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SOASE 3dsmax importer and exporter tool - Updated for Rebellion

We don't need no stinkin' subtitle

By on February 8, 2008 10:44:48 AM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums

Stannum

Join Date 02/2006
+2

New (beta) exporter!

-Support for Rebellion and maybe older expansions.

-Exports to the BIN format. Imports both BIN and TXT models.

-Much, much more improved mesh processing.

-'Tangent map problems' fix. This was an error with vertex normals that weren't being flipped when the model was.

TODO:

-Add model flipping on export so modeling in max is more natural.

-Import points too, so far its just importing the mesh.

-Stuff?


New version:
http://janvanderweg.com/SOASE/SOASE_Rebellion.zip

Installation:

Extract contents of the zip, except the example model, to: ../3dsmax/scripts/

Like with the old tool, run 'SinsOfASolarEmpire_Rebellion.ms' from the utilities tab and it should appear in the dropdown box.

Model setup:

Mesh as normal. Multi material works by applying max materials to the faces you want them on.
I haven't put in any y axis = up correction stuff so ships should be pointing upwards. (check the example file)
Instead of dummies for points you'll have to apply a skin modifier and use bones. See below for more info.

Material setup:

The new model format requires 5 textures per material:
    Diffuse map  
    Data (specular, self illumination) map
    Normal map
    Displacement map
    Teamcolor map

From what I've seen so far, the last two maps (displacement and teamcolor) aren't used so you can leave them blank. The tool uses the material map name, not the assigned bitmap for export. Here's a table to see which 3dsmax map is used for what:

        SOASE material map                                         3dsmax material map
        DiffuseTextureFileName                                    diffusemap
        SelfIlluminationTextureFileName                     specularmap
        NormalTextureFileName                                   bumpmap
        DisplacementTextureFileName                        displacementmap
        TeamColorTextureFileName                              filtermap

Point setup:

Instead of dummy objects the script now uses bones. Create the bones with the correct orientation and place them where you want. Name them as required by the game. Apply a skin modifier to the ship object and add all the bones to it.

A word on normal maps:

Since the gamemesh processor takes smoothing groups into account when generating vertex normals you can use smoothing groups. If you're using smoothing groups make sure the utility you're using to bake normals also supports them.

What is GameMesh?:

GameMesh is a max object preprocessor that calculates pretty much anything about models. It supports overly complex model setups, multiple materials, bone hierarchies for animated models, etc. It even takes smoothing groups into account!

 

 

 

 

 

 

OLD STUFF:

 

Not sure if many of you use 3dsmax but I started writing a maxscript tool that will export/import BIN/TXT soase .mesh files

Should work with most max versions since this is a maxscript tool, not a compiled one.

Current version: 2.0a

Download link:
http://janvanderweg.com/SOASE/SOASE_Maxtoolv2.0a.zip

WHATS NEW:

Lots!....
I rewrote the mesh splitting algorithm into a semi-modular meshsplitting maxscript file, splitmesh.ms
It should be a lot faster now and it supports more features such as:
-Smoothing group support
-Multitexturing support
-Much faster (I think)

Readme:
http://janvanderweg.com/SOASE/index.html

OLD INFO, still might be usefull:

Obligatory pic:
http://janvanderweg.com/SOASE/soase_pic.jpg

Installation:
Unzip the contents of the zip into your 3dsmax\scripts\ directory.

To run the script:
-Goto the utilities tab (hammer icon on the right)
-In the utilities rollout click on MAXscript
-Click on run script
-Find the SINS_Tool.mzp file and run it
-In the utility dropdown box select SOASE Maxtool
-Click on import/export

Note:
Soase uses an Y-up system. This means:
Max y = above -y = down
Max z = forward -z = back
Max x = left -x = right

Adding points:
-Use dummy objects for points, rotate them so they face in the direction you want.
-Link them to the main object. If you don't link them they will not be exported.

