Difference between revisions of "User:TechAngel85/NoMansSky"

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{{Warning|text= {{fc|important|'''DO NOT USE THIS GUIDE!!!'''}}
 
{{Warning|text= {{fc|important|'''DO NOT USE THIS GUIDE!!!'''}}
  
This guide is currently outdated due to game updates. Since the release of v2.6, the game has had small, silent updates pushed out every few days. This guide will be updated when the game updates slow to their normal pace, else this guide would have to be updated every week, and sometimes twice a week.}}
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This guide is currently outdated due to game updates. Since the release of v2.6, the game has had small, silent updates pushed out every few days. This guide will be updated when the game updates slow to their normal pace, else it would have to be updated weekly, and sometimes twice a week.}}
  
 
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Revision as of 21:55, July 30, 2020


TechGuideImage.jpg
Tech Enhanced - No Man's Sky
A guide for modding No Man's Sky
by: TechAngel85


Warning-Logo.png Warning: DO NOT USE THIS GUIDE!!!

This guide is currently outdated due to game updates. Since the release of v2.6, the game has had small, silent updates pushed out every few days. This guide will be updated when the game updates slow to their normal pace, else it would have to be updated weekly, and sometimes twice a week.

Contents

Introduction

This is a guide for my personal take on an enhanced, modded build for No Man's Sky (NMS). While there are mods available that provide similar changes, they're all personal preference and few matched what I was looking for. Some mods are good in one area but felt "cheaty" in others. Other mods are either completely removing gameplay elements with their edits or are stylistic overhauls, which can make the game feel completely different. Besides not finding what I desired, several of the mods I wanted to use conflict in ways that require manual editing to resolve and merge changes.

Once I got into modding NMS, I found many mods with "closed permissions". This I found confusing because their changes were edits anyone could make on their own (i.e. there's nothing proprietary in the mod). I understand closed permissions on custom assets like models and textures, but the MBIN files are nothing more than glorified INI files and should be fair game, from my perspective. Trying to claim edits to them as "closed permissions" is like saying you can't use the game's Medium setting because "I used it first". One can't claim ownership over values that anyone can go in and make themselves with a couple of freely available tools. However, to keep the peace, I decided to simply write a fairly simple guide.

Thus, the goal of this guide is to combine desired changes from specific mods, while balancing the rest of the settings in a consistent manner to retain the vanilla feel. These changes enhance certain features of the game that are somewhat clumsy in their execution. Certain annoyances are also lessen without completely nullifying their gameplay elements. The guide is aimed toward users that are newer to No Man's Sky and have barely dabbled or are just starting to mod their game. Thus, a user that has already modded their game isn't likely to find any use in this guide.

I would release this as a mod, however, a couple of the included mods don't have open permissions, thus, users are required to manually make the changes from these mod themselves. Don't worry, everything that is required is included below. The other reason for not seeking out permissions is the fact the game is updating so often. It's not really feasible, imo, to do really in-depth changes when they could all be nullified by the next update.


Initial Setup

Users will need to create a new folder for installing tools to and working with the game files. This folder can be located anywhere outside of Window's UAC influence. For the purpose of this guide, the following directory will be used: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\

Users will also need to create folders to house their unpacked game files and Project files. At least one Project folder is required for this guide. The following folder structure is suggested:

C:\Modding\NMS Modding\TechEnhancedNMS\
C:\Modding\NMS Modding\Tools\
C:\Modding\NMS Modding\ModProject2\ (optional)
C:\Modding\NMS Modding\ModProject3\ (optional)
C:\Modding\NMS Modding\Vanilla Game Files\

Essential Tools

The tools below are used for the modding process in this guide. They should be installed to a central location. The following will be used for this guide: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\Tools\.

Users will also require a text editor. Notepad++ is highly recommended!


