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Author Topic: Descent 2 Workshop.. Yet another Descent II editor thing I made  (Read 423 times)

Offline SaladBadger

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Descent 2 Workshop.. Yet another Descent II editor thing I made
« on: January 23, 2021, 06:43:43 PM »
god is my first post on this subject really from 2012 what the crap is wrong with me

So last year, I resurrected the Descent 2 Workshop project on a whim, because I was sick of there being no usable tools for this crusty old game. Descent 2 Workshop strives to be a hopefully relatively user friendly utility that can edit all the major Descent 2 data formats. Currently it can edit HAMs, HXMs, and V-HAMs for editing gameplay data, with significantly less limits than older tools like RBotEdit or HAXMEDIT. Here's some samples of what that looks like:


All parts of the file are fully editable to allow transforming Descent as much as desired. The editor also incorporates a BSP tool for polymodels, so that you don't need to use the crusty cob2pm if you want software compatible models anymore. This still needs some tweaking and potential bugfixing though, as the BSP trees end up larger than I desire.

In addition, it's also possible to construct and edit new HOG files, PIG files, POG files, and eventually S11/S22 files are on the table, allowing complete replacement or addition of all the game's assets.

For modeling, I've chosen to do away with limited and frustrating specific-made modeling tools like Polytron and instead upgrade my old blender script, allowing the full power of a normal modeler's features. Gone are the days of a two step process needed to make models (caused by my inability to understand python...), POF files can now be exported directly from blender with a special addon. Models can be made, textured, animated, and gun points set in Blender, and then imported directly into your project. Here's a sample of a new model:



I don't have a timeframe for when I can get a 1.0 release out, but the software is currently usable, I've given beta builds to many. I'm hoping to get it done at some point in the next many weeks, but I'm always juggling a million projects so I'm not reliable enough... In any case, if anyone's interested, I can provide beta builds that should hopefully work enough to allow for serious editing.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2021, 07:13:50 PM by InsanityBringer »

Offline SaladBadger

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Re: Descent 2 Workshop.. Yet another Descent II editor thing I made
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2021, 06:59:47 PM »
Oh oops, I meant to include this all in my first post but forgot about it.

Anyways, this is all open source and available at my github if you want to check out the progress.

At the core of this project is a new project. Formed by Sirius with the intention of powering a newer version of the Descent level editor DLE, and with contributions from him, Parabolicus, and I, is LibDescent

LibDescent is a powerful Descent data file library made for the .NET runtime. It handles nearly every asset form in use by Descent, from data files to HOG files to level files for both Descent 1 and 2 to things like fonts and even HMP files in great detail! LibDescent is broken into two sub-libraries, LibDescent.Data which allows for simple reading and writing of data. This can be used by anything from editors to even new implementations of the game (which may or may not be in the pipeline...), and LibDescent.Edit, which provides helper classes specifically for Descent 2 Workshop and DLE.NET, and may be of use to other projects.

As a sample/useful utility, Parabolicus has created a new Descent HMP converter which can run on modern systems, cross-platform, potentially with more control over the conversion process compared to older utilities.

Offline Scyphi

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Re: Descent 2 Workshop.. Yet another Descent II editor thing I made
« Reply #2 on: January 24, 2021, 08:56:45 AM »
Well, this all looks very promising! I've long been thinking to myself that we needed a new generation of Descent editing tools, and this looks like it'll deliver.  :D

Now if only D3 could get a new generation of editing tools...but I suppose that's a whole other ball of wax. ::)
"I thought I had a great idea, but it never really took off. In fact, it didn't even get on the runway. I guess you could say it exploded in the hanger." -Calvin and Hobbes
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Offline Matthew

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Re: Descent 2 Workshop.. Yet another Descent II editor thing I made
« Reply #3 on: January 25, 2021, 07:05:46 AM »
Well this came out of nowhere! Good stuff!

Offline SaladBadger

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Re: Descent 2 Workshop.. Yet another Descent II editor thing I made
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2021, 12:32:00 PM »
I've spent some time looking at Descent 3. The game interests me less, and it does occupy a somewhat annoying part of time where games were really technically messy. Any particular technical thing that bugs me about Descent 3, like limited resolution options, menus changing resolution, dynamic link libraries for scripting, and so on are things I can't really fault Outrage for directly, because that's just how games were made at the time, but they make playing the game kind of annoying on modern systems. I wish the game would get a source release so it would be possible to improve these things.

But nonetheless, I have put some effort and trying to figure out the tablefile format and the model format among other things:

Offline SaladBadger

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Re: Descent 2 Workshop.. Yet another Descent II editor thing I made
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2021, 03:30:01 PM »
Little update: I got the first pass of sound importing going, and while it still needs improvements, including the ability to open other file formats, this means that at this point, it's now possible to modify the contents of every major Descent data file. Beta soon? Agh, I sure hope so. I really want to spare the remaining Descent modding community from crusty and annoying old tools like DTX and Descent Manager.

It would have come a lot sooner, but the Descent 3 tangent has gotten me investing some time in a certain big project for Descent 3 that, I don't want to get expectations raised for since I don't know if it will pan out, but if it works out, could be very beneficial for players...

Offline Sapphire Wolf

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Re: Descent 2 Workshop.. Yet another Descent II editor thing I made
« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2021, 07:26:23 PM »
yeah I'm getting tired of using winxp via VM to use polytron (and polytron overall) and using Descent Manager, which oddly enough still works on Windows 10.  I'm just wanted to go back to Descent modding on modern OS's.  But I'll be patient
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Offline Hunter

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Re: Descent 2 Workshop.. Yet another Descent II editor thing I made
« Reply #7 on: March 21, 2021, 03:47:06 AM »
Of all the D3 projects I worked on in recent years, having been away for like a decade, I had to do all of them using an XP VM. D3 editing tools work flawlessly there. I wouldn't even bother trying to get anything working on newer versions. Even on Win7 things start falling apart.

You might want to look toward the Linux 64-bit port (released in 2019) for a more up-to-date D3. The thing is an abandoned BETA technically, and it lacks any new features other than being 64-bit, runs natively on Linux and supports widescreen (multiplayer is not supported). But you could probably work more from there... you'd just need Kevin to agree and share those assets..  :P
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