[Tutorial] How-To Edit NPC Names

I am creating this guide to address this user’s question…

…but I see he also started a thread here as well over the course of my time making him this guide.

Anyway, let’s carry on.

  1. Navigate to GD’s root installation folder.

    Mine’s on my D:\ drive but default path (for Steam) is:
    C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Grim Dawn

  1. Scroll down and select/highlight ArchiveTool.exe then find zlibwapi.dll , hold down the Ctrl key, and select it as well so that both are selected. Now hit Ctrl+C to copy them both into system memory.

  1. Enter the resources folder. Press Ctrl+V to paste both files here.

  1. Right-click an empty spot in the folder and call up Powershell.

  1. From here we are going to tell ArchiveTool.exe to extract the contents of Text_EN.arc and Conversations.arc

    Just copy and paste the block of text below. Ensure that the paths are the same as yours.

    .\ArchiveTool.exe "C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Grim Dawn\resources\Text_EN.arc" -extract "C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Grim Dawn\resources"; .\ArchiveTool.exe "C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Grim Dawn\resources\Conversations.arc" -extract "C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Grim Dawn\resources"

    If everything is right Powershell should quickly spit out a bunch of text in sequence and you will have two new folders occupying the directory.

  1. Now for the actual edits. First, enter the text_en folder…

    …and copy the tags_storyelements.txt file from here then navigate to Grim Dawn’s Settings folder in it’s local saving location:

    C:\Users\YOUR_USERNAME\Documents\My Games\Grim Dawn\Settings

    Create a new folder here and name it text_en and then paste your copied text file inside of it.

    Open it up to edit it and scroll down a bit to the #NPC Names section.

    Comment out John Bourbon’s tag with a # sign but copy the text and paste it on the line below it. Lets call him Cap’n Crunch instead. Save the file and fire the game up and go talk to Cap’n Crunch.

    We managed to change his name that shows when you hover your mouse on him but his conversation window still retains the original name.

  1. Which brings us to the last bit that needs to be done. Go back to where you extracted files at earlier and enter the conversations folder you extracted there. See the file named npc_johnbourbon_reversetest_01.cnv? That’s your next target…

    …but first you need to go back two directories to GD’s root install directory…

    …and launch the ConversationEditor.exe located there. It will ask you for a Working Directory and a Build Directory on first launch. You can just give it the root install folder in both cases but for our purposes it really doesn’t matter.

    Click the little Open button and feed it the above mentioned npc_johnbourbon_reversetest_01.cnv file I mentioned just before.

    When it loads click and highlight where it says John Bourbon near the top so you can edit the name in the Text Editor down below it. Change that to Cap’n Crunch…

    …then simply press the ‘Save’ button and close the ConversationEditor.

    Now go copy your freshly edited npc_johnbourbon_reversetest_01.cnv file and head on back to GD’s Settings folder again and create another new folder in it and name it conversations and paste your file into it.

    Fire up the game and head back to have a chat with Ye Olde Cap’n Crunch again.

Wow. You did it champ.

You can now either delete your folders you extracted or hold on to 'em if ya wanna poke around some more. Keep in mind that NPC’s like Bourbon get their name tossed around in a number of other conversation (.cnv) files, so if ya wanna be technical with it you still might have a leeeetle bit more work to do. But now you’re on your way.


[Tutorial] How-To Edit NPC Names Lite version

  1. Download latest game translation:
  • For English from translations section
  • For other languages via ingame option
  1. Go to <Grim Dawn folder>/localization and place/look for your localization archive.
  2. Unzip it
  3. Edit corresponding .txt files
  4. Repack localization with edited files
  5. Play game choising modified localization
  6. You are awesome.

Wow! I’m speechless and incredibly grateful for you giving me a very clear step-by-step instruction about how to mod a game. This is very cool :slight_smile: :slight_smile: But if I want to change the names of NPCs shown on the map, when the cursor is hovering over one of those blue-ish dots on the map, can this be done too, or is it too difficult?

lol I honestly don’t know why I didn’t think about using the damned localization files. Oh well, he said he wanted to learn how to mod GD and my way at least gets his hands wet with how to use some of the modding tools I suppose.

