The Meaning of Life, the Universe, and Everything.
I've been working on an out-of-Minecraft editor for HQM ("Hardcore Quest Mode") files. This mod is used in many mod packs (including a pretty big one that I've been helping my wife create... stay tuned!); it adds questing, reputation, and tiered reward bag systems to Minecraft. While the mod itself is top-notch, I've had one major pet peeve with it, and that's the fact that there's no support for doing even the simplest editing outside of Minecraft. The developers of HQM have suggested that the next version of the mod (v5) will use JSON files instead of this .hqm blob, which would be awesome, but until that happens, we're kinda stuck.
So, back to my project. I've built most of an editor for these binary HQM files outside of Minecraft. It supports loading and saving, as well as most of the quest manipulation stuff you'd expect. It's still lacking a few absolutely necessary features (reputation editing, quest line description editing, task editing, cross-set links, quest reward editing, reward bag editing), so it's not quite ready to be released yet, even as a really early "this is crap, but it works" version.
Note that it's a WPF application, so it's nominally Windows-only, but it's functional in Wine under Linux (after running "winetricks dotnet45 win7", that is). Screenshots will be using that because that's what I mainly use these days (which is really slowing down development on this, let me tell you...).
I've tagged this thread as "Help Wanted", because I would really like some input on how to deal with quest task editing. Here's what the "Edit Quest" dialog looks like so far (using a quest in AS2 for a demo):
I can deal with most of those "Click to modify..." links (heck, I can implement all of them... software development is how I feed the two of us, after all), but I'm a bit iffy about how to do that one next to "Tasks", and I'd like to know if someone else has some ideas before I dive into it.
For inspiration, here's what the "Reputation Rewards" link looks like (turns out the quest pasted above doesn't have any rep rewards, so this is the window that shows up when you click the link on the window for "First Steps"):
It's just a simple list, clicking "Add" adds a new reputation reward, clicking "Delete" deletes the selected one, "Cancel" cancels your changes, "OK" accepts your changes. For the very first iteration, I can get away with terrible but functional UI decisions, which is why I'm OK with that facepalm-inducing pile of crap (namely, the fact that you have to magically know the ID), but I'm not sure I have a good functional idea for how to do the tasks, considering that each type of task has different parameters.
So I'm a little stuck at the moment. I can push through this one without help, but it'll take some time. It'll probably be less time if I crowdsourced some ideas here. Fair warning for the uninitiated, software development is... weird. Things that seem easy on the surface can take months, things that seem possible can actually be proven to be impossible, and it's actually a really hard thing to do in general (or so I'm told). So if I don't go with someone's awesome idea, it's probably not because I don't think it's awesome, but rather because I think it's something closer to "too awesome to be done in under a month".
For more inspiration and to hopefully further prove I'm not just blowing smoke (not to mention hopefully build some hype around this), here's what the current version looks like after loading Agrarian Skies 2's HQM file (I want to do something about displaying icons, but it's not absolutely necessary to have that done before you guys get to play with it):
As a short description (though my goal is that most of this should be intuitive, especially as you're running the application and doing stuff with it), the dots are quests, and the lines connecting them are requirements. The quest on the yellow side is the prerequisite for the quest on the red side (in other words, the lines get "hotter" as you go to the "later" quests... "later is hotter"). Clicking on any quest's icon will open the edit dialog. You can also drag quests around. Those radio buttons at the bottom let you create and delete links with your mouse instead (it changes your cursor when you click them so it's harder to accidentally be in the wrong mode, though apparently I just found out that "Add Quest Link" doesn't change it properly under Wine on my OS, so that's a thing I need to deal with now). You can also resize the window (though this only makes the main workspace bigger, because a page on the HQM quest book is a fixed size).
As a recap, I'm looking for some help designing the dialog that pops up when you're in that "Editing Quest" dialog and you click on the "Click to modify..." link next to "Tasks:". If someone has some ideas, feel free to post them here. It doesn't matter too much how you make the ideas go from your head to your computer to my computer to my head, as long as the ideas get there (it's probably best to draw pictures, though). I'll give due credit to anyone who posts ideas that affect what I do in the application (even if the ideas themselves don't actually make it in and they just inspire me or someone else to think a different way), if you're into that sort of thing.
I hang out in IRC on EsperNet (nick: "airbreather"), in at least the channels "#hqm" and "#minecraftforums", so ping me in one of those places and I'll try to have a chat the next time I'm around if you think that's a better way to communicate ideas than asynchronously posting on this thread (though don't expect an immediate response all the time).
The Meaning of Life, the Universe, and Everything.
From the original post:
It's still lacking a few absolutely necessary features (reputation editing, quest line description editing, task editing, cross-set links, quest reward editing, reward bag editing), so it's not quite ready to be released yet, even as a really early "this is crap, but it works" version.
I don't want to send it out until it can at least do everything that the in-Minecraft editor can do.
I'm really glad to see something like this being developed. Is it usable right now?
Not really, since I haven't had the free time to figure out how to make it work for some critical things like task management. Also, less than 24 hours ago as of the time of this post, the bleeding-edge version of HQM for 1.9.4 completely changed the underlying structure that the files are saved in, so this tool would be useless for that until I adapt. I'm probably going to just leave it alone since I expect 1.7.10 to go the way of 1.6.4 very soon.
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the reason why i ask is for some reason 2 of my quests have gone of the screen and i can't grab,click or otherwise interact with them anymore. I don't know how to fix it. would you have a simple fix for me?