Materials:
-Diffuse texture uses the diffuse slot (really)
-Data texture uses the specularlevel slot
-Normal texture uses the bump slot
-Set the glossiness with the glossiness controller in the specular highlights area

Add a bitmap to each slot but don't point to an image file. Instead change the slot name to the filename:



Your final texture should look like this:

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March 27, 2008 12:27:26 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
So can some one please give me a step by step for the textures(materials) I took the kol, made it twice as big, got the dummys to link and added textures(not sure if i did it right) then I was able to export it into the game, the game load and ran then I built the ship and the same thing keeps happening, It comes out black, had it debug and it showed that the files where the correct textures, but they didnt appear in game, yes I moved the textures over to the mod, also wich is wich, is the bump the nm.dds or is it the cl.dds for the tech battleship textures.
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March 27, 2008 4:21:49 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
dude I think you need to read Major Stress's post on textures.

http://forums.sinsofasolarempire.com/162482

Sounds to me like your diffuse map isn't getting applied or you are missing the alpha channel off your dds textures.
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March 27, 2008 4:26:02 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Thanx bigbang, now i know what the diffrent files are, now then i got to the materials, click on maps then i drag the texture to each one?*(I have to do that because if i dont then i cant get to that next screen) so what my real prob is that i can seem to figure out how to actauly add the materials, I can drag the set up(grey ball) on to my ship and it will be there but then I export it and ingame they dont show up. I will prolly figure this out,

Materials:
-Diffuse texture uses the diffuse slot (really)
-Data texture uses the specularlevel slot
-Normal texture uses the bump slot
-Set the glossiness with the glossiness controller in the specular highlights area

Add a bitmap to each slot but don't point to an image file. Instead change the slot name to the filename: WHAT EXACTLY DO YOU MEAN ON THIS PART? Do you drag the texture to each box or when u click on it it brings up the menu screen with the diffrent bumps and then i hit cancel and get lost because they still show up as none

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March 28, 2008 6:48:54 AM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
What he is saying is that when you assign the texture in the Max materials editor the most important part is to correctly name the sub material to reflect the name of the .dds file in the textures game directory rather than assigning a bitmap to make it look right in Max.

I believe this is because when the SoaSE compatible mesh is created the format requires these names in the first few lines. Have a look at a mesh from the reference in the beta mod tools and you will see what I mean.

This is how I see it working, if I have it wrong then someone please jump in and set me straight.
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March 28, 2008 7:22:07 AM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Is there a similar tool to import models from Maya
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March 28, 2008 11:08:23 AM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Ok so, I add the materials by clicking on maps, then I click on the button for the specular first, now I pick bitmap, then i do not point it to a file but just replace the name. When I do that and I export into the game the mesh still does not show up.
(Yes I do drag the texture over to the mesh)

So what am I missing, I put the texture all under default one, is that where I am messing up?
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April 2, 2008 5:02:29 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Ok so I made a block, applied a texture to it, and exported it. When I loaded the mod in game, as soon as I make the ship, the game crashes. Why is it doing this? Do I need to have certain points attached to it? And how do you apply a UVW map?
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April 5, 2008 8:56:12 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
when i try to export mesh it says "Multiple objects selected, please select 1 object"
I was impoting a TEC Light Frigate and immediatly exporting
So i linked all Objects at the ship mesh, selected only the ship mesh to export but i had another error in string
sMesh = SplitMesh()
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April 8, 2008 6:25:40 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
when i try to export mesh it says "Multiple objects selected, please select 1 object"I was impoting a TEC Light Frigate and immediatly exporting So i linked all Objects at the ship mesh, selected only the ship mesh to export but i had another error in stringsMesh = SplitMesh()


rerun the script and it will get rid of the error
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April 8, 2008 8:54:43 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
rerunning it doesn't seem to fix the error on max 8.

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April 9, 2008 7:38:53 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Done!


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April 9, 2008 7:41:50 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Double post
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April 11, 2008 11:23:22 AM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Hey Evil, try 1.0 rather than 2.0 and let me know if that does better for you
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April 12, 2008 1:52:28 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
A word of advice for anyone considering exporting a hi-poly model (i.e. 10k +) using this Max script tool.

Increase the heap/memory size for MaxScript in the preferences menu, the default of 7.5MB is way too low I guess because the memory arrays get quite large.

BTW does anyone know how to stop Max from paging to Virtual memory i.e. to use physical memory (other than removing the pagefile from Windoze)?
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April 12, 2008 2:16:06 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
This script doesn't seem to work on 3DS Max 5. I get a syntax error when I try to run the script the first time.

