Author Topic: [1] What is OXCE? And what happened to OXCE+ ?  (Read 10255 times)

Online Meridian

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[1] What is OXCE? And what happened to OXCE+ ?
« on: January 31, 2017, 12:31:38 pm »
First, if you don't know what OpenXcom is, you should read this article: https://openxcom.org/about/

Now let's define some terminology used below:
1. OG = original game, i.e. X-COM: UFO Defense / X-COM: Terror from the Deep (by Microprose)
2. OXC = OpenXcom (by SupSuper & Warboy)
3. OXCE = OpenXcom Extended (by Yankes & Meridian)

OXC is a re-implementation of OG, making OG more accessible on a wide variety of platforms available today.
The goal of OXC is to keep the game as true to the original as possible.
This basically means that:
 - all game mechanics are identical to OG (with very few exceptions, like better pathfinding)
 - GUI looks almost identical to OG (with several exceptions, like a new Memorial GUI)
 - there's only a few QoL improvements, mostly inspired by previous fan mods like XcomUtil (e.g. soldier reordering)

This is all perfectly in line with the goals of the project, so not a critique, but a praise!

OXC got popular also (or mostly?) because of the way the game "static data" is implemented. The attributes of various objects in the game are written in plain text files, so called rulesets. This allows everybody (read: also non-developers) to tweak various aspects of the game.

The possibilities of this modding concept were "limited" only to what's needed for vanilla, but with Warboy joining the OXC dev team (and with TFTD support), they evolved beyond that (we're forever grateful Warboy!). Still, there is a price to pay for such luxury (I'll let you figure out what it is on your own), so there's only so much OXC devs are willing to do.

And that's where OXCE comes into the whole picture...

---

OXCE (by Yankes, since 2014) started by extending the game mechanics giving modders more of this "luxury" stuff. At first it was additional ruleset variables, more recently it's about scripts, which not only change parameters/values, but also allow adding formulas and simple logic. For a long time, OXCE didn't change the GUI or add any QoL, with a few exceptions.

OXCE+ (by Meridian, since 2015) jumped in to fill those GUI/QoL gaps; and added a ton of new ruleset too.

In Q3/2018, OXCE and OXCE+ merged together and are now known simply as OXCE.

OXCE now offers extensions in all 3 major aspects:
 1. QoL (Quality of Life) improvements (filtering, sorting, searching, indicators, shortcuts, cross-links, and much more)
 2. GUI enhancements (GUI refinements to display more useful information, completely new GUIs, etc.)
 3. New game mechanics (tons of new concepts like custom experience training, custom visibility mechanics and so on...)

Most of QoL and GUI enhancements originate from my personal needs and ideas, although many other people have contributed too. Most of game mechanics enhancements originate from modders, working on their mods and asking for functionality to implement certain features not available in OXC.

Tip: If you're a modder looking for new features, feel free to share your ideas. If I find them "suitable", they will be implemented.

---

Which brings us to the summary:

1/ OXCE contains everything from OXC.

2/ The goals of OXCE project are:
 - to provide QoL improvements for players across the whole spectrum (vanilla players!, vanilla mod players, non-vanilla mod players)
 - to provide improved and new GUIs for players and modders alike
 - to provide new game mechanics... based on both new ruleset and new scripts

3/ The following are NOT goals of OXCE project:
 - we do NOT plan to re-implement OXC... features are only ADDED or improved, not removed or completely changed (that why it's called OpenXcom Extended, not OpenXcom Reinvented)
 - we do NOT plan to stop supporting vanilla game-play experience... most of the OXCE features are optional (either user options or ruleset options)... there are a few things (mostly QoL), which (for practical reasons) are not configurable, but the difference between OXCE and OXC is not bigger than the difference between OXC and OG.

Once you try it, you won't go back :P
« Last Edit: September 17, 2018, 01:55:01 pm by Meridian »

Offline Machiavegli

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Re: [1] What is OXCE+ and how does it fit into this world?
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2018, 08:58:50 pm »
The places where links should be in Meridian's OP are mostly filled with "FIXME": are there links for these subjects somewhere?  I'm trying to play with OXCE+ but I'm having a hard time figuring out how to use it.

