[community project] Elf race [released]

By on September 15, 2010 9:29:24 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Heavenfall

Join Date 07/2008
+436

 

This mod has been released, see

http://forums.elementalgame.com/398661

 

This thread is the result of an idea I've been tossing around lately. This run is an experiment - either people will show interest, or the project will wither and die.

 

TL;DR: We need your help to design Elven city tiles.

 

A selection of a few of the completed buildings:

 

Right now, we have a few modders doing a lot of work on big projects. Joining a project can feel like a big commitment. The individual modder can sometimes feel that he wants to do something, but don't really have the time to see a project to the finish line. He wants to contribute, but not sign away his soul. Enter the community project. Your participation and contributions are just as much as you want them to be. A community project is many modders doing small parts to form a greater whole. The intention is to push content to the end-user as soon as possible. Rather than a few modders doing work on mods over many months, a community project is intended to reach maturity within a week or two. Once the project is done, the mod becomes public property and anyone can use it in the future for anything they want to.

For the first community project, I thought we'd put an elf race in this fantasy game. More precisely, I thought we'd put something that LOOKS like elves in the game.


General outline for mod to meet release conditions:

 

- Elves play as Kingdom with Kingdom technology and Kingdom magic (no custom technology or magic planned at this stage). This will ensure that the mod stays viable after the community project is finished.

- Elves have unique unit textures - they will look like elves ( http://i304.photobucket.com/albums/nn195/summersong/Elemental/Gaediila_0_2106408875-24.png )

- Elves live in Elf cities. In this case, they are Sylvan or Wood elves, so city tiles should look like they were built inside a forest. See more info below. (examples: http://forums.elementalgame.com/396593 )

- Elves ride Elf mounts (a larger variety of horses, including white ones).

- Elves wield elf bows. They have kingdom stats, but look elven.

- (Additional outline, not required for release): Elves wield elf melee weapons. They have kingdom stats, but look elven.

- (Additional outline, not required for release): Elves wield elven armor and elven shields. They have kingdom stats, but look elven.

 


 

Nit-picking stuff: For this community project, I will be the moderator. Translated to reality, that means that if a situation appears where the community is split between two choices, I choose one. It also falls on me to make sure that tasks are not duplicated (update this thread), and that the project stays usable after the game is patched. In extreme cases, I may turn down contributions if they lack quality.


 

If you are interested in helping out, post in the thread what you intend to contribute with. You can also e-mail me at outelf@gmail.com

 

Required Tasks

Red means the task has not been assigned

Orange means the task has been assigned, and you should preferably choose something else to contribute with

Green means the task has been completed (and the files have reached me)

Note: You don't need my permission to start working on a tile. This is just so that if you want to take your time working on something, you can reserve that task so noone can steal it from under your feet.


 

XML framework (Heavenfall with ideas from Wintersong). The mod requires an XML framework to link everything together. Specifically, the framework should include a non-invasive way to link the buildings together, a raceconfig, and a racetype so that custom factions may use everything.


 

Unit Textures (Raven X). Both female and male elven skins need to be made, I strongly suggest that you adopt the skins from fallen units, as they fit the models with pointy ears. In particular eyes, eyebrows and mouths need to be cleared up to appear less goth.

 


 

Bow models (3dgrunge) 

 


 

Melee Weapon Models. In this area, anything is welcome.

(3dgrunge)

 


Extra assets:

New colours for apple trees and swamp trees

Example of completed buildings: http://img21.imageshack.us/img21/5113/elemental1285328784.jpg

City tiles. By far the largest part of the mod, and the part where we will need the most contributions. There is a HUGE freedom here for contributors to put their own flavour on buildings, but keep in mind that the theme you go by will not be reflected in all the other buildings.

There are two key words that I want to stress here. First, the elves live in the WOOD. That means their city should look like it could be part of a forest - elves are one with the forest, and all that. No cleared fields, no huge arenas for training. And please, try to mix the trees you use - both leaf trees and pine trees. Secondly, the elves live in a CITY. They do NOT live in tents, or miniscule huts on top of large trees. Buildings are absolutely okay.

