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Older versions archive part 5: Shadow Thieves


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#1 Longinus

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Posted 13 March 2003 - 10:16 AM

Note: This topic has been archived and locked. Any further discussion should go into the new threads.


Are you considering any Shadow Thief improvements? Gaelen really could do with a few bodyguards; same with his merchant friend on the top floor who doesn't wield his weapon.

I'd just love a few elite Shadow Thieves to attack the player once you side against them. You could give them all black Shadow Thief studded leather armour. The dialogue wouldn't need to be long or complex. Just something like: "Crossing us was your final mistake", or something.

A decent thief/mage thrown in the mix would be great as well, as the ones you do fight are weaklings.
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#2 aVENGER

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 07:12 AM

Of course! Once I finish the Chosen of Cyric, I'll get right to improving the Shadow Thieves. That way I can probably re-use some of my AI scripts so it should not be too much trouble :) BTW, I agree that (in BG2) the Shadow Thieves are horribly underpowered when compared to the Vampire guild so I'll do my best to fix that. I'll also restore the Artemis Entreri encounter which you mentioned a while ago if I can, but this probably won't happen until I finish rev 3.00...

#3 Longinus

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 09:13 AM

I know I've mentioned this before, but there were a number of night fights cut from the game you could restore. 3 assassins kill 6 vampires in one of them; shame it was cut.

That fight revolves around the char VVARKAN.CRE

Aran's script is also screwed up. He's quite tough for a thief/mage but I wish he actually cast improved haste as his final spell. Those are just minor things.

Did you feel that the Shadow Thieves had enough presence in BG2. I know they are supposed to be insidious, but they are also supposed to run the city. You should, therefore, see them everywhere.

A number of mugger encounters were cut (the dialogue is still present as well). If you just look at the MUGGER creature files, you'll see. There's an encounter where a dwarf and an ogre mug a tourist (the scripts need to be fixed though). Certain party members will intervene.

I look forward to your future updates; now I have yet another reason to play BG2 for the 1000th time.
"If you remember me, then you must also remember what you did!"

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#4 aVENGER

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 02:04 PM

I know I've mentioned this before, but there were a number of night fights cut from the game you could restore. 3 assassins kill 6 vampires in one of them; shame it was cut.


Interesting. Do these encounters happen at the predefined 'vampire spawn spots' or are they suppose to take place at some specific location ?

Aran's script is also screwed up. He's quite tough for a thief/mage but I wish he actually cast improved haste as his final spell.


Well, I have to admit that in all of my attempts of replaying BG2 I've only sided with Bodhi ONCE and that was a long time ago, so I really don't remember how Aran fought. I might check it out this weekend, but judging from the creature file ARAN2.CRE he is affected by two separate scripts. One is for using items and potions and the other for casting spells. Perhaps there is a problem with the two scripts overlapping and not considering the pause of 6 seconds which BG2 requires between recasting of spells or using items. My own rogues use Xyx's 'cast and attack' technique so this can not happen :) I might re-mod Aran's script when I'm finished with my own encounter.

A number of mugger encounters were cut (the dialogue is still present as well). If you just look at the MUGGER creature files, you'll see.


Heh, this is the first time that I see a Reaction() check actually being used in BG2 (it's a value derived from the player's reputation and charisma). These encounters look great, and the NPC comments are nice as well. I will make sure to restore this in some future update, thanks for pointing it out Longinus.

#5 Longinus

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 03:42 PM

The cut night fights were meant to take place after the others, but the positioning commands were absent from the VAMPSTTP.BCS file (which spawns the other night fighters in certain spots in certain maps).

If you tweak the AIs of each participant (all 6 vamps and the 3 thieves whose scripts are messed up), and command them to spawn like the other night fights do (which is if you haven't sided with Bodhi), then it should work fine. The thieves are all hasted and make short work of the vamps. You could slow the killing down in order to create the impression that a guild war is actually happening.

The night fight chars all have VV in their names. There's an interesting VVBODHI who single-handedly kills 6 thieves.
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#6 Longinus

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 03:44 PM

Aran is quite tough. He summons a Glabrezu in the hallway. I found that if I deleted a superflous command near the bottom of his mage script, he'd cast improved hasted before attacking hand-to-hand.
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#7 Longinus

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 03:47 PM

Not one Shadow Thief used a dagger of venom in BG2. The top assassins would certainly wield them.
"If you remember me, then you must also remember what you did!"

