View Full Version : shiny armor texture

01-22-2004, 07:21 AM
is there any way to create the shiny effect that some armors have in .tga files? i am trying to make some new textures but all i can make is the usual non shiny colors. thanks in advance

Boba Rhett
01-22-2004, 07:31 AM
If I'm thinking of the correct thing you're talking about, that shineyness is put on in the game using shaders, isn't it?

01-22-2004, 07:37 AM
im not sure what you mean by shaders.

ill try to explain my question a little more.

say, im changing the texture file for the starting clothe to full black. when i load it, it will appear as a very dark black. no shinyness at all. however, there are some ingame official armor that is also black, but has the shiny effect thing. is it possible to create such effect for my custom made texture?

Fred Tetra
01-22-2004, 12:51 PM
I think Boba Rhett is correct; the "shiny-ness" is produced by the game's rendering engine and is probably specified in one of the files associated with the model, such as the mdx or mdl files.

One way to prove it would be to change the texture for the Selkath and see if they still look "wet" with your new texture.

Darth Stryke
01-22-2004, 01:10 PM
Effects like the slimyness and the shinyness are done by effects shaders. It is kinda like a clear texture that the game puts over the normal texture to give it that effect. I cannot explain it any better since I am not that good with shaders.

01-22-2004, 11:07 PM
so in other words, if i want to put that shiny effect, i have to edit the corresponding mdl or mdx file, and not on the .tga texture file? thanks again guys

01-22-2004, 11:09 PM
yes effects like this are produced by shaders. such effects can not possibly be saved in a texture file. if there are dark armors that look shiny, you would probably be better off using them for dark shiny armor. as i am pretty sure shaders are sometimes written specifically for their corresponding texture. you can try it and see, but effects of this nature are achieved by shaders. i know little about them other than their existence and their use.

Hell Kitty
01-24-2004, 06:41 AM
I noticed that when you reskin textures that have a gloss effect, you lose the gloss effect. I guess the tpc files contain information that the tga file cannot, as opposed to the gloss effect information being stored in some other file.

Even without editing the testure in Photoshop, simply renaming an existing texture (in tga format) removes the gloss, and results in something looking rather dull. :(

01-24-2004, 07:07 AM
really? because my small testing showed otherwise. i still got the shiny effect even after i changed it to .tga and even after i renamed it.

however, if i edit the .tga file using photopaint, even just for one pixel difference, i lost the shiny effect.

01-24-2004, 07:08 AM
Since tpc2tga does not extract txi data from the tpc resources (currently anyway), you'll need to extract it manually. If you open a tpc file in a hex editor, you'll note a bit of text at the end of the file (usually it's just "mipmap 0" but some textures have additional data for bump mapping, etc). Copy this out and save it in a file with the same name as your tga and the the extension 'txi'.

I haven't tested this, but it should work.

01-24-2004, 09:02 AM
probably im very wrong since it is your program, but i think tpc2tga retains the txi data somehow. my reasons: i converted a texture (N_Selkath01.tpc) into a .tga file (N_Selkath01.tga). I used this tga file and it still retains its glossy effect. Then i renamed this file into ABCDE.tga and used this newly renamed texture, and it still retains its glossy effect. Then i open this ABCDE.tga using photoshop, edited just a few pixel out of it and then saving it under the same name. it loses all the glossy effect.

next thing i tried, i open the original .tpc file (N-Selkath01.tpc)using hex editor and copied the last characters of the file (after the FF FF FF) and save this footer file into ABCDE.txi. I loaded the game, and still no glossy effect :confused:

maybe you know better whats happening here? :confused:

01-24-2004, 11:16 AM
TXI information is definitely not being extracted, there is no way to store it in a TGA file. However, I'm not quite sure how the game will handle overrides with separate tga/txi files. Try making a txi file with just the contents 'bumpyshinytexture CM_Bright' or something similar. There's also an envmap field in appearances.2da that may be affecting things, I'm not sure.

I'm sort of tired right now so I'm going to get some sleep and look at it again later.

P.S.: Shiny gizka ('bumpyshinytexture CM_Baremetal') are highly amusing when you're me and it's nearly 6AM =)

01-26-2004, 02:54 AM
after doing some more testings, i think i know how the shiny effect works now.

~It is stored in the model files (.mdl and .mdx)

~Some model is already shiny in nature (ex: armors in category H, selkath model, gizka model, etc)

~In order for a texture to be drawn as shiny, the texture has to have the fourth layer besides the RGB layer. The fourth layer is a greyscale layer, black means transparent, white means non transparent solid color. So if you want your whole texture to be fully shiny, the fourth layer has to be black throughout.

~As indicated above, the shiny-ness is stored in the model file, thus if the model is not shiny in the first place, if your texture's fourth layer is all black, then your model will be totally invisible since there is no shiny layer behind the texture. (example of such non shiny model is PFBAM model)

~.txi files does modify the appearance of the texture. example, when you use lma_water01b.txi, it will make the texture rotates around. As of for now, I can not find a command in .txi file that will make the non shiny model to appear shiny. I have tried "bumpyshiny texture CM_Baremetal" but it seems not working. Perhaps there is other command that i dont know yet that will make the shiny effect.

Correct me if im wrong.

Kitty Kitty
01-26-2004, 03:30 AM
What you've got there so far sounds right.

That "fourth layer" would be your alpha channel. It's often used sort of like you'd use a mask, where white means "show everything in this area of the image full intensity", black means "make this area of the image totally transparent" and any shade of grey being between the two.

However, the "transparent" behavior does change when using bumpmaps and the like.

Aaaanyways.. this would also help explain why the effect is lost when you save the file from photoshop. In order to keep an alpha channel, you first must select the "alpha channels" checkbox on the save as dialogue, and you must ALSO choose to save the image as a 32 bit TGA, NOT 24 bit. Often, the default is the exact opposite (24 bit file with no alpha information selected).


01-26-2004, 11:24 AM
Aaaanyways.. this would also help explain why the effect is lost when you save the file from photoshop. In order to keep an alpha channel, you first must select the "alpha channels" checkbox on the save as dialogue, and you must ALSO choose to save the image as a 32 bit TGA, NOT 24 bit. Often, the default is the exact opposite (24 bit file with no alpha information selected).

It's seems to me that PhotoShop changes the default from 32 bits/pixel to 24 bits/pixel when you use selections or masks, 'cause PhotoShop use channels to manage them, and when there are more than one 'hidden channel' (as the Alpha), PS doesn't know which is the right one.

01-26-2004, 06:16 PM
I tried saving a shiny texture (sith apprentices armor) after just drawing some lines on it in photoshop as a test, and it was still shiny in-game. :confused:

01-27-2004, 07:26 PM
It is possible....

Click this link: http://www.middle-earthonline.com/index.php?section=devblog_superscooper

Look at the part about the shield.
It looks like you would need to be a pro to do it.

01-27-2004, 11:21 PM
uhmmm.....i have had no problem retaining shader effects when working with tga's saved in photoshop. and photoshop prompted me when it came time to save as to what bit mode i wanted the file saved in. photoshop handles .png's horribly with it's native plug-in, but from my experience it handles tga's very well. i am hoping photoshop cs will clear up the .png issue.

Hell Kitty
01-29-2004, 12:10 PM
Yay for the community mod makers. Now that the shiny armour texture thing is sorted out, I can go play. :)


I modified Cassus Fett's armour. Not a fan of purple and green. Just a simple cut and paste and recolour job.