A module is a playable set of resources, which can be
- A campaign that players can embark on
- An extension to a campaign
- An extension to all campaigns
Technically, an "add-in" is the same thing as a module at present.
A campaign is a standalone adventure. The term can refer to the official campaign (OC) or community-made adventures which appear in game under Other Campaigns. The OC is also called the Single Player campaign (though in fact all DAO campaigns are single player).
A module can inherit resources from other modules, as specified in the module properties.
Every module can use resources from the Core Game Resources module.
The Single Player campaign inherits the Core Game Resources, and has other resources of its own. In game, Single Player resources are available to community extensions of the Single Player campaign, but not available to community campaigns.
Extensions can be as simple as (say) a magic ring that's available to all campaigns, or as complex as a new chapter of a community campaign (with any number of additional areas, stories etc).
Bioware's official DLC is an example of an extension.
Working with a Module
- A standalone campaign is pretty straightforward, in that you need at least a starting Area and a Waypoint in which the Player spawns. You can use any Core Game Resource while making this Module, basically the premade Houses, the Monsters, mostly anything. But the Area still has to be created, NPCs placed, Dialogues written etc..
- An extension needs at least one entry point that hooks into the main campaign, using a technique called PRCSCR.
Modular File structure
The toolset manages folders, so the builder doesn't often need to know where resources reside, but it's occasionally useful.
Modules are organized in the file structure as such the Game can read the correct files, and to allow a modular environment. The Singleplayer Campaign and Core Game Resources use a fixed set of File folders.
The Singleplayer Module and the Game Core Resources respecivtly (this is the actual installed content) are located in:
*DragonAgeInstallDir*\modules\single player\ *DragonAgeInstallDir*\packages\core\
These base Folders accompany all resource types specific to that Module. However this is a fixed set, and should be of value to modders only when extracting Resources.
New modules and their resources are exported to your Documents\Addins folder. This has a Module sub-folder for that module alone, and a Core sub-folder for any Resource to be accessible by all modules. It looks like this:
*My Documents*\BioWare\Dragon Age\AddIns\*Modulename*\module\ *My Documents*\BioWare\Dragon Age\AddIns\*Modulename*\core\ If you change any Single Player or Core resources, they end up in these folders: *My Documents*\BioWare\Dragon Age\modules\Single Player\ *My Documents*\BioWare\Dragon Age\packages\core\
Once exported, the module can be tested in game. The Builder to player tool can be used to zip the files in a format which other players can install.
The game will usually read resources from any Override folder, using the Source directory priorities to resolve conflict if two resources have the same name.
|Client Script||Client scripts simulate user input|
|Include In Resource Build||This was used internally in the development of Dragon Age to determine whether a module in the designer database was automatically included in builds.|
|Name||The name of the module, used internally in the toolset title bar and as a fallback in the game if a description string ID has not been set.|
|Script||Event script assigned to the resource|
|Starting Area||The area that the player starts in when the campaign begins.|
|Starting Waypoint||The waypoint within the starting area that the player appears at when the campaign begins. This property is not used if the module is an add-on to an existing module.|
|StringID Begin||The line number in the talk table at which this module's text strings begins. Set to a very large random number to reduce the risk of conflict between modules. When building as a team, each builder needs to work with a different range and be aware of a potential bug.|
|StringID End||The end of the talk table line number range allowed for this module.|
|StringID Last Used||The last line number used by this module in the talk table. Determines the line number of the next text string created.|
|Type||Only the "Addin" type is supported by the end user toolset. The name "Addin" can be misleading, it's possible to create a stand-alone addin that appears as a new campaign.|
|UID||"Unique ID", this is not seen by the player. It is used in various configuration files and as the name of the directory that the module is stored in when exported.|
|Content Module||If this module is a PRC "offer" module, this indicates the module that it is offering for download. This is not likely to be used outside of BioWare.|
|Description||This property can't be set directly, it displays the contents of the description string ID set below.|
|DescriptionStringID||A string ID pointing to a short description of your module|
|DisplayName||This property can't be set directly, it displays the contents of the display name string ID set below.|
|DisplayNameStringID||A string ID pointing to the name of your module.|
|Extended Module||If the module is an add-on to an existing module (such as Single Player), select it from the drop-down list here. When this is set the module will be added to addins.xml when it is exported.|
|Image||An icon that's displayed in the installed content page|
|Presentation||If the module is an offer this bitmask indicates the various ways that the "hook" for the addin will be presented to the player in-game.|
|Price||The price of the module in points. This is only meaningful for modules offered by BioWare.|
|Publisher||This property can't be set directly, it displays the contents of the publisher string ID set below.|
|Rating||This property can't be set directly, it displays the contents of the rating string ID set below.|
|Rating Description||This property can't be set directly, it displays the contents of the rating description string ID set below.|
|Release Date||The date the module was released in its current form|
|Version||The version number you've assigned to the module's current state.|
|⊟||Localization and VO Production|
|Requires VO (Voice-Over)||[Undocumented]|
|Created By||User who created this module.|
|Created On||The date it was created on.|
|Last Modified By||The user who last modified the module.|
|Last Modified On||The date it was last modified on.|
|Variable 2da||2da file containing a variable table. Only the values in the table can be set and retrieved by scripting.|
|Variables||Opens the variable table for editing, allows the initial values of the variables to be defined.|
The module_var variables 2da contains a number of variables that are only used by the original main campaign for Dragon Age. Most of these can be ignored when creating other modules. In fact, the vast majority of the variables in this table are only referred to by core scripts; most modders will likely not need to worry about these.
