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Darkkender
04-25-2006, 12:33 PM
Over the last few weeks I have seen a steady influx of new modders coming into the Holowan Labs. Many are wishing to learn to mod. Since many of the tutorials can be a slightly confusing I figured it might be time to accumulate everything I've learned and distribute it as a series of classes. All of these classes will take place over the course of the next few weeks in small courses designed to teach everything involved in a mod. These courses will cover conceptualization followed by making use of the tools that we have available. There will be indepth walkthroughs of each of our tools and what role they play and they will include pictures as well.

I welcome all newbie modders and veterans to come join the program. The courses will cover all of the basics first and later possibly some more advanced techniques. Veteran's are especially welcome as there may be techniques they weren't aware of or even basic techniques that I miss.

The class lineup is as follows: -- For easy reference each class will be linked to from here. For each class with multiple courses they will be linked in the outline for the class.

Modding 101 -- Creating new NPC characters (http://www.lucasforums.com/showpost.php?p=2075238&postcount=2)
Modding 102 -- Creating Items for the game
Modding 103 -- Placeables and you
Modding 104 -- Modules whats involved

After these courses I will look into Advanced Modding topics which have not yet been planned.

Darkkender
04-26-2006, 12:03 PM
Modding KOTOR 1 & 2
101


How To Make a New Character
NPC's, Recruits, Creatures, & Bystander's.

Description:
This course is designed to take you through the entire process of character creation. It will begin with thinking of your character and what type of character it is and what type of role it will play within the scope of the mod. Next we will dive into the process of actually creating the characters ".UTC" file and everything that is involved in crafting the ".UTC" for the game. After that we will be proceeding on down the line with some basic dialogue for our new character learning how to use the DLGEditor and create a ".DLG" just for them. We will finish the course with in game placement and what would be the best way to place your new character into the game.

Outline:
Course #1: Character Concept (http://www.lucasforums.com/showpost.php?p=2075243&postcount=3)
What Type of Character
What Role Does the Character Play
-- NPC
-- Recruit
-- Creature
-- Nameless Bystander
What is The Character's Backstory
-- Does the character have or need one
-- What type of interaction will this play with the main PC.
How is Character Supposed to Appear

Course #2: Creating The Character (http://www.lucasforums.com/showpost.php?p=2075664&postcount=16)
Lets Start with Kotor Tool
-- Lets see a "UTC"
-- There's so much what do I change (http://www.lucasforums.com/showpost.php?p=2075664&postcount=16)
-- My Character's Appearance & the related 2da's (http://www.lucasforums.com/showpost.php?p=2075908&postcount=23)
-- Lets make that character now
My "UTC" in another GFFEditor

Course #3: Starting that Conversation
So what does our new character have to say to your PC
Let's write a script
Next up DLGEditor
-- What does a DLG look like
-- Lets turn our script into that DLG

Course #4: In Game Placement
What methods can we use to get our character in the game
-- Script it in
-- Module Placement
Are there any other ways?

At the end of each of these courses I will give everybody an assignment. If you wish to post your homework ;) you may.

Darkkender
04-26-2006, 12:07 PM
Course #1: Character Concept

The first thing you must ask yourself is what type of character are you planning to make. This is probably the most vital question as it will make the decision for you later on as to what additional things you must do. Are you planning to make some sort of monster who's only purpose will be for the PC too fight it? Is this some sort of NPC your PC will have a lot of interaction with such as a Recruit or the main Villians. Does your character just stand off to the side in a city and basically tell you to "Buzz Off".

Okay so you have your basic concept which should answer the question of your characters Role of either one of the following Recruit, Creature, Bystander, or NPC. I actually define each of these below as there role with your PC are different.

Recruit ---- This type of character is one that will at some point join the players party and will have occasion of being controlled by the player. This character will also always have some sort of dialogue with the player available.

Creature ---- Creatures are either hostile or friendly and 98% of the time fall in the Hostile category. Creatures have no dialogues and serve either as background or to be killed. This also includes your mindless thugs who are spawned only to fight.

Bystander --- Bystanders really are almost like creatures the only difference is they will usually have some sort of single line comment type of conversation.

NPC ---- The NPC is closest to the recruit except they never become partymembers. They serve very versatile roles from simple merchants to people who provide you quests and include your great big boss Villians who make your life a living hell. These characters always have something to say and usually it can be quite a bit.

So now we know what are character is. The next step is to figure out what there story is. This only really applies to those that fit within the Recruit and NPC category above. However it can be nice to sometimes have the player know why they are suddenly fighting some guy in the street. So we need to establish a backstory. If this is going to be a main role character of some sort then it is best too write down your ideas about this character and give yourself some sort of outline. Your outline should contain the name of your character, what there role in society is, some sort of back history such as how did they get where they are now. You should also include there personality traits in this outline. Also the outline should provide an idea of weather or not they like to reveal very much about themselves, who there family was excetera.

Finally what is the appearance of this character. Are they an alien, are they human, are they young, or are they old. Does this character have any real identifying features such as a wicked scar across the face


So here is your first assignment. Come up with a male or female Recruit, include a name and backstory using the guidlines above. The only stipulation on the project is that you can't use your own alias or real name as the name of the Recruit.

DarthMaul v.1/2
04-26-2006, 02:05 PM
Hail lord Darkkender! :maul:

As you know, I am already enrolled! :urpdude:

You also know that I think this is a GREAT idea, and probably a little over-due. I think it's great not just so I can learn to MOD with some guidance, but also for the future of this great site. Hands-on teaching is always the best way for any one to learn any new thing.

