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By Nordicus
About the author: Hopeless Civ & CTP addict

Hey, fellow civers....I'm not a programmer or such, so please view this information with skepticism (I would), use caution, common sense, and don't blame me if something goes wrong! I'm just an average guy who's addicted to Civilization: Call to Power. I've been working with some great people on the improvement and modification of Civ:CTP, as well as trying to address some of the game's bugs, annoying quirks, and so forth. Most of what I've personally learned has been through trial and error--and countless crashes and errors and...headaches.

So, to prevent someone else from having to go through this and to share what I've discovered about CTP and how to change or customize it, I have a few answers to questions I've seen floating around for a while. I will try to be as detailed as I can, so if to you I seem patronizing, please humor me--this is intended for everyone, not only seasoned vets.

Firstly, this is presuming you have Windows 95/98. Secondly, one must be aware of the location of certain files: in your Activision, Civ:CTP file folder, you will see a "ctp_data" file. In that are the important folders--namely, "default" and "english" (or whatever language version you have). When I refer to files, they'll be in either of these. Familiarity with your CTP files is a definite advantage--explore!


In the "default" folder, find "gamedata." In here contains a great deal of edittable files. The "Units" file is the one you want. Generally, if you're not sure about messing with something, leave it and ask for advice and always BACK UP the files (copy and paste elsewhere) before changing! There are all sorts of bits of code, either in word form or with numbers, which define what the unit is, does, and so on--most of it is fairly easy to understand. If you see something, say, in the case of the "hoplite" (otherwise called "phalanx") unit, "MAX_HP 10" or "ATTACK 10" or "DEFENSE 20," in one unit, it can be used in another unit--if you want your phalanx to have a DEFENSE value of 10 instead or 20, change it. Look at the other units to see what qualities they possess, especially the "special flags" part. Note: to avoid chaos, try making the minimal number of changes at once if you are not that experienced; changing dozens of units and making one little mistake might make it difficult to locate the problem later...try one unit at a time, then test, to start with.

This can be applied to governments ("govern" file), advances ("Advance" file), wonders ("wonder" file), etc., in the default/gamedata folder.


Default/gamedata folder: the text file is called "DiffDB." You will see that each difficulty level has its own settings that controls the starting year, years per turn for each period, etc. Increasing the number after "YEARS_PER_TURN" in all periods (and for all difficulty levels, which is advisable but not necassary) will accomplish this. My personal preference was to set back the starting date by 1000 years, (-5000 rather than -4000) but this may not be what you want. Again, back up the file so that you can go back to the original if you wish...and always test before.


Colors (of civilizations and the radar map--even text) can be changed in "Colors00" in your default/gamedata folder. There are colors for each player in the game--changing the numbers for the appropriate player (civ) in the three sets of numbers will accomplish this (for example, if you want to change your civ's color to, say, black, find the player one setting--
--which is silver here in my game--and change these numbers to:
This can be done for the radar map and text on messages, etc., as well. For my radar map I changed each terrain to reflect actual terrain color (yellow for desert, tan for plains, and so on). Knowledge of color values is of course very helpful.


In the "english" folder, find the file called "civ_str," and take a look. You can change not only the the civ names but also their leaders, city names, and diplomat photos. If changing names, be sure the change has both opening and closing quotation marks, otherwise (as I've found) you'll have trouble.

Well, there's a lot more, I know, but here's a few to start anyway. Being my first column, I will probably have more info next time--I hope. Any questions will likely be answered for you in the Creation or General CTP forums here.

Until then....

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