[TOOL] The Codexificator

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Joubarbe
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[TOOL] The Codexificator

Post by Joubarbe » Thu Dec 04, 2014 5:44 pm

Image


Download
(1.00 - 04/12/2014)



Disclaimer

Even though many of us would like to see a perfect adaptation of Warhammer 40k on computer, I think that it wouldn't be as fun as we imagine. There are many many rules, and when you don't explicit them, they can be very obscure, especially if the game does not explain everything (and it simply cannot, unless by having a complex overladen UI). For those who don't know 40k, the rulebook of the 7th edition is 200 pages and some important rules are just one line. That's another point : Warhammer 40k is not meant to be played behind a computer, but with friends, around a table, discussing the rules and sometimes (often) ignoring or modifying them.

With this tool, I tried to bring a feeling of Warhammer 40k into Armageddon. Armageddon is a great game, and modding it also requires to keep and respect its own identity. So there are 40k rules, and Armageddon rules. Both have to be considered.

WARNING : The Codexificator is a tool, not a mod. It creates new rules but doesn't do the work for you ! (unfortunately)

WARNING : Beware of the automatic patches of Steam ! It can override your changes. To prevent that, you can copy your Armageddon folder elsewhere and work on these files instead.

Features
  • Edit/Create new units through automatic data changes in three files : unittypes.whdat, weapons.whdat and attack.whdat.
  • Autonomous Graphics section. You can easily set the Offsets of a weapon without having to change the unit's statistics. And the contrary is also possible : change stats without graphics.
  • Enter informations from Codex, hit Codexify, and voila ! The Codexificator has its own unmodifiable rules (well, they can be modified, but just by me, so you'd have to be convincing :) ).
  • Includes several files that modify some other stuff. Movements, terrains and strings, to be precise.
  • Backups from 1.01 are included, but do your own. Modding Armageddon is destructive. You can always edit the unit back to what it was before, but do a backup anyway :)
The Rules

The fun part ! So... here we go.
First, you have to know that there are tooltips for everything ; so if you don't know something, just hover your mouse over the various elements. That should give you an idea.

Let's start with the easy section :

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The only thing you really need here is the ID of the unit you want to modify. One unit = One ID, that's a cardinal rule. Next, instead of typing every informations manually, click the "A" button, for Autocomplete. Then "Load" to load the six images of the unit into the Graphics section.

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For now, Factions are not dynamic. If you create your own faction, the Codexificator will not detect it. It can be easily changed if needed (to be honest, I did not think of that before now...).
Unit Type : first big changes here. It won't work if you do not use the movement.whdat including in the archive. In a nutshell, I changed all movement types to have one movement per unit type (infantry, monsters, jump-packed infantry, jetpacked infantry, cavalry, vehicles, artillery, walkers, beasts, titans, flying monsters and aircrafts). Besides, there are now three types of terrain in terms of movement penalties : clear terrain, difficult terrain, and impassable terrain. On a difficult terrain, you only have half of your movement points. And some units will even need one turn to go through them.
Squad Size : if you use the strings.whdat including in this archive, you'll see that Strength is now called Squad Size. So, it's easy, that's the number of units a squad can have. In Armageddon, this is called Strength to have a more conceptual approach of a squad, in which all units have all the same weapons ; which is not the case in War40k. So, in my opinion, two squads should be created when you feel the need of adding weapons that all units cannot master. For instance, I prefer to have a Scout Squad of 4 guys with Heavy Bolters (76 points), and another one with 4 Sniper Rifles (48 points), than a squad of 8 Scouts with both Sniper Rifles and Heavy Bolters, because in Armageddon rules, all units would have these weapons (another example with the Tactical Squad : 8 SM with Bolters, and 2 with Missiles Launchers). So yeah, the rules of 40k need to be bent (because such squads cannot exist in the tabletop) if you want to really have a Squad Size instead of a Strength. That's the first slippery part of the Codexificator rules :)
It's all about compromises.

Is a character : It's pretty easy, graphically speaking, to make a squad of 5 a squad of 1. So if you do that and check this box, your unit will receive the Leadership trait, will have more Hit Points (*1.5) and will be faster (+1 Movement).