Online Meridian

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Re: [1] What is OXCE+ and how does it fit into this world?
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2018, 11:40:34 pm »
In the meantime, the installation of OXCE+ is identical to installation of OpenXcom nightly.

Also using OXCE+ requires no additional skills or knowledge... if you know how to use OpenXcom, you know how to use OXCE+ too.

What is it exactly you're having trouble with?

Offline Machiavegli

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Re: [1] What is OXCE+ and how does it fit into this world?
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2018, 07:45:49 am »
I have installed OXCE+ and am playing it right now.  I have read about features of OXCE+ which I haven't been able to find, such as:

1.  Nightvision.  How does that work?
2.  Training facilities.  I would love to be able to raise some of the semi-permanent flaws of most of my troops.
3.  Med bays.  Having to fire a good trooper because s/he will be out for a month sucks.

I am, for better and worse, a big fan of modding games once I learn the basics. (Yes I play a lot of Bethesda games; why do you ask?) I see a lot of other similar stuff which changes OpenXCom talked about in the OXCE+ discussion thread but not appearing in what I've downloaded and am playing.  Is it just in X-PirateZ?

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: [1] What is OXCE+ and how does it fit into this world?
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2018, 10:33:36 am »
1.  Nightvision.  How does that work?

Press the space bar at night and find out. :P
Note that it's just a display thing, it doesn't change any mechanics - only gives you clearer visuals.

2.  Training facilities.  I would love to be able to raise some of the semi-permanent flaws of most of my troops.

You need to choose/make a building for training and add this to its definition:
Code: [Select]
    trainingRooms: 10
(or any number you like)

And also edit the soldier type entry and add something like this:

Code: [Select]
    trainingStatCaps:
      tu: 70
      stamina: 90
      health: 50
      bravery: 100
      reactions: 70
      firing: 80
      throwing: 70
      strength: 50
      psiStrength: 100
      psiSkill: 100
      melee: 80
This defines how much you can train the soldier in your gym.

3.  Med bays.  Having to fire a good trooper because s/he will be out for a month sucks.

This is a bit more involved, as there are more variables, but here is an example from my mod:
Code: [Select]
  - type: STR_SICK_BAY
    requires:
      - STR_SICK_BAY
    spriteShape: 1
    spriteFacility: 868
    maxAllowedPerBase: 1
    buildCost: 450000
    buildTime: 22
    monthlyCost: 30000
    sickBayAbsoluteBonus: 0.25
    sickBayRelativeBonus: 1.0
    mapName: XBASS_25

I am, for better and worse, a big fan of modding games once I learn the basics. (Yes I play a lot of Bethesda games; why do you ask?) I see a lot of other similar stuff which changes OpenXCom talked about in the OXCE+ discussion thread but not appearing in what I've downloaded and am playing.  Is it just in X-PirateZ?

Other mods I know of using OXCE+ are: WH40k, Terminator: Tech-Comm, The World of Terrifying Silence (TFTD mod) and my own X-Com Files.

Online Meridian

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Re: [1] What is OXCE+ and how does it fit into this world?
« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2018, 11:34:39 am »
I am, for better and worse, a big fan of modding games once I learn the basics. (Yes I play a lot of Bethesda games; why do you ask?) I see a lot of other similar stuff which changes OpenXCom talked about in the OXCE+ discussion thread but not appearing in what I've downloaded and am playing.  Is it just in X-PirateZ?

There is no single concentrated documentation of the modding features... yet... as a modder you have the following options:
- search the forum (I've described >80% of the features as they were implemented), this TOC might help: https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,4187.0.html
- reverse-engineer mods like piratez, xcomfiles, etc.
- ask questions on the forum or on discord channels: #modding on OpenXcom discord or #oxce_plus on X-Piratez discord

As a player:
- look at advanced options menu
- look at controls menu
- middle-click on everything
- read the mods' ufopedia articles

Offline Machiavegli

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Re: [1] What is OXCE+ and how does it fit into this world?
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2018, 08:41:06 pm »
EDIT by Meridian: <snip>

OK thanks.  I was under the erroneous impression that nightvision was a separate technology feature which allowed you to equip your soldiers with devices allowing them to see further at night.  Now that we're on the subject, would that be possible?  It would be a great feature to implement for power armor and flying suits, either built-in or separately researched.

