Some textures are more complicated than others, and some are just plain confusing. One of these textures is the rear lights texture. Like you might have noticed, the rear lights are animated, but in a genious way, Stainless have done a couple of lines of extra code and saved memory by incorporating all frames of the animation into one bitmap. In this case; EABACKALL.TIF
The real trick here is to keep the places of the original blocks intact. Do not let the blocks overlap or they will not look right in the game.
The magic in Carma2's way of handling textures when using multiple separate blocks is that no matter how big (up to 256x256) the bitmap is, it is always split the right way, four ways in this case. I've seen many game engines in my time and most of them have insisted on cutting blocks in "pixels" instead of "percentage", meaning that if a texture was 64x64 originally, resizing it to 128x128 would leave the game showing only one eighth of the texture instead of a quarter.
The headlights are also animated, but unlike the tail-lights, separate textures are used. The "lit" texture is of no use whatsoever. It is a ghost from the past that was supposed to be used when the player turned the headlights on in the game. It would have been a beautiful effect sure, but sadly it was dropped by Stainless due to lack of time.
All of the headlight textures are 32x32
Head lights are pretty easy to produce as such, but remember that they share the wing object with another texture, so the background colour scheme should correspond to that of the shared texture in order to create a seamless skin for the wings. Like the tail-lights, the same texture is used for both sides, so text and symbols do not fit into these textures since they are reversed (mirrored horizontally).
The wheels too form their own area of texturing. The name of the Eagle3 wheel graphic "EWHEEL6.TIF
" suggests that the original designer of the car had numerous tires designed, some good and some less successful, from which he picked the best one to be used on the Eagle3. Or, it's a telltale sign of blood, toil, sweat and tears (most probably).
Designing a good looking wheel is one thing, making the bastard balanced is possibly even harder in the virtual world than in reality. The tactical spots in wheels are the thin layer of pixels that is used for the Tread
, the Centre
and the Rim or Wheel
(metal part), which defines the diameter of itself and thickness of the Tyre
. When you want to design your own wheels, make sure they are symmetric and perfectly balanced, or you'll get the Colin McRae Rally effect
(just play the game and look at the tyres! Muhaha).
The most difficult to master and most demanding texturing trick to perform is the appliance of transparency or translucency of a texture. Like we all know, some textures are tranclucent or have transparent "holes" in them, whilst most textures are solid.
Creating a window texture or a ghost texture (tranclucent) demands a bit more than usual from the software and requires some skill from the user, but I'm sure you can manage.
Like I mentioned earlier, C2 was made with Photoshop. Thus, being resourceful types, the blokes at Stainless decided to use Alpha Channels
for defining where a texture is to be transparent, translucent or solid. Back in the simple 256 colour days, this was done by simply defining color value 1 (first shade in the 256 palette) to always show as transparent, which was easy, and primitive.
To my knowledge, Alpha Channels can only be handled with Photoshop
, so PSP users will have to wait for this feature to be implemented.
Open a texture you wish to make transparent. I'm going to use the texture that I edited earlier, EBONNET.TIF
Once you have it open in Photoshop, select from the Layers Tab
and click on Channels
.Then click on the new channel button on the bottom part to create a new channel. A new channel called "Alpha 1
" will pop up. Your texture should now appear black, which is caused by the new Alpha channel being selected.
Now, pick the Pen tool, a colour; WHITE for solid, BLACK for transparent and GRAY (or anything between 1-100%) for translucent.
Click the EYE icons in the Channels
tab to select a channel to view the image through the colour channel of your choice. Selecting the Alpha channel and another channel will make it easier to draw the transparent spots onto the Alpha channel.
Once you have finished the spots you want to have a transparency/translucency effect, save your TIFF over the original file
It doesn't matter what channel is selected when you save.
Well, that just about covers the car texturing. To avoid repeating myself, these tutorials have a certain order in which they are to be read, so the texture stuff you have learnt now and from reading the Getting Started
tutorial is automatically presumed to be in your knowledge. The next tutorial covers Pedestrian texturing.
Special thanks to Russel Hughess at Stainless Software for the help!