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Banished Mod Support

Jul 11 2014 04:07 AM | DarkXess in General News

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Banished mod support is on the way, says developer

I killed a lot of people in Banished. You may have read something about that. The medieval settlement simulator has a distinct SimCity vibe to it but operates on a much more personal level: Individual settlers have names and lives and sometimes alarmingly delicate constitutions, which is problematic when you're in the middle of a heavy winter and the guy who's supposed to be out chopping trees has turned into one. That sort of dilemma may soon be considerably less troublesome, however, as developer Luke Hodorowicz recently revealed that he's spent the past few weeks working to bring mod support to the game.

Time constraints meant that support for mods in Banished was never really on the table, Hodorowicz explained, but as it turns out, the toolset he wrote to assist with the game's development is actually pretty well suited for the job. Of course, a good bit of tweaking is still required, and that's what he's been up to recently: Ensuring that multiple mods won't conflict and that save games keep a record of which mods were being used for which games, so players can experiment with different mods in different games.

"I’ve also got to decide what to do about achievements," Hodorowicz wrote. "Some mods, like translations shouldn’t change the difficulty in getting achievements, but other mods can allow placing buildings for free and adding resources and citizens with the press of a button. That clearly nullifies the achievement process."

It also cuts down on the likelihood of a disastrous crop failure reducing your thriving hamlet to a deathly-silent ghost town, but then that's half the fun, isn't it? Not necessarily, actually; it's one thing to watch Godzilla stomp through your faceless metropolis, but another thing entirely when little Doren takes his last breath, shudders and dies because you forgot to plant the turnips. Even so, I'm happy it's coming: In many ways, Banished already feels like a bizarre, cruel little digital laboratory, and in that light the addition of mod support is a natural fit.

Source: PC Gamer.

Read story →    0 comments    -----    News, Banished, Modding and 1 more...

Modsaholic - Staff Wanted!

Apr 21 2014 10:45 AM | DarkXess in General News

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Modsaholic - Staff Wanted!

Hey guys, currently at Modsaholic we are looking for staff members to help us out with posting news & making download pages for various games of your choice as long as they are games which are moddable.

Your duties will include uploading files to our host, sorting out images in the right size and format, making a download page or news page to our specific template, plus being active with these current positions. So if your interested then send me a PM or have a say in the comment of this post and I will get back to you.

Please only contact us if your serious about helping us out as it does take up a lot of time and dedication on keeping the site up to date with the latest news and mods around the internet.

The Modsaholic Team

Read story →    0 comments    -----    Modsaholic, News, Staff

Citybound, an offline and moddable city-buildin...

Mar 12 2014 08:34 AM | DarkXess in General News

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Citybound, an offline and moddable city-building sim announced

With Citybound, designer Anselm Eickhoff has a simple goal—"to do something crazy." A 21-year-old computer science student in Munich, Germany, he originally set out to make an alternative to SimCity, according to a story at Gamasutra. Citybound will be browser-based and run offline, with moddability as "a priority, not an afterthought," according to Eickhoff's dev blog.

The game will support large cities and regions that can be simulated at once and not rely on what Eickhoff calls "tiny city lots or artificial city interaction dynamics." Citybound will also offer procedural buildings and a level of simulation that takes into account individual cars and pedestrians, according to a post introducing the project.

"Ever since I played A-Train and SimCity 2000 as a child, this was my dream," Eickhoff writes. "Now I have the technology, the skills and the knowledge to implement it."

Eickhoff currently works as a web developer for a German radio broadcaster, according to Gamasutra, and for the time being is developing Citybound alone. He's not planning a Kickstarter or Indiegogo proposal to raise funds, but will instead offer paid early-access to the game in a way similar to Overgrowth and Minecraft, according to a recent Reddit post.

"I'm not financially dependent of this being a success, but if it does make some money, I can put even more time into it," writes Eickhoff on Reddit. "I like this organic process better than thinking of stretch goals now and hoping that it works out."

