Content: Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Background: Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Pattern: Blank Waves Notes Sharp Wood Rockface Leather Honey Vertical Triangles
Welcome to Xbox Chaos: Modding Evolved

Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to contribute to this site by submitting your own content or replying to existing content. You'll be able to customize your profile, receive reputation points as a reward for submitting content, while also communicating with other members via your own private inbox, plus much more! This message will be removed once you have signed in.

  • entries
    8
  • comments
    30
  • views
    19,794

Halo Vs Call Of Duty Modding: Part 3

Thunder

930 views

This is the long forgotten final installment to my modding opinion articles. If you are new to these articles, I want to stress that they are my opinions. In case you don't know what part 3 will be about, I will be discussing the differences in the condition of the scenes for Halo and Call of Duty.

That being said, let's talk Call of Duty. Since I started writing these, a new Call of Duty has been released as many of you know. There really hasn't been much in terms of new mods that have came out of this area. Rather, the thing I see more in this title is finding glitches to rank up and unlock in game items quicker than you are supposed to. Most of the actual mods are not really used since they are offline only. The way this appears to me is that there are a ton of people who just sit around waiting for some way to cheat themselves out of having to play to the game. My response to that is if you have to cheat the ranking system, doesn't that mean the game sucks too much to just continue playing it all the time. Just find a new game (trust me, there are plenty of them (try Skyrim)).

There however are bigger problems arising across the entire scene, including Halo specifically. 343 Industries, the new developer of Halo, seems to have mortally messed up security of unlocks in Halo 4. It is now possible to unlock stuff online through just basic Hex Editing of the GPD file. Bungie was much smarter with this because they basically recalculated all of the unlocks upon startup of the game in Reach and Halo 3. The problem here is, the cheaters have all of a sudden flocked to wherever they can cheat. AMD has recently pointed out his blog that about 60% of modding topics today on larger modding sites are related to GPD modding. Before Halo 4, this number was probably a mere few percent in the Halo scene.

Basically, about 80% of the console modding scene has seen a shift from interesting and exciting innovation of modding from the early Xbox 360 days to a new scene that is centered around finding ways to exploit game ranking and unlock systems. Why has this changed you might ask? I really don't have an answer to that but I can guess that since it is more visible to the mass public, people see it and want to do that themselves due to laziness. I don't really understand where laziness comes from anyways in video games since video games are supposed to be a leisure activity in the first place. Perhaps gaming needs to become less competitive for this to change.




4 Comments


I hope those percentages are based on actual tutorials or research threads, and not just people asking other people to mod their stuff. A 2 post thread asking someone to mod their gpd should not be weighted the same as, say, a 27 page thread about gametype format research.

Now the rant.

Private groups like the people working on assembly are exactly why research is having to be done from scratch. Saying things like "please don't overwork yourselves if you don't want/need/have to. There are a couple people including myself working on making plugins nice and pretty for Assembly's launch." and other comments that come across as "Don't worry your little heads about it, we got it covered" make it seem like no outside work is wanted. Anyone doing their own personal research wouldn't want to make a program to compete, or publish anything, they'd rather work with those people but they seem to keep it all private. Just like all the previous research that has been lost, a private group did the research and only released certain things and tools.

Yes, open source will help in the end, but it is no surprise to me that no one is posting research. Go look at that 'screenshots of your mods' thread, and tell me how many of those posts showing off stuff actually explain how it was done, or make tutorials or patches? I'd be surprised if the number is in the double digits.

It's also not surprising if you consider that reach didn't have too many tutorials either, same generation engine as H3, so most of the basic stuff was the same from. No one who knew how to do the stuff thought they should make new tutorials, since it was simple basic stuff that was exactly the same as usual. H4 is even more similar to Reach than Reach was to h3. I'd say some of us going back through every tutorial from any previous halo game that can be made to work in H4, should be re-made as a tutorial, for people new to the community. It's pretty daunting for new people when it's almost assumed you should know things already.

Oh, one more gripe, unlocking armor is just as harmful as Zedd modding new chest pieces in Reach. That is to say, it doesn't hurt anyone else at all, or affect anyone elses game experience other than your own. Although, I think Zedd's thing might be worse, since using non-allowed armor enumerations is exactly the same thing that allowed people to go headless in Halo 4.

Thunder, AMD and SnipeStyle like this

Share this comment


Link to comment

To be honest, MBP, that was pretty eye-opening to me. I had never really been able to realize what was going on, and frankly, I've been pretty hypocritical myself.

I pretty much agree with you, but there are a few things that I want to clarify:

I hope those percentages are based on actual tutorials or research threads, and not just people asking other people to mod their stuff. A 2 post thread asking someone to mod their gpd should not be weighted the same as, say, a 27 page thread about gametype format research.

Yes, those percentages are pretty skewed. I counted the topics by hand and didn't feel like including post counts into the mix, and I don't recall gametype modding being as popular back then either. Not to mention the data is rather old at this point.