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#8 aVENGER

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Posted 14 March 2003 - 08:13 PM

Aran is quite tough. He summons a Glabrezu in the hallway. I found that if I deleted a superflous command near the bottom of his mage script, he'd cast improved hasted before attacking hand-to-hand.


Yes, the three successive AttackOneRound() commands seam to be blocking the rest of his script. I have created a much more complex mage/thief script for Zaeron (of my group) and I could easily port it to Aran who is currently casting some rather pointless spells like Power Word Sleep and such. I'd change that and make him cast mislead and improved haste before attacking in melee. BTW, my misleads are scripted to run away instead of standing rooted on the spot :)

I still think thst he would be much better with 'cast and attack'. Xyx's script basically uses the free time between casting spells for attacking and vice versa. Really neat.

About the Dagger of Venom, I might add it to the tougher thieves which spawn when you attack Aran's lair (if siding with Bodhi). One dagger will still remain available in my shop.

#9 Longinus

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Posted 15 March 2003 - 09:21 AM

Couldn't you code Aran to cast Power Word Sleep if someone's HP drops to 10-20%? Similar to how mages are scripted to cast Power Word Silence if an enemy mage or cleric is nearby.

Your improved script sounds great. Aran does cast some nice spells like Summon Fiend (a Nabbasu - not a Glabrezu like I stated earlier), which are worth keeping. He casts it in the hallway just outside his lair, and so the abyssal gateway lines up with the geometry. Very cool if you ask me.

More improvements worth considering:

The thieves you fight in Irenicus' dungeon are pitiful. I felt that the thieves you need to fight in order to escape near the end should've been stronger. Maybe you could throw some more regular thieves into the mix, and improve the thief/mage slightly.

The assassins Aran sends to aid you against Bodhi are also quite weak. Arkanis is ok, but Yachiko wields throwing daggers by default. If she wielded her sword initially, she'd successfully backstab the vampire she attacks (she spawns behind it, and yes, Yachiko is a woman using a male avatar).

Gofus, another assassin is wiedling a +1 short sword in his off hand, which of course, won't hurt many of the vampires. I think a change is acceptable.

By the way, wouldn't those elite assassins seem cool if they were all wearing black Shadow Armour -- lending a *Shadow Thieves return for vengence* atmosphere to the battle?
"If you remember me, then you must also remember what you did!"

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#10 aVENGER

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Posted 15 March 2003 - 02:47 PM

Couldn't you code Aran to cast Power Word Sleep if someone's HP drops to 10-20%? Similar to how mages are scripted to cast Power Word Silence if an enemy mage or cleric is nearby.


That would be very easy to do. In fact, my Cyric characters use the same method for determining when to cast Power Word:Stun and such spells.

The thieves you fight in Irenicus' dungeon are pitiful. I felt that the thieves you need to fight in order to escape near the end should've been stronger. Maybe you could throw some more regular thieves into the mix, and improve the thief/mage slightly.


As I understand it, Wes Weimer already arranged something similar in his 'Tactics' mod.

The assassins Aran sends to aid you against Bodhi are also quite weak. Arkanis is ok, but Yachiko wields throwing daggers by default. If she wielded her sword initially, she'd successfully backstab the vampire she attacks (she spawns behind it, and yes, Yachiko is a woman using a male avatar).


Noted. l'll try to fix the appropriate .cre files and possible tweak their scripts a bit.

By the way, wouldn't those elite assassins seem cool if they were all wearing black Shadow Armour -- lending a *Shadow Thieves return for vengence* atmosphere to the battle?


Most certainly! But I would make an undroppable version of it so that players doesn't end up sacrificing his allies for their armor.

#11 Samuel Coyote

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 04:28 AM

A minor thing, but one of the muggings really bug me: the one in the docks. You get attacked by thugs there even when you're a shadow thief guildmaster. Maybe have the muggings make some more sense; if you have the thief stronghold, you might just tell the muggers to take a hike. Would be neat with some encounters(like the above mention robbing of a tourist). One of the things thats really missing with the thief stronghold is some damn respect. You're the equivilent of a crime boss, lets see some people noticing it! Being able to get involved in some muggings and such would be a great way to show it.

