View Full Version : Tutorial: Creating Icons for New Customizable Player Class Parts

11-05-2003, 01:56 AM
This tutorial will help you create menu icons (that look just like the default ones) for
new customizable player class parts.

We assume that you're using Photoshop 7.0 with the PNG plugin installed, have the JKA
Modeling SDK installed, have Modview working, and have already set up your new skins
correctly. You can find the PNG plugin @

1. Open up the player class's model in Modview. Be SURE to NOT rotate the model at all.

2. Select the appropriate skin from the skin menu. You do this by opening up "==>
model.glm <==" (this button is on the left side of your screen), opening up the "Skins
available" and then double clicking on the skin you want.

4. Next, determine which animation you want the player to be in for the icon. Select the
correct animation, first sort the animation list by right-clicking the "Sequences ( From
.cfg file)" and then selecting "Sort by Name ( unchecked = sort by Frame # ). Next, search down the list and double-click on the animation you want. Here's a table of suggested animations...

Animations Used for Model Class Icons

3. Now, you're going to turn off (make invisible) all the model surfaces except for the
ones you want. You do this by navigating thru the "Surfaces" menu, right clicking on the
ones you want turned off and clicking either "Set status: OFF" (turn off only this
surface) or "Set status: OFF + NO DESCENDANTS" (turns off this surfaces and all surfaces
that are below it in the surface order. You'll not want to pick this option unless you're
sure you want to turn off everything "downwind" from this surface. For example, to turn
off the left arm and the left hand, you'd set "Set status: OFF + NO DESCENDANTS" for the
left arm). To see your handwork, just click on "==> model.glm <==".

4. At this point you should only see the surfaces you want an icon of (the head, the
torso, etc). Now, maximize modview's window and then click on the "Best fit to Screen"
button on the tool bar. It looks like a stick figure with arrows pointing away from it.

5. Save this to a screenshot file by selecting View->Screenshot to file or by pressing
SHIFT-C. This will save a screenshot to somewhere on your hard drive. On my system Modview
just puts the files in c:\.

6. Open up the file in Photoshop.

7. First off, you'll need to remove the Ravensoft copyright from the bottom of the
picture. Check your Photoshop tutorials on how to do this.

8. Now, resize the picture. Click on Image->Image Size. Set it up so that the height
will be 128 pixels high at 72 pixels/inch. Be sure that "Constrain Proportions is on. Press

9. Resize the width to the correct size. To do this, click on Image->Canvas Size. Set
the width to be 128 pixels wide and then press ok. there will be a warning message about
the canvas being smaller than the image, press Proceed.

10. You know have a choice. You can either have color selection on your icon or not.

If you decide to not use color selection, you can simply save your icon as a jpg.

If you want color selection, you need to add an alpha channel that covers everything EXCEPT
the areas that you want to change colors. Check a Photoshop tutorial on how to do this.
After you're done, save the file as a .png, make sure you have the "alpha channels" options
selected. For the smallest file size (Note that PNGs never have image loss), use "None"
for the Interlace and "Up" for the Filter.

In both cases the filename has to be icon_bodytype_skinnumber. Example: icon_head_a1.png.
Place the file in your model's directory.

11. You now have to create shaders for your icon. If you already have shader file you can
add to it, otherwise, create a .shader file in a /shaders directory in your work area.
Review the way Raven did it in the assets.pk3 for examples.

12. Open up your shader file and add a shader for your icon.

If you didn't do color selection use the following as a base:

map models/players/jedi_tf/icon_lower_e1

If you did do color selection use the following as a base:

map models/players/jedi_hoth/icon_lower_male
rgbGen identity
map models/players/jedi_hoth/icon_lower_male
rgbGen vertex

Note that you'll need to change the directory/filenames for it to work. You don't have to
list your file extensions.

13. That should be it. You can now pack things up and use them in the game.

11-11-2003, 08:08 PM
Great. Thanks razorace. :)

11-12-2003, 09:51 PM
Would you be interested in having some of your tutorials mirrored at Map-Review.com Razorace? Let me know if you're interested man :)

11-12-2003, 11:20 PM
Maybe, what sort of mirroring are you suggesting?

