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Character Graphics? - 11/26/2011 9:41:27 PM   
James009


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So, Legends now allows us to have leaders, admirals, ambassadors, scientists, generals, and spies and, best of all, we can have character graphics. By default the game uses the race default graphic, however, I've been wondering if we can't have customized graphics so I did some digging. In the characters file we can assign custom graphics to these leader and, maybe, new leaders can use the custom graphics.

The custom images go into the "\images\units\Characters" folder but the question is where is a good place to find good custom images for these leaders? Also, can the game distinguish between the "class" of the leader (ie. General, Admiral, Leader, ect)? I believe we could easily assign a whole cast of custom characters that would pop up but what about the randomly generated characters? Also, with custom graphics we could have male and female leaders (probably need to just rename them). I think there is HUGE modding potential here.

Anyone know of any good avatar generators that'd fit Distant Worlds's style? Or games with good character customization? Or is there a site with excellent character graphics? I think STO would be a good source for a variety of 3D humanoid characters (or Eve Online) or Star Wars Rebellion (old game) for more cartoony graphics.

< Message edited by James009 -- 11/26/2011 9:57:42 PM >
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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/26/2011 10:11:50 PM   
Igard


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Hey James. Good to see you again.

The custom images go in your Distant Worlds/customization/'YOUR THEME NAME'/characterImages folder. I'm not sure where you got "\images\units\Characters" from, I don't know if that will work.

You can indeed select the class of the character as well as the order in which the characters will appear. We need the mod guide before we can be completely clear how this works. Suffice to say, we have quite a bit of control of it.

For custom images, you can always use Google image search or play some DVDs on your computer and take some screen shots. Star Trek has a massive database of screenshots at trekcore.com.


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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/26/2011 10:28:30 PM   
Nedrear


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Igard he did mean something else I mentioned before and got seconded. He wants to give ONE picture to a WHOLE class of characters as to prevent random characters spawning with the stupid race picture. E.g. one picture for all scientists and one picture for all leaders.

That does not seem to be possible as of yet.

< Message edited by Nedrear -- 11/26/2011 10:29:02 PM >


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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/26/2011 10:40:06 PM   
James009


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Even just having a variety of pictures for the game to pick from would be sufficient. I just HATE having everyone look exactly the same, I can always modify their names to make it work. But like you guys said, the problem will be if we can or cannot change the "class" of the pictures.

Also we have two options for the image location as stated in the race.txt "Characters" file, "' - Picture filename: optional name of image file used to represent this character. Only PNG image files are supported. The filename should include the file type suffix (.png). The image file itself should be placed in the images\units\characters folder (or customization\THEMENAME\characterImages folder). If no image is specified then the appropriate race image will be used".

EDIT: In order not to write over your original game files, I'd suggest placing them into your mod directory.

Haven't tried anything yet, still getting my modded races in, but I can't wait to see what we can do.

< Message edited by James009 -- 11/26/2011 11:36:01 PM >

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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/26/2011 11:13:18 PM   
Igard


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Hey, sorry. Misunderstood the question.

My plan is to create a generic character image for each class, then make up a bunch of random names and point them to the generic image.

Oh yes James, you're quite right. I don't know what the images/units/characters folder would be used for. Either to mod the vanilla game directly, or to store images for use with multiple themes.

< Message edited by Igard -- 11/26/2011 11:16:44 PM >


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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/26/2011 11:45:46 PM   
James009


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So, I've got the character portrait working for a customized specific character (set in the "Character/Humans.txt"). You need to place the image into a CharacterImages folder in your mod (or your main directory, under units). I used a captured portrait I got from my short time playing Eve Online (I'd just fly around capturing portraits for a day like today). The nice thing is that it seems to scale the images and format them nicely. I'm assuming we can remove the backgrounds with an alpha layer and make the back transparent.

Problem I see is the game, by default, still assigns the default racial image to new or random characters and I don't see a way to have it randomly assigned. Then again, the modding documentation isn't out yet so I'm speculating.


Imageshack


Regardless, this is a huge step towards AWESOMENESS in the characters.

< Message edited by James009 -- 11/26/2011 11:50:22 PM >

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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/27/2011 1:58:24 AM   
Igard


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quote:

ORIGINAL: James009

Problem I see is the game, by default, still assigns the default racial image to new or random characters and I don't see a way to have it randomly assigned. Then again, the modding documentation isn't out yet so I'm speculating.




