Weapons are tweaked for game balance, as well as for eye candy (and for fun). Currently some weapons are still in need of the initial tweak (e.g., mines) and some others are half-broken (e.g., particles are off). To tweak a weapon (or any other equipment item) you have to find it in one of the base/ufos/weapons*.ufo files. Tweaking armor or other non-weapon equipment piece is similar to tweaking a weapon.
The weapon is described by a multitude of variables. Tweak the variables and test the results in-game.
- Why do the name fields begin with underscore, as in "_Assault Rifle"?
- The underscore indicates that the following text will be translateable via Gettext.
- What is the in-game effect of the "weapon" variable?
- Among others, when an alien is assigned one primary weapon from the equipment, the flag is used to tell weapon from ammo, even if it has the same "buytype".
- Does "shape" or "scale" variables also influence the size of the weapon in the battlescape?
- No. So take care that small things do not have huge inventory icons. On the other hand, it might a good idea to keep most primary weapons the same inventory shape (even if, e.g., Rocket Launcher is very long in the battlescape) and most secondary weapons the same (smaller) inventory shape. This way they fit nicely in the backpack or holster. As for ammo shapes --- enjoy yourself.
- What is the meaning of the "center" vector? Is it a translation vector or rotation or what?
- I know the middle coordinate has something to do with the z axis, probably a rotation. The first is a translation to the right, the third is a translation downwards. One unit seems to be 5 pixels on a 1024x768 screen. Note that horizontal parameter moves to the left for positive values, and vertically positive values move downwards.
- Should I scale the weapon (with the "scale" variable) so that it fills all the "shape" variable inventory box?
- Approximately, but just try to make it look nice. In particular, if the weapon has high area to background ratio (e.g. the 9mm Pistol), usually it looks better slightly smaller, unless you feel the bulkiness fits the theme (for the pistol, IMHO, it doesn't, even if it's Desert Eagle).