View Full Version : Seamless addon/mission management
Apr 29 2003, 23:21
I'd like OFP2 to literly be able to tie itself into the OFP community. The whole mission/addon thing needs to be completely seemless, painless and error free for the many folks who just want to PLAY the game.
OFP could have an integrated addon/mission management system that ties into the OFP community and taps into the resources of volunteers from around the globe. People who run OFP websites could volunteer their webspace/server resources to host thousands (or just a few) of the addons that are available.
When a mission maker compiles his/her mission, information about the addons used in the mission are stored in the pbo file. When OFP loads the mission, it checks for needed addons and if they are not installed, it connects to one of the participating sites in the community and downloads the appropriate files.
A central server (Hosted by BIS) could keep track of each of the voluteer's servers, and what files they host (read: Napster), redirecting people's OFP to whichever server/servers have the files they need.
The addons files would be identified by name, and CRC checksum, so there would be no doubt as to wheather or not the proper addon is being downloaded.
Possible requirements for a system like this:
* When a mission is compiled, the editor would have to do a better job of figuring our what addons are used, by parsing through scripts and triggers to check for "addweapon" type commands.
* Addons would have to follow some sort of standard and only be hosted by this distributed system if they met the standards.
Just dreaming BIG here. http://www.flashpoint1985.com/ikonboard301/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif
May 18 2003, 01:28
Expanding upon this idea..the technolgy to make it happen is free for the taking. The site below contains everything you guys would need to connect everyone in the OFP community and make addon/mission/update management seamless.....
Check it out..
May 18 2003, 09:39
That is a great idea... I just hopes that BIS makes it...
But if they does a system like this for the uppdates allso, they will have to make all uppdates backward compatible (I'm not really sure of that word) so it doesn't matter if you have a newer version of the game, you can still play on a server that have an older version... http://www.flashpoint1985.com/ikonboard301/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif
May 18 2003, 12:00
Seamless to me means that OFP doesn't do ANY addon checking when it starts up, other than maybe for its own addons.
Everything else only gets checked when a mission.sqm is read and the addons listed are verified.
Simpler than that (for OFP players) I don't think there can be. http://www.flashpoint1985.com/ikonboard301/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif
Aug 22 2004, 13:35
It's an old thread but it seems the much appropriate then ...
I aggree with you about a database of addon manage by BIS.
Don't know in which period and with which army ofp2 will be used. but it will great if BIS anticipate tha fact that some modders create addon which is not the same period or army.
I means some things like this in each addon :
- period (50 60 80 90 2000 ... or none)
- country (US, UK, Germany, France .....)
- picture of the addon (to help mission maker to do a choice)
Then when a mission maker would like to create a mission in 80 period with UK vs US (why not ? http://forums.bistudio.com/oldsmileys/smile_o.gif ) only addon with this period and those country are shown.
An other things that can be great is to have more than 2 country in one mission taht's mean more than 2 camp with the capability to do alliance in game (great for dynamic mission)
Thx to read me
Aug 23 2004, 06:28
This is a superb idea.
It would totally remove any confusion over addons.
Aug 23 2004, 12:07
re: Seamless addon/mission management
It seems logical to me (i.e. maybe not true) that a really good mission should still be a good mission whether it was intended for America vs Russia, or units altered to become BAS rangers vs Tonali, or UKF vs whoever.
Good missions are lacking for quality units but not because of the lack of quality missions.
Could this be better managed?
At the moment, I download at work and play offline at home. Scenario - disaster, I've downloaded a mission but cant play as im missing one addon or another.
Mission templates are the way forward.
Start the mission - you get asked your choise of unit and opposition. Maybe even a choice of map. Maybe im told the mission authors recommended units. Maybe I dont have the required addons. Never mind, I use a slightly different one that I do have.
I can use the editor with a bit of patience, but I just dont think that it should be this tricky.
I dont think i've put this together very well, but its wet outside and im supposed to be working.
Just thinking outloud - I quite like MaxPowers suggestions too.
