These are ideas that I've thought of so far while creating my module. They are ideas that I think would make creating a module a bit easier. Hopefully, Arcanum 2 (if released) will have some modding tools just like Arcanum. If so, I hope some of these things are included.
1 - Hand building 1 or 2 sectors of forests tree by tree is not my strong point. I did it, however, but it was incredibly painful. I'd like to see a new button under the 'environment' tab in WorldEd which you can use to put in clumps of random trees/scenery based on a selected group. Eg, Forest Trees, Elven Forest Trees, or Green Grasslands and then when you click on your map, a whole bunch/group of trees/plants is placed based on what you've chosen. That way, if I have a sector that I want to half-fill with trees, I can use this tool, rather than hand-crafting the area (or deleting everything in the sector, editting terrain to make it forest and then REMOVING half the trees which is the only other option).
2 - In dialogue @pcname@ puts the PCs name in the dialogue. I want something similar for Global Variables like @gvNUM@ that will display the current value of Global Variable NUM. It would save me a whole lot of script checking when the PC asks about their bank balance in the Bank Teller dialogue. Also, I could use it for something like 'You have only killed @gv1@ rats! Go back and kill them all!' If the PC hasn't killed all the rats. While I doubt something like this would be used that often, it would give me some extra flexibility to do some fancy things for some of my quests. Also, I'd like to see options for the other variables like @gfNUM@, @pvNUM@ etc... For ALL the options, flags and variables that you can use. Again, not used that often, but it would add some extra flexibility (just in case). Also, I'd like to be able to use these same codes in the '.mes' files such as 'gamebook.mes' and 'gamenote.mes'. So that I can write a telegram that is actually addressed to the PC by using the code '@pcname@' rather than using 'adventurer'.
3 - tr9 -0 doesn't work. In several instances, I only want an apprentice training line to appear if the PC hasn't already got apprentice training but 'tr9 -0' which is supposed to mean 'Training in Skill 9 <= No Training', doesn't work. Also, the whole training auto-dialogue lines I'm not too happy with. I'd prefer they were removed so that I could create my own custom ones for each specific training situation.
4 - I want to be able to have something like 'gv1 -9' in dialogue which is a check to see if 'gv1' is less than OR equal to 9. I would also like 'gv1 +11' to check if 'Global Variable 1' is greater than OR equal to 11. I would like to use these in conjunction with 'gv1 10' which would check if 'Global Variable 1' is EQUAL to 10.
5 - WorldEd seems to have the unfortunate habit of saving your map AFTER you use the 'delete sector' command. This is annoying when you want make a mistake and want to go back to the version of your map BEFORE you deleted. 'Deleting' seems to have a bad habit of wiping out a sector even when you reload the map. FIX PLEASE!!
6 - Known and Unknown NPCs. An NPC automatically becomes 'Known' after the PC talks to the NPC once. EVEN if the PC hasn't asked for the NPC's name. I would like an 'unknown' NPC become 'known' ONLY when I decide. Maybe I can set a flag like 'kn 1' for 'known = 1' or something like that. But a way where I can control it so that a PC doesn't know the name of an NPC UNTIL they ask for a name (or when I decide).
7 - Also in dialogue, I would like to be able to have a code in the intelligence field like '5, -9' so that only a PC with an intelligence higher than or equal to 5 AND less than or equal to 9, would see this dialogue line. This would have helped me out in my crop rotation quest.
8 - 'copy', 'paste' and 'fill' features in WorldEd so that I can drag a box around an area of map in Top-Down view, select copy, then drag out an area the same size where I want what I've selected to be pasted and then select 'paste'. It would then copy and paste an EXACT replica of EVERYTHING within that area over the area I have selected to paste in. Scenery, Facades, Buildings the LOT. I also want to drag out an area in Top-Down view and select 'fill' and have that area filled with the terrain of my choosing. Putting in any trees and plants associated with that terrain as well, but only if I tick a certain option to do so. Perhaps this 'fill' command could be used instead of a button to place in random groups of trees and plants as well. Also, the copy feature needs to be able to copy and paste between maps. It would've saved me a lot fot trouble when I realised that my pathetic 5x5 original map for Grayhills (sic) was too small.
9 - (The following idea has been fixed with Arcanum, with thanks to DjUnique and his Script Editor. I hope it is heeded for Arcanum 2). To the individual who made the 'SockMonkey ScriptMaker' *cough* Tim Cain *cough*. While it was not THAT difficult working with your programme, it was however, far from pleasant. Is it possible, in a future version of ScriptMaker, to be able to edit an already existing line of script WITHOUT having to re-build the entire line? Also, goto lines should not ALWAYS remap, this was annoying because you had to not only guess the line number you wanted to 'goto', but you also had to guess what line number SockMonkey would remap your goto line to as well, if you had a line of script to delete after making the 'goto' line. I also found it quite biazarre that when I had a 'goto line Local 0' it actually changed the '0' and incremented it. When I want to go to 'Local 0', I want to go to 'Local 0', not have it remap to 'Local 1' or 'Local 2' later on when I add or delete a line of script. Although, I did find RARE occasions where remapping goto lines was appreciated. But, if it means dealing with the current situation, I'd prefer it if they didn't remap and it was instead just a lot easier to change the script.
10 - The ability to make my own art as well (in particular my own facades). With the next mod I'm working on I want.... Er... Yeah what the hell, I might as well spill the beans... I want PIRATE SHIPS!! I want a whole range of ships that are engaged in combat (my next mod is 'Pirates and Merchants', if I ever get around to it). If I could find an artist to make me some ships and then import them into my mod, I could create some very nice ocean battles with Pirate Ships and Kings Ships and Trading Ships etc... All of them looking slightly damaged from battle and with a 'Gang Plank' Facade so that I can join the two ships as if they are about to be boarded. Then I could have '33% more Pirate Action' as someone said on the Sierra Arcanum General Forum
(Although, I was thinking of this mod idea well before I read that).
11 - I suppose it is too late for this, but, could ALL items have an internal name by default? Currently, wine has an internal name of 'alcohol' which is good as I can use it in a beggars' dialogue. However, I have a module where I want the PC to get some 'Large Gears' and give them to an NPC. I want to be able to use ANY Large Gears. However, because 'Large Gears' does not have an internal name other than 'generic' I can not use them in a quest, instead, I have to make my own 'Large Gears' specifically for my quest and have the PC get hold of them somehow by either searching the right container or getting them from the right NPC. My intention was that the PC could buy/find ANY 'Large Gears' anywhere and use them. If EVERY item had an internal name, then it would be possible to use ANY general item in a quest (and leave me open to do some of my more ambitious ideas like never-ending quests). Keep in mind that I want EVERY item to have a unique name (in other words, 'uncut rubies' as well as 'rubies' rather than just 'rubies'. That way I can make my jeweller change uncut precious stones into cut ones and use them BOTH in quests).
12 - Modules should be COMPLETELY independent. ANYTHING in the "Arcanum\Modules\NAME OF MOD" directory should over-rule ALL other Arcanum files. That way, we can make spells and alter schematics specific to each module, as opposed to having to add them in under the "data" directory which currently results in EVER module having the same affects, which is a bummer because it means if there are TWO mods that have different spells, then I can only install and play one at a time. This includes any new module specific art as well. I'd like to be able to add it into ONE module only. I don't like making changes to every other mod. Also, it helps keep modules independent and gives modders a complete range of things to play with.
Moo... Moo... I'm a Troika Cow (Ready to be milked with Arcanum 2)