Since posting his plans on the SimCity subreddit, Eickhoff writes on his blog that the attention paid to his project has made him decide to "streamline" his life a bit more so he can devote more time to Citybound. He hopes to release a playable alpha in the next three months. For additional images and examples of the animation Eickhoff is designing, be sure to check out his dev blog here.

Source: PC Gamer.

Read story →    0 comments    -----    News, Citybound, Modding and 1 more...

Project Zomboid Mapping Tools Released

Jan 22 2014 04:31 PM | DarkXess in General News

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Project Zomboid mapping tools released: die horribly in your own backyard

The Indie Stone have released the mapping tools for Project Zomboid, their indie zombie survival game. If you’ve ever felt the urge to see your home-town overrun with zombies - and who hasn’t - your time has finally come.

The tools, which were used by developers for creating the in-game maps Muldraugh and West Point, will let players create their own sandbox maps in whatever sadistic or artistic manner they choose. The question is no longer just how you die, but where.

The game is still only available in its alpha stage, but already has incredible levels of customisation. By releasing the mapping tools to the community, The Indie Stone are hoping to create an “explosion” of user-created content. Already praised for it’s replayability, Project Zomboid could give players the opportunity to experience the whole world (and beyond) as a zombie infested wasteland. Using the map tools, players are able to build individual houses, islands, and a lot more - but not change the existing maps themselves.

While this may become possible in the future, The Indie Stone want to keep the focus on creating brand new community content to expand the experience of Project Zomboid. Ambitious community projects are already in the works, including skyscrapers and a huge community map. Players are also hoping to recreate famous zombie films using the game’s Last Stand mode.

The modding community have already had a strong influence on the game’s development - after all, The Indie Stone hired one of their modders last year.

Although there are currently no tutorials available for using the map tools, a community wiki has already been put up at pzwiki.net, and developers are still on hand in The Indie Stone forum to help out. The tools are worth checking out - and could give you a tactical advantage when the real apocalypse hits!

Read story →    0 comments    -----    Project Zomboid, Mapping, Tools and 1 more...

Total War: Rome 2 Official Mod Tools

Jan 22 2014 04:26 PM | DarkXess in General News

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Total War: Rome 2 official mod tools now in open beta

Total War: Rome 2 has had Steam Workshop support since last October, but mod-makers have had to cobble together their tweaks and edits through community made tools, bits of string and frequent swearing. Now, though, Creative Assembly are providing their Assembly Kit as an open beta to community creators, giving them the chance to try out the official suite of tools before their upcoming full release.

"Following the successful launch of the Steam Workshop for ROME II," announces the Total War wiki, "we are pleased to release version one of the Assembly Kit for ROME II. The Assembly Kit is currently in Beta, and its feature-set will expand over time. If you have any questions or find any bugs to report, please visit the official forums here."

As with the Shogun 2 Assembly Kit, the Rome 2 open beta can be accessed through your Steam library's Tools section. Creative Assembly claim that they'll be adding documentation and guides over the coming weeks, providing a complete run-down of the kit's functionality. For more information on the tools available, head to the Assembly Kit section of the Total War wiki.

Read story →    0 comments    -----    Total War: Rome 2, News, Tools and 1 more...

WIP Report - NYPD "55th Precinct"

Jan 13 2014 11:28 AM | DarkXess in General News

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Bosco released some new pictures showing the progress of his NYPD "55th Precinct" - Massive Texture Pack on the Modsaholic forums.

Quote Bosco :
Hello! Alright so, here's a project I am currently working on, it's my NYPD Overhaul texture pack. I'm trying to make pretty much every units (or most of the units) in the NYPD ranging between around 2005 to now.

Will include; Proper ELS Settings & configuration. New NYPD Peds. Skins from NYPD Aux. / Traffic / ESU.. etc. K9 Dog NYPD Texture. Might include; Police Department Interior Textures (if I have time..

