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Scenario Builder
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Skyburn
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 12, 2008

PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2012 5:08 pm    Post subject: Scenario Builder Reply with quote

http://files.spaceempires.net/user/2047/SE5_Scenario_Builder.7z

Extract to your SE5 Folder to begin. Complete instructions are in the included readme.


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gurachn
Space Emperor


Joined: Aug 03, 2010
Location: Osaka, Japan

PostPosted: Wed Feb 22, 2012 1:11 pm    Post subject: Re: Scenario Builder Reply with quote

Skyburn wrote:
http://files.spaceempires.net/user/2047/SE5_Scenario_Builder.7z

Extract to your SE5 Folder to begin. Complete instructions are in the included readme.

This looks excellent Skyburn!
Looking forward to give it a shot when I get some free time.
Have you made any scenarios with it yet?

I seems to me that a scenario should really be accompanied by a set of background info on the races, history, current situation, and maybe some maps or ship details.
I wonder if the tutoral help popups that were part of the tutorial scenario could be adapted for this?


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Skyburn
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 12, 2008

PostPosted: Wed Feb 22, 2012 4:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I haven't made any scenarios yet; I've just done playtesting to ensure it works and the instructions are accurate.

I haven't tested it, but I bet you could use the tutorial popups to introduce your scenario. SuicideJunkie did that with one of his SE4 scenarios, the one where the Phong attack. I think he also used them to make a countdown of how many turns until the Phong attacked. Assuming it works ok, do you think instructions and a sample scenario intro should be included with the builder?


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Fyron
Galactic Guru


Joined: Aug 04, 2003
Location: CA, USA

PostPosted: Wed Feb 22, 2012 7:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You could go one step further and add some triggers in the event scripts..

Smarter than your average Texrak.


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gurachn
Space Emperor


Joined: Aug 03, 2010
Location: Osaka, Japan

PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 12:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Skyburn wrote:
Assuming it works ok, do you think instructions and a sample scenario intro should be included with the builder?

I think that 's an excellent idea.
Very Happy

Just had a quick look at the Game setup and a few questions occur:

It seems pretty straightforward to make a map using the genesis editor, and to load it during a game setup, but is it possible to specify exactly which system a particular race will start in?
The 'Starting Positions' button seems to indicate the starting spots will be random.

Also, assuming you can specify a system, is it possible to specify a particular starting homeworld?

There is a scenario in the downloads section that has you starting in the SOL system, so I assume that the above is possible, but it isn't clear how it might be achieved.
Actually since that scenario only has a single starting race, the first issue shouldn't be a problem, but how would this work if you have more than one race to place?


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marhawkman
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 24, 2008

PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 4:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

SE5 doesn't give you existing worlds. It adds starting worlds to the map. At least if you choose "same size" in options.

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gurachn
Space Emperor


Joined: Aug 03, 2010
Location: Osaka, Japan

PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 12:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

marhawkman wrote:
SE5 doesn't give you existing worlds. It adds starting worlds to the map. At least if you choose "same size" in options.

I wonder how the guy who made the 'Earth Scenario' did it then.
that one definitely has you start on Earth in the Sol system.


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marhawkman
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 24, 2008

PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 2:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe if you choose 1 HW and Any? I'm not really sure here.

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Artful_Bodger
Space Emperor


Joined: Aug 23, 2009

PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The original developer would have had access to the unencrypted form of the savegame files, probably has an encrypt/decrypt tool for them.
With this & knowledge of the files structure, scenarios would be a lot easier to set up, by just editing them directly.
They would also mean easier definition and execution of test cases.


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gurachn
Space Emperor


Joined: Aug 03, 2010
Location: Osaka, Japan

PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 3:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Artful_Bodger wrote:
The original developer would have had access to the unencrypted form of the savegame files, probably has an encrypt/decrypt tool for them...

Shocked
That would certainly be a wonderful tool to get ahold of!


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marhawkman
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 24, 2008

PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 4:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

YEah, but good luck there...

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Artful_Bodger
Space Emperor


Joined: Aug 23, 2009

PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 5:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

gurachn wrote:

That would certainly be a wonderful tool to get ahold of!

