Well? Let's see it!~
This is a compilation of all the Map Maker Q&A's we've had over time. Pre-beta through post-release.
Hope everyone had a great weekend! For this batch, I'm pleased to announce the introduction of the Map Maker Series of Q&As, which will be mixed in periodically with our traditional batches of Q&As, to give map makers the 'heads up' on our powerful Map Editor for StarCraft II. I know many of you have great plans for mods and maps for StarCraft II, so I can't wait to tell you more about the program you'll be using.
Answering questions, we have Brett Wood, our StarCraft II Senior Software Engineer, but better known as our 'Superfly Father of ScumEdit Programmer by Day Ninja by Night.'
Will doodad placement values increase? (ie, more than 25)
[Brett Wood] We expect the doodad placement value will be on the same order as Warcraft III, which I believe was something like 10,000, so definitely way more than 25
Will the number of available locations/triggers increase? The current limit on locations really cramps some ideas.
[Brett Wood] Any limits on both regions and triggers will be at least in the thousands.
Will the new map editor include ALL the triggers in the program unlike Staredit?
[Brett Wood] Yes, even moreso than Warcraft IIIs WorldEdit. Weve been making a point of ensuring that ALL script functionality is also exposed in the Trigger Editor UI.
Will max unit limits increase? The current unit limit on maps is quite a crimper, and nobody likes CCMU (cannot create more units).
[Brett Wood] I dont recall the exact unit limit in the original StarCraft, but the StarCraft II limit will likely be a healthy boost over the limit in Warcraft III. The exact value hasnt been nailed down yet and will depend on optimizations near the end of the project (i.e. shortly before release).
Will the new map editor include unused units such as the crashed scouts, turrets, eggs, nukes, scarabs, crash command center, etc? Third party programs were needed to use these.
[Brett Wood] All units defined in the data files will be usable in the editor. I believe this was true in Warcraft III as well.
Today we will continue the series we had started a couple of weeks ago. Dustin Browder and Brett Wood, Senior Software Engineer will answer questions from the Map Making Community. If you have questions concerning custom made maps and mods, wed like to invite you to ask them in this thread so they can be included in part 3 of the series.
Chat with Devs: One of the most popular questions we get when it comes to creating UMS (User Map Settings) games or mods is: Will there be a DotA for StarCraft II? For those who are not familiar, DotA (Defense of the Ancients), is a popular UMS game created for Warcraft III. StarCraft compared to Warcraft III, does not focus on heroes as much, and heroes or units do not have the same experience gaining mechanic as Warcraft III, making it difficult to imagine how a game like DotA could be reproduced for StarCraft. Nonetheless, after chatting it up with our devs, we found out the ability to allow heroes and units to gain experience is built into the Map Editor, though it will not likely be in single player or standard multiplayer. In addition, those units can also be toggled to have the ability to carry an inventory, which is also a characteristic needed in UMS maps such as DotA. With those two additions, we can rest assured that our clever community modders can handle the rest in creating some awesome custom games.
Will you finally be able to mix and match terrain types instead of being stuck on jungle, twilight, etc?
[Dustin Browder] Yes terrain texture is mixable now. Also tilesets are also mixable. [Brett Wood] Essentially, you can define your own tileset in the editor, something that wasnt really supported even in Warcraft III.
Will the new StarCraft II Map Editor support text coloring, unit coloring, player "12" (i.e. neutral player) units?
[Dustin Browder] Yes, all of these features will be supported.
Will maps be larger than 256x256?
[Brett Wood] The maximum map size will still be 256x256, and we have no plans to increase that.
Will the new map editor support locking maps? People hate losing credit for a map.
[Dustin Browder] Yes, we are planning to support this feature. We hope that this feature will give the modding community more incentive to create their own original maps.
Will the new map editor support "square" terrain building as well?
[Dustin Browder] Yes. In the editor, users can adjust the footprint of buildings to whatever shape and size they like.
Going along with out monthly discussion topic about map making requests, we've sought to get more answers to help direct these upcoming discussions.
Chat with Devs: Brett Woods is back with us to answer our community map making questions. We cant stress enough that StarCraft II is going to have immense potential in the UMS (User Map Settings) area, where we hope to seriously empower the community with the tools you need, to create some awesome gaming additions to StarCraft II.
As always, feel free to give the Devs and I a w00t if you are enjoying these batches!
1) Will it be possible to code the game so map makers can make maps where people can stop incoming spell/missile?
This should be possible through customized ability data and/or triggers.
2) Will we have selectable male/female of every unit?
No, we don't have plans to include male and female versions of each unit.
3) Will we have the option to give players the option to change weapons in-game?
While we don't have any plans for a specialized interface for this, it would be possible using the highly flexible ability system.
4) Will you guys link multiplayer maps, so mapmakers can make multiplayer campaigns?
Yes, we do plan to support multiplayer campaigns and linked maps.
5) Will all buildings stand alone and also can we have the ability to disable tech trees?
The tech tree will be fully configurable through customized data and/or triggers.
6) Will research or firing a skill in a certain location be part of the tech tree enabling, for example Stim Packs could be researched to enable a Factory?
Yes, the tech tree and upgrade system will be fully configurable from the editor.
7) Will it be possible for AI to be commanded to research a skill, perform an upgrade, build a building at a location, build a unit at a location, retreat from a location?
Yes, there will be extensive AI scripting support.
8) Will mapmakers have the ability to set weather that can change the terrain and interrupt gameplay for players? Is this for anywhere or in a specific location?
Weather effect technology has not yet been finalized. However, even if weather effects do not affect gameplay normally, it would be possible to drive both the desired weather effects and associated gameplay effects through triggers.
