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Age of Kings Heaven » Forums » The University » Annex Units(How to make a group of units together)
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Topic Subject:Annex Units(How to make a group of units together)
Draconian Devil
Squire
(id: DraconainDevil)
posted 11-16-11 08:24 AM CT (US)         

As the title suggests, this is a tutorial of how to successfully make a group of buildings seem to look together.When you are working in the editor, place a Town center of any civ. Now press Ctrl+A. This will show the selection of the buildings. Here, it is noticed that there are some extra lines, in between the TownCenter.This shows that the Town Center is not just one building, but a combination of three buildings!!

Well now how about learning to make something like this?
You might think it as a hard task, but a few steps from this tutorial will help you to make, a group of buildings like the Town center.(Note: This is only for buildings and not for units, also refer Jatayu's[Sword of Storm's] tutorial at blacksmith, for making units seem to look to gether)

Now you will require some tools
Here is the link of the tool you will be needing
Advanced Genie Editor.

Before we begin, i would like you to make a note of this.
1)Use the update button regularly before switching between an edited unit to
a non-edited unit.
2)After the editing of the unit is completely done, click the copy to all-civs button, so that
all the civs have the same data saved for use.
3)Whenever required check the include graphics checkbox and
then use paste button or copy to all-civs button.


Tool used:Age1.8(preffered)



STEP1


Open up the Age1.8 with the required settings(Settings like AOK folder, clicking save, selecting the conquerors version.).
After opening, go to the main dat file and the unit section,and select the unit 464-house,through the search.
After selecting you can just view around the stats of the house and make sure you have selected the correct unit.


STEP2

Now create four new units using the Add button on the bottom left. Then copy unit 464(House) and paste them on all of the four newly created units. When pasting, use the update button whenever you paste the unit and also use check the include graphics checkbox so that the graphics are also copied.



STEP3

Now go to the unit 464 and scroll down till you see, annex unit 1 and things similar to it.Now in the slots of annex unit
1,annex unit 2 and annex unit 3 put the id of the three new units(that will be 866, 867 and 868,but it should be the id of the first three
units that were added by you so the numbers, will not necessarily be same).
And in the misplacement slots put the following values so you will have something like this.
Annex Unit 1 : 866
Annex Unit 1 Misplacement: 1 , 1

Annex Unit 2 : 867
Annex Unit 2 Misplacement: -1 , -1

Annex Unit 3 : 868
Annex Unit 3 Misplacement: 1 , -1
Misplacement actually states for the placement of the new units according
to the main units. I am unsure about the placement of the scale which relates to the placement of the annex units. But then, that can be managed by random method.

Next when you go a bit down you will see a head unit slot.
put the value of the fourth new unit so the value will be like this.
Head Unit: 869
And dont forget to use the update button!




STEP4

Now this step refers to the units 866,867 and 868 or the first three new units created by you.
In these units scroll to the bottom till you see head
unit slot.Similiar to that of above.

Put the Head unit value same as above, ie that of the fourth new unit created by you.So the value
will be like this

Head Unit: 869



STEP5

Go to the fourth unit, and scroll down till you see a slot called
stack unit.Put the value as 464-house over here.So the value will be
like this.

Stack Unit: 464



And use the update button.

STEP6

Now to the finishing part, go to the unit 464
change the values of Size radius, Editor radius and Selection radius to 2 , 2

Size radius: 2 , 2
Editor radius: 2 , 2
Selection radius: 2 , 2

The finished product will look something like this!!



Questions you will possibily ask.


1.Why use Age 1.8?
A.Age2 is under construction right now,and some of its slots are unable to be used yet.
Age 1.8 is a good tool, and is a bit slow but is a user friendly

2.Why do i have to create four new units, and why not three instead?
A.Well the way in which the units are grouped together is kind of a structure.The Main house unit is the parent unit.
The first three new units are the minor units which come at the last.And as for the fourth new unit, it acts as a link to all of them, so it keeps them connected well enough.
If you want you can just use one units repeatedly(but that unit should be a new one and not the old one, other wise it would lead to game crash)

3.Why not use the 4th Annex unit slot?
A.The 4th annex unit slot is kind of buggy and mostly should be avoided.It also happens to overload the unit.