About Precinct 55, it's a fictional PCT used in many movies and TV Shows including Third Watch, so I simply decided to name my modpack like this as a tribute for it.

You can find more info about this project in the NYPD "55th Precinct" - Massive Texture Pack wip thread.

Read story →    0 comments    -----    GTA IV, WIP, NYPD, Textures

Maxis Encourages SimCity Modding

Jan 11 2014 11:05 PM | DarkXess in General News

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Maxis encourages SimCity modding, then sets restrictive ground rules

Before it was released, SimCity Creative Director Ocean Quigley (who has since left Maxis to form an independent studio) said that SimCity's GlassBox engine was "built to be moddable." That may be true, but SimCity the game is a curated always-online ecosystem, not a fertile, offline ground for experiments which would otherwise interfere with the official multiplayer experience. The two seem at odds with each other, but yesterday, Maxis wrote that it encourages us to "create, redistribute, and consume Mods for SimCity." How does that work?

"...As long as you respect all of the rules and guidelines set in this policy." SimCity's always-online nature demands that mods are regulated against abuse, so Maxis has set a list of restrictions for potential mod-makers. You can read the official rules in the blog post, but I've interpreted them below:

1. Don't mess with "the simulation for multiplayer games and multiplayer features" and don't "jeopardize the integrity of the gameplay." This is confusing—how does one mod the single-player simulation without potentially affecting multiplayer games? This rule prevents more than it lets on.

2. Keep it ESRB E10+ and PEGI 7, don't use copyrighted material, don't abuse anyone, don't do anything illegal, don't mess with the executable files.

3. The SimCity EULA and EA’s Terms of Service supersede these rules. This is a catch-all for loopholes they may have missed.

4. If Maxis doesn't like what you're up to, it can revoke these permissions and is free to "take disciplinary action against players who harm the experience of others." Presumably that's an account restriction or ban, not a time-out in the corner.

5. You can't sell mods, and EA doesn't owe you any money for making them. It also doesn't need your permission to distribute your mod or do anything else with it. This is lawsuit-avoidance stuff—you don't get to claim EA stole and profited off your derivative work because Maxis promoted or distributed it.

So, if you keep it kid-friendly, keep it non-infringing, and don't do anything that might affect the multiplayer experience in any way, go for it. Some already have been—Maxis points to modding sites, where mods have been posted which do everything from replace the train models to change the color of garbage trucks.

I don't mean to disparage those modders' work—visual changes are great—but they could be doing so much more if they were allowed to. There is some good news on that front—or, at least, a reminder that good news is still being examined. In a forum post today, Maxis reiterated that it is still "exploring an Offline Single Player mode" to give players "more room to experiment without sacrificing the integrity and experience" of the multiplayer.

That's what SimCity needs to truly support modding. Until players can get into the engine's guts and make something new—and aren't told not to or made to fear repercussions for affecting someone else's multiplayer game—it's only nominally "moddable." I appreciate that Maxis is encouraging modders, and that these rules are a stopgap, but I'd also love to stop hearing about explorations into Official Offline Mode Land, and start hearing about how we can found a settlement there.

Read story →    0 comments    -----    News, Modding, SimCity, Maxis

Rekoil Modding Competition

Jan 11 2014 10:57 PM | DarkXess in General News

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Rekoil modding competition invites you to build maps and win a gaming PC

Are you one of those talented, saintly modders who creates and uploads content to the Steam Workshop for free? It’s time you put those skills to good use and treat yourself to something nice, like a new gaming PC. Rekoil, the upcoming multiplayer first-person shooter from 505 Games and Plastic Piranha is holding a map-making contest that will let you win just that, and then some.

On the weekend starting March 14, developer Plastic Piranha will hold a Play&Vote event, giving players a chance to take all the submitted maps out for a spin and vote for their favorite. The mapper with the most votes will win an Alienware Aurora gaming desktop, Dell UltraSharp monitor, Alienware TactX keyboard, TactX mouse, TactX headset, and potentially life altering fame.