Chat with Devs: Batch 39 focuses on the development of StarCraft IIs Map Editor and I got a chance to chat with our Map Editor Designer, Brett Wood. Brett was able to answer quite a few of our community map editors below. Furthermore, he wanted to also add that the StarCraft II Map Editor will improve upon the World Editor from Warcraft III in every way, with several new features such as having all abilities in the game being data driven. Brett Wood elaborates here on what it means for all data in the game to be data driven:
[Brett Wood] Lets say you have a cool idea for an implosion type of ability that will rapidly shrink down a targeting unit, then cause an energy shockwave that damages all nearby units within a certain area. Since there is no standard ability with a shrink-down effect, in Warcraft III youd have to resort to some fancy trigger work to achieve this effect. In StarCraft II, this kind of effect can be set up completely in the data files, and you could make the entire ability without having to use any triggers or scripting at all. Generally speaking, setting up abilities and effects will be easier through data customization than using triggers, although there will definitely be a learning curve there as well.
1) Will the new map editor support placing of traps, doors, and other things commonly referred to as doodads in unorthodox situations? (ie doors, auto guns, wall traps in a jungle map) Yes, any object defined in the data files can be placed on the map, regardless of which tileset it is normally associated with.
2) Will the new map editor support extended upgrade values? (ie, 30 upgrades) Yes, upgrades are arbitrarily extendable, as they were in Warcraft III. In addition, upgrades will now be downgradeable via triggers as well (by using a negative value), which was a very common request in Warcraft III.
3) Will the new editor still support all the other ideas currently implemented in StarEdit? This question is a bit vague. As far as I know, everything the original StarCraft could do, StarCraft II can do.
4) What additional features will the new editor have? How much time have you got? Very broadly speaking, the biggest improvements over Warcraft III will be found in the data editor, where literally every game database file is exposed for modification, and in the trigger dditor, which now features the ability to define custom functions and libraries. That said, virtually every aspect of the editor has at least some improvements over Warcraft III/StarCraft.
5) Do you plan to take ideas from third party programs and update the editor frequently to meet the demands of the map making community? Absolutely. We are very much committed to supporting the map/mod community as much as possible, and well be keeping an eye on the forums and updating the editor as often as we can to incorporate new suggestions.
6) Will be a tool to transfer WC3 models to SC2? (battle.net) -Ragnarok_X No, there will not be, as StarCraft II is built with a totally new engine.
7) Given that we know the Roach regenerates faster than normal, will players be able to change the regeneration rates for Zerg units? (battle.net) DrakeClawfang Yes, all regeneration rates can be easily changed.
8) Will players be able to give units Protoss shields or Zerg regeneration that don't normally have them? ie, a regenerating Zealot, a Ghost with shields, etc. (battle.net) DrakeClawfang Yes, you could create a Roach-Zealot hybrid if you would like. Many passive abilities can be interchanged similarly.
9) Is the new StarCraftII map editor able to make our own 4th race by combining 3 races different looking and ability etc. together? even more combining with some new units from the editor? (battle.net) -cS)beta Yes, custom races are fully supported, including the ability to choose them from the game lobby while playing melee maps, as long as the mod defining the race is loaded.
1. Does it still use the JASS language, or perhaps an upgraded version of JASS? StarCraft II uses an entirely new scripting language, which we’ve called Galaxy. This language is very similar to C, and anyone familiar with programming in C will have no trouble picking it up.
2. Is the language event-driven or object-oriented? The language itself is not object-oriented, although most of the native functionality is based around operating on game objects.
3. In comparison to the Warcraft III Editor, how much more, if any, can the GUI of the game be edited (it was extremely limited in Warcraft III)? The in-game UI layout is externalized in data files to a large extent, however there is no editor support for working with these files. So it will be possible to customize the game UI, it just won't be a user-friendly process.
4. Are there new noteworthy functionalities in the Starcraft II Editor, or will the new editor just have general improvements? I can’t think of a single editor feature from WarCraft III, large or small, which has not been improved in at least some way for StarCraft II.
5. Will the ability to communicate among triggers, for instance via actions or conditions, be improved in the new language? One significant new feature of the Trigger Editor is support for custom function definitions, including actions and conditions. This means you can create your own actions that are built up from other actions (or custom script code), then use those in triggers just as you would any other action.
6. How does "Hero" support differ from the Warcraft III Editor? Or is it practically identical? We’ve been working hard to create a hero system that is even more flexible than WarCraft III’s. For example, map makers will have the ability to define any number of custom attributes that modify a hero based on its level.
7. Will there be a public API for the programming language? As with WarCraft III, there is a large set of “native” functions representing game functionality that can be accessed through scripts. If this is what you mean by “public API”, then yes.
8. Will there be improvements on the "Garbage Collector" for the new language? For example, in JASS all local variables need to be set to null at the end of their use, and certain data-types need to be removed from the game (such as Locations) at the end of their use to avoid memory leaks. Galaxy features a robust garbage collection system for all native types, which is a huge improvement over WarCraft III (which technically did not have a garbage collection system at all). The script memory leak issues from WarCraft III will be a thing of the past.
Q. Are you guys still working on the Map Editor; and if so, what features are you planning to incorporate into the final piece? A. Yes. We're still working on the Map Editor and currently working on the publishing system. We intend to release an early version of the editor during the beta so the map-making community can get a head start creating their own maps. This is going to be a stretch for us to pull off, but our hope is to get it out before the end of April.
Q. Is there support to build symmetrical maps in the editor, if so, does it include rotational symmetry and odd player numbers? A. You can build whatever types of maps you want in the editor but there are no methods of auto-mirroring parts of the map.
Q. Can we expect to have new maps or the map editor in the beta soon? A. Yes. We will be adding a few new maps as we continue to release patches including a few 3v3 and 4v4 maps. Additionally, we are hoping to release the map editor to the community sometime in April.
