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Julric

Xbox Patch for Campfire/Frostfall/others

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Umm, hello everyone, I'm Julric.  I've published a couple of mods on Bethesda.net including a Campfire add-on but I'm very new to modding and I have no contacts in the community.

Last Friday, I PM'd Tarshana on Bethesda.net with my finding that Game.FindClosestReferenceOfAnyTypeInListFromRef was broken on Xbox following the Skyrim Creation Club release last week. I was happy to see independent confirmation by Dracotorre and Arthmoor, as described here [https://bethesda.net/community/topic/105704/update-information-on-campfire-survival-and-the-console-solved-please-read/34].

I've built a mod ("Find Reference API Patch") that provides a fallback implementation of Game.FindClosestReferenceOfAnyTypeInListFromRef. I tested it with Campfire on Xbox One and confirmed that wood harvesting (trees) and cookpots (heat sources) work as expected.

The mod uses quests and the condition functions GetDistance and IsInList to mimic the API.  It replaces the Game.pex script to hook into the API and calls the fallback search if the native API does not return a result. It is general purpose, not specific to Campfire, so it has the potential to resolve other problems. It is slower than the native API.

I don't think I should publish it, for the simple reason that I don't know what I don't know.

I have no idea how the mod might affect saved games when people remove it after an official Bethesda patch.  I don't know how to privately distribute it for testing to a small group, or who that small group should be.  Maybe it shouldn't be published at all.  I don't know.

Recommendations?

Thanks,
Julric
 

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I think it would be best to wait for this to get fixed properly since there are big consequences to removing scripts from a running save, and it's generally not a good idea to use modified copies of base level scripts like Game.pex outside of specific things like SKSE64 on PC. That's not even something we're comfortable with doing with the unofficial patch.

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I agree with Arthmoor's concern about modifying game.pex, but:

a) that's where the broken API is defined, and
b) this patch is a temporary measure, not long-lived like SKSE64 or USSEP.

I continued private testing on the Xbox One console and also researched saved games.

Adding and removing the patch repeatedly from the load order does not cause any apparent problems in game on Xbox One. When the patch is active, Campfire and Frostfall work properly. You can harvest wood, use cookpots, get warmth from fires and access Campfire perk trees. When the patch is removed from the load order, all those features are broken again, but the game otherwise plays properly.

The FindRefAPIPatch.bsa archive contains four scripts:

_frp_quest_main.pex
_frp_quest_search.pex
_frp_game.pex (a shim loader to get a reference to the main quest)
game.pex (fallback to patch ONLY if native API produces no result)

On PC, inspection of saved games using Fallrim tools ReSaver (v2.9.8) shows that game.pex and _frp_game.pex are never persisted to game saves. Only the quest scripts and associated references are persisted. In a game save created after removing the patch, ReSaver reported 17 unattached instances that use roughly 3-4 KB of space (based on file size comparisons).

I'm much more confident in this patch now. When Bethesda releases an update with the API fix, the patch will use the native result automatically. When Xbox players remove the patch, it will leave behind only a small amount of bloat in their game saves. The patch description can and will provide information to let Xbox players make an informed decision about whether to use it.

Does this information change the calculus in any way?

Thanks.
 

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I know plenty of users would rather risk it than remove Frostfall, Campfire, and INeed mid-game... they'll be screwing up their save files either way.

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The problem is, the risk is real either way. So the best thing they could do is just leave it be and wait for it to get patched. Fallrim Tools and ReSaver are not trustworthy apps to base anything on.

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