The Variant Pack
How do I use a Variant Pack ?
Just use the
Load External Variant
button and open the
file inside the variant directory, then start a new game. That should be
enough. Alternatively, many variants are now supplied in the standard
distribution ; simply use the pop-up menu to select which variant to play (
is the Classic Titan ruleset).
What's in a Variant Pack ?
A Variant Pack should be a directory (folder) containing:
The various files are either XML-based or Java code, and at the moment there
is no proper description of the formats. Sorry.
- A mandatory
file, that describes the other files
files that describe the variant
- An optional
subdirectory that contains the new and/or changed Battlelands
- An optional
subdirectory that contains the new and/or changed pictures.
- A mandatory
Java source file that helps the AI play your variant. This is
required if you have non-standard Tower numbers. (If you
don't know Java, ask for help on the colossus-developers list.)
How do I create a Variant Pack ?
There's no user-friendly way yet. The easiest way is to build the
directory and copy the default files in it, then you can change them with
any text editor.
Warning: almost no sanity
checks are performed, and some combinations might give strange and/or
unexpected results, particurly in Battlelands (slope next to a tree, or
cliff between two bogs...). Also, ensuring consistency between the files is
up to the variant author. Battlelands can also be created using the
. There may be an easier (read: graphical) way later for
files, but don't hold your breath, as nobody is working on it yet.
You can also use other variants as examples:
- The Default variant represent the default rules set. It's a good
starting point to undesrtand the file format, and all the files in there
can be used from any variant, you only have to point at their names (in
the XML-based VAR file), or for images and Battlelands, it's automatic.
- The variants starting in TG only replace the Battlelands, it's the
easiest of all the possible modifications. Create the directories, add
a README or README.html file, copy the DefaultVar.xml file and change
the name (the XML tag name in the variant element). Now, you only have
to create new Battlelands with BattlelandsBuilder and put them in the
Battlelands subdirectory. NOTE: For the Battlelands to work, the
filename and the terrain attribute of the Battlelands element must match
one of the default Titan Battelands. Again, use one of the TG variants
as an example.
- The variant Badlands also modify the content of the masterboard
to exploit a larger number of Battlelands. This means using modifying
the XML-based MAP file, modifying the XML-based TER file (to include the
new terrains), and adding a Hint implementation for the AI to exploit
intelligently (well, not excessively dumbly, anyway) the new terrains.
- The variant ExtTitan uses a larger masterboard, and new creatures,
thus requiring a XML-based CRE file and new images. The Battelands are
the default ones here.
- Some variants (like Abyssal6) basically extends everything using
the default rules. This is the harder of the 'reasonably safe to use'
level of variants.
- Finally, there is Balrog. This one implements some of the Java
interface of the code to alter the basic Titan ruleset. An advice:
before trying to do the same, contact the developers on the mailing-list
and discuss your ideas, because that kind of variant is very hard to
create and even harder to maintain (that's why there's only one yet).
Frequently Asked Questions