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Post Thu Apr 12, 2007 1:42 pm

Just to let you all know, I have begun work on the 88 Flak AI Wingmen Project, a stand-alone version of wingmen that is aimed to be compatible with normal Freelancer and most small mods. A tutorial will be included detailing exactly how the wingmen tick, as well as steps on how to integrate them into larger mods.

Sorry about the wait, however most of my time I spend with Freelancer is geared towards my duties with Flak, since it is my mod and all.
This will be released right after 88 Flak 1.27 so I can get some quality testing in before release on TLR - however, when it is complete, I will upload and post it here first, incase you guys want to test it out and give feedback (testing it on various mods would be lovely).

Until next time.

Edited by - fox Unit 01 on 4/12/2007 2:48:26 PM

Post Thu Apr 12, 2007 1:54 pm

sounds good
(unfortunatly it means i could have spend the time doing researches on this feature for other things ^^)

Post Thu Apr 12, 2007 9:46 pm

What exactly do you mean, SWAT_OP-R8R? =P



Well, I have the basic AI Wingmen framework in, and it's pretty much done. The only thing left to do is tweak the spawning and write up tutorials on everything. Yes, those are real wingmen following me through a tradelane (it's the same hack I made for Phoenix RPG's wingmen). If you don't believe me, well... I dunno, I guess you don't have to. =P

Unfortunately, probably the worst thing I've stumbled upon so far is the FLMM scripting limitations - FLMM does find-and-replace operations on a line-by-line basis, so I can't tell it to, say, comment out every "scan_for_cargo" line in faction_prop.ini to make way for the single "scan_for_cargo = commodity_npc_follow, 1" line that wingmen use. This means that I've pretty much given up trying to FLMM script this, instead just putting everything in hard INIs. While this means wingmen won't be compatible with small mods off the getgo, I detailed exactly what I did in a folder-by-folder tutorial, so the changes will take at most an hour of your time to implement into a mod - it really is pretty easy, and the method I'm using now bypasses all that messy system configuration. In Flak, there's a seperate encounter added to every patrol path area, which means that I can directly control how many wingmen squads can be out at once; this method merely tacks on an extra encounter to the existing patrol path encounters, which accomplishes the same thing in practice. Probably the worst thing I've encountered so far is that it can take a while to encounter a hirable wingman squad; in Flak, they're set up to spawn first in the que, and then not much later, which means you'll usually only see them when you launch (which is good, that's all you need) - this is impossible to do without mass system modding, however.

And blah blah blah. Wow, I get on a roll sometimes. XD

Edited by - fox Unit 01 on 4/12/2007 10:46:37 PM

Post Fri Apr 13, 2007 8:55 pm

What kind of DLL/EXE hacks are you doing? It may be possible to offer a better solution.

Post Sat Apr 14, 2007 3:55 am

i doubt that dll editing is needed

Post Sat Apr 14, 2007 4:15 am

ohhhhhhh....that is soooo disgusting...LOL

I like it.

Post Sat Apr 14, 2007 10:07 am

The only DLL hacks I'm using that are related to the wingmen are in content.dll - specifially, I change a line reading "DirectiveTrailOp" to "DirectiveFollowOp" (this replaces any possible 'trail' behavior with 'follow' behavior, allowing tradelane usage - also, any AI pursuing you will, in theory , use a tradelane to chase you, if the tradelane is viable, as wingmen who are too far away will use a tradelane to reach you). Also, I replaced "gcs_scan_orderdrop" with "rms_friendlyarrivel" - that should be self-explainatory.

If any of you are itching to work with this a little more, I should have the little wingmen mod done by the end of the weekend; everything needed for vanilla FL wingmen code-wise is done, and the only thing I need to do is write up the folder-by-folder tutorials explaining what does what.

Finally, Louva-Deus, I think you long ago mentioned that someone had a different approach to wingmen, however I haven't been able to find anything of the sort. Although cargo-scan-operated wingmen accomplish the task (and quite well I might add), tossing cargo-scanning is a bummer, and it'd be nice to have an alternative method. Any ideas?

