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Heroes Community > Heroes 4 - Lands of Axeoth > Thread: New Heroes IV Era! Making new resources!
Thread: New Heroes IV Era! Making new resources! This thread is 7 pages long: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 · «PREV / NEXT»
NimoStar
NimoStar


Promising
Famous Hero
Modding the Unmoddable
posted September 28, 2017 04:53 AM
Edited by NimoStar at 06:58, 28 Sep 2017.

YES! Preserve variation test with mist went as expected
As you can see, mist appears over buildings even (including animated ones like the Castle)




And the game seemingly reads arbitrary layer names from these files (Only background needs to be constant, apparently)

So, we can have town screen superior to H3 (cool weather, dust and stuff, plus all they can do like changing the place of buildings and the background pictures and the animations)
AND we can have terrain variations that work fine too, with these ambience effects partially or totally obscuring the "always the same" buildings (this also insludes adding moss, snow, sand, leaves, forest, ashes etc. to cover parts of building, by adding the bulding behind them)

Take that verriker (just a joke)

PS: There is just one inconvenient with this method: That for some dumb reason they counted as if these overlays are like "buildings" selectionwise. They don't appear selected, but the mist will block you from selecting a building where present (if we get the H4 source code, we could probably reprogram this). However, all buildings with utility can still be used from the parchment on the bottom of the town regardless. My reccomendation however is to leave some "holes" in the effect where important buildings may be selected; the mist or other overlay effects only block where they have any degree of transparency, but not zero (not present). Of course this woudn't (and isn't) a problem with "solid" overlays because unlike effects, they don't intend to cover the whole space.

PS2: The pictures are always imported in this sort of order. Position of layers in .ora file is unimportant, since the importer will re-arrange them according to alphabetical-reversed but alphanumeric-sequential patterns (meaning it orders from Z to A, but from 0 to 9).


PS3: Building Animations. You can use them overriding the still-frame buildings  (on the layout file) or add to them. This probably stems from the frames used. For example, Life mage guild is just an "addition". For this "additions" to work, I think the likely requisite  for it not to have a "Base" name frame (other anims have). Possibly in addition to that frame 000 be completely void. THis way, not only you can have mist on your townscreen, but also animated mist! (you will have to build something for it, though :V)


PS4: With renaming, you can probably use building animations for spells. THe reverse we already know works.

PS5: Unlike all other buildings, animations don't work on Prisons, or replacing (except the static image and position via the layout screen). Some patch or expansion made prisons always-built, just like the first stage of town hall (village hall), so the game doesn't "register" them to animate. (the prisons. The village hall is correctly programmed)

Anyways, where's our QPs from this thread?
:V
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Baronus
Baronus


Supreme Hero
posted September 28, 2017 02:41 PM

Inresting new screens I see. Of course mist is nice. Town screen must be nice. It must by only good look and thats all! I think good will be build new factions like conflux or citadel. And new units. But of course very big discovery to train. And good to know.

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trashid
trashid


Famous Hero
posted September 28, 2017 07:25 PM
Edited by trashid at 19:28, 28 Sep 2017.

This looks great! Thanks for sharing!

So can you tell me if the buildings can be moved on the screen? I saw their numerical locations in the H4ResHelper and it knows the compositions of the town screens. It reads them from somewhere.

Also, the layers like snow on the buildings would have to look good without the buildigs, because they would have to be already there, right?

If we did not care for the townscreen clicking then this enables color tinting on the buildings
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verriker
verriker


Honorable
Legendary Hero
Jonny Come Sometime
posted September 28, 2017 07:33 PM

NimoStar said:
Take that verriker (just a joke)


haha no by all means mate you kicked my ass, not only can you do a great set of overlays to properly adapt to all terrains with that (if you get around the selection issues) but also you've got a very nice screen edit there, I doff my Fedora of Heavenly Erwinlightenment to you on that my son cheers lol

OK now we must find a very talented 3D artist who is willing to be a slave and remake all six townscreens, I will look behind the sofa to see if I can find one lol
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NimoStar
NimoStar


Promising
Famous Hero
Modding the Unmoddable
posted September 28, 2017 08:57 PM
Edited by NimoStar at 21:06, 28 Sep 2017.

