[Mod Release] XLRP - 1.4b HF3 released (3030, 3049)

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May 12, 2019
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Yours was the first major rework that I ever used, and I liked it a lot. Currently using BEX, which is also spiffy, but would love to see yours up and working again.
 
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Shaper Mechanist

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Thank you for bringing your mod back from the near-dead.
It is awesome that the big mod packs are still getting updated.
 
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Status update 2021-03-12 New

XTRMNTR2K

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Good to hear you are doing ok! XLRP was the only mod I really liked. Thanks for taking another stab at it. When you get it going again, I will be definitely firing the game back up again and have some nostalgic fun!

Thank you so much! I'm glad to hear it. There are some great mods out there, no doubt, so that's a huge compliment! Though I like to think that XLRP fills a certain niche no other mod currently does. :)

Glad you're back.

I'll be interested to see your surprise revealed.

Thanks! Gotta say this place has grown unusually quiet. I understand a lot of people have moved on, though, and everyone else is over at Discord. As for me, I've always been more of a forum guy, I guess. :D

Ah yes, the surprise... Gotta tear myself away from the mod for long enough to take care of that, though!

Yours was the first major rework that I ever used, and I liked it a lot. Currently using BEX, which is also spiffy, but would love to see yours up and working again.

Thank you. While I haven't had the chance to play BEX myself yet, I've seen some great stuff from that mod. I wish I had the time to play all of them! Maybe when I'm mostly finished with XLRP and can get a full career playthrough behind myself I'll check them out one by one. Should be somewhere around the year 2100, I reckon?

Thank you for bringing your mod back from the near-dead.
It is awesome that the big mod packs are still getting updated.
My pleasure! To be completely honest, part of the reason I picked XLRP up again was pure selfishness. After all, this was the way I wanted to play the game, and I sorely missed it.

But yeah, I'm amazed by the sheer perseverance of the BT modding community. Some of them have been slaving away for years, in some cases almost non-stop it seems. No idea how they do it, but I'm all the more grateful for their dedication. :)


So anyway, I wanted to provide a small update on what's been going on.

As I said in my previous post, the mod was still in a very broken place. Lots of things weren't working, many Mechs were broken, even some basic functionality that was there before wasn't working anymore. Good thing I haven't been slacking off, then! In fact I spent most of the past two weeks - overall it's been almost three weeks now - working on the mod. As of today, most basic functionality is there again (at least from what I can tell). Things like ECM or even melee combat were completely broken (due to things having changed in other mods involved). After having spent most in-game time in Mechlab and Skirmish mode (not to mention the time understanding what's wrong and actually fixing it), these are now in a decent state.

With all the changes that were the result of updates to MechEngineer, CAC, CBTBE and others also came a few new possibilities and I also learned a trick or two. (Nothing compared to the cool stuff the other mod packs are doing, but hey, I'm not a code monkey! ;) )
So while I'm trying not to add too much stuff for the next update - that's for later - I plan to build upon and refine what's already there. And quite a bit of that has already been done.

With that being said there's still a lot of smaller stuff that needs investigating and fixing, not to mention finetuning and balancing. And once that is done I'll need to do at least some basic Career/Campaign testing. Based on experience I'm guessing my "stuff to fix"-list is going to grown again as soon as I start doing that. :D

tldr lots of progress being made, but still a mech-tric ton of things to do!


In case you can't tell, I'm having a lot of fun, though. (Occasional frustration over things I just broke aside.)
 
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XTRMNTR2K

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It's been a while since my last post, so it's time for another development update!

Most of the last week was spent adding quirks to Mechs. Since this is no longer possible via a custom chassis entry I decided to implement quirks as fixed equipment that occupies the topmost head slot (Life Support A). Since no other equipment currently uses this slot there will be no conflict. I have also tried to bring more order to the Mech Lab, so it is easier to recognize different categories of weapons and upgrades more easily. It was getting quite overwhelming in previous updates, especially in Skirmish mode.

Keep in mind these screenshots are all WIP and as such subject to change!

2021-03-22_1611_1.png2021-03-22_1613_1.png2021-03-22_1636_1.png

So far 60+ Mech chassis have quirks, which should cover most if not all Mechs that are planned to receive quirks for the next release. Since each of those chassis has different variants, the number of Mechs with quirks is easily in the triple digit range now. Additionally a few other cool things have been changed or added, like Variable Range Targeting. A pretty cool feature, actually, that requires player attention and optimized Mech loadouts to get the most out of.

As for the quirks themselves I drew inspiration from CBT, but that doesn't mean all Mechs are going to have their quirks from TT; instead I opted for a lore- and gameplay-friendly approach - in other words, quirks are meant to support a given Mech's intended role and provide unique options, while also fitting the lore. Did I succeed? You be the judge - when XLRP 1.5 releases. (Current ETA: Sometime before the end of the universe.)
 

TheGrue

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Most of the last week was spent adding quirks to Mechs. Since this is no longer possible via a custom chassis entry I decided to implement quirks as fixed equipment that occupies the topmost head slot (Life Support A). Since no other equipment currently uses this slot there will be no conflict.
Doesn't that mean that a critical hit to the head can disable them? Wouldn't it be better to add them to the general category where armor, structure and cooling types are defined. I think Roguetech or Battletech Revised took that approach and it worked quite well.
 

