After seeing this requested a few times I thought I would post the method that I personally use so that others can benefit from it (and remember that not everyone knows how to do this, before anyone says anything):
I've also gone on the premise that the modder will either already have a ship image or know how to use 3dmax to render any images.
What I use: 3dmax studio, model & texture files (obviously) and Paint Shop Pro.
1) Open the model as normal in 3dmax and use the top view to make either a 64*64 or 128*128 pixel sized rendered image. (The stock ships use a wireframe image of each ship but this isn't 100% necessary). 2) Open this image using paint shop pro and rotate it to the left 90 degrees. 3) Use the SELECTIONS drop down menu and click on SELECT ALL. 4) Click the SELECTIONS drop down menu once and again and then click MODIFY and then click TRANSPARENT color. 5) From the new context menu box select BLACK and make sure the tollerance is between 10 and 15 and click OKAY.
At this point the image selection bow will change to encompass any non black areas.
6) Click the SELECTIONS drop down menu again and select SAVE TO ALPHA CHANNEL. 7) The stock name for the alpha channel is "ALPHA 1" but I believe you could use any name you like, so click OKAY and enter a new name then click OKAY. 8) Then click the FILE, then SAVE AS.... and select TRUEVISION TARGA (tga) from then Save as Type option and then click on OPTIONS. Make sure the image options are set to 24 BITS and UNCOMPRESSED (I've no idea whether compressed option will work but you could try it anyway). 9) Finally save the file name so it matches your ships M3d filename. For example:
For the courageous the ship filename is:
so the button for it would be named:
Note the HI_ at the beginning. I've tried a TGA file without this and it doesn't work so I believe its the games method of knowing whats an icon. If all goes well you should be able to run the game and the new icon will be transparent. Please note that you should be able to load the image into Photoshop and use a method (which I don't know or use) to create a DDS based file but I've found the game is quite happy with TGA files so the choice is yours.
Thanks for taking the time to make this tutorial MaP. It seems that some parts of the tutorial are similar to making a wireframe in Armada 2, which will make it easier for us Armada 2 modders. ;)
actually if you are using 3ds max you can render the wire frame at the appropriate size and save straight to .tga, even .dds. it will save the rendered alpha channel.
Yes, you could but then you'd have an image with no alpha channel.
i just said it would save the alpha channel... i do this all the time. this is also how i make the logos for the ships, cause it renders an alpha, it makes it much easier by removing alot of steps. all you have to do is select force wireframe on render, and then save to tga or dds(dxt5).
Appologies Moonraker. You are quite correct.
I hope this doesn't offend you MaP, but i have posted this on Legacy Alliance, i hope this is ok, if not, just say the word and i shall remove it. ;)
Where can I get 3dmax and paintshop pro? And are they free?
Sorry to say this Gavin but could you please remove the thread. I want little to nothing to do with that site or its staff. Thankyou.
Major A Payne;3531206Sorry to say this Gavin but could you please remove the thread. I want little to nothing to do with that site or its staff. Thankyou.[/quote] It has been removed.:) [quote=Ludwig;3530749]Where can I get 3dmax and paintshop pro? And are they free?
No, they are not free, quite far from it. 3D's max is very expensive.