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Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#1 Old 21st Jul 2009 at 6:03 PM Last edited by RoguePilot : 8th Aug 2009 at 12:00 PM. Reason: New Technique
Tutorial. Texturing My Non-Default Mesh
****EDIT::
A new easier technique is available using CTU version 1.8.
You'll need to go to the end of the CTU thread to find the Beta 1.8 version

Copy one of my designs that uses my mesh to a working folder. We dont want to overwrite the original.

Open this with the CTU 1.8 (whatever the latest version is)

Delete all the designs except design 1. Replace all the stencils and textures you need to replace, set colours and then 'Save as' to a new filename.

This will maintain all the linking information to the custom mesh.

I will always provide a texture for my meshes so you should aways have a usable package with all of the links built in.

Problem: You will only need to do this next step for version 1.7
The current version (1.73) of CTU duplicates the instance from the original caspart, but this is a really easy one to fix.
Just open up the package in the latest version s3pe.
On the menu click on tools then click on FNV Hash.
In the dialog 'Text to Hash' box type in a unique string of letters, generally I use 'myfullrealname, myusername,date,timetothesecond' which should be pretty unique.
Calculate the Hash and copy the FNV64.
Close the box.
Double click the caspart.
In the instance box, paste the Hash, preserving the 0x at the beginning.
Close that box.
Save the package.

Job done.

No hex editing required. And soon to be no editing required at all. Go Delphy.
Much easier. ****






The Tutorial

What you will need.

CTU
s3pe
Hex editor (I use XVI32 )

What we will basically be doing is seting up a new CTU package based on a Maxis mesh, and then editing a part of that package to point to my mesh. I have provided details in my upload post.



First create a new project in CTU using the afBodySwimsuit_plunge body mesh.

Set all of the categories you need to set, and replace all of the textures as normal.

Before you save, scroll down the Designs/Other Details page until you get to the Mesh name, the daeFileName. Change this to afBodySwimsuit_edited.





Remember to COMMIT

Save the package as a sensible name and into an empty folder for convenience.

Now open up s3pe.

Open up your package with s3pe.

You should see your texture files with the group Type ID of 0x00B2D882 plus a file with the Type ID of 0x034AEECB.

The 0x034AEECB file is the CASPart.



Click on this and select export from the file menu. Navigate to your empty directory and save with the filename unchanged. S3PE needs the filename so it can recognise the file when we re-import it.

You should get a file in your project folder with the extension .caspart



You can leave S3PE open, but minimise it.

Open up your hex editor.

Open the caspart file.

You will see a lot of hex numbers on the left with some recognisable text on the right. The text corresponds to the ascii codes of the hex numbers.



The first part we want is near the bottom of the recognisable text.

Scroll down until you see the letters:

a.f.B.o.d.y.S.w.i.m.s.u.i.t._.p.l.u.n.g.e



Edit on the text side so that p.l.u.n.g.e reads as e.d.i.t.e.d



Next my mesh has an Instance ID of 0x0000000030E169C1 we need to change the Instance ID of the original mesh 0x0000000000637C8A to this.

The tricky bit is that the caspart file records this in reversed bytes, so what you are actually looking for is 8A 7C 63 00 for the original mesh.



You need only look in the last part of the file after all of the readable text, but a good hex editor will be able to find the string of hex numbers for you.



Once you have found it just type in C1 69 E1 30. Beware of the 00 in the original mesh, this is part of the number you have to change.



Save the file.

Thats it for hex editing.

Bring s3pe back up and select Import from the file menu.



Select the CASPart file we have just created and click open.

When the Resource Details page comes up it should contain all the references already, as long as you have retained the original filename.



Make sure replace duplicates is selected.

Click OK

You should now see a line through the original CASPart and a new CASPart with identical TGI's (Type,Group,Instance) to the old one.



Save the file.

Thats it.

Drop the file in your Mods folder and start up.



Once you have done this a few times you will find yourself going straight to the Maxis mesh ID without having to look.

Tip: If the design needs editing, you can avoid having to re-do all of this from scratch by having S3PE export the textures from your package, editing them as required and then re-importing them.

Happy modding.

Something, something, something, Darkside
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Mother Function
retired moderator
#2 Old 22nd Jul 2009 at 8:28 AM
I'm sure you answered this somewhere else but since your mesh has to be retextured (I think) does that mean it won't work with regular CAS clothes?

