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Author Sticky: Tips and guidelines for custom creature creation
PigLickJF
Game Owner
Profile: PigLickJFNWN


Joined: 24 Jun 2002
Posted: Tuesday, 10 June 2003 01:17AM
So my post was helpful then after all

I am a beginner too, that's the reason I posted what I did. The question you asked was pretty vague, and would have been very difficult for me to try and answer. However, I knew that the custom content guide would answer it much more easily, clearly, and completely than I ever could have anyway.

Glad you got it sortec out, and glad I could (pseudo-)help.

PigLick
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Scarressa
Game Owner
Profile: ScarressaNWN


Joined: 08 Jul 2002
From: Bristol, UK
Posted: Tuesday, 10 June 2003 12:10PM
Oh you did help. The problem I was having was a simple one to resolve. I think it was more a case of being blinded by all the .2da files.
  Profile: Scarressa   Send Message To: Scarressa
Chrometiger
Game Owner
Profile: ChrometigerNWN


Joined: 16 Jun 2003
From: Finland
Posted: Wednesday, 02 July 2003 03:12PM
From the Chilliskinner website, I got the idea that it really isn't compatible with GMax only 3ds Max, is this true?

If not, is it a plugin that can handle both GMax and 3ds Max?

The reason I'm asking the questions is that I really hate to do the skinning manually(stretching and merging vertexes isn't my stuff), and would like to make some Lightsaber hilts for JK2(I'm not saying that it wouldn't help creating my own models for NWN also) and for showing them on my SWRPG site(nothing looks better than a finely crafted image of a realistic-looking(modeled and skinned) lightsaber hilt in a character description along with a nice image of the wielder.
_________________
------
"Com'ere, you big furry hunk of flesh and I'll split your skull like a watermelon..."
- Battle taunt to a huge Dire Tiger, Thorin Kegsplitter, 12th level Dwarf Fighter
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The Avenged
Game Owner
Profile: The AvengedNWN
NWN: SoU
NWN: HotU


Joined: 09 Aug 2002
From: Norway
Posted: Monday, 07 July 2003 06:06PM
Anybody Know the color that is used for:
Metal 1 / 2
or
Leather 1 / 2
or
Skin?
or
Hair?

Or maybe someone know a way to get the *.PLT's converted to a format wich supports "layers" (When i import the *.bmp into Paint shop/Corel they seems to have only one layer, and that layer is colored in "user-chosen" colors)

The Avenged
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GabrielHelbringer
Game Owner
Profile: GabrielHelbringerNWN
NWN: SoU


Joined: 29 Jun 2003
Posted: Thursday, 17 July 2003 04:22AM
What programs are you guys using to model? Did you purchase them or can I get them online? Also, I just got the photoshop PLT pluggin thing and I am un sure about how to use it. If anyone can help me with all, or any, of this I could really use the help. Thanks.
  Profile: GabrielHelbringer   Send Message To: GabrielHelbringer
airebelle
Game Owner
Profile: airebelleNWN
NWN: SoU
NWN: HotU


Joined: 20 Jun 2003
From: New England, USA
Posted: Wednesday, 03 September 2003 10:37PM
Quote: Perhaps some snakelike creatures: Yuanti halfblood, Naga's, Cuatoal?, Medusa, Worms, Carrioncrawler etc.

Has any of this been done. Actually, just snakes would be nice.

A
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DM Shade
Game Owner
Profile: DM ShadeNWN
NWN: SoU
NWN: HotU


Joined: 28 Mar 2003
From: United States
Posted: Saturday, 24 January 2004 02:59AM
Here are some snakes.