Vital for the development team, but you don't want that one in the wild.
Multi player games would be compromised as downright cheats could read the current save games (and even edit them). Crying or Very sad

You'd need a 2 stage encrypt process allowing an unplayed game to be set up, yet scrambling it once played.
Stock SEV just ain't in that league. Sad

Could you take over that Earth demo & edit it with the scenario builder tool ?


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gurachn
Space Emperor


Joined: Aug 03, 2010
Location: Osaka, Japan

PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 1:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't believe the original developer had any sort of a decrypt tool to make that Earth scenario. The author's description states, "The map was made using ergie272''s map generator/editor, and a bit of luck."

I'm guessing that he (Keith Sayers) designed the system with all of the planets except earth, then just let the game add in the homeworld.
With a bit of trial and error, you would eventually get a starting planet roughly where you want it, and then could rename it to 'Earth', before saving the game as the scenario start point.

Anybody know Mr. Sayers? It would nice to confirm exactly how this was done, especially if he managed to create his map without the need for the above.


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marhawkman
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 24, 2008

PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 3:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

*does google search for "ergie272"

Results:
I found an old email that he claims is likely no longer active: ergie272@telefonica.net

Other info:
He's joined a large number of mesage boards about various games to ask a question then never come back to the board after the question was answered.

He's apparently a spaniard. But he speaks fluent english.

Suggested contact method:
Ebay: http://feedback.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewFeedback2&userid=ergie272&ftab=FeedbackLeftForOthers
He was last active on Ebay 20 feb 2012, thus it's likely that he'll notice any messages sent to him through ebay.

I'm gonna ask him a question about this tool he is alleged to have made.

EDIT: I found this in the SE5 files:
http://www.spaceempires.net/downloads-details-608-SE5_Map_Creator_v0.4.4.html#dldetails


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gurachn
Space Emperor


Joined: Aug 03, 2010
Location: Osaka, Japan

PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 5:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

marhawkman wrote:
*does google search for "ergie272"...
ergie only made the Map creator tool which Keith Sayers used to create the Earth Map
I doubt he would be able to shed much light on the issue, as his Readme clearly states that the tool can't edit encrypted map/savegame files.

In any case, I'm pretty sure that with a bit of luck (and some trial and error) it wouldn't be too difficult to whip up an earth system like the one in the scenario.

The biggest issue, however, for someone wishing to create StarTrek/StarWars/B5/etc scenario, would seem to be that of placing particular races in particular starting positions.
As far as I can tell, while you can create a custom map and specify the systems that will spawn homeworlds, you can't choose which races start where.
So you could end up with the Klingons starting in the Sol system and the humans way out on Gorn or somewhere.

Anyone know any way around this?


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marhawkman
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 24, 2008

PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 6:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

yeah, but it's almost as awkward. I've discovered that if you manually ad races AND manually add start points the game puts the races in the start point from 1 to whatever in the same order that you created the start points.

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Skyburn
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 12, 2008

PostPosted: Sun Feb 26, 2012 7:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

marhawkman wrote:
SE5 doesn't give you existing worlds. It adds starting worlds to the map. At least if you choose "same size" in options.


That's not quite right. SE5 does usually spawn HWs, but sometimes it gives you an existing planet in your starting system.

This is easily tested with a mod that gives planets lots of innate abilities, like Skymod. Generate new games and you will notice that most HWs don't get any abilities (which is impossible for ordinary planets). Match the number of planets in the system to the number of planets for that system type in SystemTypes.txt and you will see that the number of planets is SystemTypes.txt + 1. When you get a HW with innate abilities, check SystemTypes and you'll see that the number of planets matches exactly.

So if you want your empire to start on a specific planet (Earth), make sure that the planet Earth's size matches the starting planet size. Then just keep generating new games until Earth is your HW. A bit time consuming, but doable.

Artful_Bodger wrote:
Vital for the development team, but you don't want that one [savegame editor] in the wild.
Multi player games would be compromised as downright cheats could read the current save games (and even edit them).


