A few ways to improve the scenario editor

I like your suggestions and will be adding them to the list! I’d oppose combining the two conditions Object Visible/Object Not Visible, though, because it would break the backwards compatibility with older maps that use both conditions, and there’s a ton of them. Although, if DE automatically turned those older “Object Not Visible” conditions into the new “Object Visible” with the inverse chechbox checked, so that older maps still work as intended, we could both have our cake and eat it.

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I’m not suggesting removing the existing triggers, It’d make much more sense to just hide the Not Visible condition from the trigger list, so it stays in the game for compatibility’s sake, but when used in the editor you only have the combined option.

Alright, that makes sense. I guess the devil’s in the details here; you could have the condition hidden for new scenarios, but still visible in the conditions list for older scenarios that already use it. You could even have a line in the effect description saying: “This is a legacy Condition from an older version of the game. To create the same effect in a new scenario, use the ‘Object Visible’ condition and tick the ‘Inversion’ box.”

I’d also like to point out;

There’s a “Khan” unit that should be a Hero.

Also, it should be noted that “Farmer” and various other “villager job units” appear in the trigger effect’s unit list when using “Modify Attribute”, but this Farmer is only the Male farmer, we have no option to select the Female farmer without modding the data to reveal her, which with 2DE is really hit-or-miss if it will actually reveal the unit properly.

Edit: I also noticed that the Condition “Accumulate Attribute” really should say “Accumulate Resource”.

Some new additions:

Objects:

  • Perhaps a Camel Caravan unit could be added, basically a Flaming Camel minues the flame.

  • The “Khan” unit is probably better suited to be a Hero unit, rather than a regular soldier.

Triggers:

  • It should be noted that “Farmer” and various other “villager job units” appear in the trigger effect’s unit list when using “Modify Attribute”, but this Farmer is only the Male farmer, we have no option to select the Female farmer without modding the data to reveal her, which with 2DE is really hit-or-miss if it will actually reveal the unit properly.

Suggestions:

  • The ability to toggle unit visibility in FOW through modify attribute would be handy.
  • It might be a good idea to combine the “Object Visible”/“Object Not Visible” conditions into a single condition with an “Inverse” checkbox. Importantly, though, the old “Object Not Visible” condition would need to remain, perhaps as a hidden condition, to make sure not to break backwards compatibility with older scenarios that utilize the old condition.
  • Perhaps the condition “Accumulate Attribute” could be renamed “Accumulate Resource” to more accurately reflect what it does.
  • A new “Change Terrain” effect, with a selectable area.
  • A “Map Copy” effect, with a selectable area and a target area to match.
  • A “Night” colour mood. Basically the same look as FOW. A nice (but perhaps very labour intensive) feature here would be for lights in building windows, Tarkan torches etc. to still emit light, but nothing else
  • An "Upgrade Unit "effect, similar to the one in the UserPatch

Various:

  • The mapshot feature (CTRL+F12), removed since HD, should be reintroduced.
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Can we have a way to set a players starting resources to infinite or random?

I’d also like to point out that 2DE is dangerous to use with any map that contains certain hidden units that used to have graphics, but now do not, such as Berserk, Heavy Swordsman, OMTBO, STRBO, etc etc.

Modify Attribute with Projectile Unit just straight up doesn’t work. it does something weird to the ID number and it doesn’t correlate to the actual projectile ID.

I’ve also worked out how to make any unit visible in the Editor, and it requires each unit having a string ID. Why do internal names no longer work for the editor?

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Some new additions, many courtesy of amuralshoq’s thread: The new scenario editor has many changes that broke old Maps from AOE 2 HD

Objects:

  • Placing a gate on top of Broken Bridge B Bottom will result in the gate opening if its an ally bridge. Not sure how far this extends to other bridge pieces.

Triggers:

  • Changing projectiles: If I take an Archer that has Projectile 363 and add 2 to this value it should take me to Projectile 365 that skirmishers use, I actually get a Town Center foundation being popped out…

  • Giving units or buildings the effect “Damage Object” with negative values. This should be just like AOE 2 HD, at the moment on AOE 2 DE this has no effect on the units, buildings. Tell me why is this needed? Some maps use this trick to give units or buildings a temporarily HP which means if you give for example a Villager a Damage object value of -100, the Villager will have 40 HP and (100 HP) that is temporarily, and if an enemy damage this Villager for 100 damage the max HP of the Villager will still be 40 HP so you can’t heal this villager up to 140 HP because this trick makes the unit have a temporary HP.

  • A new change that has been introduced in AOE 2 DE where you can’t give gaia objects like Trees HP, why do we need HP for Trees? So you can give villagers the ability to get more Wood from certain trees or gold or whatever.

