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News - Model converter with extensive Quake support

Postby scar3crow » Mon Nov 01, 2010 11:39 pm

Señor Casaroja, a man who does not seem to like much attention but loves to give has released the latest version of his non-commercial data format converter Noesis. Of note is the rather extensive support for mdl, md2, md3, and md5, as well as apparently some cool palette support which is of particular interest to Quake modders. Go check out some screenshots and give it a download here!
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Postby Mexicouger » Tue Nov 02, 2010 12:06 am

He sure does like to model Girls :shock:
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Postby Sajt » Tue Nov 02, 2010 1:42 am

Hmm... does this mean I'm off the hook? :o Does it do EVERYTHING?
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Postby Rich » Tue Nov 02, 2010 3:54 am

Sajt wrote:Hmm... does this mean I'm off the hook? :o Does it do EVERYTHING?


Here's a summary of the MDL stuff from the readme:

-For MD2, pay attention to the "Skin path:" printout at the end of your export. Skin paths need to be absolute to work in Quake II, so you may need to add something alone the lines of -texpre /models/monsters/infantry/ to your advanced options. (only as an example, you should replace the infantry path with wherever your skinpage.pcx will end up)
-For MDL, you will probably want to use -mdlavoidfb in the advanced options, if you want your model to look correct in software and you have not custom-crafted a Quake palette for it.
-The -mdlskinsize advanced option will work for both MDL and MD2 texture output.
-MD3 allows you to specify any bone in your import model as a tag on export - see the -md3tbone option.
-MDL, MD2, and MD3 are all generally interchangeable in terms of data they import/export. The main things to note are the potential loss of vertex/texture coordinate precision and MD3 tags.
-All MD* formats can also bake skeletal animation data out to their vertex frames. This happens automatically when you convert a model with skeletal animation data. You can also use -loadrda to load pre-generated RDA animation files and combine them with static skeletal meshes. (the results will be baked into the MDL/MD2/MD3)
-The MDL and MD2 exporters automatically generate a single texture page from all textures that the model being converted references, compensating the texture coordinates in the model. This can be incredibly handy, since MDL and MD2 only allow a single texture page to be referenced. Texture pages can be grabbed from within your source model, and on the local path in any image format that Noesis supports. Just remember to have your textures all in the same folder as the model being imported/exported.


It supports a bunch of import formats, and allows baking skeletal animation data from all of them, including some more common/popular ones like SMD and COLLADA. It also auto-gathers textures from external and internal (where applicable for the import format) sources and auto-combines them into a Q1/Q2-paletted texture page with optional resizing/resampling options.

I think it supports everything you could want pertaining to MDL/MD2/MD3, but I'm not entirely sure. Almost all of this functionality was already in Noesis for other formats, and the MD* formats just plugged in nicely. So let me know if it's lacking somehow, particularly relative to any existing tools/exporters that already exist for these formats.
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Postby leileilol » Tue Nov 02, 2010 4:03 am

Look at all those japanese console game models down there. That's gonna make the psp quake dev kids to go convert crazy lol...

I notice a loaded Kyle Katarn.... hope for a non-3dsmax GLM export pipeline?!!?
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Postby Rich » Tue Nov 02, 2010 4:10 am

leileilol wrote:Look at all those japanese console game models down there. That's gonna make the psp quake dev kids to go convert crazy lol...

I notice a loaded Kyle Katarn.... hope for a non-3dsmax GLM export pipeline?!!?


Oh, I always thought that Raven released carcass and that people were happy enough using it. Although I never really looked at or used the tool, so I have no idea. I just assumed people were happy with it based on the giant number of custom JK2/JA models out there. That's also the only reason I've never considered making a GLM+GLA export path.
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Postby Downsider » Tue Nov 02, 2010 4:22 am

Señor Casaroja does not condone or support any form of copyright violation, and if you use Señor Casaroja's tools to rip and illegally distribute copyrighted content, Señor Casaroja will track you down and make you pay for your crimes. Do not cross Señor Casaroja.


Great sense of humor, too! I like this guy already.
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Postby leileilol » Tue Nov 02, 2010 4:23 am

It's not just JK2. GLM also applies to Folder of Sortune : II Houble Delix also.

As for the MD* formats, don't forget MDS (rtcw), MD4 (Elite Force (but they call it MDR to claim it lol)) and TIK (Uber-enhanced Q3 skel format (mohaa, alice, fakk2)). MDC is just a compressed MD3 and the rtcw code can produce them
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Postby Rich » Tue Nov 02, 2010 4:38 am

leileilol wrote:It's not just JK2. GLM also applies to Folder of Sortune : II Houble Delix also.

You do realize who you're talking to, don't you? :)

leileilol wrote:As for the MD* formats, don't forget MDS (rtcw), MD4 (Elite Force (but they call it MDR to claim it lol)) and TIK (Uber-enhanced Q3 skel format (mohaa, alice, fakk2)). MDC is just a compressed MD3 and the rtcw code can produce them

I just meant MD* within the scope of the MD* supported by the program. I don't plan to support the more obscure variations, unless there's a call for it.

