MUA1 MOD INSTALLATION GUIDESECTION 6: MOD ORGANIZER 2 (MO2)
Logo by Outsider
Mod Organizer 2 (MO2) is an extremely useful program for organizing your mods. It allows you to install mods to your game files without overwriting files. This means you can easily install and uninstall mods and restore default content. It’s also useful for removing any files that could be causing problems in your game. It basically eliminates the need for reinstalling the game every time you mess something up. Note the MO2 only works for the PC version of the game, not consoles. Note
: If an image is too small, click to expand it.
Installing the program is a very simple process.Spoiler
You can download MO2 from this link on NexusMods
, where you can also find more information about the program and its creators. Go to the Files tab and choose “Manual Download”. You need to have an account with them to download files. You must download version 2.4 or later (this should be the default option). You can also download it from their GitHub link
, where you won’t need to create an account.
Next, double-click the installer to start it. If Windows Defender tells you not to run the program, simply press “More Info” and then “Run Anyways.” It has been tested to be safe.
Follow along with the installer. Accept the licensing agreement. Then, choose where the main files for MO2 should be installed (the default location, C:\Modding\MO2, is recommended). Choose the settings for a recommended install. You can choose to add a start menu folder if you wish. I personally prefer to create a desktop shortcut, but that's up to you. At the end, you'll confirm your choices, and then the program will install.
Now that you’ve installed MO2, there are a few more things you'll need to add to get the program ready to run MUA1. First, you’ll need to download the handler plugin for MUA1, which was made by MrKablamm0Fish. You can download it here
. Once you download it, put it in your MO2 files in “MO2/plugins/basic_games/games/”
If you’re using the 36 or 50 Roster Hacks, there are a few extra steps you need to take to prevent conflicts. Download the MO2 files to add to MUA1
, and then put them into your game files. Overwrite anything that it asks you to overwrite. THE ROSTER HACKS WILL NOT WORK WITH MO2 IF YOU DO NOT INSTALL THESE FILES. YOU MUST INSTALL THEM TO YOUR BASE GAME FILES FOR THE ROSTER HACKS TO WORK WITH MO2
Now that you've properly installed MO2, it's time to configure it for your game. Spoiler
Launch MO2. It will ask if you want to create a global instance or a portable instance. Portable instances are a bit easier to use, because all the files are in one place. However, you have to create a fresh installation of MO2 for each game you want to use. Because of that, I recommend creating a global instance
. You'll only have to install the program once, and you can use it for multiple games.
Next, you'll want to browse for your Ultimate Alliance game files. Mine are in C:\Users\(my user)\Documents\Activision\Marvel - Ultimate Alliance
, so I navigated to that folder. If you installed the handler plugin correctly, you'll be able to proceed.
Once you've located your game files, you can choose a name for the instance. I prefer to keep it simple, just naming it "Marvel - Ultimate Alliance".
Next, you'll be able to choose where the specific data for your game will be stored. The default location is C:\Users\(your user)\AppData\Local\ModOrganizer\Marvel - Ultimate Alliance
. I prefer to change mine to a folder on my desktop where I keep all my mods. You're free to choose another folder. However, keep in mind that C:\Users\(your user)\AppData\Local\ModOrganizer\Marvel - Ultimate Alliance
will still be used for crash dumps and error logs, but the folder you specify here is where you'll install your mods.
You'll be presented with a popup that asks if you want to connect to your Nexus Mods account. Feel free to do so, but it's not required. Lastly, you'll see all your settings one more time, and you can either confirm them or proceed. If you proceed, MO2 will set everything up, and you'll be ready to install mods!
Now that you’ve properly set up MO2 for MUA1, it's time to learn how to use it!Spoiler
Once you press Finish after creating your new instance, MO2 will launch your instance, and then it will give you the option to go through a tutorial. I highly recommend following along with the tutorial, since it’s coming straight from the creators
. However, be aware the not all the information is 100% relevant to MUA1 modding.
This is the user interface for MO2. I’ve highlighted the 4 areas that are important to MUA1 modding: the Install Mods button at the top left, the Mods panel in the middle left, the Data tab on the middle right, and the Run button at the top left. The install button allows you to install new mods to your game. The Mods panel shows you which mods you have installed, and which of them are active. The Data tab shows you how your game files will be interpreted with the mods (basically, which mods are creating/replacing which files). The Run button is how you launch the game. If you’re using MO2 to install mods, you must always launch the game through MO2 for the mods to work.
Now it’s time to install some mods! For this tutorial, I’ll be installing the OCP 2.3 and the 36 roster hack to show you how the installation process works. First, press the “Install a new mod from archive” button at the top left. This will bring up File Explorer. Navigate to where you have the OCP 2.3 saved. Make sure it is still packaged as a .zip file or other type of archive.
Next, MO2 will bring up the Install Mods dialog. At the top, you’re able to choose the name of the mod for MO2’s internal use. You can name it anything you want, but make sure you know what it is. Here you can also toggle which file are installed, as well as how the files are arranged. For the mod to be properly arranged, you want to make sure that the game folders (actors, data, etc) are always listed directly under “marvel – ultimate alliance”. This will allow MO2 to properly place the new files into your game. Below is a screenshot of the right way vs the wrong way.
