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Wendigo

Creating Models..

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As I have dabbled in 3D-modeling every once in a while I'd like to try to create some vehicles (Aliens-type APC anyone?).

How many polygons per model is recommended? It seems that turrets are modelled separately. Any special things that should be noted. I'll be using blender or rhino3D.

If you could send the model --> collision XML tool to wendigo (at) deimos.fi I'd be grateful.

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Just some quick notes:

Yes, model all objects separately. So model the chassis as its own object. Ditto for the turret, the gun, the wheels (if any), and each gun. By "object" I don't mean mesh. An object can be comprised of any number of submeshes, etc., but they all need to be attached as children to some common parent. You can save that parent out of Blender as a .cob file.

Each mesh must have a single texture across the entire mesh (you can't paint individual faces with their own textures). If you need more than one texture for your vehicle, then use separate meshes for the separate parts with different textures.

As for poly counts, for all of the objects on a vehicle, it's best to keep it < 3,000 if you can. This isn't a hard rule - the final count is up to you. Just remember that the higher the poly count, the more players with low end machines will have trouble using your new designs.

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Wendi, you might even consider creating models along the lines of what Yurch has proposed for some new unit types. This way you can use his game design ideas along with your modeling ideas so you can focus your energy on the look while letting him worry about the game design implications of the new units. Teamwork, dontcha know. smile.gif

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Well, only if you're so inclined.

Modding, I know, is very ego-oriented, and I've certainly had my fair share of egoBattle. Since we really only have one full-version sever up and working, I'm interested in units that everyone can enjoy, even making them slightly underpowered if necessary to avoid disrupting normal play.

If you want to do your own thing, that's okay. No need to let that Clay guy push you around. tongue.gif

I can help with the XML, design critique and - maybe - a tiny bit of animation. The basics of modelling, skinning, and rigging are lost on me, though.

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Yep, I know how it is. "This is MY beautiful design and to hell with gamebalance" smile.gif

Mainly I'm just interested in trying to restart my modeling hobby. As a disclaimer I'm only a novice when it comes to modeling and texturing is yet something I've really to try.

Still, I plan to begin with something like tracked IFV in the spirit of Bradley and CV90XX series CV90

I'm not promising anything but if I get anything done, I'll let you know and I'd be glad to do parts of it together. As I've looked at the files, the XML doesn't look bad but anyhow.

Why is it that the version 2.42 of Blender won't open the COB-files as it says that it doesn't recognize the format.

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You need to import .cob files into blender (file->import).

I learned that yesterday. smile.gif DT is finally the thing that makes me learn 3D modelling. I'm 2h through the tutorial. ;)

On another note: I could run another public DT server for testing purposes (name: creature_zoo) with each and every strange vehicle idea.

I refrained from that for two reasons:

1) we are still so few that another server would lower the chance of teamplay

2) some technical issues ( demo forum )

What do you think about 1) ?

What does Clay think about 2) ? ;)

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The most important one, which is that the user have the same Mod as the server selected, is already in 1.1.3. The others are still unaddressed.

Where is your server located, Poesel? What kind of connection is it on?

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Ok, here are few draft renders for first try.

I'm wondering if you can restrict the turret rotation as it is limited with this model.

IFVFront.jpgIFVFront2.jpg

IFVBack.jpg

Any comments?

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This is a rented server from hetzner.de. Its located in Nuremburg, Germany. The connection is (from the website):

# 1 GBit/s Cable & Wireless

# 1 GBit/s Cogent

# 1 GBit/s DE-CIX

# 1 GBit/s KPN EuroRings

# 2 GBit/s LambdaNet

# 1 GBit/s N-IX

# 1 GBit/s Noris Network

# 1 GBit/s Tiscali

Wendigo, that looks good. The turret and the track needs to be a seperate model, though (IIRC).

Hmm, time to get back to that tutorial!

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I'm having difficulty importing objects with blender 2.42. The command track and apollo (so far) have weird problems.

The 'track is importing as two huge tracks with a giant clipping and unworkable version of the vehicle off in the distance or something. The apollo is doing the same thing with it's tracks, but instead of the distance thing the chassis is rendered in the center, wheels nowhere to be found.

The thor appears to import just fine. The track is thicker than normal, though, and seems to protrude through things.

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Ok, I'm having huge problems with texturing. Shortly: How one gets useable UV map from a object? I've tried Blender and I can't spread the meshes properly however I put the seams. As I look at the texturefiles for the game I just can't imagine how they're made. Projection?

Any good tutorials out here?

Right. It seems that if I import any model from Rhino3D to blender, the UV mapping doesn't work properly. Great.