To enter, register here to receive your free Steam code for the Rekoil map-making mod tools. You’ll have until midnight PST, March 7 to submit your map. The winner will be announced on March 20.

You can read up on further instructions here, and the contest rules here.

At this point you might be asking yourself, what the hell is Rekoil? Fair question. Plastic Piranha has framed it as a “back to basics” first person shooter with a focus on mod support and eSports. Rather than letting you slowly unlock weapons and skills as you would in Battlefield or Call of Duty, it dumps you and your friends into an arena with a selection of over 40 weapons and simply lets you go at it.

Rekoil will release on Steam January 28 for $15.

Read story →    0 comments    -----    News, Modding, Rekoil and 1 more...

Titanfall set to drop without mod tools

Jan 04 2014 12:09 PM | DarkXess in General News

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Titanfall set to drop without mod tools, Respawn to "evaluate" after launch

It's 2014, which means Titanfall finally makes its debut this year and not next year. With the shooter's March 11 release on the horizon, we now know we won't be seeing any PC mod or map tools launching with the game, according to a recent tweet from Respawn Entertainment co-founder Vince Zampella.

In one of his last messages of 2013, Zampella responded to a question about the possibility of getting modding tools alongside the game: "Not at launch for sure," he writes. "Will have to evaluate after launch."

It's a key detail for an entirely new shooter whose developer draws so much of its DNA from work on multiplayer-heavy games like Call of Duty, where individual maps become so integral to the experience and come to define much of what we think of when we play an FPS. We've also known for a while now that what Titanfall is attempting to do is fuse together a multiplayer game with story elements that would typically surface in a single-player campaign.

It's not clear yet how this mixture will play out in the game, but it's conceivable that this is a balance that needs to be carefully worked out, even if the game's potentially massive audience would likely love to take a crack at creating its own stories and settings. Since Zampella didn't rule it out entirely, we'll have to stay tuned.

Read story →    0 comments    -----    News, Modding, Titanfall, Tools

Gabe Newell on Modders

Jan 04 2014 11:58 AM | DarkXess in General News

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Gabe Newell on modders: "Traditional" credentials don't always predict success

Given the importance and success of games like Counter-Strike, Team Fortress 2, and more recently Dota 2, Valve's modding DNA is pretty iron-clad. A new interview with co-founder Gabe Newell in the Washington Post gives some insight into just why it is that modders—and their work—seem to find a home at Valve.

It's not about having a "PhD from an Ivy League school," but rather seeing what people can accomplish on their own, according to Newell. Grades, for example, "don't tell you anything," he says.

"Well, the traditional credentialing really doesn't have a lot of predictive value to whether people will be successful," Newell says. "One of the things you have to do to be successful in our business is to be responsive to reactions that people have. You can give ten people the same set of forum posts and only one of them will actually take it in a productive direction. So the fact that somebody has been able to build something and ship it and not get sort of bogged down and give up and then deal with the gush of responses you get, filter through that in a useful and productive way and iterate is really the core of product design and development in our world."

While he points out that successful people often earn good grades, those who "have shown that ability to engage and entertain and respond to an audience" are demonstrating a vital attribute for people interested in working at Valve.

"So when you see somebody who has already done that, especially if nobody was teaching or leading them to do that it's a really good sign that they're going to be successful," Newell says.

It's worth noting that we've seen other cases of modding work taking a person to a job at a large game company. Remeber Alexander Velicky and his Skyrim mod? He works for Bungie now. You can also read here how Philipp “Benzenzimmern” Weber went from modding the Witcher 2 to a job at CD Projekt RED.

The entire interview, the first of two parts, is a good read for anyone interested in how the industry-leading company functions on the inside. Newell touches on the process of relating to customers, what he learned from the Diretide situation, as well as more on what it takes to get talented people to commit to Valve. We'll be keeping an eye out for part two when it surfaces.

Read story →    0 comments    ***--    Modding, News, Community

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