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I will be using this page to note updates to, and new mods found/created for the CoH Modder tool, which can be found here.

 

To start with, I'm probably going to (as I have time), go through the old list of existing mods and start converting them one by one to this program's new format, to make for easy installation.

 

Here's the first one - VidiotMaps I23 Map Pack

 

I'm also going to be trying to contact mod authors and letting them know about this tool, so that hopefully it inspires them to make more mods!

 

Please use this space to discuss this application, make feature/bugfix requests, and post links to your own CoH mods!

 

Here's a good intro video that @Solarverse created:

 

 

Edited by The Philotic Knight
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Recent changes that I just pushed out from the first release of the program:

  • Added "Browse for Mod to Install" that automates the process even further by automatically inserting the mod you browse for into the Mods directory, adds it to the Mods list, and then installs it all at once.
  • Added "Add Data Folder to Files" button on the Create/Edit Mod window that with a single button click, grabs the /data folder as a "snapshot" and automatically inserts ALL files in that folder into the files list, making converting "old" mods into CoH Modder mods EASY!
  • Corrected a bug in the Create/Edit Mod window that would allow a user to over-write an existing mod with an entirely different mod by accident. Now, it has to be intentional.
  • Auto-sorted the ListBoxes containing the Uninstalled and Installed mods by Description
  • Added a Refresh button, so that when people plot mods down in their /mods directory, they don't have to restart the program to see the changes

I've also already repackaged a few previous mods and placed them in a list at the bottom of the page, for convenience.

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Hmm. As I'm reading (and seeing) it, it's only finding mods "installed by this tool."

Is it possible to have it look for already installed ones? Granted it probably wouldn't have the names and such, but I've got (for instance) Vidiotmaps and the PB sound restoration on, which are unseen by this. Or would I just have to find the zip files and have it install over the top?

 

(Which shouldn't harm anything, since it's the same files, granted.)

 

Edit: Re-reading, it almost looks like they'd need to be repackaged with info for the program to see. Is this correct?

Edited by Greycat

Primarily on Everlasting. Squid afficionado. Former creator of Copypastas. General smartalec.

 

Please, if you feel the need to shoot down someone's suggestion by saying "It's not worth the devs time," don't. The devs are big boys and girls and can determine for themselves what is or is not worth their time, they don't need you to do it.

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12 minutes ago, Greycat said:

Hmm. As I'm reading (and seeing) it, it's only finding mods "installed by this tool."

Is it possible to have it look for already installed ones? Granted it probably wouldn't have the names and such, but I've got (for instance) Vidiotmaps and the PB sound restoration on, which are unseen by this. Or would I just have to find the zip files and have it install over the top?

 

(Which shouldn't harm anything, since it's the same files, granted.)

 

Edit: Re-reading, it almost looks like they'd need to be repackaged with info for the program to see. Is this correct?

Yes, exactly.

 

Part of the reason why I made this tool was because it's a problem that mods in the past were NOT in fact fully encapsulated packages following any sort of standard format, but rather just a loose collection of files stored in a zip file, or a directory inside of a zip file. Previous mods were never really a "package". The closest thing was the Vidiotmaps installer, but that didn't really create a standard for others to follow. So that's why it's a pain in the ass to try to just uninstall one mod, and leave others.

 

By packaging them with an informative description file, that description file can then inform the program (and any human that wants to open up the file itself and stare at it in a text editor), EXACTLY what files are contained in the mod, and where they will end up going. This also allows for easy removal/un-installation, a task that wasn't easy before either, unless you re-downloaded the original mod, had the contents open up in one window and compared your /data folder in the other window and manually removed the files one-by-one.

 

Now I'm sure that the HC team will be able to do a far better job than I whenever they get around to implementing their built-in solution. I'm a mediocre programmer at best, so I'm sure that my solution is not ideal by far. But until then, this is the best thing to happen to the modding community since the source code was released. Because while it was pretty quick and easy for me to setup, NOBODY HAD DONE IT BEFORE, which frankly shocks me, because it was so easy for me to make something in the span of a few hours, that can and will save modders and users hours and hours of work and confusion.

