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volume 1, issue 39

Today in loonygames:

New!! The Archives have been cleaned up, fead links fixed, and printable versions restored! Also, don't miss the new comments on the front page!

Livin' With The Sims: theAntiELVIS explores the wild and wacky world that is Will Wright's The Sims, asking the inevitable quesiton, "is The Sims the first step toward a virtual life where everyone is Swedish?"

Pixel Obscura: Josh Vasquez on Omikron: The Nomad Soul.

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Thinking Outside the Box:
Q&A

By Paul "Villam" Steed

 

Will mod authors be able to customize the box?

No.

Will model authors be able to specify a size that is different from their own model?

No.

Will authors be able to define all sounds generated by a model? Example: footsteps, pain sounds, weapon switching sounds, etc.

I guess so. I'm the modeler animator remember?

Will animation specific sounds be available? Example: taunt sounds.

Yes. I'm fairly certain.

How is skin mapping handled? Do you use a specific tool to do this with?

Kenneth uses UView to lay out the UVWs after I hand the model over to him to skin.

In the levels released in the Q3test, there is several examples of animated graphics. Will this sort of animated skins be possible for the player models?

Shader capability applies to characters as well as brushes so the number of possibilities for animating textures is prodigious indeed. Keep in mind the more things you have going on the slower things will run.

Who's your favorite comic artist? Old school? New school?

He's kind of a hack now, but Frank Miller is my fave. Old school would have to be Barry Windsor Smith and new school would have to be Jason Pearson (when he works).

Can a model emit light? Example: when the player is quading, the shell emits a blue light into the scene. This effect is not written into the quad shader script, is this a hard coded element?

Light emission is a shader attribute. Shading attributes apply to models so yes, models can emit light.

Can a model have tags beyond the legs/torso/head/weapon tags? Can a model have multiple tags? Example: two weapon tags for two fisting action?

No. Head, Torso and Weapon tags are supported currently. I'm sure some clever mod author will rectify that, though.

What was the first object or scene you ever created in 3d?

An option screen for an aborted project while at Origin called 'Phoenix Force' in 3DS R1 in 1992. Then I built an F-16 the same year using an in-house editor called EOR which basically was a frequently crashing, 3d 'connect-the-dots' kinda program.

It has been assumed that a MAX plugin will be provided to the community for exporting to the md3 format. Is this true? If so, will it support versions 1x through 3x? Can you generally describe the process?

An exporter is waiting for me to try out if I ever get through this list of questions. The author of the tool will no doubt provide broad support for it across the plethora of versions. Currently I export the file as an ASCII with the frames specified in the time dialog box. I have a models.qdt text file I update and then run a model grabber on that ASCII file. Soon as I find out more on the exporter I'll let you know.

Will there be a Q3data released? If so, what native formats will it take as source files? Can you generally describe the process?

Art. We're discussing art. Max file - ASCII export - batch file - grabber - in the game.

Are any other tools besides the level editor planned for release?

I wasn't aware the level editor would be released. That area isn't in my purview.

Is there a direct correlation between the generic MAX units and the Q3 generic units? 1 to 1, 1 to 1.5, etc.

Yes, use centimeters. 10 centimeters equals aproximately 1 q3 foot.

In the Q3test1 level, there are several examples of what appear to be ornamental models in the level, most noticeably the hooded gargoyles on top of the columns in the quad area. Do these items start out as md3's? Can they have animations? Can the player interact with them, stand on/push/destroy/etc. them?

They are models that now react with light. They do not animate. They cannot be interacted with.

Have you ever enjoyed the charms of two young ladies at once?

Yes. The first time was while in high school when I couldn't make my mind up which girl I wanted to be with: girl A or her friend, girl B. I basically communicated that to them and they made the decision easy: Why not both? So I did. They made me an honorary lesbian and taught me the importance of the alphabet. Especially the leter M and O.

How many shaders can be applied to a single md3?

As far as I know, no limit.

Can shaders that are defined for a particular model be defined on a directory basis? This is meant so that a player model can keep all its relevant material and scripts within its own directory.

Currently all model shader info is in one or two files. I don't see why you couldn't specify shader info in specific files wherever you wanted.

 

- Paul Steed is a 3D artist for id Software. He's currently hard at work on Quake 3: Arena.

 

Credits: Thinking Outside the Box logo illustrated and is © 1999 Dan Zalkus. Thinking Outside the Box is © 1999 Paul Steed. All other content is © 1999 loonyboi productions. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited, so don't even try it. We've got really big guns, and we're ripped, baby.