3d Game Studio A7 supports these formats

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3d Game Studio A7 supports these formats // Game Development

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Post by tamtam // Jan 22, 2009, 5:22pm

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Hi, it's been a while since i've been here, and for one of my holiday presents in December, I got 3d Game Studio A7 Commercial Edition! Yay... but then again, I have a lot to learn considering I have only used Dark Basic Pro so far. I think 3d Game Studio uses something similar to the C programming language.


I looked up (searched) 3d Game Studio here at the Ts forums, and found that people are trying different methods of converting their models from a format in Ts to some format like .dae, or .obj, or something like that.


I found the following on the specifications part of the site of 3d Game Studio:


"Supported file formats: FBX, 3DS, X, OBJ, ASE, MAP, MDL, MD2, FX, BMP, PCX, TGA, JPG, DDS, WAD, MID, WAV, OGG, MP3, MPG, AVI. More formats through 3rd party import filters."


My question is, why are people trying to convert their models to other formats when 3d Game Studio probably already supports the formats in Ts?


I got some deal for my holiday present a couple of years ago when I got Ts 7.5, and I might have gotten the Game Pak too, when it was still around.


I'm not sure if the Game Pak was the product that gave me the .x format in the Ts model side, or if Ts already had that.


Thanks for your kind help

- tamtam

Post by nowherebrain // Jan 22, 2009, 10:04pm

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usually due to feature support, # of skin sets, UV mapping, and animation(bones or vertex).

Honestly your best bet is the .obj format atm, but no animation there...if we ever get .fbx we will have support for anim...the other alternative is .3ds I think you can import frames into MED for .3ds, but I am not sure if you can export them from tS.....anyone out there know?

BTW: let me know if you have any questions regarding lite-c, or 3dgs in general...I will probably be able to help.

Post by Tiles // Jan 22, 2009, 11:39pm

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X has more than one problem. It is more a bundle of derivates than a real file format. And it blows up the mesh because it calculates own vertices for every face.


Importing X from Workspace into MED works partially. Animation arrives fine. It looses the texture in all cases though. MED is in trouble with the new X specification that comes from tS. MED cannot read the DeclData block that contains the texture informations.


Importing OBJ into MED works for static stuff. But also here you need to fix the textures more than once.


Best working pipeline for me so far: Collada output from tS, then i load it into Ultimate Unwrap 3D, save it as FBX, import the FBX into MED, then save as MDL. You need Ultimate Unwrap for that though. But the money is well spent in my opinion :)

Post by nowherebrain // Jan 22, 2009, 11:49pm

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These are the reasons I use blender and ventilators(3dgs forums) mdl7 exporter.

Post by nigec // Jan 23, 2009, 12:05am

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The last time i used 3DGS (version 6) most of the character modellers used MilkShape

With most game engines you need to bounce the models from TS into something else to get it to work

A wise investment would be to learn Blender (which i should do really!) everyone I know who uses it has a lot less hassle exporting to engines

Post by Tiles // Jan 23, 2009, 12:58am

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But gives you the hassle of the only software without a human interface. Blender is the proof that aliens exists :p

Post by Jack Edwards // Jan 23, 2009, 1:08am

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Sorry guys about taking so long on the FBX exporter. :o

Took a break from 3D for a while, and now with the announcement of VRay for TS being discontinued, I figured Yafaray export/support should take priority. I think we should have a functional version of the Yafaray exporter for people to work with fairly soon.

So hopefully I'll have some time in February to make some more progress on the FBX exporter. Geometry export isn't that difficult, and I solved the scene traversal code working on the Yafaray exporter. Importing/Exporting FBX Animation on the otherhand may take some time. So unless someone else beats me to it, I'll likely release the FBX plugin with geometry and material support only first. Then do a later release with animation support.

Post by nowherebrain // Jan 23, 2009, 2:34am

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That's good news jack, I hope you are selling this stuff...most I've posted here in a while....FBX might bring me back to the UI machine we call tS.

Post by 3dpdk // Jan 23, 2009, 5:59am

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To help with Tiles X format texture problem:

If you export in text format, open the x file and examine the texture paths. There is no particular standard for the path description and depends largely on the programming language of the reading program. Since the x file is in text format you can easily edit the paths in a text editor.

Some programs like tS6.6 need the single back-slash "\" where 7.6 uses and exports with a double back slash "\\"

Some programs like FragMotion need the back-slash converted to a forward slash! "/" (I think this is an old requirement/programming mistake and has been corrected to a single backslash "\"

Some programs (written in "C", I think.) need the double back-slash "\\"

Not all programs want the textures in a sub-folder of the x file's location but need them in the same folder as the x file while others can follow the full texture path.

Some programs are still confined by the "x2" dimension rule - that the texture dimensions must be a power of 2 - as in 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, etc. Most programs today don't require a square dimension as in 2 x 2 but can work with a combination of these "x2" dimensions. This is often overlooked with tS users because tS works with any dimension textures. This dimension restritction can be required by the program for all image formats including .bmp, .jpg, .png, etc!

