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 TW word translation 
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Unread post TW word translation
With Botlink coming out, I'm looking at ways I can improve the ability to customize TW output. There have been many requests over the years to provide a string table and allow gameops to substitute their own text for words like "Federation", "FedPolice", etc. I think the time is right to do this. I've looked at adding a generic word translation system, and though it would be the easiest approach to implement, it has problems. For example, what if a word to be translated is in a menu or report that has strict formatting? It could throw off the formatting. Also, what about cases where that word is used by a player, maybe in a name, ship name, or even comms? These kinds of complications lead me to conclude that a better, more controlled and more efficient solution would be to create a list of words that are available for translation, and specify where in the code those words are to be translated. I don't think there will be that many words to translate, so it might be doable.

I'm wondering if people could provide a starting list of words that they'd like to be able to translate so I can assess how difficult this might be. Here are some I can think of:

Federation
FedComm
Feds
Fed
Federals
FedSpace
FedLaw
FedShip
FedPolice
Federal
Terra
Underground
Kal Durak

The FedPolice are already going to be customizable through the Feds object, so they won't need to be translated. Are there any other translations that would be useful? Words that show up in the game text that can't be modified in any official way? This doesn't need to be a complete list. Once this system is in place, it'll be easy to add to it upon request. But I need to assess the initial list and decide how best to go about this.

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Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:05 pm
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
By FedPolice, are you talking about being able to change the names of Zyrain and the other two? Sorry, I haven't been keeping up on the Botlink discussion.

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Mon Jan 16, 2012 7:48 pm
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
One of the objects in Botlink is a Bosses object, which includes the three Feds, plus an additional Fed I've thrown in. You can interact with the Feds through this object, change their names, their ship's names, etc, and even control their movement. In addition, there are a total of 100 slots for custom Feds, 100 slots for custom Pirates, room for me to add additional kinds of bosses, plus 500 slots for you to create your own completely custom bosses. So that's going to be highly customizable.

What I'm talking about here is the ability to do word translations in the TW output. Let's take the word "Federation", for example. You see that in lots of different places, for example when you're starting FedComm, you see the text "Federation com-link". Well, suppose you want to change the Federation to "the Alliance", to fit your own fiction. You can change the Feds to whatever faction name you want, give them your own ship names, etc, but you'll still see that word "Federation" in several places in the game. Not only that, but as I showed, many different variations of "Federation" like FedSpace, FedPolice, FedComm, etc. In order to allow a gameop to "skin" the TW output so it fits a theme, I'd like to allow these words to be given translations. So you'd set "Federation=Alliance" and "FedPolice=Sentinels" or whatever. Then wherever those words appear in the game's text, they'd be translated.

My question here is, what other words would people like to be able to replace?

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Tue Jan 17, 2012 1:20 am
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
Stardock
Becon
Ship
Planet
Space
Sector
Fighter
Genesis
Photon
Probe
Command=[TL
Command
TL
That internal game on stardock i never play but people have scripts to autowin

P.s. would have the unintended benefit of breaking scripter side scripts unless they adjust the scripts for the new words. So a indivudal could skin the game and would prevent "bot-babies" from ruining their fun. More control for the sysop without needing a ton of toggles.

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Tue Jan 17, 2012 9:23 am
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
I can definitely see "StarDock". But I'm not sure about some of these. What would you change "ship" to? I mean, whether you're Star Wars, Star Trek, Babylon 5, Dr. Who, or your own unique fiction, a ship is a ship. And you can call it a Whirligig, but ultimately, functionally, it's still going to be a ship. I'm looking more at proper names of people, places and things in games. They'll still function the same way, but we can call them different things. A ship is a ship, but the "Intrepid" could be given a more sinister name like the "Devastator" or whatever.

I definitely see what you're saying about allowing gameops to trip up scripts by changing these common words. But the difficulty is that these appear in so many places that it will be a major undertaking to tag them for substitution. I've decided that the best approach is to take specific words for substitution rather than just filter all output, so it'll be a lot more efficient. So a word with the Translation tag, {T}Someword{t} will scan the translation list for a substitution, but if the same word appears in the game without this tag, it'll show as-is. That means if you substitute "Federation", but a player uses "Federation" in a planet name or something, it'll still show as "Federation". So I think this is the best approach. But it also requires some work to get those tags in place. I've already done it for the list I provided. I'll add "StarDock", "Genesis", and "Photon" from your list.

