[an error occurred while processing this directive] Game Information: Customisation/ SLIC
REWRITE HISTORY YOUR WAY
A map and scenario editor allow you to build your own historical or fictional situations.
MARIOTTI SPEAKS ON CTP2
(1 April 2000, 2:09 EST) In one of the first interview of a CTP developer after the CTP2 anouncement, Steve Mariotti talked to us about CTP1 and CTP2. As it was the... one year anniversary of CTP1's release, we spoke more about it, but there was some interesting parts on CTP2
On SLIC: SLIC has been significantly reworked to
make it more powerful and easier to work with (can you say 'interactive GUI based debugger?') In fact, SLIC has been more closely integrated with actual game events, so that just about everything can be augmented in the scripts.
On our CTP2 forums: We've taken the fan feedback VERY seriously. The Apolyton group have been great at giving us very cool suggestions for CTP II.
On AAIP files(and obviously other mods): They'll be similar, but different. The concepts and techniques applied to tweaking the AIP's for CTP1 will still be valid for CTP II, but the syntax and value ranges will be different
Finally, again a hint in mods: We've also gone further in the extensibility arena, opening up even more of the engine to others. We're not offering a DLL API for the AI this time, but we're offering a lot more flexibility with just about every aspect of the game engine
Give your comments on this thread!
FLAT MAP SUPPORT
(16 May 2000, 1:09 EST) A long time demand of CTP1 MOD-makers will become reality in CTP2. Flat map support will be there, allowing for types of scenarios that were simply not possible in CTP1.
Related forum thread
(19 May 2000, 20:53 EST) The surprise Mr Ogre promised in the The CTP2 Modification Suggestions List thread, came out to become a surprise for him as well! :) Details in the "CTP2: Gamestate Events" By Joe Rumsey thread...
Oh, and thanks Mr Ogre! CTP2 is sounding cooler every day...
SLIC2 MOD FUNCTION
(8 July 2000, 21:12 EST) Bless Activision's heart: Joe Rumsey, more commonly known as Mr. Ogre in our forums, has released some details on "mod" functions that he's added into the functionality of SLIC2 in Call To Power II.
"I only have them hooked up to a handful of systems right now, but they're very easy for me to add", Rumsey explains, "and I will definitely be doing more. SLIC2 has true functions, so what I've done is made some predefined functions that the game will call to modify various calculations.
A problem with these things is that many systems are order dependent, so I just have to choose one spot in the sequence to check for a SLIC function. But I think that'll be a pretty minor complaint It'll generally be after everything in the game runs".
In the thread, Mr. Ogre also lists and explains an example of the code in action. Who says weekends don't produce big news items?
MAP EDITOR GETS INTELLIGENT
(11 July 2000, 16:27 EST) TheLimey started a thread about the map editor suggesting an "automated create coastline / continental shelf button.", and Mr Ogre responded with something better:
The new map editor is intelligent about beaches and shelves. If you paint water next to land, it puts beaches where you need 'em. Likewise with water next to deep water. No need for a "fix it" button, it happens as you paint.
It might sound as a minor thing, but it's those minor things that make the difference...
CHEAT MODE IN CTP2
(29 October 2000, 12:43 EST) Did wants to know what features are available in cheat mode in CTPII. Pyaray responds within the hour(!):
There is very little you can't do from the cheat mode. However, I'm completely unfamiliar with the cheat mode from CTP1.
You can't rush buy as it were, but you can just build any improvement you want in any city. You can definately change tiles. You grant cities. You can set how much gold. I think you can get the map, but I'm not sure. You can certainly grant any advance. And no, you can't cheat in multiplayer.
TEXT TWEAKABLE AI
(11 October 2000, 18:54 EST) CTPII Designer W. Lee, aka St. Swithin on our forums, responded to a thread about AI in the game started by 'iron_man', whose discussion has been ongoing for a little more than a week now. Lee writes:
... the AI is totally tweakable via text files. I know this because I am doing it now. And I should also mention that the AI text files are about 10 orders of magnitude easier to use than in CTP1.
