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Tutor, FrgM: building from exisiting models

 
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Tutor, FrgM: building from exisiting models - 2/13/2009 9:01:27 AM   
spellir74


Posts: 2003
Joined: 6/15/2008
Status: offline
==========
This tutorial attempts to explain the procedure for reworking existing guns and turrets-as-bodies into turrets for existing vehicles.

Credits to Stridor and Mraah.

==========
.Import X (under file menu)

[Note J key moves view; and right click = free move always]

[A_] First I highlight unwanted vertixes (wheels, body etc)... by hitting V key and then drag lasso and point click; control+left click to highlight additional. [FrM works like most windows things.]

(I use mostly FrgM's default interface. Backface seen [Note View Menu panel on screen shot A1 -- get familiar with those])

[A_] then delete with delete key; lastly Menu bar/vertix/'delete orphans'

[B_] next highlight all vertixes: ctrl+A (all vertixes and faces) or lasso (just vertixes)

[B_] hit M key for transform move (can do this multiple ways, typical of programs.); manual move (left click mouse drag)
-or can use pulldown menu at right: eg 'mesh' /'move. (I'm not sure how transform move and mesh move differ--though they do.)

("constrain" X or Y or Z if desired [at right] --dependent on model individual is working on and where he wants it.)

[C_] now save as .ugh

[C_] next, merge in vehicle temporarilly. (file menu)

[C_] move to appropriate position by making X,Y,Z [0.xx or -0,xx] settings and hit invoke button --!!_NOTE your settings (eg "-0.015" Z axis, invoked twice; "0.09" Y axis, invoked once etc)_

[D_] reopen your save (don't save the merge changes you just made! --you're going to redo them without the merge event)

[D_] move model as you just did through using the same X,Y,Z-Invoke settings(s), thus moving your gun/turret to appropriate. Save.

..............
==NOW HERE IS IMPORTANT STUFF==

-----------
~> If original file was turret: [screen shots 'E']

.delete _extra_ 'bones' (eg removed wheels etc, because of all your vertix deleting earlier)-- B key; grab in view screen; delete.

.under Models tab delete _unused_ 'Groups' (wheels etc) and all but one 'Material'.

JUMP TO "6." below (if original file was turret)...

-----------
~> If original file was "body": [screen shots 'E']

.under Models tab, delete _all_ 'Groups' and all but one 'Material'.

.delete all animations under Animation tab. (eg 'animations01')

.Under Skeleton tab delete _all_ 'bones'.

1. [F_] under bones tab, right click on 'skeleton', add new bones, naming as in screen shots F.

(((((((((((
FYI, hardcoded Bone names (must be exact word):

:Frame_bone_tankcommander

:Frame_bone Firingpoint01 {big Gun}
-& 02 {MG}
:Frame_bone Firingpoint01_dir
& 02_dir

:Frame_bone_position01 & _02 & _03

: xxx_turret ? (maybe any file mapped in an xml under [turret=] will rotate --so long as rotation is set in xml.)
when putting actual rotating turrets are on a vehicle (unlike welding guns on HTs as "turrets"), these must be lined up on world center 'Y' axis.
-and damage animation is needed. (recoil animation is always needed but not damage --vehicle animation suffices.)

)))))))))))

2. [G]_ use left view (zoom in a bit with mouse wheel). Manually move all bones, leaving first one alone at dead center. "constraints" X-axis could come in handy now [at right].

3. [H_] assign vertixes by ctrl+A(highlight all) and then right clicking "Frame_bone_gun" [under skeleton tab], choosing 'assign vertixes': move slider right to full Red Weight [1000]; then hit "set".

4. [I_] copy the name of that bone by cliking on name gently and ctrl+C (under skeleton tab).

(your model is still ctrl+A selected)

5. [J_] under models, right click groups; add new. Then paste in [ctrl+V] the exact entire Frame_bone_ name. Now right click it: choose "add selection to group"

-----------
6. to snyc up lighting direction for turret: MENU/Face/Flip normals/ x axis'

(ctrl+A to select entire model, then...)