I strongly recommend that you do NOT use a ground decal, for example something that makes the ground look beige or dusty. These decals have significant clipping issues in game, and frankly look off in a forest city.

I strongly suggest that you use LESS than thirty models in total. This is to make sure that the city can be viewed like any other city. In this area, I will be rather strict and may edit buildings.

Buildings MUST be built on the right amount of tiles. If a building requires 1 tile, it MUST use 1x1. If it requires 4 tiles, it MUST use the 2x2 format. Any building that doesn't follow this rule will be instantly rejected.

I must also insist that you provide TWO tiles for each building. The game can use a different tile while building something. I recommend that you first construct the final building and save. Then load, and remove some parts, add workers and ropes and whatnot, and save as something else.

I strongly suggest that you use the following colours when using the tile editor

While the colours may change for release, they will not change a lot.

 

City Cores (all are 4 tiles!):
Being Built (oddrheia)
Level 1 (oddrheia)
Level 2 (oddrheia)
Level 3 (oddrheia)
Level 4 (oddrheia)
Level 5 (oddrheia)


Regular Buildings:
Workshop (Heavenfall)
Watchtower (Jharii)
Study (Jharii)
Arcane Laboratory (Jharii)
Merchant (Novaburst)
Hut (crystlshake)
House (Kalin)
Barracks (Kalin)
Command post (Kalin)
War College (Kalin)
Market (Kalin)
School (4 tiles!) (jshores)
University (4 tiles!) (John_Hughes)
Trade Center (Kalin)
Bazaar (4 tiles!) (Kalin)
Pub (HooblaDan)
Inn (Kalin)
Great Theatre (oddrheia)
Town Hall (Heavenfall)
Palace (4 tiles!) (oddrheia)
Irrigation System (Heavenfall)
Guild Tribunal (Kalin)
Mining Guild (Kalin)
Smelter (oddrheia)
Blacksmith (oddrheia)
Farming Guild (crystlshake)
Granary (crystlshake)
Great Mill (4 tiles!) (oddrheia)
Construction Yard (Heavenfall)
Temple of Essence (oddrheia)
Monastery (Heavenfall)
Tower of Ereog (fairwater)
Abbey of Izil (4 tiles!) (oddrheia)
Missionary Hall (John_Hughes) 
Embassy (oddrheia)

Harbor (crystlshake)

Super-unique buildings
Mint of Ruvenna (4 tiles!) (oddrheia)
Hosten's Library (4 tiles!) (John_Hughes)
 
Wall buildings (the improvement built to make walls - these automatically upgrade)
Hedge Wall (oddrheia)
Fort (oddrheia)
Fortress (oddrheia)

City walls
Citywalls (level 0) (Heavenfall)
CityWalls_Hedge (level 1) (Heavenfall)
CityWalls_picket (level 2) (Heavenfall)
CityWalls_Advanced (level 3) (Heavenfall)

Shards (all these are 4 tiles):
Fire Shard (Kalin)
Water Shard (Djohaal)
Earth Shard (Djohaal)
Air Shard (Djohaal)

World Resources (all these are 4 tiles):
Iron Mine (John_Hughes)
Ventri Mine (John_Hughes)
Stone Quarry (John_Hughes)
Clay Quarry (John_Hughes)
Marble Quarry (Heavenfall)
Farm (Heavenfall)
Wheat Farm (crystlshake)
Apiary  (crystlshake)
Orchard (crystlshake)
Stable (crystlshake)
Crystal Foundry (Kalin)
Scenic View (oddrheia)
Refugee Camp (John_Hughes)
Oasis (John_Hughes)
Gold Mine (Heavenfall)
Lost Library (oddrheia)
Ancient Temple (oddrheia)
Lumbermill (be gentle!) (John_Hughes)

Diplomacy buildings
Shrill (Kalin)
Drath (Heavenfall)
Dragon (oddrheia)
Spider (oddrheia)

Contributions are mailed to outelf@gmail.com or uploaded and linked here in this thread.