"Holy Shift! Check out the asymptotes on that mother function!"
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#3 Old 22nd Jul 2009 at 1:33 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by daluved1
I'm sure you answered this somewhere else but since your mesh has to be retextured (I think) does that mean it won't work with regular CAS clothes?


Its like a non-default mesh in TS2.

Remember the meshes were always provided with a few basic textures and then had to be re-textured by other modders.

What we can do is export the Maxis textures and then use those to re-apply to the new mesh. Remember this is a smooth full bodied mesh, (feeling thirsty ), so any clothing details will have to be made up by good art work.

New meshes based on a blend of Maxis and Lara are forthcoming.

I've been asked to make it as a default as well, but since it was only used for the swimsuits in the first place you would not get many new clothes and would be back at square one of having to texture it anyway.

Something, something, something, Darkside
Mother Function
retired moderator
#4 Old 22nd Jul 2009 at 6:44 PM
I try to avoid hex editing because it's icky but I like the mesh so I'll give it a shot!

"Holy Shift! Check out the asymptotes on that mother function!"
Test Subject
#5 Old 22nd Jul 2009 at 7:57 PM
Can you put that up for download?
Mother Function
retired moderator
#6 Old 22nd Jul 2009 at 8:54 PM
His mesh is already uploaded..

"Holy Shift! Check out the asymptotes on that mother function!"
Test Subject
#7 Old 23rd Jul 2009 at 12:11 AM Last edited by totally random : 23rd Jul 2009 at 12:12 AM. Reason: Bad grammar
Quote:
Originally Posted by totally random
Can you put that up for download?

I meant the shirt, I got stuck at the whole ID existance thingy ma-who
Test Subject
#8 Old 24th Jul 2009 at 1:16 AM
Thanks a lot! Because off you I am actually going to try this and then i am just going to get soo mad when sombody else uploads exatly what i am working on rigth before i am done! Arrrg! Or i am just not going to be able to do it and get mad because of that! I feel i am getting a litte mad just thinking about it!
Test Subject
DELETED POST
24th Jul 2009 at 4:45 AM
This message has been deleted by Raggborg.
Test Subject
#9 Old 24th Jul 2009 at 4:55 AM
Default Help me!
The only thing i have achieved is enabling the usual plunge swim suit as a non replacement in the everyday clothing category.
So far am less mad than i expected. I have never ever made anything for the sims and i realy coud use some information on what i have done wrong. I assume it was something about the textures because i didn`t understand that part at all. I am really sorry to be a bother and i am happy to have learned to make clothing show up as non replacements.
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#10 Old 24th Jul 2009 at 4:14 PM
Raggborg, everyone has to start somewhere.

If you could provide a few more details on what you have done so far maybe I can help.

I'll be away at the MotoGP races over the weekend so I may not be able to answer straight away.

By the way, I am having to look up this tutorial to link a texture, just like anyone else. :D

Something, something, something, Darkside
Test Subject
#11 Old 25th Jul 2009 at 9:02 AM
I have made the non defaut body shape show up in CAS wearing the black plunge swimsuit. I have read the tutorial to link textures but so far i havent had any luck. Got a little dizzy from reading to many tutorials and staying awake a little to long yesterday I think.
Thanks for the reply and have a nice weekend.
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#12 Old 25th Jul 2009 at 8:41 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raggborg
I have made the non defaut body shape show up in CAS wearing the black plunge swimsuit. I have read the tutorial to link textures but so far i havent had any luck. Got a little dizzy from reading to many tutorials and staying awake a little to long yesterday I think.
Thanks for the reply and have a nice weekend.


Hang on.
Thats right isn't it?
Do you still have the plunge swimsuit on the original mesh showing as well?
If so, well done.

Ok, what I think you have done is jumped ahead too far. You need to create a unique design which shows on the maxis mesh first. Make sure it looks ok and is showing on a seperate line in CAS. See the tutorial by Daluved1 on creating a new Base Texture (or Multiplier)

Then you link the caspart from that new design to the new mesh, which you have already done, but with an unchanged item.

You have actually done the hard technical part. You just need to do the hard arty part.

Something, something, something, Darkside
Test Subject
#13 Old 27th Jul 2009 at 12:23 PM
Yay!
I did it! Thank you so wery much! I made a super bugly shorts-top outfit based on the short lace dress. Perfect for somone making a sim of their big chested aunt without wanting to see all the wrong parts of her. My textures are still worth beeing ashamed of but I am progressing.
I am guessing that to make a skirt for this mesh I would need to edit your original bathing suit mesh. Am i right? If not i have to be doing somthing wrong.
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#14 Old 28th Jul 2009 at 12:58 PM
You could do that, if you were good at mesh editing.

