Now that Runic is being shut down I've got nine years of stories coming back to me. I thought I'd share a few, and welcome you to share your own.
1- I was in the Mythos beta. Mythos was the coolest thing ever in its original beta: Seriously a solid Diablo competitor in a time when Diablo 3 wasn't even announced yet. When Flagship Studio shut down I was sad, but when the Seattle team got back together and founded their own company (Runic Games) I jumped on board and started a fansite for them right away. LOOOONG before there was any solid news of a game, but soon enough after Mythos to try to grab some of that old community. The community was the best part of those early days. The Runic devs had one of the best reputations for interacting with their community than I'd ever seen.
2- The fansite nearly didn't get off the ground! Early on I knew little of php or mysql or anything other than 10-year old HTML. A guy volunteered to help me and got RGF running on Wordpress and phpbb. Then he hacked one of the developer's e-mail addresses and accessed some sort of private online file server and downloaded a load of EARLY Torchlight design files. By the time he told me about it the damage was done, and Runic was threatening a lawsuit. Since the guy (whose name I don't even remember) was just some stupid high school kid I think he apologized and swore not to leak the files. Honestly it was so long ago I barely remember what happened. As a result someone at Runic wasn't sure I was on the level and asked someone else to start a rival fansite that they could trust.
3- During Torchlight 2's development a number of community members were offered to get flown out to the studio in Seattle and do a community day. I REALLY wanted to go... but I was recently unemployed and desperately job hunting. I couldn't spare the cash to even buy my own meals, and didn't want to miss the chance at any interviews. I never managed to make it out that time, but I did eventually get out to the office one day just before Hob was announced and run through a part of it. I'm glad I was able to meet everyone. Luckily, it was also the day of the company's anniversary, so they took everyone out to an expensive steak lunch. I never knew Truffle Oil French Fries were a thing, nor that they were so delicious. My favorite part of that meal was finding out exactly how much of a Trekkie Brian is, and talking about Terraria with (I think?) Matt Lefferts(?)
4- Getting beta and/or press access to all of the games was pretty awesome. It's not like I got them for free though - I put enough money into paying for website hosting over the past 9 years to more than cover it
I'll be seeing you
In all the old ember ore places
That this heart of mine embraces
All night through.
In that small old Torchlight town;
Where Ordrak's fiendish plan went down;
The Varkolyn mines;
The deep loot delves;
The fishin' wells.
I'll be seeing you
In every lovely treasure chest;
In every adventure that I play.
I'll always think of you somehow, some way.
I'll find you
In the crypts and caves.
And when the adventures true,
I'll be looking at the loot
But I'll be seeing you.
Thanks, Runic. For so much.
Lyrics by Jimmy Durante, adapted by me.
tlmodder by Jardík (jardasmid+tlmodder_at_gmail_dot_com) Build depencies: cmake, GCC 4.7+ To compile, run: cmake . make That will give you 3 executables: adm2dat dat2adm tlmodder adm2dat converts binary *.DAT.ADM, *.LAYOUT.ADM, *.ANIMATION.ADM files to textual DAT, LAYOUT or ANIMATION formats. usage: adm2dat adm_file [dat_file] If no dat_file is given, it will be printed to stdout. DAT file will be UTF-8 encoded! Mods usualy come with UTF-16 encoded DAT files, but I have chosen UTF-8 for better editing. I have no idea if Torchlight for windows will eat such files, but my modder tool will. dat2adm converts textual DAT, LAYOUT, ANIMATION files to binary ADM format usage: dat2adm dat_file [adm_file] If no adm_file is given, 'dat_file.adm' will be used as output file. Input dat_file can be UTF-8, UTF-16LE or UTF-16BE encoded, with or without BOM. If no BOM is used for UTF-16, file must start with ASCII character, which should be true for all DAT files tlmodder this is the main tool to actually make mods working under linux. Use it like this: o Open tlmodder.cfg and set MOD_DIR - path to directory where mods are stored Default is ./mods ORIGINAL_GAME_DATA - path to directory where original pak.zip archive is extracted. media directory contained in the archive must be placed here. Default is ./original OUTPUT_DIR - path to output directory. Resulting media directory will be stored here after the program is run. media directory should then be packed into zip archive called pak.zip and placed into game's directory. You