Update and Plans for the Modding Community

We would like to address our incredible modding community and hope to clear some things up, while also gathering feedback from you all. We understand that the frequent amount of patches to the game can cause frustration and hope that we can minimize this for the future.


2.1 Patch

In 2.1 we allowed character creation options to be referenced by a row name rather than an index. This should allow multiple mods to add character creation options without overwriting each other.

However, because the options are saved by index on the character, adding more options can mess up existing characters’ appearance. Thus server admins need to pay attention to mod order.

We will need to fix this, but it will then break existing appearances of characters on modded servers. So it’s a choice between breaking it now or breaking it later when we add more options from Funcom. Until we fix it mod order will matter when using multiple mods that add character appearances.

2.2 Patch

In 2.2 we are fixing the mergability of the MapDataTable which should allow multiple mod maps to exist at the same time. We are also working on some other features that we will talk about as soon as they finish development


Going forward we will increase testing to make sure most minor version updates do not require a new version of the mod dev kit. There will be some exceptions, for example if a major release caused issues with mods, but it is our goal to have the vast majority of hotfixes not require a new kit.

We also aim to send major releases out to modders as early as possible so you have plenty of time to download it, test your mods, and update them if required.

We would like to take this time to gather feedback from you all in the modding community. If there are ways we can improve support we would like to hear it, as well as any pain points you encounter. It is important to us to make this a more streamlined experience.

Thank you again for being an amazing community and bringing new ways to experience the game!


UPDATE 20/11/20
We have some unfortunate news about the MapDataTable change we had planned for 2.2. During testing we discovered that the implementation we chose to do for this feature increased the initial client load time by roughly 20 seconds which is far too long. We’ve had to pull the feature for 2.2 and will look at a different solution in 2.3. Apologies for the delay!

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Thanks for this update, Nicole.

And while I’m here-

Please don’t give too much oxygen to the reee.

Overwhelmingly, modders would rather you guys tend to the long-term health of the game first and foremost. This means giving consideration to all corners of the community- public server players, private server players, single player creative builders, modders, etc.

If that means some short-term breakages? So be it. I know that there is often a lot of heartburn around these updates, and I know that sometimes modders and players can get, uh, vocal about their frustration, but please don’t let that make you guys squeamish about doing the right thing. Most modders understand that we’re creating these mods on top of a foundation that sometimes needs to shift, and sometimes that means we have to react with patches.

That said, we will graciously accept any communication and outreach you’d like to offer. :3

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moonlight in Exiled Lands shines from opposite direction to moon

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100% agree with Nash here. While it can be frustrating when they happen in rapid succession, we know that you’re doing what you believe is right for the game overall.
I appreciate the hell out of you folks at Funcom, and keep up the work with a game that I’ve loved, and continue to love, since early access.
<3

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Hi Nicole,

As someone who was vocal about the stress that came with Siptah and 2.1, I appreciate Funcom acknowleging that it isn’t always a party for everyone. Personally for me it all just came at a bad time, so naturally I struggled a lot more than some, that’s not Funcom’s fault of course. Siptah was definitely sprung on us very suddenly, and I’m pleased to read that Funcom understands it wasn’t ideal for many people, 2.1 was certainly a bit better as we had about a weeks notice. The more warning the better - especially for those who work full time jobs.

Ultimately there are users in this community who are more than happy to cause chaos and upset, as well as become abusive when mods break and they can’t play the game and expect customer support from people who are just here to have fun and mod the game. This is definitely something to keep in mind, personally I am ever thankful that I have a kind community with people willing to spend hours a day helping moderate my Discord. I’m well aware that not everyone has that, and plenty of mod Discords are rife with disrespect and anger, which often ends up causing people to leave Conan modding. It’s sad to see and although Funcom has no control over the playerbase; I want to ensure they are aware that this happens frequently, and even more so when updates drop.

I only really ask that there is more transparency with updates; maybe prior to the release of a dev kit a written update (just some bullet points would do the trick), about what has been changed or why. This way we have more prep in our heads prior to getting our hands on the updates. I think this would help many people figuring out what needs to be done, ahead of time, and save time and stress potentially when releases are put out.

Thank you for communicating with us to the extent you do, and of course we all are thankful that Funcom continues to put time into the game, and that many of the devs are so passionate about it.

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Not a modder, but I talk with lots of modders and certainly am a mod user. While the most recent Modpocalypse did have plenty of folks pulling their hair out I do feel like, long term, you guys are headed in the right direction when it comes to supporting mods and making a playable game. I think you know that there’s a lot of people in the PC world who would not be playing this game at all were it not for mods. I’m definitely one of them, as is much of the overall roleplaying community. Supporting modders is the one major way you support roleplayers so anything at all you do to make their lives easier is appreciated by the rest of us more than you know. So all the things said and asked for above… yeah, all of that. Be good to our precious modders. Maybe even learn a thing or two from them. They’re pretty awesome.

