Exploring Fan Ages

General debates and discussion about the Guild of Writers and Age creation

Exploring Fan Ages

Postby Justintime9 » Mon Sep 03, 2018 3:38 pm

Greetings all,

I'm trying to get back into age creation / exploring fan ages, but my old Uru installation with the necessary stuff set up is on one of my old laptops. I have a GOG version of Complete Chronicles on my current computer. What is the accepted method of exploring / testing fan ages? I know Korman is a thing, not sure how that works exactly. Is the Offline KI and Drizzle still used?
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Re: Exploring Fan Ages

Postby Deledrius » Mon Sep 03, 2018 5:11 pm

Welcome back!

For exploring Fan Ages, using the Deep Island server is probably your best bet currently for online exploration as it has the full selection of public Ages. You can also use Sirius' update of Drizzle if you want to play offline instead.

For Age building, you can get started quickly now with Korman! Ages you create with Korman can be tested either offline in your local game installation (Uru:CC or MOULa) or online using something like Mystler's Destiny server.
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Re: Exploring Fan Ages

Postby Justintime9 » Thu Sep 06, 2018 1:55 pm

Awesome. I set it up for offline use. I'm trying to get the full-screen edit to work. I changed it in Drizzle to 1920 x 1080, but it stayed the same, but there's still black bars on the left and right sides and the graphics are stretched. It mentioned something about the resolution so I checked out this thread: viewtopic.php?f=10&t=5607&p=57242&#, but I don't quite understand Sirius's instructions. Do I NEED DI files in order to manually change the resolution?
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Re: Exploring Fan Ages

Postby Sirius » Thu Sep 06, 2018 2:48 pm

Yeah, this tutorial is quite outdated. Luckily PlasmaShop can now do the required modification, so it's much easier. I updated the instructions in the other thread, here is a copy:

Graphic settings are all stored in the "dev_mode.dat" file, in Uru's directory. You'll need PlasmaShop to open this file. So the first step is getting PlasmaShop if you don't have it already:
https://github.com/H-uru/libhsplasma/wiki
You'll want PlasmaShop 3 beta ("Setup-PS30-Beta-rXXX.exe"). Install the program, make sure you remember where it is installed in case it does not create a shortcut directly.

Open PlasmaShop.exe, click the "Open File" button, and select the dev_mode.dat file in your Uru install folder. You'll see all sorts of infos displayed. What you'll want is change the width and height in the "Device Mode" area to whichever resolution you want. Save the file.

Before you start Uru, you'll want to make the file "read-only": right-click on the file, go into "Properties" and check "read-only". Otherwise UruSetup.exe (the program allowing you to change your settings) will think the file is invalid and revert your changes. Setting it to read-only prevents ALL application from modifying the file.
Note that UruSetup will complain about resolution being invalid and failing to write graphic settings. You can safely ignore those messages.


Hopefully that should be much easier ! ;)
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Re: Exploring Fan Ages

Postby Justintime9 » Thu Sep 06, 2018 3:47 pm

Awesome! That worked. Is there a way to fix the stretching, or is that just an unavoidable side effect? What's weird is the avatar starts out stretched, but if I go into first person and back into third he's not. But next camera region I enter I'm stretched again.
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Re: Exploring Fan Ages

Postby Sirius » Fri Sep 07, 2018 8:00 am

Most of the time, Uru should keep the 16:9 ratio. Unfortunately, the exception is during animations of the camera between two camregions - that's the only case where Uru will revert to a stretched 4:3 ratio.
Toggling between first and third person resets the ratio back to 16:9, so if you're playing in third person you'll have to do this every once in a while. It's a bit less annoying in first person.

I know improving the widescreen hack is possible, but that's still beyond my current skills, unfortunately... Tutorials about reverse engineering are unfortunately almost non-existant :(
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Re: Exploring Fan Ages

Postby Deledrius » Fri Sep 07, 2018 8:40 am

Something to keep in mind when considering the player experience for the Ages you're working on, and just as a point of interest, AFAIK this is a problem which is entirely fixed in Gehn (and its siblings).

Sirius wrote:I know improving the widescreen hack is possible, but that's still beyond my current skills, unfortunately... Tutorials about reverse engineering are unfortunately almost non-existant :(

For some reason, this kind of technical stuff doesn't get a lot of talk, and people like to keep it to themselves. Also, I think a lot of it comes down to pattern recognition and intuition, which is hard to document. The most effective tools aren't cheap, either.
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Re: Exploring Fan Ages

Postby Sirius » Sat Sep 08, 2018 5:34 am

True. And lots of people view it as only piracy and not something you can use to fix or build things. Some game communities like the Elder Scrolls ones really do some impressive hacking to fix bugs or enhance graphics.

Well, reverse engineering might still elude me, but at least I have fun every one in a while with basic DLL injection and pointer arithmetic :twisted: although most of the time I just mess things up :lol:
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Re: Exploring Fan Ages

Postby Justintime9 » Sat Sep 08, 2018 12:18 pm

Ah, fair enough. Now I need to make a decision about age creation: do I use PyPRP or Korman? I imagine there's not many tutorials on Korman yet, so maybe I should stick to PyPRP. Though I can't find a tutorial for how to install it. Don't I have to download Python and put it in the root directory or something like that?
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Re: Exploring Fan Ages

Postby Sirius » Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:11 pm

PyPRP's tutorial list is here, but you should definitively go with Korman IMHO. PyPRP is a monster of the past. A few things like footprints might be missing from Korman (for now), but the simplicity and stability of Korman + Blender 2.79 is really enjoyable. Goodbye AlcScript.
Korman has a few tutorials already. Should be enough to build standard Ages, I guess. And since it's currently being developed it's very easy to ask here for help or request new features. The devs enjoy having feedback too.
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