Most of my modding experience is with Skyrim (and as a user, not a mod maker), and there’s a utility or two that allows you to combine things like spawn lists and items from disparate mods. For those who aren’t familiar with modding Bethesda games, the easiest method is to make a Bashed or Smashed Patch - basically using a utility (Wrye Bash or Mator Smash) that looks at your mod list and combines all the spawns into one “mod” that it makes, thereby bypassing conflicts as Skyrim and most Beth games only read the last mod in your list that conflicts with anything else. Say, you have your monster mod Big Titty Dragons that makes big titty dragons spawn in game, and you have Violent Murder Dragons that makes violent murder dragons spawn loaded after it, you won’t see Big Titty Dragons. Because the item groups and spawn lists are done in JSON format, so they’re easily laid out and such, how difficult would it be to make a utility to combine your various item/monster spawns into a single mod? I’m not entirely sure that there’d be a need for it, but I recall that certain monster mods don’t play nicely with others in Cata.
I think you should start with a problem and work backwards. If there is a mod conflict problem that is solvable, we’d like to fix it in the main game rather than having people jump through hoops with external tools to fix it.
That’s understandable, I personally prefer having software that doesn’t force you to do hacky work arounds like overwriting character skeleton files (glares at Skyrim). So far, Cata seems to do pretty well on that front. But there’s always going to be non-repo mods and people who like to stack in everything and the kitchen sink, so if someone wrote a utility like that it’d still be handy. If nothing else, saving a lot of time making combined spawn lists would be worthwhile.
I’m definitely not asking the developer team to do it, and I lack the requisite C++ knowledge, but if the idea is out there, maybe it’ll get picked up by someone.
Kevin’s saying (to my understanding) he’d like the tools to be part of the main game’s JSON API, not some third party tool. If a first party mod can use it, the same tools are available to third party mods.
Oh, OK. That’d be handy. So basically, someone would need to write the tool with whatever the project’s guidelines are for C++ coding, then submit a PR to have it reviewed and if approved it’d be rolled into the experimentals?
Well yes, but it wouldn’t be an extra tool, it’d be part of the JSON loading code.
Alright, that makes sense. As I said before, it’s beyond me, but someone out there might think it’s a good idea and submit it.
(third party tool would still have a place, though, for the folks who play earlier versions or Stable, so it’s not necessarily an either/or proposition, but as I stressed previously I’m just tossing ideas out into the aether)
Well, as Kevin said, you need a problem first before you can have a solution. I haven’t heard of anything where this has happened.
So, the thing that prompted this was an old issue with Dinomod. Apparently there was a problem with Dinomod where it wouldn’t spawn dinos if there were other mods with spawn lists placed after it. The solution, at the time, was a consolidation of the spawn lists. As far as I know, if this WAS an issue, it’s been fixed a while back. However, I have noticed that I get more diverse spawning when I have a single spawn list or 2 - 3 spawn lists via mods, instead of 7 - 8. Seems like a quality of life improvement, not a ‘problem’ per se, but useful.