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Thread: Make your own unit cards

  1. #1
    Kallikratis's Avatar Miles
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    Default Make your own unit cards

    This is a tutorial on how to make unit cards of your own troops. It's very easy. Just follow the steps and you shall make magnificent unit cards.

    IMPORTANT
    -This tutorial is for Adobe Photoshop users only!
    -Steps marked with an asterisk (*) require some extra stuff. You can download it in the attachments section.

    OK, here we go: Open 3dsmax and Adobe Photoshop.

    In 3dsmax:

    *Step 1. Make 3dsmax able to open .cas files.
    Open the proper script for importing/exporting RTW units.

    Step 2. Import your custom unit.
    Import the unit you want with it's texture applied on. For those who don't know how to it, hit 'm' and click the 'maps' tab. Next click the first tab and find
    the texture you have made for your unit.

    Step 3. Import the animations.
    Click on 'import animation tab', the tab below 'import item'.

    *Step 4. Find a good stance.
    Now find where RTW animations are located on your PC and open one. You will notice that the unit's default stance has been altered and a ruler below a big
    bar is painted. Drag the bar to find the stance you want for your unit. You may need to move/rotate it's weapons or shield to match exactly with the stance
    you want. You might try several animations to find a good stance for your unit card. It's reasonable, because there are too many animations and many variations
    that can be done by the user.

    Step 5. Say 'cheese'!
    When your model's stance is OK according to your standards hit F9 button. You will get a nice photo of your unit. Save it in a location of your choice in .png format.
    Again, in .png format. It's the best way to select your unit with 100% precission.

    Step 6. One more time.
    Repeat the fourth and fifth step to make another photo. Notice that we need two photos: one for the unit info, the photo which you can see when you read the unit's description
    and one for the unit icon, the photo you can see when you want to train a unit on campaign or add it in a custom battle.

    In Adobe Photoshop:

    *Step 1. Make the unit info card.
    Make an image with dimensions 160x210 pixels. You need to add some grass and then place your image from the fifth step. I've made a picture for you if you don't
    have one. Copy and paste it over your image. Open the .png. We will select our unit using the Magic Wand tool. Set the tolerance about 90-110 and select it. Then,
    copy the layer and paste it over the grass image. Very easy, don't you think?

    Now we have to make only the unit and the grass to be visible by the game. We have to use the Alpha Channels to make this. So, hit the Channels tab, go to the bottom of it
    and activate the Alpha Channel by simply clicking on it. Select the black color next and using the brush or the pencil, hide the areas around your unit carefully. You know what is visible and what is not since
    hidden parts of your image are displayed in red color. I'm sure people who have made a couple of textures will understand what i'm saying.

    When you have done it, make a folder in c:/.../.../Data/ path, the game's path, named 'UI'. Inside, make two more folders named 'UNITS' and 'UNIT_INFO'. You have to create another folder with the name of the faction that your unit
    is belong to and save the image there. You must save it as a .tga format with 32bits per pixel plus the '_info' extension.
    Example: blahblah_info.tga
    If you have been confused by which folder must be created and where see the diagram below:

    Step 2. Make the unit icon.
    Similar to the first step. You have to make an image with dimensions 48x64 pixels. Use the Alpha channels as previously mentioned, and save the image in the 'UNITS' folder with a '#' before the name.
    Example: #blahblah.tga

    Happy unit card making

    Edit: You can find RTW animations here.
    Last edited by Kallikratis; November 04, 2006 at 12:59 PM.

  2. #2
    Halie Satanus's Avatar Emperor of ice cream
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    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    Good tutorial , just one thing though, it's been pointed out to me that a lot of guys making Ui cards are still cutting out their rendered images. There's no need as you can save a Max render as a Tga,

    Before you make the render press 8 to alter the bg colour
    Tip; make the bg colour as close to your intended bg colour for the small cards in game. this will help avoid a ghosting effect around you unit.

    Open the render window.

    Hit render button.

    When the render window comes up you can see the Alpha by clicking on the 1.b/w circle.

    2. Edit.. Not important.

    Save as a targa(tga). Open it in photoshop and you'll see your unit with no bg.

    Should save quite a bit of time.




    Also as a bit of shameless advertising check these, for the ui cards you can have any bg you want.

    http://www.twcenter.net/forums/showp...59&postcount=3
    Last edited by Halie Satanus; July 24, 2007 at 06:56 AM.

  3. #3
    vikrant's Avatar The Messiah of innocence
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    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    great job both of u
    but is it possible to list the units and their animation sets

    like LID,LIJ etc
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  4. #4
    Kallikratis's Avatar Miles
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    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    Quote Originally Posted by vikrant1986
    great job both of u
    but is it possible to list the units and their animation sets

    like LID,LIJ etc
    Well, according to the unit's skeleton we can see what set of animations it uses from animation's suffix (D,J,S). I think D is for fs_dagger skeleton type, J is for fs_javeliman and S is for fs_spearman and so on. But it takes many hours to do this.

    I'd like to ask halie satanus how can we have a render from 3dsmax with the alpha channels from our photoshop texture applied on?

  5. #5
    Halie Satanus's Avatar Emperor of ice cream
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    Default Re: Make your own unit cards


  6. #6

    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    @Halie
    1. click on the 1.b/w circle. - sure no problem - it shows the alpha channel but
    2. after clicking on the white square to set the alpha channel to the same colour as your render bg, it doesn't change anything - i still have the bg colour on the pic in photohsop - when i keep the bg unchanged - black and change the square to balck the bg on the pic is still black (same when i do not change the white square), same when i change both square and bg to red - the pic has the red bg.

    btw why on the second pic the there is a layer 0, not a background?

