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Cipher

Online Character Build Browser

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Hey all!

 

I wanted to give you a sneak-peek at something that I’ve started working on this weekend in order to gather the thoughts and feedback from the community on what you’d like to see in a tool like this.

 

Pictured below is a very early version of an online build browser that can import builds from characters on any of our 5 live shards. The backing data (power data, icons, etc) is automatically updated as we patch the live game, so the browser is always up to date. I haven’t gotten to the point of computing and showing the attribute values (such as defense, recharge, and individual power numbers) yet but that’s something that I’m currently working on.

 

My current plan with this project is to get it to the point where it can be used as a fully functioning online build browser and viewer (where you can search for and view public builds) and release it as such.

 

Here are some screenshots of a build loaded from Excelsior; keep in mind that the the UI is very incomplete. The number on the right side of each power is the level that the character obtained the power and the number under enhancements is that enhancement's level (if it's not attuned). (Yes, I'm aware that the Titan-O has the wrong border, I'm working on it!)

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I should also say that this is still in very early development and we cannot provide an ETA for release of any part of it yet. The back-end is mostly complete but the front-end is still early in design and development.

 

After this first stage I may continue developing it into a full build editor and planner, but in the meantime I’m looking forward to hearing what you all think and incorporating your ideas and feedback!

 

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Cipher

Homecoming Team

 

If you need help, please submit a support request here or use /petition in-game.

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I really like it.  Two questions:

 

1. Would there be any chance of adding a dark red background while viewing a villainous or rogue character build, to keep the game's flavor?

 

2. Would there be any possibility of seeing a character's Incarnate abilities?

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1 minute ago, Apparition said:

I really like it.  Two questions:

 

1. Would there be any chance of adding a dark red background while viewing a villainous or rogue character build, to keep the game's flavor?

 

2. Would there be any possibility of seeing a character's Incarnate abilities?

 

1. This is something that I've already added. Keep in mind that the UI really is unfinished though; the static colour would ideally be switched out with something more aesthetically pleasing.

image.thumb.png.b0c03a96efffc00d031162211fab594e.png

 

2. Yes, this is on the list!

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Cipher

Homecoming Team

 

If you need help, please submit a support request here or use /petition in-game.

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I am guessing this and PK's are the same effort.

 

That said, it's looking nice and clean. Folks will want to see numbers for each power, enhancement and build totals. I would guess these are also known and in the works.

 

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31 minutes ago, VileTerror said:

um, uh . . . is . . . is this related to https://forums.homecomingservers.com/topic/15210-pks-build-planner/ at all?

 

9 minutes ago, Troo said:

I am guessing this and PK's are the same effort.

 

That said, it's looking nice and clean. Folks will want to see numbers for each power, enhancement and build totals. I would guess these are also known and in the works.

 

 

Nope, this is something that I've started working on over the weekend and is unrelated to any existing projects. I am focusing on this being a build and character profile browser first and foremost; anything else would come later, after it's released as a functional browser / viewer.

 

Re: wanting to see numbers - yes, that is the next thing that I will be focusing on with this project 🙂

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Cipher

Homecoming Team

 

If you need help, please submit a support request here or use /petition in-game.

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could we entice you to work on energy transfer instead.. 🤪😁:classic_sad:

 

PK will likely knock it out of the park if they get some help with the UI. Alternately if you compared notes they might switch to a badge tracker or off-line AE mission builder.

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I like that you will have power data baked in. Out of curiosity, if a power drops a patch/pseudopet, will the tool also show its power data? Similar to what RedTomax City of Data did back in the day?



PPM Information Guide                Recharge Guide 

Time Manipulation Guide             Survivability Tool         

Movement Speed: Guide              Interface DoT Procs Guide

 

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1 hour ago, Bopper said:

I like that you will have power data baked in. Out of curiosity, if a power drops a patch/pseudopet, will the tool also show its power data? Similar to what RedTomax City of Data did back in the day?

Powers that create any entity (pets or pseudopets) should display the created entity's powers.

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Cipher

Homecoming Team

 

If you need help, please submit a support request here or use /petition in-game.

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And Cryptic is mourning the loss of such talent they could of used back in the day....


"Farming is just more fun in my opinion, beating up hordes of angry cosplayers...."  - Coyotedancer

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Since I was name dropped a few times:

  • I have nothing to do with this, this is the first I'm hearing of it. 
  • This makes my thing seem like junk, almost like I'm wasting my time. It also already looks a thousand times better. 
  • @Cipher's would of course be inherently better for the simple fact that he HAS the actual data to work with, (and is probably already inherently more familiar with the data since who knows how long he's been working with it) while I'm parsing and scraping stuff from a leak drop from over a year ago, and trying to understand it from the outside looking in.

That all being said... I'm of a torn mind about this. On the one hand this looks awesome and I hope it gives people what they need, on the other... I feel like I just wasted a shit ton of my time on nothing. Ugh. I think I'll stop working on mine now. 

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Cipher, so glad you guys are working on this. I’m happy to volunteer my software development time if it’s useful.

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This is awesome!

 

....badges too?  I have done a bad job maintaining my spreadsheet of which task forces are done.  I see in LFG channel a message for a certain task force or event and I have to find the right character in my pile of alts.  I would keep a browser open and click through/review and know which character to switch to if that was an option.