Yes, I agree. like I said above, I'm creating a long list of random names pointing to my generic character image. It's not ideal. I'm going to wait for the modding guide to get further info before I proceed with this.

You're correct about the alpha channel. Having a transparent background will allow the game to show whether the character is in space or on a planet.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/27/2011 5:43:51 AM   
James009


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You doing that with a Star Trek theme or just sci-fi? Looking forward to seeing what you develop :)

Also, I'm having trouble with the "appearance order" (as in when they will appear). It certainly implements the first or starting characters but beyond that I haven't seen them appear. Regardless, I'm enjoying all the options we have for them. It's kinda fun to create your own "cast" and watch them appear in the game and develop. We'll certainly know more with the modding guide.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/27/2011 6:16:46 AM   
Igard


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ehsummrel1 (Ed) and I are working on the Star Trek Picard Era. Ed is a beta tester so he's had a big head start and offered to help, which is obviously going to save me alot of time.

I've haven't tested much so far, but when I dismiss a leader, rather than go onto the next one, it seems to jump 2 ahead, missing one of my pre-made characters out altogether!

Not sure what's going on there. Best wait for the mod guide before we cry, 'Bug'!


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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/27/2011 12:58:46 PM   
Baleur


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I wish the game could randomly assign many things, provided files (with any name) are in the correct folders.. Sigh.
Portraits, flag designs, etc.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/27/2011 4:20:52 PM   
Igard


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Another modders masterlist might be a good idea. Anyone else want to make it this time?

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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/27/2011 8:27:08 PM   
Nedrear


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quote:

ORIGINAL: elliotg
Hi Nedrear

Sorry for the late reply.

The answer to this one is no, you cannot assign a unique image per character role for randomly generated characters.

The way to assign a unique image for a character is via the pre-defined character files. There is no other provision for this.

Thanks
Elliot


Now the riddle is solved. We may put it on our planned modders wishlist I guess.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/27/2011 9:19:40 PM   
lordxorn


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Yes maybe once the release craziness of Legends calms down, we can corner Elliot into giving us more on our list of requests. I think with more support for mods we can help take DW to a whole other level.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/27/2011 10:38:59 PM   
James009


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quote:

ORIGINAL: lordxorn

Yes maybe once the release craziness of Legends calms down, we can corner Elliot into giving us more on our list of requests. I think with more support for mods we can help take DW to a whole other level.

It worked for Civilization IV and Oblivion... no reason it wouldn't work here.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/28/2011 12:47:11 AM   
RViener

 

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I incorrectly posted a question concerning the lack of random charater images under tech issues. I agree that to have the same image for every random character is not optimal. I hope it can be corrected as it is problem visible in every game and quite annoying, not to mention only the human male image is available.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/28/2011 12:56:54 AM   
lordxorn


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quote:

ORIGINAL: RViener

I incorrectly posted a question concerning the lack of random charater images under tech issues. I agree that to have the same image for every random character is not optimal. I hope it can be corrected as it is problem visible in every game and quite annoying, not to mention only the human male image is available.


What would be the optimal solution? Obviously it would take an insane amount of time to have an artist hand draw all different agents for each class for all the different races? I am just wondering would three different agents be the best that would look different enough?

Or a generic picture of graduating naval officers to represent a random Fleet Admiral once all the characters are used up?

I am even hard pressed to find enough characters for Star Wars with enough information and a decent picture to represent such character for my mod.



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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/28/2011 1:10:27 AM   
Nedrear


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quote:

ORIGINAL: lordxorn

Or a generic picture of graduating naval officers to represent a random Fleet Admiral once all the characters are used up?


Your problem is Star Wars. Many races have only one portrait so you would need to work with one facial graphic. You might as well vary the BACKGROUND. That would work!

And yes if we could it would be awesome! I like Starship Troopers as source!

Soldier Group



Fleet Admiral Group



I can give single gender options too!


< Message edited by Nedrear -- 11/28/2011 1:14:37 AM >


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RE: Character Graphics? - 11/28/2011 4:38:21 AM   
James009


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Optimally, a "perfect" system would have a random portrait generator giving us unlimited options. This obviously isn't the case.

Personally, I think a good solution would be to code the current portrait generator to randomly select an unused picture that was available in something like "images/character/[race]/[class]" IF there is one available. So, if the player or a modder wants to download or make a portrait pack then the game can pick or use them. The problem, for me, is finding images that fit the game... :P

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RE: Character Graphics? - 12/6/2011 6:24:23 AM   
msnevil

 

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here's a modded cartoon securan ie I really got bored.