  • Not new to DE, but why are units, buildings HP limited to only 32xxx HP? And what is even more annoying for map makers is that when units, buildings reach that point of HP they will just die as they explode from having too much HP.

  • Heal Object can heal units but it will make units unable to have armor, attack power, and range technologies like Fletching, Bodkin Arrow, Padded Archer Armor, scale mail amor Scale Mail Armor etc…

  • Object Visible: If the unit/building set as visible object, is still visible through fog of war, it will trigger the condition as well.

Backwards compatibility:

  • A lot of object IDs have been changed around: battering rams have been replaced with a new version, jungle trees now have way more rotations, and so on. It would be great if there was a “Legacy Import” tool, or just a pop-up window when opening an older file in the editor, so that all of these inconsistencies could be fixed automatically. E.g. if the tool/editor detects a battering ram with the old ID, it changes it to one with the new ID (same goes for when an old object is listed in the triggers and effects), if a tree is detected that has since been gives more rotations, it tracks the specific rotations and changes them to match with their new corresponding rotations. So if a Jungle Tree has rotation 3 in the original, and that same graphic is now rotation 7, the editor detects this and updates it accordingly, changing around IDs and rotations to keep the look and functionality of the older map intact.

Various:

  • To be able to unhide a unit in the editor, it requires a unique string ID for that object. Previously an internal name was sufficient. Why make it harder for designers to unhide useful editor objects?

  • The new civilizations are nice addition but, when you want to import an old Map to AOE 2 DE, you should have an option in the Lobby where you could remove the ability to pick any of the new Civilizations because there are some Maps that can have a Hero for each different civilizations, and when you pick a civilization that is not from the older AOE 2 versions, you will not have a hero spawned at all.

  • When I load an old Map from AOE 2 with .scx and try to save the map using “Save as”, the game will crash.

  • Sometimes when I delete Triggers in a fast sequence the game will crash (I am editing an old .scx map).

  • When importing and playing an older campaign file, the instructions screen was missing, as was the victory/defeat screens. The game went from the Custom Campaign selection straight to gameplay, and then on ending straight to the achievements screen. This occurred for a brand new custom DE campaign and scenario as well, although the scenario did properly give me a defeat screen.

Suggestions:

  • Can we have a way to set a players starting resources to infinite or random?

  • The new addition for the objective being always-on screen is nice but would be even better if we could give each Player a custom objective unlike everyone having the same exact objective, we could use this to teach people how to play a custom scenario for example.

  • A LOS blocker object and/or trigger effect.

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LordBasse, also eye candy like trade goods - furs, honey, weapons, silks, porcelain, tea, lacquer, meat, etc. I have some ported over from other games but am not sure how to incorporate them without the SLP converter for AOE2:DE. PM me and I can share these. :slight_smile:

Two new additions:

  • Certain rotations of the Waterfall crash the game.

  • Change Ownership: Using “Set Area” for a specific type of unit or building does not work, it will always change ownership of all objects in the area, regardless of what object you pick from the list.

I think it would be interesting if they decided to add a trigger to revive a dead unit the way it was before dieing

I would like to see a trigger to allow garrisoning in a unit or building that does not garrison, and another one to give a new type of attack to a unit, E.G. give a melee attack to a king. Of course, that second one would then be weird because you would also want them to have an attack animation, so I can see how that would be a bit of a big change. You could also take away attacks entirely, like just have a war wagon that no longer fires any bolts, effectively turning a military unit into a civilian one.

But I think the first one has plenty of reason to it. In a scenario, maybe you want to garrison a few troops on a war galley or, tying in with the first one, a war wagon (then it just becomes a carriage). You can already garrison inside houses for one civ, so it is not too far of a stretch. You would definitely want to have options for restrictions too, as with TCs and towers only taking in pedestrians, castles not allowing in siege, and transport ships taking all units. It would just be really cool to have a galleon or carrack that was also able to carry troops.

We need more eyecandy and civilisation specific units.

Also, could we get coop scenario editing? It would make the process a lot faster and more fun if two or more people could work together on a scenario. I have a few scenarios I am that I would love input from a friend on.

Will be updating this thread further after Christmas, but I would just like to chime in and say that co-op mode for the scenario editor would be absolutely brilliant, although I realize it is probably a complex project to take on and not at the top of the priority list. Still, it would be awesome!

My last post seems to have been… removed? How come?

Here it is again, anyway:

Having done some proper designing in the editor now, I have come across a number of new issues. I’ve also heard about a number of other bugs that have been reported in this thread. Here are the new additions:

Map tab:

  • There really should not be random grass patches spawning when generating blank maps, as this just forces the designer to spend a bunch of time erasing them to get the blank map that should have been generated to begin with. Having grass patches and such spawn (similar to cacti for Dirt 1) would be okay if there was an option to turn this off, a check box similar to the one in the Terrains tab.