I’m deselecting the Changelog folder I don’t need that for the mod. Since I want to use my Xbox One controller with the game, I will choose to use the controller support folder, but right now the files are in the wrong place for MUA1. First, I want to open the “More controller support” folder and deselect everything except for the X1 files. Then, I moved those textures to the “texs” folder of the main game files. I also deselected the files that are being replaced. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to rename files in this dialog, but that can be done later. Once you’re happy with the setup, you can press “OK”. MO2 will then install your mod. Note
: For most mods, you don't need to rearrange the files. They will almost always be in the correct places. And the only time you ever really need to deselect files is anything like readme files, since they don't contribute to the mod's usage in the game.
Once MO2 installs your mod, it will show up on the left panel. Over on the right, you can hit the “refresh” button under the Data tab, and then look through the files to see what’s being replaced. Make sure you check the box next to the OCP 2.3 to enable it first. In the Data tab, every file that’s coming from your mod will now show “Official Character Pack 2.3” under the “mod” column. If the file is being replaced (or if it exists in multiple mods), the name will show up in red. If the file is being added (or if there is no conflict), the name will show up in black.
Now I want to rename the controller fix files so that they’ll work in my game. On the left, double-click the name of the mod. This will bring you to the Filetree. I then went to the “texs” folder, right clicked the files, and chose “Rename”. Only rename files if you know that it’s necessary. After refreshing the Data tab, I can see that the OCP 2.3 is now replacing these files.
The power of MO2 is that you can install multiple mods and choose which files replace one another. To demonstrate this, I’ll be installing the 36 Roster Hack next. The process is the same as with MO2, but if you’re installing one of the roster hacks, deselect the “dinput8.dll” file and the “plugins” folder, since you installed those to your base game. You MUST always deselect the "plugins" folder and "dinput8.dll" when you install either the 36 roster hack or the 50 roster hack with MO2
Once you install the mod, be sure to check the checkbox next to its name. You’ll also notice that now on the right of the left pane, the “Priority” column has different values. Mods with higher priority are listed at the bottom, and their files will be used over mods with lower priority. The smaller their priority number, the lower priority they are. To see this in action, let’s compare a file that both mods have: ui/models/mannequin/0501.igb. If the 36 RH is listed above the OCP 2.3 (36 RH with a priority of 0, OCP 2.3 with a priority of 1), then this file will come from the OCP 2.3. If it’s the other way around, with the 36 RH having a priority of 1, and the OCP 2.3 having a priority of 0, the file will come from the 36 RH. You can drag the mods up and down the list to change their priority. Remember to refresh the Data tab every time you do this. For mods to work well, the OCP should always have the lowest priority with a priority of 0. If you're using a roster hack, its priority should always be 1. Character mods have the next-lowest priority, and then boosters, then skins, then misc mods. Custom herostats should then have the highest priority.
And that’s how you use MO2! Now you can add as many mods as you’d like.
There is an alternative way you can install mods that doesn’t require them being in an archived format: you can simple go to your install folder for MO2 (by default, it’s C:\Modding\MO2) and go into the “Mods” folder. Here, you can create a folder for any mods you want to add, and then add the files inside. This is useful for any loose files you want to add, such as skins or your herostat. It’s also incredibly useful if you’re creating or testing a mod that hasn’t been packaged yet.
If you’re using OHS, you can point the program to the folder for your herostat and install it there rather than overwriting the default one.
If you have multiple game exes (such as the MK on MUA content (or in my case, my special version where I test skins), you can hit the dropdown menu next to the name of the game and choose “Edit”. When the dialog pops up, choose to “Add an executable” and fill out the information.
Using OpenHeroSelect (OHS) with MO2
It's fully possible to use OHS with MO2, but there are a few specific things you'll need to do to make it work properly. This tutorial is meant to supplement the OHS instructions from Section 4
of this tutorial. Be sure to read that section for more information about how OHS actually works. Spoiler
First, you'll need to identify the location of your mods folder for MO2. To do this, click the settings icon at the top middle of MO2. In settings, click on the "Paths" tab, and look at the Base Directory.
Open File Explorer and follow the path that's shown in the Base Directory. When you get there, you should find a folder called "Mods" (in addition to various others used by MO2).
Open up the "Mods" folder. Inside it, create a new folder called "Herostats." Inside the "Herostats" folder, create a folder called Data.
Keep this folder open and run OHS. Follow along the procedures as normal, but when it asks you for the path to your installation of Marvel - Ultimate Alliance, don't enter that yet.
Go back to the open File Explorer window from before, and click at the top in the address bar. This will highlight the file path. Right click it and choose "Copy".
Go back to OHS and right click on "C:\". This will paste the file path that you copied from File Explorer.
Now you'll be able to continue along the regular steps of OHS to finish generating your herostat! Any time you change your herostat, send it to this folder. When you get back to MO2, you may need to refresh the mod list to get the new "Herostats" mod to show up. This can be done by clicking the blue refresh button at the top middle of the screen. Be sure to remember to enable the "Herostats" mod in MO2, and make sure that it always has the largest priority number (and is at the bottom of the list of mods).
Installing Skins with MO2
The process for installing skins with MO2 is very simple as well. The information for how to replace and add skins can be found in Section 5
; this section is just about how to install those mods in MO2. Spoiler
When installing skins, you'll want to create a folder in your "mods" folder in a similar way to how you did for your herostat above. In this case, however, you're creating the folder for your skins. You can have one folder per character, or alternatively, you can have all skins within one mod. The folders that you create within this mod folder depend on what you're adding. If you're just replacing skins, you'll want an Actors folder where you put the skins. You can create a "hud" folder for conversation portraits, a "models" folder for any custom power models, etc. If you're adding skins, you can also create "packages\generated\characters" and add the new packages that you create to this folder.