& under "Material" right click the entry from earlier, choosing "assign material"

& save.

& export to .X using Stridor's settings.

& run through Stridor's fMF.

======================
This .X file's name (outside file name) can be anything. BUT the ArmouredUnit XML must map to that name exactly.

Folder scheme in ArmouredUnits is such that you can map an XML to folders inside folders. For example, I have one folder for the 251 D hull and all their guns inside separate folders in there.

I make a scenario of the new models on Stridor's blank map to test.

If in the process of testing PzC freezes on scenario load, hold esc key for few seconds to leave PzC.

===========
**_Jumbled "character" [ie model] in FM_

Some files --where you will be keeping the animations-- are such that in fragM they are a jumbled messed-up pile, "akimbo" (per Stridor).

To fix:

-you go to the Animations tab and select the animation01 and the model lines up properly.

(-BUT if you touch any bones in the view screen --eg if you have to reposition the gun/turret-- the model re-jumbles! So...)

-Next: File/"Export Pose". Then open that new pose save. Viola!

Now you can edit freely.

-When done, "merge animation" in from orig.

============
More weirdness:

Sometimes --especially wheels-- the animation will be below surface in game.

To fix... open X file/go to animation view and delete the first keys from the top 3 lanes --Then undo that. Then export to .X or save (and export to .X).

-----------
The tutorial _and synchronized images_ in a zip package:


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< Message edited by spellir74 -- 4/12/2009 3:27:22 AM >
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RE: Tutor, FrgM: building from exisiting models - 2/13/2009 9:15:42 AM   
spellir74


Posts: 2003
Joined: 6/15/2008
Status: offline
First master of synced up tutorial images....






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< Message edited by spellir74 -- 2/13/2009 9:36:59 AM >

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RE: Tutor, FrgM: building from exisiting models - 2/13/2009 9:16:38 AM   
spellir74


Posts: 2003
Joined: 6/15/2008
Status: offline
Second master of synced up tutorial images....






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< Message edited by spellir74 -- 2/13/2009 9:37:28 AM >

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RE: Tutor, FrgM: building from exisiting models - 2/13/2009 9:18:38 AM   
spellir74


Posts: 2003
Joined: 6/15/2008
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Stridor's settings (with respect):




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RE: Tutor, FrgM: building from exisiting models - 3/6/2009 9:56:46 AM   
spellir74


Posts: 2003
Joined: 6/15/2008
Status: offline
In FM, animating is surprisingly intuitive.

{You should be saving as fragmotion .UGH file as you go here.}

{To watch animation, click under animation tab the bottom entry (below the little man) --"animation"-- then use the "tape deck" 'transport' controls at bottom.}
____________________
You'll probably want this way for your cap...

.highlite all vertixes of your cap.

.Under skeleton, right click on whatever is the main head bone --the one the head's vertixes are attached to.

-select "assign vertixes to bone".

--in sub window that opens, set weight to '1.000' [all red] --slider full right.

{.done ~ no new groups or new bones needed.}

.select all; 'assign to material' [per Stridor settings].

.export as .X [store _stock/_orig]; run through FM-fixer; and play test.

______________________
To make cap its own group; eg you want to animate it to blow off or something...

.Highlite all vertixes _and faces_ of your cap only.

.Under Groups, right click and create "new"; name "bone_cap".

-right click and "assign selected to group".

.Under skeleton, make new bone (it could be child of a body/head bone); name it "Frame_bone_cap" (name should be same as group name).

(.If cap isn't highlighted anymore, under group right click cap group _only_ and 'select'.)

.(under skeleton) right click your new bone: select "assign vertixes to bone".

-in sub window that opens, set weight to '1.000' [all red] --slider full right.

(-if any vertixes of the cap still belong to previous bones they will be green --ie lesser weight; remove those assignments by right clicking the other bone the green verts belong to and choosing "remove selected from bone".)

.In main view deselect _all_. Grab cap bone and move to where your cap is approximately. (ie 'grab' --left-click-- in main view area.)

.Under animation, double click "animation" (under the little man). That opens animation pane (like video editor's horizontal lanes).

