SFC Orion Pirates
Question: Do you know what the range of the poly counts are on the SFC3 models?
Bradley W. Schenck: It depends
quite a bit on the models. In most cases we tried to keep the non-break
version of the model at or below 1500 polys; many of them really didn't
need that much and came in around 1000. One of the biggest, against
all intuition, is the Cube.
Question: Thanks. So you say the models are exactly the same as SFC2 and OP?
Bradley W. Schenck: The model
format is the same, but there are no individual Level of Detail (LOD)
models or LOD textures. (However),there is one additional mapped effect:
progressive damage. This will make more sense when you see one, but
the damage map is a sort of charcoalized version of the original image
map; its mixed in at the point where a weapon strikes the hull. Damage
textures have their own illumination maps and are not added to the ship's
material in Max; they're named to match the corresponding image map
and are loaded automatically.
Bradley W. Schenck: Yup, that's what it means. There's a schematic view for Tactical, another for the Ship Configuration/Vessel Library, and a beauty shot for the Ship Configuration/Vessel Library. The .gf file tells the game where to place the hardpoint icons on those images.
Question: When can modelers have access to the SFC3 modding specs so that they can start modding ships into SFC3 format? Specifically, when will the details of the .gf file and the new damage textures be released?
Bradley W. Schenck: I have written a modeling manual for SFC3 that describes all of these features. We'll be making a pdf of that available. It includes some step-by-step images for the way we've made our own damage textures, though you could do anything you like. If you substitute these for the normal textures, your ship will look like something out of "Night of the Living Dead." Also, in the models directory for SFC3 is a folder called "modinfo" which contains backdrops to use in UI images and some source Photoshop files to help with hardpoint placement. The only parts of the manual that are not yet included are information about adding glows, which were added to the game after the manual was written, and instructions on how to actually add the ship into the game, which I don't know how to do. Those should be added by release.
Question: Is the warp effect hard coded or is that moddable too?
Bradley W. Schenck: Sorry, its a real-time engine effect, no practical way to make it moddable as far as I know.
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