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Thread: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

  1. #1

    Default How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    I've done some tinkering with 3DS Max, mostly I can delete things or switch primaryactive/secondaryactive. But what I've never been able to do is take an element from one finished unit and transfer it to another. Ie basic assembly. Every time I've tried, I get Bartix units with broken limbs and such.

    Are there any tutorials focused on just this limited task I could be pointed to?

    I've got two finished units, I want to remove one set of weapons from one (I can do that part) and replace it with a different set of weapons from another model. How is it done?
    It began on seven hills - a historical house-ruled Romani AAR
    Heirs to Lysimachos - a semi-historical Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR
    Philetairos' Gift - a second attempt at an Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  2. #2

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    Don't have access to 3ds Max at the time, but this can be done via the scene import function if I am remembering correctly:
    1. Instead of exporting your finished unit as a mesh file, save it as a 3ds Max scene.
    2. Start a new file/scene and import the unit that you want to give the parts to.
    3. Import the scene from step 1 via 3ds Max's native function. You will notice that you can select what you can import, from bones to mesh pieces, select what you need and hit import.
    4. Assign UV/texture reference/skin weight/comments as needed. You are basically done at this point, and can export the finished unit and save the scene.

    Please let me know how it goes.
    Last edited by Medusa0; June 13, 2018 at 06:02 PM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    OK, I've gotten as far as step 3; no idea how to do any of the things in step 4, or if I need to if they were already done on the scene I took the weapon from (but I know the attachment textures are probably wrong)?
    It began on seven hills - a historical house-ruled Romani AAR
    Heirs to Lysimachos - a semi-historical Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR
    Philetairos' Gift - a second attempt at an Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  4. #4

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    I am going to be using a lot of external links since it's probably not a good idea to be explaining everything from memory, so bear with me here:

    With 3ds Max, skinning and assigning UV coordinates are done via "Modifiers", you can add them via one of the drop-down menus from the top toolbar, or from the mesh selection on the right side of the screen. 3ds Max is unique in Autodesk software in that it utilises modifiers in editable "stacks", where the highest modifier in the stack takes precedence over the others. (Official explanation here on modifiers here: https://knowledge.autodesk.com/suppo...16E9C-htm.html )

    To work with the imported weapons, first delete/collapse the modifier stack on them (right click, collapse all) as they pertain to their original scene, and we will be giving them a whole new set. I will be asking you to collapse modifiers often as this works to apply most of their properties to the object (except for Skin and Edit Normals, which you can see on imported mesh parts).

    Second, hit M to open the Material Editor to get started (official page here). Once you have assigned the appropriate files to each materials, you should be able to see the textured model in the 3d view. Assign the attachment material of the receiving unit to the imported weapons.

    Use the Unwrap UVW modifier (skip to step 4 in this tutorial) to move, resize, and modify where the part is on the texture. You will find that attachment textures seem to be outside of the texture boundaries (to the right side of the viewable area), for now map the coordinates to the appropriate area within the texture boundaries, and then close the Edit UVWs window. Collapse the Unwrap UVW modifier. Now add a UVW XForm Modifier to the stack, and set U Offset to 1.0, collapse this modifier too. At this point you can add the Unwrap UVW Modifier again if you would like, the UVW coordinates will be at the correct place to the right of the texture boundaries. This strange texture offset is normal for M2TW due to how the engine handles extra textures, if not done, you will have the attachments using the unit's texture too in battle regardless of what you have assigned to them in the BMDB.

    Skin weighing to weapons is fortunately a lot simpler (tutorial here). For weapons with a single part, select the weapon, add modifier, and assign a single bone to it (bone_weapon01 for right-handed weapons, bone_lelbow for shields, etc.). For weapons with multiple parts (blades with scabbards), assign one bone first, add a bone, and then paint its weight (1.0) to the secondary parts.

    Before exporting your mesh, make sure the Skin modifier in above the Unwrap UVW modifier.

    I missed having access to an actual PC with proper software...
    Last edited by Medusa0; June 13, 2018 at 07:45 PM.

  5. #5
    paleologos's Avatar Moderator
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    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    @ Medusa0:
    I find milkshape much easier to use than 3dsmax, so I am not in any hurry to read the above soon.
    I none the less find it commendable that you took the time to type in the explanation, +rep!

  6. #6

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    Appreciate the help, but most of this is just going way over my head. I'm a coder, not an artist, and I've got 3DS Max 2014 which doesn't seem to do some of these things the same way. I'm looking at the UI and just seeing a bewildering array of options, none of which I really understand.

    Should I be trying to do this in Milkshape instead, if all the parts I'm using are already made?
    It began on seven hills - a historical house-ruled Romani AAR
    Heirs to Lysimachos - a semi-historical Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR
    Philetairos' Gift - a second attempt at an Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  7. #7
    paleologos's Avatar Moderator
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    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    Well, if you are primarily a coder and you are not interested in immersing yourself in 3D modelling for good, then you are troubling yourself more than you have to with 3DSmax.
    I very strongly do recommend to do the thing in milkshape.
    Not to mention, there are plenty of tutorials about milkshape-for-M2TW in the Skins, Models, and Animations subforum.

  8. #8

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    Quote Originally Posted by QuintusSertorius View Post
    Appreciate the help, but most of this is just going way over my head. I'm a coder, not an artist
    Codding is a art in it's own right, so you are a artist. After all, anyone who think that codding m2tw is a science, (or any other of the few games I did some modding on) is dead wrong. It's a art.