Q. Will it be technically possible to recreate a Defense of the Ancients custom map complete with ladder and matchmaking? A. You will be able to recreate the map and we are looking at different ways for community maps to become part of the ladder and matchmaking.
Q. Does map publishing also store any extra resources (sounds, graphics, etc.) specific to the map, or is this a limitation? A. Yes. If you add art or sound to a map, it's stored in the map and is therefore downloaded with the map once it's published. Long-term we will be adding support for custom mods where other maps can depend on a single mod pack. For example, if the community wanted to build a "Classic StarCraft" mod, they could do that and share it online and then many maps could be built that depend on that mod.
Q. Can we expect to have new maps and/or the map editor in the beta soon? A. We are going to release some new maps for 2v2 specifically pretty soon. We are seeing problems with terran+terran teams on some of our maps and we are interested in testing a fix that involves changing the map pool. We will release the editor during the beta if we get it ready in time.
Q. Currently the Map Editor has a small variety of unit/item models for mappers to use. Will there be additions to usable models? A. Yes. Currently the beta is limited to objects ONLY in the beta, which is a limited number of tilesets and no campaign units or objects. There will be a much larger set of models and assets for mappers to use at launch.
Q: Will be be able to use original units for the map editor before release? A: No. The beta editor will not include campaign units prior to release.
Q: Will the map editor be revised to be more newbie-friendly around release? A: We have plans to put some new user help files online and additional help text, but overall the editor will not get many more newbie-friendly options as making custom maps is a pretty technical endeavor and there is already a lot of great information appearing all over the web to help with more complex development.
Q. Getting custom script into maps is currently complex. Are there plans to implement Galaxy scripting directly into the editor? A. There are currently no plans for Galaxy script editing in the editor itself. However, through the Import Manager it should be pretty easy to add in your scripts as necessary. Are you having trouble doing it that way?
Q: Can you detail how the map publishing feature is going to work? A: Sure. Map publishing will allow the user to store a few maps or mods associated with their account. You can choose to publish a map privately which will not display the map in the custom game list when you open it up, but you ca invite your friends into a game on the map to help you test your map and ideas. Once you decide the map is ready for the rest of the community to play you can publish it publicly and then the map will be available for the rest of the community to see and start playing games with.
Q. (tai) - Is there an easy way to call a unit in the map? For example, if in a trigger I want to have a condition "Triggering Unit == Marine," but not a marine that's already on the map or something that uses "unit in unit group," "last created unit," or some other function that does everything except have a general statement for any marine. A. We're not entirely sure of what you're asking but we’ll take a stab. If this doesn’t help you out, please feel free to post again and provide a little more context so that we can pin point what it is you’re trying to do.
If your trigger is intended to target a Marine that has just been created, then the "issue order" to "last created unit" is actually most likely the reference you are looking for to get that Marine. As an aside, you would want to use the "issue order to unit group" and "last created units" if you are spawning multiple Marines.
However, if you're looking to avoid using "last created unit," or it doesn't work for you based on how your triggers are structured, then you could use the "unit enters region" event and set the region to "Entire Map". Combined with the "Triggering Unit == Marine" condition, that would cover any spawning cases.
If you are looking to get a unit that was spawned previously and is now necessary for something else, then you actually would want to use "Unit from Unit Group" and the "Units in Region Matching Condition" function to narrow it down to the specific unit. There isn't a running list of units on the map that you can simply pick from once things are in full swing; you have to filter it down somehow to get exactly the one you want or be able to get that marine off of a specific event.
We'd also recommend storing any unit that you want to find later to a global variable if it is important.
Q. (Jumby) - Not sure if this is the right thread but, how do you make it so you can build on ramps in the game? Thanks. A. Great question! Building placement, meaning where you can and cannot place a building, is governed by that unit's footprint which can be modified in the Footprint data type. The "Placement Check" and "Placement Apply" Layers of a footprint dictate where it can be placed, and what kind of effect it has on pathing and other footprints once it is placed. A ramp is considered a "No Build" location, which is considered invalid by footprints by default. What you'll need to do is uncheck the "No Build" flag under the "Invalid" flags of the "Placement Check" Layer for that footprint.
As a side note, once you do this you will be able to build your buildings ANYWHERE. You will probably want to flag "Ground - No Spawn" flag under the "Invalid" flags, as well. :) This will prevent you from building your buildings on other buildings (no matter how much Xzibit may want you to do so), and on cliffs.
And, as a final side note to that previous side note, the edges of ramps are considered cliffs. You will only be able to build on the terrain in the middle of a ramp.
Q. (Zealot) - Can anyone tell me how to make place units that join you when you touch them (e.g, in Belly of the Beast, the Dominion Soldiers)? It seems to be a different method than in the original SC editor. Also, how the heck do I place Resources (min. fields and Geysers)? I'm totally lost in this new editor! A. As posted by Gaius: http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/topic/608631413?page=2#23
I've only started using this editor, but if it has similar triggers to the SC1 Editor and doesn't allow you to flag units as "Rescuable" like in SC1, I would simply make a Region/Trigger combo to give all units at <location> owned by player <neutral player> to player 1. Sorry I don't know the specific strings to reference but I assume that they're not too difficult to find. Hope this helps.
What Gaius said is correct. The most efficient way to do this would be using the "Rescue Unit/Rescue Unit Group" trigger and specifying the unit/units to rescue. Additionally, you may want to use the "Unit Enters/Leaves Range Of Unit" event. It would make the process much simpler!
Q. (Warheart) - Does anyone know how to make units and buildings smaller than their normal size when placing them on the map? A. To reference Gaius' post once more: http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/topic/608631413?page=2#23
Go to the Unit info in the Data Manager. In the bottom-left window in the Data Manager scroll down to the Actors section and click on the Actor tied to the unit's appearance (ie. for Ghost it is 3rd one down titled Ghost (Ghost.)) After you select the Actor, scroll down the list of values on the right until you get to CActorModel_Scale and change the value from 1.0 to whatever you want. Voila!
