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Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 7:54 am
by D.U.P.A.
Some guy named Killrogg once asked on THW if anybody would know anything about old wc2 mods. This caught interest to me too, since I didn't know that such old games could be modded too. He managed to find one, but it wasn't one of the best. Does anybody here know anything more about them and where they could be retrieved if they are still on internet?

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 8:39 am
by HelpMe
Never knew those existed. Interesting, I wouldn't mind trying one or two. I have a lot of love for WC2 :D
Sorry I can't help. If I see any around I'll let you know.

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 11:18 am
by IskatuMesk
Pretty much anything can be modded, it all depends on the people who want to mod the games and their skillsets, as well as how much time they're willing to put into them. For example, Diablo 2 was very active for a very long time and to this day huge projects are still getting updated for it. Unfortunately, I don't know much about Warcraft 2. I don't recall the community being terribly huge but I'm sure at least some nature of custom content was done for it.

Unfortunately I am not sure where one would begin looking either, assuming no one else knows. I suppose trawling the deep recesses of google might give some hints, but most of the sites I know of that would have dated to that time period are long dead. If Camelot Systems had anything to do with wc2 at any points that might have given some bread crumbs to start with, but they're long dead/assimilated into the furthest reaches of the abyss, so that trail is pretty cold if it ever had any relevance to begin with.

Wish I could have been of more assistance but this was before my time it seems.

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 4:01 pm
by Bladefist
They existed, I can confirm (now they are disappeared). Also Wowwiki talks about them. Played only Weapons of our warfare, Rituals of rebirth and elfcraft. In the past I've enjoyed using many gfx to create my own conversions :)

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:55 pm
by Taeradun
+1 for the "I don't know any" crowd, but adding to what Mesk said I know that Camsys were involved - I recall the Arsenal II that came with StarDraft could also edit Warcraft II data files for some reason (also that might be why Camelot Systems and Arsenal have the medieval-themed names to begin with? idk)

D.U.P.A. wrote:since I didn't know that such old games could be modded too.
wtf
if anything being old often means they can be easier to mod than more recent stuff (except of course modern titles with built-in modding support or human-readable data files), since older games are a lot simpler and so the data file formats are usually easier to decode

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Mon Dec 12, 2011 12:48 am
by Linaze
Interesting.

http://www.wowwiki.com/Warcraft_II#Util ... onversions

I suppose it wouldn't be completely unfair to say that WarII modding laid the foundation for SC modding?

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Mon Dec 12, 2011 5:30 am
by D.U.P.A.
wtf
if anything being old often means they can be easier to mod than more recent stuff (except of course modern titles with built-in modding support or human-readable data files), since older games are a lot simpler and so the data file formats are usually easier to decode


However I can hardly say those game were designed for modding, thus many things may be hardcoded. They were simpler, but also less tools to help with decoding. Also an important fact, internet wasn't widespread in that age, so less sharing of knowledge (I could be happy if having a computer at that time), most discoveries remained at discoverer's house.

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Mon Dec 12, 2011 10:25 am
by IskatuMesk
A lot of modding relies on reverse engineering. The 1.5 MP mod for Age of Wonders 2, for example, is made entirely possible by reverse engineering. Plugins for BW, including BWAPI, were made possible by reverse engineering, and there's also a huge amount of this in d2 as well. A lot of the mapping-related elements in BW rely on reverse engineering, I believe they are called Extended Unit Deaths or something. iirc, much of wc3 also owes some of the more exotic material to this. Old games definitely have the advantage here as well, because most modern games are extremely poorly programmed and this makes reverse engineering much harder and more time-consuming. People were also typically more willing to put in massive effort into things like that back then, while most have moved away from modding entirely in this day.

Really, there's a lot of dynamics in modding old games that may not be very obvious at first, but they definitely have an advantage.

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Mon Dec 12, 2011 2:41 pm
by Bladefist
I was talking about some gfx conversion....well, those gfx I've mentioned were created by Fronzel, a guy listed on Wowwiki. About Demoncraft, I know for sure it was canceled. Also LOTR conversion....the day Diablo 2 went out

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Mon Dec 12, 2011 4:23 pm
by Lavarinth
Sprites in WC2 were altered the same was as SC.

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Tue Dec 13, 2011 5:57 am
by D.U.P.A.
However I think that sprites are harder to create then models.

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Tue Dec 13, 2011 6:01 am
by Linaze
Says the modeler. :P
I'm pretty sure any spriter would disagree with you.

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Tue Dec 13, 2011 10:01 am
by IskatuMesk
Models are usually required for spriting unless you're doing it the very painful way then, yes, I would have to agree that manually spriting is probably more difficult (at least to get it just perfect). However if you already have the model, turning it into a sprite is (usually) much easier.

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Thu Dec 15, 2011 10:09 am
by D.U.P.A.
Linaze wrote:Says the modeler. :P
I'm pretty sure any spriter would disagree with you.


Yes, but most spriters did spriting their whole life (figuratively), never touching modeling. After all, there are barely any mods with custom sprites, usually custom sprites look out of place or mods with them are just never finished. Most finished mods of sprite based games (wc2, sc, homm, wbc, aoe2, c&c ... ) usually don't feature graphics changes, but rather balancing stuff and some gameplay improvements (although frequently more ruining the game ._.), graphical improvements are usually only maybe in form of some recolors of the sprites. On the other hand, we see a lot graphical changes in model based games, with all new models with new animations, totally different from default ones. Some games have bad support for models, but even editing textures can give a different look (compare mod databases of aoe2 and aoe3), so I still affirm that models made modding easier.

Re: Warcraft 2 mods

Posted: Thu Dec 15, 2011 11:12 am
by IskatuMesk
I think most spriters, especially in the last decade, would be skilled modelers for the reason that almost all sprite-based games after a certain point base their graphics on models, at least for units and such. I'm not sure about Warcraft 2, but Starcraft, both Diablos, and the majority of sprite-based games >1999ish would definitely be doing so. Actually, I can't think of too many newer games that used the old style of drawing sprites. Usually it's very obvious, but good lighting setup and stuff can make all the difference. Even in the instance that a game used drawn sprites you can still just as easily use models to make new ones.

I would blame the lack of custom graphics in the sc community at least on the lack of large mods. There were plenty of maps, and a few handful of small mods, but almost no one had any aspirations to make big projects. Of those that did extremely few were willing to make any nature of custom graphics at all, much less research how the original game's graphics were done. Luckily for me I knew the right people when I started so many years back. While games like wc3 encouraged these skillsets directly they had always been the ideal means of meeting graphical needs for the older games as well, the pipeline was just different.

Image
Image

I would absolutely not recommend manually drawing sprites except for stuff like effects unless you are already very good. It just isn't worth it over how easy and simple it is to turn models into sprites that look really good, usually better than hand drawn, especially in high res. Pretty much anything I can get into 3ds max could be sprited. Terrain, doodads, units, even the effects I made for Armageddon Onslaught originated as Afterburn particles in max.