PM me about it.

11-14-2003, 04:37 PM
Hey Razorace, just to let you know I just had a go at PMing you but your inbox is full. I had the same thing a few weeks ago and it tooks me soooome time to clean it all out :)

11-14-2003, 06:34 PM
Fixed. sorry about that. It doesn't warn you until you're over the limit. Please resend.

12-22-2003, 06:13 AM
Hate to resurrect this, but I thought it smarter than starting a new topic, since these questions really belong here. I am using Photoshop 5.5, and I am trying to tweak a Twilek skin. I open up a PNG, and all I see is 1 layer, and RGB, Red, Green, Blue and Alpha under channels. The png only shows the clothes, and only white for the skin. Is my png plugin just too old, or am I doing something wrong? -- Does anyone know of a place to get an updated plugin for 5.5?

Also, I was looking through the players.shader file, and whas wondering what the following did:




12-22-2003, 06:36 AM
It's suppose to be one layer. :)

tutorial about shaders (http://www.qeradiant.com/manual/Q3AShader_Manual/)

12-22-2003, 06:53 AM
Okay, then that leads me to another question. If it's one layer, then how in the world do they mix it with the other half? I.E.> The Twi'lek head icons. 1 layer, face shows in RGB, but in the alpha, it's just black and white --- you don't see any jewelry on the tentacles or the lips or eyes. It's really confusing.

12-22-2003, 07:45 AM
The alpha determines what is tinted by the RGB color or not.

12-22-2003, 09:26 AM
I'm sorry, I know that much, I didn't explain myself clearly. Take for instance the Twilek tentacles. Any PNG's only have Jewelry on the RGB, and then the alpha determines skin color, so it's painted opposite the jewelry in the RGB. My question is, where do the 'dressed up' tentacles get their 'skin' from. I don't see the Twilek 'skin' when I open up the PNG, only the clothing and alpha.

12-22-2003, 09:49 AM
The Twi-Lek's skin is the green stuff that you see under the clothing.

12-22-2003, 02:39 PM
That's the thing, RA. I don't see the green stuff. For RGB I see clothes and white where the skin should be, then the alpha is normal. Do you think I need a new plugin?

12-22-2003, 09:42 PM
post a screenshot of what it looks like with your channel pallet open.

12-25-2003, 08:13 PM
I figured out the problem with the alpha channel thing -- well, sort of. What happens is the alpha applies itself automatically to the RGB channel, so where skin should be, I see white. I don't know how to remove that, though. I learned this by opening a PNG in picture viewer (where the alpha was applied), then in paint where is showed the actual RGB.

Now all I have to do is figure out how to make it so that the alpha doesn't automatically apply itself to PNGs.

12-25-2003, 09:54 PM
It's automatically applying the alpha channel? How do you know that?

Again, please post a screenshot. My guess is that you're probably just pressing the wrong buttons on the channel pallet.

12-27-2003, 11:45 AM
If you are using APS 7.0 then there might not be an "alpha" channel in the RGB section. At least this was the case with me (Targa, not PNG). That's the only way I've seen it automatically apply the alpha layer & personally, I prefer it that way with TGA but not PNG.

The reason why I don't prefer that with PNG is because what's supposed to be white/black is reversed with avatar icons than with skin textures.

Anyways, if that's the case with the alpha being applied automatically, you need the APS 7.01 plugin. Just ask RA or myself & we'll email it to you.

12-27-2003, 07:23 PM
Only problem with that is I'm using Photoshop 5.5. However, I did find a workaround. Paint opens just showing the RGB of a png, so if I need to edit one, I can open it in paint and in Photoshop at the same time, then paste over the old Photoshop RGB, and save as a tga.

-SE- madman
01-15-2006, 03:50 PM
Ive been doing modding of all this stuff for awhile, and I have NOT a clue how to open up a .glm in ModView. Im wondering if I installed it incorrectly or somthing. How the heck do you even make a .glm?

01-15-2006, 05:22 PM
What's the problem?