View Full Version : new here and need help please
18th Apr 2009, 12:45 PM
I have been a designer on the site IMVU for about 3 years now and have just recently started playing sims. I would love to design items for my game so my question is...can the things I designed for IMVU be transfered over to sims somehow? I use photoshop and have all my textures and and meshes etc. I have looked through the threads but and the FAQ and so forth but have had no luck. any help would be great. if this can be done I would be more than happy to upload my items to the site for others to use . I have a ton of them...lol
thanks in advance :)
18th Apr 2009, 1:13 PM
Well, basically, you're dealing with two related, but (in technical terms) separate things here. I'll address them separately.
I'm assuming you mean clothing type stuff. Sims 2 body meshes have their own skeleton and joint system, with "bone assignments" providing the animation - each vertex is weighted a certain amount to particular bones, so when those bones move, the vertex moves according to how much it is weighted to those bones. Most bodies have approximately 2000-2500 vertices, each with up to 4 assignments in different weights on them. While there is a plugin to give "basic assignments" to a body, it still requires a lot of hand-tweaking and adjusting to make those assignments "right" - thus it is much easier to modify an existing body/clothing mesh than to import a new one, as you already have the assignments in place.
Sims bodies are also in different pieces - mainly, the head is separate from the body itself, but separate clothings (like top/bottom) are also separate pieces. Seams where the parts meet need to match up properly. You also want the proportions of the body to look right - sims are shaped a certain way, IMVU characters another.
Because of all these factors (bone assignments, seams, proportions) it is likely better to modify Sims 2 clothing meshes so that they will resemble your IMVU ones. You can "frankenstein" pieces together to, say, get shoes from one outfit onto the skirt of another, and there's no real limit to the number of pieces you can stick together. If you just can't find the right piece to frankenstein or modify to work for you in the available outfits, making just that one piece is a lot easier than making the whole rest of the body.
Now, if you're talking hair, that's a whole 'nother ball of wax. They do still have to fit to the sim's head (especially around the "scalp" area) but they also have to be properly layered so that they display properly in game. And you have to do bone assignments for them too. People do make all-new, original hair meshes, but it is an advanced task (one of the most advanced things you can make) and thus not suitable for someone who is not already at least moderately familiar with the concepts involved in simpler stuff like clothing.
This part will likely be a lot easier, depending on how the clothing is mapped for IMVU. You'll want to take a look at some Sims 2 clothings - most of them are pretty much the same in terms of the basics of how they're mapped. I have no idea how IMVU models are mapped, but assuming they're roughly compatible, it would be a matter of copy-pasting and adjusting your textures to fit a Sims 2 body/clothing mesh.
My recommendation would be to start by looking at some of the basic tutorials - Faylen's clothing tutorials use Photoshop and while they are quite simple edits, they will give you an introduction into using Body Shop, and how Sims 2 textures are laid out and modified. If you're already experienced with 3D clothing, going through the tutorials should be a cinch. CatofEvilGenius has a tutorial on exporting UV maps so you can look at the maps for the meshes you're recolouring and see how compatible they are.
Then hop over to the Body Shop Meshing section and check out the beginner's meshing tutorials. Once you're through those (texturing, uv mapping, meshing) you should have a very good idea of how big a job transferring over your stuff will be.
18th Apr 2009, 6:51 PM
that is alot of help but I think I should have been better with how I worded my question so you would not have had to explain it in such detail. by the way, thank you very much for taking the time to type all of that :) From what I have seen so far both are almost the same, yes the IMVU skeletons "pieces"are a little different , i.e. one skeleton I saw for here had the feet on the bottom right corner where as IMVU places them in the center. just as here they are placed flat and you have to keep designing then try it on and then go back and tweek things so the seams and such line up correctly. I think the main thing I need to know is where to find the skeletons so I can place them in my pc and then work with them in photoshop then upload them to my game. Only reason I say photoshop is for one I know that program and would hate to scrap what i have learned there only to have to learn a whole new program. :blink:
18th Apr 2009, 7:25 PM
I think you're confusing skeletons and uv mapping. Skeletons are an actual part of the 3D setup, and make the whole thing move with animations. UV mapping is what tells it how to apply a flat texture to a 3D model. Look under CatofEvilGenius's profile here on MTS for a tutorial on exporting UV maps. Each different mesh will have a slightly different UV map. And yes, you can do just fine in Photoshop - you'll have to use some other programs too, to get it in game, but all that is explained in the tutorials. :)
19th Apr 2009, 12:59 PM
thanks a bunch. I have been reading through them ...guess I might have missed the info I was looking for or read it and just didn't know I did so back to read them again :blink:
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