A better starting point would be one of the formal full body outfits with skirt already built in.

Narrow the waist, slim down the hips a little and sympathetically enlarge the chest. Dont overdo it and watch that the mesh stays smooth.

Oddly enough a clothed mesh can be easier to work with, they tend to have less 'peaks and valleys' to worry about.

Something, something, something, Darkside
Field Researcher
#15 Old 31st Jul 2009 at 1:04 PM Last edited by maloekoegirl : 31st Jul 2009 at 1:16 PM.
Hi I followed this tutorial and it didn't work for me. I'm doing everything you said in this tutorial. example:

I'm using the plunge swimsuit as you mentioned changed the letters plunge to edited changed the hex numbers as you mentioned and altered the textures in Photoshop forehand. exporting and importing goes great but when I put my finished package in de mods/package folder in my directory all I see in cas is the new texture in a new row but not with your body mesh.

Any ideas?? Caus' I'm running out of mine...

PS I only edited the alpha texture just for the test
PS2 How can I find the hex numbers I have to change?
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#16 Old 2nd Aug 2009 at 8:34 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by maloekoegirl
Hi I followed this tutorial and it didn't work for me. I'm doing everything you said in this tutorial. example:

I'm using the plunge swimsuit as you mentioned changed the letters plunge to edited changed the hex numbers as you mentioned and altered the textures in Photoshop forehand. exporting and importing goes great but when I put my finished package in de mods/package folder in my directory all I see in cas is the new texture in a new row but not with your body mesh.

Any ideas?? Caus' I'm running out of mine...

PS I only edited the alpha texture just for the test
PS2 How can I find the hex numbers I have to change?


A new easier technique is available using CTU version 1.7.

Copy one of my designs that uses my mesh to a working folder. We dont want to overwrite the original.

Open this with the CTU 1.73xx.xxx (whatever the latest version is)

Delete all the designs except design 1. Replace all the stencils and textures you need to replace, set colours and then 'Save as' to a new filename.

This will maintain all the linking information to the custom mesh.

I will always provide a texture for my meshes so you should aways have a usable package with all of the links built in.

Problem: You will only need to do this next step until Delphy works his Voodoo and fixes this.
The current version (1.73) of CTU duplicates the instance from the original caspart, but this is a really easy one to fix.
Just open up the package in the latest version s3pe.
On the menu click on tools then click on FNV Hash.
In the dialog 'Text to Hash' box type in a unique string of letters, generally I use 'myfullrealname, myusername,date,timetothesecond' which should be pretty unique.
Calculate the Hash and copy the FNV64.
Close the box.
Double click the caspart.
In the instance box, paste the Hash, preserving the 0x at the beginning.
Close that box.
Save the package.

Job done.

No hex editing required. And soon to be no editing required at all. Go Delphy.
Much easier.

Something, something, something, Darkside
Test Subject
#17 Old 4th Aug 2009 at 5:19 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by RoguePilot
A new easier technique is available using CTU version 1.7.

Copy one of my designs that uses my mesh to a working folder. We dont want to overwrite the original.

Open this with the CTU 1.73xx.xxx (whatever the latest version is)

Delete all the designs except design 1. Replace all the stencils and textures you need to replace, set colours and then 'Save as' to a new filename.

This will maintain all the linking information to the custom mesh.

I will always provide a texture for my meshes so you should aways have a usable package with all of the links built in.

Problem: You will only need to do this next step until Delphy works his Voodoo and fixes this.
The current version (1.73) of CTU duplicates the instance from the original caspart, but this is a really easy one to fix.
Just open up the package in the latest version s3pe.
On the menu click on tools then click on FNV Hash.
In the dialog 'Text to Hash' box type in a unique string of letters, generally I use 'myfullrealname, myusername,date,timetothesecond' which should be pretty unique.
Calculate the Hash and copy the FNV64.
Close the box.
Double click the caspart.
In the instance box, paste the Hash, preserving the 0x at the beginning.
Close that box.
Save the package.

Job done.

No hex editing required. And soon to be no editing required at all. Go Delphy.
Much easier.


Ok...I'm going be completely honest...I'm lost like hell. I get the new technique about the 'no hex editing required' (mentioned above), but what I'm confused on is that is the hex editing tool that you mentioned even needed anymore??

