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View Full Version : Same Named files in mods ?


Quanon
08-24-2006, 08:53 AM
Hey I've downloade some mods that I wanted to try out , but alot off them are using the same name for certain files . But I saw some screenshots who uses severall mods . So can I go around this problem , I've heard of merging or something like that ? So if there is a solution then please try to explain , and if this ask modding then just say so , I'll try to mod things on my own ( just direct me to the right tutorials and all :) )

Thanks for the help^

stoffe
08-24-2006, 09:11 AM
Hey I've downloade some mods that I wanted to try out , but alot off them are using the same name for certain files . But I saw some screenshots who uses severall mods . So can I go around this problem , I've heard of merging or something like that ? So if there is a solution then please try to explain , and if this ask modding then just say so , I'll try to mod things on my own ( just direct me to the right tutorials and all :) )


If several mods modify the same standard game files you can in most cases merge the changes into the same file (unless both mods modify the exact same data within the file, in which case its more complicated to make them compatible). How easy this is depends on the types of mods. Some mods only require some copy&paste work, while others require a bit more understanding about how things are connected behind the scenes.

How you go about doing this depends on what type the files are. Some common file types are:
2DA files are usually fairly easy to merge since they are essentially tables of text data. You can use KotorTool to copy&paste new lines between 2DA files, or to modify values of existing cells. There's also a tool that may automatically merge lines and changes between different 2DA files.

The thing to watch out for is that sometimes cells in 2DA files refer to other lines in the same or different 2DA files by line number. In those cases you must remember to update the values in those respective columns as well. Different 2DA files work in different ways in this regard.

For example lines in appearance.2da refer to lines in heads.2da, and are in turn referred to by lines in portraits.2da. As another example lines in spells.2da may refer to other lines in the same file to set prerequisites, and may need updated forcehostile/forcefriendly group IDs to be unique.

Further, some lines in 2DA files are referred to from files of other types, like GFF format files. In the case of appearance.2da for example, the line numbers of appearance rows may need to be updated to match in UTC files (the "Appearance_type" field).


For GFF format files (UT*, DLG, ARE, GIT etc) you can usually merge changes as well, as long as the same data inside the file isn't modified. These are laid out in a hierarchal tree structure with a number of data files with a name key and corresponding value. As long as mods don't modify the same key you can copy&paste fields between two files. Be aware that certain types (DLG files in particular) may have fields refer to other fields as well, which needs to have their values properly updated. There is no "one answer fits all" for how GFF files can be merged, it depends on the file subtype.

You can use a GFF editor for these files, like k-gff. For DLG files you can use the DLGEditor.


NCS files are game scripts. In order to merge those you'll need the corresponding NSS source code files from both mods. Then you need at least a rudimentary idea of how scripts work, you'll need to check what's different between the two variants, and then merge the changes in a way that preserves the functionality of both mods. After that you'll need to compile the modified NSS source code into a NCS bytecode file that the came can use. Since scripts can vary a lot in structure and function it's hard to give any general advise on what to look out for, since it varies from script to script.


The general theme of the above is that you'll need to know at least the basics of modding the game, what different file types are and how things are connected in order to be able to safely merge mods modifying the same standard game data safely.

(If the modder used a mod installer like KISS or TSLPatcher some of this work may be done automatically for you, depending on the type of mod, but for mods requiring manual installation you'll have to do it by hand.)

Quanon
08-24-2006, 10:00 AM
Well most mods I've got just change the appearance of your PC , so its mostly Appearance , head files and portraits files . I'll check out the tools and all , thanks for info ;)