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Well, this is another saber mod that makes the core smaller. Yes, it did change the colors around a bit and some other things, os I will give the author credits. If I'm not mistaken however, when the author says
But I also wanted the sabers to look reasonably movie-ish
I was under the assumption that the lightsabers in the movies are way thicker than the original JK2 ones. Oh well, that's just my opinion. Nice job by kcbrown here, I hope too see these lightsabers updated with maybe some different saber colors. Very good job otherwise, though.
README for Kev's Saber Pack --------------------------- JEDI KNIGHT II JEDI OUTCAST MOD Title : Kev's Saber Pack File Name : KevSabers.pk3 File Size : 379k Author(s) : Kevin Brown Email Address : email@example.com ============================================================= Installation instructions: Extract the KevSabers.pk3 file into your GameData\base folder. Note that if you have a different saber mod already installed then it'll be unpredictable which one gets picked up by the game. Hope you like them! Description: Yeah, yeah, I know saber mods have been done to death. But hopefully you'll like these anyway. I haven't been all that satisfied with the sabers that are available. About the closest thing I've found to "perfection" for me has been the Episode 2 blades by Pheen_e_Kass. But even those weren't quite right in my eyes. What I was after were sabers that would look more or less "real" if such things existed in the "real world". That means that they would really look like glowing objects with a definite surface. Additionally, there would be a relationship between the glow right next to the surface and the glow further away: the glow closer to the object would be "hotter", which means it would be putting out more higher-frequency light than the glow further away. But I also wanted the sabers to look reasonably movie-ish. So the wide glow around the blade (what I'll call the "penumbra") had to look roughly the same as it does in the movies. At least the colors had to be close. So I started with those colors and worked backwards. And so the red saber has an orangeish glow next to the blade, the orange one has a yellowish glow, the yellow one has greenish glow, and the purple one has a whitish glow (since the eye can't see frequencies higher than purple). But since I was also going for a nice movie-ish look, I had to make some compromises in the "realism" department as regards colors. So the green saber has a yellowish glow and the blue saber has a whitish glow (the blue saber looks quite cool with a dark-blue/purplish glow next to it, but I deferred to the movies on this. Even so, the glow coming off the blade is ever so slightly purplish, unnoticeable to all but the most discerning eye). You can see all this in the picture I've included, which shows the sabers in full as well as in detail. As for the size (width) of the blade, I set it up with a slight taper (almost unnoticeable) and set the width at the base such that it would fill the black "hole" that is present in the end of the default saber handle. This gives them dimensions that should be close to the blades in most of the movies except for Episode 2, which used significantly wider blades. One other thing I improved was the resolution of the blades produced. The resolution of the saber images supplied by the game is fine for most things in the game, but you can see the pixelation in-game upon a closer inspection (for instance, when you're standing with your back against a wall). So the sabers I'm supplying here have a significantly higher resolution: 256x1024 for the blades themselves. This should stand up to close scrutiny a lot better, and I think the example image I supply demonstrates that. As I mentioned earlier, I tried to start with penumbra colors that matched the movies as much as possible and work backwards from that. That's not a terribly easy task, as the colors tend to vary a bit from movie to movie and, even worse, even within a movie. I ended up experimenting with a number of sources for colors, among them being online trailer footage (view the trailer, take a screenshot, then subtract the background color from the penumbra color to get a "pure" penumbra color), still pictures, and of course the movies themselves on DVD and laserdisc. In the end, I used the Episode 2 trailers to derive the red and green colors. I used the old Mark I eyeball while watching Episode 2 on DVD to derive the blue and purple colors (Mace Windu's saber, interestingly enough, looks a lot different on the DVD than in the trailers). I tried to pay special attention to the blue color in particular. I looked not only at the basic color as seen against a black background, but also at the color when seen against lighter objects (Obi-Wan's fight against Jango Fett is a particularly good scene for this, because we get to see what the penumbra looks like against a very light background). Hopefully I got it reasonably close to correct. Some may notice that the penumbras aren't terribly bright. That's intentional for two reasons. The first is that in real life, they probably wouldn't be (in fact, they wouldn't really exist at all except in very humid air). But more importantly, the way the game renders them (by painting lots of instances of the penumbra image along the length of the saber) makes it look really stupid when the penumbra image is relatively bright: the fact that they're circular becomes immediately obvious. This effect isn't nearly as bad when the penumbra is relatively dim. I tried to get the penumbras to all come out roughly the same in intensity. This is harder than simply setting the "value" parameter the same in HSV color space, since the human eye responds more readily to reds and greens than it does blues. So I used the blue penumbra as a reference and reduced the intensity of all the others until each looked about the same intensity as the blue one. A surprising amount of work went into these, as I ended up having to experiment with pretty much everything: colors, shapes, glow patterns, glow colors, gradients, smoothing, etc., along with learning the tool I used to create these to begin with (the GIMP under Linux). My thanks to all the other saber creators out there. Not only did you give me inspiration to create my own, but it was very useful to be able to look at your work. I am in your debt. Thanks also to the LucasArts crew for such an awesome game. Kevin Brown November, 2002
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