'Halowan U' should produce a new generation of MODders with fresh new ideas that can only cause this already great forum to grow. When it comes to MODs, if you are like me, there can never be too many MODs to choose from! Just think: by the time KotOR III is finally released (c'mon LucasArts...), there will be a full compliment of skilled MODders to expand on it even more than K1 and TSL! :dsaber:

THANKS to you darth333, for allowing Darkkender to 'open campus' to us nOOb-ies! :) I am certain this should be a benefit to us all. This is the next logical evolutionary step for this forum - we already have the great "Getting Started with MODding " and all the links to MOD tools and the great tutorials (thanks to darth333, Achilles, ChAiNz, svosh, T7, tk) - however as we all know, some of the tutorials are a little out-dated. While it isn't a real problem, it can be pretty confusing to a nOOb (believe me, I know!)- this training will only serve to make sense of it all.

Most especially, THANKS to you Darkkender! Thanks for having the vision to think this one up - and not just think about it, realize it! :dmaul3:

This is going to be fan-freakin'-tastic! I am already signed up, and I encourage ALL the other nOOb-ies to do the same! I'll be starting my first home work assignment in just a few moments (after I finish finding out if Mac released the DAP Expansion yet!) :dmaul3:

P.S. - Hey all, let's pick a name for our new campus! I already dropped the obvious one, 'Halowan U' - maybe something along the lines of 'Telos Hidden MOD Academy' - that's just a couple off the top of my head - as you guys post on this, give some more name ideas. Maybe once we have 10 or so cool ideas we can make a poll and vote for the name of our new school - just a thought! :maul5:

- DM.005 :mauls:

darthmaster50
04-26-2006, 06:19 PM
Im in sence Darkkender is great at explaining things.

DarthMaul v.1/2
04-26-2006, 06:47 PM
Im in sence Darkkender is great at explaining things.
Hey darthmaster50! :dmaul3:

Glad to see you're on board! I was just going 'door-to-door' (so-to-speak) and letting the masses know about this - now I can cross your name off the list!

I agree with your assesment of Darkkender, he is very good at explaining - also it doesn't hurt that he is a true Master MODder (reference: Halowan Plug-In)! This course should make MODding truly accessable to everybody!

Be seeing you in 'class' dm50! I'll be the Sith lord with the red and black tatoos passing notes to all the ladies! :dmaul3: :dmaul3: :dmaul3:

P.S. So what do you think we should call our new MOD school? I dropped a couple ideas in my post above - any ideas?

- DM.005 :maul5:

Valenica
04-26-2006, 06:55 PM
I think I'd like to learn too. I tried with the other tutorials, but since englisch's not my native tounge and so i'm having a little trouble with grasping the meaning of some things.

Darkkender
04-26-2006, 07:00 PM
P.S. So what do you think we should call our new MOD school? I dropped a couple ideas in my post above - any ideas?

- DM.005 :maul5:

I suppose we could Call it "Boot Camp Maggot", "Now Drop and Give Me Fifty." :tank1: j/k

But seriously it is great that your excited about it however you may want to ease off on the posting this in everybodies threads because the Moderators might get a bit cranky about it. Especially since it's really close to spamming threads. [Gasp] Fyi it's "Holowan" not Halowan.

I do hope that these trainings are as helpful as possible. Look for course #2 sometime this evening.

Darkkender
04-26-2006, 07:24 PM
I think I'd like to learn too. I tried with the other tutorials, but since englisch's not my native tounge and so i'm having a little trouble with grasping the meaning of some things.


After all of the courses are complete I'll see about trying to get them converted to other languages. However since English is the only language I know It will be really difficult for me too translate because once it's converted I'll have no idea if all the information is translated properly. But I'll be glad to work one on one with anybody who doesn't speak english natively after all is done as well.

Reclaimer
04-26-2006, 07:28 PM
This a great idea, but I though D333 said no...

Oh well, great job so far!

Darth InSidious
04-26-2006, 07:57 PM
I suppose we could Call it "Boot Camp Maggot", "Now Drop and Give Me Fifty." :tank1: j/k

<snip>

I do hope that these trainings are as helpful as possible. Look for course #2 sometime this evening.

This is a great idea, Darkkender, and I look forward to seeing what you produce :D

On the name, how about the MagnaGuard Production Line?

Jackel
04-26-2006, 11:13 PM
This a great idea, but I though D333 said no...

Oh well, great job so far!
Darth333 shut down the other thread because Darkkender was linking to another forum which is against the forum rules.

REDJOHNNYMIKE
04-27-2006, 01:15 AM
Well, sign me up I guess. I've been a slow learner so far and every little bit helps:D

Does this simply involve following the thread?

So this is actual homework stuff, right?
For the first assignment are actual .utc's and .dlg's required, or just fill-in-the-blanks?

@Maul, This is DK's project, he has exclusive naming rights;)
uhhh...n00benders:lol: J/K

Darkkender
04-27-2006, 01:17 AM
Darth333 shut down the other thread because Darkkender was linking to another forum which is against the forum rules.

Technically it is the same thread. I negotiated with her an edited version of the thread so as not to clutter the forums. She excepted it and re-opened the thread. Much thanks Darth333.