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About the merging … i suggest that if you guys need to fix the vanilla part of the game if all your doing to the game is just tweaking number then i suggest a Free DLC call Vanilla … meaning this is where you can tweaks numbers without messing up the mods and things where you can just go hams with things. And let everyone else alone for a while til you feel it right to give dev kit the things.

DrNash is spot on! I am thrilled to hear that Funcom is looking to keep us modders in mind and strive to make our lives a bit less stressful. But indeed, overall most of us I think are most concerned with the health of the game, or as Nash said, you do what is best for the game and we will cope (or in some cases mod to undo/rewrite/circumvent!)

I know Funcom has been working hard to deliver updated Devkits ahead of actual release to give modders the opportunity to update, test and be ready for release. This has been a great leap forward! Alas since the release of Siptah, there have been a number of times where the devkit was delivered early, modders spent time updating, cooking and testing…only to have another devkit update drop pretty much in line with the release, forcing replication of all that effort and of course all the regular delays (and possibly rushed testing)

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Hi, Nicole. As most know, I’m not smart enough to mod and don’t use them in general, but wanted to thank you for the direction you folks are taking.

Too often mods are blamed for problems (guilty here, too) when it’s a general issue. Giving the outstanding modders a means of both stability and heads-up will go a long way to improve the time they spend updating and reduce (wow, eliminate?) the time to accommodate major changes.

Reduction of forum belching is a good side effect, but the main thing I like is improving the user’s experience with the mods and the game in general.

/bow

Regards

jim

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I think the primary issue for most modders since the Siptah release is the amount of broken references in the dev kit. Most Siptah related assets are missing from the kit. However, a lot of things are referencing those assets. Rather than directly referencing Siptah assets from base game assets, the base game assets should be fixed to be properly moddable and Siptah should work like a mod, not touching any of them directly. This would both fix the current issues as well as make more of the game moddable.

As it is right now, we are forced to modify the dev kit itself by gutting broken assets in many cases and creating placeholder assets in other cases. This is confusing to explain to less experienced modders and is not a maintainable practice. It also means less of the game is moddable than before Siptah because we cannot mod any of the broken assets without breaking Siptah functionality.

For an example of what I mean (one among many), The map UI currently references the Siptah storm which doesn’t exist in the dev kit. This means the map UI blueprint fails to cook which trickles up and makes mods fail to cook. So, modders have to strip out the references by modifying the asset in the dev kit. Why not have the map reference an interface which is not stripped instead? There are many such cases, and I think each case will require its own approach, but leaving these all unaddressed seriously hinders the entire modding community.

Please fix all broken references to stripped Siptah assets by doing things such as adding interfaces, inverting the dependencies and/or by being less aggressive with asset stripping. Thank you.

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If something can change, it will only change if discontent is publicly expressed and if the listener does not listen, a megaphone must be used.
Whoever has spoken publicly, who has complained, who has exposed himself instead of being a “yes man”, should not be apologized, should be thanked. So thanks to all the people who have made their voices heard, and very thanks to the Funcom managers who have decided to listen to it.
This is a great satisfaction.

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Hello,

Mods allow for admins to customize certain aspects of the game to attend to a audience.

This freedom is used in a lot of cases for building up the community and keep long term players interested.

However, i have seen some servers out there in discord who sell virtual items for real life money.Giving the players an advantage over newcomers.

Unaware myself i have joined one of these servers with friends to play there.The server is wiped monthly (to increase spending ofc.) and from day 1 you are a sitting duck vs players who have paid the server admin for thralls,weapons and armor.

If you look in the server list you can see that one of these servers has +400 unique players per week on average.
I remember starting with Conan Exiles and how i selected a server going online for the first months.“Highest amount of active players ATM” “Low ping & resetted just 5 days ago.” Lets goooo."

You dont have to be a scientist to figure out that after getting wrecked several times in a row i wanted to know how these players were levelling up so fast and had the best gear.(Many players will not do this.They simply quit the game because they think these players are cheating)

The point im making here is that these servers are very appealing to new players coming in, but they are not aware of the “pay to win” concept these servers are running.

The mod-community is great and they do everything for free.Some bad server admins are using the mods to make a quick buck and in the process destroy hundreds of new players coming in the game.

It might seem that this is not connected to frustration outed on the forums by players/admins. I can assure you that the ones who have to lose the most will work the hardest to prevent themselves from losing out on paid time or admins having to compensate players who cant play but payed to win.

Plz find these server admins and do something about them.They are destroying the community by using pay to win tactics and mods that were given to them for free.They cause a lot of frustration and anger within the community. What is then outed in the wrong direction because they dont want to talk about how they are cheating hundreds of players out of a good and honest fight.