I mean, I followed what your tut said and like Raggedborg I 'suppose' (I guess I can give cred to myself, though I'm not even completely sure....maybe I can test try another swimsuit style and see if I can change it to use your mesh) I got it right in showing the swimsuit with the Lara mesh as I did see it and could apply it in CAS. However, I have to admit that's as much as I have (frustrating) understood. Like Raggedborg and (to some extent) maloekoegirl, I'm completely not getting this 'texturing' thing. I tried reading the tut you suggested from Daluved1 on adding base texture that only served to confuse me more.

All I wanted to achieve in using the lara mesh--not to create something overly artsy or even new--is just to make it work with some of the current outfits, tops,etc in game. Please tell there's a easier explanation for this....

Sorry if sound completely lame, lol, but really I'm just seriously out of loop...this is my first time ever truly trying to mod something in any Sims game, so this whole process is absolutely overwhelming.

"If you wanna make the world better place...take a look at yourself and make that change." -- Man In the Mirror, Michael Jackson

Love ya always, R.I.P
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#18 Old 4th Aug 2009 at 6:12 PM
Hi GanjaQueen

I think some of the problem here is that people are trying to get to the top floor without walking up the first few flights of stairs.

Your best bet is to learn the simple stuff first. Follow the tutorials on using CTU, and I know its a long thread, but read all of Delphys CTU thread because most of the problems you will get are solved in there.

Daluved1 and others have written great tutorials on CTU so please use them. You may only wish to do simple things, but sometimes the way to do them can seem very complicated until you practice on other things a few times.

In principle, all of the clothes in the game are textures that have been applied to meshes. If you want to apply a texture from an item of clothing to a different mesh then you will basically need to find out what those textures are and re-apply them to the other mesh.
The problem here is that some textures only work with one type of mesh unless you edit them in some way. I can tell you now that any trousers mesh needs some creative editing to get it to work with an underwear mesh due to some gaps in the textures.

So here we are back to square one. Please learn to re-texture an EA mesh, and then how to do textures for any new mesh will become clear.

It may seem a long learning process, but it is worth it if you intend to do any modding.

Something, something, something, Darkside
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#19 Old 4th Aug 2009 at 6:47 PM
More in depth. Sometimes I find that knowing the theory behind a set of instructions, helps me understand those instructions. So here goes.

How everything is referred to by the game is Type number, Group number and Instance number. This is what we call the TGI. This has to be unique to each little resource the game uses.
A resource can be anything that the game will use, bitmap, 3d model, sound file, animation, text, logic script, whatever.
What the game does is gather all of the resources referred to by 'key resources' and combines them into a 'scene'. The scene is what you see happening.
What the modding community has done at great effort is identify what all those resources are, what they do, and how we can use them.

Specifically to clothing texturing.

The CTU produces a package file which contains a Caspart plus some DDS image files that are referred to by the Caspart. DDS is a graphics filetype used by 3d cards to to speed up image processing.
What the caspart does, is tell the game what textures, patterns and colours to apply to a specific mesh.
Each image file has its own TGI. Each texture image has it own TGI.
The pattern files are like casparts in that they are a set of references to images and colours. Each pattern has its own TGI.
The mesh is very complicated. What we call the 'mesh' is made up of at least three 3d models of the clothing item, plus three morphs for each of those 3d models, plus references to bump-maps, material settings and quite a bit of stuff that hasn't been identified yet.
It gets easier though, because we have a master reference file that refers to all of these called the 'Master Proxy'. The VPXY file. This has a TGI.
So the Caspart only needs to refer to this Proxy as the mesh, and this tells the game what textures to put on it and what the colours should be. The game then displays this on screen.

By adding your own custom textures (with their own TGI) to a package file, you can make a caspart refer to them and so create your own outfit based on that mesh. A texture is made up of graphics files layered on top of each other, each doing different things. Base texture is shading, Mask is colour regions, Specular is shininess, Ambient is local lighting, Stencil is a colour image, and Overlay is the top detail overlay.

The simplest way to use a caspart is to change the categorisation of a clothing item but change no textures. So you can set Jeans to show in formal as well as casual. This is contained in the caspart as well. A package file for this will contain only the caspart.

Thats the principle. You don't need to understand this but it helps to know, and can sometimes help you to understand why something is not working.