Quote:
Inresting new screens I see. Of course mist is nice. Town screen must be nice. It must by only good look and thats all! I think good will be build new factions like conflux or citadel. And new units. But of course very big discovery to train. And good to know.


Well all my towns are changed enpough that they can be considered "new" in a sense (replaced creature layout, changed creatures, stats ans magic, etc.) but they don't "feel" like it because I have been using the old graphics since we were stuck with them then (also the building abilities, but we are still stuck with them now...)

Although I must say I still like the Conflux and Bastion themes (conflux didn't get completely erased in H4 though, it just got "absorbed" into Preserve) an they are of course still interesting to mod - If we can get enough Bastion creatures, that is...

Quote:
This looks great! Thanks for sharing!

So can you tell me if the buildings can be moved on the screen? I saw their numerical locations in the H4ResHelper and it knows the compositions of the town screens. It reads them from somewhere.

Also, the layers like snow on the buildings would have to look good without the buildigs, because they would have to be already there, right?

If we did not care for the townscreen clicking then this enables color tinting on the buildings


Yes to all. It reads them from the very same file, position of layers is encoded both in the layer resource file and in the .ORA . Buildings must be on the layout file (with their positions and base static image), I just haven't managed to download the pre-extracted ones yet to test properly.

Well, they could be partially tinted even if you want to click them, just click on some part that sticks out. For example in my townscreen it's easy to click the town hall on the chimney :V - Mist-like effects (fog, sandstorm, snowstorm etc.) can also cover the bases of the buildings but not the tops, leaving them to be clicked. However as I described even a no-click townscreen is still functional (if not exactly comfortable) if you know how, so it would be up for each individual modder's criterium how to implement it.

Quote:

haha no by all means mate you kicked my ass, not only can you do a great set of overlays to properly adapt to all terrains with that (if you get around the selection issues) but also you've got a very nice screen edit there, I doff my Fedora of Heavenly Erwinlightenment to you on that my son cheers lol

OK now we must find a very talented 3D artist who is willing to be a slave and remake all six townscreens, I will look behind the sofa to see if I can find one lol


The screen edit was barely alpha really, I have a better one now. Part of the effect was achieved by tinting of the colors too (my screen is "colder" and more cian, etc).

But well thank you.
Well there are some nice free 3D assets that could be rendered, but for the moment I am going to release my next version without that many changes.

In the future however I plan for example to remake all six townscreens from scratch (not least because my towns are different) - probably from fantasy backgrounds, and free PNGs around the web as buildings, and adding some simple animations (3D is my nemesis, and that of my extremely old computers)

That will take me so much time however (not least because I am somewhat a perfectionist, I am still tweaking single points on creature stats over a year after my release...) that many of you will probably have made your own townscreens by then :V
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trashid
trashid


Famous Hero
posted September 28, 2017 09:11 PM

Just out of curiosity - it is possible to implement Heroes 3 townscreens now, right? It could be fun.
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Baronus
Baronus


Supreme Hero
posted September 28, 2017 09:56 PM

From citadel we have:
Hydra
Basilisk (gnasher)
We don have serpentfly, gorgone, lizards, wyvern but can be extracted from MM. I know its big work.
So first inferno and conflux. We have all units. At the end citadel. Inferno replaced death. Conflux nature.
...
HIII backs can be used... Good idea. In my mod I want to join HIII and IV and HIII back will be good solution! Must try.

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Karmakeld
Karmakeld


Famous Hero
posted September 28, 2017 11:09 PM
Edited by Karmakeld at 23:29, 28 Sep 2017.

Trashid, regarding layers before/after constructing buildings, you're right it would have to look good both before and after. You should also take into account level 2-4 dwellings share the same position, so any overlay will have to fit eg. both the Dragon Graveyard and the Temple of the Damned.
For obvious reason the original overlays aren't placed where buildings will appear.
As for H3 backgrounds, you just need to extract them, make sure the sizes fit the H4 screens and export as ora file. Then you can convert.
I will send Dalai/Max a pm asking where the placement is read. Chances are however, that NimoStar will likely locate this before I get an answer..

