Spectral Paladin

  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

16 Neutral

About Spectral Paladin

  • Rank
  • Birthday January 1

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Not Telling
  1. The engine in C&C3 (SAGE) has nothing to do with the E:BFD engine. I have seen around a misconception that the latter was a precursor to former, but it is incorrect.
  2. A dust scout in Blender: Note the object list in the top right - this is the object tree from the xbf file (but flattened).
  3. December 15th marked 15 years since posting the topic “Emperor expansion pack” in Westwood's forums, the project which became known as the pioneering Kwisatz Haderach mod. I was very young then and not very mature and fled before it was all completed. One thing that got to me was having to watch helpless as others tried to crack the XBF format, the key to the models and so to a true expansion pack. This left me with the wish to return to the task numerous times, as my own computing skills increased. I have not really uncovered any more information than what was known back in 2002-03, which was already quite a lot actually. However, I believe that the viewer/exporter which was the product of those efforts has vast room for improvement. What follows is an outline of goals that in my opinion will conclusively resolve the XBF challenge - even though this will come 10+ years too late. Primary Goal A: Obj importer/exporter The obj format is virtually universal among 3D software - pretty much any of them can read it and many can export it. Thus converting to/from it opens up many possibilities to work with the models' geometry. The only caveat is that animations are not supported. What I propose and have worked on is a set of Python scripts that serve as command-line tools to import and export to this format. It is quick to develop in Python and the code can be easily adjusted. Specifically the goal can further be broken down into: • From XBF to obj - geometry only. This is complete (see screenshot below). I am happy to share the script after some cleaning up of the code. • From obj to XBF - the mirror image of the above. It is sufficient to add an equivalent write() for each read() • Texture support Primary Goal B: Collada importer/exporter Collada is a format created for the express purpose of sharing files across incompatible 3D software. The advantage over obj is support for animation. Thus, all Python scripts above should graduate to converting from/to Collada. Secondary goals/other possibilities Rather than convert to obj/collada, many 3D software tools allow the creation of plugins to support a format. In the case of Blender for example, these are written in Python and so it should be relatively simple to borrow code from the scripts above. Nonetheless, this is not a priority since pretty much any tool can work with obj and collada. It is also possible to write a viewer/editor specifically for XBF. The sole reason to do this is a better chance to fill out the last gaps in understanding the format. Otherwise, it is a waste of effort to reinvent the wheel. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ On the off chance someone has shared a similar fixation with XBF throughout the years, it would be fantastic if you would like to post about your progress so that efforts can be combined. I am very open to sharing my own code on a public repository, assuming there is interest. Though it would hardly be a surprise if everyone has long moved on.
  4. Sure, that would be interesting and informative. Just be sure not to share your secrets
  5. Just ran it through an emboss filter because I had grown tired of its color Sure am, of course. Could likely do a far better job with your ideas nowadays too But first things first: the screenie is viewing a xbf file from E:BFD, a job which the community never finished. A 15-year itch
  6. modding

    That looks pretty neat! Interesting, I knew that about E:BFD, but not dune2k. If you don't mind going on a tangent here, do you have any experience with the E:BFD files? Do you know if there's any overlap in their practices, in particular any insights into their formats that could be useful in Emperor?
  7. You mean like gameheaven? *playing around innocently*
  8. someone on youtube saying it was actually big news yesterday(?), but with no more details or evidence that anything is actually in the works, just more speculation: https://youtu.be/MDtTIKEWYTU?t=2m49s
  9. Not even concerned as much by Trump himself as much as his administration the attitudes that this result has validated
  10. Very happy to see that you have picked this up again (have been feeling guilty ever since evangelizing C++/SFML and the whole thing petered out!)
  11. *still hopes to make Kwisatz Haderach 3 one day*
  12. Only Edric or Wolf? I had a vote! and I did my duty! but it was not enough I try to see a good side: that maybe decentralization is better in some ways. Yes there are regrets, but there are also celebrations. I'm not sure whether the regrets are significant or just given more media attention.
  13. so.... you people broke Europe
  14. I like your avatar. Is RA++ on a public repository by any chance?
  15. oh Thanks though. Never was a fan of social media either, but it looks like they can be useful nowadays, to be informed, to promote the things one considers worthy and so on. You have doubtlessly insights into the industry that would be great to learn about.