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How different is bgee coding from bg2 coding?


Twani

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So I've hit that strange bizarre part of my life where I want to make a mod. And I've decided there needs to be more NPC mods for Baldur's Gate I, because BG1 is still fun. However, it seems everyone is switching over to BGEE, which makes sense. So I decided I should code a mod for BGEE.

 

And now I'm sort of standing around confused staring at nothing.

 

I know, in theory, how to code an NPC. I've managed to make basically one-day NPC's for myself that really do nothing but interject, banter with my favorite characters, and follow the PC around. And Kuylok's Branwen NPC tutorial has taught me basically everything I didn't know/haven't gotten around to, like how to make a friendship path work and the like. So... I think I can do this. (Excluding art and sound, but I'll figure my way around that eventually.)

 

I'm just wondering: how different is coding for BGEE compared to coding for BG2? I'm not looking to do anything complicated through scripting; just a basic NPC with romance/friendship paths. I know the journal and items are a bit different... is that the main thing? I figure I don't really need custom items for a level 2 or 3 NPC, but journal entries might be needed.

 

Maybe I should have asked this on the BGEE boards, but I'm not registered and I usually hang around here anyway, so I figured I'd ask. I hope that's okay.

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I've coded about ten rather bulky mods for BG2, but I NEVER attempted a similar one for BG1(Tutu/BGT/BGEE) and never will, despite my contributions to BG1 NPC and RE for BG1. Crossplatform coding is THAT annoying. I think it's horrible, and I'm not going to lie: you're going to do some extra thankless work, your code will be harder to read, and you'll have to deal with many more bug reports and compatibility problems. Ideally, you'll have to have four installs at hand.

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You're losing a huge part of the audience, if you're not coding for Tutu/BGT though - maybe 70,75 percent for the time being.
Well those can be gained back after you make a solid mod for one of the three.
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Ugh. I must admit, I was hoping for a 'oh, yeah, it's easy' answer. Of course, if it was easy, I assume everyone would have everything updated to work on BGEE already. >.>

 

I'm concerned that, in paticular, when the BG1 NPC project comes out for BGEE, everyone is going to switch from Tutu/Trilogy to it. That seems to be the general feeling I get from the forums. On the other hand, I owe Tutu so much of my time and effort- played it constantly, and incredibly enjoyed it. So I do want to support it if at all possible.

 

(Maybe I should just stick to BG2 modding. But BG1 needs more NPC love...)

 

I think there are two spellhold studios NPCs that are avaliable for BGEE and BGTutu/Trilogy. I'll download them and stare dubiously at their code for a while, and see if I can figure it out. If not... I don't know if I'll go for BGEE or Tutu/Trilogy.

 

Wrote the joining, parting dialogs, two banters, and the start of the friendship path for my NPC. I'm very slow. >.>

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Crossplatform coding is not that difficult if you get the hang of it. Problem is the differences in area codes and some item names. These you define by OUTER_SPRINTS that get evaluated at the beginning of the install process.

 

So one example would be Branwen's joined dialogue file.

In Tutu, it's

OUTER_SPRINT "BRANWEN_JOINED" "_BRANWJ".

In BGT, it's

OUTER_SPRINT "BRANWEN_JOINED" "BRANWJ"

In BG:EE, it's

OUTER_SPRINT "BRANWEN_JOINED" "BRANWJ"

 

In the files, you then use e.g. %BRANWEN_JOINED% in all instances for Branwen's joined dialogue instead of typing it out and WeiDu does the rest.

 

In case you aren't aware of cmorgan's tutorial: Crossing the Great Divide. BG:EE comes in there with ressources that are like the BG1 ones. You get the appropriate tpa (with the OUTER_SPRINT definitions) here from CamDawg's tutorial.

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Alright, I've read the tutorials and I think I get it now. It doesn't look like it's that hard to make everything BGEE/BGT/Tutu compatable; BGEE doesn't really add that much of an extra step, as you'd be doing the same work to make things compatable for both BGT and Tutu.

 

I still don't quite get how custom items and journal entries work, but to be honest, I never really understood how they worked to begin with. Branwen has an example of the different journal entries: I'll take a look at that. As for custom items... well, I don't think my NPC really needs one. He'll be recruitable early enough in the game. I'll save worrying about that for BGII.

 

I guess any more questions I have should go in the Modders Q & A forum rather then in this thread, though. I sort of put in the wrong place. Sorry about that.

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