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random_soldier1337

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#1 7 years ago

So I'm thinking of getting into modding once Skyrim's Creation Kit comes out. Thing is that I want to make some intense mods that will require third party programs as in making models or coding/recoding parts of a mod/the game.

So I was wondering what would be some of the modding tools or you know programs that are used for universally making mods for nearly every PC game? For e.g. C/C++/Java compiler, 3dsmax etc.

I know you all are going to say I should learn to actually properly use these first and yes that is what I am going to do before going nuts about modding.

I do know a bit of C but most of it was only used in my class to program 8051 micro-controllers so I am not sure how much of it would be modding relevant.




Supa

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#2 7 years ago

3ds Max for character/weapon/assets, and most of the programmers I know use VS, although I'm sure Eclipse will work as well.




Nemmerle Forum Mod

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#3 7 years ago

Sure. The most common programming language is called logic. You may think I'm being sarcastic but I'm not. Programming languages differ largely in vocabulary - and even there most of the things are named in ways that you can guess what they do fairly easily. Even vocabulary is generally a function of what command libraries you tell the compiler to include.

Learning a programming language is very much a matter of 'this uses X so I'll use X.' If you know what you want the program to do you can generally pick up what you need to know in terms of what commands to give it in a couple of hours. Knowing what you want it to do is the tricky bit that requires you have a bit of logic though.

random_soldier1337;5586692I know you all are going to say I should learn to actually properly use these first and yes that is what I am going to do before going nuts about modding.

God no. I doubt you'll remember anything if you do it that way. Learn to program in X hours books and things like that, that aren't applied to a specific goal, tend to teach you very little over a very long span of time. The only books of real worth for programming are reference manuals, and things that talk about problems programmers face in general.

Jump in at the deep end, try to do something. If you're interested in modding start by trying to add a ship to a game or something - even if your ship looks like shit. Just find a tutorial online that'll tell you how to do something you want to do in a game and go do it.




*Daedalus

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#4 7 years ago

^ That. Nem's best point (IMO) being about the ship adding. Start by trying to add a cube with a cone on one end to the game, or something like that. Then try and add textures to it, then start improving it.

Programming books - and this is from experience - are 99% dead weight. Most often than not, you're going to be stuck with a very small and very specific something, in which case you can post on a forum and get the answer pretty quick, Google it, and maybe find it straight away, or hack away at it with trial and error until it does what you want.

Paint.NET is great for textures and the like. I doubt it has anywhere near as much as CS5 or something, but it's free, and I've used it to modify textures in games before with great results.

Milkshape is a good modelling program. I've never really done any modelling, so I can't say for sure, but from what I've heard it's a stripped down version of 3DMax.




random_soldier1337

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#5 7 years ago

Nemmerle;5586722Sure. The most common programming language is called logic. You may think I'm being sarcastic but I'm not. Programming languages differ largely in vocabulary - and even there most of the things are named in ways that you can guess what they do fairly easily. Even vocabulary is generally a function of what command libraries you tell the compiler to include.

Learning a programming language is very much a matter of 'this uses X so I'll use X.' If you know what you want the program to do you can generally pick up what you need to know in terms of what commands to give it in a couple of hours. Knowing what you want it to do is the tricky bit that requires you have a bit of logic though.

God no. I doubt you'll remember anything if you do it that way. Learn to program in X hours books and things like that, that aren't applied to a specific goal, tend to teach you very little over a very long span of time. The only books of real worth for programming are reference manuals, and things that talk about problems programmers face in general.

Jump in at the deep end, try to do something. If you're interested in modding start by trying to add a ship to a game or something - even if your ship looks like shit. Just find a tutorial online that'll tell you how to do something you want to do in a game and go do it.[/QUOTE]

[QUOTE=*Daedalus;5586730]^ That. Nem's best point (IMO) being about the ship adding. Start by trying to add a cube with a cone on one end to the game, or something like that. Then try and add textures to it, then start improving it.

Programming books - and this is from experience - are 99% dead weight. Most often than not, you're going to be stuck with a very small and very specific something, in which case you can post on a forum and get the answer pretty quick, Google it, and maybe find it straight away, or hack away at it with trial and error until it does what you want.

Paint.NET is great for textures and the like. I doubt it has anywhere near as much as CS5 or something, but it's free, and I've used it to modify textures in games before with great results.

Milkshape is a good modelling program. I've never really done any modelling, so I can't say for sure, but from what I've heard it's a stripped down version of 3DMax.

Be glad to follow your advice guys. So here's what I'm thinking for Skyrim:

1. First I want to fix up the problems that Nem seems to mentioning in the Skyrim thread which I also seem to hate. Namely, not being able to block unless your left hand is free or unless you are playing sword-and-board style. For this I am probably thinking that there might need to be a few new animations for magic being used while having something in both hands or a blocking animation for dual wielding and I might need to add in conditions for these that overwrite the original conditions for activating the shielding animation under said conditions and having the shield action register so that calculations are made for proper reduction of HP or other actions to take place.

For this I will probably need something create animations for such actions (will I need to create new models or textures for these animations given that I will only be using vanilla assets and spell anims?), then I will need to convert them to a proper file format that can be decoded by Skyrim to and then open up the animations.bsa and add them and then recompress the bsa and replace the original bsa. What all tools would I need for these actions? Furthermore, I have no idea for how I would integrate the conditions for the activation of these animations and the registering of these actions just so seamlessly that it wouldn't seem like a third party program being active during the game and that all this stuff was actually present from the get go. Again, tools? And a bit of advice on this?

2. I want to create a few models and rig them/animate them so I can have something like a fully functioning pegasus or some crap like that in Skyrim so everybody can lulz around on flying horses or something. I believe I would have to make a model in addition to following the somewhat loose outline I covered in Number 1. Probably need to do some AI modification here also so that AI can also ride them...