XTRMNTR2K

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Doesn't that mean that a critical hit to the head can disable them? Wouldn't it be better to add them to the general category where armor, structure and cooling types are defined. I think Roguetech or Battletech Revised took that approach and it worked quite well.
I haven't had that happen yet, but I think that behavior can easily be fixed by setting "effectsPersistAfterDestruction" to true (thanks for reminding me, though, I have yet to do that!).

Besides I haven't looked into adding a new general slot yet. Is that even possible? I haven't played RT since its earliest releases in 2018 so I'm not sure what it looks like in that mod, and MechEngineer by default only includes those three you mentioned.
 

TheGrue

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I haven't had that happen yet, but I think that behavior can easily be fixed by setting "effectsPersistAfterDestruction" to true (thanks for reminding me, though, I have yet to do that!).

Besides I haven't looked into adding a new general slot yet. Is that even possible? I haven't played RT since its earliest releases in 2018 so I'm not sure what it looks like in that mod, and MechEngineer by default only includes those three you mentioned.
I just rechecked, Revised moves the cooling system slot into the center torso from general and puts the quirk in it's place, roguetech moves all the slots into CT and uses the general slots for traits and other stuff like hand-held weapons. My mistake, I thought they added a slot. Would be cool though.. :-D
 

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I just rechecked, Revised moves the cooling system slot into the center torso from general and puts the quirk in it's place, roguetech moves all the slots into CT and uses the general slots for traits and other stuff like hand-held weapons. My mistake, I thought they added a slot. Would be cool though.. :-D

No problem! And thanks for bringing this up in the first place. :)

For now I have added the previously mentioned setting that *should* ensure the quirks remain active after a head crit. As an added benefit, using the topmost head slot also means you can see the quirk at a glance when selecting a Mech in the Mech Bay. :D
 

TheGrue

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Speaking of Mech Bay reminds me of something. First let me say, when XLRP was still around in the ancient times (hehe), it was THE mod for me because it struck the best balance between lore and tabletop rules, especially with mech engineer letting me screw around with mechs in a major way. But what always struck me as odd is that with default mech engineer you could just switch out reactor ratings at the wave of a hand (single slot component without much impact money- or timewise). I would think changing the reactor rating would need a full redesign and rebuild of the chassis, something that is way beyond most successor states' technical expertise, let alone a small mercenary company's capabilities, Argo or no Argo. Same goes, to a lesser degree, for endo-steel modification. I would imagine slapping on ferro-fibrous armor instead of standard would be comparatively easy, so no problem with that.
Basically, what i'm asking is, would you consider making the engine and core fixed components instead of modifiable? At least as an option, since my guess would be that i'm probably a minority with that request?
 

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Speaking of Mech Bay reminds me of something. First let me say, when XLRP was still around in the ancient times (hehe), it was THE mod for me because it struck the best balance between lore and tabletop rules, especially with mech engineer letting me screw around with mechs in a major way. But what always struck me as odd is that with default mech engineer you could just switch out reactor ratings at the wave of a hand (single slot component without much impact money- or timewise). I would think changing the reactor rating would need a full redesign and rebuild of the chassis, something that is way beyond most successor states' technical expertise, let alone a small mercenary company's capabilities, Argo or no Argo. Same goes, to a lesser degree, for endo-steel modification. I would imagine slapping on ferro-fibrous armor instead of standard would be comparatively easy, so no problem with that.
Basically, what i'm asking is, would you consider making the engine and core fixed components instead of modifiable? At least as an option, since my guess would be that i'm probably a minority with that request?

Totally understand what you're saying. :)

One of the things that I did in the mod was have endo-steel and XL engines as fixed components for those old SLDF-era Mechs you may find. Basically, the stuff is ancient and about as well understood as space magic, plus it's impossible to come across information (blueprints?!) how to properly remove that gear without destroying the Mech or rebuilt the Mech afterwards. FF Armor, as you said, could still be swapped for standard armor and vice versa.

That being said I think some people didn't like those restrictions too much. So as a compromise I intend to keep it as it was - have these things fixed for those true LosTech Mechs and removable for post-Helm Core designs. At least as long as I don't miss any of them, in which case it would be unintentional. :oops:

As for the reactor rating I'm a bit torn. I certainly agree that it's probably not a small task to remove the engine from a Mech. At the same time, however, having to find a replacement engine for a rebuilt (from scrap) Mech that has a missing engine is part of the Mercenary experience, especially during the succession wars era. So while it would understandably take away some of the extreme flexibility we currently have, being able to switch engines at will, that is, it would also make things somewhat easier because you didn't have to worry about finding a suitable replacement for a destroyed engine. Which is the reason I will probably leave it as it is (though I may play around with money and tech cost and make it expensive enough to actually matter :D).

As for making these things fixed, it would require a considerable effort to implement, especially if it was added as an option. One of the reasons I dropped any optional packages depending on owned DLC (aside from still being able to choose between 3030 and 3049) was that I absolutely had to reduce my workload in order to be able to actually finish the next release.

In any case it looks like I won't be bored anytime soon; last night I discovered that there had been considerable changes to itemCollections post-BT 1.6.2 which means I have decided to completely rewrite the store part of the mod. With all those changes that required major mod overhauls in the past I'm actually glad the game won't be receiving any more updates, to be honest. o_O
 
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Mabberton

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Seems like the easier thing to do would be to leave engine swapping in and let the player decide whether they want a "house rule" against it when they play. It is not like the AI will have access to this ability, so its balance implications are relatively limited (or at least as limited as any min/maxing of mech designs is).

Mike