Viewing the savegames would certainly be possible, but only the game host could get away with editing the savegame. If another player tried it the host wouldn't be able to read the player's .plr during turn processing.


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Fyron
Galactic Guru


Joined: Aug 04, 2003
Location: CA, USA

PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2012 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SE5's encryption isn't very complicated... Someone already figured out how to decrypt savegames a few years back on IRC, but he didn't post his code anywhere.

Smarter than your average Texrak.


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marhawkman
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 24, 2008

PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2012 10:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Skyburn wrote:
marhawkman wrote:
SE5 doesn't give you existing worlds. It adds starting worlds to the map. At least if you choose "same size" in options.


That's not quite right. SE5 does usually spawn HWs, but sometimes it gives you an existing planet in your starting system.

This is easily tested with a mod that gives planets lots of innate abilities, like Skymod. Generate new games and you will notice that most HWs don't get any abilities (which is impossible for ordinary planets). Match the number of planets in the system to the number of planets for that system type in SystemTypes.txt and you will see that the number of planets is SystemTypes.txt + 1. When you get a HW with innate abilities, check SystemTypes and you'll see that the number of planets matches exactly.

So if you want your empire to start on a specific planet (Earth), make sure that the planet Earth's size matches the starting planet size. Then just keep generating new games until Earth is your HW. A bit time consuming, but doable.
Or just specify the starting system. :p

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Skyburn
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 12, 2008

PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 9:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

marhawkman wrote:
Or just specify the starting system. :p


That won't guarantee starting at an existing planet. The game may still spawn a new HW. Unless you get lucky, you'll have to restart a few times.[/quote]


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marhawkman
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 24, 2008

PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 10:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hmm... does the map editor let you specify resources and conditions? that might help.

At any rate, ergie was happy to give me all of the data related to the map utility he wrote. PM me if you want me to send you a copy.


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gurachn
Space Emperor


Joined: Aug 03, 2010
Location: Osaka, Japan

PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 11:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Skyburn wrote:
marhawkman wrote:
Or just specify the starting system. :p


That won't guarantee starting at an existing planet. The game may still spawn a new HW. Unless you get lucky, you'll have to restart a few times.

Good to know that it's possible to create specific map layouts, even if the mechanics are a bit clumsy.
With the new scenario builder things are looking good.

I must admit that while I like the random, "discover a new universe in every game" style used in SEV, it would be nice to take over the reigns in a more familiar Trek/SW/Honorvers/B5 situation, with known races and galaxies and ships in (close to)canon locations, and (re)enact famous conflicts. Very Happy

Fyron's mention of using triggers in the event scripts raises some interesting possibilities.
How much can be done with that?
Is it possible to influence AI behavior, i.e. have an AI race declare war on a certain turn?


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ekolis
Virtual Guru


Joined: Aug 04, 2003
Location: Cincinnati, OH, USA

PostPosted: Wed Feb 29, 2012 2:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The AI's themselves are scripts, so yes, it is possible to have an AI declare war on a particular turn.

That's no space station - it's a spreadsheet!


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gurachn
Space Emperor


Joined: Aug 03, 2010
Location: Osaka, Japan

PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2012 9:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

marhawkman wrote:
...I've discovered that if you manually ad races AND manually add start points the game puts the races in the start point from 1 to whatever in the same order that you created the start points.

I don't think this is correct.
I just made a small 5 system galaxy using Genesis.
I designated 4 of the systems as potential starting points within the mapmaker
I then started a new game, loaded the map and set the 4 outer systems (clockwise from the rightmost system) as starting points.
I then loaded 4 preset races, in the an order matching the system assignment.

In 3 out of 4 attempts, they did not appear in the same systems.
1 out of the 4 was a bit off, but did use an existing homeworld, rather than adding a new one.

Marhawk, am I doing something different than the procedure you use?


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marhawkman
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 24, 2008

PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2012 6:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

After looking again... I seem to be mistaken. Sad It looks like you'd have to do it over and over until the spawned in the right places. Sad

Which with a large number of empires would be very time consuming. 4-5 wouldn't be too bad though.


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