[Tutorial] Converting Player Models from Mod-to-Mod

02-01-2004, 01:11 PM
Alright before the asshattery and flaming begins...

This tutorial outlines how to convert a player model from one mod to the other. I use Counter-Strike and Natural Selection in the tutorial because a tutorial for converting between the two mods was specifically requested in the Requests forum. Yes I know they arent exactly the most popular mods discussed on these forums, but the principles demonstrated in this tutorial can be applied to converting stuff to dod, wether it be from an older beta, or from another game.

Ok it took me about 2 hours to make this tutorial, and I've tried my best to make it as simple and understandable as humanly possible. This may not be the right way to do things, but this is how I do it, and it works fine.

Step 1: Scale and Pose the Model

-Click on the "Joints" tab. Make sure that the "Show Skeleton" box is checked. The skeleton looks like blue twigs.

-Use the "Select" tool to select all the little squares (called Vertexes) of the model you imported. Make sure that the "Ignore Backfaces" box is empty. The model should turn red, meaning all the vertexes are selected.

-Click on the "Scale" tool. Try to scale the model so that it'll fit the skeleton. Use the "Move" tool to get it into position. Try to align the torso as best as you can, we'll fix the arms and legs next.

-Now using the tools mentioned above, select parts of the arms or legs and try to follow the skeleton. You can use the "Rotate" tool to get the knees to bend. Rotate the whole leg forward, then rotate lower half of the leg (from the knee down) backwards, then rotate the feet so that they're level. Adjust the arms in the same way if necessary.

It should look something like this by now:

Save your work!

Step 2: Assigning Vertexes to Bones

This is the hardest and most time consuming part. Its mostly trial-and-error but sometimes you get lucky.

- To assign a vertex to a bone, make sure you're using the "Select" tool. Now click on the "Joints" tab and click on the "SelUnAssigned" button. The whole model should turn red.

**If it doesnt, you need to select each bone one-by-one and click on the "SelAssigned" button. Some vertexes should turn red. (Example: I click on Bip01 L Foot, "SelAssigned", and the head turns red, not the foot.) Now click on the "Clear" button a few times, and try "SelAssigned" again. If it worked, there won't be any vertexes that turn red. You need to do this for each bone.**

- Once all the bones are clear, you can start assigning some vertexes to them. Make sure that you're using the "Select" tool. We'll start with something easy, click on Bip01 L Foot, you can see the foot joint turn red. Using common sense, select the vertexes that you think should be part of the foot joint. Click "Assign". Voila, you have assigned some vertexes to Bip01 L Foot. To test it, deselect whatever you have selected (click anywhere in the 3 grey windows), then click on the bone, and finally click on "SelAssigned". The vertexes you assigned earlier should turn red.

*Tip: If you hold down the Shift key, whatever you select will be added to the current selection.

- Now go bone by bone and assign the rest of the vertexes in the same way. To make things easier, Save your file and import the NS model with Triangles and Skeleton. Then check which vertexes are assigned to what bones on that model. This gives you a general idea of how to assign your vertexes.

- When you're done, click on the "Joints" tab and click the "SelUnAssigned" button. If you missed some vertexes when you were assigning them, the missed ones will turn red.

Save your work!

Step 3: Testing

Now that you've done all that work assigning vertexes, you wanna see if it works right? Well rather than compile the whole model, we'll just test it in Milkshape.

- Import an NS animation. Click File->Import->Half-Life SMD then go find "crouch_idle.smd". A window will pop up, click yes.

- Click the "Animate" button in the bottom right corner of the screen. You'll see the 3d model change its pose. Look over the model while its posed. Check for anything weird.

- You'll probably need to tweak some of your vertex assignments. Click the "Animate" button again. The model should go back to its original pose. You can now tweak your vertex assignments. To check on the effects of your tweaking, just use the "Animate" button.

- You can also import other NS animations to check your work.

Once you're satisfied, and you're model looks somewhat human rather than a tomato that passed thru a cheese grader, Save your work!

Step 4: Compiling

Now I don't really want to go into compiling that much, so here's the gist of it.

- Make sure the model is in its original pose and NOT animated.

- Click File->Export->Half-Life SMD

- Overwrite the NS file that you got the NS skeleton from. In my case, the file is called "c_marine.smd". It'll ask if you want to replace it, click yes.

- A window pops up asking if its a Reference or a Sequence. Select Reference and click OK.

- Compile the model.

**How do I compile?**

- Copy all the decompiled stuff into a folder on your C: drive. Call the new folder "Model". Make sure you copy the texture files from the CS model into that directory, otherwise you'll get errors when you compile.

- Copy studiomdl.exe into C:\Model\
(If you dont have studiomdl.exe, you can find it on the dod forums)

- Go Start->Run-> type cmd

- Go to the root of your C: directory ( so that it looks like C:\> )

- Type cd\ model

- Type studiomdl nameofthefile.qc
In my case, the .qc file is called "c_marine.qc", so I would type studiomdl c_marine.qc

- If all goes well, you'll see it compile your model.

- When its done, you can find your finished model in C:\Model\

Congratulations you've just converted a model!

- John Doe 02/01/04

02-01-2004, 01:21 PM
I made a post earlier about taking a G.I. Joe mod from BF1942 and converting the models to DoD. I guess that a totaly different process?

02-01-2004, 02:08 PM
Not really, once you find a way to import the models into Milkshape, you follow the same process.

I'm looking into it right now. :)

02-01-2004, 02:26 PM
TY TY TY TY *french*

02-01-2004, 05:40 PM
I exported saving over the marine.smd and I got Error: Found vertex Invalid bone assignment, Model will not be exported!!!

Whats wrong/what do I do?

02-01-2004, 05:57 PM
Did you make sure that all of the vertexes are assigned (using "SelUnAssigned") ?

Because that error usually happens when you've missed a vertex.

02-01-2004, 08:05 PM
yep I push selunassigned and nothing becomes selected

02-01-2004, 08:10 PM

aren't you supposed to select the vertexes and click "assign" and to check which ones you assigned click "SelAssign"

02-02-2004, 09:27 AM

I went to each bone and assigned corrosponding verticies (Yes I cleared all bad stuff first)

then to check to see what I assigned clicked "selassigned" the right things turn red.

I did this for all.

Now when I go back and click "selunassigned" to make sure nothing is unassgined, nothing gets selected. All verticies are assinged.

Yet I get the error.

Say wha??????

02-02-2004, 12:04 PM
Lists the bones that you assigned vertexes to.

I used: pelvis, L thigh, L calf, L foot, R thigh, R calf, R foot, spine1, spine2, spine3, neck, head, L upperarm, L forearm, L hand, all the L fingers, R upperarm, R forearm, R hand, all the R fingers

Tell me if there's any additional bones that you assigned vertexes to.

02-02-2004, 02:54 PM
Another possibility is that you have an empty group in your scene, go to the groups tab and delete any groups that have no geometry.

02-02-2004, 03:04 PM
ehh I assigned verticies to every bone..'zat bad?

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