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Author Topic: Battlezone Unit Icon Tutorial by GreenHeart  (Read 3626 times)
GreenHeart
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« on: November 14, 2010, 12:18:22 AM »

UnFinished Tutorial:  Later this week I'll create some tutorial images so u can see what i'm doing step by step.  Then i'll need someone to go over this tutorial to be sure their isn't any problems or misunderstandings.  Also Nielk pointed out a tutorial using max & an photo editing tool which maybe found here

 Rendering WIP Images in 3D Studio MAX


Tools required:
           model viewer:  3D Exploration or some way to get a render shot of your model as shown in the tutorial.
          Photo Editing:   Gimp:  A free photo Editing program that supports alpha layers.

Model Viewer Program - 3D Exploration:
1.)  Load your model in to the model viewer.
2.)  Set the background color to black.
3.)  Use the camera rotation so that your viewing the model's side view.
4.)  In 3D exploration you'll need to turn off the texture materials & switch the lights to blue lights.
5.)  Adjust the Lighting brightness so it looks close to the stock icon images.
6.)  Use the camera tool to zoom out so that the model view will be close to 32x32 size when u take a render or snapshot.  Rescaling in PhotoEditing may cause the image to blurr.
7.)  Now you'll need to click the render button or hit printscreen.


Photo Editing Program - Gimp
8.) Load Rendered image into the photo editing tool.

If you used printscreen then you'll have to goto file new &  chose the RGB Color Format. whatever your monitor resolution is will be the size of the image you'll need to create.  Paste your image thats on the clipboard into the new template you just created.

9.) In Gimp you'll need to turn on the layers panel if you haven't already done so.  
     Window pulldown at top menu -> Dialogs  ->  Layers

10.) in the layers panel click "duplicate layers" button if your layer is set as the background layer because Gimp don't allow us to edit the background layer.  Then hide or delete that background layer since we only need an editable layer.

11.) In order to get the image to a 32x32 size,we will need to use the "select rectangular regions". hold down the shift button to keep the selection box square & make the selection box around the model image.  after making the selection box go into the menu -> Image -> CropImage.

12.)  Next we'll need to adjust the cropped image size by going into the menu & choosing
        Window pulldown at top menu -> Image  -> scale Image    then type 32 pixels for the width & height.


11.) In order to make the alpha layer we will need to use the "Select contiguous regions", i call it the selection wand.  after clicking the want button you'll need to adjust some selection options.
Mode:  "replace the current selection"
turn off: Antialiasing & feather edges.
unchecked options:  "sample merged"

13.)  In the layer's panel right click the image layer & choose from the context menu "add layer mask", then you'll get a popup window. Select the "Layer's Alpha Channel" & click OK.

14.) In the layer's panel you should see a white box layer appear to the right size,click it to select that layer.

15.) Now you'll need to use the buck fill tool, gimp calls it "fill with a color or pattern"  hot key:  shift+b
 
16.)  using the black color for the bucket tool, click the image to set the alpha channel mask.  you should see white layer change to have the black color around it.  Gimp also enables the transparency in the color image to allow you to see what you've done so far.

17.) Save your image as a  xcf if your using gimp to keep a source image file & then save the tga file.

18.) If your planning to use this tga file in the 1.3 patch then you'll need to download the BZ2 DXT Generator & convert the tga file into the dxtbz2 format which is REQUIRED.


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Many failures will take place in the process of attempting to achieve your goal. It don't matter how many times you fail, Its how much you've learn each time since its apart of the learning process.
GreenHeart
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« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2010, 01:39:59 AM »

 load the xsi

tweak step to render settings with images.
missing step:  Hide checkerboard in 3d exploration by hitting Control + G.   (display ->  grid -> no Grid)
add where to find the background color setting in 3d exploration
add where to find light color settings & hot key

switch to paint.net since its abit easyier & quicker to use.
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Many failures will take place in the process of attempting to achieve your goal. It don't matter how many times you fail, Its how much you've learn each time since its apart of the learning process.
BNG
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« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2010, 03:39:18 PM »

You can also make unit and wire icons directly out of your 3d modeler if you have the capability of rendering a model to a graphic format like TGA. Here's a link on how to do both using GIMP to get the images prepared for BZII using Truespace 7.61 Beta 8 modelside. They are fairly simple to make and the tutorial shows how to add an INF description to your model. I used GIMP to set the Alpha transparency of the unit and wire icon image. The default color in GIMP is White, so when you render the icon and wire image to file set the output size to 32x32 for icon and 128x128 for the wire [render as hidden line for a cleaner wire image] icon. Then in load the images in to GIMP and use the Layer>Transparency>Color to Alpha feature to prepare the images for use with BZII.

Making Unit and Wire Icons for your models using Truespace and GIMP.
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