REDJOHNNYMIKE
04-27-2006, 01:21 AM
I forgot to ask, should work be PMed or posted?

Darkkender
04-27-2006, 01:24 AM
This next stage of Modding 101 is being posted in parts to further wet the whistle. Once all of Course #2 is posted I will then assign Homework.

Redjohnnymike wrote
I forgot to ask, should work be PMed or posted?

Yes RJM there is actually Homework. ;) Infact I highly encourage people to post there work as we go that way we all can see the ideas spawned by these courses.

That being said here is Part #1 of Course #2.

Course #2: Creating The Character

Okay you have your concept now what? Now we begin the process that gets at the root of creating that character. Okay first things first if you don't have any of the tools that we use downloaded and installed do so now before continuing. You will need the following programs downloaded and Installed. Kotor Tool(Latest Version), KGFF, & DLGEditor(This will be used in course #3).

Okay Let's take a look at Kotor Tool. Assuming that you have both K1 & K2 you should see a lay out similiar to this. Image_1 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_15.jpg) For the purposes of this course I will be using resources from K2 if all you have is K1 that is okay just skip my choices and focus on the locations of files and bring up a similiar file for K1. Click on the Kotor 2 tree you will see 4 sub-trees titled BIFs, RIMs, ERFs, & Saves. Click on the BIFs subtree which will give you a whole string of subtrees. You are looking for the one titled templates.bif, find this one and open it. You are now faced with a whole bunch of options many of which start with Blueprint, followed by other information. We want the Blueprint, Character subtree. So everything should look like the following. Image_2 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_16.jpg) Alright now we will scroll down through this long list and locate the file titled P_atton.utc. Go ahead and double click this and you should get a seperate window that pops up that looks like this. Image_3 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_1.jpg)

Okay the first things we are going to edit are the fields titled "First Name" and "Tag". Replace Atton with the first name of your new recruit that we conceptualized in course #1. So in my case since i am building a Darth Vader Recruit mod I will replace Atton on those 2 lines with Vader. Like so Image_4 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_17.jpg) You can also choose to place the full name of your character in the First Name field if you like. The next field you want to change is at the bottom labelled conversation. You will find atton listed there as well go ahead and change this to the same thing as your "tag" and "First name" fields in my case it will be vader. Like this Image_5 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_18.jpg) As you can see all of this has been relatively easy and painless. So on to the next step. Click on the advanced tab at the top and your window should now look like this. Image_6 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_4.jpg) The only field we want to change right now is the one titled Template Resref. You will see an entry named p_atton. Go ahead and change this to a new uniquie entry for your character. I would recomend continuing to use the "p_" at the beginning and keep the name simple and no more than 16 characters. So in my case it will be "p_vader", Like so. Image_7 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_19.jpg) At this stage were only going to do about one more thing to our new recruit before we save our work and close him temporarily. Locate the tab at the top titled classes and your window should look like this. Image_8 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_7.jpg) We are coing to change the class to one that matches that of our new character. For some of you the listed scoundrel class may already apply in which case just leave the class alone. However for Darth Vader I'm going to change his class and adjust his Good/Evil scale to be more Darkside. Image_9 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_20.jpg). Alright go ahead and save your new "UTC" file. We want to make sure the name of it matches the entry in our template resref field with the .utc extension at the end. So in my case when saving it should be "p_vader.utc", like so. Image_10 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_21.jpg)

Mitchio
04-27-2006, 04:57 AM
The Stickeys are very most confunding.

I was sent here via DarthMaul v.1/2 and would like to learn more, enroll me please!

DarthMaul v.1/2
04-27-2006, 07:16 AM
I suppose we could Call it "Boot Camp Maggot", "Now Drop and Give Me Fifty." :tank1: j/k

But seriously it is great that your excited about it however you may want to ease off on the posting this in everybodies threads because the Moderators might get a bit cranky about it. Especially since it's really close to spamming threads. [Gasp] Fyi it's "Holowan" not Halowan.

I do hope that these trainings are as helpful as possible. Look for course #2 sometime this evening.

What's up, DK?


HA! Say, that whole "drop and give me fifty/maggot" thing - HA! Only thing is, I don't drop and give fifty anythings these days -

But seriously , it is great that I'm excited about it - however I don't think you need to waste your time worrying about me and the modERATORS (they do a good enough job of that as it is! :rolleyes: ) - besides, what I posted in the other members' threads can NOT be qualified as "SPAMming" (where's Jackel with the 'rule book' when I need him? :lol: ) - did you read my posts and the respective threads that they were directed to thoroughly ? All I did was try to help out the new folks the same way I myself would want to be helped - by giving as many different solutions to their individual problems/questions as I was capable of giving - I never strayed off-topic or 'SPAMmed' anything

I think even a lawyer as knowledgeable as darth333 would have that case thrown out in a court of 'SPAM' :laughing:& DarthMaul v.1/2 braces for impact; - easy darth333, I'm just trying to make my point - don't hurt me!

Hey, I am a nOOb, but I understand the rules here well enough. When darth333 stepped all over your original post I was smart enough not to "SPAM" anything - I simply dropped you a PM and told you what a great idea this was, and how I would try to support it - remember ? :)

Besides, I have not seen any complaints from those I posted my replies to. All I have seen is a couple "Thank you's" from these folks, and increased interest by some of them in learning how to MOD - isn't that the point? I was under the impression that this is exactly why this forum exists - "to answer MODding questions and give instruction to those that want to learn about MODding" - now that is a para-phrase , but I am certain I have seen that very message from darth333 to you, right? :dmaul3:

Anywho, I suppose I will refrain from gettin' all up in your way like that - just trying to help...I know, that's where I went wrong, huh? :evil5:

Should I still submit my 'home work' , or will that only cause more problems? :laughing: LOL -jk! (or am I?)

