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Nems

So how about that mod support for Battlefield 3, eh?

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DICE's/EA's answer: nope.avi

Some article from MODDB said:

We will not deliver mod tools in the way that we delivered them for Battlefield 2 ... Creating mod tools today - dumbing them down - takes a lot of energy and what we are discussing more every day is, 'Where do we put our focus?' ... Right now our focus is to create the best possible multiplayer, single-player, and co-op game -- the core game of Battlefield 3," he added. "We're still discussing how we handle modifications of any kind.


Whole thing can be found here.

I'll admit it's disheartening to hear that there won't be any. At the same time, I don't know the first thing about modding modern games (or any games for that matter) so I'm in no way able to say if their claim on the matter is legit.

Thoughts on this?

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Nems said:

Thoughts on this?


Doom didn't come with any mod tools at all, other than a cryptic -file option that only die-hard .exe hackers would've discovered back then (was it even mentioned in any of the official docs, at least at first?).

And AFAIK, id never made available any of their own tools (other than the source code for idbsp), but it was the community, through trial and error, that came up with tools of varying quality for the job. Want proof? The unofficial Doom specs guide, which lost none of its validity all these years, and id never officially contributed to it, AFAIK.

OK, that was 1993 and this is 2011, and surely there must has been a complexity singularity or two in nearly two decades, so that it's unrealistic for some basement-dwelling hacker to single-handedly write an "unofficial Battefield 3 specs" type of guide. But....you never know. Maybe some Korean or Chinese guide will pull it out :-p

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It sounds to me that they want to provide it in the future, probably after the console ports are done and out at least. It's not the worst case IMO; plenty of games never get official support.

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Honestly, I'd rather have no mod support since these companies don't bother to make their mod tools user-friendly, anyway. Look at Call of Duty 4 and World At War. There's mod tools, but the developers didn't bother to support them or make them user friendly (like Valve and Bethesda do), so there's barely any mods for the games.

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Honestly I'm a lot more interested in just playing Battlefield 3.

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caco_killer said:

There's mod tools, but the developers didn't bother to support them or make them user friendly (like Valve and Bethesda do), so there's barely any mods for the games.

Can't say about Bethesda, but Valve doesn't bother either, they just dump out publicly what they use internally, and that's basically the old Quake 1 tools with expanded limits for their new engines.

The big thing about having mods for the games is mostly popularity. Almost all serious PC gamers had Half-Life 2, so let's make Half-Life 2 mods! (Most "TCs" don't require HL2 itself, just the source engine.) That thunder seems to have been stolen by Unreal Engine 3 going free.

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caco_killer said:

Honestly, I'd rather have no mod support since these companies don't bother to make their mod tools user-friendly, anyway. Look at Call of Duty 4 and World At War. There's mod tools, but the developers didn't bother to support them or make them user friendly (like Valve and Bethesda do), so there's barely any mods for the games.


You'd rather have no mod support? You must be insane. A pack of undocumented, unusable tools is better than no tools. They didn't put in any effort with the tools for C&C Generals either, but lots of good stuff happened anyway.

The impression I got from Bethesda with Fallout 3 was they had been working to make their tools more usable, even just by working on a wiki for them. Maybe they decided giving a bunch of stuff to PC players will shut them up about games designed for consoles.

It's understandable that creating professional-looking visual content is really hard with modern games, but saying nobody could make a mod is a stretch. It surprises me the tools don't end up more refined too. It's easier for developers to work with better tools that have some kind of organization and yet we find the editors released for many games barely even work.

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Shaviro said:

Short-sighted business models FTW!


Do you have any research or examples that indicates packaging mod tools extends the commercial life of a title, barring the obvious Half-Life example (which came out about a decade and a half ago at this point)?

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Aliotroph? said:

You'd rather have no mod support? You must be insane. A pack of undocumented, unusable tools is better than no tools. They didn't put in any effort with the tools for C&C Generals either, but lots of good stuff happened anyway.


Yeah, I don't see the point if the developers don't bother to make the tools user friendly and give some sort of support for them. Other games, such as Doom, Resident Evil 4, and GTA: San Andreas are exceptions. People went through the effort of making decent tools and providing support for them. If nobody bothers to do anything like that, then very few mods will be made.

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Ralphis said:

Do you have any research or examples that indicates packaging mod tools extends the commercial life of a title, barring the obvious Half-Life example (which came out about a decade and a half ago at this point)?


Being able to tinker with a game in obvious -and non-obvious ways- surely made them more attractive to the hacker/hex editor guy back in the day.

But if by "mod tools" we include the narrower concept of a "make your own levels" functionality bundled even with some 80s (and even console games), then yeah, they surely do buy a game some time, assuming that it's worth playing to begin with. E.g. think of 4D Sports Driving, which had a complete level editor + replay recording system.

Otherwise, if you have a title such as CyberBykes in your hands, you can be moddable as you like, but none will really bother with it ;-)

I recall Psygnosis' underrated game "Pyrotechnica" actually had a very moddable structure (complex 3D levels were defined in text files), and there was even a HACKER.TXT file hidden somewhere saying that "since you have no life, we might as well tell you how to alter stuff" or something to that effect" ;-)

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