Click Here
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Tasden
Game Owner
Profile: TasdenNWN


Joined: 13 Jan 2004
Posted: Saturday, 24 January 2004 08:04PM
Man, just reading all this stuff gives me a headache. I've had the game since christmas '02 (though i just joined on here this month) and I still haven't got a clue about custom content besides how to put contributors haks in the game. I read all the stuff on this sticky and other threads and think: smeg, what are they *talking* about?
So what I'd like some help with is where do you actually start with all this? I've received such pearls of wisdom like "go find some tutorials" and "just experiment" and "use gmax". Huh?
But seriously, instead of being told to find some tutorials, can someone give me a link or something? I really envy people who can make a model to make up for something they found missing in the game, and being at the whim of all the (talented) people at nwvault tO see if there's anything I fancy downloading. I'm really competent at playing the game but as far as custom is concened I'm a complete dunce.
I just need some guidance. Please help!
  Profile: Tasden   Send Message To: Tasden
SBird
Game Owner
Profile: SBirdNWN
NWN: SoU


Joined: 15 Jun 2003
From: Seattle, WA
Posted: Saturday, 24 January 2004 11:09PM
The modelling section is a bit thin to get started from scratch but Elegio's custom content guide:
Click Here
is about the best place to start to get familiarized with the various bits and pieces and terminology of custom content.
  Profile: SBird   Send Message To: SBird
yourNameIs
Game Owner
Profile: yourNameIsNWN


Joined: 20 Jan 2004
Posted: Tuesday, 27 January 2004 07:06PM
Is the animation constants hard coded in? Can I create a new animation constant and link it to a new animation name and animation?

Is the PC .mdl files hard coded in? Can I create a new model file that is custom dynamic, like the PC's file but has a different model file name so I can add animations to that new model file and not the regular PC file. Therefore not changing the PC files original animation. I tried creating new models, that are Name character_model but race isn't h, d, etc....All that does is create an error in game.

thanks
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Trelantris Balefyre
Game Owner
Profile: Trelantris BalefyreNWN
NWN: SoU
NWN: HotU


Joined: 31 Mar 2003
Posted: Monday, 08 March 2004 12:36AM
Hey, I have put some time in on the Help files, custom content 3.0, and Danmar's tutorials. And I can't seem to figure out how to copy keyframes. As I want the death loop to be the same at the begining and end, this would be very helpful (right now it kinda twitches when it's dead, hehe) Anyway, everything I've read says you can do this, but I've yet to see anything to tell you how to. I am using NWMAX 0.5 (Gmax) - (the DLA guys are my heros!)
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MechaOompaLoompa
Game Owner
Profile: MechaOompaLoompaNWN
NWN: SoU


Joined: 07 Mar 2004
Posted: Wednesday, 10 March 2004 08:03AM
ok i followed this:
Open the mod you want to use this .hak file in, then click Edit > Module Properties. In the window that appears select the advanced tab and then click the .hak section on the bottom. Select your hak you just created from the list. It will recompile the module at this point and check it for errors, including the .hak file. Now drop any standard creature into an area of your
module, right click it and select properties. In the basics tab there is a rollout called Appearance. Scroll down it to your model you created and select it. The creatures appearance in the viewport should change to that of the model you created. Now changing the creatures statistic, abilities and details to match your new monster and your set. Start up the mod and go find a new friend to play with.
except one thing: in the advanced tab there is no .hak section at the bottom. all thats listed is Minutes/Hour, Dawn start time dusk start time starting month starting day starting hour starting year xp scale starting movie and variables. the uber-complexity of the the process of doing ANYTHING ive wanted to do with this game is really getting to me, ive been toying with it for nearly a week now and i havent been able to figure anything out. ive given up the possibility of actually making a module ill settle for being able to use some of the myriad Models ive found on here instead of having basically the same few figures for all my characters, but even this is proving impossible. why is there no listing for INSTRUCTIONS on how to use any of this stuff? why did i have to believe the box when it said "a world without limits"? why cant i return this waste of my hard earned money and find a decent tabletop game? im not a programmer, i never wanted to be one. im a freaking storyteller. sorry to be so angry but its really frustrating and no one seems to give a crap about those of us who dont see the world in 1s and 0s. can anyone help or should i put this game on ebay???
  Profile: MechaOompaLoompa   Send Message To: MechaOompaLoompa
Monferrat
Game Owner
Profile: MonferratNWN
NWN: SoU
NWN: HotU


Joined: 09 Mar 2003
From: Fredonia
Posted: Monday, 12 July 2004 02:04AM
How to get the base model parts of a new player race to use their own PLT textures.