Oh, and my humblest apologies to the site for spelling HOLOWAN wrong! I am off to edit every single one of those posts - FYI , it is a result of me spending around 3 hours of my time typing exceedingly fast (for me!), like I said ... That's where I went wrong...trying to help! :laughing:

- DM.005

DM, posting like you did in everyone elses question threads at that time (3 of them by my count) was indeed a form of spamming, while I and the other Mods appreciate your zeal, you don't need to post advertisements like that all over, people definately can see the threads on the first page. ;)

Posting like you did once to point someone in the right direction is ok and we encourage this, but to post the same or similar post more than once in multiple threads is where the spamming issue comes into play.

You could have posted in one thread then PM'd the other 2 thread creators with your similar suggestion. My Mod colleagues may see this differently but this is my take on it, and what I would do in a similar circumstance. Just an FYI. -RH

stoffe
04-27-2006, 07:17 AM
Go ahead and change this to a new uniquie entry for your character. I would recomend continuing to use the "p_" at the beginning and keep the name simple and no more than 16 characters. So in my case it will be "p_vader", Like so.

If I may, wouldn't it be better to encourage people from the very beginning to start using a (hopefully) unique personal suffix or prefix on all the ResRefs and filenames they create to reduce the potential of naming conflicts with other modders' work? It also makes it easier to keep track of which files are yours and which are made by others.

If you start early you learn to do it automatically without thinking about it. For example I prefix the resrefs/file names of all new files I create with an st_ prefix, like "st_vader.utc". So please don't use that. :p

I prefer to leave the default namespaces to the Bioware/Obsidian developers, but that's just my personal opinion. :)

Darkkender
04-27-2006, 03:04 PM
If I may, wouldn't it be better to encourage people from the very beginning to start using a (hopefully) unique personal suffix or prefix on all the ResRefs and filenames they create to reduce the potential of naming conflicts with other modder's work? It also makes it easier to keep track of which files are yours and which are made by others.

If you start early you learn to do it automatically without thinking about it. For example I prefix the resrefs/file names of all new files I create with an st_ prefix, like "st_vader.utc". So please don't use that. :p

I prefer to leave the default namespaces to the Bioware/Obsidian developers, but that's just my personal opinion. :)

This was actually something I thought about holding as an advanced modding course. More specifically Naming conventions and what are good and bad methods. When it comes to a recruit mod frequently you will find yourself creating more than one UTC depending on the mod. I find I use the default prefixs for much the same reason Bioware/Obsidian do when it comes to a partymember who is part of the party. But after reading your post I think I will throw the Naming Conventions course in following the UTC course.

DarthMaul v.1/2
04-27-2006, 04:09 PM
Hey there, Darkkender!

I am unclear as to where and when we should post our MOD Home work. Do we post our progress here, or is there going to be a different thread for that?

Also, should I post my first assignment (completed), or are we to finish course 2 and then post?

I was under the impression that we post everything here, but I just want to make sure before I post in the wrong place. :dsaber:

Thanks DK! :)

- DM.005 :mauls:

Darkkender
04-27-2006, 05:54 PM
Posting it here would be recomended. Now I leave it up to you if you want to wait untill everything is complete or post as I hand out each assignment. Truth be told you don't have to post any of it but helps if you start to have difficulties following along. That or if you want some feedback on how to improve your work it's a way of enabling others the chance to provide you that feedback.

Darkkender
04-27-2006, 06:49 PM
Part #2

Course #2: Creating The Character

Alright onto our 2DA fishes. Earlier in course #1 I stated that you should think of an appearance for your recruit. There may be many of you who had an idea that would fit with one of the appearances already in one of the KOTOR games. Maybe you thought your recruit would look something like the TSL caucasian male PC head with the scar across the one eye which would be "Player Male Caucasian #1". If you open Appearance.2da you will find the entries for this appearance are lines 166, 167, & 168 as seen here. Image_1 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_22.jpg) If you open Heads.2da you will find the entry for this head on line 51, as seen here. Image_2 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_23.jpg) Finally if you open Portraits.2da you will find the portrait for this character choice on line 23, as seen here. Image_3 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_24.jpg) Where is this all leading you might be asking right about now? To that I just say hang in there. Alright if you take a look at Atton's entries in the 3 above 2DA files you will find that there are very few differences between the layout with the exception that in Appearance.2da Atton only has one line entry. Here they are to make it easy. Image_4 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_11.jpg) Image_5 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_12.jpg) Image_6 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_13.jpg) Some of you may be wondering why that is. This is because the player has a choice between 3 body types that correspond with there class at character creation. However your NPC's only have one body type ever.

Alright so we have located our appearance in the 2da files that we feel would correspond to our new recruit. So this is where there are some diverging schools of thought. There is the quick and easy route to creating that recruit and that is by going back to our utc and scrolling through those drop down menus for appearance and portrait untill we find matching entries to the 2da files of the same name. BAD Idea! Here is why, say you want your player to also be the very same appearance. When you come to your recruit he will be headless. The reason is no NPC can have a head that shares the same Heads.2da reference as the PC's head. So how do we avoid this we create unique entries for our new NPC.

