[Tutorial]Use the archive tool to uncompile *.arz and *.arc

First, sry for my bad English. I hope you can understand it ,and I’ll use more pics than text.

:undecided:
Some guys ask for the source of some mods
But in fact you never need the source. Every mod can be uncompiled by archivetool.exe which can be found under your game folder.

I’ll give a tutorial for how to do this.

BUT, PLEASE ASK PERMISSION FROM THE AUTHOR if you want to modify/merge any mod.
I think it’s OK if you modify a mod for personal use without permission. But if you want to republish the merged one, you should always ask for permission and credit the author for use the mod files —even these open source mods. This is basic common courtesy.

And now lets start. You should better get some base knowledge for CMD before we start:p

For easy to use, I copied ArchiveTool.exe and zlibwapi.dll to a new directory

You can also use archivetool.exe in your game folder directly.

Then you should run cmd.exe from your start menu.

Enter the folder where archivetool.exe at.

In this example:
F: (enter)
cd at (enter)

Then run archivetool, you can see the base tips
archivetool(enter)

Then I copied the arz I want to uncompile to this folder.
This is not necessary, but this can aviod to enter a long file path.

enter this command :
archivetool NCFF.arz -database F:\at\1

NCFF.arz is what you want to uncompile. You can also use a full path.
-database is used for uncompile*.arz(database records)
you should use -extract for *.arc(source files)
and F:\at\1 is the path for the uncompiled files.

press Enter, and wait for a while.
then It’s OK:D

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1 Like

First, sry for my bad English. I hope you can understand it ,and I’ll use more pics than text.

:undecided:
Some guys ask for the source of some mods
But in fact you never need the source. Every mod can be uncompiled by archivetool.exe which can be found under your game folder.

I’ll give a tutorial for how to do this.

BUT, PLEASE ASK PERMISSION FROM THE AUTHOR if you want to modify/merge any mod.
I think it’s OK if you modify a mod for personal use without permission. But if you want to republish the merged one, you should always ask for permission and credit the author for use the mod files —even these open source mods. This is basic common courtesy.

And now lets start. You should better get some base knowledge for CMD before we start:p

For easy to use, I copied ArchiveTool.exe and zlibwapi.dll to a new directory

You can also use archivetool.exe in your game folder directly.

Then you should run cmd.exe from your start menu.

Enter the folder where archivetool.exe at.

In this example:
F: (enter)
cd at (enter)

Then run archivetool, you can see the base tips

Then I copied the arz I want to uncompile to this folder.
This is not necessary, but this can aviod to enter a long file path.

enter this command :
archivetool NCFF.arz -database F:\at\1

NCFF.arz if what you want to uncompile. You can also use a full path.
-database is used for uncompile*.arz(database records)
you should use -extract for *.arc(source files)
and F:\at\1 is the path for the uncompiled files.

press Enter, and wait for a while.
then It’s OK:D

1 Like

Thanks, tried it but failed, it created the directory structure, but none of the files were in it.

After playing around a bit, it seems to be essential that the path to extract to is the full path, not a relative path. When it was relative only the dirs got created, only when I made it the full path did the files get created… finicky tool :wink:

:stuck_out_tongue: yes. you must use full path as path to extract, really finicky

BUT, PLEASE ASK PERMISSION FROM THE AUTHOR if you want to modify/merge any mod.
I think it’s OK if you modify a mod for personal use without permission. But if you want to republish the merged one, you should always ask for permission and credit the author for use the mod files —even these open source mods. This is basic common courtesy.

Can’t stress this enough - if you want to make your own changes to a mod, fine do it, have a blast!

If you release it… you better

  1. Talk to the creator of the mod to see if they are ok with that
  2. Make sure people know it’s not YOUR creation. You borrowed someone else’s work to improve it or improve your own mod.

Anyone who does otherwise is looking for trouble.

:undecided: In fact the creation ownership is not the only problem.
The ownership of mod is not a really important thing (to me ,at least:p) – the mod are free
The thanks and applauses from players will make me happy, but i think it doesn’t matter for some one don’t know who make this.

HOWEVER. a really important problem is:
For a modder who want to keep up his work, chaotic versions always make troubles. Modified versions may cause bugs. And even players can not give feedback to the origin authors.
The modified version also may give new players mistaken impression of the mod-- maybe they even don’t know this is a modified version if the modifer is an asshole that not credit the author

I think these is really sucks to a modder.
And such things already happend for many mods/free games. I hope this will not happend for GD.

I will emphasize this point: anyone caught stealing other people’s work on this forum will not be welcome here for long.

:cool:

cftx - yes all those are also very good reasons, there are way too many reasons to list, some are personal and others are general reasons.

LOL, really ?
what are you going to do ?

internet shame them ?
LOL

not let them join your multiplayer game ?
HA HA HA

you really think they care ?

I was thinking along the lines of a ban from whatever website they’ve uploaded to if they’re caught, pretty sure most mod websites don’t allow non-authors to upload content and say it is theirs and Zantai already made it quite clear it won’t be tolerated on the forums so…

do you really need it to be spelled out?

Worth noting for the inexperienced with command prompt that if you need to type out a file path structure with spaces in it, put quotes around the file path:

Good tutorial, cftx!

We should probably start recommending to and encouraging modders to talk about how they wish to be credited for their work in the release posts of their threads. I know adoomgod and I don’t especially care but from the last couple days I think its obvious we need to make that disclosure more public.

Would anyone know how to re-compact folder into an archive? I thought it would be intuitive once I finally figured out the extraction.

Basically i’m typing:

File/path/to/folder -add file/path/to/directory/where/archive/will/go (thefolder name) and 9

9 is for the compression settings? I probably typed the damn command WAY wrong, but I was trying to copy the instructions listed in cmd by the archivetool itself.

Does anyone know why the ArchiveTool.exe crashes? (It only worked once in the beginning, but after that just crashes)
I even get the crash when I do the extraction manually in CMD using following command in the game folder:
ArchiveTool database.arz -database E:\GDmod

I even did a clean install, still wont work.
I don’t know if I need to remove something in the registry (REGEDIT)

All I found was tutorial.

The tool only crashes for me :frowning:

Thanks for the tutorial!

i’m trying to get the regular skills extracted with a copy of the arz

archivetool d:\projects\grimmodtools\data\database.arz -database d:\projects\grimmodtools\data\out\

it either crashes, or closes appearing to have done nothing

weird. I don’t know why you put the database.arz there, but you should be able to extract it in the format.
I tried with your format and extracted as specified.

ran it from the directory the db copy was in, with only the target path being fully qualified and it worked.

It may be because you did not specify the file location exactly. As Ceno writes, if there is a space in the middle of the path, the path will not be recognized until the end unless you quote the whole one.

You don’t even have to create a folder to extract in advance. In the following format, ArchiveTool automatically creates the specified folder and starts extraction.

archivetool "D:\Steam\steamapps\common\Grim Dawn\database\database.arz" -database d:\projects\grimmodtools\data\out\

For Windows 10, there is an easy way to copy the path.
If you right-click on database.arz while holding down the Shift key, the “Copy Path” item will appear in the context menu, and you can select it. So you will get a quoted path.