Thank You

Wasn’t aware of this myself. But certainly I can see how it could happen. Surely making money off the game which remains FC property is in breach of a law or two some place? What need to happen is for there to be a “reporting” method built in… Oh wait we have 5 star ratings but that’s a bit anaemic on details.

Trouble is whose gonna pay to do the policing? Unless it can be shown that its cost effecting for FC to do it, they wont - arguably shouldn’t, though could beef up warnings about “unacceptable use” of the games material perhaps.

Right back to original subject:

The OP was drawn to my attention just the other night, and I would like to add my agreement that sits a very good post, explains much and eases my apprehension somewhat about FC’s care for he game and its attendant community’s!

But I also agree with @ArsGothica above: Coz enough folks yelled this was posted. Sadly the maxim “The squeaky wheel gets the grease” works here. To really improve its rep FC needs to drop posts like this BEFORE (like a week before!) such updates in the future if they want to really reassure folks like me. We had a weeks mega-hype for Siptah (LOL what disappointment that was - IMOHO) a factual concise and informative post like the OP would have garnered 200% more approval from the established community I feel even if they didn’t like the fact their fave mods would go through a troublesome time for a while.

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Yes yes yes thank you thank you thank you for this post! =D

I am not a modder, my brain doesnt work well enough for that! haha But I do only play modded and it does get frustrating and every update I feel terrible for the modders not just cos they have to go fix the mod but I can imagine how many players would react… not very nicely to them over it xD

I did know about some of this already though because someone actually mentioned about this in a discussion on the forums which is great that they were trying to explain about the 2.1 updates and the changes for modders so thanks to them for that if they see this!
But as I said in another post it should have been an official update about it cos not everyone was going to see that one discussion or actually listen to it since it wasnt an official statement on it so thank you so much for explaining this and in such detail too! It is awesome to see you guys updating the community on stuff like this because it doesnt only help modders understand but players too so just maybe it will ease alot of the frustrations every update since we know now that while its rough at the moment it will help in the long run xD

I do agree with Caswallon though, should be something that is posted prior or even when the update drops not a couple of weeks after not just because it will likely help ease the community and the frustration but also because I expect quite a few people have already gone back to not checking the forums so they would have completely missed this :slight_smile:

But overall THANK YOU! <3 This is awesome and I hope to see more updates and communication with the community in the future :slight_smile: “wink wink nudge nudge hint hint” xD

On a side note! @AtzerriGold I love RA! Omg the Fantasy version with the ears and the fae and and its awesome and I love it and and thank you so much for such a wonderful mod!!! You are awesome! <3

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Mmm this is a tough one to be honest, I never thought about how it affects PVP since I don’t play it >.>

But! Every popular private server I have been on PVE has had VIP/Donators (paid) kits and perks (not just on Conan either).

E.G. The DMT & EE mods both have mounts and pets spawnable by only admins which these are I do believe are stronger than vanilla pets and mounts and are often given out in VIP/Donation kits or these kits have ways for you to get them easier than if you dont donate to the server. It is not just pets and mounts used for this but was just an example from one server I played on xD This doesn’t really affect PVE like I guess it would on PVP servers though.

The problem here though is… most these private servers wouldnt even be around if they didnt have kits like this. High population servers arent exactly cheap and I suspect very few private server owners would be able to afford the cost by themselves. While some players will donate just because they enjoy the server, most players wouldn’t without it having perks.

I am assuming here though, maybe you mean’t something else though but I can see how that would be frustrating xD It is also quite possible that the server owner just didn’t realise how OP the donation perks were or went a little overboard with them and didn’t mean to make it so P2W :slight_smile:

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It would be helpful if the Show Servers With Mods selection was enabled by default in the server list.

The suggestion by @FightzGamer to change it to “Do Not Show Modded Servers” would be a good comprise.

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Note: I am not a native English speaker and if something sounds sarcastic in the following article, it is neither intended nor meant to be.

First of all I would like to thank you for taking an official step towards us and giving us the opportunity to comment on the topics. Surely this was also the case before, but rather on an informal level and - as far as my impression goes - absolutely in your spare time. Therefore, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your off-duty commitment to this community.

Therefore it is a big step that you are now following this path on a higher level. Communication is important, especially since together we help to improve the game and keep it alive.
Therefore more communication is the right way, but … but it should also lead to the fact that finally words also lead to deeds. More on this in a moment.

I’m glad that we will continue to make the DevKit available to us early so that we can adapt and test our mods in advance.
I can only agree with Dr. Nash’s statement. I accept it when something “breaks”, when it creates the basis for things to be fixed. We all benefit when the game runs as error-free as possible.

