1. #1

    How to edit .mod files

    I've managed to find them in the appdata/roaming/Fantasy Ground II/modules folder, but when I try to open them with notepad++, as I would think they would be opened, I cannot. What program do I have to use to edit the modules? I'm making my own system based off of 4E with new stats, skills, weapons, monsters, etc.... and it really would be nice to have a resource for the players as far as classes and weapons go, as well as factions, which are replacing class in this, and possibly a couple lore books, just put in module for good measure.

  2. #2
    VenomousFiligree's Avatar
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    rename the .mod files to .zip, then extract and you'll see the xml files within

    Previously: MurghBpurn

  3. #3
    Zeus's Avatar
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    .mod files are simply renamed .zip archives. Open them and uncompress the contents using something like WinZIP, WinRAR or StuffIt.

    You can build a 4E module in three ways:

    • From within FGII and a 4E campaign - create content as per normal and then use the /export command
    • Using Tenian's 4E Parser tool - Link - Great for bulk loading of data if you have access to a PDF or are a DDI subscriber
    • Manually using a text/xml editor


    Most of the 4E modules you will read about here on the forums have been built using the 4E Parser. This for several reasons:

    • the tool works by reading plain text files which contain marked up content or scraping it directly from the online tools to produce a ready to use module - meaning its relatively straightforward to rebuild content and thus errata.
    • the tool has been tuned/optimised to detect specific formatting used in 4E published content and to allow for easy import of bulk data - meaning its often a simple case of just copying and pasting content with no need for additional markup
    • the 4E ruleset does not expose campaign based windowclasses for library content - making it impossible (with the current ruleset version) to build library content easily from within FGII's interface


    If your system will use the 4E ruleset, take a look at the Parser. If on the other hand you plan to adapt a new ruleset from 4E then you will be better of finalising the ruleset and then creating the content either from within FGII whilst in a campaign using your new ruleset or by hand manually. This is because modules are generally ruleset specific (exception being basic module types e.g token packs).
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  4. #4
    Hey Doctor,

    Do you know if the tags used in a given .mod file (let's say the Player's Handbook) is defined outside of the db.xml file?

    I wanted to know if it was possible to create a new .mod, using the 4E ruleset as a base, but defining things differently.
    Example:
    Code:
    <a009blackironarmor>
    	<link type="windowreference">
    		<class>referencemagicitem</class>
    		<recordname>[email protected] Player's Handbook</recordname>
    	</link>
    	<name type="string">Black Iron Armor +2</name>
    	<cat type="string">Scale, Plate</cat>
    	<level type="number">9</level>
    	<cost type="string">4,200 gp</cost>
    </a009blackironarmor>
    So this is an entry on a table with 4 columns : item name, category, level, and cost

    The weird part is that they are displayed in order of : level, name, cost, and category.

    I couldn't find anywhere where this is handled inside the XML file.

    Is it possible to change these categories?
    Do they get formatted somewhere outside of the MOD file; adding yet another level of complexity when creation custom rulesets?

  5. #5
    Zeus's Avatar
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    Stitched - The XML data structure within a module usually follows a standard structure as defined by the ruleset its keyed to. The tags used in a module are usually defined within the ruleset windowclass definitions.

    Most rulesets support the standard Story, Encounters, Personalities, Items and Notes classes (Icons on the right of the desktop), these data nodes are therefore usually available in modules too, directly under the module's root tag. This way when a module is opened any data within these tags is 'merged' with the data in the campaign db.xml (this is presented in the FGII interface under the Category controls at the bottom of the windows).

    In addition most rulesets also support a Library windowclass. The library tag is also directly under the module's root tag and contains 'lists' of data that can also be referenced from within the module (but often outside of the Library tag structure, in 4E the tag is called 'referencedata').

