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#1 witya

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 04:58 PM

Hi all,

I always get sick with coding dialogues for my mods. Sometimes it's the reason for the lack of motivation to work on them. In any case, I thought that a tool to generate script would be handy. I had the Conversation Editor of NWN in my mind when I started to work on this yesterday and here's what I got so far.

It's a script generator that will create you a coded dialogue that you can copypaste into a text file.

conv01.JPG

You can add dialogue lines here, or delete them. You can drag them to another valid line. You can also modify them later and can add conditions and/or actions to the given line. Pink lines are said by the NPC, greens are said by PC. You can't copy lines.

You can also link lines to other lines by holding down the control key while dragging them, defining where the dialogue should continue. This is the way you complete a branching tree, returning all the branches to one line.

You can choose the type of conversation (begin-end, chain if with npc-pc, chain if with npc-npc)
You can define the name of the conversation.
You should define the name of the initiator of a chain dialogue if you use one of the chain if types.
You should define the name of the partner of a chain dialogue if you use chain if with npc-npc.

If you finish adding lines, you can click the "Script!" button to get the generated script.

conv02.JPG

Here you can set the conditions and/or actions for the given line. Just write them in the textboxes. There are some templates you can choose from the comboboxes too. Not all of them are listed though, so minor dialogue coding knowledge is still required.

Also, you should know what you want to do. Giving a condition to a line that is followed by line with the same condition is useless. (and it probably messes some things up, haven't tested this yet ^^)

conv03.JPG

Here is the result of a simple joining dialogue of an NPC, with begin-end. As the magnificent ScriptCat™ ^^ says, you can copypaste this code into a text file.

conv04.JPG

The same with chain if.

conv06.JPG

And a splendid conversation between the test subject and our beloved Jaheira, using the chain if with npc-npc type. ^^

You can also save a half-finished conversation into a cms file, so you can load it and finish it later.

What's not included (yet):

-Extern and append
-Multiple conversation editing
-Turning an existing d file into a conversation tree
-Linking lines together is functionally working, but it's not visible if two of them are already linked
-Displaying information about lines (links, conditions, actions), so you don't have to open the "Change Conditions/Actions" window

Requirements:

-Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 (as far as I know, nothing else)


So far it works, now only some testing remains! ^^

Edited by witya, 11 July 2009 - 05:00 PM.

"I love myself and I have no reason to doubt my feelings..."

#2 Azkyroth

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Posted 11 July 2009 - 10:48 PM

Personally, I'm not likely to use this, but this looks like a useful utility in principle.
"Tyranny is a quiet thing at first, a prim and proper lady pursing her lips and shaking her head disapprovingly, asking, well what were you doing (wearing that dress, walking home at that hour, expressing those inappropriate thoughts) anyway? It's subtle and insidious, disguised as reasonable precautions which become more and more oppressive over time, until our lives are defined by the things we must avoid. She's easy enough to agree with, after all, she's only trying to help -- and yet she's one of the most dangerous influences we face, because if she prevails, it puts the raping, robbing, axe-wielding madmen of the world in complete control. Eventually they'll barely need to wield a thing, all they'll have to do is leer menacingly and we fall all over ourselves trying to placate them." -godlizard

#3 Scipio

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 01:02 AM

As a complete ignoramus who wants to do mod dialogues I could most certainly use something like this!
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#4 witya

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 05:37 AM

Soon there will be a version out for trying. ^^ Final touches remain to the functionality and, of course, testing.

Today's additions:

conv07.JPG

Now you can see the conditions and actions of the selected node.
The grey line represents a link to another node where the conversation continues.
"I love myself and I have no reason to doubt my feelings..."

#5 Jarno Mikkola

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 05:43 AM

Sure looks somewhat promising... :cheers:

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#6 Epantiras

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 05:58 AM

Very interesting ;-) even though I'll probably keep on using Notepad instead.

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#7 Sasha Al'Therin

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 08:49 AM

Will this allow for editing of existing dialog files and therefore the creation of the proper weidu .d file code to add new states and transitions? Or is this only intended for new dialog files?
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#8 the bigg

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 08:51 AM

Will this allow for editing of existing dialog files and therefore the creation of the proper weidu .d file code to add new states and transitions? Or is this only intended for new dialog files?


What's not included (yet):

-Turning an existing d file into a conversation tree


Italian users: help test the Stivan NPC!

Author or Co-Author: WeiDU - Widescreen - Generalized Biffing - Refinements - TB#Tweaks - IWD2Tweaks - TB#Characters - Traify Tool - Some mods that I won't mention in public
Maintainer: Semi-Multi Clerics - Nalia Mod - Nvidia Fix
Code dumps: Detect custom secondary types - Stutter Investigator

If possible, send diffs, translations and other contributions using Git.


#9 berelinde

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 09:03 AM

This is incredibly cool. Don't know what .NET is or if I can use it on my machine, but it's still cool.

My first thought is that I might even use this myself. I know how to code dialogue, and I type quickly, but if it spares me a bit of typing during routine dialogue tasks, so much the better.

My second thought is that it might help "ideas people" get their mods out.

My third thought is that people who use this to write code could potentially find themselves in trouble because they have bugs they don't know how to fix. Little bit of knowledge...

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#10 the bigg

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 09:14 AM

This is incredibly cool. Don't know what .NET is or if I can use it on my machine, but it's still cool.