Gaius is once again correct! The Actor data for that unit can be used to scale it. Additionally, there is a "Set Scale" trigger you could utilize, and the Model data can scale it as well (including introducing a random scale). As for scaling a unit in the terrain editor, like you would with a doodad, that is not possible.
Q. (Ash) - Do you guys have any intention of adding a "beginner friendly" mode to Galaxy Editor that more closely matches the power of the Warcraft III World Editor? Lots of great maps came from fairly inexperienced mappers who are being shut out by the complexity of the current editor. Any news regarding changes to make it more user-friendly would be greatly appreciated. A. Making the Editor more user friendly is a noble goal, one that we've actually accomplished several times during development. With great customizability comes great complexity, unfortunately. It can be overwhelming at times, but, like many things in life, most of the intimidation comes from the fact that it is unfamiliar. Again, as an aside, we are kicking around a couple of ideas for addressing the intimidation potentially experienced by a new user to the editor. :)
Q. (Ravensword) - Simple question, how would I make it so a unit didn't have to turn all the way around to attack? Sort of like the diamondback or a turret I suppose. If theres a way, please tell me! A. Weapons have an "Arc" field that govern the field of fire for a weapon. As an aside, the "Arc Slop" field governs the firing arc allowed once a weapon is already being fired at a target. Basically, it's how wide a target can move before the firing unit reorients itself with the target. This is useful for channeled weapons (IE: the Void Ray) so that it doesn't break every time the target shifts even a smidgen.
Q. (Torrasque) - So I'm trying to use the map editor to make a battle cruiser have interceptors, load units like the Hercules, warp rifts like the mothership, and deployable turrets like the raven. Any tips would really help. This map editor is waay more complicated... A. Fortunately, what you're asking is pretty simple! Just add those abilities to your unit. So you would first add "Carrier Hangar," "Queue (5)," "Hercules - Transport," and "Raven - Place Auto Turret" abilities.
Then you would need to add command card buttons for those abilities so that you can order the unit to use them in game. I'm sure if you fiddle with it for a minute or two you'll figure it out.
Q. (Kaelmis) - Do you plan to fix the order of dependencies? If you load all 4 at the same time, which most new people do, the campaign usually doesn't work. Basically, people have to know that the order of dependencies matter (I don't see why it should matter), and the default arrangement you give them doesn't work so they get all confused: "I loaded the campaign dependency, but it didn't actually load the dependency...." A. Dependencies should work correctly in 1.1.0 and will receive additional improvements in later patches.
Q. (Kaelmis) - Can you make the item system better? When buying from a shop, it seems like the items don't always enter the hero's inventory, but get dropped on the ground. When a hero dies, he always drops his items. I am sure that is nice for some maps, but others want heroes to keep their items on death and making a trigger do that isn't always perfect. A. Heroes dropping items when killed will be fixed in 1.1.0 and will also have their items stored in banks.
Q. (Kaelmis) - I see data field to share a fraction of kill experience with nearby players, but what about kill resources? A. We’ll look into adding support for this in a future patch. Good idea :)
Q. (Kaelmis) - Is there a way to modify the mover for a specific unit, not the entire unit type. The only way I have found to modify the mover is through the catalog set value trigger but that would affect all units of the same type. A. We try to limit per-unit attributes for performance reasons so it's not likely that you will be able to change the mover for a specific unit unless there is a strong need for it. It can already be changed with upgrades and CatalogFieldValueSet, so there is already some flexibility available. Feel free to provide more justification if it's really important for your project.
Q. (Kaelmis) - I have an item shop that I want to sell hero specific items. How do you make requirements of these items based on the player trying to purchase the item, such as if that player owns a specific type of unit? A. We'll look into adding support for this in a future patch.
Q. (Pan) - I got a question that I've been trying to figure out since the beta: does anybody know how to change cliff heights mid-game (triggers, actors, abilities, etc.)? A. Changing cliff levels during run-time would require significant changes and we would only add support for this if there was a strong need for it.
Q. (gamecreator) - What's the proper way to load one published map from another after victory? A. This is currently not supported, but we are planning on adding features for multi-map campaigns in future patches.
Q. (gamecreator) - I meant to also ask: how do you transfer data between two maps (like which upgrades you took or who lived or died)? A. You should be able to use the Bank system to transfer data as long as the maps are published by the same author.
Q. (Mak) - As well, why is it so buggy? It crashes a LOT, and if it doesn't crash, the maps created make SC2 crash. A. Please file bug reports for reproducible crashes. Fixing these type of issues is very important to us.
Q. (Tyde) - Is there a way to change the requirements of an ability with triggers? Say the Overlord's Generate Creep ability? A. You can't change the requirements directly, but you could create a separate ability and control which was shown on the command card. Requirements have both a Show and Use section, allowing you to set up different conditions for whether it's shown and whether it can be used.
Q. (Bibendus) - Are you going to fix the keyboard/mouse control lag? 90% of custom games are ruined by this. A. We will be improving keyboard and mouse control in a future patch, but we can't match the responsiveness of an FPS game with an authoritative server. Keyboard-based unit movement should be as responsive as issuing move orders with the mouse after these changes.
Q. (Bibendus) - Are you going to add missing triggers that existed in the wc3 editor like change terrain cliff height, change terrain texture, revive unit and tons of other things I don't remember? A. Specific missing triggers may be added as needed or as suggested by the community. We can't just copy-paste the code from Warcraft III, so we'll only add triggers that provide a lot of value to mapmakers.
Q. (Bibendus) - Are you going to add a feature to store banks on server so they can't be viewed/edited/corrupted by users or concurrent maps? A. Bank protection will be added in a future patch to allow mapmakers to prevent users from modifying their bank data (optionally).