To create a Unique entry is rather easy. First we go too appearance.2da and copy one of the 3 line entries for the The Caucasian male PC #1. To do so click on the grey box to the left of our row entry. For this example I will be copying line 167, as seen here. Image_7 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_25.jpg) Now to paste the line we will have to do some fancy footwork. The reason is there seems to be a glitch in the latest release of Kotor Tool at the time of this course. Usually you should be able to scroll all the way down and click on the last row the one with a */Asterick and then right click and paste. However it seems that of late that feature has been disabled. So to get around that I will show you all a little trick. First click on the last row with any data in it, in a stock TSL appearance.2da file that would be row number 670. If you right click you will get a few different options one of which is to insert copied row. It should look like this. Image_8 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_26.jpg) Go ahead and insert your copied row. You will find your copied row is one row above the last row in appearance.2da. To fix this we simply copy the last row click on the row right above it which is the one we originally copied and inserted and then insert the copy of the last row. Now we can go back down to the last row highlight it and push our "Delete" key removing our extra row 670. I told you there would be some fancy footwork.

Alright we have our new entry in appearance.2da now we just need to copy line 51 from heads.2da to the bottom and line 23 from portraits.2da down to the bottom of that 2da file. remember we will have to play the copy the rows fancy footwork dance in each of these 2da's. Our end result for the 3 2da files should look like these. Image_9 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_27.jpg) Image_10 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_28.jpg) Image_11 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_29.jpg) The next steps are probably easier than the copying of the rows. We start by renumbering the rows that we copied in each of the 2da files. So our new row number in appearance.2da should be 671, in heads.2da it should be 192, and in portraits.2da it should be 63. That done now we go on to the next set of entries to change in each specific 2da file. For portraits.2da we will be changing the following columns Appearancenumber, Appearance_s, Appearance_l, & forpc. In Appearancenumber change this number to 671 to match our new appearance.2da entry. In Appearance_s & Appearance_l change these to 4 astericks(****). For the the final column forpc change this to "0". I would also recomend later changing the names of the photo entries to new names and creating your own photo's to match but that is for a later date and that topic will require at least a course to itself. We need not make any changes beyond the row number to heads.2da so we move onto appearance.2da. In appearance.2da we will need to scroll to the right until we come too the column labeled "normalhead" we want to change the 51 in it's entry to 192 so that it corresponds with our new heads.2da entry. Then change the column right next to it "backuphead" from 53 to 4 astericks (****). I would also suggest at least changing the label of this line to something more fitting for our new NPC. In my case I will be changing the Label to "Party_NPC_Darth_Vader". Here is how the portraits.2da and appearance.2da should look. Image_12 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_30.jpg) Image_13 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_31.jpg) Image_14 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_32.jpg)

For the basic purposes of this course this is all of the 2da editing that will be required. Later when we approach advanced modding I will cover areas of appearance editing for the 2da files. Also much of this subject matter will also be aproached in Item Modding. Next we will be returning to our UTC with our fresh new appearance and portrait entries.

darthmaster50
04-27-2006, 09:45 PM
I have K1 and I am making a NPC that is based off of the spaceman model. I want the color of his suit to change as he gets towards dark/light side. http://img68.imageshack.us/img68/4689/spacemanmdl3tz.png

BlazeHoliday
04-27-2006, 11:22 PM
sweat stuff! i'm working on it now! keep it coming!

darthmaster50
04-28-2006, 12:04 AM
Sorry if mods think this is spam but I know how to make custom chars for pc. The model I might be able to edit it but i probably need a different gif edtor than kotors and need to make new models.

DarthMaul v.1/2
04-28-2006, 12:47 AM
What's up everyone? :evil5:

I just wanted to breeze thru and say "Happy MODding!" to all my nOOb MODder class mates! :dmaul3: I hope all is well so far - nothing too complex yet, right?

Also, I just wanted to HOLLA! at our "Professor of MOD", Darkkender - and reiterate my gratitude for setting this curriculum up for us :newbie:

I am sure that I speak for the rest of the 'class' when I say THANKS for providing us with this! Everything is looking good - please keep up the good work...er, I mean instruction! :lsduel:

Anyways, I have to inhale my dinner and get back to my 'home work', I still have a couple of changes to finish making to my recruit (also, there is a new 'My name is Earl' episode on in a few! :laughing: )

- DM.005 :mauls:

REDJOHNNYMIKE
04-28-2006, 02:20 AM
I've been a little busy and haven't started yet, but is it okay to host links to actual files instead of screens?

Maybe all work could be compiled into a final project that way;)

Darkkender
04-28-2006, 03:04 AM
That would be fine RJM.

Darthmaster50 I would actually recomend posting the question above in the main forums. This is mostly due to the more technical nature of the question.

BlazeHoliday
04-28-2006, 06:12 PM
darkkender, can u post a schedule for your future installments! i'm dying to see the rest of the process!

Darkkender
04-28-2006, 07:14 PM
darkkender, can u post a schedule for your future installments! i'm dying to see the rest of the process!

I'm hoping to post the 3rd part of course #2 this evening. Alot of this depends on my machine time. Most of my daytime posts are while I'm at work so it makes my tutorial writing schedule about as tight as my mod making schedule. I also was thinking that I would be able to break course #2 into 3 parts but I'm realizing that either I'm going to have to have an advanced UTC editing course with 3 parts to itself or 6 total parts for this segment. Because of all the GFF files the "UTC" covers the most indepth amounts of material.