The problem: After going to the trouble of creating custom race models, creating new armor with NWArmory and finagling with hakpaks, one bug still afflicts custom races Ė they default to the human skin textures once armor is removed from them. This is a Bioware bug, one unfixed as of patch 1.62. Because custom races are not likely seen as a make-or-break issue for NWN functionality by Bioware, a variety of work-arounds have been cobbled together ranging from never removing armor to SetAppearance calls in game.

However, a method described on the Bioware Neverwinter Nights/Builders/Custom Content forum (total thread at Click Here) offers one solution to the problem. Itís not a complete solution, as it doesnít stop human skin colors appearing on individual armor pieces, but it does keep the basic model appropriately textured without armor.

Basically, since the game is so dead-set on defaulting to the human pltís, you are going to accommodate it by removing the first models of each part and replace them with one new custom mdl and a customized human plt. The key is to make a new set of models and plt's numbered in the 200 (or higher) range (e.g. pmp0_chestX where "X" is a number not in use by another custom race, somewhere in the 203 or higher range) to replace the models and pltís numbered 001 & 002 (e,g. pmp0_chest001) and use those for the custom race.

The method:

1. Create the custom race (for purposes of example named pmp0.mdl in this description) using modeling tools and churn out armor as appropriate (e.g. pmp0_belt001-157, pmp0bicepl001-157, etc., pmp0_armorname001-157), most likely using NWArmory.

2. Make a new set of models AND plt's suffixed with a 203 or higher number. The models must be prefixed with the custom race prefix (pmp0 in the example so far), and the plts prefixed with pmh0 and suffixed with the number in the 203 or higher number youíve selected. Weíll use 203 in this discussion for the parts, but youíll likely have to choose another one, to prevent conflicts with other custom races (see Rule 4. below.)

So a file named pmp0_chest203.mdl might actually read like so internally:
# model: pmp0_chest203
filedependancy pmp0_chest203.max
newmodel pmp0_chest203
setsupermodel pmp0_chest203 NULL
bitmap pmh0_chest203 (where this is your custom plt)

b. A side note: To use tga or dds textures, instead of plts, see Rule 5 below in the last section of this discussion. Otherwise, move on to step 3.

3. Now delete all model parts suffixed by a 001 or 002, except for shoulders, belts and heads. So, the example custom race has pmp0_bicepl models numbering 003 to somewhere around 157. It also has a pmp0_biceptl203 (and also have forearms 203, feet 203, etc.)

4. Load these files into your hakpak with appropriate .2daís and create the creature in the toolset using the creature wizard. By deleting the 001 & 003 models, you have removed these from the Appearance tab of the Creature Properties Window. But by inserting the models numbered 203, you have successfully added one option there for each part.

5. Start the toolset, add the hakpak and add your custom race to the game (remember to close and re-open the toolset after you add the hak and save to reset the module) using the Creature wizard. Now your options for each body part are 000 and 203 in the Appearance tab of the Creature Properties wizard in the toolset. Select 203 for the various armor pieces (all save shoulders, belts and heads as well as any static parts in your model.) The creature will default to your custom plt when armor is removed.

The rules (so far):

1. A player model part (chest, biceps, leg, etc.) will use the human PLT if the internal references reflect the model name. The models must be prefixed with the custom race designation (e.g. pmp0 in the discussion above), and the plts prefixed with pmh0 and suffixed with a 203 or higher number.

