Assorted tips

This is a place for assorted map-making and modding tips which haven't grown enough to warrant a whole page yet.

Windows Virtual Store #

Windows versions since Vista have included a security feature called the Virtual Store. It prevents applications from modifying or creating files in protected locations like C:\Program Files (x86)\... by transparently performing such operations in C:\Users\%USERNAME%\AppData\Local\VirtualStore instead.

As a result, some applications may end up with conflicting "views" of what files are actually present under the Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Games\Halo Custom Edition path. This poses a problem for Halo modding and the HEK, which has traditionally used Halo's data, tags, and maps directories as editable workspaces. Users have experienced Halo loading incorrect versions of maps, and tag edits done in Guerilla not being visible to Sapien. To avoid these issues, use one of the following workarounds:

  • Take ownership of Halo's installation files. Right click the Halo Custom Edition folder, select Properties, and from the Security tab change the owner to yourself. Once ownership has been taken, any conflicting files in the Virtual Store location above also need to removed.
  • Permanently move Halo's installation directory out of Program Files (x86), e.g. to Desktop or Documents.

Animated weapon markers #

Since vehicles and weapons fire from markers, and markers can be animated, an animation which plays during a firing effect can be used to alternate fire between multiple locations or move through silos of a missile pod, for example.

Wall-climbing vehicles #

Vehicles can be made to drive up steep walls by adjusting their physics tag:

  • The ground friction value must be sufficiently high (e.g. 0.4) so that the vehicle does not slip, but not too high or else it will be unable to drive.
  • The closer that ground normals k1 and k0 are set to 1.0 and -1.0 respectively, the steeper the vehicle will be able to climb without powered mass points being disabled. For example, setting k1 to 0.999998 and k0 to -0.999998 results in a vehicle being able to climb nearly vertical surfaces.

Acknowledgements

Thanks to the following individuals for their research or contributions to this topic:

  • MosesOfEgypt (Wall-climbing vehicle tip)
  • t3h lag (Animated weapon markers tip)