Terrain tab:

  • The Black terrain is not the same shade of black as the off-map black, so the terrain becomes quite noticeable when they are next to each other.
  • Shoreline waves are often not removed when putting land terrains on water, and this only resets after testing the scenario.
  • Terrain placement in general is insanely laggy. I’m using a computer with double the RAM (16 GB) recommended for the game. I have added a video showing how the lag looks in practice:

Units:

  • Is it just me or is the Piece of True Cross relic no longer darker than the regular relic? Having two different shades of relics was quite useful for eye candy in the original game.

Triggers:

  • Often when typing a letter to jump to an effect, it goes straight to the second effect in alphabetical order, rather than to the first one.
  • When using triggers that ask you to select an object (change name, ownership, icon, etc). Sometimes the object isn’t registered as selected. There are some times that one designer had to make several clicks in order to get it registered in the triggers system. It can be avoided by dragging the mouse (creating that box) over the unit. But when there are overlapped units (as buildings) it gets really difficult to select the desired unit.
  • Using “Set Area” for a specific type of unit or building does not work for all effects with this setting. (for example change name, change icon, etc).
  • Sometimes when editing triggers in maps with a lot of then (2000 in one reported case), changes to the effects will be reset as soon as you move on to the next one,
  • Using “gaia objects” icons in the “change unit icon” is not possible. The icon will appear empty during the game.
  • A very old issue which has been around sinc the original version of the game: milita, spearman, knight etc. (all upgrade lines) do nothing when using an effect such as Change Object HP when the current player is in Post-Imperial.

Modding:

  • In the Modding central for the game, Language files (key-string…) really should be loaded with the main mod, so that you don’t have to use a separate mod for it. This is a unnecessary hurdle both for mod maker and downloaders. An old-fashioned zip-file is more practical than this.
  • Adding custom strings: many strings that should work, do not. For example, when adding strings to #51000 and a few above, none of them work. If there is a cut-off number, this should preferably be stated in the -key-string-modded file. Even better, if possible, the cap should be lifted.

Various:

  • Hovering over a button in the editor (or in game) shouldn’t select it, it breaks the quick button taps to get out of the game (F10+enter+enter) and more.
  • This goes for both the Units tab and the Terrain tab: when clicking Up or Down to move in the object/terrain list, this simultaneously moves a select box through the editor sub menus. Sometimes this results in the game suddenly switching to another tab. This is very annoying, and it can potentially be very damaging, if for example the game decides to jump to the “Map” tab and with a misplaced click you end up generating a new, blank map over your hours of work… An example of what I mean:

Suggestions:

  • It would be really cool to be able to use variables within other effects. For example, if one could use variables to record a unit’s HP and attack, and then use the variables to create an identical unit when the first one dies.
  • Revive unit effect.
  • Co-op mode for the editor! Obviously a long shot because of the amount of work I assume this would require, but it would be awesome and open up loads of new possibilites - and it would be extremely fun.
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You know, it would also be really nice if we were not restricted on units in different ages. Why would I not want to be able to place a fortified gate in Castle age, or a militia in Imperial? In a scenario, we are doing all sorts of strange things, and this would just make it all the easier.

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Some new issues I have found after trying to design a proper map:

  • Roads no longer make straight lines when drawn vertically or horizontally.
  • There appear to be no graphics at all for OMTBO and STRBO, two often used beta units.
  • When painting terrain close to the edge of the screen, it is extremely easy to just glide across the map and ruin previously designed bits.
  • Bridges now have giant hitboxes, meaning you cannot place map revs under them with effects easily anymore.
  • Perhaps there could a check box when working with triggers that says “Select Terrain Only”, or something to this effect, which allows the “select location” to completely disregard any object that is the way? I cannot stress enough how useful this would be.
  • The scenario instrucions do not appear when turning a scenario into a campaign and attempting to play it.
  • The very sharp colours of Road Fungus makes it stand out except in very special circumstances, in a way it never did in CD/HD. Perhaps at least the layered mode of this terrain could be a more mellow version, i.e… just road broken with fungi patches as in the original game, for increased flexibility?
  • When using the arrow keys to switch between terrains, the brush size almost always changes size unexpectedly, meaning you have to manually go back and change back the size or risk painting a huge block of grass or something over your carefully crafted design.

Also, I mourn the demise of the Contraption unit.

Contraption unit? Any picture of it?

Fascinating. I’ve never seen it before unfortunately.

I am hoping for the introduction of more types of forage bushes - date palms, olive trees, grape vines and eye candy crops we can place on farms to show crop diversity like wheat, pumpkins, lettuce, watermelons etc…