Q. (Bibendus) - Actually it's impossible to make a good custom sound and music looping layers mixing because ingame timers are imprecise. Are you going to fix that? A. You should be able to layer different sound files for in-game music using the Soundtrack data. Can't really help more without specific details of the problem.
Q. (Enofel) - So basiccly that basic layout of my map is a huge circle, which I want to be circular perfectly and exactly in the center. How would I make this? A. You can turn on the grid in the View -> Show Grid menu to help line it up perfectly. We'll look into increasing the max brush size since it does seem somewhat arbitrary.
Q. (chriscisso) - We should be able to rename any Id on duplicated or copied units. A. There was a bug preventing ID changes on duplicated units until the Editor was reloaded, but that should now be fixed in 1.1.0.
Q. (chriscisso) - We should be bale to edit data on any unit regardless of were it came from, I cannot seem to edit the liberty units, if I am missing a setting let me know. A. You should be able to edit Liberty data, except for certain cases where you have the "Display All Object Sources" option enabled (it's the second button next to Data Source dropdown). Basically, you can't edit data except for the top-most source, which is not obvious to the user and we are looking at ways of improving this feature.
Q. (chriscisso) - If we overright images in our map, make sure they always are used in Test maps and On Battle net for the creator, other users don't have this problem, but creators of the map do. Cacheing Issue maybe? A. If you could enter a detailed bug report for this issue we will look into it.
Q. (chriscisso) - When we go into a property menu there should be a filter option for lists of items so we can just display custom items and such. A. We're looking into adding a way to filter huge dropdowns since they are a bit unwieldy at the moment.
Q. (Mephs) - Is there a validator that can check the number of charges on an ability left? A. This sounds useful and we'll look into adding support for this in a future patch.
Q. (Benoit) - Also, is there any way to tint a unit with a color, and also to make it bigger? A. You can change the tint and scale of a unit by modifying the Actor's Events field and adding a new event that will send Set Tint Color or Set Scale.
Q. (Mak) - Is there a way to order units to go into the Nydus Worm and then come back out again? A. You can order the Nydus Canal to load and unload units through triggers: Issue Order Unit: Nydus Worm (Canal) [28.50, 32.50] Order: Order Targeting Unit Ability Command: Load (Nydus Network) Unit: Marine [28.61, 29.45] Queue: Replace Existing Orders
Q. (Wraith) - How do you assign priority of minimap icons (i.e. so my watchtower will be on top of, not below, my units)?? A. Currently there is no way to change the rendering priority of minimap icons, but we'll consider adding a priority field in a future patch.
Q. (molster) - A trigger sending an actor message has a character limit in its field! If I try to type "<s val="Kicker_Refinery">+5</s><IMG path="Assets\Textures\icon-gas-terran.dds" height="32" width="32"/>" Then only the following would actually be sent to the actor "<s val="Kicker_Refinery">+5</s><IMG pat" A. There was a bug preventing the SetText message from accepting strings larger than 40 characters. This will be fixed in 1.2.0.
Q. (DHo) - Is it possible to turn a dialog box in a text box for players to type in? I reckon that Dialog- Edit Box is what I need however doesn't seem to work at all... A. Trigger edit boxes were temporarily disabled for the editor's initial release, but should be functional in 1.2.0.
Q. (Trigor) - When and item goes into a Hero inventory, it is indexed based on the order it was put into the inventory. ... This seems very counter intuitive to the inventory system and I don't understand why it would be designed in this way. Does anyone know how to work with this? A. You should be able to set the item to a Unit variable and use it as a parameter to the Inventory functions to find which inventory and slot it's in. There is also a function to query the index but unfortunately our trigger library currently doesn't expose it. You can work around this by using the UnitInventoryIndex function in custom script for now.
Q. (Jibekn) - Do you plan on unlocking the ability to manipulate the command card catalog entry? I, as well as many other mappers, desire the functionality of having equipped items grant abilities to the equipped unit. However, this is impossible after crossing the 32 ability threshold, due to not being able to modify the command card on the fly. A. There is a cost (performance and development time) for each field that can be upgraded. We'll look into either allowing command cards to be upgraded or increasing the maximum number of abilities.
Q. (AnonTwo) - Is there any way to tie an ability to activate on a right click? A. You can make certain types of abilities (unfortunately not Blink) activate on right click by setting the Smart flag on the ability. We'll look into allowing more flexibility for smart commands.
Q. (Toran) - Is there a way to dynamically load the wireframe image for a unit or actor in a trigger? A. You can dynamically change the Actor's wireframe using upgrades or the Catalog Field Value Set trigger. We'll look into reusing the Upgrade UI for this trigger, which will allow you to easily see which fields can be changed.
Q. (Roy) - How can I detect the texture/terrain of a specified point? A. We'll look into adding this in a future patch.
Q. (Reynold) - OK, i just got a little problem about the editor. The problem is ... it loads very very slow, i need to wait for 30 or maybe 40 seconds to open a new map. A. We're aware of certain areas in the editor with less than optimal performance and will be working to improve them as time is available.
Q. (NuneShelping) - From what everyone knows so far, it is impossible to use this functionality without using the native UI; that is, there is no way to trigger the "Placement System". We suspect this is because this particular system is handled client-side, but I digress. A. You're correct that this is currently handled asynchronously and adding a trigger to enter placement mode would be not be a trivial task. We'll do our best to support this in the future or provide sufficient alternatives.