MBINCompiler

Description: This is a simple, standalone application used for handling MBIN files. It can decompile MBIN files into readable EXML files and recompile edited EXML files into MBINs. Users should always use the latest version available.
Installation:
  1. Create a new folder for the tool: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\Tools\MBIN Compiler\
  2. Download the .DLL and .EXE files from GitHub
  3. Move the downloaded files to the MBIN Compiler folder


NMS Modding Station

Description: This tool is used for unpacking the game files to a specified location, moving unpacked files to specific "project folders" for editing, and compressing edited files into PAK archives that the game can use.
Requirements: MBINCompiler (above), .NET v4.5.2 (Windows 10 users only)
Installation:
  1. If required, download and install .NET v4.5.2
  2. Download the file from Nexus Mods
  3. Extract the archive to it's own folder: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\Tools\NMS Modding Station\


PSArcTool

Description: This is another simple application used to archive or extract PAK files.
Installation:
  1. Download the file from Nexus Mods
  2. Extract the archive to it's own folder: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\Tools\PSArcTool\

MBINCompiler and PSArcTool

The use of these tools are very simple. Users only need to drag and drop the supported files onto their EXE files for the applications to execute their tasks. Use these tools for extracting and compressing MBIN and PAK files, when necessary.

NMS Modding Station

This tool needs to be set up for use.

  1. Navigate to its EXE and run the the program
  2. On the Menu Bar, navigate to Setup >> Settings
  3. Fill in all the paths correctly for the folder used. The following are provided as examples:
    • Unpacked Game Files Path: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\Vanilla Game Files
    • MBINCompiler Path: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\Tools\MBIN Compiler\MBINCompiler.exe
    • Your Projects Path: C:\Modding\NMS Modding
    • PCBANKS Path: ..\Steam\steamapps\common\No Man's Sky\GAMEDATA\PCBANKS
    • EXML Editor Path: C:\Program Files\Notepad++\notepad++.exe
  4. Ensure the checkbox for Make Unpacked Game Files Tab Read Only is checked.
  5. Ensure the pak EXML Files is unchecked. Leaving it unchecked will skip EXML files when compressing PAK files, else they will be included (they're not needed).
  6. Click [OK] to save the settings.
Step 2

Step 2
Step 3-6

Step 3-6

Unpacking Game Files and Project Files (optional)

This section is optional since all the files required for this guide are included. However, it's important that users know these steps so they could update their own setups, if this guide ever becomes outdated. For this, NMS Modding Station is used and it will require ~24GBs of disk space.

The vanilla game files need to be unpacked from their normal state for development use. This process will take several minutes to complete, even on SSDs. Let it set, even if it looks like it's not doing anything...users should have ~17 folders, ~29 MBIN files, and a few other files when complete. To do this:

  1. Open NMS Modding Station
  2. Navigate to Setup and click on [Unpack Game Files].
  3. If prompted, navigate the desired folder to house the files (e.g. C:\Modding\NMS Modding\Vanilla Game Files )
Step 2

Step 2
Step 3

Step 3
Unpacked Game Files

Unpacked Game Files

Users are encouraged to not overwrite or alter the vanilla game files to keep them as a vanilla reference. Therefore, "Projects" are used to copy the vanilla assets for development purposes. This can be done manually by copying and pasting the files from their unpacked location to a Project folder, or NMS Modding Station can be used and it'll include the proper folder structure when doing so:

  1. Open NMS Modding Station
  2. Right-click on the desired file
  3. Select [Copy to Project Path].
  4. On the prompt, select the project folder to copy the file to (e.g. C:\Modding\NMS Modding\ModProject2 )
    This will "set" the project for the current session. To move additional files to a different project folder, users will have to close and reopen the program.

Users are now ready to start working with the game files.


Standalone Mods

The mods listed below, currently, have no conflicts with any other part of this guide. They can be installed, individually, as separate mods, skipped, or replaced by other alternatives. Installing individual mods for NMS is very simple. To do so:

  1. Download the archive from Nexus Mods
  2. Extract only the PAK file from the archive directly to the ..\No Man's Sky\GAMEDATA\PCBANKS\MODS\ folder.