Something, something, something, Darkside
Test Subject
#20 Old 4th Aug 2009 at 6:49 PM Last edited by GanjaQueen : 4th Aug 2009 at 7:02 PM. Reason: wanted 2 add somthing
*sigh*....what can I? I guess I gotta be crazy, nuts for this game, because I'm going try to keep working at it, lol.

But let me ask you, are there any tuts similar to yours that does more of 'visual' approach to breaking down the texture applying part? Don't get me wrong, Daluved1's tut is fine, but I must admit I like your approach to combining the picture and written to really bring together me even remotely understand the 'technical' side. I think if I could find a tut similiar to that on the 'artsy' side, I know it'd be a lot clearer to me.

EDIT: thanks for a bit of that explanation, that does help a little bit more and you're right....my biggest obstacle for really nailing that art side of it I'm positive lies in the .dds creating and other similar things. I guess the frustrating part is not really knowing what to add and what to leave a lone, lol. For example, I managed to get to opening your plunge lara .dds in CS4....then I was just looking stuck on stupid because I kept thinking 'what the hell....how I'm suppose to turn this into (say) a dress??'

It's driving me crazy because I feel like there is a vague part deep in me that's close to seeing what I'm suppose to do, but I can't reach it....maybe I need a break and a strong drink.

"If you wanna make the world better place...take a look at yourself and make that change." -- Man In the Mirror, Michael Jackson

Love ya always, R.I.P
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#21 Old 4th Aug 2009 at 6:55 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by GanjaQueen
*sigh*....what can I? I guess I gotta be crazy, nuts for this game, because I'm going try to keep working at it, lol.

But let me ask you, are there any tuts similar to yours that does more of 'visual' approach to breaking down the texture applying part? Don't get me wrong, Daluved1's tut is fine, but I must admit I like your approach to combining the picture and written to really bring together me even remotely understand the 'technical' side. I think if I could find a tut similiar to that on the 'artsy' side, I know it'd be a lot clearer to me.


I have had so much interest in this that I think I will have to do a full set of tutorials on the whole meshing process.

The next time I produce something I will record a full step by step, pictures and text. I've got a long weekend coming up with not much to do so hopefully then

Please don't be discouraged, the technical people depend on the artists to take the tools they have created and produce something wonderful.
I'm more of a draughtsman than a creative artist, I can only produce what I observe. I am eager to see what a true artist can do with my meshes.

Something, something, something, Darkside
Test Subject
#22 Old 4th Aug 2009 at 7:14 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by RoguePilot
I have had so much interest in this that I think I will have to do a full set of tutorials on the whole meshing process.

The next time I produce something I will record a full step by step, pictures and text. I've got a long weekend coming up with not much to do so hopefully then

Please don't be discouraged, the technical people depend on the artists to take the tools they have created and produce something wonderful.
I'm more of a draughtsman than a creative artist, I can only produce what I observe. I am eager to see what a true artist can do with my meshes.


Well I won't say I'm a true artist by ANY MEANS, lol, but I have to admit your meshes--and I think many will agree--have given people the motivation to try....since less be honest most of us chicks do have a bit more curves (and boobs!!) than what EA got goin' on, lol.

I can't take it no more, hell I gotta have a go at something...even if it do look crazy busted.

I definitely look forward to seeing any new tuts you'd put out!

"If you wanna make the world better place...take a look at yourself and make that change." -- Man In the Mirror, Michael Jackson

Love ya always, R.I.P
Lab Assistant
#23 Old 5th Aug 2009 at 5:45 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by RoguePilot
I will record a full step by step, pictures and text.


This would be greatly helpful. I am an actual artist but when it comes to texturing my new (modified) shoe mesh I am completely lost. I have built completely new textures but in game they are stretched out where I have tugged and pulled on the mesh and are not lining up properly. I have read every tutorial I can find including TS2 UV mapping tutorials but just cannot figure it out.

I am assuming I need to "point" to my new textures, but even if I did this would'nt the stretching still appear? Am I right in thinking I need to UV map the modified mesh? If I try to use a mesh that is not listed in CTU (such as a TS2 mesh) I am even more dumb-founded. So yeah, my problem is after I have modified/created my mesh all the textures I try to use on it are stretched. Any thoughts?
Test Subject
#24 Old 13th Aug 2009 at 4:33 PM
Default 1.8 CTU version
sorry couldnt find 1.8 version can you help me please!
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#25 Old 14th Aug 2009 at 12:00 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by PsYcheee
sorry couldnt find 1.8 version can you help me please!


It's on page 38 of the CTU thread.

Something, something, something, Darkside
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