-In your new bone's three lanes create keys in the first column [keyframe 01], by choosing ["create single keyframe"] {I forget} and left clicking in that column.

{Note, 'Undo' works by main menu bar only-- no 'ctrl Z' in animation. You should be saving as you go here.}

.slide transport slider to around 195.

.create 'initial pose' keyframe(s) at column 195 in bone_cap lane(s) as above.

.slide transport slider to around 200.

.go to pulldown 'tools'/'skeleton animation'.

{'Transform' is move; 'rotate' (good for cap/hatch/gun damage); 'kinemetrics' will move neighbor bones a little; 'scale'.}

.grab cap's bone ('Frame_bone_cap'), in main view.

-move cap's bone a little (cap will move too). Move slider one or two clicks (to eg 202) then move the cap bone a little more.

-repeat until satisfied.

('vertix animation' will allow you to change cap's shape as it blows, I think.)

.go back to animation pane. Highlight final keyframe of cap's lane (this is last position of cap); copy and paste it in its lane (ani's menu bar Edit only); slide that new key to the end [column '301'].

.Done.

.select all; 'assign to material' [per Stridor settings].

.export as .X unique [ie store _stock/_orig]; run through FM-fixer; and test.

===========================
If you move any geometry now, you may have to do some animation keyframes again.

_______________________
=======================
...If above doesn't work-- eg I left out a crucial step (I did it from memory), Fragmotion's animation tutorial at FM HELP site is surprisingly concise and good [for a tutorial]. (_Note though that old FM verison works with on-line help site; newest version works with new downloaded help._)

=========
==================
_Animation:

wheels rotate = 0-40

Recoil = 120-135 _body_ only?

hatch = 190-210


< Message edited by spellir74 -- 4/12/2009 3:33:39 AM >

(in reply to spellir74)
Post #: 5
RE: Tutor, FrgM: building from exisiting models - 3/6/2009 9:57:37 AM   
spellir74


Posts: 2003
Joined: 6/15/2008
Status: offline
working with textures = save one always. copy and paste its pieces to go backwards: edit with confidence.

_make save of model.x file first._

(_Remember to map all files [eg wheels!] to new texture name too._)

----------

_To use extant inf texture_

Hilite your untextured faces (if faces are own group, then select that group)

.menu bar/texture/"map UV coords"

-your faces will be seen in view

.go to right area and select the material the inf is already using. [eg "Russian rifleman___; Russian elite___"]

(The right area has commands...)

.select vertixes, move, rotate or scale your faces to where you want them on that texture.

.close that view

.save UGH now.

.tools/texture/"3D paint"

.draw some X's and lines right on your cap's faces, showing relevant vertixes and outline angles.

.menu/ file/'save texture'/ as unique 'bmp'.

.Leave FM --don't save.

.Open that texture [in "paint.net" (google paint.net --get the indispensable smudge tool while there.)]

.Edit in paint.net to create your Pilotka.
-I would copy and paste net images of them right onto bmp texture as basis for artistic elaboration [using smudge tool ;-P, blur, clone stamp etc]. Drag scale them to place where you made white x's and lines.

.save as .DDS --"dx1, with Mips"; name as stock. (It should be same file size as stock texture when done)

----
>open ugh file in FM again

.Export .X using Stridor settings. [see his jpeg under my 'tutor']

.Run through fMF.

(.run through DirectX Mesh Viewer-- "compressed binary".)

TEST.

=================
_To make brand new texture for cap_

Hightlight faces (if faces are own group, then select that group)

.menu bar/Texture /Unwrap UV coords:
-'Get faces'
-'create material'
-'done'

.Model tab/Textures/"UnwrapImage"
-right click
-"open texture" [Browse and choose texture you created (.dds --dx1, w/MIPs]

.name and path-fix for Texture =

-under properties: change the name of the path to _JUST THE FILE NAME and dot type_ (eg 'inf cap.dds') -- not the whole
"[C:/Matrix games/PzC:K/Data/etc...]" path; change texture name too to that name (but without the dot type).

.Name material as texture name.