Private groups like the people working on assembly are exactly why research is having to be done from scratch. Saying things like "please don't overwork yourselves if you don't want/need/have to. There are a couple people including myself working on making plugins nice and pretty for Assembly's launch." and other comments that come across as "Don't worry your little heads about it, we got it covered" make it seem like no outside work is wanted. Anyone doing their own personal research wouldn't want to make a program to compete, or publish anything, they'd rather work with those people but they seem to keep it all private. Just like all the previous research that has been lost, a private group did the research and only released certain things and tools.

What Zedd was saying there is that he had already done loads of research on Halo 4 and didn't want people to re-invent the wheel. Which would be fine if he released what he did, but nothing was ever released except for what's hidden away in Assembly's GitHub repo. That's what the real problem is. I will look into converting the plugins that we have now into Ascension format so that people can use them.

Also, there was another issue related to releasing information from Assembly. The program included a very small bit of Halo 4 research (basically, how to decrypt tagnames and stringIDs) which we obtained from outside sources, and the people who we obtained the information from put us under an informal "contract" where we basically weren't allowed to release anything about the program until a little while after H4 was released in stores. Alex and I actually got flamed horribly by those people when we released that "sneak peek" video (which, in retrospect, was a dumb idea anyway because I get the feeling that it came off as arrogant), and I got in a huge argument with someone because I had been wanting to release the program's source code early and called someone a bad name. We literally were not able to release anything until just recently, when we could upload a source-only version. Keeping it secret wasn't really our fault, but at the same time I can agree that we shouldn't be showboating everything that we figure out without releasing documentation or a demo behind it.

Yes, open source will help in the end, but it is no surprise to me that no one is posting research. Go look at that 'screenshots of your mods' thread, and tell me how many of those posts showing off stuff actually explain how it was done, or make tutorials or patches? I'd be surprised if the number is in the double digits.

I couldn't agree more. Nobody really releases tutorials on how to do things anymore, and it seems that whenever someone makes a mod nowadays they don't even release the mod itself.

A problem that I personally am seeing is that there's a human "I want to be the first to do this" component behind everything (aka SUBZ N VIEWZ), and as a result nobody is releasing details about their work anymore. I myself am guilty of this, and I think I'll actually post a tutorial soon about how to add tags to a .map if Zedd doesn't beat me to it (that last cone picture he posted in the thread you mentioned actually shows a duplicated tag).

It's also not surprising if you consider that reach didn't have too many tutorials either, same generation engine as H3, so most of the basic stuff was the same from. No one who knew how to do the stuff thought they should make new tutorials, since it was simple basic stuff that was exactly the same as usual. H4 is even more similar to Reach than Reach was to h3. I'd say some of us going back through every tutorial from any previous halo game that can be made to work in H4, should be re-made as a tutorial, for people new to the community. It's pretty daunting for new people when it's almost assumed you should know things already.

Yes, we need more tutorials in general. Hopefully our plan of integrating a tutorial system into Assembly will help with this, but we need to encourage it more anyway.

So...yeah. Thanks for posting your thoughts; I'll take it into consideration and see what can be done about this.

Thunder likes this

Share this comment


Link to comment

snip

I couldn't agree more with your analysis of how things have turned. AMD and I will use this information in the future.

Share this comment


Link to comment

In my defense,

AMD got the reasoning behind my "don't do plugins if you don't want to" correct. I had already been working on H4 plugins for over a month at that point. The problem was that I made the decision to release them with Assembly but then it started getting pushed back, as well as my insane idea to keep them exclusive to Assembly to add to its appeal.

As far as the screenshots thread, I am certainly guilty of not explaining much, but some things I post there is stuff I'm still researching and to me it doesn't feel right to make a half-assed tutorial for something that I haven't really understood yet. Adding new tags partially falls under this, as right now the only way to load new object tags is to either replace an existing tag or through modifying the list of globally loaded objects. The former being excessive and the latter being something I don't understand outside of "make the value this and it works!".

And I'd like to believe that there is enough of a difference between 2 chests that are fully set up in the game, with a set price and (low) requirements, only lacking the ability to ever obtain them ever and setting an enum to a null value that the game for whatever reason wasn't set up to handle (though Reach was) thus resulting in no armor/or unlocking all the armor and bypassing requirements and therefore the game's progression system. Unused and impossible vs a glitch and/or used and possible but illegitimate, if you will.

As far as other things, yeah, there's a lack of tutorials for "simple" things that are common knowledge to many of us, but, as far as myself goes, that line has long been blurred so I honestly don't know what things new people would want to see explained anymore.

I'd love to sit down one day and write tutorials and now that you've pointed it out (something I find myself in need of every so often) I just might do that for the newer things I've found but as for "easy" stuff I wouldn't know where to begin.

Share this comment


Link to comment

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now