Now for the points I would like to see personally:

  • In the last updates we have been able to find out roughly and in advance what has been changed or what is changing for us. What is missing here is partly even more transparency. For example the change of the item table. For me it is necessary that I not only know: aha, there were changes to this table, but also that a new column is added here (the icon layer; and ideally that the new value in this column is an array of icons).
  • If major changes cause (or could cause) problems, hints are good on how to remedy this. With the hints mentioned in your post (e.g. reference as row name instead of an index) it is possible for us to solve it. - But not everyone can see or understand the general problems we will run into, see for example by recompiling the Granite files. Very often we are in the process of finding out things “backwards” by a lot of trial and error, which costs nerves and time. Everything that creates transparency here is most welcome.
  • We need a trial live version of the game version that is compatible with the DevKit update. You can’t test everything in the DevKit or some bugs only occur under “live” conditions, especially if there is any time or loading behavior. The deployment usually works, but so far not always and would also be a point that should be (further) considered in the workflow.
  • If the cooperation gets more of an official character from your side, I would be happy if we report bugs to you, so that we can get some kind of feedback. Maybe a Trello board would be a good idea for this? That way we could at least track a status. It is certainly frustrating when some modders take the trouble (and I’m explicitly not talking about me) to report bugs to you and analyze them intensively (as good as we can) and the bug is still not fixed by you or on the contrary is partly fixed by modders themselves (return-to-inventory for items with 0 HP). If there are reasons that speak e.g. against a fix (won’t fix), it would help us if we knew them, just so we don’t feel “ignored”. - So also here: Every bit of communication and information helps and can lead to mutual understanding.
  • Please check the log files and warning or error messages. There are a lot of messages that could be fixed “easily”. For example, in some table there is an “index” called “we” that does not belong there and spams the log. Somewhere there is also an array that refers to a faulty index. - Between all the “regular” warnings and error messages it is difficult for us modders to filter out (especially after updates) which of the messages we cause with our mods and which are “new”.

Just to make sure it doesn’t slide in the wrong direction: It’s not my intention that the documentation of changes kills everyone (if it’s more than 100 pages, I prefer an audio book, by the way; a little joke in passing). A good middle way should be found to ensure that you don’t have a significant “more” effort, but that we still get the transparency we need. But I think that in general these efforts for more transparency are worthwhile.

Now to pick up the point again when I talked about words being followed by deeds: It’s good to ask for feedback, but it would be a great pity if the suggestions you receive were to fizzle out without effect. Also in the Modders Discord good hints and feedback, but also error messages have been and will be given. As I said, I know that your activity there is rather unofficial in nature, but any official influence, especially in the form of feedback and interaction with us, is very welcome.

Please don’t be put off by those who also sometimes misbehave in tone. Those can be reprimanded and - if necessary - those who do not follow the netiquette can be referred to the discord server.

It is sometimes also difficult for us… there are a few modders, who have a lot of knowledge, a lot of modders, who have a lot of experience in their field and also a lot of modders, who are just starting. Especially if you put a lot of time into modding, it can be frustrating if suddenly your mod doesn’t work anymore and you don’t even know why. We have to download the DevKit update, check the DevKit to see if everything is still working, how it should work and try to find out how we can fix it. The exchange in the discord helps a lot, maybe one of the other modders is already one step further in “finding out backwards” how to fix something. We invest a lot of time in modding, sacrifice free time, sleep and also money (for software licenses, etc) to constantly maintain the mod and make it better. We voluntarily give support to players and users and some of us “get on our gums” (as we like to say in Germany; means: we’re not feeling well and we’re angry, irritated and/or frustrated). If we come to you with high expectations, it can happen that we let you know about our expectations and let our frustration get the better of us.

Of course, this is also unfair to you - so once again I ask you not to be discouraged. Communication is the key - and communication is the right way to continue to work together on our way to continuously improve the game and the game world and to enrich it with new things and functions.

At this point I would also like to thank all my fellow modders once again for their efforts and commitment in the community and your willingness to help, as well as for investing so much work, free time (and possibly money) in the mods to create these many little masterpieces and make them available to the community for free.

Thanks, you all are great.

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mmm… testlive?
also last modacalypse I tested renewed devkit compiled mods with not updated live game and it… worked, no error

but to add something meaningful, If someone on modding discord finds obvious error in your blueprint or makes a suggestion on how to resolve issue, please pay attention

If I remembered right there was a DevKit Version shortly prior to Siptah where we could not test it yet. As far as I remember there was a timelapse from ca. 1 week or something. Maybe I am wrong here.

Just wanted to state we need that continuously for future.

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So a long time ago in a galaxy far away… no wait… uhhhh… i mean there was talk a while back about a tool for appending Data Tables (it was developed by Scooper and passed off to someone else i believe) that was really close to being added to the devkit. Is there any news about this feature? It would help greatly towards mod compatibility.

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