Jae Onasi
04-29-2006, 07:12 PM
^
I don't mind smaller 'classes' (but more of them). It makes it easier to absorb each concept properly.

Mr Maniac
04-29-2006, 10:20 PM
Do you have any idea what the "Minion" class is?

Darkkender
04-30-2006, 03:07 AM
Do you have any idea what the "Minion" class is?

The minion class is basically the soldier with some slight differences. It is used for almost all of your monsters and many of your generic NPC's

Darkkender
04-30-2006, 03:21 AM
Part #3

Course #2: Creating The Character

Okay we have our edited 2da files and we have a utc file that isn't quite finished. So where do we go from here? The next steps have a couple of solutions, I'm going to give you both of them. First solution we throw our 3 new 2da files into our overide folder and make certain that Kotor Tool is supposed to check overide folder first. If your not certain if you have Kotor Tool setup that way then I'll show you how real quick. From Kotor Tool choose the "Tools" menu and go all the way down to options. Image_1 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_33.jpg) Choose options and click on the tab titled other. Image_2 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_34.jpg) You will see a checkbox labeled "Look in Games Overide for 2da files" make certain it is checked and click "OK". That done we can open our UTC file that we created earlier and edit it in Kotor Tool. So go to the "File" menu at the top and choose Open GFF files. Now Kotor Tool should recall where you last saved your UTC file but just in case it doesn't I hope you do. Locate and open your new Recruits UTC file. With our new UTC file already opened go to the appearance drop down menu and scroll all the way to the bottom. You should find your new appearance.2da entry listed there. Image_3 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_35.jpg) Now go to Portraits and do the same thing with that drop down menu and go to the last entry. Once again at this stage I will recomend saving. However this time lets change our file saving convention. Let us add a "x_" to the beginning instead of "p_" that way we can compare some information in the next set of steps.

Alright I told you at the beginning we would need KGFF installed for this course. Okay at this stage open up 2 sessions of KGFF, in the first session open our first UTC file without the changed appearance & portrait entries. In the second session open up the one we made with appearance & portrait changes. Right off the bat you will see our appearance type changes on the first line. However when you scroll down to portraitID you will find that our portrait change didn't happen. Here is a snapshot of x_vader & P_vader for comparison. Image_4 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_36.jpg) Image_5 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_37.jpg) This is because Kotor Tool has a glitch when it comes to saving the custom portraitID's at the time of this tutorial. So while I told you there was 2 methods for setting your 2da changes in your UTC file I actually half told the truth. That is we can change the appearance without any problems but the photo we will have to change manually in a GFF editor. So lets go ahead and manually change the portraitID to 63 for our UTC file. To do so all you need to do is click and highlight the field and the editable data will appear to the righthand side. Simply click on the field with the incorrect photoID in it and type 63 for our new Portrait. Save our UTC and thats that. You want to know the best part now when we open our UTC in Kotor Tool the portrait will actually be pointing to our new portrait like it's supposed too. That and Kotor Tool doesn't foul it up incase you are afraid this might happen.

Now we have explored much into the factors of the basics into changing the appearance of our new character however there is much more still left undone. For the majority if not all of the rest of the lesson I will be trying to keep you in Kotor Tool's UTC editor. Simply because it is better for a beginning modder to navigate and understand. However always be prepared for the need to switch out for a pure gff editor for various tasks.

Were going to take a look at some other portions of the UTC. Remember when we changed our class to Jedi Guardian but did nothing else? Well now we're going to go back and play with some different aspects of our character. First thing we want to look at is the Statistics tab for our UTC, Image_6 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_38.jpg) once there you will find saving throws, ability scores and hit points. Of the 3 I just mentioned only one set of them is not tied into your characters class, that is ability scores. Since it actually would be ideal to create any character or creature using the rules system properly I'm going to show you how. Ability scores are very much the most flexible thing to work with as your the one who really determines them. However I would recomend against over powering your character/creatures ability scores unless it is really necessary, such as that 5 tom Rancor really should have a strength 30. I would recomend for most characters no more than 2 ability scores of 18 and try to have the majority in the 10-14 range. Now to figure out what your ability score adjustment for your creature is simply take the ability score and subtract 11 if the ability score is odd or 10 if the ability score is even. Then take the remainder and divide in half this will be your ability score modifier.

For the purposes of this tutorial I'm going to leave the Atton's default ability scores alone. Now when we were looking at the classes.2da above you will have seen a column labelled hitdie. For the Jedi Guardian the number in that field is 10. So to determine what our creatures hit points should be we take that number and multiply by 0.75 or 3/4. We then take the results in this case 7.5 and multiply by the class level in my case 3 and I would get 22.5 we will then round this down to 22 and this will be my base hit points. Some of you might be wondering where I come up with multiplying the hit die by 3/4. Well this is also a quick gamers trick because over the course of multiple levels the average gamer will roll hit points out to about 3/4 of the maximum potential. Now all I need to do is take my Con modifier times my level and add this to my result above. So in my case Con modifier +2 * 3 = 6 + 22(Average HP) = 28. This will be my base hit points. For Max hitpoints I take my Hit Die + Con modifier * my level and in this case my result would be 36. So I enter in 28 For Base hitpoints and Current Hit points and 36 for max hit points. So my new UTC's statistics should now look like this.

