[OPTing] XWA OPT Editor

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[OPTing] XWA OPT Editor

JeremyaFr
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Post by JeremyaFr » Thu Jan 23, 2014 12:46 am

I have started to build a new opting tool.
XwaOptEditor.png
Download link:
https://ci.appveyor.com/project/JeremyA ... /artifacts
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Last edited by JeremyaFr on Thu Apr 25, 2019 4:10 pm, edited 5 times in total.

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Post by FBK » Thu Jan 23, 2014 10:35 am

I think you are doing a great work.

The question is.... Would it be easy to upgrade the present opts (from xwaupgrade) to the new texture limits?

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Post by Rasalas » Thu Jan 23, 2014 4:37 pm

JeremyaFr, is your tool for 64bit Windows versions only? I have XP SP3 32bit and get an error message ("XwaOptEditor.exe is not a valid Win32 application") when I'm trying to start the executable.

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Post by JeremyaFr » Thu Jan 23, 2014 5:23 pm

This tool works on Windows 32-bit or 64-bit with the .NET Framework 4.5 installed.

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Post by Rasalas » Thu Jan 23, 2014 6:24 pm

Oh, it's seems that .NET Framework won't install on XP since version 4.5. :nosmile:
Anyway, I installed your tool on my netbook (tiny screen, but has Windows 7 as OS) and it looks very promising so far. Are you open for suggestions and feature requests in this phase of development?
One thing I noticed: tiled textures aren't displayed correctly. For an example look at the original ISD opt, especially the trench section.

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Post by JeremyaFr » Thu Jan 23, 2014 9:09 pm

Rasalas wrote:Are you open for suggestions and feature requests in this phase of development?
Suggestions and feature requests are always welcome.

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Post by Rasalas » Thu Jan 23, 2014 11:23 pm

Probably a good start for thinking about features is to look at the drawbacks of OPTech.

The first thing that comes to my mind is the procedure to apply transparency and illumination to textures. 9 years ago its programmer considered a different method: by applying a 8bit grayscale bitmap as as mask, but no new version was ever realesed, afaik. More of this in this old topic: http://www.xwaupgrade.com/phpBB3008/vie ... f=9&t=4394

Another thing is how scaling of meshes is handled by OPTech. Imho its far more comfortable to select which axes are to be scaled and then enter a new size in meters on one axis and have the other(s) scaled accordingly.

Also a better Wavefront .obj importer would be nice. In OPTech you have to reassign your textures to the correct faces, which can be quiet annoying with more complex models.

Texturing should be dropped. There are plenty of specialized tools for that - no need to reinvent the wheel as long you can import textured models via .3ds, .obj. and perhaps Collada.

Another cool feature would be to have control over the shading by unwelding vertices based on the angle of neighboring faces. I guess XWA Opter (can be found on Darksaber's site under File Archive/Opt Editors) works this way, but under some circumstances it messes up the texture coordinates and it can only be applyed to an whole opt, not separate meshes.

Btw, I hope my wording ist't too confusing - my written English is quit bad.

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Post by Darksaber » Thu Jan 23, 2014 11:50 pm

Rasalas wrote:Texturing should be dropped. There are plenty of specialized tools for that - no need to reinvent the wheel as long you can import textured models via .3ds, .obj. and perhaps Collada.
Most people create models from scratch using different formats other that 3ds and obj, we just don't import already textured models!
Quiet a few of us use the dxf format.
That was the whole point of Ace_Dxf and Optech, so you could import a model, then texture it.

So Dropping the texturing feature would be a bloody stupid idea!!
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Post by Rasalas » Fri Jan 24, 2014 1:15 am

Darksaber wrote:Most people create models from scratch using different formats other that 3ds and obj, we just don't import already textured models!
I never claimed otherwise.
Darksaber wrote:Quiet a few of us use the dxf format.
Which can be imported without problems in free tools like Blender or LithUnwrap. Both are much more powerful texturing tools than OPTech or Ace_Dfx. Imho they are also easier to use, but that's a personal preference and therefore debatable. Well, OK, Blender is not that easy to use I have to admit. ;)
Darksaber wrote:That was the whole point of Ace_Dxf and Optech, so you could import a model, then texture it.
In the case of Ace_Dfx you are right because it was only possible to import dfx-models and there were no alternatives at that time afaik. But since OPTech can import already textured models (by itself as obj or by using 3ds to opz, as you know) the focus is on things other programs can't do, like adding hardpoints, engine glows and setting mesh types.
Darksaber wrote:So Dropping the texturing feature would be a bloody stupid idea!!
I think it's up to Jeremy to decide whether it is a "bloody stupid idea" or not.

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Post by Bman » Fri Jan 24, 2014 3:39 am

This great too. How about the best of both worlds ? Make it as flexible as possible. Maybe the ability to import models that are already textured and also the ability to texture and stitch them within this Opting program.