Some older programs are still stuck in DDS mode and need all textures converted to this older DirectX format.

Very few programs bother to explain their syntax requirements on texture paths, but usually the 6.6 X file export with "Export with full texture path" checked will solve a lot of problems!

A hint that the program you are exporting to is attempting to read the texture is that the model shows up with diffuse colors close to the "average" or predominant color of the actual texture. tS calculates this and exports that color in the material descriptor in the x file. Then it's just a matter of figuring out the syntax or listing conventions requirements of the other program. This usually involves experimenting .... a lot!

..... and TOTAL agreement with Tiles on Blender!!!!

Post by tamtam // Jan 23, 2009, 5:29pm

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Tiles said: Best working pipeline for me so far: Collada output from tS, then i load it into Ultimate Unwrap 3D, save it as FBX, import the FBX into MED, then save as MDL. You need Ultimate Unwrap for that though. But the money is well spent in my opinion


Well then will this work too?:


1. Export .obj from Ts model side and import into MED for 3d Game Studio A7. I belive MED supports the .obj format.


And/or


2. Export .obj from Ts model side, import the .obj in Maya 8.0 to UV map and animate, export as .fbx from Maya, and import into MED in 3d Game Studio.


Note: After that, in MED, I could save it as/export it in the .mdl format.


By the way, I found I do have the Game Pak!

What's the exact price for UU3d?


@nowherebrain - First of all, I looked in the help files for the SED of 3d Game Studio A7. I could not find the game templates that were discussed there, I mean the help files must be outdated, because the menu it discribed in the help files said something about adding a script in WED, but I didn't see that same submenu in the WED, and have since had trouble using the game templates.


Second of all, what (in the the SED) are "me", and "my" used for?

Also, are they variables, arrays, types, or something else (what are they in terms of syntax)?


@everyone - This language sure is a big step up from Dark Basic Pro. A family member of mine is a programmer, but not mainly for games, but actually he helps me when learning to program games, and he uses C++ and a couple other programming languages for business purposes.


Thankyou everyone!

Post by Tiles // Jan 23, 2009, 10:30pm

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1. Export .obj from Ts model side and import into MED for 3d Game Studio A7. I belive MED supports the .obj format.

As told, works except textures, which most of the times needs to be reapplied manually. I would in this case even recommend to use Blender as the translator because it is a hassle to reapply the missing textures in MED. Blender loads the OBJ Files from TS with textures. And then there is a MDL7 script for Blender. Means you don't even need to open MED anymore. Scroll down and click at export to mdl7 format link:

http://user.schule.at/go/blender/

Loading and saving OBJ is not the problem though. The problem is that OBJ cannot do animation. You need another file format for animation.

2. Export .obj from Ts model side, import the .obj in Maya 8.0 to UV map and animate, export as .fbx from Maya, and import into MED in 3d Game Studio.

Should work.


What's the exact price for UU3d?

http://www.unwrap3d.com/

Post by tamtam // Jan 24, 2009, 9:59am

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@Tiles - the second option I had in mind... would that keep the textures and animation with the model when imported into MED, and converted to or saved in .mdl format in MED? Is that what you meant by "Should work"?:confused:


Edit: Do I really need blender and/or UU3d to convert my models from Ts to some format usable by 3d Game Studio, or could I use the method I described (the second one)?


@nowherebrain - I had posted some questions about 3dgs programming. Please help.


Thanks again!:)

Post by nowherebrain // Jan 24, 2009, 10:32pm

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me and my, are pointers, predefined by the engine.

if you have a function that you want to change a paramater, and many objects run the same function you can use it to single that object out with another test.....e.g.

void pick_up()
{
if(vec_dist(player.x,my.x) <= 100)/*tests a distance to the player*/
{
do stuff();
}
}
...it checked the distance, and if 2 models share the same function only the one closest to the player(within 100 quants), will "do stuff".

Post by Tiles // Jan 24, 2009, 10:40pm

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FBX import works generally fine in MED. Never heard about any trouble. And lots of users work with and recommend FBX. But i don't know if the exported FBX from Maya does. That's what i mean with should work. :)


For animated stuff you need additional software at the moment. There is no direct pipeline from Workspace to MED. MED cannot read Collada nor can it proper import the Workspace X.


Static stuff should directly work by OBJ or 3DS. With the need to tweak the textures issue in MED then. That's why i said use Blender to reduce the reassigning hassle in MED to zero.


Hm. Why don't you simply try by yourself what works best for you? :)

Post by nowherebrain // Jan 24, 2009, 10:52pm

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not that anyone cares, but .obj works with textures from blender>MED...muliple images/texture id's. I've used it for years.

Post by lordmoggy // Jan 26, 2009, 1:50am

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Pity Conitec doesnt have support for Collada directly.