Although I've considered Tiki model support in the past, that's one that would be fun to add if anyone actually cared. It really doesn't have anything at all to do with any of the core MD* formats, though, outside of keeping some of the same concepts. Bundling it in with them would be kinda like bundling GLM in with them too.
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Postby leileilol » Tue Nov 02, 2010 6:45 am

Rich wrote:You do realize who you're talking to, don't you? :)

Poor Blackshack?
Rich wrote:I don't plan to support the more obscure variations, unless there's a call for it.

Well... umm.. the RTCW/ET GPL source release? Current'y, it's impossible to make a skeletal character for the game without a copy of 3D Studio Max. 3dsMax dependency is the bottleneck of everything.

Unreal formats (.psk, .3d) could be supported. With the popularity of the UDK it's inevitable to do psk at some point. 3d, not so much, but UT is still the most popular title in the series...
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Postby r00k » Tue Nov 02, 2010 7:19 am

I've noticed i can load the .md5anim files is it possible to take a model mesh of one type and append the animation of of another to it? Creating one animation file for several versions of a player model for instance.
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Postby Rich » Tue Nov 02, 2010 8:01 am

r00k wrote:I've noticed i can load the .md5anim files is it possible to take a model mesh of one type and append the animation of of another to it? Creating one animation file for several versions of a player model for instance.


You can export animation files to .rda, then use the -loadrda switch to combine them into any format that supports skeletal mesh and animation data.

If you mean you want to concatenate animation files, you have to export them all to .rda, then write an .animlist file which is just a plain text file with the name of one of the rda files on each line. Then export the .animlist to another .rda and you end up with a single .rda that is the sum of all the .rda's listed in the .animlist. Assuming that still works, I haven't tested it in years.
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Postby Sajt » Tue Nov 02, 2010 5:49 pm

There are a few obvious absences in this program. Like a list of frames and the ability to move/import/export them. Also things like fullbright rendering. But I have the feeling those will be implemented by the time I would even start Qwalk 2.

Is this thing ever going to be open source, or cross-platform? :o

edit: If you have the energy to bother, you should reverse engineer the QME 3.1 .mdo format!
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Postby Rich » Tue Nov 02, 2010 9:55 pm

Sajt wrote:There are a few obvious absences in this program. Like a list of frames and the ability to move/import/export them. Also things like fullbright rendering. But I have the feeling those will be implemented by the time I would even start Qwalk 2.

Is this thing ever going to be open source, or cross-platform? :o

edit: If you have the energy to bother, you should reverse engineer the QME 3.1 .mdo format!


I hadn't even thought of any of those things. :) A morph frame viewer is definitely something I'll be adding now that you've made me think about it, as Noesis supports a bunch of formats with morph frames outside of just the Quake models so it's a good general feature.

Open source, maybe one day. Cross-platform, maybe one day too. The entire core is written into a platform-independent (from a library/compiler standpoint) DLL, and the interface part is a relatively tiny amount of code, so a port wouldn't be as painful as it might seem from looking at its Windowsness. Fortunately it also runs quite perfectly in every WINE distribution I'm aware of. For now, I tend to just post random source modules to reveal the specs of the model formats I reverse. My only reason for not going full-open-source is because there are some proprietary geometry processing algorithms and other useful library stuff I've written shared in the tool and my licensed (well, at least once so far) tech, and I don't want to put that stuff under GPL until its commercial worth is good and dead.

It supports plugins, though, which allow you do to just about anything you could want in terms of format expansion. The generic archive support can even be used to do crazy and random things, like if you wanted to... write a midi to wave renderer plugin, just for example. (first thing I thought of because Tomaz had me thinking about it) The MD2 import+export path is also in an external plugin, and the code for it is included with the rest of the plugin source in the program zip.

Are the specs for QME's mdo unknown? If they are known, I would be happy to see someone other than me actually using that plugin system. :) If they aren't known, I actually talked to the author of QME a very long time ago, on the order of like... hell, I think it was a good 13+ years ago, and he seemed like a pretty nice guy. I was just dwelling in game code and QuakeC back then and I was kind of enamored by his accomplishments with QME, so I asked him about what he used to develop it, and he told me about his engineering choices and why he went with Pascal and shit. I bet if someone asked, he'd be happy to give the specs for the model format out. If he's still alive.
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Postby Sajt » Wed Nov 03, 2010 12:41 am

Rich wrote:Are the specs for QME's mdo unknown? If they are known, I would be happy to see someone other than me actually using that plugin system. :) If they aren't known, I actually talked to the author of QME a very long time ago, on the order of like... hell, I think it was a good 13+ years ago, and he seemed like a pretty nice guy. I was just dwelling in game code and QuakeC back then and I was kind of enamored by his accomplishments with QME, so I asked him about what he used to develop it, and he told me about his engineering choices and why he went with Pascal and shit. I bet if someone asked, he'd be happy to give the specs for the model format out. If he's still alive.


I'm pretty sure nobody knows the QME .mdo specs. It never occurred to me that Rene what's his face might still be alive, but I guess it's possible.

As for plugins, I would write one if you hadn't already done all the formats I am familiar with.

Are you going to move the implementation for other formats to plugins?
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