Golden Grove, I remember you well. My first ever settlement in one-man indie endeavour, Banished. It was meant to be a utopia, where there would be food, clothes, medicine and plenty of firewood during winter for every resident. After 50 years, half the town was dead. The other half, struggling through a winter seemingly without end.
Maybe some of those poor folk wouldn’t have needed to die if I’d been using a mod that allowed me to grow food out of thin air. That glorious dream could soon be a reality, as Banished appears to be well on its way to getting oft-requested mod support.
It’s too late for Golden Grove, though.
Developer Luke Hodorowicz has revealed that he’s been working away on putting mod support in the game, and that he’s made quite a bit of progress. But it wasn’t on the cards when he started working on Banished.
“When initially writing the game engine for Banished, allowing users to modify the game wasn’t something I thought about,” he wrote. “It just wasn’t in scope – I was more interested in finishing the project in a reasonable amount of time. Hence mods, multiplayer, and a few other features that could have been great additions were off the feature list before it was even written.”
However, to speed development, he wrote a toolset that’s actually suited to mods, and he just needs to add some new features to get it up to snuff.
One such feature is support for multiple mods at one time. “What’s missing is the ability to have multiple people make additions to the game without having to patch each others raw data to combine them,” Hodorowicz explained. “I think it will be typical that many users will use more than one mod at a time – such as a translation mod, a mod that adds some pretty objects, like trees, shrubs, statues, and fences, and other mods that add buildings and professions to the game.”
Hodorowicz expects to create some mods to use as examples and write up some documentation. “The mod kit will ship with most of the original game data, to show how things are put together, and to allow game rebalances or full texture and model changes. I guess I also need to make some example mods and write some basic documentation.”
It seems like as good an excuse as any to dip back into the rather gloomy world of medieval village management.