My request for developing this tool... It would be great if a user could zoom-in or out on any given specific face of a mesh by selecting it by clicking on that face (focus) for example. Then lock it and one can move around it's fixed location x,y,z. A face defined as 3 or 4 vertices. Then on a drop down menu or tool bar, open your folder containing the textured bitmap file(s) you want, select the whole bitmap or parts of that bitmap down to the individual pixel location you want to start with x,y (by zooming in/out on image) and then map that to a vertice on the face of the mesh you selected or an edge of a face (defined as the line between to vertices). So you basically have complete easy control of stitching the bitmap to fit exactly how you want it on the face. Also the ability to rotate the bitmap by individual degrees so one could rotate it on the face of mesh if the model had a odd angle on the hull before stitching it in place while you're zoomed out away from the mesh.

My other request is that the mesh(es) of the model would show faces that are already textured or not, and switch to wire-frame mode, and ability to easily replace existing textures with new textures if you wanted.
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Post by Bman » Fri Jan 24, 2014 3:46 am

One more thought. If one assigns a bitmap to a given large face of a mesh, sometimes that texture might look stretched, and thus you lose the sharpness of the image, looking pixellated, or too smooth especially with 3D HW acceleration applied. So maybe the issue is the ability to scale the bitmap up or down by percentages on a face of a mesh. Or someone my have to change the size resolution of their bitmap image using their paint program.
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Post by General_Trageton » Sat Jan 25, 2014 11:09 pm

While I'm that there are far more advanced ways of textureing available today, I'm also still texturing in OPTech. That said, Dropping texturing I won't call as DS did, but I'd still greatly disapprove.
Talking about Texturing. ACE_DXF had a feature where you could rotate textures per degree, not just rectangular and flipping. So far to add a texture to a rotated mesh Oned have to rotate the mesh to apply the texture and rotate it back. The result was that one had to recalculate all the normals after that to avoid shading errors. Should you add textureing I'd gladly see that old feature return.

Regarding the Alpha-mapping for illumination and opacity, I recall Troy saying that each additional map would be counted as an additional texture within the (utnil now) 100tex limit.

As for scaling, I wouldn't ommit the percentage scaling or rather, if one enters a certain measure in meters, add a checkbox or something to enable the selected parts to be scaled correctly in all dimensions.

Edit: I've taken a first look at the Editor, looks great so far. I greatly appreciate the 3D Viewer, that makes handling the model a lot easier (OPTech's viewer had 0% field depth which can be quite painfull to look at :)

I have a few hints and thoughts regarding visualization. Not sure what of those is already on you rtodo list but I'll post'em just away.
- you might want to add the options to show/hide Hardpoint Labels and Engine Glows
- Also, would it be possible to display HPs in according colors, i.e. Imperial Lasers Green, Rebel Lasers Red, Ions Blue, Missiles Brownish and everything else grey or something? That would help to quickly identify a hardpoint.
- A Wireframe view would be good, an optional WF/Solid hybrid would be awesome :)
- Once illumination is integrated, will it be previewable in the model window?
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General_Trageton

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Post by General_Trageton » Sat Jan 25, 2014 11:56 pm

Hmm, There seems to be an issue with the texturing in the 3D view. some of the textures are displayed incorrectly. The odd thing is it only affects one or maybe a few textures while the rest remains fine.

Edit: It seems to happen, if a texture is applied over several meshes.

Here's a comparison:
Top: XWA OPT Editor
Bottom: OPT GL Viewer
Comparison.jpg
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Post by General_Trageton » Sun Jan 26, 2014 12:06 am

Got something else: As you can see that Toscan Fighter has transparent window. (Exterior model)
transparency.jpg
First thing: Great to see the transparentcy is applied.
But: I am missing the cockpit, you can see right through to the back of the ship.

Now though, it get's crazy: Zooming in further ...
cockpit.jpg
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Post by Darksaber » Sun Jan 26, 2014 12:45 am

I'm not going to apologise to Rasalas, I would sooner keep the texturing, if people wish to import an already textured model it's up to them.
Dropping the texturing altogether just does not make sense to me, removing this option is just defeating the whole point of the program!

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Anyhow I have a few suggestions of my own and they ARE related to texturing.

I'll concur with GT regarding texture rotation,

Here's and image of what he's on about (top half of image)
Untitled-1.jpg
The bottom half of the image, is to do with Tiling, in Optech you can only tile a texture in multiples of 4, but with the old Ace_Dxf you could input the number of time you wanted it tiling, plus you could either tile on a horizontal or vertical plain or both, please include this feature I really miss it.

Another feature I miss with Ace_Dxf was the short cut keys for next or previous face,
N = Next
P = Previous

Pressing Space selected the face, very useful and fast for texturing, where as in optech you have to manually select each face from the face list, which can be very time consuming.
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Post by Bman » Sun Jan 26, 2014 7:37 am

DS, following up on your last post. Would it be a good idea also, to have the ability to select a group of faces or all faces for a given mesh to apply a specific bitmap file ? I don't mean necessarily stretching a bitmap file over multiple faces, but maybe using the same bitmap file cloned on each face separately to save time? Like color on a ship hull. I'm not too familiar with the two existing opt tools, just curious if it already existed.

