Lately I've been considering starting up modding again, but I really do not have the time anymore. Still today I went through a lot of my old files and found everything I backed up. (I backed up EVERYTHING) Still it's fantastic looking through all these bizarre files I kept for pretty much no reason at all.
For those of you who know about me and Uber's modding. We started out doing server mods (mainly a guy who went by Gasoline, and then Uber) Still I knew a little about python programming and I hoped I could help out (wound up I blatantly didn't know much past the syntax for the code). Anyways, we built these server mods for a BF2 mod called Sandbox Mod which allowed you to build whatever you wanted in BF2 through a client interface. Uber and I started to have fun with some commands that modified object templates (basically what defined the stats of guns and vehicles) and would make little server based changes while having fun on Gas' server (DeathByBinary) We made snipers shoot missiles and made boats go faster than they should ever go in BF2 (the water physics would cause it to go flying into the air way too often) That lead to us finding out that if had the ability to modify client templates we could go so much further. The first thing created was a flying Abrams tank, which we also found we could make it appear on fire. This became our strive to mod and quickly became RoflBox mod (We used Sandbox's concept but basically created the most absurd features)
Results of RoflBox
Even though RBX is one of the most pointless and silly modifications I know. some of the things we created in it and proved possible far exceeded what several people assumed possible, or barely felt a need to try. That is what made me love the mod. coding a working submarine (although yes it was sketchy) was one of the first feats. Now that I look back at some of the last major features I realize Uber definitely outdid himself Letting players not only create but animate and give life to creations on a much larger scale than Sandbox could have hoped. I honestly feel if the Sandbox community hadn't treated us like crap (yes we were crazy but what we accomplished was brilliant) then the combined forces could have made what sandbox truly wanted to accomplish, which was full power to the players. We got permission to use their code even though Uber redid most of it in the end to be more efficient, but they still shunned us. Anyways, found a video where I made a guard shack where you walk up in and hit a button and a metal plate folds back to allow you to shoot at enemy forces. Then Uber creating races with little ATVs by setting waypoints for the vehicles to automatically drive to.
With all the discoveries we made we then felt we needed to make something actually serious and something that people could play either competitively or cooperatively. And that at first lead to Ninja Mod. Which was basically the idea of pushing towards a Feudal Japan setting and making everything melee, bow and arrow, or shurikens. Which was pretty fun, but we both didn't know how to model.
Modding in General
Uber excelled at 3d modelling within a month despite what he might say, and while his stuff was mediocre it still beat the majority of work in your typical mod at the time. Within a 2nd month of learning I was blown away by what he could do. Meanwhile my modelling attempts kept being put back by the fact that I criticize my work too much. I grew irritated and gave up. (Wouldn't be the first or last) To be honest a lot of my role up this point has never felt very useful other than being a spokes person, or giving ideas. I understand a lot of the process to doing everything in a mod, but each time I tried to make my own thing I would get annoyed at myself with it. I will say though working the role of "Ideasman" has suited me. I love to problem solve, and when something breaks, I find myself good at asking myself the right questions to find a work around. Besides working with the community always had it's ups and downs and I loved seeing all the people who actually enjoyed what we were doing. I remember playing Point of Existence one day and someone suddenly saying in chat "HEY! your the CrazyIvan that helped develop RBX!" which brought me a lot of pride.
Things in reality couldn't have been more stressful during all the time that I did modding for BF2 particularly RBX. In 2007 I started College but had no idea what major I wanted to do, and on top of that I worked at the Equipment Manager for the football team (Which I loved doing but the hours and roommate at the time just about drove me insane). I got to the point where I was sleeping more than I was awake by the end of the semester and that was when I decided I had to quit Football and school. I moved back with my parents and about at the same time me and Uber began on the idea of Operation Dead Dawn. I could never explain modding to my parents because I couldn't explain what I was learning from it.
Operation Dead Dawn
OPDD has always been an ambitious project and to be honest we should have brought in more people from the start. Ironically, Uber was just getting over his "rotten flesh phobia", so we decided to make a zombie mod. Our first release of OPDD was flawed but it had some pretty interesting takes on zombie modding, including a life system for zombies. shooting them took away a life while them killing a human added I think 2 lives. They re-spawned where they last died, which made things impossibly crazy. Still a British Video Game magazine loved the idea and posted a small article about us right next to an article about Killing Floor's rapid steam release success. Hilariously we had already removed that feature that we were noted for by the time the magazine came out, but it was still satisfying, and gave me an idea of what people found interesting. Which was the more complex systems but also kept us close to the zombie stereotypes. I still have this amazing vision on the completion of OPDD. Writing up the story puts me on full circle of learning a little of everything in game creation. While I may not be the most proficient at any one thing. I find that I love doing them all.
What Modding means to me
While that article helped show my family that what I was doing was being noticed by people that could actually lead to me having a future. It still only gave me knowledge, and enjoyment. Still the modding really has taught me a lot. Things like working with people who can barely speak English, and teaching myself to be patient with them and help answer their questions. I learned a lot about potential copyright issues from Trahn Lee (leader of EoD mod), and still want to give him thanks for his help. I learned about nearly all of the creative process to a small extent even if I consider myself uncreative. I learned about limitations both on engine and on the people working with me. I could go on listing things all night, but really modding hasn't meant that I hate the original game and would prefer to see it differently. It's more like I want to keep playing the game in my own way after enjoying it already for years. Like Legos you can follow the instructions and make something cool or you can take those same blocks and build and find something more to build with them. Which is what makes Legos so dang addicting. How can you get bored with something that is completely full of limitless possibilities? The only stopping point comes the question of "What do I want to do next?"
I want to thank everyone who has supported me and Uber's work over the years. It has meant a lot.
The Crazy Ivan
(I'm sure this is full of typos and grammatical errors as I didn't even read through it after typing it. That is rare and I apologize for any confusions due to this.)