BSL:BFW Scripting Language

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BungieFrameWork Scripting Language (simply called BSL) is what Oni scripts are written in. Being a scripting language, it is far more limited in scope and usage than a "real" programming language, as it was designed only to move events forward in the game, not to build programs. More specifically, BSL scripts are responsible for managing the player's objectives, directing AIs, creating environmental effects, and driving cutscenes.

Physically speaking, they are the .bsl files inside the Oni/GameDataFolder/IGMD/ folder. Being in plain-text, scripts can be edited with any word-processing program, such as the built-in Notepad (Windows) or TextEdit (Mac); the only requirement is that you must use the suffix ".bsl" for scripts instead of ".txt" (in Windows, you may have to turn on the displaying of file extensions to see the suffix).

Getting started

  • You may wish to first read either the "Introduction" or the "Manual" page under "Knowledge database" below. The full Manual page also documents known bugs in BSL, and fixes/workarounds when available.
  • To learn BSL by example, you can read the .bsl files in Oni's IGMD folder or look at the "Scripted mods" section below, and draw connections between the scripting commands and the resulting events in the game.
  • For a primer in writing BSL, see the "Tutorials" section below.

Scripted mods

Scripted mods are great examples of what can be achieved simply by editing text files. They replace or add to Oni's .bsl files to spice up the gameplay and provide a more exciting experience to those who have finished the game. However, they can only change the way that game data is used; adding new characters or changing the layout of a level, for instance, would require editing the actual game data. When new levels are created for Oni, these naturally require new scripts to be written from scratch to take advantage of the new game assets.

One ambitious example of a scripted mod is Oni Team Arena. Based on the desire for a multiplayer mode in Oni, and inspired by Unreal Tournament, OTA augments Oni's hand-to-hand combat and gunplay with a scoring system much like Unreal Tournament's Deathmatch mode. Other scripted mods range from free-for-all arenas to objective-based missions and enhancements of the original levels. Scripted mods can be found here, here and here. New levels, with their own BSL files, can be found here (mod packages found on the Mod Depot are meant to be installed through the AE).


Playing with the developer console
The fastest way to start learning BSL is to just load the first level and open the dev console.
Original logic modification
There are lots of cool things to do by merely looking at the original scripts and changing a few parameters.
Want to script a "patch" that's effective in every level?
New logic from scratch
Create completely new level logic from scratch.

Knowledge database