Oh yeah, one more thing: FLI rules are gone. No more scary, ambiguous, non-debuggable text files.
ST SWITHIN POSTS
(19 October 2000, 2:40 EST) It seems that things have goten very busy in the "CTP2 Labs" and posts from team members have become scarce. "St Swithin" gave answers to two threads though.
On the text files related to AI:
"VERY user-friendly text files, outlining the order of items AI cities build, types of units, and strategies. It's all un-fuzzy (i.e. Boolean) now, which makes it much easier to see what's going on. However, don't mistake "easier" for "less complex" - the number of rules doesn't determine the complexity, it's how they interact."
CUT-AND-PASTE IN MAP EDITOR!
(21 October 2000, 4:36 EST) Something greatly missing from map editors of civ games will be now in CTP2. St Swithin, posted on a thread about the scenario editor:
Well, CTP1's scenario editor worked the way you described: just click and plant, for units, cities, terrain improvements, etc. However, my opinion on CTP2's scenario editor is that it is vastly easier to use, has many, many more features than CTP1's, and combined with the easier AI tweaking capabilities, should make scenario creation much easier and much faster. For example, there is a cut-and-paste feature in the map editing mode. If you create a continent that you want to put in the upper left corner instead of the middle of the screen, just use the drag select, cut, then paste. There are WAY too many features to describe, but we tried to make sure that all useful features suggested by Apolyton, gamers, and team members were implemented.
There goes one of those simple things that we never understood why they weren't in civ games...
BMP TO MAP CONVERSION UTILITY!
(25 October 2000, 15:49 EST) A newly arrived at our forums Activisioner, Tony "neblig" Evans, gave some good news about map editing in CTP2:
You will be able to construct maps in any bitmap graphics editor (such as Photoshop or Paint Shop Pro) and then convert it to a text file which can be imported into the game and then saved as a CTP map. The color palette and the conversion utility will probably be released as a download on Apolyton after the game ships.
It may not be the best(integration into the map editor) way, but it will certainly help!
(2 November 2000, 18:43 EST) Drakenred had a couple of specific questions for Activision on CTPII, and he got his answers from Pyaray. In the order that they were asked:
How fast does time move in each era?
Between 1 and 25 years, depending on skill level and era. More in the early eras, less in the later eras.
This is very much like the case was in CTP, CivI and CivII.
Can you reset time to a shorter span for a faster game?
If you're comfortable changing the data files, it's all in there. But that will change the balance of the game and technology.
Last, but not least:
Can you by extention reset the clock to a monthly-weekly-dayly seting for individual Scenarios?
SLIC QUESTIONS ANSWERED
(3 November 2000, 22:51 EST) Gedrin had three questions for Activision regarding SLIC programming in CTPII, and got his answers from company Game Designer Tony Evans in a timely fashion.
Can units be marked such that only one civ can build them... even if it requires other special conditions?
Yes. One of the new features of SLIC in CTP2 is the mod function. There are several mod functions where you can specify whether individual cities can build a Wonder, building or unit. There is also one to restrict certain players from having specific advances.
Also, can buildings go obsolete? Or at the very least can they be removed with a SLIC command?
Buildings cannot go obsolete, but you can remove them in SLIC.
Do buildings have build_only_one (or even better build_only X) flag seperate from the capitol flag? By that I mean can you flag an arbitrary building (ie not the capitol) such that you can only build one in the empire?
No, but you can mimic that functionality in SLIC.
Is there any SLIC documentation we can get beforehand so us SLIC programmers out here can dream of all the fantastic things we can do?
No documentation beforehand, and I can't say if there will be any official documentation after that game is released. However, I've copiously commented my SLIC scripts for the scenarios in CTP2 so hopefully people will be able to learn by example.
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