4.Why cant we use a building-unit combination?
A.Maybe we can use them, but it leads to a pressure on the unit, so the game is likely to crash, if the unit is placed.

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[This message has been edited by Draconian Devil (edited 12-27-2011 @ 12:36 PM).]

AuthorReplies:
Leif Ericson
Seraph Emeritus
posted 11-16-11 04:25 PM CT (US)     1 / 19       
I've skimmed through the article, and it seems pretty good. One thing I would suggest is to expand the introduction. Explain in greater detail what you're about to explain. Some screenshots would be excellent for that. Also, you might give a link to a modpack you've created or the modpack that Jatayu (SWORD_OF_STORM) made that does a similar thing with units. It might be called the 4-in-1 mod but I can't remember. Look it up in the top-rated section in the Blacksmith.

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Draconian Devil
Squire
(id: DraconainDevil)
posted 11-17-11 02:57 AM CT (US)     2 / 19       
Yes i am still going through it and updating it in a bit more detail though.And also i have give links of screenshots in every step.Will update it today, with some extra info and more
theory part to explain it.

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Draconian Devil
Squire
(id: DraconainDevil)
posted 11-17-11 10:59 AM CT (US)     3 / 19       
Ok updated the article well enough.Added some questions which will help the modders.Detailed the steps a bit.

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Leif Ericson
Seraph Emeritus
posted 11-20-11 07:27 PM CT (US)     4 / 19       
After some long research and trial and error, i have successfully found a way to make a group of units or so.
(Note:This can also be done by using units, but only building+building or unit+unit combinations are working successfully.)
You might remember that the town center consists of three units combined together.(total of three, but actually four).
That is there are three units combined toghether in one unit.The Upper part,The sides of the TC and the lower part.So now the question is how can you make one?
Well now you can make one, with my instructions!(These are quiet simple)
If someone without any modding knowledge came along and read this section, I doubt they would know what you're talking about.

I would rephrase the first sentence to something like this:

After quite a bit of research and trial and error, I have successfully found a way to make a group of buildings, a cluster of four buildings that look like separate units, but once you click on them they are in fact just one unit. They also function as one unit. If you made a group of watch towers, they would look like four watch towers, but you can select them all at once. They will only fire one arrow, but you can use data modding to make them fire more arrows like a castle does.

The example above explains things more thoroughly, and someone without modding experience might be able to understand what I was talking about.

So, I would expand the introduction and explain things more thoroughly. Also, a screenshot with the four houses selected as one unit would really help someone understand what this is about.

The rest of the article is pretty good, except for some grammatical things and some awkward word choices. I can fix those if you like. I'll point out these things though:
Tools required:Age1.8(preffered)
A link would be good to have at this time. You give directions on how to find AGE at the bottom of the thread, but someone might stop here and wonder where AGE is and not read the rest of the guide.
Create 4 new units, using the add new unit button and paste the copied unit on all the four units using the paste button.
Don't forget to tell them to actually copy the unit before they paste it. Don't assume someone already knows how to use AGE.
Well that was an easy task,but remember to use the update button at the bottom,if you dont update, nothing is going to work properly.
Also when using the paste button, select the include graphics box which appears at the start of the units stats.
They need to click update for each unit before they select the next unit, right? In my opinion, you should tell them about these things before they add, copy, and paste, so that they mistakenly forget to click Update or select Include Graphics.

There's a few others I could mention, but it would make this post much longer. In general, I'd suggest explaining things more thoroughly. It might feel like you're babying them, but I can tell you if it goes over the top.