Download and install the following mods:



Merging Mods

Now the real work begins! This section requires manual editing of game files in order to merge the guide's changes with changes from various other mods. This section is necessary due to mods not having open permissions. Since I don't care to seek these permissions, at this time, users are required to make these changes manually.

  1. Download the guide's resource files: Nexus Mods
  2. Extract the resource files from the archive to a Project folder: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\TechsEnhancedNMS\

Base Building Table

The game's Base Building Table is located at: \METADATA\REALITY\TABLES\
The provided resource file is located at: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\TechsEnhancedNMS\METADATA\REALITY\TABLES\BASEBUILDINGTABLE.EXML

Features

The changes to this file provide the following features:

  • Some item's terrain cuts have been improved
  • Additional items will cut the terrain properly when placed
  • Item limits and restrictions have been removed for most items
  • Most items can now be rotated, scaled, change color, and change material
  • Removing most things will no longer remove attached items (prevents rework)

Credits

The following mods were either used as reference or merged into the guide's resource files:

  • Gumsk's Base Building (Open Permissions)
    All other edits, besides the ones below, were merged from this mod. This is a really great resource and a big shout out to Gumsk! Since it includes so many edits, this mod is a great resource to use as a foundation to build upon, as long as it's up-to-date with the latest version of the game.

Manual Edits

The following edits have to be made manually to the Base Building Table.

  1. Open the BASEBUILDINGTABLE.EXML file from the provided resource
  2. Using the information below, navigate to the line numbers and make the provided changes...
  3. Save and close the file when complete.

Dig Out

13926      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="3" />
      <Property name="TerrainEditTopYOffset" value="3" />
      <Property name="TerrainEditBoundsScalar" value="2" />
...
14005      <Property name="BaseTerrainEditShape" value="Cylinder" />
      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="0.7" />
      <Property name="TerrainEditTopYOffset" value="0" />
      <Property name="TerrainEditBoundsScalar" value="1.2" />
...
18857      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="0.3" />
...
18937      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="0.3" />
...
19017      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="0.3" />
...
19097      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="0.3" />
...
19177      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="0.3" />
...
19257      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="0.3" />
...
19337      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="0.3" />
...
19417      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="0.3" />
...
19497      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="0.3" />
...
19577      <Property name="TerrainEditBaseYOffset" value="0.3" />
...
21996      <Property name="EditsTerrain" value="True" />
      <Property name="BaseTerrainEditShape" value="Cylinder" />
...
22544      <Property name="EditsTerrain" value="True" />
...
22624      <Property name="EditsTerrain" value="True" />
...
22627      <Property name="TerrainEditTopYOffset" value="2" />

Building Globals

This file handles most general settings for buildings and other structures. There, currently, isn't any manual work for users here. Please read over the features provided and be sure to visit and endorse the credited mods.

Features

The changes to this file provide the following features:

  • Increased base radiuses
  • Fade Distance of building LOD increased 50%
  • Unknown buildings and icon range increased 50%
  • Cable and wire length made to match the base radius
  • Increased the minimum and maximum buildings the ship will scan for

Credits

The following mods were either used as reference or merged into the guide's resource files:

Environmental Globals

This file handles a mix of settings for environmental features. There, currently, isn't any manual work for users here. Please read over the features provided and be sure to visit and endorse the credited mods.

Features

The changes to this file provide the following features:

  • Slowed the clouds to half the vanilla speed
  • Creature, Flora, and Terrain fade-in times reduced to reduce pop-in
  • Distances LOD switches to high res textures increased by 2x (higher res textures at twice the distance)

Credits

The following mods were either used as reference or merged into the guide's resource files:

Gameplay Globals

This file handles a mix of settings for gameplay elements. There, currently, isn't any manual work for users here. The entirety of the changes are custom edits made for this guide. Please read over the features provided and be sure to visit and endorse the credited mods.