Is a melee unit : Will receive the Assault trait (note that beasts and monsters will naturally receive it). No other bonuses provided, because as you will see, Melee units are a serious threat now, because of some indirect rules. For instance, there is no retaliation now. Only melee weapons and specialist weapons can retaliate...

Is a Psyker : ... and Psykers ! They can retaliate with all their weapons, and all of them receive the Terror traits. In Armageddon, psychic powers don't exist, so I tried to give them some value. Every other weapons than melee/specialist/psyker have the Bulky trait, which I renamed "No Retaliation".

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If you don't know War40k, this part will seem strange to you... It's Weapon Skill, Ballistic Skill, Strength, Toughness, Wounds, Initiative, Attack, Leadership, Save, and Armor, only used for motorized units. Let's make it brief :
WS and BS are limited to 10.
Respectively, WS gives melee accuracy : 32, 34, 36, 48, 50, 52, 64, 66, 68, 70
BS gives range accuracy : 16, 32, 48, 64, 80, 84, 88, 92, 96, 100
Strength is only for your reference (many Melee weapons use the Strength of the user).
Toughness gives the Defense of infantry. It's simply T * 10.
Wounds are Hit Points.
Initiative is... (a chocolate bar for the one who finds the answer !)
Attack is the number of shots the melee weapons of the unit will have.
Leadership gives the Fearless trait if above 8. Note that all vehicles have this trait (in War40k, there is no morale effect to vehicles).
Save adds a % to the defense of the unit ; respectively from 6 to 1 : 0, 16, 32, 48, 64, 80. There is an attack efficiency rule in Armageddon, so with that in mind I felt that the Save should indirectly gives more chance to avoid a shot. And from the Armageddon side, it would be imbalanced to add a fix value, so I add percentage.
Armor is the Hit Points of a vehicle (or any rolling thing with an engine, except Walkers). The best values of the three in War40k are kept. Like Toughness, the Defense of a vehicle is : Armor * 10 (can exceed 100).

To be consistent with Armageddon and the size of the maps (and the FOW, and the pace of the game), inches are converted in two different scales. One for movement, one for weapon's range.

For the movement, 1 hex = 3".
For the range, 1 hex = 6".


And here comes the second slippery rule of the Codexificator. In Armageddon, you cannot use direct fire at more than 4 hexes. So every weapons that can fire at least this far receive the Indirect Fire trait by the Codexificator. To try to balance this, there is an increased penalty of accuracy per hex depending on the Weapon Skill of the unit. Raw conversion table : 1WS:-8 ; 2WS:-7 ; 3WS:-6 ; 4WS:-5 ; 5WS:-4 ; 6WS(and more):-3. Fortunately, the range of 24" is very common ; that gives us 4 hexes, and no odd Indirect Fire. Also, min ranges are increased depending on the max ranges (for a max range of 6, you get a min range of 3).

Spotting is like this : vehicles have 3, infantry and walkers have 4 and noisy things that go in the air have 6 (I have Orks blood).

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Every unit should have a melee weapon, that's another cardinal rule. Firstly because of the no retaliation rule, and secondly because all ranged weapons have a minimal range (except Pistols, that are considered as melee weapons in 40k). Don't forget that only melee units have the Assault rule, so having a melee weapon as a ranged unit does not give the same power.

The stuff you write in this section is for 1 weapon, and for 1 weapon only. If you have 2 of the same weapon, you write "2" in the "Nb" section, but enter the statistics of only one (even the name, which is automatically changed to something like "Pistols x2").

Range is the max range of the weapon. Leave it empty for melee weapons or put anything, they always have 1 (and not 0). Min ranges are automatically calculated.
Strength is the S in the Codex. Sometimes it's "User", so write down the S of the unit instead. The calculation of the Weapon's Strength is : (S + 1) * 10.
AP is calculated the same way as Save. If you have a Bolter (that's 5 AP in 40k), you will have 16% AP in Armageddon.
Shots is the number of... shots. For melee weapons, it's automatically set to the Attack value of the unit.
Rapid Fire halves the range, but gives one more shot.
Heavy reduces the movement point by 1 point. In War40k, it forbids a unit to shoot and move in the same turn.
Gets Hot reduces the defense of the unit by 16%. In War40k, a unit with such a gun has a chance of getting wounded by using it.
Specialist adds 30% Melee accuracy. In War40k, you gain another roll to hit if you missed the target the first time. The +1 A bonus for having two melee weapons or two specialists weapons is not taken into account, because in Armageddon, you always use all your weapons, which is not the case of the Assault phase in War40k.
Terror and AA : two original traits from Armageddon. Indirect Fire and Bulky are automatically assigned, and Siege doesn't seem to have any effect in the game.

