@Echo -- I love (love) the map changes you made for your MM8 Monstrous Modling. I'm curious as to whether you think it's possible for your map changes to be added to the Merge -- for an individual user, of course, not for the Merge writ large.
I'll have to investigate it further, but I don't gather that Rodril's Merge makes a whole lot of map content changes to MM8. If the files are separated out, and I think they are, I might be able to simply swap in some of Echo's within the Merge. Please disabuse me of the notion as necessary, of course xD
So I just downloaded MMArchive and I'm exploring pulling apart LOD files and putting them back together. I'm going to see if I can take some of the things I really liked from Echo's mod and splice them into what Rodril's merge.
If I understand your Modling correctly, I think I can achieve your hand-placed map changes by extracting the appropriate .blv and .odm files in your games.lod and replacing their counterparts in the Merge's game.lod. I don't think there's really anything else in EnglishT.lod that would affect this. Heh, imagine Merge bolstered monsters with your map placement xD
Edit: Upon further review, there's more to games.lod than blv and odm files. Fortunately, both Echo's and the Merge's games.lod archives have the same files within them. Let's see if I can simply swap archives wholesale.
Edit2: I do see that the Merge has LUA scripts for several of the areas in MM8. No clue if your map placements and changes would affect those scripts. Well, I guess that's what playtesting is for.
If it works out, absolutely send me the files!
I would have no clue how to do it myself.
If you manage to get it to work, please let me know by Private Message, I might not notice it here.
Also, editing maps is a lot of fun, I'd 100% encourage you to do that too so we can have even more new stuff to play with ^^ If I had more time back then, I'd have done it a more meticulous and thought out way, but yeah, at best my changes introduce some chaos into the play
I'm glad to hear you enjoyed them.
lightbringer23 wrote:Continuing my Echo Monstrosity and Merge tests. I just did a fly around of the outdoor maps with my existing lvl48 Jadame party after swapping in Echo's Games.lod files.
HOLY COW I forgot how epic her map repopulations are! Apparently the new Games.lod caused all of the maps to respawn. Incidentally, Merged Boosting kicked in too. I used the default mapstat.txt that comes with the merge, so the base stats of the monsters is as in the merge.
Maps were swarming with all kinds of foes. Dire wolves packs swarming around ratman and dark dwarf camps in Ravenshore, rows of Centaurs lining the canyon walls in Alvar raining down arrows, mercenary camps all over the place guarding valuables, dragons flying around Regna Island. SO much fun!
So, if anyone is interested in doing so, it seems to be very viable to take the games.lod file from Echo's MM8 Monstrosity Modling and swap it wholesale with the Merge's games.lod -- even in an existing save game. I can't guarantee some issue won't arise -- and it's epic hardcore re-balancing -- but I was able to load and fly around all 9 outdoor maps without incident. I'm SO glad I got this to work.
Incidentally, I also feel quite justified in my plans to amp up artifact stats xD
I want those artifacts too once you make them!
Curiously, cause I don't remember - are creatures actually mixed after you ported the maps? As in, are there phoenixes flying around the gogs etc or was that a part of monsters.txt? I remember I really wanted to get some creatures to be more common cause the designs were so cool and they were way too rare
lightbringer23 wrote:Quick followup that I don't have a solution for at the moment:
Echo did some cool retexture work in Ironsand and Shadowspire. I haven't figured out how to add those textures -- simply adding them in to bitmaps.lod or 00 patch bitmaps.lod doesn't work, and replacing bitmaps.lod entirely is a disaster.
@Echo, if you can give me a little guidance about how to apply your retextures from your separated (dismembered) modling, I'd appreciate it.
Monstrosity Modling Merge idea is still completely playable. Echo's maps expect those textures, and in the lack seem to default to the kind of brown cracked earth found in Enroth. It's a little jarring in Shadowspire :O Not pretty, but entirely cosmetic.
I don't quite remember how all the files here operate, but I fear it might be a bit different with the merge. Not sure, haven't yet had the time to get into it :<
Bascially, when it comes to textures, to replace them you also need to add a palette. But absence of the palette should cause some weird grainy barf textures, not a lack of changes, so, sadly, I'm not sure how to work around it in the merge.
I was using MMArchive, simply putting the changed textures in there (as I recall it's skies, all/most terrains, escaton's crystal and Shadowspire buildings) and then also putting in the proper palettes as additions (1 palette per set of bmps, for instance 1 palette for roads, 1 palette for the cystal, 1 palette for grass etc). And it worked. But do keep in mind, I barely knew what I was doing
Just so happened to find a way that worked.
I'm sorry I can't be of more help