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Tue Jan 17, 2012 11:11 am
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
John Pritchett wrote:
I can definitely see "StarDock". But I'm not sure about some of these. What would you change "ship" to? I mean, whether you're Star Wars, Star Trek, Babylon 5, Dr. Who, or your own unique fiction, a ship is a ship. And you can call it a Whirligig, but ultimately, functionally, it's still going to be a ship. I'm looking more at proper names of people, places and things in games. They'll still function the same way, but we can call them different things. A ship is a ship, but the "Intrepid" could be given a more sinister name like the "Devastator" or whatever.

I definitely see what you're saying about allowing gameops to trip up scripts by changing these common words. But the difficulty is that these appear in so many places that it will be a major undertaking to tag them for substitution. I've decided that the best approach is to take specific words for substitution rather than just filter all output, so it'll be a lot more efficient. So a word with the Translation tag, {T}Someword{t} will scan the translation list for a substitution, but if the same word appears in the game without this tag, it'll show as-is. That means if you substitute "Federation", but a player uses "Federation" in a planet name or something, it'll still show as "Federation". So I think this is the best approach. But it also requires some work to get those tags in place. I've already done it for the list I provided. I'll add "StarDock", "Genesis", and "Photon" from your list.


Understood, I was throwing out generic terms and the Klingons don't call ships a ship.. It's a "Duj"! :P

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Tue Jan 17, 2012 5:12 pm
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
Oh, ok, so a language translation would make sense. Something to think about.

As I was tagging the words in my original list, I kept spotting words I thought should be tagged, and the list kept growning. Here's what it is now:

Corbomite
Federation
Genesis Torpedo
Limpet
Photon Missile
Photon Torpedo
Quasar Cannon
Sub Space
TransWarp
Ambassador
EtherProbe
Observer
Armid
Atomic Detonator
Consular Vessel
credits
FedLaw
FedPolice
FedShip
FedSpace
Hardware Emporium
Interdictor Generator
Ion Cannon
Kal Durak
StarDock
Tavern
Terra
The underground
Tri-Cron
U.F.P.
Warp
Warp Lane

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Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:41 pm
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
I guess it shouldn't surprise me that some people get so bent out of shape over features that seem so uncontroversial. I have had many, many requests for the ability to customize TradeWars text, but I don't expect this to impact most players. If a major public site owner does create a "skinned" game on his or her server, it will probably only be one novelty game, and will be easy for players to avoid if they feel that it detracts from the gameplay experience. However, if there are concerns about how this feature will impact the game, there's no reason why I can't allow the player to choose whether to use standard text or custom text. A setting in the computer, personal settings menu could allow you to turn off this text substitution, just like you can choose to use a standard or custom skin on a forum or other website. That's actually one of the advantages of doing it this way instead of having gameops hack the game and files to change text themselves (which some have done).

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Wed Jan 18, 2012 1:44 am
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
I think anything that will help a gameop create the kind of game they want to create is great. It would be nice if that after skinning an edit, it could be exported to a twa file.

H

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Wed Jan 18, 2012 8:20 am
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
It would be exportable, Helix.

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Wed Jan 18, 2012 10:12 am
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
John Pritchett wrote:
It would be exportable, Helix.

Speaking of exporting , I had an edit that I had to make a Alien.nam file because
when it was exported that was not with the twa.

Not sure why unless its because it was in a default folder or gold or other.
And the Tool to make that does not install any more , but still works if you have it (the exe)

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Wed Jan 18, 2012 12:48 pm
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
The .nam file need to be in the local game directory's Gold sub-directory to export. Originally, the name file was pulled from the shared Gold directory off of [TWGS]\Game, but that created too many issues with TWA files overwriting existing files by the same name. It's just better to have multiple versions of the file in the local game directory. If you change one that's used by more than one game, you'll need to propagate that out yourself. That's just safer than putting everything in one file and potentially nuking your existing name files when you import a TWA.

You're probably right, though, the name builder probably does default to that original directory. It needs to be updated.

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Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:41 pm
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
thank you , I'll move it to the GameLetter/gold folder so it gets exported next time out.

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Wed Jan 18, 2012 9:36 pm
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
For anyone interested, here's what the current word substitution list is looking like. The entries are case-sensitive, so you'll see lots of combinations of cases, like "the Federation" and "The Federation". You'll also see entries like "the Federation[16]". The [16] means that's the maximum width supported for that entry. So that's treated as a unique entry even if there's another "the Federation". That way you can use a substitution that fits within the specified width, abbreviating of necessary. Anything longer than that width will be truncated.