Q. (nickmp) - the prob is this:i need tychas' shrreder gernade discription to account for level up spell bonus damage. A. Tooltips can dynamically display data values using a tag like <d ref="Effect,BonesTossGrenadeDamage,Amount"/>. We're adding UI in 1.2.0 for inserting these types of tags. There is also the info tag which will dynamically display information for a unit based on which fields have the InfoTooltipPriority field set. For example <info id="Marine" types="W,D,A,B,Un,UpP,UpR"/> will display the types of units a Marine can attack along with information about his abilities and upgrades. (W=Weapons, D=Detectors, A=Abilities, B=Behaviors, Un=Units produced, UpP=Upgrades produced, UpR=Upgrades Received)
Q. (NuneShelping) - What are "console commands"? A. Console commands are tools that we use internally to debug the game. We're working on exposing more of our debug tools without making the game more vulnerable to hacking.
Q. (Zaraf) - I would like to hear from Blizzard with regards to what exactly the differences between Modal and non-Modal dialogs are. A. Modal trigger dialogs currently aren't implemented and we're planning on adding support for them in a future patch.
Q. (SiNiquity) - What's the proper way to utilize Catalog Is Field Array? It takes 2 parameters, Field and Scope. A. The Scope is an entry type like CUnit, and Field is a field like AbilArray. For example, CatalogFieldIsArray("CUnit", "AbilArray") == true.
Q. (Eternal) - How will patches effect the custom maps already developed? Will it change within the dependencies? Will it override the unit if it has already been altered? Will it override a unit if it has been unaltered? More importantly, will it at all jack up our map? A. Balance changes will only affect LibertyMulti, but bug fixes in a patch may change Liberty data. So generally custom maps will not be affected by patches unless you have LibertyMulti as a dependency. When you override/extend data from a dependency, the map only stores the difference between the map data and the dependency data. The fields that are most vulnerable to being broken by a dependency change are array fields that only have specific indexes overriden. We've worked a lot to ensure that custom maps won't be broken by patches and will try to improve this in the future.
Q. (Tordecybombo) - Any chance of allowing us to convert texts to strings? If not, any chance of allowing us to get some sort of player information? Such as the player's name or the player's character code as a string? A. It's intentional that there is no text to string function or text comparison, in order to localize the game without requiring that every user have every language installed. Player Name returns a text value since computer controlled player names can be localized. We'll look into adding functionality to get a player's name as a string in a future patch.
Q. (StKerrigan) - Does anyone know how to get the Charge counter to display for weapons? A. This can't be done currently but it's a good idea and we'll consider adding it in a future patch.
Q. (CutMeOwn) - Why do maps sometimes act diffrently when you test them with the test map button vs when you upload them to battle.net A. We're aware of an issue with dependency load order when maps are played on Battle.net and are working on a fix for the next major patch.
Q. (Rorax) - Will it be possible in the future for an attachment, to be attached 'by point'. A. We'll look into adding support to attach two actors at separate attach points in a future patch.
Q. (Turel) - Is there a validator to recognize when you cast any spell? I need something like this to remove a cloak behaviour whenever a unit or hero casts Any spell . A. You can accomplish this by combining the Unit Compare Order Count and Unit Order Queue validators. You want to set the behavior to disable if the order count is greater than 0 and the order that's queued is not move or attack.
Q. (Turel) - Currently the veterancy share filters are bugged, meaning they share to enemy from your kills, The filters simply just dont work. A. Veterancy share filters will be fixed soon along with other improvements like gaining XP from kills made by a unit that doesn't have a veterancy behavior.
Q. (Turel) - Can i get a validator to prevent items from being purchased when your inventory is full? A. I believe you could use the Unit Order validator to validate that the unit can issue a Take command. However we'll also look into adding validators specific to inventory functionality.
Q. (payne) - Why don't you allow map-makers to literally draw custom regions? A. We're aware of the limitations of the current region shapes and are planning on improving this in the future.
Q. (payne) - Why don't you give map-makers more tools to customize the No-Fly Zones? A. No-Fly Zones are not intended to be as flexible as ground unit pathing and were added to prevent air units from clipping through tall doodads. We may extend it in the future based off the needs of our designers and feedback from the community.
Q. (payne) - Why don't you allow map-makers to detect if a unit is within a region instead of just letting them detect if a unit entered or left it? A. Use the Unit in Region trigger function to check if a unit is within a region.
Q. (ZeroAme) - Can you please add support for users to create/use more then 3 cliff heights. A. We'd like to allow more than 3 cliff levels for map makers and will add support for it if we have time.
Q. (ZeroAme) - Would it at all be possible to make it so water can be bent or painted almost like terrain so that we can have a river that say goes from a body of water, down hill, levels out and then back into another body of water. A. Our current implementation of water is optimized for rendering. It would be much more flexible if water was a more important part of StarCraft. To achieve the look you are describing, it would probably be best to create a custom model.
Q. (ZeroAme) - Is there any way to make a mod that would allow, or map that is larger then 256x256 and would it be playable on b.net? A. The game is optimized to play 256x256 maps and increasing this limit would affect performance as well as require significant development time. We're aware of the desire to create larger maps and would like to support it but it may conflict with other needs.
Q. (Riley) - Could you please add an ability flag that will allow an auto-cast ability to interrupt a directed attack order? A. Could you more specifically describe the problem you are trying to solve? We could support if it was important, but adding a flag like this wouldn't be trivial amount of work. You also might be able to emulate this using triggers.
Q. (Khalint) - Can we please get the ability to hide units and doodads by player, and perhaps hide terrain in a region? A. We'll look into adding support for per player actor visbility. Generic per player actor properties would work too but may require too many changes to the current system.
Q. (Ardnived) - Is it possible to easily rotate doodads in three dimensions for the purposes for terraining? The only way that I have found is through Host Site Operations, which I can't seem to get to work anyways. In warcraft 3 we had Roll and Pitch which was reasonably easy to work with, but I cannot find anything similar to that in the Data Editor. A. You should be able to rotate a type of doodad by using Site Operations, but we are also considering adding support for per-placed doodad pitch and roll.