As for the jpg format, Dalai already posted a screen shot of the edited townscreens in HD, so nothing wrong there, but I could post/send them to you in eg. Tga format if you'd like. Photobucket ruined all my postings anyway, so...

Ps. Looking forward to seeing interesting new townscreen with overlays.

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trashid
trashid


Famous Hero
posted September 29, 2017 01:08 AM

Karmakeld said:
Trashid, regarding layers before/after constructing buildings, you're right it would have to look good both before and after. You should also take into account level 2-4 dwellings share the same position, so any overlay will have to fit eg. both the Dragon Graveyard and the Temple of the Damned.


This alone makes it rather impossible to create believable looking snow coverage of the buildings. Unless the 2-4 creature dwellings were set apart from each other.
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NimoStar
NimoStar


Promising
Famous Hero
Modding the Unmoddable
posted September 29, 2017 04:50 AM

Quote:
Trashid, regarding layers before/after constructing buildings, you're right it would have to look good both before and after. You should also take into account level 2-4 dwellings share the same position, so any overlay will have to fit eg. both the Dragon Graveyard and the Temple of the Damned.
For obvious reason the original overlays aren't placed where buildings will appear.

Quote:
This alone makes it rather impossible to create believable looking snow coverage of the buildings. Unless the 2-4 creature dwellings were set apart from each other.


Oh come on, stop it with the old thinking.

1- The old overlays DO appear where the buildings are. If you look at my screen you can see moss/tress (?) covering on the town hall, this is original overlay, this was their original purpose.

2- You can easily set those buildings apart as they are different layers on the Layout file...

***

Quote:
As for the jpg format, Dalai already posted a screen shot of the edited townscreens in HD, so nothing wrong there, but I could post/send them to you in eg. Tga format if you'd like. Photobucket ruined all my postings anyway, so...


It all depends, if you originally made them in .jpg, there's no quality gain saving them back in tga.
However it would be nice to have extended images. In any case, first I am trying to download the links you posted... still no luck, download fails because of my slow connection.
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Baronus
Baronus


Supreme Hero
posted September 29, 2017 09:34 AM

Yes better is indexed tga and you can compress it to 7z if you want make it small. jpg is very good for not so important pictures eg. selfies, covers, screenshots 90% quality jpg is the best ballance between compression and quality, better compression than 7z but you loss quality. Its little tinted. Of course you see it in zoom only but is better to have game resources in highest quality.
...

For mod minimalisation I think the best solution is paint backs fited to all present buildings. We dont need necessary make back and moving, fit all buildings to it. But reverse.

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trashid
trashid


Famous Hero
posted September 29, 2017 03:29 PM

NimoStar said:

Oh come on, stop it with the old thinking.

1- The old overlays DO appear where the buildings are. If you look at my screen you can see moss/tress (?) covering on the town hall, this is original overlay, this was their original purpose.



I know they do appear, what I am talking about is if we wanted to put some snow on the roofs of all buildings, the shape of it would have to: look good without the building, look good with dwelling 1, and look good with dwelling 2. So picking the right shape would be a hassle, especially with totally different looking buildings, like those of vampires and venom-spawns.
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NimoStar
NimoStar


Promising
Famous Hero
Modding the Unmoddable
posted September 29, 2017 11:54 PM
Edited by NimoStar at 23:56, 29 Sep 2017.

Quote:
the shape of it would have to: look good without the building, look good with dwelling 1, and look good with dwelling 2. So picking the right shape would be a hassle, especially with totally different looking buildings, like those of vampires and venom-spawns.


Again, how do I put it? Those buildings DO NOT HAVE TO BE IN THE SAME PLACE anymore. Open the Layout file. Export. Move the locations of the layers. Vampire Mansion and Venom Spawn pit can be in completely different locations.
(even if my mod doesn't even use Venom Spawn pit in Necropolis anymore, it's now in Dungeon)
You quoted point 1 but not point 2 where I was trying to explain precisely this...