I was about to post an Obama image macro as response <_<
Anyway you can use it if you use Windows 98 or later, and is included in Vista and later (and is installed by Windows Update anyway). http://lmgtfy.com/?q...T Framework 2.0

Italian users: help test the Stivan NPC!

Author or Co-Author: WeiDU - Widescreen - Generalized Biffing - Refinements - TB#Tweaks - IWD2Tweaks - TB#Characters - Traify Tool - Some mods that I won't mention in public
Maintainer: Semi-Multi Clerics - Nalia Mod - Nvidia Fix
Code dumps: Detect custom secondary types - Stutter Investigator

If possible, send diffs, translations and other contributions using Git.


#11 GeN1e

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 10:14 AM

My second thought is that it might help "ideas people" get their mods out.

Seconded. Notepad rules, but beginners prefer GUI over it, and reasonably so.

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#12 yarpen

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 10:19 AM

Awesome!

#13 Chevalier

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 10:58 AM

Some of you don't understand how much this type of product would help me work on a mod!!!!! :wub: :clap:

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#14 witya

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 11:30 AM

Will this allow for editing of existing dialog files and therefore the creation of the proper weidu .d file code to add new states and transitions? Or is this only intended for new dialog files?


Possible, but I don't know yet. That seems more complicated for me. Maybe I'll give it a try in the future and see if it's really that difficult as I think.

This is incredibly cool. Don't know what .NET is or if I can use it on my machine, but it's still cool.

My first thought is that I might even use this myself. I know how to code dialogue, and I type quickly, but if it spares me a bit of typing during routine dialogue tasks, so much the better.

My second thought is that it might help "ideas people" get their mods out.

My third thought is that people who use this to write code could potentially find themselves in trouble because they have bugs they don't know how to fix. Little bit of knowledge...


That's where the testing comes into picture. I basicly started to code this program for my own use, but I will only release this after I've tested it thoroughly. Of course, there is always a possibility that there will be bugs. I intend to provide support for those who run into trouble.

In any case, thank you all for your opinions and ideas about it. ^^ Criticism is welcome as usual. I'm also accepting suggestions on how to expand it.
"I love myself and I have no reason to doubt my feelings..."

#15 the bigg

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 11:47 AM

My third thought is that people who use this to write code could potentially find themselves in trouble because they have bugs they don't know how to fix. Little bit of knowledge...

That's where the testing comes into picture. I basicly started to code this program for my own use, but I will only release this after I've tested it thoroughly. Of course, there is always a possibility that there will be bugs. I intend to provide support for those who run into trouble.

I think she's saying that people who have only worked with CM and can't work on the raw code will be disadvantaged when they have to fix bugs where they pop up - not because CM is buggy, but because their mod is.

Italian users: help test the Stivan NPC!

Author or Co-Author: WeiDU - Widescreen - Generalized Biffing - Refinements - TB#Tweaks - IWD2Tweaks - TB#Characters - Traify Tool - Some mods that I won't mention in public
Maintainer: Semi-Multi Clerics - Nalia Mod - Nvidia Fix
Code dumps: Detect custom secondary types - Stutter Investigator

If possible, send diffs, translations and other contributions using Git.


#16 witya

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 12:02 PM

I think she's saying that people who have only worked with CM and can't work on the raw code will be disadvantaged when they have to fix bugs where they pop up - not because CM is buggy, but because their mod is.


That slipped my mind. That's quite possible. I could put a disclaimer or something, that this program will not replace all the mod work for the user, just shorten the time of coding and writing a dialogue. All the other scripting work is up to the user.

I understand the issue and this is not really a solution, but still I can't really think of anything else atm.
"I love myself and I have no reason to doubt my feelings..."

#17 berelinde

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Posted 12 July 2009 - 01:03 PM

I think she's saying that people who have only worked with CM and can't work on the raw code will be disadvantaged when they have to fix bugs where they pop up - not because CM is buggy, but because their mod is.


That slipped my mind. That's quite possible. I could put a disclaimer or something, that this program will not replace all the mod work for the user, just shorten the time of coding and writing a dialogue. All the other scripting work is up to the user.

I understand the issue and this is not really a solution, but still I can't really think of anything else atm.

The bigg was right about what I meant by my statement. It's easy for the modder to make little errors, like contradictory triggers or unattainable transitions, and that might not be readily visible until the mod is tested. Done it myself often enough. It's easier to spot these logic failures if the modder knows the basics of dialogue coding.

I don't intend this as discouragement! It's a great idea, and a welcome shortcut. I'm just saying that modders are still going to have to test their mods.

The fact that you were able to get a user-friendly interface working is a tremendous breakthrough!

And people learn by example. When learning a new language, people mimic sounds first and eventually learn grammar and syntax, but they need to see examples, first. Seeing their dialogue coded will help them get a clearer understanding of what goes on "under the hood."

"Imagination is given to man to console him for what he is not; a sense of humor, for what he is." - Oscar Wilde

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#18 Lurker of the north

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 03:58 AM

-Oooh! This looks very, very promising.
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#19 Jarno Mikkola

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 05:03 AM

And people learn by example.

That's to say... that we need a tutorial, but I am sure that if one is willing to give it time and the tool is actually useful, someone will make them.

...not that we need to start playing kids again. :huh:

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#20 vilkacis

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Posted 14 July 2009 - 07:02 AM

Fan-bloody-tastic. Dialogue coding bores the hell out of me.