Edited by The Philotic Knight
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Well, thanks. 🙂 Yeah, come to think of it, I'm kind of surprised as well, though other than vidiotmaps I don't recall much discussion *of* mods in general, which probably led to that situation. So hopefully we'll see some repackaging done to use this.


Primarily on Everlasting. Squid afficionado. Former creator of Copypastas. General smartalec.

 

Please, if you feel the need to shoot down someone's suggestion by saying "It's not worth the devs time," don't. The devs are big boys and girls and can determine for themselves what is or is not worth their time, they don't need you to do it.

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Okay, I have to ask the obvious:

 

Besides the Vidiot Maps and the sound mods, what other mods are there?

 

For example, has anyone made an in-window clock? I used to use HeroStats for that; always found it annoying not to know what time it was IRL while playing. Feels like Vegas, where they try quite intentionally to keep you from the current time. 😜

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3 hours ago, CFIndustries said:

Okay, I have to ask the obvious:

 

Besides the Vidiot Maps and the sound mods, what other mods are there?

 

For example, has anyone made an in-window clock? I used to use HeroStats for that; always found it annoying not to know what time it was IRL while playing. Feels like Vegas, where they try quite intentionally to keep you from the current time. 😜

I've started converting (with the permission of the original authors) some of the old mods, which can be found at the bottom of the CoH Modder's page.

 

Here's one list, I'm sure there's others out there:

 

But really, honestly, most things in the game that are client-side can be changed. Costume pieces, UI elements, all of the sounds. Just about anything that doesn't directly have to do with the game mechanics itself and the way the client talks to the server is up for grabs. The challenge is the "duct tape and twine" philosophy of Cryptic that made figuring out HOW to change WHAT a huge PITA.

 

So, until someone decides to spend the hours and hours it would take to go through the code and learn definitely how to tell which texture/sound/UI element is related to which specific source files (so that they can be replaced), the modding "community" as a whole isn't so much of a modding community, as it is a rag-tag group of random people with almost no communication or information sharing between them.

Edited by The Philotic Knight

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2 hours ago, CFIndustries said:

Okay, I have to ask the obvious:

 

Besides the Vidiot Maps and the sound mods, what other mods are there?

Off the top of my head, and not just counting Solarverse's, there were icon changes/fixes, logo changes, a few costume changes, and power effect changes scattered around. Heck, look around and there's probably one that has everyone running around naked, because of course there is.


Primarily on Everlasting. Squid afficionado. Former creator of Copypastas. General smartalec.

 

Please, if you feel the need to shoot down someone's suggestion by saying "It's not worth the devs time," don't. The devs are big boys and girls and can determine for themselves what is or is not worth their time, they don't need you to do it.

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4 hours ago, The Philotic Knight said:

I've started converting (with the permission of the original authors) some of the old mods, which can be found at the bottom of the CoH Modder's page.

 

Here's one list, I'm sure there's others out there:

 

But really, honestly, most things in the game that are client-side can be changed. Costume pieces, UI elements, all of the sounds. Just about anything that doesn't directly have to do with the game mechanics itself and the way the client talks to the server is up for grabs. The challenge is the "duct tape and twine" philosophy of Cryptic that made figuring out HOW to change WHAT a huge PITA.

 

So, until someone decides to spend the hours and hours it would take to go through the code and learn definitely how to tell which texture/sound/UI element is related to which specific source files (so that they can be replaced), the modding "community" as a whole isn't so much of a modding community, as it is a rag-tag group of random people with almost no communication or information sharing between them.

To add to the "duct tape and twine" comment... Not to mention, the person/s who was responsible for putting together the folders for these pigg files was absolutely horrible with their organization skills. Those sound bites are all over the place and take a lot of time trying to figure out which ones fit which powers. Most of them only give a small hint to what SFX they are associated with. For me that is the hardest part about making SFX Mods is that I get to sift through literally (guessing) a few thousand files trying to figure out which one contains the sound bite I wish to alter. Newer abilities in the later years of the game started becoming more organized and those are a bit easier to put together because some of them have names that represent the power-set they belong to. But the older sounds are a bit annoying.