I was about to write a bunch of questions about the training facility, but is there one already implemented somewhere?    That would make figuring it out a lot easier.

Again, thanks so much for your help!  I am looking forward to making my OXCE+ even better, and will check out the mods you have suggested.


--- posts merged ---


There is no single concentrated documentation of the modding features... yet... as a modder you have the following options:
- search the forum (I've described >80% of the features as they were implemented), this TOC might help: https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,4187.0.html
- reverse-engineer mods like piratez, xcomfiles, etc.
- ask questions on the forum or on discord channels: #modding on OpenXcom discord or #oxce_plus on X-Piratez discord

As a player:
- look at advanced options menu
- look at controls menu
- middle-click on everything
- read the mods' ufopedia articles

Thanks!  I was just hoping that there was a collected summary of OXCE+'s features.  Am I correct in surmising that many of the features I have been reading about are not in OXCE+ itself, but rather in the various mods that use it as a base engine?
« Last Edit: April 16, 2018, 07:20:27 pm by Solarius Scorch »

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Re: [1] What is OXCE+ and how does it fit into this world?
« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2018, 09:32:55 pm »
Thanks!  I was just hoping that there was a collected summary of OXCE+'s features.

The link I gave you contains complete list of all oxce+ features... it is a changelog since I started working on it.

Am I correct in surmising that many of the features I have been reading about are not in OXCE+ itself, but rather in the various mods that use it as a base engine?

Yes, oxce+ is an engine... features are "turned on" by mods.

Offline Machiavegli

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Re: [1] What is OXCE+ and how does it fit into this world?
« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2018, 11:01:31 pm »
I just noticed that there is an option in the "Extended" portion of OXCE+'s Advanced settings menu to "Remove wounded soldiers from training."  The explanation text from hovering the mouse over it states that wounded soldiers can't train so they will be automatically removed from the training facility if enabled.  If there is no training facility capability built into base OXCE+, why is that advanced option there?  Is it for a separate mod or mods?

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Re: [1] What is OXCE+ and how does it fit into this world?
« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2018, 11:06:58 pm »
What answer do you expect? :)

Offline Machiavegli

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Re: [1] What is OXCE+ and how does it fit into this world?
« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2018, 11:18:08 pm »
What answer do you expect? :)

Dunno. OXCE+ is quite a different world from OpenXCom, very wide-open and formless. I guess I'll grab BiggieBoy's new facilities mod and take it for a spin ...

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Re: [1] What is OXCE+ and how does it fit into this world?
« Reply #11 on: April 15, 2018, 11:48:56 pm »
Dunno.

It's there because some people liked to have it on and some people liked to have it off... so it cannot be hardcoded into a mod and must be a "user setting".

OXCE+ is quite a different world from OpenXCom, very wide-open and formless. I guess I'll grab BiggieBoy's new facilities mod and take it for a spin ...

Hmm, most of the people say they don't even notice any difference... even the famously incompetent Lewis & Ben had absolutely no issue and switched seamlessly.

If there is no training facility capability built into base OXCE+, why is that advanced option there?  Is it for a separate mod or mods?

I could make a "minimod" called "OpenXcom: Training Facility", which would add it to the "base game" similar to OpenXcom standard mods like e.g. "Starting Defensive Base"... but since somebody already made it and it is available here on the forum and was available on (now dead) mod portal... I decided not to.

PS: actually, if you ask my personal opinion, I would completely remove all standard mods from OpenXcom too... they are compatible only with vanilla game... and nowadays, in the age of mods... they do more harm than good (by being incompatible with any medium/bigger mod).