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Map Editor

 
forker

I'm sure this has been said before, but the map editor is not very user friendly. I spent an hour working on a great map, but I forgot one little thing that would ruin it and was unable to "undo" or in any way go back and fix the problem. Here's some examples of ways that the map editor can be extremely annoying:

You've drawn the whole thing and entered half the countries when you realize you forgot to create one of the continents. Sorry, tough luck, you can't go back and create another one!

You accidentally clicked into a region that you don't want to be part of that country. Again, tough luck!

I think this game would be 1,000 times more pleasurable if the map editor were more user friendly.

PS if you would like to give me an example of the file format you use to store the map data, I can try to make an editor myself.

 
Spir-An

Forker, well done for speaking up.

What you say about the map editor is absolutely right, and has been said many times, not least by me. Unfortunately we are unlikely to see any improvements to it because the site owner and programmer is not really interested in developing the game or spending any time on it, and he has even failed to reply in the past to other suggestions from users that work around his lack of interest, such as what you have requested re how the map data is stored.

For your interest, two users who are programmers have developed programs that enable downloading a map as a zip file, which when unzipped produces two files, one of which contains the non-topographic data and which can be edited as a text file. Thus it is possible to do things like add or take away continents, change what continents a country is in, change what countries touch what others, change spelling of names etc. (Then you re-upload the new version.) It's not possible to change the shape or map presence of countries, but at least this is something. Therefore I suggest in future if you make such a mistake while mapmaking you don't scrub the map, but instead complete it and then edit it later. I also recommend you join our Dominate Map Group at http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/dominatemapgroup/ , where you will find a copy of one of the up/downloader programs to use.

N.B. I know Emiel has installed his own map up/download system on this website, but that cannot be opened to produce an editable file... unless you use some special funky decompiler or something that no-one will tell me about.

The same programmer types (three people in this case) have also said they would produce a new map editor... and I was even sent some work in progress to try out, but sadly none of the three have materialised. So if you could make one you would be dearly beloved by many mapmakers on Dominate. I don't know whether those others got the information of file format from Emiel or not, I suspect they back-engineered what they needed to know by trial and error.

As a last word... certain other Risk type games on the internet have much better map editors. I've been told it's very hard to make one, which I can believe. But I find it hard to believe that if all those concerned with this question put their heads together they couldn't come up with one.

 
Spir-An

See this thread: http://www.dominategame.com/website.php?page=discussion&id=2394&t=1143619508

I also had a thread here where I wrote an unfinished FAQ on how to make good maps, but it's disappeared off the bottom of the index. However you will find it on the DMG site under Files/Help.

 
YouDieNow

The in-game format of maps is documented. You can find incomplete documentation of the DG protocol here: http://riskwar.com/dominategameprotocol.txt
The gaps in the map format are filled-in in some threads in the robot forum.

Note that this is the format of the map data used during games. It's not the format of the files you can upload/download through the website. All of the current map uploaders/downloaders login to the game and transfer the map data through the game.

Emiel had mentioned here before (either in the Suggestions or the Questions forum) what format the .map files are encoded with. Unfortunately I forgot what it was and that thread is buried somewhere off the main page. I seem to remember that it's some type of php related format.

 
MEMORICE

@forker

If there is just one map you want to edit, then I can edit it for you if you can tell me what you want to edit...

 
Spir-An

Well I just had a good look up and down the Questions and Suggestions forums and I can't find that thread either. Maybe it was on one of the other two (in which case it will definitely be lost), or maybe it was more than 9 months old.

BTW since when has the protocol been up on the net? I didn't know about that.

 
forker

Thanks for all the answers. Memorice, I closed the window without saving, thanks for the offer. Sounds like there might still be some value in creating an editor, even if it is only being passed around to people. Hopefully I'm not being too optimistic, but I don't think it will be that hard to do. The real question, of course, is finding the time to work on it :)

 
YouDieNow

Found it: http://www.dominategame.com/website.php?page=discussion&id=3714

It was actually a thread that you started, Spir_An :)

Emiel put the DG protocol online a long time ago, and I saved it on my computer.

 
Spir-An

Thanks Paul. I can hardly believe it was almost a year ago. Emiel says "A PHP programmer should have recognized the format. It contains all map data converted to a string with the php serialize() function.". So if anyone knows how to program PHP, I guess they can do something with that.

 
Spir-An

Can't get into http://www.php.net/serialize now. The site's been changed.

 
MEMORICE

@forker

It's not easy to make an map editor, especially to edit the borders...

 
kaap2

I must be pretty dumb, but where can I find this map editor?

 
Spir-An

There isn't one!

 
kaap2

So there also isn't an easy way to adjust the army bonusses for the continents? (I think North-America and Australia are overrated and Africa underrated)

 
Spir-An

Depends what call an 'easy' way. I described a method in my first post in this thread.

 
kaap2

Thanks, it worked and already played a game with the eddited bonuses. Just had some prblems editting the .dat file, but that was because I first had to unzip the mapfiles completely before I could edit it.

But in the end it worked so thank you very much (and yes it's pretty damn easy).

 
Spir-An

You're welcome. Glad my info has been of help to someone!



 
CARAMBA

....

 
Spir-An

Ah memories. We had such hopes back then.

Why have you bumped this thread Caramba?

"...the site owner and programmer is not really interested in developing the game or spending any time on it..."

Still true? Or not?



 
CARAMBA

u proberly right
i just see it was on it way out...ask mongol or aero to put in Intolerable conversations
if it not with eny help for enyone

i just thought it might***they bouth on-line at the moment by the way :)



 
CARAMBA

why u soo passive,,,he kept this site alive
losing money one it over 10 year...
i dont complain ...most plps that play this, and complain about evryf**kin thing bad.
and allways knows better then enyone else
dice bad ,card bad,,,etc.
hmm emiel do some allready and have plans ,,,
even its time consuming as hell
and he a busy man,,,,f*'k i still be pleased that is even as it is,,,and
i gonna reenew membership...i m greathful
and bored of all the f**ks that dont do eny else then complain....it's like they used to
get feed by mom by spoon...holyshit

:D

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