Quote:

For mod minimalisation


Actually I thought of a new tecnique for mod minimization that unlike the"multiplication" works both in Download and in the Game File.

Add background to town Layers file, then it will always overwrite the background of normal town. Only one background this way (H3 mode) but easiest.

It is untested. A possibility is that this background has to be one of the two default buildings layer to display (Village Hall or Prison), which may affect the display of some other buildings.
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trashid
trashid


Famous Hero
posted September 30, 2017 12:50 PM
Edited by trashid at 12:52, 30 Sep 2017.

NimoStar said:

You quoted point 1 but not point 2 where I was trying to explain precisely this...


Yes, because point 2 seemed like a plan B. But thanks. So you were talking earlier about blizzards and sandstorms, but is it possible to animate the background layer files? Or should they be made more like a mist effect?


Edit: I guess this is what you meant by saying it has to be "constant" so nevermind
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NimoStar
NimoStar


Promising
Famous Hero
Modding the Unmoddable
posted October 01, 2017 03:10 AM

You cannot animate them on the background files.

But you can make it the Village Hall/Town Hall/City Hall which is always present, thus it would be animated (on a separate anim hall)

Alternatively have a nonanimated base and add animations with the buildings.
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Karmakeld
Karmakeld


Famous Hero
posted October 01, 2017 05:46 PM
Edited by Karmakeld at 17:49, 01 Oct 2017.

NimoStar said:
You cannot animate them on the background files.

But you can make it the Village Hall/Town Hall/City Hall which is always present, thus it would be animated (on a separate anim hall)

Alternatively have a nonanimated base and add animations with the buildings.


The last idea, could also serve as a solution to the above issue of shared placement. If you simply add the animated mist/storm or whatever on top of the buildings, you wouldn't have to worry about them fitting the other structure. But indeed there's quite a difference between making a snowcovered building and one where a sandstorm is passing by.
Now what would've been really cool, is if you could add sounds of chilling wind or buzzing bugs and toads to the swamp

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NimoStar
NimoStar


Promising
Famous Hero
Modding the Unmoddable
posted October 01, 2017 06:33 PM

I insist that the "solution to shared placement" is simply that there doens't have to be any shared placement...

But adding the animation with the buildings doesn't allows us to have different ones with the different enviroments.

So, it's cool for a "single townscreen" idea, but for multiple enviroments idea it has to be static - but it can have 256 degrees of opacity unlike H3 ones.
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Karmakeld
Karmakeld


Famous Hero
posted October 01, 2017 08:27 PM
Edited by Karmakeld at 20:49, 01 Oct 2017.

Oh yeah, my bad. For a moment I forget they all share the same layer for building placement.

EDIT:
I've upload the extended town screens I made for the HD mod here. The file is 175 MB big. It contains all 48 Original Backgrounds in tga format, 96 extended backgrounds (1920x963 and 1920x870) in jpg format as well as all foreground image as tga and town layouts (building images) in tga.

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trashid
trashid


Famous Hero
posted October 06, 2017 08:19 PM
Edited by trashid at 20:29, 06 Oct 2017.

Help me out guys, I wanted to put this image into the game, so I did theese steps:
- export a townscreen layer file from game (ora)
- put my image instead of the background one (nothing else changed)
- export as ora

When I try to import it into the h4resHelper, it crashes. Other exported (unchanged) townscreen files work fine (can be imported). Is there something obvious I am missing?



Also, has anyone had any luck in cracking those terrain files? The garrison battle terrains can be seen in the program, but not the other map ones.


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Karmakeld
Karmakeld


Famous Hero
posted October 06, 2017 08:59 PM
Edited by Karmakeld at 21:00, 06 Oct 2017.

Perhaps you encountered the issue nimostar mentioned here added extra byte
Try comparing the 2 in hexeditor and see if that's the issue.
Oh and very nice background btw.
Are you pasting the building areas into new images?

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