These substitutions apply to any text in the game, even when found in a menu or ANSI.

a Corbomite Reaction
a Fed
a Federal
a Federal[09]
a Federal[12]
a Federation
a Federation[12]
a Federation[20]
a FedShip
a FedSpace
a FedSpace[21]
a Genesis Torpedo
a Limpet
a Photon
a Photon Missile
a Photon Torpedo
A Photon Torpedo
a Quasar Cannon
a Sub Space
a subspace
a TransWarp
Ambassador
An EtherProbe
an Observer
An Observer
Armd[04]
Armid
Armid[06]
Armid[17]
AtmDt[05]
Atomic Detn.[15]
Atomic Detonator
Atomic Detonator[23]
Atomic Detonators
Atomic Detonators[17]
Atomic Detonators[25]
atomic reaction
Consular Vessel
Corbomite
Corbomite detonation
Corbomite device
Corbomite devices
Corbomite Devices
Corbomite Devices[25]
Corbomite Devs.[23]
Corbomite explosion
Corbomite Level[15]
Corbomite Transducers
Crbo[04]
credits
Credits
Credits[07]
Credits[08]
Credits[10]
Credits[15]
Earth[08]
Emporium
Ether Probe
Ether Probes
Ether Probes[12]
Ether Probes[15]
Ethereal Probes[23]
EtherProbe
EtherProbe[11]
Fed
Fed.[07]
FedComm
Federal
Federal[13]
Federation
FEDERATION
Federation[10]
Federation[14]
Federation[18]
FedLaw
FedPolice
FedPolice[28]
FedShip
FEDSHIP
Fedspace
FedSpace
Genesis
Genesis device
Genesis Torp[12]
Genesis Torpedo
Genesis Torpedoes
Genesis Torpedoes[25]
Genesis Torps[15]
Genesis Torps[23]
grimy Trader[13]
GTorp[05]
Hardware Emporium
Hardware Emporium[20]
Imperial StarShip[18]
Interdict[11]
Interdicted
Interdictor
Interdictor generator
Interdictor Generator
Interdictor[12]
Interdictor[15]
Ion Cannon
Kal Durak
KAL DURAK
Kal Durak's
Limpet
Limpet[06]
Limpet[10]
Limpet[15]
Limpet[17]
Limpet[21]
Lmpt[04]
Observer
Observer[18]
Phot[04]
Photon
Photon Missile
Photon Missile Wave
Photon Missile[15]
Photon Missiles
Photon Missiles[15]
Photon Missiles[23]
Photon Missiles[25]
Photon Torpedos
Photon Wave
Qcannon
QCannon
Q-Cannon
Quasar
Quasar cannon
Quasar Cannon
Quasar Cannon[16]
Space Police
StarDock
StarDock[18]
Stardock[28]
StarShip[08]
StarShips[12]
sub-space
Sub-space
SubSpace
Sub-Space
Sub-space[10]
Sub-Space[10]
SubSpace[12]
Tavern
Terra
Terran
The Emporium[15]
the Emporium[19]
the Federation
The Federation
the Federation[14]
The Federation[14]
the Federation[15]
the Federation[16]
the Federation[19]
The Federation[19]
The Federation[23]
the Federation's
the Feds
The Feds
The Lost Trader's Tavern[33]
the Stardock
the StarDock
The StarDock
The Stellar Hardware Emporium[33]
the tavern
the Tavern
the Underground
The underground
trans warp
Transwarp
TransWarp
TransWarp Drive
TransWarp[10]
TransWarp[13]
TransWarp[18]
TransWarp[19]
Tri-Cron
TRI-CRON
Tri-Cron[16]
T-Warp
TWarp[05]
T-warp[08]
U.F.P.
U.S.S.
Underground
warp
Warp
Warp Lane
Warp[06]

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Thu Jan 19, 2012 4:30 am
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Unread post Re: TW word translation
I can see how this can open up whole new generations of games. A 3 games connected, 1 Federation, 1 Klingon, 1 Romulan. Each individually skinned with their own terminology..... Add the neutral zone...

Farscape, the regular universe and dark territories.
Firefly, Alliance space and the fringe.
Stargate....

Its staggering.... Once you build in a way to connect the universes (ie individual games. (or botlink does it it.) Look out.

H

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