The Planet Crafter savegame editing

Note: This post refers to version 0.4 of the game.

I sometimes purchase early access videogames (not yet finished and sometimes even in alpha state) to support game developers. I don't do it often, though, because being an early adopter usually means coping with a lot of bugs and sometimes having to reset your game progress.

I am enjoying the slow, calm, and non-violent pace of The Planet Crafter, but with a recent update I faced a hard choice: start a new game to experience the new content, or keep with the old game and focus on finishing all the things I can... still eventually having to begin anew.

I decided to do something in the middle: Create a new savegame, but see how to alter the file and "cheat" by transferring as much as possible.

First of all, make a backup of the Survival-X.json file located at C:\Users\<your-username>\AppData\LocalLow\MijuGames\Planet Crafter folder (or a different drive if not installed in C:).

If you open that file, you will notice that is some kind of ndjson file, but using \n@\n as the line separator.

Useful tweaks

Terraform levels

You can recover your old terraforming levels by editing the first group in the file:

{"unitOxygenLevel":156052032.0,"unitHeatLevel":52146160.0,"unitPressureLevel":7044543.5,"unitBiomassLevel":5064053.0}

Unlocked things

Another of the first blocks contains a property called "unlockedGroups", if you also set that to your old values, when you reach the corresponding terraforming levels you will have again the extra unlocks (I think they are blueprint-based). Combined with the previous tweak it's a nice progress recovery. I for example had the following value:

"unlockedGroups":"MultiToolMineSpeed1,BootsSpeed1,HudCompass,MultiToolMineSpeed2,BootsSpeed2,podAngle,MultiToolMineSpeed3,RecyclingMachine,InsideLamp1,ScreenMap1,RocketMap1,Destructor1,Jetpack2,RocketMap2,MultiToolMineSpeed4,BootsSpeed3,DisplayCase,Pod4x,Jetpack3,MultiToolLight2,RocketMap3,RocketInformations1"

How items and inventory work

For context, this is how an item description line looks like:

{"id":204986269,"gId":"Backpack5","liId":0,"liGrps":"","pos":"0,0,0","rot":"0,0,0,0","wear":0,"pnls":"","color":"","text":"","grwth":0}|

And this is how a group looks:

{"id":1,"woIds":"209872472,202646469,202558410,202173013,204755405,202003892,204986269,206167325,202455419,203517384,205709091","size":12}|

From my research on the files, the basic rules are:

  • Biomes have their items inside, but until you pick, harvest, or deconstruct them, they "don't exist" as individual items in the save file
  • An item seems to be either placed in the world (when it has a non-zero "pos" attribute value), or inside a container ("liId" property is non-zero)
  • A container can be a storage item, your inventory, the items you're wearing
  • All normal items, including storage items, have an entry as an item
  • Storage items also have an entry as an item
  • Item ids seem to be unique, but I haven't tried crafting new ones or reusing the same id
  • A group represents a container item or a special container (equipment in use and inventory)
  • A group has an id attribute, which contained items will have set as their liId attribute
  • A group contains a woIds attribute that contains a comma-separated list of item ids
  • Inventory is a special group with "id":1
  • Equipment in use is a special group with "id":2
  • All items and groups except the last one have at the end of the line a | character

I played safe and didn't altered group "size" attribute, and just in case didn't messed with the equipment in use group. Instead I placed the desired items in the inventory, booted the game and equipped them in-game.

As I haven't added new items, what I do when I want to convert an item into another is to go pick some generic materials, save and exit, and edit, replacing them by my desired item. This in practice is just changing the "gId" attribute of the item.

This is a partial list of item gIds. (there's a bigger list at NexusMods) Note that they seem to be case sensitive, and sometimes contain typos or have case inconsistencies 😅:

  • Alloy
  • Aluminium
  • astrofood
  • Backpack1
  • Backpack2
  • Backpack3
  • Backpack4
  • Backpack5
  • Bacteria1
  • Bioplastic1
  • Cobalt
  • EquipmentIncrease1
  • EquipmentIncrease2
  • FabricBlue
  • Fertilizer1
  • Fertilizer2
  • FusionEnergyCell
  • HudCompass
  • ice
  • Iridium
  • Iron
  • Jetpack1
  • Jetpack2
  • Jetpack3
  • Magnesium
  • Mutagen1
  • MultiBuild
  • MultiDeconstruct
  • MultiToolLight
  • MultiToolLight2
  • MultiToolMineSpeed1
  • MultiToolMineSpeed2
  • MultiToolMineSpeed3
  • MultiToolMineSpeed4
  • Osmium
  • OxygenCapsule1
  • OxygenTank1
  • OxygenTank2
  • OxygenTank3
  • OxygenTank4
  • PulsarShard
  • PulsarQuartz
  • RedPowder1
  • Rod-alloy
  • Rod-iridium
  • Rod-uranium
  • Seed0
  • Seed1
  • Seed2
  • Seed3
  • Seed4
  • Seed5
  • Seed6
  • SeedGold
  • Silicon
  • Sulfur
  • Titanium
  • TreeRoot
  • Tree0Seed
  • Tree1Seed
  • Tree2Seed
  • Tree3Seed
  • Tree4Seed
  • Tree5Seed
  • Tree6Seed
  • Tree7Seed
  • Tree8Seed
  • Uranim
  • Vegetable0Seed
  • Vegetable1Seed
  • Vegetable2Seed
  • Vegetable3Seed
  • WaterBottle1
  • Zeolite

Summary

Being able to recover the old terraforming parameters and unlocks, your old equipment, and optionally altering items to ease things like having your nuclear power plants and labs again, makes it kind of similar to a "new game+" mode: You maintain your progress for all practical purposes, but you will still need to rebuild your base, and gather and grow plants and flora again.

Lately I'm having fun tweaking and modifying games when either I get a bit tired of them, I finish them but want to keep playing, or simply when faced with issues like progress resets, so expect similar posts on the topic in the near future.

The Planet Crafter savegame editing published @ . Author:

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