I'd say set yourself an objective, and then set to work on solving it. It gives you a tangible goal to work towards, and you're focusing on a specific set of steps rather than trying to wrap your mind around a whole host of abstract concepts at the same time. You'll figure things out as you go, and this way you're more likely to remember what you've learned because you've applied it in a practical way.
As an example, my first foray into UnrealScript was a desire to modify the number of points awarded for capturing a flag in BunnyTrack. I created a mutator, and then explored the UnrealScript for SmartCTF to see how that achieves the same thing. I modified the relevant section of UnrealScript to suit my needs, and then had my own stand-alone mutator to award whatever point values I liked.
Don't go for anything really ambitious to begin with. Pick something straightforward - like changing the height that a player can jump, or adding a mutate command to reverse the names of players in the server or something.
Things to keep in mind:
- The folder for storing the files for your mutator must reside under the Unreal Tournament directory, e.g., if UT is installed at "c:\games\unrealtournament", and your mutator is called MyFirstMutator, you'd create...
...and then inside of the MyFirstMutator folder, create a sub-folder called "Classes" - where you put your files
- To compile your mutator, you have to add an entry in your UnrealTournament.ini file. Search for the "EditPackages" section, and add a new entry to this list (the end of the list is a logical place). The name of the entry must match the name of your mutator folder:
To create the compiled file, you'd open a Command Prompt, change to the UT system folder, and issue the "ucc make" command
- The resulting file will be placed into the System folder. Once created, you *must* delete it before you can compile another copy. If you don't delete any existing copy, the compiler won't generate a new version (causing much confusion when you can't understand why the changes you just made aren't working!)
- To use the mutator, best to make a batch file (just use Notepad, and then make sure when you save the file, you put ".bat" at the end, so that Notepad doesn't save it as a txt file), something like:
ucc server CTF-Coret?game=Botpack.CTFGame?mutator=MyFirstMutator.MyFirstMutator?MaxPlayers=10 ini=UnrealTournament.ini %1 %2 %3 %4 %5 %6 %7 %8 %9 -log=server.log
...then just double-click this to start a server. Run UT, and connect to this server for testing