I’m not sure about that at the moment but I’ll take a look later on when I get a chance and dig around for it.

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I have now tried to change one of the NPC names, and it worked! Found a name listed twice in the file, changed both, and now the name is also changed in the map when the cursor hovers above the blue-ish dot on the map. This is very cool :slight_smile: :slight_smile: I play Tales of Tribute, a card game in ESO, but actually had more fun making my first modification of a real official game. I want to learn more! Looks like I have found a new hobby. It also appears, I guess, that the most time-consuming challenge when modding is to know the entire file system/structure of a game so that you can locate the exact files you want to change. It was easy to change the name of an NPC when following the instructions here, but it would have taken a long time for me to figure out on my own which files I had to change, where to find them and realize that I had to use the Powershell too. But now that I got a taste of modding, and can see with my own eyes that it works, I will spend time on learning all that is required to mod other things in GD (and many other games). So thank you very much for this nice introduction to modding. You are a talented teacher.

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Yup, for full-fledged modding, you need to edit not only tags files, but also conversations and quests and etc… But if you limit yourself to only NPC names, then localization is enough)

Is there a program that makes it easier to locate things you want to change in files? Or must one go through the whole process of getting to know the file system and “manually” explore moddable stuff in it? If I do the latter with Grim Dawn, will the knowledge I get be useful later when I try to mod audio and text files in games like Crysis, Stalker, Remnant and Prey for example?

well you just need a program that can search file contents. Windows default search sucks from my short test of it. Don’t know what others are using but

Grep is perfect for mass searching, especially for content searching (within files) . There’s a few easy to use grep alternatives that work just as well, also you can use ‘everything’ to hunt down files if you already know the filenames.

Can I use Grep to locate files that have ingame conversations I want to change or search in files for text you see when opening ingame books? Sometimes you discover books or papers/notes in a game, containing info about quests etc. If I copy a sentence from such a book and paste it into Grep, will it be able to locate the file that contains this text?

Grep works for most things in GD - dbrs are just csv files, nearly everything else is contained in a .txt file. The two exceptions off the top of my head are Quests and Conversations. Grep might still work on them to find the contents of the file, you just won’t be able to edit it as easily as a dbr or txt file. You will need the QuestEditor or ConversationEditor, which is a whole other bag of worms.

I’m also interested in learning how to change audio files. For example: I heard that my character in GD sometimes speak. Is it easy to locate a specific audio file associated with a particular instance of audible speech in GD? And can I replace this audio file with another file that contains speech generated by AI? If so, which professional software program is best for such a task? Can pay for software (because I don’t want any free software if it had ads or cookies).

I will appreciate it if someone can please explain the excration and compression processes which are necessary for modding text files in general. Are these processes the same for all pc games based on Unreal, Unity, CryEngine and/or LUA? Can one use Powershell to extract any type of text files that a game might use? Or can I buy software that makes this process easier?

Have already bought TextCrawler 3 and used it to find and replace a word in Prey, in Terminator and in Remnant, but the files are just full of strange symbols and letters, and some files are in red, so I can’t do anything with them. Did manage to find readable files in Mirror’s Edge (2009) but did not extract them first. ME didn’t work after using TextCrawler to find and replace a word in the subtltles of the game. Now I can’t even download the game from Origin, the download button doesn’t work.

Have tried to ask for help in the forums of TextCrawler and Nexus Mods, but have recieved no replies yet, so if anybody here can help me out it will be great. General modding help isn’t directly related to Grim Dawn in particular, but if I learn in general how and when to extract and compress files, and identify their file format and encoding, then it will also be easier to mod GD.

I take this project very seriously, so I’m willing to invest in software programs like Adobe Audition and File Magic despite it being expensive. After I have learned to mod all kinds of texts, speech and sounds in AAA pc games I will start with modding the graphics and animations of these games, but I’m not ready for advanced modding yet. First I got to learn the basics, liike studying the different file structures of games, etc. So will be very happy if someone here has the time to show me the ropes or reccomend resources that are easy to understand.