-under material, make sure you set your fM material settings correctly:
.....
Diffuse 0xFF FF FF FF
Ambient 0xFF FF FF FF
Specular 0xFF 00 00 00
Emissive 0xFF 00 00 00
Shininess 1
Transparency 0%
......

.Next select your mesh then right click the material you made and "assign to selected".

------
.hilight cap
.menu/texture/map UV coords
-adjust faces to your texture.

(maybe do some tools/texture/3d Painting on your cap here; save and edit in paint.net as above if desired.)

--------
.save ugh

.Export .X using Stridor settings. [see his jpeg under my 'tutor']

.Run through fMF.

(.run through DirectX Mesh Viewer-- "compressed binary".)

TEST.

----------
You can have more than one material per model. Remember keep all textures at a power of 2. It may not benefit you to have
separate textures in terms of video memory. The infantry models already use use 3? different textures.

------------
[some credits to Stridor]

========

FM site has some tutorials.

< Message edited by spellir74 -- 4/12/2009 6:51:32 AM >

(in reply to spellir74)
Post #: 6
RE: Tutor, FrgM: building from exisiting models - 3/6/2009 10:05:19 AM   
spellir74


Posts: 2003
Joined: 6/15/2008
Status: offline
Editing entire color is a good place to start --if you want exposure to image editing.

.Use stock XML as XML basis.

.Copy and paste a 'stock'/or 'orig(user)' folder; name it ['unique', eg 'Russ M3 LendLease'].

.Go into folder and open the 'body' dds in paint.net

{Paint.net is my favorite since it does .dds intuitively. Get the smudge tool add-on at the site. While a little more cumbersome than PS's smudge tool, it practically makes P.n a one-stop prgm.}

{Also, I use 'dds thumbnail viewer' so I can see the dds's image in XP preview-square at bottom left.}

Keep saving your work as uniques as you futz, naming eg '___1', '__2', '___3'; save your starting point too.

.hilite the entire image --ctrl A.

.menu bar/"adjustments"

-"hue/saturation" is an alright place to start.
-Or try 'levels' /'R,G,B' toward bottom.

I would go tannish /drabby. (eg red and green up, blue down.)

.....
Deluxe way is open stock dds and meticulously select with the outline tool, floor boards, tires and wood etc --things you don't want color changed; Outline tool has 'add- or subtract- to selected' option at top left. Then you cut that [ctrl+x], grab what remains [ctrl A] and delete it all and then paste [_ctrl+shft+V_] your cut tires etc back in, "layers/merge down", and then save as eg "Russ HT, tires and wood" [paint.net file].

Now you can make grand color edits and simply copy[ctrl C] and paste[ctrl V] those wood & tire pieces --unchanged-- back in; the last step is "Layers/merge down" [ctrl + M].

......
.Save as DDS (dx1 w/MIPs); should be same size as starting point: eg 1024=683kb or 512=171kb.

.when satisfied, name final version of .dds exactly as it was originally (for other files in that folder might call it).

.open your XML and map, at bottom, exactly to the new folder and files.


< Message edited by spellir74 -- 3/6/2009 10:14:28 AM >

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Post #: 7
RE: Tutor, FrgM: building from exisiting models - 4/12/2009 3:32:34 AM   
spellir74


Posts: 2003
Joined: 6/15/2008
Status: offline
===============

~>_If you 'create face', by creating and then touching vertixes (rather than using 'create -box', '-cylnder' etc you need to use "UV mapper"...)_

.hilite face(s)

.faces/"assign to smoothing group"/[name]

-----------------
-or-

.hilite face(s)

~Model tab at right :

right click 'Group' -
"new"
right click that -
"Add selection"

right click 'Smoothing Group' -
"new"
right click that -
"Add selection"

right click texture -
"new"
right click that -
"open texture" (browse for path [_change path to just file name and type (dds)_])
"create material using texture")

----------------
[stridor material-light settings (00FFFF... and shininess ='1')]

.right click material -
"assign to selection"

~Menu Bar/TEXTURE :