After reviewing Information about saving throws brought to my attention by Stoffe I have removed the above Saving throw information.

Okay that's enough to take in in this part so I'll let your brain rest and we'll tackle Skills, Feats, & Powers in the next part.

BlazeHoliday
04-30-2006, 08:26 AM
shoudl i just save the 2da's or should i use the xml format?

stoffe
04-30-2006, 08:50 AM
Image_7 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_39.jpg) As you look across you will see a column labelled savingthrowtable. The entry below that will be the name of the 2da file for your classes saving throws. So since I'm going to be making my recruit a Jedi Guardian my saving throw table will be the following. Image_8 (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v478/darkkender/UTC_101_pic_40.jpg) Since I plan to leave my recruit as 3rd level to begin with I will locate the row for Level 3 and I will see that my Fort save is +3, my Ref save is +3 and my Will save is +2. So lets go ahead and put those numbers in the proper saving throw fields in our UTC file (snip)


The Saving Throw boxes in the UTC editor are for bonus saving throw values on top of those granted by their class levels and ability scores. Characters automatically get the saving throws assigned for their class from the above mentioned 2DA table when they level up. Thus, doing as you described above the character will end up with 3/3/2 saving throw values from their class, bonuses from the ability score ranks, plus an extra 5/6/2 as a bonus from what you entered in the UTC.

Mr Maniac
04-30-2006, 12:01 PM
One quick question. Say you set your character's appearance to that of a creature (specifically a Tach). Do you still have to do all of the appearance.2da, and heads.2da editing?

Darkkender
04-30-2006, 02:27 PM
The Saving Throw boxes in the UTC editor are for bonus saving throw values on top of those granted by their class levels and ability scores. Characters automatically get the saving throws assigned for their class from the above mentioned 2DA table when they level up. Thus, doing as you described above the character will end up with 3/3/2 saving throw values from their class, bonuses from the ability score ranks, plus an extra 5/6/2 as a bonus from what you entered in the UTC.

I had not run into that being the case in the past. However I will double check this and make corrections if that is the case. I have found in the past that NPC recruits almost always end up levelling up after joining and afterwards there stats are correct for there level even after I fill in data in these fields.

One quick question. Say you set your character's appearance to that of a creature (specifically a Tach). Do you still have to do all of the appearance.2da, and heads.2da editing?

The heads.2da editing is only used for a recruit who has a head model. However I would still recomend creating a Unique appearance.2da entry. You will also need a portraits.2da entry. In part #2 of Course #2 I mentioned that there was diverging schools of thought. The quick and easy direct reference to existing entries. While I only covered the topic of Human appearances for your recruit the principal is similar. Even though there won't be any real conflicts it is always better to have a unique entry for any creature that gets recruited or whose role is more than just as a one shot wonder. That way later if you want to give your special creature it's own unique texture like darkenning the skin and giving sith eyes to it it won't effect all creatures of the same type.

DarthMaul v.1/2
05-01-2006, 01:32 AM
Hey there, Darkkender! :dmaul3:

So far so good with the assignments DK! WOW - you are really doing a nice job of breakin the courses down into easy, bite-sized pieces! :) Say, you some sort of instructor or teacher in the "real world"?

Quick question DK - I am just mimicing what you have done as an example to us so far (I'm just using PMC01 as my 'recruit' model) - while this is fine for me to learn with, I was actually hoping to MODify the 'commoner - male - FAT' NPC as my recruit - however I noticed that there are no 'value' numbers for this appearance for 'normal head' or portraits.2da - these 'values' are listed as '****' in both .2da's.

What I wanted to know is can I use this appearance for my 'recruit', and if so can I just give the appearance a differenthead and a different portrait- so as to continue the 'course' learning process?

If you think this is too difficult for me right now - or just not possible - I'll just stick to the 'recruit' I have already started! :)

Thanks in advance for the 411, DK (and everyone else)!

- DM.005 :maul5:

stoffe
05-01-2006, 01:01 PM
I had not run into that being the case in the past. However I will double check this and make corrections if that is the case. I have found in the past that NPC recruits almost always end up levelling up after joining and afterwards there stats are correct for there level even after I fill in data in these fields.


It has been this way since Neverwinter Nights, the fields in the UTC are for allowing additional saving throw bonuses, usually used to make bosses tougher. Saving throws from classes and abilities are calculated and added automatically. But if you won't believe me it's fairly easy to test, so I just tested it myself. :)

Here are screenshots of 3 variants of the same character template:
Level 3 Jedi Guardian, flat 10 in all ability scores, no saving throw bonuses. (http://img437.imageshack.us/img437/3043/testguy14qx.jpg)
Level 3 Jedi Guardian, flat 10 in all ability scores, Fort3/Refl3/Will2 saving throw bonuses. (http://img437.imageshack.us/img437/9687/testguy21ou.jpg)
Level 3 Jedi Guardian, your ability score bonuses, Fort3/Refl3/Will2 saving throw bonuses. (http://img409.imageshack.us/img409/3746/testguy31vv.jpg)


Results: This image (http://img437.imageshack.us/img437/1985/savingthrows2mb.jpg) shows which saving throws they ended up with in-game, respectively.

