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some plans for some Visual Basic

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I know this game is "getting old", but its still the best one I've seen for modeling characters into situations for short video or graphic pictorials.  Not everybody uses it for the more risque reasons, though, admitedly, an online pal of mine showed it to me since he was into eroge and similar.  It's been a long time, and I've been following the development as best I can.

Hook seemed a great project, but until recently, I really never figured out how it could really work.  Pass files are the tough part.  While the basic structure is uniformly built, the overall structure is far from uniform, making it difficult to actually get anything to function most of the time.  I have had a few successes, which were haphazard, and basically a fluke each time.  I tried setting up my own pass files afterward, and still had problems, although, once again, there were a few successes.  Here's the other problem, It's hit and miss for where hook will place your chosen pieces.  I've had skins show up on the wrong model most of the time.

These are just my issues though.  Just because I'm having a little trouble with the interface and I'm not perfect with that, doesn't mean I'm not having fun with it.  I have had a few small successes, but the time it takes to get these to function makes it prohibitive.

So I had an idea.  Pass files are just basic txt files.  I'm not awesome at it, but I'm pretty sure I could write an interface in VisualBasic that would be able to output functional pass files for a standard body, I think I can find those parts alright.  However, while I was working with this idea, I also came across another issue.  Not all bodies carry the same elements, or the same dimensions.  The body files need to match the hook pass files and graphics in order to show up properly in the game.  This is probably where I've been having most of my issues in the customizer, since matching the body files to the hook interface isn't exactly an easy task.

My idea here is to build an app that will take in graphics, add a few basic ones as defaults, and output pass files that can be read by hook.  The coordinates and all must first be read from another pass file for the given body, a default set in case any piece is not configured; then each piece of the body will bring up its own menu, with the default already selected and the output set, until another is selected and the output changed to match, with all the coordinates still correct.  This won't ensure that the graphics are sized for the bodymesh used, but it will only ensure that the pass files are created by selecting the appropriate graphics.  The secondary files that are necessary only need be appropriately named, or found by looking in the same folder for the same part being overlayed.  This seems simple enough.  Things like eyes could be set correctly in this manner, along with other piecemeal parts.  Not necessarily foolproof, but closer to a hook setup interface.

I'm still going over the hook5 documentation on this site to see what I've missed that's causing me headaches.  Ultimately, I hope I can decipher it soon, and build an alpha to test.  I haven't had much practice with it, but I'm pretty sure I can get this to function as follows:

1. The ability to select sets of body parts from different folders and copy them to a new one, creating a new body folder for use from the activemod folder

               A. The body mesh and graphics would be copied together, and a pass file created for them

               B. From the selections of parts, a body pass file will be created and a body folder in activemod that can be turned on from the customizer or pose-edit

2. Similar capability as above for a head etc with a matching name so you can select both parts from the customizer etc

3. The ability to remove the folder from use, and from the activemod area to free up working memory.


I'd also create a dialogue that allows you to select or create a template that could be used on files kept outside of the main game folder, so you could keep a repository of them wherever you wanted, you'd only ever have to call them up, copy them to where they need to go and then run it.

I'm building the algorithm right now, but if anybody thinks this sounds cool, I got the idea from the other project stored here, the pass file creator.  I haven't tried it yet but I intend to when I have a new room to mess with.

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