For an example: The HeavyHands_BoneSmasher_Hit.ogg file; you would think that it has to do with Energy Melee, right? Nope, it's a sound related to an NPC, almost sounds like it could be used by Rularu. Or how about PP10a.ogg? It doesn't look like much of anything, but the power associated with it is actually a hit file for one of the Energy Melee abilities...who knew, right? I would never have guessed it, only way I learned is by forcing myself to scan endlessly and listen to each and every file that is not obvious to find that file. The only real way to find out what is what would be to rip it and play it.

Then you have some of the newer powers and SFX for those powers created under a different team (or leadership?) in which the files start looking a lot more like what they apply to. Thank Yoda!

As @The Philotic Knight has mentioned, it's tons of duct tape and twine along with a mile long of red tape, lol.

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Something to point out about the Maps, you might want to use a merger of the original and the add-ons for accuracy sake. See the related thread for what I'm talking about if you've forgotten/not know about it.


OG Server: Pinnacle  <||>  Current Primary Server: Torchbearer  ||  Also found on the others if desired


Installing CoX:  Windows  ||  MacOS  ||  MacOS for M1  <||>  Migrating Data from an Older Installation


Clubs: Mid's Hero Designer  ||  PC Builders  ||  HC Wiki  ||  Jerk Hackers


Old Forums  <||>  Titan Network  <||>  The City Representative (Info site for all servers)  <||>  Heroica! (by @Shenanigunner)

 

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@WanderingAries I've already contacted Blondeshell for permission to use her updates. I'm waiting for a response. The old VidiotMaps team seems long gone, so I figured it was okay to use theirs.

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On 8/6/2020 at 7:19 PM, Solarverse said:

As @The Philotic Knight has mentioned, it's tons of duct tape and twine along with a mile long of red tape, lol.

Well, there might be some solutions to that, if I have the time, I can work backwards from the code and figure out a definitive list of sounds and what "events" in-game they are associated with. It's just a matter of me setting aside time to do so. That would sure beat having to listen to sounds in-game and comparing them to the .ogg files found...

 

In the meantime, the list of Mods has grown to lucky 13. It's my hopes that over time, as people see the structure of these files, they'll see how easy it can be to actually make a mod once the source/replacement file locations are:

 

image.png.3341426455b3a2f21876d48ad39a7dac.png

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@The Philotic Knightso you're only displaying the results of positive approvals then? Ok, one I don't see so far is the base mode for portal zone names. I think I'll G-Drive what "I" have picked up in these forums and give you a link.


OG Server: Pinnacle  <||>  Current Primary Server: Torchbearer  ||  Also found on the others if desired


Installing CoX:  Windows  ||  MacOS  ||  MacOS for M1  <||>  Migrating Data from an Older Installation


Clubs: Mid's Hero Designer  ||  PC Builders  ||  HC Wiki  ||  Jerk Hackers


Old Forums  <||>  Titan Network  <||>  The City Representative (Info site for all servers)  <||>  Heroica! (by @Shenanigunner)

 

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I just made a major update over at http://www.cityofplayers.com/coh-modder/

 

@Solarverse had the great idea to build the ability to acquire and "register" mods built right into the program, rather than having to contact me, then having me manually upload them to the website. So, that's done now. Instead of an "Installed Mods" and an "Uninstalled Mods" ListBox, there's now three including the new "Server Mods" ListBox. This ListBox lets you see all mods available on the server right now, and you can install them directly from the app, without having to visit the website and manually installing them yourself:

 

image.png.593968c27fd1f22226e9741833491cc2.png

 

 

And, if you happen to be a Mod Author, I made a button on the Create/Edit screen that immediately allows you to upload your work directly to my server and "register" it with the application, with just a click of this button:

image.png.1accf6af8b7036e6f84974997081e9a9.png

 

Another minor change for Mod Authors was that the ability to remove files can now be done en masse, rather than just one at at time. Mostly because it was irritating me during my testing.