Aug 26 2004, 16:01
Somehow I don't think some 56ker brand new to the game is gonna tolerate downloading Tonal, BAS De/Ras, BAS Blackhawks, BAS Littlebirds, the DKM British Vehicle pack, and UKF DPMs for 92 hours to play one mission.
It's a good idea but it needs a confirmation system. It's doable, but what if someone's using a beta addon? How can the BIS server cope with different versions? How can the BIS server cope with a bunch of people downloading a hell of a lot of stuff at once?
Good in theory, I'd just like to see it executed without major problems. There are many barriers to overcome, AutoAddon in OFPWatch was a start, I assume this would be the final iteration, but servers are only so powerful...
There'd better be a way to turn this off, because I hate automatic downloaders http://forums.bistudio.com/oldsmileys/mad_o.gif http://forums.bistudio.com/oldsmileys/crazy_o.gif .
Aug 27 2004, 18:42
Before a good solution like that can take off, there needs to be more coordination and standardization between mods.
As a 56k'r student in a remote rural area, I don't mind having to plan a trip to find a free hotspot to dnld an addon. But when I have to download the entire pack again to pick up additional independent new models, or cpp changes, I'm probably not going to. And if there is a track record of that kind of project management, I'm probably not going to dnld their stuff at all. You can split the configs, shared data, and specific models into separete PBO's. Plus the reduced download sizes could reduce strain on hosting as well.
Any way, OFP needs dynamic ingame loading/unloading of addons. Maybe an option on the front screen, that pops up a list of addons you've "checked in" to a xml file with an external app like the preferences app. In game, the xml config would get parsed and a sanity check to make sure that file is there, and to flag dependancies. If you have broadband, you could check an option that would hit a master site, or sync'd replica, to see if there is a new version of any or all addons.
Additionally, you would want to make it so that you could call that dialog from the missions, mp, and editor sections as well.
I LOVE IT, I was just going to say that but I searched and I can't believe someone else thinks like me, AWESOME you are dude
I got "OFP watch" which is kinda a crappy addon manager which for me only works on one server "LOL" I tried to go to rts3 server and downloaded like 1.3 gigabites of stuff, and then when I connected, it just kicks me for no reason. saying missing stuff.
It would be GODLY if bis or codemasters or WHOEVER it is that's making these games I'm confused forgive me. game1 game2 AA. but if they had a OFFICIAL addon manager in the game that would auto download them if you didn't have them, i'd love it
Sep 9 2005, 17:52
Ouch, this is a year+ old thread.
Getting back to priorities. The community needs to structure their addons correctly, and plan for patching to allow this kind of integration. Addons At Ease is a step in this direction, but many addon makers find the dependency requirements too "inconvienient". Well if addons were structured correctly the mega mods would be 1~10% the size that they are now, and stuff would be patchable.
It doesnt do any good to make an autodownloader if the downloads are auto-clobbered.
It would be awesome to have a central server with all the addons. Maybe we could have that central server and make the same addons available on other computers around the world using something like bittorrent.
However, you also need to include dependancies in the database for each addon, so if you would want to download a mission, you get to see what addons are required. Maybe something like APT that Debian Linux is using. It would be great to have something like that for OFP. Every addon would have a unique ID and its version.
When using dependancies you could also have different versions in the same database. If you have 2 different addons and they each need a different version of another addon, you would be able to download them both. Also, better backwards compatibility could be added that way.
What should be added, what was already mentioned, is the possibility to search the database for certain things, like the period and country.
When you start OFP it could search the database for newer versions of each official file and addon. But it should also be possible to turn it off.
<span style='font-size:8pt;line-height:100%'>Edit: wow, I've been reading these forums for years, but never posted before :-|</span>
Sep 25 2005, 12:09
Funnily enough i have started programming a version of this.
Uses XML feeds from community sites to my server This includes the URL to the file, Description info, dependancies list and "Parent" i.e. if the addon is an update they are grouped together.
The app would be run outside of OFP but would inspect you addons folder and determine any updates or dependancies which are missing, then either display links to those files or just download automatically.
I am planning to build this with the ability to "plug" extra games into it without much work but flashpoint first http://forums.bistudio.com/oldsmileys/wink_o.gif
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