#12 Longinus

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 07:26 AM

Avenger, if you're worried that the cut night fight I mentioned would replace files in another mod if restored (the vamp/thief spawn script), then you could just place the characters in a map somewhere at night (like the docks -- sort of like the thieves kicking the vampires out of their territory). The regular Arkanis you fight normally if siding against the Shadow Thieves would need to be alive though (you could script the encounter to spawn at night only if ARKANISG.CRE is still alive)

The good thing about the cut night fights is that there's dialogue for whatever side you've chosen (Aran, Bodhi or neutral).

Most certainly! But I would make an undroppable version of it so that players doesn't end up sacrificing his allies for their armor.

I think Arkanis needs a stat boost anyway. There's already an Improved Bodhi and an Improved Driz'zt (even though the original Driz'zt ally was cheating), so why not an improved Arkanis? You could give him an extra attack and a better THAC0.

According to his stats, he's a 1/17 thief/fighter, yet his base THAC0 is 12.
"If you remember me, then you must also remember what you did!"

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#13 Longinus

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 07:28 AM

A minor thing, but one of the muggings really bug me: the one in the docks. You get attacked by thugs there even when you're a shadow thief guildmaster. Maybe have the muggings make some more sense; if you have the thief stronghold, you might just tell the muggers to take a hike. Would be neat with some encounters(like the above mention robbing of a tourist). One of the things thats really missing with the thief stronghold is some damn respect. You're the equivilent of a crime boss, lets see some people noticing it! Being able to get involved in some muggings and such would be a great way to show it.

The muggers might not recognize you, or even know of you. What I find annoying is that the mugger will attack you even if you're surrounded by vampires.
"If you remember me, then you must also remember what you did!"

~ Edge, Panzer Dragoon Saga

#14 kozand

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 08:10 AM

I dunno if it is feasible for u but, I suggest u take account Weimer's tactic mod components. It contains improved random in city/city transation area encounters (invisble roaming squirel/bird triggers and the like) and improved fights like TorGal. I mean if u want to implement missing vampire vs ST encounters in the game it would be cool to have them all. Actually I mean that no area creature spawning script file should override the other so we can have them all. If this is impossible, since there are many mods out there and it is not your job to track them all, u can always give us a list of modified files so willing people can compare them individually to avoid frustrating imcompatibilities.

An example is your racial traits spell changes. Did u ever consider to implement new sleep spell by combining it Weimer's extended wizard spell file?

Another example is the Cyric encounter. If I remember correctly u plan to add it in Underdark Exit area. Tashia mod contains Arilistan.cre spawn scripting. It would be annoying to see him deleted. Lastly I dunno nothing about scripting so if I bore u I apologise. I think u, like all mod makers, are doing a great job. I can tell u that the game has already changed much in comparison to the official version and improved quiet a lot!

#15 aVENGER

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 09:28 AM

I dunno if it is feasible for u but, I suggest u take account Weimer's tactic mod components. It contains improved random in city/city transation area encounters (invisble roaming squirel/bird triggers and the like) and improved fights like TorGal.


Hmm...I guess Wes would be better suited for restoring the Vampire War fight. Perhaps you could ask him to do this since his 'Tactics' mod already offers many other encounter improvements and I wouldn't want to create inter-mod conflicts.

Another example is the Cyric encounter. If I remember correctly u plan to add it in Underdark Exit area.


Nope. My encounter takes place right after you defeat Bodhi in CH6 so the originating location would be AR0800 (The Graveyard). Besides, only the BETA version will trigger the battle immediately. The final version is planned as a quest where the Cyric rogues manage to steel the Lanthorn from you.

Lastly I dunno nothing about scripting so if I bore u I apologise. I think u, like all mod makers, are doing a great job.


Thanks! BTW, script writing itself is not overly difficult to learn or use, but script testing can often be very time consuming and tedious.