[ August 12, 2006, 11:45 AM: Message edited by: Wendigo ]

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Originally posted by ClaytoniousRex:

The most important one, which is that the user have the same Mod as the server selected, is already in 1.1.3. The others are still unaddressed.

Will this then disallow the 'client side' mods? Custom textures, sounds, ect (additional particles...).

Sure, you could just replace the ones in /data, but it's a matter of convenience not having to re-do your swear filter, replace the annoying map loop load sound, and re-replace textures every patch.

Then again, I suppose this matter of convenience would be a rather large inconvenience to implement. Nevermind me, thinking aloud.

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Just tried blender..... YEURK... I went from anim8or to 3ds max.. I thought 3ds max was a pig until I tried blender... How did anyone manage to make anything in this. I can't even find the line, extrude or lathe tools. Maybe it would be good to start modelling in Anim8or and then import the 3ds it can outpit into blender. Anim8ors interface is intuitive for anyone like myself who ever did technical drawing. I will point out though that its UVW tools are pretty much non existant. All it can do is UV cylindrical mapping.

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yeah i use formz and sketchup and export....

i'll check out blender and see how useful the osx version is...

currently working on a tank destroyer with a 120mm cannon and severely sloped front glacis plates and very low silouhette.

mainly cause it's the kind of vehicle i would like to use in-game (i like sitting off the attacker's flank and shooting from a mostly static position, at least until i get spotted ;)

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I tried to import the light tank chassis into blender and directly exporting it to .cob again.

After the import the tracks are enormously out of scale with the rest of the body. I ignored that and proceeded to export and test it in DT.

The tank chassis looks ok and in scale but the whole thing is blinking in and out of existence. When 'away' a small white piece of the chassis remains.

Has anyone got his own model into DT yet?

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Okay, I need some help or information about how the "animations" work. Not animations as in the infantry, but for different physobjects.

For instance, we have these tags here in the Thor's file:

</font><blockquote>code:</font><hr /><pre style="font-size:x-small; font-family: monospace;"> <Animation>

<AnimationID>0</AnimationID>

<BaseModelName>MBTChassis</BaseModelName>

<TotalTime>0.6</TotalTime>

<Sound>

<Filename>Tank_Int_Idle_Steady.wav</Filename>

<Time>0.0</Time>

<Priority>50</Priority>

<Looping>true</Looping>

</Sound>

</Animation></pre>

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Those animation tags correspond to the various states the vehicle is in at any one time just as you said, such as idling, driving, etc. They do 2 useful things:

</font>

  • Make the model animate (but as you can see none of the current set of vehicles makes use of this one) - this could be used to make pieces of the vehicle move when driving, for example, or make a little radar attachment spin around, or whatever kind of mesh animation you wanted</font>
  • Make the vehicle emit sound - so you can have a high rev sound for moving and an idling engine sound for the "idle" animation, etc.</font>

The AnimationID specifies which state this animation corresponds to. It's an integer that specified one of these states:

LOITER - 0

MOVE - 1

AIM - 2

SHOOT - 3

DIE - 4

BURN - 5

EXPLODE - 6

MOVE FAST - 7

MOVE SHOOT - 8

MOVE FAST SHOOT - 9

You would generally only want to use the few that see being used in the existing vehicles.

The BaseModelName tag specifies a series of models that are to be used as an animation when in this state. Whatever you specify for this tag, DropTeam will go out and attempt to load that name with a 0.cob after it, then with a 1.cob after it, etc. until it stops finding matches. So, for example, if you had a 30 frame animation of a tank flapping its wings (?), then you might have these model files:

MjolnirChassisFlap0.cob

MjolnirChassisFlap1.cob

MjolnirChassisFlap2.cob

.

.

.

MjolnirChassisFlap29.cob

Then at runtime, those 30 different meshes would be swapped in for the original mesh at the rate specified in your animation's TotalTime tag to make an animation.

I think the problem you're running into is that it's always looking for .cob files for these frames of animation. You have .obj, so it's not working.

So there are only 2 ways to proceed. Either you convert your models to cob (or send them to me and let me try), or you wait for a code fix that makes the loader smart enough to look for .obj if the original model was .obj.

Which do you prefer?

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Pretty much how I thought it worked, okay.

As the Guy Not Doing The Modeling it doesn't quite bother me either way. These models are probably going to go through many more iterations, so I doubt you want to be converting for us all day. I'll try converting myself in the meantime.

It seems the general consensus though is that blender isn't that great. (I've never heard of .cob before playing DT...) I think the second option sounds best if only for more support for alternate formats.

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I think you're right with the .obj anim thing.

Having a time converting the damn things properly, though. Everything's turned 90 degrees, and the chassis is shrunk down to some impossible size...

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