What is the Freelancer initial universe?
When you start a new game in freelancer, it loads DATA\initialworld.ini and sets up things like locked stargates (stopping you from leaving NY before completing mission 2 for example), and affects factions/faction standings.
How do I remove locked gates?
You can remove locked gates by editing the file as an administrator. Locked gate entries are preceded by [locked_gates] .
You can remove the entries for the gates you want unlocked.
How do I change NPC standings?
You can neutralize faction standings by going to the [group] entries. You see a list of factions (abbreviated, you can figure them out. For example li_n_grp is liberty navy group) and standings to other factions. The standings are floating point numbers between -1 and 1. 0 is neutral, - numbers become more hostile, and positive numbers become friendlier.
You can change NPC standings to each other, this is useful in universe sculpting. You can also add new game dynamics, such as creating wars, using these.
Adding this to mods
Freelancer mod manager is hiearchal. Simply add the modified file to DATA in your mod and it will overide the one in the freelancer folder.
-> Remember to match standings between factions, unless you want ultra pacifists.