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Info about testing and DSMOD, DSLOAMOD, & console

My modding learning is coming around nicely (actually, it's a bit like drinking from the fire hose, but enjoyable nonetheless), but I find it tedious to go through the testing routine of save/tank/copy/launch/retrace steps through several regions. Not to mention having to do some temp stitches to shortcut to my region to test.

Is there any way to make (unit/region) testing easier? I've read brief bits about how DSMOD &/or DSLOAMOD can be used to test, and I've searched high and low for more info (how to use, etc.), to no avail. The HELP shows me commands, but I have no clue what to do with them. I've also seen mentioned in this forum the term "console"; not sure if that's just another term for DSMOD/DSLOAMOD.

Incidentally, DSMOD fails to launch, with many errors; but DSLOAMOD launches without issues, perhaps because my installation was from the retail LoA set. Just a WAG.

Also, I know there's a way to launch DS with a command-line parameter to jump directly to a node (not the "map" parameter to automatically create a starting hero onto a specified map - that one works well for me). I thought I had stored that info *somewhere* on my systems, but now can't find it, and I can't find it online either. IIRC, I had stumbled onto it quite by accident. Any ideas?

Any suggestions to ease testing would be greatly appreciated. What's your testing process like? Thx

So yes, long story short there is 100% a way to do all the things you’ve listed using DSLOAMOD. I did that stuff pretty extensively when I was making maps and mods. As far as teleporting goes, if I remember right, you have to set predetermined points in Siege Editor, or maybe editing the .GAS files themselves (I can’t exactly remember), to set points that you can use the teleport command for. Maybe something like hotpoint? I had to look through the GPG maps to figure this out, so if you’re into reverse engineering that could be a place to start. In the console using DSLOAMOD you would write “teleport area_name”.

In addition, you can use a shortcut DSLOAMOD executable with edited launch instructions to load right into a node and/or spawn point. However, I don’t remember how to do this off the top of my head. I seem to remember there being a steam forum post somewhere about this, but I could be wrong (it’s the same method as setting different resolutions and stuff, I just don’t remember the command itself).

Lastly, to your point about DSMOD v DSLOAMOD, I could never get DSMOD to work either, so you’re not alone there!

One more point just to mention, I had this stuff set up in my mods, specifically the teleport function. I also remember there being something finicky with setting spawn areas based on certain levels in multiplayer, so just as a side note while I’m on the topic you’ll probably have to edit those in the actual .GAS files, if you ever want to do something like that.

Sorry for the disjointed information. Hopefully someone else who is still got it fresh can reply but in the meantime I hope this at least somewhat helps.

Thanks Dungeon Siege Fanatic for all your suggestions. Just out of curiosity, you say "... when I was making maps and mods." Aren't you still? Just posted some recently, no (The Island)?

Anyway, I remembered where it's mentioned how to jump directly to a node on a map: Siege University 208b:Non-Player Characters. Couldn't be easier; specify the target node GUID like this:

DSLOA.exe nointro=true map=[MyMap] teleport=n:[nodeGUID]

Keep in mind that this drops the party directly onto the specified node, so anything that needs to be acted on normally prior to getting there (triggers, quests, etc.) is NOT acted on. For example, it can teleport the party in a room with a locked door for which they have no key and from which they cannot escape, or into a region where expected moods are not set because they were not triggered, etc.

As you mentioned, teleport is also available at the console. The syntax that worked for me is "teleport n:0xnnnnnnnn". I only had one member, but the Help says to mention only one member. I suppose that defaulted to my single party member, and I figure it should work similarly for a larger party (i.e., specify only one member).

I've seen many websites that mention the multitude of command line switches (for resolution, etc.), but none that I could find that mention the "map" and "teleport", which I feel are not switches but directives.

Hotpoints - Perhaps you mean use points. I've not experimented with those yet, but it's on my list... waaaay down the list.

That said, I'm still flummoxed at the paucity of information on DSLOAMOD and DSAnimViewer. I'm still hoping to find (or someone to pipe up with) some handy documentation, personal findings, notes, etc. - something that would shed some light on those tools. Maybe it's just common sense or common knowledge, but I don't seem to have either at the moment.

I just received two thick books on gmax, in which there are a few chapters on Dungeon Siege, so perhaps I'll be able to pick out some useful info (mostly SiegeMax, meshes, textures, rigs, etc., but that's to be expected from books on gmax).

If anyone else has info on DSMOD/DSLOAMOD, DSAnimViewer, and any other tools that many modders seem to use and favour, but for which info is rarer than pope spit, I would *greatly* appreciate you pointing me in the right direction.