    In this case, the example module XML you provided, conforms to the structure of the windowclass, 'referencemagicitem' as defined in the 4E ruleset. It is this windowclass that sets the output order under FGII's UI. The XML module data is not written out in any particular order that I am aware of (although I suspect the order of control initialisation during the windows initialisation may have a baring).

    The names of the lists tags just under the 'referencedata' e.g. Skills, Feats etc. etc. are again defined in the 4E ruleset. The names of the data nodes under each can generally be anything however for cross-linking to work you will have to ensure all references within the module to the data object are consistently named.

    So in summary, to change the data tags you we will need to revise the ruleset reference windowclasses and rename the window fields. Its probably better to copy an existing reference windowclass from the 4E ruleset into a extension. This way you can customise the new windowclass without overwriting or changing the core ruleset reference objects.
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    * All fluid by nature and therefore subject to change.

  6. #6
    It was more of a question about how the list's columns got ordered.

    With your answer in mind, I need to create an extension that overwrites the windowclass files, in order to change the tags used throughout the ruleset, correct?

    Which windowclass files need to be edited? Since it's the 4E ruleset we are talking about, they are embedded in the program as .pak files.

  7. #7
    Zeus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stitched
    It was more of a question about how the list's columns got ordered.
    Oh I thought I answered that. Sorry. The order of the fields you see within FGII's user interface is defined within the windowclass of the window. The windowclass definitions for a ruleset can be found in the .xml files in the root of the ruleset folder/pak.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stitched
    With your answer in mind, I need to create an extension that overwrites the windowclass files, in order to change the tags used throughout the ruleset, correct?
    Yes thats correct. Note: once you change these windowclasses, don't expect modules produced by the 4E Parser to work with your extensions in place. Also if you intend to overwrite as opposed to adding, you may need to update your extension each time a new version of the 4E ruleset is launched and when new functionality which affects your windowclasses is introduced.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stitched
    Which windowclass files need to be edited? Since it's the 4E ruleset we are talking about, they are embedded in the program as .pak files.
    This depends on the exact windows you want to change. If your looking for the .xml file which holds the definition of the referencemagicitem windowclass, take a look at reference_magicitems.xml in the root of the 4E ruleset. Most of the Library reference windowclasses are in the .xml files beginning with reference_. I sometimes do a search across all files from within Notepad++ and just point the search to look in the 4E folder to quickly locate the files I need to use/change but after a while you get used to moon_wizards and Tenian's naming schemes.

    To get to the 4E ruleset, just open the 4E.pak file in FGII's Program Directory with WinZIP and extract the contents to a folder somewhere on your machine (not a folder within the rulesets subfolder of the FGII app data directory).
    FG Project Development
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    Current Project:
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    * All fluid by nature and therefore subject to change.

  8. #8
    All my modules show up as windows movie clips that can't be opened, I open with word doesn't work, notepad just a bunch of weird characters.
    I zip it and it still comes out as wmv files i can't open.

  9. #9
    Zeus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trheel
    All my modules show up as windows movie clips that can't be opened, I open with word doesn't work, notepad just a bunch of weird characters.
    I zip it and it still comes out as wmv files i can't open.
    Right-Click the .mod file and select Open With, then select the Choose default Program option. In the dialog that opens, if WinZIP is listed in the Recommended programs select it and click OK, if its not then click on Browse and select C:\Program Files (x86)\WinZIP\winzip.exe.

    After clicking OK, WinZIP should open and you should see a list of the files inside the .mod file. From here you can click the Extract to button to extract the contents of the .mod file to a folder of your choosing.
    FG Project Development
    Next Project(s)*: Starfinder v1.2 Starship Combat

    Current Project:
    Starfinder v1.1 - Character Starships
    Completed Projects: Starfinder Ruleset v1.0, Starfinder Core Rulebook, Alien Archive, Paizo Pathfinder Official Theme, D&D 5E data updates
    * All fluid by nature and therefore subject to change.

  10. #10
    Thanks, that helped alot I really appreciate that.

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