~`o~|\  Join the fresh and exciting AI Ladder for its fourth season!
 `  |_\
       |    Learn the joy of AI scripting in my guide: The World of AI Scripting
______|______
 \        /
   .....Hinga Dinga Durgen! - SpongeBob
  `-=<.__.>=-
Draconian Devil
Squire
(id: DraconainDevil)
posted 11-21-11 03:44 AM CT (US)     5 / 19       
I knew there was somthing wrong with introduction.
Thanks for that, also i will add the links(i will just have to find them though)and also i will take care of giving a
finished result.

One thing is that in step 2 i have mentioned at the start
to copy the unit using copy button.

And after the article is complete, i might need a review from some modders.Then after that you could help me with the spelling fixes.Also great thanks for your help

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Leif Ericson
Seraph Emeritus
posted 11-24-11 04:30 AM CT (US)     6 / 19       
I would make a picture that demonstrates the exact finished product without any other modifications. It would be a way to let them know they did it right. However, the picture you added would be a pretty good intro picture if you prettied it up a bit, adding some design to make it into a screenshot.

~`o~|\  Join the fresh and exciting AI Ladder for its fourth season!
 `  |_\
       |    Learn the joy of AI scripting in my guide: The World of AI Scripting
______|______
 \        /
   .....Hinga Dinga Durgen! - SpongeBob
  `-=<.__.>=-
Draconian Devil
Squire
(id: DraconainDevil)
posted 11-24-11 04:49 AM CT (US)     7 / 19       
Well if i get time by today i will add it up soon and give the
article a makeup!

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Draconian Devil
Squire
(id: DraconainDevil)
posted 11-24-11 11:12 AM CT (US)     8 / 19       
Well the article is almost complete, but i need some review from
modders.

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Draconian Devil
Squire
(id: DraconainDevil)
posted 11-29-11 02:39 AM CT (US)     9 / 19       
Also, you might give a link to a modpack you've created or the modpack that Jatayu (SWORD_OF_STORM) made that does a similar thing with units. It might be called the 4-in-1 mod but I can't remember. Look it up in the top-rated section in the Blacksmith.
I looked up with the file, but that only made the looks of the units change, that is it added extra graphics and not the original units.
But this tutorial does with the properties as well.
Also through this only Building-Building combination is allowed.
But i will also include that as a part of this topic.

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Leif Ericson
Seraph Emeritus
posted 12-28-11 10:51 PM CT (US)     10 / 19       
This article was waiting for some comments from modders before approval. Now that the University forum has a bigger audience, I decided to bump this.

~`o~|\  Join the fresh and exciting AI Ladder for its fourth season!
 `  |_\
       |    Learn the joy of AI scripting in my guide: The World of AI Scripting
______|______
 \        /
   .....Hinga Dinga Durgen! - SpongeBob
  `-=<.__.>=-
Draconian Devil
Squire
(id: DraconainDevil)
posted 12-29-11 08:45 AM CT (US)     11 / 19       
Thanks for doing so

but i am still updating the article regularly(if you notice by the date )

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[This message has been edited by Draconian Devil (edited 12-29-2011 @ 12:45 PM).]

Draconian Devil
Squire
(id: DraconainDevil)
posted 12-29-11 12:48 PM CT (US)     12 / 19       
This article was waiting for some comments from modders before approval.
Well i believe modders will not be needing this now, but some months later they will surely need it.

Probably till then...i suppose it will lay rusting over here here.

I also am planning to create a modded multiplayer scenario to
make use of annex units to a high scale!!

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Julius999
Imposter
posted 12-31-11 11:00 AM CT (US)     13 / 19       
Why would you want to do this? I don't really see its utility.

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Draconian Devil
Squire
(id: DraconainDevil)
posted 12-31-11 12:12 PM CT (US)     14 / 19       
Why would you want to do this? I don't really see its utility.
I think i will have to submit a mod using these techniques to prove that this aspect is useful.