Darkkender
05-01-2006, 01:02 PM
Sorry for not getting back sooner on this. I looked into what Stoffe mentioned above and discovered she was correct. I had looked into last night and with your screenshots above they go to further cement my not being very attentive. :( Sorry for doubting you Stoffe. I'll correct the tutorial to properly reflect the correct information.

@DM.005 -- If you could list which appearance.2da entry you are thinking of I could take a look and see if I can over any insight. However if what you say is true there is no entry in the heads column for the appearance then the appearance is likely to be a full body & head mesh. Now this does not preclude you from using that appearance for your recruit provided you like the head.

As to the teacher thing. Well I have frequently been a Supervisor Lead at many of my jobs. That or some of my jobs I have been responsible for training employee's on different projects. I've even thought about when I go back to school to change my degree to a teaching degree.

But here is what might blow your mind. My own spirtual beliefs include those of my Native American ancestory. At least in the respects of having spirit guides to further lead me down the right path in life. This is more akin to star sign, zodiac signs than a religion to itself. Anyways one of these guides is "Wolf" who is the teacher. As with a sign of the Zodiac a spirit guides teachings are more representative of one personality and nature. Which in turn leads to my own tendancy to pass on knowledge.

But I've really digressed when talking of my self there.

DarthMaul v.1/2
05-01-2006, 02:37 PM
@DM.005 -- If you could list which appearance.2da entry you are thinking of I could take a look and see if I can over any insight. However if what you say is true there is no entry in the heads column for the appearance then the appearance is likely to be a full body & head mesh. Now this does not preclude you from using that appearance for your recruit provided you like the head.
What's up, DK? :)

The appearance I was talking about in my other post was the ' commoner_male_fat' appearance listed in TSL with the other 'commoner' appearances - it only has **** for it's 'normalhead' and I believe 'portrait' as well - I don't mind the default head look for this appearance, but it does not have any DS transition - now that DOES bother me, as I enjoy playing as DS 8/10 times! Is it possible to switch this appearance's 'normalhead', 'portrait', and DS transition - I think that the DS transition is 'texaevil' or something like that - and still keep the 'fat' body type? :dmaul3:

I am guessing that the only way to do this is to re-model the appearance in 3dsMax or gmax (I'm DEFINITELY not ready to try that---yet!), right?

And as far as the whole 'digressing' about yourself and your Native American heritage - that does not bother me one bit, as I myself have ALOT of Choctaw blood running through my veins! Though I am not nearly full-blood or even half (my father was half - grandmother almost full), I am shamefully lacking knowledge of this part of my heritage - something I need to change! :)

And as far as ms.stoffe goes, as usual her word is as good as gold, huh? :) :)

Anywho, I better knock off the chit-chat before RedHawke or darth333 comes along and clips my --- er, wings! :) Besides, I get to go to the doctor in a little while, WHOOPEE! < VERY painful sarcasm! > :mad2:

Thanks for the character help, DK! Like I said, it is a TSL appearance - commoner_male_fat. :dmaul3:

- DM.005 :maul5:

Darkkender
05-01-2006, 03:06 PM
As far as Darkside appearance's go that is determined by the skin texture of the appearance. This will actually be one of the many topics covered in some of the advanced courses.

darthmaster50
05-01-2006, 11:36 PM
Will there be any modeling help added? If so I would be very happy because I know about all most every file except a few and would like to learn how to model.

Darkkender
05-02-2006, 02:55 PM
Because of my pure inability to model the only course likely would be an advanced course that would be a team effort between myself and one of the master modeller and texturers. I must say my best recomendation on that particular subject would actually be to browse through the hundreds of websites out there devoted to teach modelling from beginner to advanced techniques. Mostly because the sheer amount of working knowledge in the 2 modelling programs that we can use goes far beyond what Holowan Labs is capable of providing at this time.

I'm sure if you PM'ed somebody like oldflash he might be able to point you in the right direction. That is if creating models and graphics are really something you are interested in.

DarthMaul v.1/2
05-04-2006, 05:36 PM
Hail lord Darkkender?!

Yoohoo, any body home?

DK, is everything all right? Seriously, I have not seen you around in a while -

Are you working on the next course? Or, is there a different problem?

Hey, I know every one needs a break now and then, but I am worried about you. I think it is safe to say that it's out of character for you to disappear from the forum for this long! If you just need a break from messin' with 'Holowan U', NO problem! I think we all can understand that - but just pop in and let us know you are OK!

Your pal,

- DM.005 :maul5:

EnderWiggin
05-04-2006, 05:44 PM
The last time he was on the forums was this morning last night, at least where I live.

The last time he posted here was the day before yesterday.
Sometimes RL sucks and he might not have had much free time recently, etc.

Don't worry, he's reliable and will be back.

_EW_

EDIT: You're right DK, I don't have the time zone changed in my preferences, and instead of subtracting hours, I added by accident.

Darkkender
05-04-2006, 05:48 PM
Last night actually EW, unless Your in Australia. Then it might have been your morning.

@DM -- I'm sorry had too much real world getting in the way of my typing the next section. I should have it ready by tonight provided nothing gets in my way. No worries though Holowan U is one of my many priorities for time right now. Just not at the top.

DarthMaul v.1/2
05-04-2006, 10:13 PM
{snip} Spam is bad for your health... let's keep the chatter down, ok?

Re-read the forum rules (http://www.lucasforums.com/showthread.php?t=127725) concerning spam.

This is your second warning (http://www.lucasforums.com/showpost.php?p=2079610&postcount=14).

- d3