 

 

 

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September 15, 2010 9:43:37 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Anyone want an elven watchtower?  RAR FILE.

Under construction:

Built:

 

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September 15, 2010 9:46:58 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I can modify that house I built to have the scheme you want...if you are interested

 

 

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September 15, 2010 9:50:34 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

_We_ are.

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September 15, 2010 10:02:21 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Well I modified the hous a little bit:

 

 

 

what do you think?

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September 15, 2010 10:17:40 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Looks great to me.

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September 15, 2010 10:18:56 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Heh was goin for the whole bernstien bears look...would make a nice inn or somethin.

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September 15, 2010 10:37:03 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

 

Farm

Rune_74 I put you down for the inn, then.

I think I'll try to add some more tree models tomorrow, we're going to run out very quickly.

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September 15, 2010 11:03:44 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Put me down for the school.

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September 15, 2010 11:35:40 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Why is the elven faction using all the Altar-related buildings and techs? Not nit-picking, but curious why so much work would be put in to identify a new faction and then subject it to an already-designed tree.

 

Things like faction-specific resources, buildings and even quests could really spark the whole community project into different branches. Dark elves, anyone? Or even Raven's bone-chilling skeletons/undead faction.

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September 16, 2010 12:10:54 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I will work on the market and the pub.

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September 16, 2010 12:25:22 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Elves like to read.  Here is a STUDY.

Under construction:

Ready to learn:

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September 16, 2010 2:22:08 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I'll do arcane laboratory if you'll have me . Have been  tinkering with forest-crystally thing in the editor recently. Should fit in

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September 16, 2010 2:44:58 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Awesome stuff and great attitude, HeavenFall.

I love the idea of community projects with "moderators". You have me convinced, it's the way to go. And frankly, I'm done "investing" my hopes in grand solo-projects that never see the light of day (I've seen my good share of such mods wither and die of exhaustion). This is the approach we, as players, really need. I mean, modders are free to chase their dreams, but in the meantime it's projects like this that I intend to follow and see develop.

Karma to you  

On a side note, let me understand: are you saying that not even modding tools have been released in a finished state?

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September 16, 2010 2:56:22 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Nice work! I really like the farm and the study (the houses not so much...)

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September 16, 2010 3:26:09 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Hrm. Alright. Here is the first run of an Elven Pub. I'm not sure of what counts into our model total that needs to be under 30. If it's everything that I put down, I'm going to have to try to reduce the heck out of this thing. The people alone total 11. I'm looking for feedback on what you think could improve or even needs to be removed, etc. so that I can have a finished completed pub tile and then reduce from there for the construction tile.

Screenshots from 4 different angle, same distances:

I tried to stick with what I saw of the house model we have and the farm model. Built into what surrounds it (in this case, rock and tree), hopefully the right color scheme, and relatively busy since that's the idea we have of fantasy pubs. What do you think?

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September 16, 2010 4:51:32 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

@jshores put you down for school

@HooblaDan put you down for pub and market. Yes, elemental has an internal screenshot thingy. They end up in user/*username/My Documents/My Games/Elemental/Screenshot

@Jharii do you think you could fill out the study a bit? Maybe with benches or things. I'm afraid if we don't use the full tile it will look odd when put together with other tiles.

@oddrheia I put you down for arcane laboratory

@i3elial It's because of the scope of the project. A unique tech tree is better handled by a few dedicated modders, instead of many just looking to chip in. It needs a vision for balance, and the ambition to keep it updated for the patches ahead. If I said a tech tree was to be included in a similar manner, the work would still be done by just a few people, and then a lot of other people would argue to their deaths about everything in it. This way, the project is effectively a library for any future modder to use. Just hook up to your custom tech tree and you're good to go.