Graphics

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Every weapon animation in Armageddon starts from a specific point. Units do not fire from their eyes, so you need to adjust that if you want to assign a new weapon to your squad. There are six images per squad ; if you click in the image, it adds the proper offset. And that's it, that's pretty much what you have to do ; but do be careful of these two boxes below the big "Codexify" :

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The first one is used very often, because many units have one ranged weapon and one melee weapon, and you don't need to change the graphics for them if you don't want too much changes in their wargear.
The second one is self-explanatory ; probably useful for those who wants to add new units or weapons.

Installation

Extract to your root Armageddon folder... Again, the Codexificator must be in your root folder. There is a testing scenario with six customized units (I know, it's ridiculous but I don't have enough time to make a proper mini-mod ; maybe later !). If you have other custom scenarios, open your data\scenarios.whdat and add this line at the bottom : MyTest.whscn imperial_guard.png Codexificator Demo.

Extract the files that are contained in "modified rules - extract to data" and "testing scenario - extract to data" to..... \data !
Last edited by Joubarbe on Thu Dec 04, 2014 6:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

sukhoi
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Lance Corporal - SdKfz 222
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Re: [TOOL] The Codexificator

Post by sukhoi » Thu Dec 04, 2014 5:49 pm

This is the coolest post I've seen today on the web :shock:

Joubarbe
Corporal - Strongpoint
Corporal - Strongpoint
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Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2010 7:08 pm

Re: [TOOL] The Codexificator

Post by Joubarbe » Thu Dec 04, 2014 5:50 pm

The coolest of your life man ! The coolest of your life...

VoidDragon
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Re: [TOOL] The Codexificator

Post by VoidDragon » Thu Dec 04, 2014 5:53 pm

I really don't think we should strive to bring tabletop Wh40k on computer. It's terribly unbalanced and uneven, and makes no attempt to fix it.

Aekar
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Re: [TOOL] The Codexificator

Post by Aekar » Sun Dec 07, 2014 8:18 am

The tool sounds nice!
But I may have not understood yet what it does in its entirety.

Do you convert TT values to Armag values? (I suppose it's yes?)
What decisions did you take in this?
I've made some (untested) decisions myself when making my Dark Eldar mod, and I'll share some of them today.


That's another point : Warhammer 40k is not meant to be played behind a computer, but with friends, around a table, discussing the rules and sometimes (often) ignoring or modifying them.

I think you pretty much forget "what can be done".

A PVP game, with your army against theirs, doesn't "bring much to the table".
I will be interested in playing it but maybe only for some time.

A cooperative computer game, with you and your friends having an army that you upgrade, that you play together agains AI opponents, dynamic campaigns and scenarios, would be an immediate buy and play from me.
This is also something I would like do design as a developer. :)

Joubarbe
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Re: [TOOL] The Codexificator

Post by Joubarbe » Sun Dec 07, 2014 9:10 pm

"Warhammer 40k is not meant to be played behind a computer"..... so that's why I'm against the "let's bring the rules of Warh40k into Armageddon, blindly, and not think about the game itself" policy. I encountered that thinking in Dawn of War, and that doesn't bring any good mods. That's what I meant. War40k can't be done with Armageddon, so I tried to do my best to respect the game and inject the Codex into this great game of Slitherine.

Aekar
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Re: [TOOL] The Codexificator

Post by Aekar » Mon Dec 08, 2014 12:03 am

No problem Joubarbe.

I also think what we want is a gameplay strongly reminiscent and "building up" from W40k, instead of a W40K "weak version", that tries it without any hope of achieving more, better, or even the same thing.
From what I have seen so far while working on mods, the game allows very tough recruiting decisions and tactical situations.
So ... let's have more of them :D

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