Features

The changes to this file provide the following features:

Scanners

  • Survey Scanner speed increased by 3x
  • Survey Scanner range increased from 400u to 800u
  • Terrain Resource compass and scanner range increased by 50%
  • Binocular and other scan speeds increased by 50%
  • Mining and Terrain beam distances increased by 50%
  • Visual Only scan pulse range increased by 25%
  • Visual Only scan pulse speed increased by 25%
  • Visual Only scan change time decreased by 75%
  • Zoom walk speeds are slightly faster
  • Zoom minimum scan distance for all levels is 0.
  • Zoom level 1 (L1) increased by 50% of vanilla, L2 by 125% of L1, L3 by 200% of L2, L4 by 750% of L3
  • Beacon, Debug Planet, Debug Space, Distress Signal, Observatory, Radio Tower, Ship, Tool, and Waypoint scanners pulse range increased by 50%
  • Beacon, Debug Planet, Debug Space, Distress Signal, Observatory, Radio Tower, Ship, Tool, and Waypoint scanners charge times and pulse times decreased by 50%

Miscellaneous

  • Refiners are 20x faster vs vanilla.
  • Ship interaction range increased from 50u to 300u.
  • Freighter battles (when exiting warp) happen twice as less vs vanilla
  • Reduced flashlight/torch strength to reduce blowout when close to objects

Credits

The following mods were used as reference for the guide's custom edits:

Graphics Globals

This file handles a mix of settings the control graphical settings. There, currently, isn't any manual work for users here. The entirety of the changes are custom edits made for this guide. Please read over the features provided and be sure to visit and endorse the credited mods.

Features

The changes to this file provide the following features:

  • Reduces pop-in of terrain
  • Increases the Shadow draw distances by 50%

Credits

The following mods were used as reference for the guide's custom edits:

Metadata

Some Metadata files are already included in the resource files, however, the following mods require manual merging due to their permissions. To do this for each mod:

  1. Download the mod from Nexus Mods
  2. Extract the PAK file from the downloaded archive
  3. Now extract the mod's PAK, itself, using PSArcTool.
  4. ...to continue, follow the instructions listed under each mod beneath Manual Edits, below...

Credits

The following mods were merged into the guide's resource files:

Manual Edits

The following edits have to be made manually for each mod below:

Exosolar's Abyss

  1. Once the mod's PAK file is extracted, copy the METADATA folder
  2. Paste the copied folder into the guide's Project folder: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\TechEnhancedNMS\
  3. Do NOT overwrite any files, if prompted. Skip them.

Player Globals

This file handles a mix of settings that control player-related features. There, currently, isn't any manual work for users here. The entirety of the changes are custom edits made for this guide. Please read over the features provided and be sure to visit and endorse the credited mods.

Features

The changes to this file provide the following features:

Player

  • Increased player swim speed by 50%
  • Increased player walk and run speed by 50%

Jetpack

  • Speeds increased by 50%
  • Drain rate slowed by 37.5%
  • Underwater drain rate decreased by 25%
  • Fill rates increased by 100%
  • Underwater fill rates increased by 50%
  • Melee boosts increased by 25%
  • Ignition force increased by 50%
  • Ignition times decreased by 50%
  • Increased force and brake by 33%
  • Tank time increased by 4x and then in 50% increments

Credits

The following mods were used as reference for the guide's custom edits:

Spaceship and Vehicle Globals

These files handle a mix of settings that control ship and other vehicle-related features. There, currently, isn't any manual work for users here. The entirety of the changes are custom edits made for this guide. Please read over the features provided and be sure to visit and endorse the credited mods.

Features

The changes to this file provide the following features:

  • Pulse speed increased by 50%
  • Doubled default land speeds
  • Tripled default space speeds
  • Doubled both land and space trusts
  • Space boost speed increased by 50%
  • Improved the overall landing of ships
  • Lowered initial takeoff hover height to 60u from 90u
  • Ships can now hover on land and come to a full-stop in space

Credits

The following mods were either used as reference or merged into the guide's resource files:

Water Globals

These files handle a mix of settings that effect water. Please read over the features provided and be sure to visit and endorse the credited mods.
The provided resource files are located at: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\TechsEnhancedNMS\

Features

The changes to this file provide the following features:

  • Improved water colors
  • Improved water ripples
  • Improved foam color at night
  • Fixes water rendering too low

