JAF Team Expansion and Modding Details
We have 2 pieces of great news for you today. So lets get right to it!!
Chris Camfield is joining the Flashback Team
We are super happy to be able to welcome Chris Camfield to the Jagged Alliance: Flashback team.
Chris has worked on the implementation and design of several Jagged Alliance titles and ended up as lead designer on Jagged Alliance 3 that sadly was never released.
He will be joining the team as an advisor while keeping his day job at XMG Studios. Chris’ role will be to help us on essential pieces of implementation knowledge.
WHY were things implemented in a certain way in JA2. Not only HOW. The how could be deducted by most programmers by looking at the open sources.
Understanding the core mechanisms and how they were designed to fit together is essential knowledge to hitting the right balance once we add factions, better AI and other potential improvements/changes to the mechanics.
Establishment of Modding Advisory Team
In addition we are announcing having established a modding advisory and co-design team.
Currently this team includes R@S, creator of the Blue Sun Mod for 7.62 - High Calibre and DepressivesBrot from the 1.13-Crew.
We are also in contact with additional high profile modders to expand the advisory team even more.
Their role will be to work with us to identify essential modding hooks, directory structure definitions, design the templates for modding files and some proof of concept tests.
Having these great modders on board gives us the ability to not fumble the ball on mod support, and will make it easier for everyone to later potentially port their existing mods.
Details on Modding Support
Modding is a wonderful thing and has kept Jagged Alliance 2 alive for many many years. It is also something that takes time to implement right.
If we do not hit some of the higher stretch goals, then we can still support basic modding and hope for adding more options down the road.
Together with the modding advisory team we will prioritize the modding capabilities, that we from initial feedback have grouped into 3 areas.
1) Tweaking of configurations
For example being able to go into xml files to turn on/off line of sight via a boolean, or change the base movement cost per terrain.
2) Adding additional content
Having the ability to add a new mercenary, a new weapon or that “used condom” that you’ve always thought missing as a trash item.
3) Adding additional features
Coding new functionality like wind direction having influence on accuracy while shooting or alternatively altering existing calculations for damage models.
Exactly what is going to be moddable is something that is decided upon during detailed design and ongoing through development with the help of the modding-community.
Our initial thoughts are that we are able to support the first two options here with the minimum budget of our Kickstarter-target. This doesn’t mean the third option is skipped right away. If there’s some spare time in the end, we’ll take care of it as well or will try to introduce this option after the release of the game. In addition to that we are also in talks with other modders who wrote awesome tools for other games and as they will have access to the Alpha version of the game, they will be able to start writing their tools if they feel there’s need to do so.
We have to see how far we can push this with Kickstarter and our own money. Right now, we have to be a bit selective as we don’t know where we will end up yet. This also means that functionalities that have not been planned will drain resources from other parts of the game, and this is not our intention, as we want to deliver a game worth the name Jagged Alliance.
We hope you understand this point, because most of us have been part of a modding community at one point or another, it's important to us! And we will give our best to support it wherever we can and with whatever we can.
We are really excited for the new forces joining the team!
The Full Control JAF Team