Jeremy, maybe take all the desirable working features from OpTech and Ace_Dxf and make them better and add more features. If you can improve the GUI interface so it's more efficient, more powerful, and user friendly--dumbed down for the rest of us novice users, that would speed up the learning curve for using your program and we might get more contributions from the community. :-) Another thought, maybe include a separate optional-basic module where a user can model new craft from scratch, if someone didn't have an external 3d modelling program to import. A lot to ask, but just an idea for now.

GT, regarding your toscan pics above, have you manually tried applying your own 32-bit color bitmap files from scratch using your paint program, Optech, then hex editing your offsets in XwingAlliance.exe file ? That might be a workaround for now. Has anyone tested a high-colored opt file in-game yet ? Something simple like a cube ?
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Post by General_Trageton » Sun Jan 26, 2014 8:32 am

No that toscan is an unaltered 8bit original as it's been released. I haven't gotten around to testing the 32bit features yet.

@DS, not sure, I might've misunderstood you regarding face selection, but you do know that you can select groups of faces from the list by holding shift, right? ;)

Oh and I concur regarding tiling. That feature would spare me a lot of time and headache!
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Post by Darksaber » Sun Jan 26, 2014 11:24 am

Bman wrote:DS, following up on your last post. Would it be a good idea also, to have the ability to select a group of faces or all faces for a given mesh to apply a specific bitmap file ?
Bman I believe you can already do that
Bman wrote:I don't mean necessarily stretching a bitmap file over multiple faces, but maybe using the same bitmap file cloned on each face separately to save time? Like color on a ship hull. I'm not too familiar with the two existing opt tools, just curious if it already existed.
I'm not sure I understand what you mean about this question
General_Trageton wrote:@DS, not sure, I might've misunderstood you regarding face selection, but you do know that you can select groups of faces from the list by holding shift, right? ;)
Yeah I know you can select shift mate :) I just thought it might be easier to assign shortcut keys, so you could use a keyboard, instead of messing about with the mouse all the time, but I'm not sure the shortcut key idea would work, because in Ace_Dxf you could only select one mesh at a time then go to face mode, whereas on Optech you can select all the meshes (if you wish) then to face mode. It's just a bit laborious using the mouse all the time, plus if you make a mistake and take you finger off the shift key then select another face, you loose what you have selected previously, so you have to start all over again.

And I agree the scaling needs to be addressed, at the moment in Optech you can only scale by percentage, but you have to alter each axis individually, where as on Ace_Dxf, you have check boxes you can select for each axis, plus you can scale in either percentage or meters

Like this image
Untitled-2.jpg
GT that a good idea regarding the Hardpoint colours, but one adjustment I would like to alter about that is, when you've actually selected a hardpoint, you can see that it has been selected, I don't know.. by perhaps highlighting the selected hardpoint like this
Untitled-3.jpg
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Post by JeremyaFr » Sun Jan 26, 2014 1:02 pm

First, thanks for all yours messages.

Planned features:
  • viewing models
  • editing models (meshes informations, lods, hardpoints, engine glows)
  • editing geometry: scaling, translation, rotation, faces moving between meshes, merging, splitting
  • importing/exporting textures: color map, alpha map, mipmaps, illumination (light map)
  • importing/exporting textured models
  • importing untextured models
  • texturing models, uv mapping
I prefer doing well things related to the game engine before doing others things.

On the TODO list for today:
  • correct various bugs
  • allow reordering of meshes and lods
  • add a checkbox to show/hide hardpoints
  • add a checkbox to show/hide engine glows
  • display hardpoints with different colors based on the type
  • highlight selected hardpoint
  • highlight selected engine glow
  • add wireframe display mode

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Post by General_Trageton » Sun Jan 26, 2014 2:31 pm

Sweetz :)
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Post by Bman » Sun Jan 26, 2014 5:46 pm

Great Jeremya. DS sorry, disregard my post. I now realize every face has to have it's own bitmap file stitched to it. :-)
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Post by JeremyaFr » Mon Jan 27, 2014 12:00 am

Here is a new release.

corrected bugs:
  • texture mapping
  • depth sorting
  • various bugs
toscan.jpg
added:
  • a help window with the commands of the viewer
  • reordering of meshes and lods
  • a checkbox to show/hide hardpoints
  • a checkbox to show/hide engine glows
  • display hardpoints with different colors based on the type
AssaultGunboat.jpg
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Post by Marcos_Edson » Mon Jan 27, 2014 2:16 am

Amazing! :)
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Post by JeremyaFr » Thu Jan 30, 2014 12:07 am

A small update:
added:
  • highlight selected hardpoint
  • highlight selected engine glow
xwing.jpg
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Post by Bman » Sun Feb 02, 2014 8:19 pm

Jeremya, looks great. I'm getting the same error Rasalas has. Looks like Microsoft's .Net Framework 4.5... package does not support Windows XP Pro SP3 32bit/64bit operating system. Is there a way you could also port your code back and recompile to work under the .Net Framework 4.0 platform ? Or compile under another programming language that supports 32-bit and 64-bit Windows XP operating system ?
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