Long live City of Heroes

www.cityofgaymers.com

 

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Don't give up entirely, Knight!

 

Two immediate options spring to mind:  

- Negotiate with Cipher to enhance your work by bringing it together.

- Pivot your existing efforts and assets in to a new project; after all, you had quite a list of ideas in that poll of yours.  Maybe the work you've done could somehow enhance one of those?

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4 hours ago, The Philotic Knight said:

That all being said... I'm of a torn mind about this. On the one hand this looks awesome and I hope it gives people what they need, on the other... I feel like I just wasted a shit ton of my time on nothing. Ugh. I think I'll stop working on mine now.

Hence why multiple people are advocating that the two of you should be working together on this ...

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Awesome news and work.  Thank you. 

 

May I make a few suggestions?

 

1.  Place the primary powerset where "inherent" is now, followed by secondary, then inherent and inherent fitness.  That would make it similar to all previous hero builders that I am aware of.  And it just makes sense that the primary and secondary powersets should be in the primary and secondary positions.  And then maybe one more column for incarnate powers?

 

2.  A function to auto six-slot a power with a selected IO set.  You may not always want to six slot a power with one set, but when you do, that function would be a helpful time saver.

 

3.  A set bonus finder.  Sometimes you just need a little more "oomph" to get softcapped defense or perma-hasten or whatever build goal you want.  A way to search for set bonuses would be very helpful for those occasions, especially for folks less familiar with all the IO sets.

 

4.  Remove walk.  While it is an inherent power I think it's just taking up valuable screen space.

 

 

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29 minutes ago, Redlynne said:

Hence why multiple people are advocating that the two of you should be working together on this ...

Except that I'm not a part of the HC team, and as far as I'm aware, as long as The Negotiations™ are ongoing, that team makeup won't change. I don't think HC is taking any type of code work, and I don't know that they're releasing any code work to the public, due to the whole NDA thing. So, from what I can see, that's not a possibility. 

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12 minutes ago, The Philotic Knight said:

Except that I'm not a part of the HC team, and as far as I'm aware, as long as The Negotiations™ are ongoing, that team makeup won't change. I don't think HC is taking any type of code work, and I don't know that they're releasing any code work to the public, due to the whole NDA thing. So, from what I can see, that's not a possibility. 

@Cipher ... care to comment on this point?

It would be nice to know that PK is wrong (or right) about this notion ...

 

I can even envision a wrinkle/loophole in the perception of this ... in that the code work wouldn't be changing anything about THE GAME ... but rather only using the code for a resource external to the game itself (the build planner).  You could even compartmentalize the dataset such that only @Cipher has direct access to the game code, while @The Philotic Knight only has access to an exported "copy" of the dataset relevant to the web effort, and the two of you coordinate on how to build the web page that makes the whole thing work as both a public facing "City Terminal" to view character database info outside the game AND as a build planner web page based application "outside" the game itself.  That way, @The Philotic Knight isn't being given access to the actual game code to modify the code the game uses.

 

Of course, all of that depends on the legal-ish-isms that the Homecoming team is operating under while negotiating with NC$oft, so interpretations are going to matter for this.

 

I'm just thinking it would be a ... waste ... to throw away all of PK's efforts and enthusiasm for this so desperately needed toolset for Players that is at least a decade overdue by now ...

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Thanks, 'lynne.  Exactly what I (and I imagine a lot of other folks) has on the mind.

And if it goes well, maybe future ventures could use such a model as well.

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5 hours ago, The Philotic Knight said:

I'm of a torn mind about this. On the one hand this looks awesome and I hope it gives people what they need, on the other... I feel like I just wasted a shit ton of my time on nothing. Ugh. I think I'll stop working on mine now. 

Here's the thing.  Cipher called this an "online build browser".  It can be used to view publicly accessible builds, which conceivably people would have to opt in to.  That is great, but I would rarely use that, myself.  He notes at the end he might turn it into a planner ("maybe").

 

I want a Build Planner.  Viewing other people's builds for inspiration is great, but I want to PLAN my own.  So, the important thing here would be how serious that intention to add planner functionality is.  If he's going to leave it at viewer, your online Planner will still be sorely needed.  A pause may be in order until we get a more final idea from Cipher, but don't throw your work away.

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8 minutes ago, Caulderone said:

A pause may be in order until we get a more final idea from Cipher, but don't throw your work away.

Quoted For Emphasis.


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The primary goal of my project is to be an online place to view character profiles, builds, and other information from in-game (essentially what City Vault was meant to be before it was scrapped during Live, or comparable to CIT). If build planning / editing were added it would be much further down the road. If the UI is something that PK (or possibly someone else working on a similar project) is interested in, it should be fairly straight-forward to share it so that it's components could be utilized for other projects. Right now it's written with React and it doesn't have any other dependencies (yet).

 

An easier way for third-party developers to access the power data that they need for their projects is something that I've been wanting to do, but doing it a clean and low-maintenance way isn't something we've had the time to figure out just yet.

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Cipher

Homecoming Team

 

If you need help, please submit a support request here or use /petition in-game.

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