 

Happy modding! 🙂

 

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Hey, PK, just downloaded this. While some of the mods offered are familiar, I don't recognize every one and don't know what they do. I was wondering if there could be a brief explanation section?

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Yes @Lamia, when you click on the name of a mod in ANY of the ListBoxes, the description should appear in the textbox to the right. That description for the existing mods is pretty much what I copied and pasted from their forum descriptions pretty much. If you want to know any more, you'll have to contact the mod authors for more details (I've provided the URL of the original source wherever possible in the Description):

image.png.a444e69513558f8d34dd15b8a96ec513.png

 

Does that answer your question?

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3 minutes ago, The Philotic Knight said:

Yes @Lamia, when you click on the name of a mod in ANY of the ListBoxes, the description should appear in the textbox to the right. That description for the existing mods is pretty much what I copied and pasted from their forum descriptions pretty much. If you want to know any more, you'll have to contact the mod authors for more details (I've provided the URL of the original source wherever possible in the Description):

image.png.a444e69513558f8d34dd15b8a96ec513.png

 

Does that answer your question?

Yes, thank you!  It takes a moment to appear, so I'd already looked away. Double checked and they do show up.

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That delay may happen in the top "Server Mods" ListBox @Lamia, since in that ListBox, every time you click I'm going out to the server to get the Mod information for that mod. The delay shouldn't happen in the other two ListBoxes, since they pull their information from the mod files that exist on your hard drive.

 

Let me know how the program works for you, and if you run into any bugs!

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Here's an odd one for you: If I install a mod, the resulting filenames are doubled! for example, what's supposed to be background.texture is instead written out to background.texturebackground.texture which doesn't really work out so well.

 

A little digging reveals that it's something to do with how the filenames are stored in Mod.Info – specifically, whether the destination path includes the filename itself. To illustrate:

    <SourceFile>C:\CoH\data\texture_library\GUI\CREATION\HybridUI\CharecterCreationUI\background.texture</SourceFile>
    <Destination>data\texture_library\GUI\CREATION\HybridUI\CharecterCreationUI\background.texture</Destination>

causes the filename doubling, but the following works properly:

    <SourceFile>C:\CoH\data\texture_library\GUI\CREATION\HybridUI\CharecterCreationUI\background.texture</SourceFile>
    <Destination>data\texture_library\GUI\CREATION\HybridUI\CharecterCreationUI\</Destination>

 

Furthermore, when removing any mod, no files are actually deleted! Since the destination path seems to be the culprit, I should probably mention that my CoH install path is "C:\program\City of Heroes\" so perhaps something's choking on the spaces?

 

 

I'm also seeing an issue where every local install or uninstall action causes another fetch of the mod list from the server. It's not a big deal, but it adds up when trying to troubleshoot! 😁

Edited by ElectricKeet

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@ElectricKeet those were bugs with a very specific version of the app that was online for about 6 hours. You must have downloaded it during that time. Please re-download the app and let me know if you have any further problems.

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10 minutes ago, The Philotic Knight said:

@ElectricKeet those were bugs with a very specific version of the app that was online for about 6 hours. You must have downloaded it during that time. Please re-download the app and let me know if you have any further problems.

Odd. The currently available version – the one at http://www.cityofplayers.com/files/My_Code/CoH_Modder.zip – is what isn't working. As in, I've just re-downloaded and the files have the same timestamp (2020-08-20 05:07) and SHA1 and everything. Replaced anyhow, still having the same troubles.

 

1 minute ago, The Philotic Knight said:

@ElectricKeet also, what mod was that? If one got corrupted on the server due the bugs, I'll probably have to fix it manually.

Er... all of the ones I tried? Well, the ones that match the pattern above. For example, "Neutral Character Selection and Creation Backgrounds" has the doubled filenames, but "Double Loud Glowie" works properly because the Mod.Info has a destination path without the filename.

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Okay @ElectricKeet try downloading a fresh copy of the app. I think I have the bug fixed to work whether the user chose the destination path as just the directory, or included the filename in it. So I hope it works either way *crosses fingers*. Let me know. It worked when I tried it on a few mods.

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