-- Syntax error: at ),, expected ]
-- In line: texture.v_diffuse=[1.0,1.0,1.0,1.0]
-- In file: mzp.run in package C:\3dsmax5\scripts\SINS_Tool.mzp
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April 12, 2008 6:03:26 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
I need multi texture support and proper smoothing groups, 1.0 works fine other than those two issues.
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April 14, 2008 3:49:29 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
HHHHMMMM, evil try using 3ds max to export to 3ds then use softimage to import and then export to xsi, i know its a lot of work but then you will be able to use the converter mod tool, i am still having issues resizing the BB's. The textures arent going threw on 2.0 so i think I am just gonna learn softimage and try it that way. let me know if you are able to do it that way, also if you want you can send me a model(small one) and I can give it a go.
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April 14, 2008 11:19:43 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Overthrow, I am going the XSI full route, basically I'm looking for a quick alternative to he XSI tool, currently everything is setup in max, so it requires all the shader setup in XSI to get things rolling (plus whatever other pipeline issues there are)
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April 15, 2008 11:45:18 AM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Well eville, good luck, i put the kol on the back burner for now, still trying to work out the ai and the bug lag with the new patches, if you guys need any help over there let me know
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April 16, 2008 2:47:00 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Hi, I have a problem.
I've made a fighter where want to replaced the original TEC fighter. And followed the instruction step by step. But in game appeared black! Seems didn't textured at all.
And the exported mesh file in binary, so i can't comfirm the problem.
Here is setting in max(Screenshot):

Here is modle in max(Screenshot)New to texture, it's ungly   :

Here is modle in game(Screenshot):

So, where is my problem? Or which step i'm wrong?
Thanks.
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April 16, 2008 3:26:21 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Hi, I have a problem.I've made a fighter where want to replaced the original TEC fighter. And followed the instruction step by step. But in game appeared black! Seems didn't textured at all.And the exported mesh file in binary, so i can't comfirm the problem.Here is setting in max(Screenshot):

This image has been resized. Click this bar to view the full image. The original image is sized 350x673 and weighs 107k.Here is modle in max(Screenshot)New to texture, it's ungly   :

This image has been resized. Click this bar to view the full image. The original image is sized 787x353 and weighs 116k.Here is modle in game(Screenshot):

This image has been resized. Click this bar to view the full image. The original image is sized 600x384 and weighs 80k.So, where is my problem? Or which step i'm wrong? Thanks.


Sorry.
I've known where is the problem.... I've understood bitmap just a name.
So, Deleted dds files rout, It's Okay Now.
Thanks!
Here is the new scout of TEC, aha.
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April 16, 2008 8:00:18 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
HammerSun, could you please um.............. WTF did you just say, IF YOU HAVE THE ANSWER TO OUR PROLEM PLEASE SAY IT SLOWLY AND CLEARLY FOR US TARDS
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April 16, 2008 8:05:56 PM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Wait do you mean you just put the name in there? not point it to a distenation? if so I am already doing that and it is still black.
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April 17, 2008 2:46:11 AM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Overthrow all you should need to do is name the sub material object of Diffuse & Specular Level maps the name of the texture you want to use thats what the screenshots show. You can also properly assign the texture by path & filename as well if you want to so you can see what it looks like in Max.

If you are doing that and its not working then there is something different about your setup, Stannium might be able to help if you can get hold of him.

@HammerSun : Which version of the export tool & Max did you use on that X3 ship?
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April 17, 2008 4:24:12 AM from Sins of a Solar Empire Forums Sins of a Solar Empire Forums
Overthrow all you should need to do is name the sub material object of Diffuse & Specular Level maps the name of the texture you want to use thats what the screenshots show. You can also properly assign the texture by path & filename as well if you want to so you can see what it looks like in Max. If you are doing that and its not working then there is something different about your setup, Stannium might be able to help if you can get hold of him.@HammerSun : Which version of the export tool & Max did you use on that X3 ship?



To import X3 ships to Max, I use doubleshadow's DBOX2 v1.9.
BTW, before import, use 'X3ModManage' extract .bob file and use 'X2BC' convert .bob to .bod files.

Wait do you mean you just put the name in there? not point it to a distenation? if so I am already doing that and it is still black.


Yep.
What i've done is following, wish can make a little help.
1.Only keep ONE texture and keep default.
2.Clear three maps, it should show 'none' now.
3.Then click the 'none' button, double click Bitmap which in right column.
4.Click cancel when ask you for file name.
5.Rename 'Map #1' to my dds file name.
6.ReExport.
7.lol!  
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