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Sub-folders for MPMissions and Campaigns and new Mission selection method in-game
Acknowledged, WishlistPublic

Description

Currently only the Missions folder supports subfolders, which are a great help as we can make subfolders for cwr2, ACE, Vanilla etc and then when we launch with certain mods, we can easily identify which missions are compatible with those mods and can be played. It also makes it far easier to manage the folder and the files in it with Windows Explorer

The MPMissions folder needs to support subfolders as well, as currently if we create subfolders and put missions in those, ArmA can't see them and having everything in the root makes it a nightmare to manage in Windows Explorer.

The MP Create Game screen currently filters missions by island, which makes it very difficult to locate a particular mission and is not user-friendly. It should support subfolders so that where it currently lists islands under Map, it would show any subfolders, with the missions in the current folder listed on the right in the current Mission area. However, this list should group the missions in the current folder by island in alphabetical order, so for example at the top it would show a header Bystrica with associated islands underneath, then a Bukovina header with associated islands underneath, etc. This method would accommodate those who for whatever reason prefer not to use subfolders and have all MPMissions in the root folder and still allow them to choose a mission by island, as well as those who want to use subfolders to group missions by whatever categories (mods, islands, etc).

For Campaigns, it might not matter so much, particularly if Automatic Mod Enabling is implemented as requested here http://feedback.arma3.com/view.php?id=6428#bugnotes but it can still be useful to quickly identify, both in-game and in Windows Explorer, which missions are Vanilla, which only require mods such as ACE or CWR2 and which require a variety of mods, so I would request subfolder support for Campaigns as well.

Details

Legacy ID
2190044564
Severity
None
Resolution
Open
Reproducibility
Always
Category
Feature Request
Steps To Reproduce
  1. Go to MPMissions or Campaigns screen.
  1. Find it impossible to identify whether a mission/Campaign is Vanilla or requires mods such as ACE, CWR2.
Additional Information

https://dev-heaven.net/issues/6258#change-143799

I believe that @mod/MPMissions and @mod/Campaigns support is incompatible with the idea of Automatic Mod Management as requested here http://feedback.arma3.com/view.php?id=6428#bugnotes as for that, the missions/campaigns need to be visible for the user to select before the mods are automatically enabled for the selected mission, so disregard that part of the suggestion.

Event Timeline

doveman edited Steps To Reproduce. (Show Details)Jun 7 2013, 1:02 PM
doveman edited Additional Information. (Show Details)
doveman set Category to Feature Request.
doveman set Reproducibility to Always.
doveman set Severity to None.
doveman set Resolution to Open.
doveman set Legacy ID to 2190044564.May 7 2016, 2:28 PM
doveman added a subscriber: mod.
Terox added a comment.Jun 7 2013, 8:08 PM

I'm not sure sorting MpMissions by islands as default is a good idea.
Having the ability to "Filter" or "Sort" the mission list and having a "By islands" option would be a much better option.

The though process when selecting a mission is typically

For a vanilla mission (BIS Standard, no 3rd party addons)

  1. Type of mission, typically Coop or PVP
  2. How many players does it need to support
  3. and then a specific mission

Because missions are listed alpha numerically, many servers use a filename convention enforced by the admin for easier sorting and selection

Typically this is........

Type: Co, CTF etc
Maximum No. of players 05, 12 40 etc
Mission name
version

example co 23 MyMission v01

It starts to get a bit messy when 3rd party addons and mods are being used
Typically the "@" sign is used to indicate a 3rd party addon
and if a mod is used, this normally precedes all the other convention tags

for a mission that uses a mod an example would be
ACE co 23 mymission

and for an addon

co@ 23 mymission.

This then allows the admin to select missions in the priority

  1. By Mod
  2. Mission type
  3. With or without other 3rd party addons
  4. No. of players it needs to support

That is how it stands at the moment..................



The ideal solution could possibly require
a) Some form of automation in the filename convention
b) Subfolders for Missions requiring mods

____For the filename convention____

The mission editor should have some fields in the editor for defining the mission filename

  1. Mission type (Pull down combo, which lists options .. (co, ctf, "User defined" etc)
  2. Mod/Addon tag (Combo box reading from the required addons entry in the mission.sqm and also a "user defined" option
  3. Mission name - Text entry field
  4. Version (Number field)

Maximum No. of players. (This surely can be automated by the engine, "Count PlayableUnits")

Saving the mission then reads from these fields and creates the filename.
This will then create consistency in file naming throughout the community and allow for better filtering/sorting in an MpMission selection screen

By default, if the original mission that is loaded into the mission editor is being renamed, all the files in that mission folder should be copied over to the new mission folder (Not just the mission.sqm As is stands now)

