsun anyway, so we can easily make new characters by recoloring the existing ones. The reason why the modding scene died is because all projects, without exception, attempted to exaggerated ultra-mods designed to gain awe.
The fact that the LBA Modifications section on the MBN is essentially run by someone who has no time to keep it updated, is further enforcing the death of modding.
Also, I do have lots of time. And I'm even continuing my own project (LBA: The Great Rebellion), but when noone bothers even checking that section (which is heavily ironic, considering the massive peer pressure I got years ago to allow everyone to contribute ideas to the project, and yet after I did just that, noone shows interest), I'm just not motivated to allot more time to it.
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