Posted on 01/30/21 @ 10:15 AM (updated 02/03/21
This mod changes the in-game daytime (sun) setting to night (moon) setting. It works both in the original Age of Empires and The Rise of Rome Expansion pack, as well as Upatch.
Installing the Night Mode for the original AoE/RoR
This is an interface mod which you need to manually copy to the data folder in your default Age of Empires install location.
Make a backup of your original Interfac.drs file. Then, copy the modified Interfac.drs file found in the "Night Mode - Original Age of Empires and The Rise of Rome" folder to the data folder, usually located at:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Games\Age of Empires\data
To restore the original setting, just rename or remove the modified Interfac.drs file and restore it with your backed up original Interfac.drs file.
Note: The data2 folder is not used. You can use this mod in conjuction with any graphics.drs or empires.dat mods and it will work fine.
Night Mode does not alter any graphics or other game files besides Interfac.drs.
Installing the Night Mode for Upatch
Copy the entire "Night Mode - Upatch" folder to the Mods folder,
usually located at:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Games\Age of Empires\Mods
Then apply the mod using Mod Manager in the HD launcher menu.
You are free to use this mod in your own projects. Credit would be nice, but is not required.
Have fun playing AoE in a nighttime setting.
Credits and thanks to: The_Patriarck, Hawk_Ruralist.
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Hi PhatFish, thanks for this nice feature.
Before trying it out, I've some (hopefully not stupid) questions.
1) AoE uses the Age of Empires\data folder.
RoR uses the Age of Empires\data2 folder.
Both these folders contain an interfac.drs file of different size.
What about the one in the data2 folder?
2) is the mod fully compatible with Upatch 1.1 r4?
I don't want to mess up the AoE installation and game settings. Installing the game again with the help of an external DVD drive is a tricky thing to do, so I've experienced before.
[Edited on 02/02/21 @ 08:32 AM]
The data2 folder is not used, you only need to copy the Interfac.drs file to the data folder and the mod will work with both original AoE and RoR.
Upatch support is now added, follow the instructions given and you'll be fine.
I've downloaded and installed the updated mod and it's ok.
I checked it with my own work 'Hostage' and it looks fabulous.
Btw, I've also the "balance from v1.0 and v1.0a" mod installed. That was/is needed to play the AoE: single player campaigns and scenario's (Andrea Rosa etc.)
When the 'gamemod.drs' is copied to the "balance from v1.0a" folder, the campaigns and scenario's than can be played in night mode too.
I checked it with Andrea Rosa's "Champions of the Magnificent City" from the Angkor Wat campaign and this also looks fantastic.
Simply deleting the gamemod.drs from the "balance from v1.0a" folder and everything looks again as it always did.
Next, the Night Mode is also valid in the game editor.
This makes it possible to develop a scenario esp. meant to be played in Night Mode.
In my last post related to the "Hostage" campaign, I've stated that no more scenario's will be added, since I've been running out of ideas.
After playing a day in Night mode, I've got an idea about a single player scenario, a kind of labyrinth like thing, esp. made for Night Mode.
I've already noticed that some stealthy aspects can be added to the game, while playing in NM.
I'will have some fun with this in the becoming time.
Thanks for developing it. :)
[Edited on 02/04/21 @ 12:35 PM]
A custom scenario/campaign set in nighttime would be awesome to play! I definitely can't wait to try them out. I'm considering to get back to scenario editing with a campaign that includes both daytime and nighttime scenarios.
It's all Gold that sparkles in the night.
I've played (in a row) the scenario's of my own campaign "Hostage" and Andrea Rosa's "Hellenic Spring" (from: Senate and People of Rome, "Where Eagles Dare" (from: Gupta Dynasty) and "Yell of the Rebels" (from: Angkor Wat) in Night Mode.
My first question was, at what time will I get bored, playing the game in the night?
The answer: It didn't bore me at all.
The above scenario's took me some 16 hour to play and win and all the time, it was fun.
Because the mod only changes the colour of the maps, the gameplay itself is not affected.
My computer's memory could handle these colour settings very easy.
The games didn't slow down or got stuck at all.
Yellow things, like the Ash tree and Gold mines become more prominent things on the map, stone mines on desert ground become less striking.
One thing that got my attention. In my own maps, I'm sometimes using Gaia 'beach articles' on grass land. In Day mode it's ok but in Night mode, it doesn't make any sense, making it look very weird and unnatural.
The second question: Will my (relatively) old eyes become more tired while playing the game in NM?
The answer, again, was no. It doesn't make any difference.
Some items become less visible and that opens new possibilities in map design, using NM.
Units of player 1 and certainly units of player 7 become less visible on desert ground, esp with shadowed trees behind them.
When building a city, The Gaia tree Ash can be used like a streetlamp to enlight the road ahead eg.
As things are now, I will keep playing the game in Night Mode for a while. I like it very much.
The next step, as far as I'm concerned, would be:
Is it possible to play the game in Day mode, changing into Night mode during play time or the other way round?
Maybe a trigger can be used, let's say: When your TC is destroyed, life on the map falls into darkness, or sth like that.
Anyway, I can't find any negative aspects while playing the game in NM. It's just fun. That's why I rate this mod with a 5.
[Edited on 02/07/21 @ 09:52 AM]
Kastanje57, thank you for the wonderful review, much appreciated! I'm glad a lot of people enjoy this simple mod. Indeed it only changes the colors and there should be no performance issues whatsoever. I tried to balance the colors between playability (making sure things are not too dark). The most difficult thing would be to not alter the player colors too much (as little as possible), since some colors are shared with terrain objects.
I find that this mode works best with custom scenario's and campaigns with a more dense-like unit placement, on random maps, less so. There are many cool things you can do with the night mode setting, though be sure to always test before releasing your works.
To answer your question about having an on-the-fly (trigger-like) in-game day and night cycle, that unfortunately is not possible and most likely will never be since the interfac.drs cannot be altered during gameplay, the values are set in stone upon launching. Would have been very cool to have though, I absolutely see why you would ask this.
Again thank you for the kind review - Bedankt!
Looks amazing. You did a really great job.
Thanks for sharing!
It actually is an amazing mod. I was hesitant to install it until I found out it was compatible with the U patch, because I didn't want to be moving files.
I used it with the third scenario of Ages of Mankind and it felt really good. It contributed to the overall enjoyment. I was guiding my people in the middle of the night to take out my enemies. Pretty cool!!!