I didn't make it!
Well, I just converted a .nif from Star Trek: Bridge Commander. It is already hardpointed and I have all of the textures. Currently it is in a .3ds format and the texture files are in .tga format still.
My question is: What do I have to exactly do to get this unit into the game (if it's even possible)
Any help will be appreciated. :nodding:
Technically it's illegal to convert models from the game of one company to the game of another company.
FYI Sadim. Its actually a very grey area as most game producers allow modding whilst a bare handful don't. It also depends if this is for personal usage or public release. Like I said, a VERY grey area. Anyway Toadnuke, a sort of mini tutorial (which is VERY basic at best).
Most important are the programs your going to need:
- 3dmax is currently the only program that has the necessary plugin to allow ALO conversion. Version 6 was primarily used with the original game and its expansion but the ALO exporter will work with 3dmax 8 and 9. No other version is supported or has been reported to work. The exporter plugins come with the Map editor downloads for each game. You will also require the EaW/FoC directx 9 shaders which are also installed with the map editor.
- Nvidia DDS plugin for Photoshop (or any program that can save as DDS format). I use Photoshop 7 myself and have found it works fine, but I believe the plugin works with any version (I know of people who use later versions than me without any problems).
- EaW/FoC XML files. These are absolutely necessary as ALL mods require the ones you edit to work (obviously).
Now comes the interesting bit. In most unit cases they appear in both parts of the game (that is Galactic Conquest and Skirmish). There are a bare handful of what I refer to as primary XML files you need:
- GAMEOBJECTFILES.XML This is absolutely necessary as it makes the game check all the sub XML files and load them as needed. If you don't include your new units XML filename in this list it will not appear in game even if the ones below are correct. - STARBASES.XML Another necessary file. This file controls such things as starbase level and what can be built (skirmish play only which is almost at the bottom of the file). If you look in the individual unit XML files and look at the top theres a unique name for each ship (for example the Empires "Acclamator"). Its this name thats entered under the skirmish starbase level and when the starbase reaches that level you'll have access to the new unit. - YOURUNIT.XML Obviously you'll need your own units personal XML file. It contains the necessary data for Galactic Conquest (most of the file contains the necessary data for this), and also the initial 6 or so lines of code required for Skirmish. This is usually such changes as basic costs which are nearly always different for a skirmish version of a unit.
Whilst those three files are absolutely necessary there are others which might be require depending on how your unit works. For example. If you include any uniquely named hardpoints then you'll require editing the HARDPOINTS.XML file or creating your own. You will most likely also require editing the MasterTextFile_ENGLISH.DAT file if you unit require unique text such as the encyclopedia entry. Icons are usually 50*50 pixel sized TGA based images with an alpha channel. These are used by adding the icon directly to the Mt_commandbar.tga file so you also need the MTD file editor (which I think is on this main site). Finally I would stress that you download and examine other peoples mods to see how the basic files are used as it'll make your life much easier. Modding this game is no different to others and will take time, but once you get the basics down you should find adding ships and other units a breeze.