    @Kallikratis
    I make those smaller unit cards by using finished UI - i crop the most important part of it and resize to 48x64
    and i use bouis template cards (your isn't best esp as you uploaded a jpeg version)

  7. #7

    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    I encounter the same thing. What I did instead is highlighting the alpha channel in PS and then switching back to RGB Values you can get a fairly good cutout, but that doesn't sound exactly like what HS is describing.



  8. #8
    Halie Satanus's Avatar Emperor of ice cream
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    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    Are you guys saving as a Targa (tga). ??. Uranos, maybe solid black is a bad idea, i set mine to a darkish grey.

    Ok this is the msn walkthough i just did with Publius

    Set the bg for the render, press 8.

    Hs. says:
    ok i've set the bg at 69,69,69,0,0,69, rgb ect
    Publius says:
    ok
    Hs. says:
    then open the render window and hit render at the bottom.
    Publius says:
    k
    Hs. says:
    the bg should be grey
    Publius says:
    yup
    Hs. says:
    ok click on the white sqaure and set the rgb ect as the same
    Publius says:
    ok
    Hs. says:
    and save as a targa, tga,
    Hs. says:
    in the pop up window save as 32 bits
    Publius says:
    i dont have to do anything with the alpha?
    Hs. says:
    nope thats it, mine looks perfect.
    Hs. says:
    hmm used dodge to lighten him and no sign of ghosting.
    Publius says:
    cool.



    Sorry for any confusion about hitting the b/w circle, that's not important.
    Last edited by Halie Satanus; November 06, 2006 at 06:24 PM.

  9. #9
    Kallikratis's Avatar Miles
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    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    Many thanks to halie satanus, who provided me the link for this helpful tutorial, to Nero 666 who wrote it and to Uranos who provided the link for those amazing unit templates. I was looking for them everywhere!

  10. #10

    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    Thanks, really helpful tutorial, but I'm lost at the first step. Presumably in 3DSMax I run the script, but I'm still having trouble opening the unit. How do I import the unit into the program? I'm new to this stuff so please bear with me.

  11. #11
    Kallikratis's Avatar Miles
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    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    Below the "run script" tab, there is a drop-down menu. From there, select RTW-Import Export. When done, there will appear three buttons i think. The first displays some info about the script (author, version e.t.c.), the second is for exporting the model and the third is for importing a model.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    Thanks will give this a try

  13. #13

    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    I'm wanting the Roman legionaries to use their swords rather than carry their pilae - how do get this to work?
    Thanks for the help


    OK managed to work this out!!
    Last edited by tone; January 06, 2007 at 11:36 PM.


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  14. #14

    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    One really stupid question: When I imported an animation in 3ds Max, for instance to check whether the weapon lines up neatly with the hands during various animations, how do I get the model back to the initial pose (straight up, hands steched out) for export? Never mind, I figured it out, itīs simple, really: All you need to do is to importy any .cas model, then hit "export animation". Name the exported animation default_stance, or whatever you like. So, whenever you had an animation loaded (to check whether the hands line up with the weapon, or something like that), and you made the changes to the model, just import the default_stance animation again, and your model will be back in position ready for export.
    Last edited by Ciaran S; January 09, 2007 at 12:22 PM.
    Life is a sequence of missed opportunities

  15. #15

    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    I am stuck on step 3.

    Where are these buttons/tabs??

    Quote Originally Posted by Kallikratis View Post
    Below the "run script" tab, there is a drop-down menu. From there, select RTW-Import Export. When done, there will appear three buttons i think. The first displays some info about the script (author, version e.t.c.), the second is for exporting the model and the third is for importing a model.
    Also this is confusing me. Where is the run script tab, and drop down menu?

    Screens would be extremely helpful...
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  16. #16
    Squid's Avatar Opifex
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    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    It should be on the right hand side if you have things in their default locations.
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  17. #17
    Maced0n's Avatar Domesticus
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    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    for making ui cards you only need 3ds max no need for PS2 or Gimp...There is max models in ...\bi\data\ui\unit_info\huns which you can use for making UI cards.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    Ok this is getting riduclous.

    1) I still cannot get rid of the bg, even though I followed both tutorials by Halie TO THE LETTER! There is still a gray background when I open it up on CS2.

    2) I can not import animations either. I get a series of errors:










    This is how I go about:
    1. open autodesk 3ds max 9
    2. run script, to get .cas files
    3. and hers the first but: when i open the material editor using 'm', and click on the maps, then diffuse colour tab, browse from Mtl library, I look into my folder, but there is no texture files there because it only wants max renders, or mat files and some others but no .tgas files. I think i am doin something wrong here...
    4. When i try to open .max files, i double click the one I want from the list, note here the top left sphere dissapears.
    5. Now when i try to import .cas files, it comes up with those error messages. I am assuming this has something to do with importing files.

    Anywho, i am about to give my computrer a good kick in the guts, so help will probably be necessary to save it's life .

    Thanks in advance, and patience, i am new to this stuff.
    Roma Surrectum - Beta Tester and Artist Co-Ordinator
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  19. #19
    Halie Satanus's Avatar Emperor of ice cream
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    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    Re; your grey BG problem, It should work fine so you must be doing something wrong, or perhaps your Cs2 options need to Alpha channels enabled (not very likely but could be a problem)

    3. The Tga's are in your Rome/Data/models_units/textures file, if you have unpacked them. (something like that).

    The rest I'm not to sure on, possibly you are trying to import older version models from RTW?.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Make your own unit cards

    Yeah it was CS2, solved the problem by using GIMP for the unit cards.
    Roma Surrectum - Beta Tester and Artist Co-Ordinator
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