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Panzertruppen's building mod...almost done

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A lot of people have been asking me about the progress of my building mod. Well, it's not finished yet. The "rural" buildings are nearly complete, but the "city" buildings will have to be released later. </p>

For those who have not seen the screenshots at the <a href="http://www.theblitz.org">Blitzkrieg

Wargaming Club</a>, this is a total conversion of all the Combat Mission

buildings. Every one of these buildings was hand airbrushed from scratch at a minimum

1024x1024 resolution. The screenshots do not do them justice because I had to reduce them to 256 color to keep them within a reasonable size. The screenshots were taken after the textures had been reduced to 256x256 resolution. At this resolution they run fine on my lower end machine (a Pentium II 400 mhz). A higher end machine should run them without a hitch providing you have a decent video card.</p>

Be forewarned though, this mod was originally intended for the grognard who just has to have it perfect. I have no intention of lowering the resolution

further, that would defeat the whole purpose of the mod. I don't think it's going to be a big issue though. Those who are concerned about speed could always resize the textures themselves if they chose to do so.</p>

As far as the release time goes...I hope to have the whole 'rural' building set complete within a next few days. They will not be released until they are finished. A few people have emailed me and asked that I release them one at a time. It's a good idea, but they tend to look somewhat out of place with some of the original buildings still in place. Just like Magua's fine mod, they have a unique look and feel, and I want to wait until they're ready. What I intend to

do is release the 'rural' buildings in the first set. The city textures will come a little later. There will also be a winter set released when I get the time.</p>

I will keep you posted on my progress. Thanks to Magua, Tiger, and Madmatt for

the inspiration to do this mod in the first place. I hope people like it, and I'm looking forward to releasing the first set shortly. Last thing: I need a place to host it. My space is limited at the Blitzkrieg, so if you are interested in hosting this mod - let me know.</p>

<font color=#DF4800">Don Panzertruppen Maddox

CM Deputy Custodian

Blitzkrieg Wargaming Club</font>





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Hmmm, I be thinking I be getting these.

Can I post a link on my website to your download when they are available for my web browsers and members? smile.gif

Thanks in advance.

Visit my website:

Dogs of War http://persweb.direct.ca/johnnocm

Blessed be the Lord my strength who teaches my hands to war and my fingers to fight.

- Private Jackson (The Snipers Prayer from Saving Private Ryan.)

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Maybe eventually we can have all the buildings mods, and CM will either let us pick the bitmap for each building, or will allocate them from a pool...

Same with vehicles, why not...

More work for BTS.

Eventually I hope to see scenarios come with their own mods, to give each scenario the right look and feel.


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I would love the idea of picking what BMP is used on buildings and vehicles. I was told that the texture demands on video cards would greatly slow down the game. However it seems that if the game can handle the texture demands of 20+ different vehicles why would it create problems to say have 10 different vehicles with different textures of the same vehicle types?


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Question: which terrain mods are you using?

Those buildings look good BTW, just subdued enuff.

The grass is part of the "velvet" terrain set, however, I modified the hue to make it somewhat more subdued. It looks much more realistic this way. I think it looked too much like golf course grass before. Most of the other stuff is standard from the MDMP release except for the marsh and rough.

Some of the buildings in the background were from Magua's mod. As I finish each new building I add it in to see how it fits in with the others. This can be one of the greatest challenges of doing a mod like this. I created several buildings which I didn't give screenshots of because I didn't like them. They looked as good as the others, but for some reason they just didn't "feel" right when viewed as a whole. The effect I'm shooting for is similar to the destroyed village at the end of SPR. That's wishful thinking given the limitations of the CM engine, but I'm still pleased with what I've been able to do so far.

I finished one new building last night. I originally didn't realize how many of the small "houses" there were. I got used to looking at Magua's mod. Magua chose not to include a completly different set of textures for each building so some of them are actually repeats. That's why I thought there were only four at first, then I discovered two more, then when I thought I was finished I found two more!

That's actually a good thing though. With each house having a slightly different texture it gives a village a somewhat varied look. It's makes it time consuming though. There are a total of eight "houses," two two story houses, and a church. With three textures each that's a total of 33 textures! As I said before I do each at 1024x1024 to start with - that's a lot of airbrushing. My poor old mouse is getting a workout.


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As far as Grass Mods go, I whipped up a "Muddy Grass' mod yesteday using Richard Tremblatt's original Velvet Grass and just adding brown speckles with my charcoal tool set at 100 brush size.

I always thought that the grass looked too "clean" to be a battlefield. I use Kump's trees and tree bases and the grass looks fine with them.

I may not quite be done with them as I didn't quite do them uniformly. I may go back and redo all them so the tile lines don't show up as bad. They don't now, but if you look hard enough you can see them.

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<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Pillar:

Aren't there 4 different types of two-story buildings? (2 different looks each for heavy and light tall bldg)<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

There's more than two textures for two-story heavy buildings. There's at least 4, I think.

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Aren't there 4 different types of two-story buildings? (2 different looks each for heavy and light tall bldg)

There are two 'light' two story buildings, and four 'heavy' two story buildings. The heavy buildings are what I call the "city" buildings. These are what I plan to release in a second set. It's too bad there are not more versions of the light two story available. This is certainly one of the most common buildings used in the game and it tends to look somewhat repetitive.

Which brings me to yet another challenge of creating building textures. Since there are so few buildings available you have to be really careful about making any building too unique. It might look fine if there were only one of them, but when you have three right near each other it looks totally out of place. There is really no choice but to make all the buildings as generic and plain as possible to avoid this.

Another issue when making building mods is CM's handling of color. Although the engine accepts full 16 bit color BMPs, it does not display them that way in-game. If you get close to objects you can see what I mean. I made some really super detailed building textures to see how the game would look. The textures turned out really well, but when viewed in game it looked like a mess. You can work around that with buildings and vehicles, but it's somewhat of a limitation for sky textures.

I imported some really realistic sky textures that I was sure was going to make CM look 200% better, only to find them greatly reduced in color once displayed in game. That's why you have the pixilated look to all the sky textures. The flat gray "fog" sky ends up looking better than most of the ones with clouds because of this. A while back someone from BTS mentioned they were playing with some HI-RES sky textures, but I have not heard anything since.

Anyway, the rural building set has gone gold. It should be available for download within the next 24 hours. Stay tuned!



[This message has been edited by Panzertruppen (edited 11-14-2000).]

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Have faith.....

PanzerTruppen and I are working through some final details. They are coming and if we can work out one small problem I hope to post them by the end of the day. I prefer the ftp server here not be besieged with file requests during business hours, anyway so it will likely be around 5:00 pm EST today, once we work out one small problem.

Stand by smile.gif

-tom w

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We're still working on the problem folks. It appears that Mac users may have problems with this mod although I am at a loss to understand why. As I said before I don't want this mod released until we are certain it is 100% ready to go.

There also seems to be some possibility that the files may have been partially corrupted in the email or zip process. Don't worry, I have all the mod files on my HD along with the original 1024x1024 BMP's. Perhaps I can release those one of these days as well.

We're working on this problem as we speak. As soon as we figure it out the mod will be ready for download. Thanks.


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