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what's the file type to create modded animations and fx?

FalkonSwiftbladeFalkonSwiftblade Member Posts: 51
edited September 2012 in General Modding
I know how to create fx or animations in 2d & 3d in some software packages such as photoshop, flash, after fx, & 3ds max, but I don't know what method is used in the bg games and would be interested in attempting to mod in some new magic or fire fx for fun. Anyone know what files are compatible or what limits I have? I don't have any xp in modding and wanna get my feet wet in this game.

Comments

  • SFischSFisch Member Posts: 59
    Well, animation files in the infinity engine are handled as BAM files. These are basically image sequences. Using a program like BAMWorkshop 2 and DLTCEP, you can import these into the game and use them as animations.

    Keep in mind some conventions, however.

    1. Infinity engine BAMs cannot have semi-transparent pixels. In fact, transparency is handled in such a way that the RGB color Green 150, Blue 150, Red 0 (a teal color) is transparent.
    2. BAMs follow a 256 color palette. Make sure you convert your image sequence to that palette (and save as a .bmp) before trying to import a sequence into BAMWorkshop or DLTCEP.
    3. I don't remember the exact size limitation of BAMs, but I am thinking it's around 350 x 350 pixels. BAMs cannot be any larger than that or they will crash the game.

    If you're confused about anything, let me know and I will try to answer best I can. Good luck!

    Links:

    BAMWorkshop 2 - http://www.baldursgatemods.com/forums/index.php?action=downloads;sa=view;down=69

    DLTCEP - http://www.gibberlings3.net/tools/dltcep.php

    FalkonSwiftbladebigdogchris
  • FalkonSwiftbladeFalkonSwiftblade Member Posts: 51
    that's very helpful thanks!

  • MilochMiloch Member Posts: 863
    SFisch said:

    1. Infinity engine BAMs cannot have semi-transparent pixels. In fact, transparency is handled in such a way that the RGB color Green 150, Blue 150, Red 0 (a teal color) is transparent.

    Not strictly true, @SFisch. According to the IESDP, "The transparency index is set to the first occurence of RGB(0,255,0). If RGB(0,255,0) does not exist in the palette then transparency index is set to 0" (in other words, the first entry in the palette).

    http://iesdp.gibberlings3.net/file_formats/ie_formats/bam_v1.htm
    3. I don't remember the exact size limitation of BAMs, but I am thinking it's around 350 x 350 pixels. BAMs cannot be any larger than that or they will crash the game.
    It's 256x256 also according to that page (and verified tests) at least in the BG2 engine. PS:T could handle larger BAMs - not sure about the other IE games. You can get around that for larger BAMs by splitting them into quarters (which is done for larger animations like the balor tanar'ri) or even ninths for dragons etc.

    Also, I would recommend BAM Workshop 1 instead of 2 as it is slightly less buggy. It is not an earlier version of the same program but a different program (there is even a fix by Erephine floating out there somewhere, not sure if it ever went public though).

  • SFischSFisch Member Posts: 59
    Very good to know! You learn something every day. I was basing my observations off from inventory BAM editing. It finally makes sense as to why all those GUI mos's have Green for their transparency fields..

  • Avenger_teambgAvenger_teambg Member, Developer Posts: 5,862
    For spell fx you also need to learn about .pro/.vvc creation. Also on IESDP.

  • FalkonSwiftbladeFalkonSwiftblade Member Posts: 51
    thanks guys, will be fun to try & put something together :)

  • FalkonSwiftbladeFalkonSwiftblade Member Posts: 51
    edited September 2012
    ps as I primarily work on a mac, is there options for me on this end? I can try to run bootcamp worst case.

  • MilochMiloch Member Posts: 863
    Well, you can do most of the work with any graphics program. Not sure if Near Infinity can assemble BAMs but it should run on a Mac. Also, BAM Batcher should, and can assemble basic BAMs (inventory, spell icons etc.) I could WeiFU it to do more complex ones, just haven't got around to it. Should work on Mac, haven't tested that though not having a Mac (I think other folks have though).

    http://www.shsforums.net/topic/42359-release-bam-batcher/

  • MethuselasMethuselas Member Posts: 23
    SFisch said:



    1. Infinity engine BAMs cannot have semi-transparent pixels. In fact, transparency is handled in such a way that the RGB color Green 150, Blue 150, Red 0 (a teal color) is transparent.

    So in other words, if you need something transparent, it has to be R0,G150,B150? Man, that kinda sucks. I hope they just allow for transparencies. It will make renders a lot easier.

    2. BAMs follow a 256 color palette. Make sure you convert your image sequence to that palette (and save as a .bmp) before trying to import a sequence into BAMWorkshop or DLTCEP.
    Is it using the True 8Bit 256 palette or does the color really matter? For example, if I wanted, could I have 256 shades of blue?


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