.UV mapper
(-pull down at bottom left - "texture name"; menu bar at top/ 'view' to adjust zoom)
-Mapping - "Planar / best match"
-must adjust size BUT don't move out of tile it is in...
"select UV -coords" or -"triangles" (buttons along strip at top); left click and grap corners)

.Unwrap Uv coords
(unwrap; along 'Y' plane)
-get faces
-assign UV
-Done

.map UV coords
(-"Materials" at right -- choose "[texture name]"; uncheck "allow tiling")
-move /scale /rotate at will

(in reply to spellir74)
Post #: 8
RE: Tutor, FrgM: building from exisiting models - 7/8/2009 3:04:44 PM   
spellir74


Posts: 2003
Joined: 6/15/2008
Status: offline
__Bone de Flip!_

Stock .x files once opened show inverted and mirrored bones (and therefor inside out polygons) sometimes.

~Bone de Flip (FragMotion):

.Menu/transform/transform options: Bones[pulldown], 'Z' check box.

.tools panel/bones, rotate z 180, y, 180.

.Move frame_world property to all 0s. (tools/properties of bone)

.Delete frameworld's animation keys. (Only first three in should be there.)

.menu/faces/vertixes/flip vertixes normals- x axis.

________________________
========================

Smoothing Groups How-to.

First add all faces to a smoothing group. Call it 'all'. That creates rounded edges everywhere.

Then I start adding entire planes that have hard edges to their own smoothing groups.

Put all the faces that make up a plane (ie a side or top of vehicle) in a smoothing group. Call it sides or top etc.

(Then select that smoothing group; update vertixes.)

Then when all the planes are done, "face- flip vertix normals- x axis". That makes the sides dark.




----------
Next time when I replace a face [tools-create-face (click 3 vertixes)], I will try 'tools-INFO-face-edit'. The 'NX' box(in that edit dialogue) apparently should be set to 0.0000 like the other extant faces that are in the stock vehicles.

=============
Normals...

Right now I do them by eyeballing one piece at a time. I use existing normal colors (from other normals) and build a new normal painstakingly one object [eg wheels, edge or viewport] at a time eyeballing the objects placement.

----------
Here is a link to the Nvidia developer zone.
http://developer.nvidia.com/page/home.html

This is the link to the Photoshop plugins / tools:
http://developer.nvidia.com/object/photoshop_dds_plugins.html

Very practical. I use them too.

And more:
http://developer.nvidia.com/object/melody_home.html
http://developer.nvidia.com/object/IO_TTVol_01.html
http://developer.nvidia.com/object/windows_texture_viewer.html


(Marc v. Martial
Director of Art & Production)

____________________
*******************
(PhotoShop export to .dds)

PzC:
.DxT1 (1 alpha ch) = 4bit
-512 = 171 Kb ['resize']
-1024 = 683 Kb ['resize']
.W/ MIPS

============
Paint.NET

EFFECTS:

.Blur -gausian
-unfocus
.Reduce Noise

~For Winter--

.Photo-Glow

&/or

.contrast and brightness up.

--Then bring in bits [eg boxes or MGs] from un modified version of texture, through lasso select [Mode: add/ subtract/invert], copy then paste.

----
ADJUSTMENTS (>!!!!!!!!!!)

.Level

red and green "up" make yellow.

Add purple (red and blue) for brown.

Add grey to yellow to make TAN; use "Desaturate" to grey. (under Hue/Desaturate)


===========
+++++++++++++++++++

_Texture and Heaviness schema:_

>German~

~Factory =tan was default color (except very early and very late?)

~Paint scheme-

-Early war =Pz Grey (Bluish)

-Later war =Camo...
.1 blotches
.2 branch shadows
.3 'ambush' (triangle abstract)

{(Stock game starts this, except for Camo 2&3)}

..............
Summer edges are light = scuffing

Winter edges are darker = white wash scuffed off

{(Stock game reverses this concept except on PIII!)}

===========
Lighter vehicle sit higher on ground; Heavy vehicle sit in deeper. Occasional exception for very wide tracked.

{(Stock game ignores this. And you probably should too.)}



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