If the internals reflect a model name other than the one it's in (i.e. leave the human, elf, etc. in-game character races references in it), then it will first look for a dds file, then a tga if no dds is found. The dds or tga that it looks for is specified in the line starting with "bitmap". Please note, that a model with multiple parts can actually use multiple textures, each piece having a different tga (if you wanted).

2. Unfortunately, this is either one or the other. You cannot rename the internals and have it use a plt file named "mypetmonster.plt" Tga or dds only.

3. These rules also have another exception: Heads. Here, you can keep the internal references the same as the model and instead of using a human plt, these will look for a matching file name plt (i.e.: your pm+0_head001.plt). And if you rename the internals to something else, then you can use the above rules for a dds or tga texture.

4. Numbering anything above 200 is acceptable as long as there isn't already a player model using that number. For instance, many human skeleton pieces already use 200 and 201, plus 202 is in use for a custom race lizard man and 203 for a custom kobold race. So, new custom races should use different numbered part (203 or higher) due to the fact that the human plt 202 will be used. (Note: as of July 2004 other custom races planned for community use (some Maztica creatures) that will use 204 and 205 are also planned.)

Therefore making human 206 plts and creature pm?0_armorpiece206 models would be advised for the next race of models, then 207 for the next, and so on.
(Note: for HOTU owners -- the number 255 seems to hold the Pale Master bone appendage models, so avoid it.)

5. A side note: To use tga or dds textures, instead of plts, you need to make the .mdl fileís internal prefix references differ from the name of the file it is within.

a. Rename all the pmp0_armorname001 pieces (the base appearance without armor where you could have written in a appropriate creature texture on the bitmap line that letís call mypetmonster.tga) to pmp0_arrmorname203, except for shoulders, belts and heads.

If the internal references in the .mdl file reflect a model name other than the one it's in (i.e. pmh0_arrmorname203), then it will display the texture file listed in the bitmap row of the file (Neverwinter will first look for a dds file, then a tga if no dds is found specified in the line starting with "bitmap".)

b. So a file named pmp0_chest203.mdl might actually read like so internally:
#MAXMODEL ASCII
# model: pmh0_chest203
filedependancy pmh0_chest203.max
newmodel pmh0_chest203
setsupermodel pmh0_chest203 NULL
bitmap mypetmonster

c. Bonus side note: a model with multiple parts can actually use multiple textures, each piece having a different tga (if you wanted).

6. The last rule is to let the community know if you figure anything else out about the method, or if you see some place where community content is conflicting, as more custom races appear that use substitute pltís.

Edited By Monferrat on 07/12/04 02:07

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rranft
Game Owner
Profile: rranftNWN
NWN: SoU
NWN: HotU
SW: KotOR PC
NWN 2


Joined: 19 Feb 2002
From: Las Vegas
Posted: Wednesday, 14 July 2004 01:18AM
Quote: Posted 03/10/04 08:03:46 (GMT) by MechaOompaLoompa

except one thing: in the advanced tab there is no .hak section at the bottom.


Well, for .hak files you must look on the Custom Content tab of the Module Properties dialog. Can't miss it....

I'd advise getting a copy of the "Official Worldbuilder Guide" from Versus Books. It walks you through basic module creation and such. It's section on scripting is not awesome, but you can download Lilac Soul's script generator for that stuff.

For the record, I see the world in 1's and 0's. This tool's power is it's simplicity. I believe that after you get past the initial shock you will be able to tell amazing stories with this tool. Just look at some of the modules on the Vault for examples - some are far better than even the official content. Learning to use a tool isn't about 1's and 0's - it's about using a tool.

Relax, be calm, focus and you will see. It's easier than it looks.

Rich
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Darkane331
Game Owner
Profile: Darkane331NWN


Joined: 04 Aug 2006
Posted: Sunday, 06 August 2006 08:02PM
I for one would love to have yuan-ti as a race but im no good at making custom races and can't find the custom download, if anyone does know where to find it could you email it to me at net_nuta@hotmail.com
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