3. I want to make the game look photo-realistic (high res textures, realistic lighting effects, color grading, saturation, shaders, etc.). However, since I operate on a multimedia laptop rather than a high/super high end gaming PC I'll probably have to fool around on this rig so I can optimize it for my rig so I can at least get 25+ FPS. This shouldn't be too hard once I can learn to create and optimize textures. Same with shaders. I just have to make them convert them to Skyrim format. Then it's all just a matter of putting them in the right folders for which Beth has already made provisions.

4. Make an FPS limiter for the tough times. There's something for that already there on Skyrim Nexus but it isn't exactly working out for me so yeah... no idea how to make something for this and integrate it into the main program. Not as straight forward as making shaders and textures and putting them in folders that are just sitting right there.

5. AI modification because the AI isn't actively aggressive and it's almost too easy to sometimes win against them with guerilla hit and run tactics even when there is a massive level difference and they can clearly surround you. Again, no idea how to go about this for the same reason as previous.

6. Make some badass super hard hardcore DMC style combat mod. Again, new animations easily placed, making them a different issue, though... using them, again, dunno as in 1st. Probably would need something to fix out kinks in collision detection and the like because a similar mod I played for Oblivion had quite a few problems with this.

7. Possible Alternative to 6; Make it so that you actually have to hit what is in the cross hair to hit your target and the target is fixed in a similar manner that they can't fucking stab in certain direction and still hit you from 10 m to the side. Probably make it somewhat animation based too so that slash from side to side actually works like it would in real life rather than hitting whatever is given within an arc of certain steradians. Make the AI smarter too according to this because mods in oblivion that fixed this didn't make them smart enough to realize this had actually happened. Collision detection rearrangement required with this. Again, no idea how to go about this.

If y'all can, please do offer some advice as to where to start of for the ideas where I clearly have no idea what I am talking about.

But otherwise, I'm just asking for the tools I would be required to accomplish these tasks with as many of them being such that they could be used universally for all games or at least a large selection of games.

EDIT: New idea; how about a 1st person camera based on a third person camera with it's origin set at the bridge of the nose between the eyes so it's like an extremely life like and dynamic camera and stuff doesn't happen like having spin animation for an attack in third person but no spinning occurring in first person or the fact that your shadow and legs and arms and body don't magically disappear in first person. Sort of like Mount and Blade's dynamic camera where if you ragdoll and spin out of control while dying in first person, you actually see what the Player Character would see.

Thanks

[COLOR=Red]Note: [/COLOR]Out of all the suggestions that you make please suggest freeware because it is not possible at the moment for me to buy software.




Nemmerle Forum Mod

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#6 7 years ago

Generally altering a game's underlying mechanics is one of the more tricky things. In some cases the mechanic is written into the game's code, rather than being referenced in other files, and thus effectively impossible to alter - at least with any degree of ease - since that code is compiled into a form that computers can run before it is sent on to you.

That said, you'd really need to ask people who know about Skyrim how to mod Skyrim. I'd recommend you go look around on their forums and see whether there are any beginners guides out there. Maybe download the construction kit if it's out yet and see what sort of documentation, if any, that comes with.




Andron Taps Forum Mod

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#7 7 years ago

Nemmerle;5586722Sure. The most common programming language is called logic. You may think I'm being sarcastic but I'm not. Programming languages differ largely in vocabulary - and even there most of the things are named in ways that you can guess what they do fairly easily. Even vocabulary is generally a function of what command libraries you tell the compiler to include.

Learning a programming language is very much a matter of 'this uses X so I'll use X.' If you know what you want the program to do you can generally pick up what you need to know in terms of what commands to give it in a couple of hours. Knowing what you want it to do is the tricky bit that requires you have a bit of logic though.

I cannot agree with this more. Really the best thing you can do when it comes to game modding, is just getting your hands dirty and experimenting. I don't have Skyrim yet, so I don't know if it includes the construction set, but the Morrowind/Oblivion set was pretty easy to get familiar with, especially after reading a few tutorials.

But like Nemmerle said, a lot of it is just the ability to use logical reasoning. It's just like mathematics, and that's why mathematicians often make good philosophers, because I'm sure you know that a lot of what math is is coming to conclusions based on logical thinking and reasoning.

And even with computing in general, it's not so much about how much code or how many functions you can memorize, it's more about thinking of something and finding out how to achieve it.

I made this mod for MoH: AA a while ago after experimenting and learning from the way the programmers coded the game. That'll give you an idea of just how simple it really is if you give a bit of time to getting familiar with the game engine and style:

http://medalofhonor.filefront.com/file/zzzzuserSpAllies;99597

I don't visit the JK forums a lot, but I've seen quite a bit of your posts, so I have every confidence that you'll have no problem getting accustomed to Skyrim and releasing some cool mods :)


"I'd shush her zephyr." ~ Zephyr.



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#8 7 years ago

Yep I'll agree, best way to learn modding/scripting/programming/modelling is to do it, and most importantly, do it for fun. I originally learned the whole worldbuilding thing on the Construction Sets for Morrowind and Oblivion, and learned scripting and modelling on ArmA 1 and 2, then later with Python and C++ to write programs for stuff I needed to do. In all of this I was doing it just for fun, looking at it from the point of view of a sort of extended options menu, allowing you to customize the game exactly how you want it.

So to learn, I would suggest just find a game that you actually play and that has some solid modding support and good documentation, pick something you want to do, and do it. Keep in mind however that a lot of things are hardcoded and are not designed/supposed to be changed by modders, which is why you always see problems with mods being blamed on "engine limitations". With the focus on consoles this time around I would be surprised to see uber-powerful mod tools for Skyrim, but then again I don't have it yet so I haven't really been looking into it.