|AI_PARTY_CLEAR_TO_ATTACK||int||0|| 0 - non controlled followers should not attack yet. (can still run other non-offensive AI actions).
1 - non controlled followers are allowed to attack.
|ALISTAIR_FRIEND_TRACK||int||0||A variable related to one of the main party followers in Dragon Age: Origins.|
|APP_APPROVAL_GIFT_COUNT_*||int||0||A set of variables, one named for each of the possible main party followers in Dragon Age: Origins, for tracking how many gifts they've each been given.|
|APP_APPROVAL_RATE_*||int||0||A set of variables, one named for each of the possible main party followers in Dragon Age: Origins, for tracking their approval score.|
|APP_RANGE_VALUE_*||int||0||A set of threshold values for dividing party member approval scores up into "friendly", "warm", "neutral", "hostile" and "crisis".|
|AREA_LOAD_HINT||int||0||Related to the text shown on the load screen between areas|
|CIR_FADE_FOLLOWER_*||int||-1||A set of three variables related to a specific plot within the original campaign of Dragon Age: Origins|
|CLIMAX_ARMY_CURRENT_AREA_BUFFER_SIZE||int||0||A variable related to a specific plot within the original campaign of Dragon Age: Origins. The current number of living army members in the current area of army deployment.|
|CUTSCENE_SET_PLOT||string||NONE||Cutscene function will store a plot flag to be set after the cutscene plays.|
|CUTSCENE_SET_PLOT_FLAG||int||-1||Cutscene function will store a plot flag to be set after the cutscene plays.|
|CUTSCENE_TALK_SPEAKER||string||Cutscene function will store a talk speaker who will speak after the cutscene plays.|
|DEATH_HINT||int||0||related to the text shown on the screen after the player's death|
|DISABLE_FOLLOWER_DIALOG||int||0||Make followers trigger soundsets instead of dialog when the leader is not the hero and clicked on (for example: climax defense)|
|MODULE_COUNTER_*||int||0||Three generic "counter" variables|
|NTB_*||int||0||Variables related to a specific plot within Dragon Age: Origins|
|ORZ_*||int||0||Variables related to a specific plot within Dragon Age: Origins|
|PARTY_LEADER_STORE||object||0||stores the object ID of the leader that was chosen for being a leader, before it is switched (used in the climax)|
|PROVING_FIGHT_ID||int||0||Variable related to a specific plot in Dragon Age: Origins|
|RUNSCRIPT_VAR||string||When the console command "runscript" is used, this variable will contain a string with any parameters that the script was given. The script will need to retrieve and parse these itself.|
|WM_STORED_AREA||string||last used area - will be triggered when returning from a random encounter|
|WM_STORED_WP||string||last used transition wp - will be used when returning from a random encounter|
|WORLD_MAP_STORED_PRE_CAMP_AREA||string||The WIDE OPEN WORLD area that was visited last. Used when leaving the camp so we can know if the player returns to it from the camp and then just directly transition there instead of travel.|
|WORLD_MAPS_TRIP_COUNT||int||0||counting the number of trips the player did in the world map, on any map in the game. Used to determine when to trigger random encounters.|
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