#16 kozand

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 10:14 AM

Thanks for feedback! Actually I tell this everybody. We should have a common data base for all WeiDU mods. Nobody should touch an already done area (except bugfixing, tweaking of one's mod). So no conflicts would occur. I wonder whether can it be done? Otherwise mods sabotage each other.

#17 Samuel Coyote

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 10:15 AM

A new crime boss in the shadow thieves is not something that go unnoticed, even among independant operators(Which would normaly be few, but would make some sense considering the war). If you consider the options you have when assigning your thieves, you're pretty much in charge of the city operations and the surrounding lands. Seeing that the death of Mae'Var is a pretty major thing in itself... well, word travels quickly, it makes no real sense that the muggers wouldn't be aware of it. Besides, it would add to the feeling of being a crime boss. You'd expect some perks, not just constantly having to bail out your foolish underlings and return back all too often to pay your tribute. Not exactly the glamourous life of crime you expect.

Actually, I think its a flaw of many strongholds, that posessing them wont influence the way people treat you, cept those directly related to your stronghold. Having the fighter stronghold makes you a lord, but nobles still treat you like dirt. Having the mage stronghold makes you... well, it means your powerful enough the cowled wizards take you seriously. But lets stick to the thief stronghold for now, since thieves are what this is about. The thief stronghold has by far the most potential of all, but its by far the worst as is. Heck, if you DONT take it, you get 10 000 gold and a nice sword(nice in the sense that you can sell it for alot of money). It takes quite a while to raise that kind of money with the guild. Such potential, wasted...

#18 kozand

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 10:20 AM

Actually they planned strongholds as optional components. And they did not want complicate dialog.tlk further. And I am against to ingame changes. Because they won't be compatible with anything. If u want people react for strongholds u will be forced to change many bioware non joinable NPCs!

Mods should only add new content, except balancing.

#19 Longinus

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 11:44 AM

A new crime boss in the shadow thieves is not something that go unnoticed, even among independant operators(Which would normaly be few, but would make some sense considering the war). If you consider the options you have when assigning your thieves, you're pretty much in charge of the city operations and the surrounding lands. Seeing that the death of Mae'Var is a pretty major thing in itself... well, word travels quickly, it makes no real sense that the muggers wouldn't be aware of it. Besides, it would add to the feeling of being a crime boss. You'd expect some perks, not just constantly having to bail out your foolish underlings and return back all too often to pay your tribute. Not exactly the glamourous life of crime you expect.

Actually, I think its a flaw of many strongholds, that posessing them wont influence the way people treat you, cept those directly related to your stronghold. Having the fighter stronghold makes you a lord, but nobles still treat you like dirt. Having the mage stronghold makes you... well, it means your powerful enough the cowled wizards take you seriously. But lets stick to the thief stronghold for now, since thieves are what this is about. The thief stronghold has by far the most potential of all, but its by far the worst as is. Heck, if you DONT take it, you get 10 000 gold and a nice sword(nice in the sense that you can sell it for alot of money). It takes quite a while to raise that kind of money with the guild. Such potential, wasted...

I don't know how difficult it would be to code in a variable whereby the muggers back off if you're a guild leader. Perhaps a completed Mae'var quest global could be used, in which case more dialogue would need to be written.

The improved thief guild mod does a good job at expanding the guild, though I would've liked some thiefly quests involving stealth and theft. Maybe we can nag the creator. :)
"If you remember me, then you must also remember what you did!"

~ Edge, Panzer Dragoon Saga

#20 Longinus

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Posted 16 March 2003 - 11:50 AM

Avenger, I'd really like to see that cut night fight in your mod because it would give the Shadow Thieves more presence. The Shadow Thieves would in the very least be on even footing with the vampires -- they wouldn't be losing the war, but the game portrays them as the weaker side.

I confirmed in another forum that Weimer didn't improve the three thieves you fight before exiting Irenicus' dungeon. Someone wrote that they were still wimps. Haha.

One more thing: the Shadow Thieves guarding the guildhall are ok but they are spread around the building meaning a player can just kill two at the front and enter it. A few more DASSIN creatures files spawning at the front would be cool.

:D :D :D
"If you remember me, then you must also remember what you did!"

~ Edge, Panzer Dragoon Saga



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