Attachment (1)

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RE: Character Graphics? - 12/6/2011 6:29:36 AM   
msnevil

 

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race_18.png ...

Attachment (1)

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RE: Character Graphics? - 1/2/2012 7:17:13 PM   
Sarissofoi


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Hm. I think I can have a idea.
Character pictures look to consist from three elements.
1.backround
2.race picture
3.class icon
So what if you make a race picture only a head(so you get zenox head for exaqmple) and class icon modify into uniform for this head(and keep the class icon too).
So you get say Zenox Admiral in white admiral uniform or Zenox resarcher in lab coat.
Still it will be problem to match uniforms for heads from all races.


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RE: Character Graphics? - 1/3/2012 12:10:08 AM   
Kalthaniell


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Sarissofoi

Hm. I think I can have a idea.
Character pictures look to consist from three elements.
1.backround
2.race picture
3.class icon
So what if you make a race picture only a head(so you get zenox head for exaqmple) and class icon modify into uniform for this head(and keep the class icon too).
So you get say Zenox Admiral in white admiral uniform or Zenox resarcher in lab coat.
Still it will be problem to match uniforms for heads from all races.



That's a great idea Sarissofoi. But making the heads is a lot of work. Human heads are easy ,but I for one have no idea how to make toads and insects look different other than colour. More antenae maybe... that wouldn't be so hard. Even so, you still need to spend hours on randomizing alien heads.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 1/3/2012 6:35:29 AM   
Nedrear


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The emblem is distributed and shrunk in the lower corner. That is IMPOSSIBLE. You can not use it as a coat. I made new signs like the hermes staff for diplomacy. That is all.
The idea of a matching background for a profession is something I followed up in my Juned mod. Governors got space colonies as background, admirals space battles etc. That is possible, but has to be edited prior and can't be interchanged. Otherwise the background will be the space or the planet type ingame.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 1/17/2012 12:35:20 AM   
shinobu


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Something I've noticed in my current game using custom character graphics is that my custom characters (w/portraits) are sometimes being "skipped" in order. The first numbers in the code line (custom adjusted "human.txt" file in my customization folder) are supposed to indicate order, right?

From the file: "Appearance order: order that this character appears in the game relative to other characters. A value of zero (0) means that the character is present at the start of the game..."

So my Fleet Admiral number 1 shows up, then Fleet Admiral number 3, then number 4. Admiral number 2 seems to have gotten lost.

General number 1 shows up, then General number 4... No Generals 2 & 3. Anyone else using custom character graphics seeing this? Bug? Am I misunderstanding?

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RE: Character Graphics? - 2/2/2012 7:13:33 PM   
chrono280

 

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I was curious if anybody has had any luck getting a more diverse set of character portraits into the game yet?  Thanks!

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RE: Character Graphics? - 2/3/2012 10:29:34 AM   
Nedrear


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You can not. Either you use pre defined characters, which only goes well with a lore mod, or it will laways use the race picture. As of now Elliot does not give us the capabilities to change that.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 2/3/2012 1:42:56 PM   
chrono280

 

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So if your science officer is Mr. Spock or whatever he will show up, otherwise it'll be a default guy.

Do any mods implement this yet? Thanks for the fast reply.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 2/3/2012 7:35:01 PM   
Igard


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Not yet chrono, or at least not to my knowledge. My Picard Era mod will be released sometime soon-ish. I've used some generic images for characters. For example, a generic image for a section 31 agent. It does take alot of work to do this.

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RE: Character Graphics? - 2/3/2012 9:50:40 PM   
chrono280

 

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I understand and thank you!

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RE: Character Graphics? - 2/22/2012 11:17:41 PM   
chrono280

 

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Just brought this up here (http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=2985698) but it might be worth advertising for it in this thread too:

1. Set up character graphics folder as in the above link with images (for humans) from EVE online
2. Use a BATCH script out of the game to rename the images in a different order so admiral7.png becomes admiralX.png where X is a new random number from 1 to max # of admiral images and a it has not yet been used.
3. Use another batch file to generate a new TXT file of names for those images.


In this way you could grab a ton of images from EVE (or where ever) and have them appear randomly as characters in the game. I'm not experienced enough at scripting to get started but if anybody has any other input that'd be cool.

Spore's creature creator could be used to make alien characters but it would be harder and less "accurate".

Am I totally nuts?

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