Author Topic: [Progress Update] In The Beginning  (Read 1813 times)

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Offline Trivial Psychic

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Re: [Progress Update] In The Beginning
I've run into a bit of a stumbling-block in terms of testing.... I can't currently test my missions.  Basically, the fire button on my Thrustmaster T.16000M is malfunctioning.  It's been giving my trouble on-and-off for the past 6 months, but lately its been firing once out of every 20 or so pulls.  I'm considering doing some surgery to see if I can correct the problem, but I also have a contingency plan ready to implement to purchase a new one by the end of the month.

In the meantime however, I'm working on related art projects.  Yesterday I used the included templates to create nameplate maps for a half-a-dozen ships.  I plan on ultimately creating one for every Nova-class in the campaign, unfortunately there is no template for Hyperion or Olympus class.  I'll need to pace myself however, as my method is a little hard on the wrist.  It's a pity none of the TBP ships have modeled nameplates like the current FS2 ships, but the mod doesn't have the crew it used to.

I suppose, once I'm done I can turn my attention towards the loading screens.
The Trivial Psychic Strikes Again!

 

Offline Trivial Psychic

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Re: [Progress Update] In The Beginning
Well, I've ordered my replacement T.16000M.  I should have it by this coming Monday.  In the meantime, I've gone through and created nameplates for every Nova class in the campaign, but I've come up with a further idea.  Using the skills and software I acquired creating the nameplates, (rudimentary though they are), I got the idea to make some further visual enhancements.  There are more than a dozen Hyperion cruisers in the game that are under pirate control, so I've decided to give them distinctive paint schemes to differentiate them from the EA ships, and even from each other.  I've been using Google search to find some appropriate images and superimposing them on the maps.  This should occupy my time until the new stick arrives.
The Trivial Psychic Strikes Again!

 

Offline 0rph3u5

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Re: [Progress Update] In The Beginning
What have you done to combat the issue that the maps on the Hyperion are mirrored? (you can see it with the EA logo)

The Nova and Omega were specifically edited to avoid that problem with the nameplates. - that why you see a mirrored space on the Nova_01 and Omega_01 textures
« Last Edit: June 14, 2022, 03:11:43 pm by 0rph3u5 »
"As you sought to steal a kingdom for yourself, so must you do again, a thousand times over. For a theft, a true theft, must be practiced to be earned." - The terms of Nyrissa's curse, Pathfinder: Kingmaker

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"I am Curiosity, and I've always wondered what would become of you, here at the end of the world." - The Guide/The Curious Other, Othercide

"When you work with water, you have to know and respect it. When you labour to subdue it, you have to understand that one day it may rise up and turn all your labours into nothing. For what is water, which seeks to make all things level, which has no taste or colour of its own, but a liquid form of Nothing?" - Graham Swift, Waterland

"...because they are not Dragons."

 

Offline Trivial Psychic

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Re: [Progress Update] In The Beginning
I'm not using nameplates for the Pirate vessels, just hull art, so mirroring is irrelevant.  That said, there is a certain amount of trial and error, as it's hard to ascertain when sections of a map are used elsewhere.  Regardless, I've managed to give 2 ships some custom makeovers.  All of the pirate vessels have key Hyperion maps changed to black & white, to eliminate the EF blue stripes, and recolored the bridge light to red.  I did find that I was losing considerable image quality when I added my art, so I decided to try something.  I took the original Hyperion maps that I needed, doubled their side, and use a sharpening tool in Paint.net to get rid (somewhat) of the blurring, and then put my art images on top.  I'm not completely happy with the results, but it is an improvement.
The Trivial Psychic Strikes Again!

 

Offline Trivial Psychic

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Re: [Progress Update] In The Beginning
Well, my replacement Thrustmaster came in Thrusday, 4 days ahead of the estimated delivery date and only two days after I ordered it.  Regardless, I didn't have a change to test it out until last night, and everything checks out.  To quote Miguel Ferrer from Hot Shots Part Deux, "I can KILL again!  You've given me a reason to LIVE!"  Anyway, I also learned that when you decide to change the color of a ship's maps, you also have to change the corresponding shinemaps as well.  I just did used the original Hyperion shinemaps and switched them to black & white, but I'd like to have my new decals with their proper shine color.  Is a simple way of creating new shinemaps to just darken down the base map?
The Trivial Psychic Strikes Again!

 

Offline Trivial Psychic

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Re: [Progress Update] In The Beginning
So I've taken a break from my pirate remapping, though I only have 2 ships left to do... and I still haven't entirely decided how to adorn them, and I've also been doing my play-through to both squash bugs and add character dialogue, but I've taken a break from that too, to follow my latest endeavor.

The campaign has a number of exerts from the movie, added in as command briefings, mission briefings, and debriefings... as well as the necessary in-mission voice files.  I've gotten the audio for them all, but I've been wanting to do more.  As I've been on vacation this week, I got it in my head to try something bold, add in the corresponding video exerts from the movie for the command briefings.  I was really hoping I could just cut out the video segment, drop it into the intelanims folder and let it play, but it seems that only ani, eff, and (A)PGN formats are permitted.  While I've got software to turn a video file into separate image files, it only extracts them to jpg format.  I've got paint.net that could convert them into PGN files, but it seemed like a lot of hassle, especially if it didn't work.  Then I got the idea to simply use an eff file, so I've been hard at work doing that, and I just completed... (drum roll) my second eff file.  It has taken a lot of trial and error, and lots of manual work (for which there's probably a simpler solution) to get them ready.

First, I was relieved to discover that eff files can be made to use jpgs, as the wiki doesn't mention that as a compatible format.  Secondly, my extraction software doesn't give you an option of how you want them named.  EFF files need to have their numerical sequence ending in _XXXX, and my extraction software only does 3 digits and precedes it a space, I have to go through and rename them all to match.  Also, the software starts at 001, and EFFs need to start with 0000, so I have to take that in account.  Thirdly, after I got them all properly renamed, I find that the audio for a command briefing stage won't play until the text sound effect has played, while the animation video will play from the get-go.  I checked the sound effect and saw that it was about 1.3 seconds, so I created the first 31 frames of the animation as total black frames... only to find that its more like 2.3 seconds before the audio starts playing, so I had to create another 24 black frames.  Also, each time I added more frames to the beginning, I had to rename all of the subsequent frames... again, manually.  Finally, as the original video was 23.98 frames per second, I set the eff file to 24, but found that by the end of it, the video had out-run the audio, so I had to reduce the frame-rate to 23, which seems to do the trick... though it's still out of sync by a fraction of a second.  Regardless, I seem to have achieved success, now knowing that I have to add 55 frames of black at the beginning of every one.

At one point I was considering the idea of completely cutting the video segment out and using it as a cutscene instead of command briefing, but I've been warned that it could be increasing the risk of getting caught in a copyright infringement.  I guess I'll have to settle for the command briefing stages.

I'll keep y'all updated.
The Trivial Psychic Strikes Again!