  9. #9

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    Quote Originally Posted by paleologos View Post
    Well, if you are primarily a coder and you are not interested in immersing yourself in 3D modelling for good, then you are troubling yourself more than you have to with 3DSmax.
    I very strongly do recommend to do the thing in milkshape.
    Not to mention, there are plenty of tutorials about milkshape-for-M2TW in the Skins, Models, and Animations subforum.
    Indeed, I've found one on the front page which covers what I'm trying to do. I can jump straight to page 5 of the PDF version of it, and get to work with Milkshape, since I already have my meshes and know how to integrate the finished result.

    Let's see how this goes...

    Quote Originally Posted by selv View Post
    Codding is a art in it's own right, so you are a artist. After all, anyone who think that codding m2tw is a science, (or any other of the few games I did some modding on) is dead wrong. It's a art.
    It's a logical kind of art, not a creative one. When I'm writing code, I aim for efficiency, using as little code as possible and making sure everything ties off neatly. Modelling is a different discipline entirely, one I respect, but isn't in my wheelhouse of skills to replicate what they do. I might just be able to manage a bit of jury-rigging, though, by cutting and pasting finished elements, which is what I hope to do here. That'll spare the real artists silly little tasks like this one.
    Last edited by QuintusSertorius; June 14, 2018 at 08:41 AM.
    It began on seven hills - a historical house-ruled Romani AAR
    Heirs to Lysimachos - a semi-historical Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR
    Philetairos' Gift - a second attempt at an Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  10. #10

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    OK, so I have the new weapon in the model (I've swapped a javelin for a spear), resolved some issues that prevented it converting back to a mesh, but assigning the diffuse textures (in .tga format) doesn't seem to work properly. I choose the files, but nothing happens in the bottom right box:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    However, when I look at the Texture Co-Ordinator Editor, the textures are there, they're mapping to the wrong place (obviously) but I can't seem to change it:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    When I convert the .ms3d into a .mesh and put into the game, their primary weapon isn't there (all the other textures seem to be working fine).
    Last edited by QuintusSertorius; June 14, 2018 at 06:29 PM.
    It began on seven hills - a historical house-ruled Romani AAR
    Heirs to Lysimachos - a semi-historical Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR
    Philetairos' Gift - a second attempt at an Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  11. #11

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    OK, a little bit of progress on the texture front. For one of the spears, I've managed to move the outlines to the right place (had to re-scale the shaft, hopefully that won't have messed everything up):

    Click image for larger version. 

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    But for the other, it's done as one piece which is of no use here:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Should I just abandon the second variation?
    It began on seven hills - a historical house-ruled Romani AAR
    Heirs to Lysimachos - a semi-historical Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR
    Philetairos' Gift - a second attempt at an Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  12. #12

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    It should be possible to separate them by selecting only the verts or faces from either the shaft or head, but for absolute easiest mode, you could duplicate the first one, and try to do a bit of model scaling on the head to make it a variant, like making it a bit broader by upscaling the X 1.1x. Or just abandon it and only have the one spear, it's not something that will look too wrong if they're all matching, as long as the rest of the model has nice variation.

  13. #13

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    Here's my mesh, I can't assign the Attachment texture to the spear without messing up all the other Materials.

    celtiberian_elite_lod0.converted.zip

    No texture means invisible weapon, and every other attempt I've made has either ruined the textures or the model, so no idea what to do now.
    It began on seven hills - a historical house-ruled Romani AAR
    Heirs to Lysimachos - a semi-historical Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR
    Philetairos' Gift - a second attempt at an Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  14. #14

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    It looks like the spear is already assigned to Attachments when I open it. When you go to reassign textures, make sure to deselect everything, then select only the one part you want to reassign.

  15. #15

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    Quote Originally Posted by WhiffOfGrapeshot View Post
    It looks like the spear is already assigned to Attachments when I open it. When you go to reassign textures, make sure to deselect everything, then select only the one part you want to reassign.
    Weird, it wasn't like that when I quit Milkshape.

    Doesn't work, though, none of the other textures are messed up, but there's no spear there. Could it be a problem with the converter? The texture doesn't seem to be sticking.
    It began on seven hills - a historical house-ruled Romani AAR
    Heirs to Lysimachos - a semi-historical Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR
    Philetairos' Gift - a second attempt at an Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  16. #16

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    It's possible. Can you put the mesh and textures in a folder and attach them?

  17. #17

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    Quote Originally Posted by WhiffOfGrapeshot View Post
    It's possible. Can you put the mesh and textures in a folder and attach them?
    The zip is 9MB and it's refusing to attach...
    It began on seven hills - a historical house-ruled Romani AAR
    Heirs to Lysimachos - a semi-historical Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR
    Philetairos' Gift - a second attempt at an Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  18. #18

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    Here it is externally hosted.
    It began on seven hills - a historical house-ruled Romani AAR
    Heirs to Lysimachos - a semi-historical Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR
    Philetairos' Gift - a second attempt at an Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  19. #19

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    Hmm, looks fine to me in Milkshape. I just looked through the comments, didn't see anything odd. I selected the spear and set it to attachments, even though it already was, and saved it. Maybe it'll work in game for you.
    https://ufile.io/vidcg

  20. #20

    Default Re: How do I take a weapon from one unit and give it to another?

    Quote Originally Posted by WhiffOfGrapeshot View Post
    Hmm, looks fine to me in Milkshape. I just looked through the comments, didn't see anything odd. I selected the spear and set it to attachments, even though it already was, and saved it. Maybe it'll work in game for you.
    https://ufile.io/vidcg
    Thanks for giving it a go; I tried your mesh and the same result - invisible spear. Does that mean there's a problem with the model itself? Or the converter?

    The only time I've been able to get the spear to appear was after I imported the mesh into 3DS Max and used that to save the mesh, but that messed up all the rigging in the process.
    It began on seven hills - a historical house-ruled Romani AAR
    Heirs to Lysimachos - a semi-historical Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR
    Philetairos' Gift - a second attempt at an Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


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