Q. (PointBlank) - Why is there nothing to change unit attributes (Heroic, Armored, Biological) in the data editor, editing/adding more such as changing "Armored" to "Heavy" or adding another like "Immortal" A. You can rename the unit attributes in the text editor by modifying the strings that begin with e_unitAttribute. Certain attributes will still affect in-game functionality like the Structure attribute.
Q. (Wakeman) - Can you add some kind of "unit / ability creation wizard" to the editor in the future? A. We've considered adding a unit wizard to the editor frequently and have generally decided to focus on improving the existing UI for editing data instead. However, we're still planning on adding a simple unit wizard in a future patch.
Q. (Roanari) - How about triggers allowing you to change some of the properties of effects? A. You can already change certain fields of effects using the Catalog Field Value Set trigger, or the upgrade system. Let us know if there are specific fields that are important to be able to change through triggers.
Q. (Skittles) - (How do I...) Set animation speed for all animations. A. You can use the Set Time Scale Global actor message to control animation speed for all animations.
Q. (Skittles) - (Any plans to add...) Holding shift while painting in the terrain editor to make straight lines. A. We're planning on adding this feature in a future patch.
Q. (Aratar) - I can't seem to stop a tank's turret from doing its idle turning animation. I've tried removing the "fidget" property from the tank's owner and from the unit itself (Set Unit State). I also tried clearing its animations and stopping baseline animations... it's still spinning its turret! :O Same goes for Missle Turrets or Auto-Turrets. A. You can control the idle animation for turrets by modifying the Fidget field for the Turrets data type. This is separate from the Fidget field for the Unit data type.
Q. (Aratar) - Is there any way to use data objects (like images, sounds) from a mod in a map that has that mod set as dependency? I can see the objects in the editor, but once I run my map, the objects aren't there (images don't display, sounds don't play) A. We're currently researching this issue. Maps should be able to use assets that have been imported into a custom mod dependency.
Q. (Aratar) - How do I make portraits move their lips in transmissions? The "talk" animation just makes them shake their heads. Is it possible to make the lips move in sync with the subtitles? A. You can set up facial animations in Sound data with the Facial Animation and Facial Group fields. These refer to animations available from a .fxa file which is specified in Model data with the Facial Controller field. The easiest way to pick facial animations is to open the Previewer, add a portrait model, and right-click the portrait model tree view item to Add Facial Layer. Then you can right click the facial layer to view which facial animations are available. Once the data is set up, your portrait will play the facial animation when you send a transmission using that model and sound.
Q. (Aratar) - When I make a UI dialog and then put a portrait inside it, the portrait is underneath the whole dialog frame... how do i make the portrait render on top of it? The "Set Portrait Channel" function seems to be the answer, but it's not doing anything :( A. You should be able to fix this by calling the Set Portrait Render Type trigger to render the portrait in the LDR pass. The game UI is rendered in two passes. HDR is rendered first which generally includes all 3D elements (world, console, portraits). LDR is then rendered on top of that, which contains all of the 2D controls like the dialogs you can create through triggers. Changing the portrait to LDR will allow it to render on top of the dialogs but you will lose certain effects only available in HDR
Q. (Aratar) - Some doodads have different textures based on the tileset that used. Is it possible to switch their textures somehow? Example: Rock doodads - I'd like to use their Char texture on the Mar Sara tileset (along with using the normal mar sara rock textures) A. To swap an Actor's textures to a specific tileset you can send the Texture Group Apply message in response to the Actor Creation event.
What’s happening here is that Rocks have their Model data entry configured to automatically change their textures in response to the application and removal of various “texture props”. This behavior is turned on by having at least one item the Texture Declarations field. Each tileset has a prop associated with it such that any model with textures declared will automatically use the correct textures for that tileset.
Whenever a Model Actor sets its model (during initialization or a model swap), it internally sets the tileset prop with what the map specifies. But you can override the prop with the Texture Group Apply message to customize individual models however you want. Tileset props overwrite each other, so if the map sets the tileset prop to “aiur” and you specify “char”, then aiur gets replaced with char.
The texture props for any given texture are based off a combination of any texture prop names found in the texture file's name and any additional data configured in the Model or Texture catalogs. You can link a texture file to any set of texture props by adding TextureDeclares for the model or by adding entries to the Texture catalog.
Q. (Visual) - What are map sections and how are they used? A. In order to make it easier for multiple developers to work on a single map simultaneously, various map data may be assigned to a named "section", and data for given section may merged in from a separate map file without changing the rest of the map. Only certain components of the map data may use sections: Placed Objects (units, points, cameras), Regions, and Triggers.
Q. (Klishu) - I'm having a problem regarding beams. As far as I can tell, the bounding volume of a beam is around the beam's launch point. So, if I have a long beam, the beam disappears when the camera pans away from the beam's launch point. I suppose this is because the bounding volume of the beam moves out of the view frustum. I've tried changing the Visual Radius of the beam's model but I still cannot get the beam to remain visible. Is there any way I can prevent the game from culling the beam when it considers it out of view? A. There's no solve for this currently. The setting used to prevent the culling is in the asset itself and not readily available to modders. Moreover, while the concept of a fixed sized bounding volume works fine for models, it isn’t ideal for beams that could be fired across an arbitrary range. We’re aware of the issue and hope to have a solution for this problem in the future.
Q. (Malu) - So, copying doodads from one map to another or simply making a exact clone of a area is a pain since you have to enter all the height offsets manually for every single doodad you copy, is this intended or simply a bug? A. This is a bug that we hope to address in a future patch.
Q. (Duke) - Flag "Use line of sight" (unit parameter in data editor) limits unit`s sight radius to very small number that is not enough for my map. With this flag unchecked sight radius becomes right to it value but unit can see over cliffs this way =(. I need to see cliffs correctly but have sight radius more than it limited. Will this problem be fixed? A. Units using line of sight are limited to a small sight radius in order to optimize the vision system and it's unlikely that we will remove this limitation.