Post Sat Apr 14, 2007 11:30 am

Sure thing. You can join the =EOA= and we can work on a plugin for this and a few other ideas I have in mind.

Post Wed Apr 18, 2007 12:04 pm

If anyone's curious as to the progress of the wingmen project, take a look at this thread - in a nutshell, I had a registry corruption, which forced a re-install of Windows (I needed it anyways, I'd gone through 2 motherboards on the same install, which left it a little flaky). This does not mean, however, that the Wingmen Project is gone - in fact, with the exception of the script.xml file (I don't know why), the rest of the project is fully intact and ready to rock. I'll update this thread when I get everything back together again.

And Louva-Deus, when I have a second, I'll be sure to hop on the IRC channel and harass you guys. ;P

Edited by - fox Unit 01 on 4/18/2007 1:06:09 PM

Post Thu May 24, 2007 6:16 pm

Whoo, sure fun to resurrect this from the grave; some people have asked about this, so I figured I'd give a status update at the expense of topic space. ;P

I haven't worked on Freelancer stuff much in general, however the wingmen project pretty much is done. The only thing not done is writing up the ladder half of the tutorials, however even now they at least contain what was changed.

I could be evil and release this bundled with my mod 88 Flak, and force you all to download the entire thing just to get at what you really want, however I'll probably release this when I get around to writing the rest of the tutorials I mentioned above. (which should be in a short while; I don't want to give a date because I probably won't meet it lol)

Post Fri May 25, 2007 3:31 am

Hey fox, looks like great work so far! I cant wait to see it when you are done *hats off*.

Post Tue Aug 14, 2007 7:18 am

I know this topic is old, but how is the tutorial going?

Post Tue Aug 14, 2007 7:52 pm

To be quite honest, it kinda stopped, and it's completely my bad.
I did some final stability-checks one day after re-writing the corrupted script.xml code (options script to configure amount of wingmen, and which DLL - 1.0 or 1.1 - to use), so that the only thing on the to-do list was literally write the tutorials explaining the new encounter, faction_prop, and npcship entries - that's it, and I just kept putting it off.

I apologize for being so lazy with this, folks. I can't really say I have any excuse, and although I broke my previous promise of getting this out in a timely manner, I'll do my best to have this fully completed by the end of the week.

Post Wed Aug 22, 2007 6:16 am

Fox unit 01,

The DirectiveTrailOp converted to DirectiveFollowOp. How is it done in the content.dll?

From what I gather, it seems the dll file has to be decompiled into an ASM listing?

Then after it is decompiled you make necessary adjustments to the decoded dll file in the .asm file which can be opened by notepad I am quite sure, then use a vb application to rebuild the library file again?

Sorry if I am unclear, because I very interested in this work after I have just put out the first tutorial of .utf voice modification.

I basically decompiled the content.dll and it came up with an .asm file that can be opened easily with notepad ( I am sure because I have done it ) And it was what you had said, there was directivetrailop and directivefollowop contained in it!

At the moment, the strings are bundled with funny looking symbols when I look at the .asm file.

Fox unit 01 am I on the correct path of changing it? I have already taken your previous steps into consideration and everything is a beauty. The ships follow anytime but the only thing left is the tradelane following. I will be delighted if I can get it to work so thus the npc ships will follow me through a tradelane.

I will greatly appreciate your reply

Post Wed Aug 22, 2007 7:57 pm

Actually, I just Hex-edited Content.dll, but not in the normal sense. Even when compiled, there's a lot of text-based strings (looks sorta like this) - I literally changed DirectiveTrailOp to DirectiveFollowOp, no de-compiling needed. That was the first and only form of hex-editing I ever did until Dev came along with his Limit Breaking techniques.

As for the tradelanes, using DirectiveFollowOp should have your wing tradelane with you automatically, no further modifications needed. Not sure what went wrong, however I'm finishing up with the wingmen project tonight. I'm gonna play around with it to make sure everything is working as it should, write up a readme, and then upload it - reading through this should be able to solve any problems you could be having, assuming my Tutorials don't turn out to be rubbish. XD

Edited by - fox Unit 01 on 8/22/2007 8:57:18 PM
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