Modifying spells and abilities for Dragon age 2
This tutorial shows how to edit the gda file that contains the values used by the spells and abilities in Dragon Age 2. You can follow this tutorial to modify how spells and abilities work in your game or to make two mods that modify the same spells and abilities compatible.
Modify spells and abilities
- Download and unzip elys's tool GDApp - GDA Editor. You can unzip this tool anywhere in your PC.
- Run GDApp.exe and open the gda file that contains the spells by selecting the menu option File -> Open and then the gda file. Your file will look like the one shown in picture Spells and abilities gda file.
- Note: The default file that contains all spells and abilities is called abi_base.gda and it is inside your \Program Files\Electronic Arts\Dragon Age II\packages\core\data\2da.rim file. You can extract it using Mephales' pyGFF tool.
- In the Label column you can see the name of the spell or ability. Browse down until you find the one you want to modify.
- In this example we are going to hide the visual effect of the Arcane Shield spell, so we will browse down until finding the MAGE_ARCANE_ARCANE_SHIELD row as shown in picture Arcane shield spell row. All properties of the spell are set in this line.
- To hide the visual effects of the spell we will have to set to 0 or blank two columns:
- $BC1BA37: that contains the visual model used by the spell
- $A3229E72: that contains the animation used by the spell
- Browse to the right until you find those columns.
- Note: You can lock the two first left columns setting a 2 in the Left columns locked box as shown in picture in picture Lock columns. This way you can browse the columns to the right but you will always see the two first columns that include the name of the spell. This will help you to modify only the values of the row you want to.
- Type 0 (zero) on the $BC1BA37 column to replace the original value (301501 for the Arcane Shield spell) and press enter.
- Delete (using the Backspace key) the existing value on the column $A3229E72 (abi_m_arcane_shield.bnk for the Arcane Shield spell) and press enter
- You'll see that on the rows just below the one you are modifying there are the properties of the two improvements the Arcane Shield spell has: MAGE_ARCANE_ARCANE_SHIELD_UPGRADE_1 and MAGE_ARCANE_ARCANE_SHIELD_UPGRADE_2. Repeat the process on the $BC1BA37 and $A3229E72 of their lines.
- Save the modified file using the menu option File -> Save and entering the name of the gda file, and place it into your override folder.
- Play and enjoy!
- If the spell or ability you have modified was already active in your game you won't see the changes. Deactivate it and cast it again and then you should see the changes in your game.
- Delete all the rows of the original gda file that you have kept unchanged and save it with a unique name. This way your gda file will be compatible with all other mods except the ones that modify the same spells or abilities you've edited.
- Signo Vir's readme of his mod Sustained Visuals Disabled