NB>> Spaces in the filename should not be filled by %20 as it currently is now
Not sure how linux handles spaces in filenames, but windows certainly does not have an issue. All the missions on my server have their underscores replaced by a space which creates more readability



____Storing MpMissions in subfolders____

The MpMissions folder should have Sub folders used to save Mod and Addon dependant missions in.
These subfolders should be user defined and automatically loaded by defining the Sub folder name in either the Config.cfg or a command line argument

So for the following example of missions for a mod called @XYZ, the actual mission.pbo path would be

ArmA3\MpMissions\@XYZ\@XYZ co 23 mymission v1 .island.pbo

The config entry or command line would be something like
MissionFolders []={@XYZ};
-MissionFolders=@XYZ;

Allowing for multiple mission folders to be loaded (Similar to -mod=

As for the vanilla missions, you could either
a) always load by default
b) Somehow enable or disable their automatic loading

Terox, both should be the case; you should be able to sort them into subfolders, so the admin can e.g. better enable/disable missions as he sees fit (i.e. remove/add a single folder for missions e.g. requiring ACE or a certain map), plus in the game it should be sortable as you say.

Perhaps there's room for a more advanced sort/filter as you suggest Terox, although if missions are named appropriately, i.e CO 23 Mission1, then it's relatively easy to find the sort of mission you're looking for in a list.

By having the missions in subfolders, it then makes it easier to drill down and have the list only display appropriate missions, i.e. ACE or CWR2 missions. So the missions that require mods (such as those with @ in the name) would go in the appropriate subfolder and by supporting several depths of subfolder, we could have an ACE subfolder and then further subfolders within that for mission type, etc if required. Although even one level of subfolder support would allow us to keep things fairly organised in Windows Explorer and then a sort/filter method to only show missions in the selected subfolder of a certain gametype, number of players, etc would be a good combination.

So I'm suggesting that missions are sorted (manually) by subfolder rather than by island as default (which is the current method) but that the list could then group the missions by island to allow the user to quickly scroll through and see all missions in the current subfolder.

I'm afraid you've lost me with the talk of using config.cfg to define the subfolder name however. In my opinion, the user should just be able to put the missions in whichever subfolders they've created manually and then ArmA should list these subfolders for the user to select from.

may be a little off topic, but a naming standardisation built into the editor would help make this work a lot better too. Rather than just having a mission name (save name) and letting the maker do the work.
The editor should probably have the number of players entered in a field, and the gameplay type. then the rest can be up to the maker to name.

On topic, if the MPMissions was sortable by max slots it would be good, but the mission selection screen would have to parse the description.ext for each mission when the screen came up, that could slow the whole screen to a crawl with large numbers of missions.

Terox added a comment.Jun 8 2013, 12:36 PM

@ Kevsnotrev

The MpMissions is read through by the server when you start the server. I know this because any critical errors in any mission (May be restricted to description.ext only) stop the server from loading. Also if you upload a new mission and change island selection and then back, you can see that mission

So any "delay" would be minimal to gather this info and would really only occur at server start when nobody is on anyway

@doveman. I hadn't thought about automatic listing of any subfolders, thats why I added the comment about a command line parameter/config.cfg entry to point to the folder you wanted loading.

Dwarden stated that sub folders in MpMissions is already scheduled into the build. Hopefully they read this ticket in depth and use some or all of the suggestions for a good implementation

@Terox, Ah I see. Keep it simple I say ;)

Great to hear that subfolders in MpMissions is already scheduled. I too hope that some of the other suggestions in this ticket can be used as well, to make it as user-friendly as possible.

Regarding any possible delay parsing the missions, perhaps if this is an issue ArmA could store the details used for sorting/filtering (Island, playercount, etc) for all the missions in a database the first time the folder is scanned, for quicker loading next time. It would still have to scan the folder to check for new/deleted missions and add/remove those to/from the database each time ArmA is loaded but getting the details of the already scanned missions from the database rather than having to parse all the missions every time would be a lot quicker.

To allow for (probably rare) situations where the user Alt-tabs out and adds missions, perhaps a Refresh button could be added so that they don't have to close and restart Arma, whilst only automatically scanning the folder once per launch of ArmA (depending on how long it takes, either in the background as it launches or as soon as it finishes, or alternatively when first going to the MP Missions screen).

acknowledged as AIII-1257

Thanks Dwarden, look forward to seeing what you do with this :)

Is this being worked on and are we likely to see it implemented any time soon?

i can't belive that this feature would be huge work but it would be a great help for serveradmins. Any update on this?