Credits

The following mods were used as reference for the guide's custom edits:

Manual Edits

The following edits have to be made manually for each mod below:

Exosolar's Abyss

  1. Open the GCWATERGLOBALS.GLOBAL.EXML file from the provided resource
  2. Using the information below, navigate to the line numbers and make the provided changes...
  3. Save and close the file when complete.
7  <Property name="WaveFrequency" value="0.08" />
...
25    <Property name="WaterStrength" value="0.0065" />
    <Property name="WaterColourStrength" value="0.0095" />
...
28    <Property name="WaterMultiplyMax" value="0.85" />
...
126      <Property name="R" value="0.02" />
      <Property name="G" value="0.02" />
      <Property name="B" value="0.02" />
...
132      <Property name="R" value="0.0267" />
      <Property name="G" value="0.0267" />
      <Property name="B" value="0.0267" />
...
138      <Property name="R" value="0" />
      <Property name="G" value="0" />
      <Property name="B" value="0" />
...
144      <Property name="R" value="0" />
      <Property name="G" value="0" />
      <Property name="B" value="0" />




Compiling and Packing

To wrap up, the resource files need to be be recompiled and compressed into a PAK file that the game can use. This process can be completed manually or by using NMS Modding Station. Directions for both options are below for the sake of knowledge. Users should only follow one of the two options to complete the Guide.

Option 1 - Manual Wrap-up

To complete the process manually, both MBINCompiler and PSArcTool are used.

Compile EXML Files

  1. Open the guide's Project folder in an Explorer window: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\TechEnhancedNMS\
  2. Navigate to the Base Building Table: ..\TechEnhancedNMS\METADATA\REALITY\TABLES\BASEBUILDINGTABLE.EXML
  3. Drag and drop the file onto MBINCompiler.exe
    This recompresses the EXML file into a MBIN file that can be used by the game.
  4. Navigate back the the Project's root folder: C:\Modding\NMS Modding\TechEnhancedNMS\
  5. Select all the EXML files within the Project's root folder.
  6. Drag and drop the files onto MBINCompiler.exe
    This recompresses all the EXML files into MBIN files at once.
Step 1

Step 1
Step 2-3

Step 2-3

Pack Project Files

  1. Once the above has been completed, select all the files and folders in the Project's root folder.
  2. Drag and drop all selected items onto PSArcTool.exe
    This will compress the files into a PAK file.
  3. Rename the file to: TechEnhancedNMS.PAK
  4. Copy and paste the archive into the game's MODS folder: ..\No Man's Sky\GAMEDATA\PCBANKS\MODS\

Option 2 - Wrap-up using NMS Modding Station

The process using NMS Modding Station is similar to that of the manual process.

  1. Open NMS Modding Station
  2. Click on the Your Project tab.
  3. Double-click on the TechEnhancedNMS folder to open it
  4. Navigate through the folders to the Base Building Table: METADATA\REALITY\TABLES\BASEBUILDINGTABLE.EXML
  5. Right-click on the BASEBUILDINGTABLE.EXML and select [Recompile]
  6. Navigate back the the Project's root folder: TechEnhancedNMS\
  7. Right-click on each of the EXML files in the root folder and select [Recompile]
    Unfortunately, this has to be completed one at a time using NMS Modding Station.
  8. Once complete, select all files in the root folder.
  9. Right-click on one of the files and select [Pack Mod]
  10. Give the file a name at the prompt: TechEnhancedNMS
    This will compress the files into a PAK file.
  11. Once complete, select only the newly created PAK file.
  12. Right-click on the selected file and select [Copy To Mods Folder]
    This will install the PAK file to the game's MODS folder for use.
Step 1-3

Step 1-3
Step 4-5

Step 4-5
Step 8-9

Step 8-9
Step 10

Step 10
Step 11-12

Step 11-12



Go...rule the galaxy!

That is a wrap on this short guide. I hope you enjoy your slightly enhanced gameplay!

Future Plans

  • Include more texture mods
  • Improve Biome Generation