Pity that the exporter for FBX is taking sometime for truespace i am sure it will come sometime this year.


these two formats would surely be the best to completely support animation.


but using ultimate unwrap is one way of getting a pipeline working to get the model into gamestudio.:banana:

Post by nowherebrain // Jan 26, 2009, 5:45am

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Luckily for us Jack has been kind enough to start working on an FBX exporter/importer(both I think)...seeing as how the caligari team is too busy doing cloth etc than to even finish porting the renderer or already established tools(note the spite here)...all in all. I am just glad Jack is working on it, even if it is not done in a month or two.

Post by tamtam // Jan 27, 2009, 8:35am

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@nowherebrain - Speaking of the Ts cloth features, is there any tutorial on making clothing for characters with the cloth dynamics in Ts? :confused:


I need something like the garment tools in Maya Unlimited, except easier to use just like most of the Ts tools I know and love:), most of which are on the Model side.


What's a pointer in 3d Game Studio?:confused:

Post by TomG // Jan 27, 2009, 10:18am

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Pointers in any programming language are variables that store not a value themselves, but a memory address - this memory address is the location of an actual variable you will want to use.


So make a variable X, which is an integer. Then a pointer to X will store the address in memory where the variable X is kept. You can then reference and dereference the pointer to get at the contents of X etc.


The real-time cloth in tS is intended for simulation, rather than creation - the tools won't help you make clothes for characters. You'd have to create the clothes yourself via standard tS modeling tools, you could then apply cloth to make them "drape" onto a character perhaps, and freeze the end result and turn it into a static mesh again for export to your game.


I suspect the garment tools you mention are more related to creation / modeling, than to simulating afterward? I could be wrong though!


HTH!

Tom

Post by tamtam // Jan 27, 2009, 12:43pm

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Well, I actually think the Maya Unlimited garment tools for making clothing and general cloth items can start out as curves, then you convert them to dynamic cloth polygons with the cloth and garment tools by doing something called "stitching", just as if you were sewing a real garment. So yes they can be modeled into any shape with curves, and then the simulation starts when you run some animation frames after the two panels of cloth are made and stiched together. I have seen a bunch of Maya cloth tutorials, but have still not made a garment for any character, because I just could not follow the steps. Some of the tutorials' steps were hard because they didn't have much imagery, or just the final rendered image. I'm mainly a visual learner, and that's why I like looking at tutorials online for my favorite software I have. Unfortunately, I haven't found many (or any) sites that carry up-to-date Ts 7.5/7.6 tutorials. A long time ago, when I had Ts 4.3, or maybe it was 7.5, there was something here called "The Tutorium", and it might have been a place on the forum, and i'm sure it was filled with Ts tutorials.


Is the Tutorium still here, up-to-date?


BTW, thanks for the tip on the cloth in Ts Tom! Thankyou also for pointing out what pointers are.:):D

Post by TomG // Jan 27, 2009, 12:57pm

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The closest you could get to such a way of creating in tS would be NURBS. You can draw curves there, and then also stitch and join those together. This would be done in the Model side.


You would then need to convert these to polygons to go on and apply cloth simulation etc. NURBS are general purpose of course, sounds like the Maya tools may be fairly specifically for clothing, but maybe some of the techniques etc could carry across.


The Tutorium is still there - it is up to date, in the sense that it has all the tutorials in it that people have sent in. How often it updates is dependent on people sending in tutorials though :) If no-one sends any in, then we don't have any to post in there.


Don't forget all the free video courses too!


HTH!

Tom

Post by tamtam // Jan 27, 2009, 1:20pm

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Oh, don't worry about the free courses Tom, I have almost all of them on CDs from when I got Ts 7.5, and there was some holiday/X-mas special deal from which I got the gamePak, Ts 7.5, and all the courses that were available at the time, and also, the flashPak came with it too, but I never used that. I have FlashMX (I think it's the one called FlashMX2003, or maybe FlashMX 2004), yet I don't really use it, since i'm still trying to make good 3d models for a game I mentioned that I was working on a long while back.


I'm still trying to get the human form right for this game which i'm going to call "Peoplez", and it will be a human simulation game. I guess it's time I start learning to program in 3d Game Studio (with my dad's help, because he's a professional programmer).


"Peoplez" will be a hard game to make, and I know it's not good to start with a big project like a simulation game, but I am so determined to make this game, and I have been like that for about 3 or 4 years now, trying to make realistic, or cartoonish humans, which will be the "Peoplez".


Another thing... about NURBS: When I create a curve on the model side of Ts, after creating it, it snaps to the grid, or falls to the grid. Then I have to manually move the points up back to where I want them. What am I doing wrong with the NURBS?


Edit: I found the Tutorium, and it doesn't seem there are any tutorials from this year or last year yet. Well there might be a few tutorials from 2008. I don't know.

Post by TomG // Jan 27, 2009, 1:55pm

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Odd, I see a lot from last year - Tutorium is here:

http://forums1.caligari.com/truespace/forumdisplay.php?f=74


tS7 part is here:

http://forums1.caligari.com/truespace/forumdisplay.php?f=62


The tuts there are from Sept 08, 2 weeks ago, 1 week ago, then an 08, then a wall and opening from July 08, etc. So definitely 08s there. They arent listed in date order though for me, so that might appear confusing.


HTH!

Tom
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