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Sarn
Squire
posted 12-31-11 06:30 PM CT (US)     15 / 19       
I feel like this article is a little unneeded. Annex units, while they have their uses, are something that really only is needed for very specialized mods. In general, most of the same effects can be achieved using the Map Copy function. I can, however, think of a few ways I could effectively use annexes, but in order for them to not be redundant, they need to be part of buildings that are intended to be built in normal games. As editor-only items, they would be useless because the map-copy function allows for 99% of situations that you would use this.

With regards to the content of the article itself, there are a few things I'd like to point out. First, any time you write an article on data editing, make sure you remind the reader to back up their files before they do anything. This prevents "Oh no! I did something wrong and can't fix it" syndrome. Also, I'm curious as to why you recommend against using the 4th annex slot. I've created numerous annex-sets and never had a problem with them. I've never had bugs or "overloaded" a unit. If you could send me a data file with this happening, I'd love to take a look. Also, the second question (why 4 units instead of 3?) is extremely hard to understand. I personally don't understand what you're trying to say very well and I've used annexes before.

Another recommendation would be to give some examples in the article of how this could be useful. Most people will look at this and say "I don't want to stick houses together." You need to give some reason for them to read this. One example I can think of is changing the wonder so that it automatically builds 4 watch towers, or (if you also understand insta-death (negative HP units)) having units spawn with building construction, like a villager spawning with every house you build. You need to give examples of how this article is useful to the reader.

I hope I don't come across as too harsh. I appreciate the work put into this, but I'm not sure of its usefulness and it needs a little work.

"The Dreaming God thinks that Carol should treat his impotence with viagra so that he will be more enthusiastic about the game." - Ash
Leif Ericson
Seraph Emeritus
posted 01-01-12 11:34 PM CT (US)     16 / 19       
Considering the comments of other forummers, I think you'll need to give some examples of where annex units would come in handy where map copy wouldn't. That'll probably be a condition to adding this article to the University.

I also have two suggestions:

1. Within a year from now, I predict that almost everyone will be using AGE 2.0, so I suggest that you should rewrite the article so that it uses version 2.0 instead.

2. I would use a different font in the title banner. The Old English font is difficult to read.

~`o~|\  Join the fresh and exciting AI Ladder for its fourth season!
 `  |_\
       |    Learn the joy of AI scripting in my guide: The World of AI Scripting
______|______
 \        /
   .....Hinga Dinga Durgen! - SpongeBob
  `-=<.__.>=-
Draconian Devil
Squire
(id: DraconainDevil)
posted 01-02-12 05:36 AM CT (US)     17 / 19       
@Sarn
I really agree with what you think, but i will also try changing your thoughts in some way, but for now thanks for giving such nice comments.

@Leif
I will take the suggestion into consideration, and start working on it right away.

Hope to refine this article, and help prove the usefulness of Annex Units.

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Sarn
Squire
posted 01-02-12 02:09 PM CT (US)     18 / 19       
I look forward to seeing this polished and finished. I'm working on another article about annex units, but I'm going into spawning units and other less-known applications. Once you update, I can simply remove anything from mine that overlaps.

"The Dreaming God thinks that Carol should treat his impotence with viagra so that he will be more enthusiastic about the game." - Ash

[This message has been edited by Sarn (edited 01-02-2012 @ 02:10 PM).]

AFFA the Cleric
Squire
posted 04-23-20 08:34 PM CT (US)     19 / 19       
I think i will have to submit a mod using these techniques to prove that this aspect is useful
Yes indeed is useful at all, even if I already spent much time at studying how town centers ang gates are made in data files about annexed unit... and with this method I plan to make good improvements to my own mod...


Also a big question, I spent days in making this happen also with units and not with buildings... but unfortunately, the annex sistem units just works with building and not with units... so sad, I planned for long time to do an hybrid units, but seems it can't be done in any way


SO SAD

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