In this thread I'll attempt to show you some tricks I use in Photoshop to create skins/textures for your weapon models and other 3D things from the Kotor game.
Allright, first tip.
Getting your UVW-map of your model into Photoshop.
For G-Max users this is very simple: Take a screenshot.
Start photoshop, create a new empty file and just paste (ctrl+V).
Use the Crop tool (C) and drag a box around the UVW-map.
Hit enter and all the garbage around it will be deleted, your file will also get resized automatically.
Now create another new file, set it to this size: 512x512 pixels or 256x256.
Then use the Movel Tool (V) to drag your UVW-map into the new file.
Now it will not fit good, to solve that hit Ctrl+T to activate the Transform tool.
You'll see these small squares at the edges, you can drag those around.
So use'em to make it fit, hit enter to confirm the changes and your done.
If you get a bit confused/ freak'n out on this tool hit Esc to exit it
Like that you won't get stuck
3Ds Max users:
First go the Edit window in the Unwrap UVW modifier.
There go to Tools => Render UVW Template.
You'll get a new window. In there set the Height and width to 512x512 or 256x256 pixels. Down below hit Render UVW template.
Again a window comes up showing you the render of the UVW. At the top left is a Disk icon. Hit that to save your UVW-map.
In the browsing window set it to a location you'll like it to be saved and set the file type, if you choose JPEG, you get an extra window again
In there its just to set the quality.
Thats it, you now have your UVW-map ready to be used in Photoshop/Gimp or Windows paint if you insist
Second tip: Blades
With this tip I want to show you how I do razor sharp nasty cutting blades xD
In this example I used a one of my own modelled weapons, which has this spinning blade, lovely.
Ofcourse I made a nice UVW-map using the steps from above.
Now start photoshop, go to File=> Open. Look up the UVW-map.
When that is open I go to the Layers palette. I grab and drag the Background layer, to the NEW icon, just next to the trashcan icon.
Like so you get an instant copy of that layer.
Now alter the modus of this copied layer to Screen. You'll find that at the top of the palette.
Good, to make our blade look like steel/ metal I downloaded a plain photo of... metal
So I opened it in photoshop, using the Move tool (V) I dragged it to my UVW-map:
Its to big, so using the Transform Tool ( Ctrl+T) I scaled it down.
I used the top left little squarre and holding down shift I just dragged.
Shift helps to keep it uniform, width & height are being kept the same scale compared to each other.
Once content with the size hit enter, if your not happy hit Esc to leave the Transform tool.
Okay, now I'm going to add the sharp edge of the blade. To that quickly and easly, I used the Pen tool (P)
Make sure it sets to Paths, you'll find that at the top left of your menu bars:
Then follow the shape of your blade, like so. Just click around to set a point and continue to set more points to create a shape like your blade.
You don't need to close your path, but since I got a round blade I'm going to close it
Now where going to setup our Brush (B)
Just right click anywhere on your map. You should get this handy menu:
Pick a brush with really soft edges, set it to a smaller size, I used 9 pixels.
You could use differant sizes, depending on your model really.
Might I suggest an alternative method for obtaining precise UV map guides for GMax users? It looks a bit convoluted, but it's relatively straight forward once you've done it a couple of times.
First, download UVMapper Classic from here. This is a standalone EXE (i.e. no installation required) that is free. It has limited functionality, but is fine for our purposes.
Then you'll need to download Xzzy's OBJ export script and the GrabListener utility from here (the "Renx OBJ Tools" link). Make a folder in GMax's \scripts directory and extract the tools there.
In GMax, do the following:
Change to the Utilities tab
Click the MAXScript button
Click the Open Listener button
In the Listener window that pops up, go to Edit->Clear All
Back in the MAXScript tab, click the Run Script button
In the file browser that pops up, navigate to the folder you just created and select xzzy_obj_tool.ms
In the Utilities drop-down menu, click on OBJ Import/Export
Under the section that appears, click the Export button
You'll see the Listener window fill with lots of co-ords. Wait until it finishes and then go to the directory you extracted the OBJ tools to and run GrabListener.exe It will pop up a save file window. Save your file with an OBJ extension
Run UVMapper.exe. Go to File->Load Model and navigate to your OBJ. You should now see the UV map. It will be stretched to fit the window, but don't worry.
Go to File->Save Texture Map. In the window that pops up, choose a resolution (the default should be 512x512) and save out a BMP of your UV map.
Open Photoshop or whatever editing program you are using and import the BMP. Make it the base layer and build your texture over the top of it.
A pictorial guide for the GMax component:
A note concerning multi-object GMax files. The OBJ script only exports a single mesh object at a time. If you have a multi-part model (like a body for instance) you'll have to join them all together into a single mesh before exporting. You should also delete any bones and helper objects if there are any. Just make sure you don't save the GMax file after you do that!