should always delete all files in this directory after adding/removing a mod and before running tlmodder, to prevent conflicts. Default is ./output (generating the zip archive directly is on 'I might once implement it' list, but no promises) MERGE_CLASS_MODS - when you install multiple class or pet mods, you will get colisions for media/UI/charactercreate.layout file. Multiple mods will contain its own to add the class/pet to New game screen. If you set this option to 1, tlmodder will try to find all installed classes and pets and to generate own charactercreate.layout containing all the classes and pets. It will also try to merge item wardrobes for the classes so that gear is not broken because one mod would not contain other mod's class entry for the gear. This WILL add some extra pets even if you don't add any mods. There are some pets in the original game not included in the list in New game screen, but this mod will add them there (fire elemental, gels, and such things) This feature should be considered beta. If it doesn't work for you for any reason, set this to 0 and tlmodder won't touch charactercreate.layout and it will use the one from mod with highest priority set. LOOK_FOR_NEW - set to 1 if tlmodder should look for new mods in MOD_DIR directory. If set to 0, only mods explicitly listed in configuration file will be used. (they still must be located inside MOD_DIR directory). Any mod that is not added via configuration file will get priority 0 and then sorted alphabeticaly. o Optionaly, if you set LOOK_FOR_NEW to 0 or if you want to adjust mods' priorities and not to rely on alphabetic order, add one or more MOD sections. Default configuration file contains one such section for included "JardikRespec" mod. It is based on RespecMod and adds additional stat points potion (STR-5, DEX-5, MAG-5, DEF-5 and STAT+20). This section should serve as sample, how to configure the mod. NAME - mod's directory name within MOD_DIR directory PRIORITY - mods with higher priority will overwrite files from mods with lower priority, if they contain the same file. If the priority is the same, alphabetic order of NAME will be used. ENABLED - if set to 0, mod will be ignored and not included in resulting output directory o After everything is set, you can run tlmodder: ./tlmodder [config_file] where config_file is configuration file name. If no config_file is given, default (./tlmodder.cfg) will be used. After tlmodder is run, it will first list all the loaded mods. If any mod explicitly listed in configuration file is not found, you will be asked if continue or not. If everything goes right or you choose to continue, you will get LOTS and LOTS and LOTS of messages about what is currently being done, and it will take few minutes to complete. After everything is complete, you get Done! message and note that you should pack the resulting media directory and overwrite zip from game directory and to BACK UP you save game files (~/.runicgames/Torchlight/Save) in case something goes wrong and/or new/old mods are not compatible for some reason. With some mods, particulary "Jarcho's Class Compilation v1.3" mod, you will get errors while running tlmodder, pointing out errors detected in few DAT files. You must manually fix these issues and run tlmodder again. Torchlight for Windows seems to silently ignore them, however, I chose not to. Reason why is that one class (I can't remember which, sorry) besides closing wrong sections, actually open wrong section for skill level (LEVEL1 instead of LEVEL6 or something like that). This should be fixed to prevent mod malfunction. There is also few issues with overlapping sections in some mods, these must also be fixed manualy by edditing the dat file. Note that the DAT files are usually UTF-16LE encoded, usually with BOM. Use editor which supports it! Mods tested and working with tlmooder: InfusED The Hero's Legacy 1.10 Valkyrie2_v4.31b (I think I had to delete one [/SKILL] line in one DAT file, not sure) Emberborn ID&PortalStones Jarcho's Class Compilation v1.3 (needs few manual fixes in DAT files, two pets causing the game crash, don't remember which) ThrowingWeapons Tl2_pets BrighterMap ChainLightningLLv2_1 Enhanced Mastery DUI_AutoMap * As pointed out, tlmodder will tell you where the error is, at which line, so it should be easily fixable. Well that should be about it. If you find something missing here, let me know. MAYBE I will fix it eventually, maybe not. Point is Torchlight is too short and repetitive game and I got bored of it pretty soon and boring game means maybe no bug fixes* for this modding tool. This software is licensed under the terms of DO WHAT THE **** YOU WANT TO PUBLIC LICENSE Version 2 See COPYING file for more info