Q. (Duke) - Is there a way to rotate turret actor of unit? I know there is an action "set angle of actor" or something like this, but i can get only actor of type Unit from unit, but not the turret actor. It will be very good if someone tell me the way my tank always focusing his turret on target, even if i use action "make unit face angle" - because now this action breaks turret rotation and it focus target again only when unit stops rotating. A. The only way to point a turret at an arbitrary location is to create an invisible dummy unit and a dummy weapon that doesn’t do any damage for that turret. You can then attack the dummy unit with the dummy weapon and move the dummy unit to simulate whatever turret motion you want. This isn't ideal, obviously. We'd like to explore more game-side turret behaviors and include the ability to have actor-only turrets that look cool, but don’t affect gameplay.
Q. (Andreyker) - How to combine different areas (R) into one? A. You can combine Regions by selecting the regions and then using the Edit -> Merge Selection command.
Q. (Andreyker) - Please add no-base resource squares in category "H". If there is a non-standard location of resources - may occur holes. Not so convenient to build. A. You can view the tiles near resources by enabling the Show Near Resources option of the placement grid. This is located in the Terrain Editor menu: View -> Show Placement Grid (Ctrl+Shift+H) -> Show Near Resources.
Q. (Robbepop) Do you plan to integrate add event functions for the gui? At the moment you have to use ugly custom script code in a gui trigger to make dynamic events for triggers - that's something you could improve for the galaxy gui. Are there any plans that you will add features to make variable array lengths dependent on constant integer variables? A. We would like to support adding dynamic events through the GUI as well as array sizes based on constant variables.
Q. (Goa) Is it possible that in the future you will add a trigger, which will able to tell what time did the map started (year month day hour). It will enable map makers to make "real real time" maps. It would enable to make a whole new type of maps, kind of like those browser based mmorpgs, which are really popular now days. A. We will look into exposing real time to map makers if it's a simple change that could allow many new types of gameplay.
Q. (Jackolas) Question about timer windows: will you (blizzard) add the option to set the point where you put the Timer window. like we have with dialogues. atm we can change the position of the dialogue window relative to the centre, top left, top right, etc. but we don't have this option for timer windows. atm we can only change the location relative to the top left of the screen. this creates problems with different screen resolutions and makes the timer window kinda unstable to use. A. We are aware of the limitations of the current Timer and Leaderboard windows and would like to improve this in the future.
Q. (Ash) Do you guys recognize the lobby teams not matching in-game as a problem? And if so, is there any time frame for a fix? For instance, if I have four teams of two in the lobby, and the host shuffles players around, then the game will assign player numbers according to the order they joined instead of what shows in the lobby. A. In a future patch we will be adding a map option that causes the player slot to match the lobby slot, similar to how it worked in Warcraft 3.
Q. (SiNiquity) Are actors required to be named after the unit which they are attached to, or is it merely convention? A. Unit actors are generally associated with a unit through the Unit Name token, but we do follow a naming convention that simplifies this relationship. We may be able to expose new triggers that will help determine which actors could be created for a unit since the game already caches this information.
Q. (Ragnar) Are there any plans to improve the debugger's output for errors? A. We are adding many new features to the trigger debugger in the long term. In the short term we will be exposing additional debugging tools that we use internally.
Q. (ProzaicMuze) Are there any plans to make Footprints more user-friendly? A. We will be addressing a few issues with the Footprint editor in the next major patch. If you could provide detailed reproducible steps for the bugs you've encountered, we can make sure that they are addressed in the future.
Q. (ProzaicMuze) The Validator Unit Compare Field is very hit or miss. ... Would you consider making a UI for this validator similar to the upgrades UI that compiles a list of all the fields for the specified unit? A. Absolutely, we would like to add support for picking fields to compare through the editor instead of having to type in a field path.
Q. (ProzaicMuze) Are there any plans to improve the current tooltips and add more to those fields that lack a description? A. We are working hard to provide more and better documentation for the Data Editor specifically, but also throughout the rest of the editor.
Q. (ProzaicMuze) Are there are plans for allowing drag and drop organization of events or mass selection (and the use of the delete key)? A. We frequently discuss improvements that would make the Actor Editor easier to use. Simple tweaks like multiple selection and hotkeys are a strong possibility. More involved improvements like documentation for each term and message are also being considered long term.
Q. (Stark) Would it be possible for us to get a new actor effect that lets you shake the camera? A. We have long term plans to integrate Actor with Cameras so that this type of effect would be possible.
Q. (BEARAND) Why do "Supplies Made" and "Supplies Used" functions exist under the "Player Properties (Get)" preset, but not under "Player Properties (Set)"? A. Game systems that support changing data values tend to be more complex. This is a case where we sacrifice flexibility to achieve other goals and is unlikely to change unless needed by our designers.
Q. (thenk) In order to create customized abilities, will you consider adding the ability to modify the CBehavior.Chance field with Catalog Field Value Set? A. We have made the Effect Chance fields upgradeable in the next patch which should make it possible to avoid duplicating objects just to change this field's value.
Q. (payne) Are there any ways to set the collision region of units a rectangular instead of a circle? A. Our pathing system treats colliding movable units as circles in order to achieve improved performance and smoothness. For units that are immobile like the Barracks, they can apply a footprint of almost any shape.
Q. (DarkRevenant) The entire map breaks and crashes in the middle of play when some internal memory limit is exceeded by the script. ... I ask for insight from Blizzard as to the nature of the scripting memory limit so that I might be able to make changes. A. Changes in the next major patch should roughly double the amount of memory available to galaxy scripts. We've read a lot of the feedback and issues that map makers have run into and have more changes planned for the future.
Some videos talking about the Galaxy Editor