Today I'll be going through the already existing kingdom tiles and see if they're acceptable as elven in their original design. Obviously a new tile is always preferable, but some tiles would be marked as a new colour to designate that they can be replaced, but doesn't necessarily have to be.

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September 16, 2010 5:05:13 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting mastroego,

On a side note, let me understand: are you saying that not even modding tools have been released in a finished state?

The tile editor, the emitter editor and the map editor are pretty finished, in my book. Everything else is just xml. What I mean by no depth is that the only tools we have available are the tags and attributes already used by Stardock. So for example we can't make a new spell that boosts the defensive capability of the caster while draining the attack of the target, because there's no such spell. And we can't make buildings cast spells, because the game isn't coded that way. We can add terrain types, but not environment types. We can add races, but not whole factions (like empire/kingdom). We can add combat abilities, but we can't add passive abilities, nor can we add abilities useable on the strategical map.

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September 16, 2010 5:08:37 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Thanks, Heaven. I figured it out by searching for a manual in the program folder and looking at the hotkeys section, and from there it's not hard to figure out that they'll end up in mydocs. First run of the Elven Pub I'll be doing is above. Need feedback!

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September 16, 2010 5:08:44 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

@HooblaDan, I like the front, but the back of the building looks pretty empty. Maybe add some rock formations, or flowers, or a hedge wall, or a path around the inn. Generally, extra pedestrians don't count towards the limit because they disappear when you zoom out anyway.

Edit: You might want to consider adding an extra smaller building connected to the in, as a stable or barn.

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September 16, 2010 5:14:00 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Alright, I'll work on the back. As far as adding a stable, at first I had one and a few horses hanging around, but I'm not really sure of what the difference between the Pub and the Inn would then be. Trying to make sure I don't step into Inn territory. I'll try it out and get that up here.

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September 16, 2010 6:50:32 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Here's v2. Added a small natural stable-type area to the back and a guarded side door. Had to take out a few tiny details (such as the tiny horse statue on the front rock and flowers) to try to cut down to the 30 limit but it's still floating at around 45 (NOT counting npcs) so if you guys like it then I'll start trying to find ways to cut down to standard. Any feedback is appreciated.

I'm heading to bed and off to Dland later today so I'll pick work back up on Friday.

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September 16, 2010 7:03:07 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

FYI, a little tip for those providing screenshots...

Try to use an image editor and crop them up in a square around the tile and resize them to 512x512.  Then they can be used as medallions.

Also, I have been scaling the size of my elves DOWN on the scale 8 clicks (8 mousewheel clicks downward).  I don't know if anyone else has been scaling your population or not, but if so, what scale have you been using?  Giant elves vs. tiny elves would be kind of odd looking. 

@Jharii do you think you could fill out the study a bit? Maybe with benches or things. I'm afraid if we don't use the full tile it will look odd when put together with other tiles.

I'll probably go through and spruce up both the watchtower and the study, so yes.

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September 16, 2010 7:03:55 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Looks good to me. I will almost certainly change the colours of the house, but that will be on a "global" scale so no need for you to change anything.

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September 16, 2010 7:45:47 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Here are some extra trees

http://www.mediafire.com/?pfn013qdpu3p9cp (edit: more trees including these: http://www.mediafire.com/?aur7am2hnfwdlad )

Extract straight into your install dir

Front row is standard swamp trees, second row is the "new" trees

I'll do another pack later today with the apple trees in darker colours

I also went through all the current kingdom tiles (improvements and resource buildings), but none were what I would consider "elvish". The irrigation system improvement should be easily converted to elven (only slight touch-up and remove stone fences), and the farming guild improvement should be a straightforward conversion as well.

 

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September 16, 2010 8:44:35 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

http://www.mediafire.com/?aur7am2hnfwdlad

Same as above, just extract into install dir.

First row is standard apple trees, second row new apple trees, third row is just reference.

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