DDS Textures

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MAVEN
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DDS Textures

I've been experimenting with the Swat Ed Swat 4 editor's Texture viewer lately.

So far, everything looks familiar and easy to understand, however I have one small problem.

When I try to export any DDS texture, Swat Ed does export the file, but no program, even CS5 with nVidia plugins can open it.

Is it possible to export DDS textures from vanilla archives and open them in CS5 for example? If yes, how?

I tried bunch of plugins, viewers, tools, nothing helped so far...

What I'm trying to do is alter some HUD elements properties such as color and transparency and see how it looks in-game.

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KeLLeR
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Last seen: 5 years 12 months ago

I worked many times with exported textures from swat to do the custom skins, this your problem sounds a bit weird to me because i never had problems opening DDS files in Photoshop, all you need is this plugin http://developer.nvidia.com/nvidia-texture-tools-adobe-photoshop to open this kind of files in photoshop.

Maybe you do a wrong installation of this plugin, because as far as i know, it's the only and working way to work on DDS files.

Anyway, the only way to change any texture in the game without having connections problems is including these new textures in a mod and even if you change the texture but leave the same name the editor will replace your edited texture with the default one if you try to close and open again the program.
The editor let you edit and create new textures for custom skins instead just because there is a dedicated class for that -> "Swat Custom Skin"

This is from my experience when me and franciswat tried to edit the weapons textures without creating a new folder in the mod directory.

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MAVEN
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dds

Thanks for the info, Keller.

So far, I've tried the nVidia plugins and I get this error whenever I try to open DDS files exported from Swat Ed "Could not complete your request because of a problem with the file-format module interface." any ideas what could cause this?

In meantime, I'm getting full DirectX SDK as I've read that it contains all necessary dev tools and plugins for most major dev suites. So if nothing else fixes this, DirectX SDK should do it.

And if even that doesn't help, then sigh, I'm stuck ROTFL

Anyway, the only way to change any texture in the game without having connections problems is including these new textures in a mod and even if you change the texture but leave the same name the editor will replace your edited texture with the default one if you try to close and open again the program.
The editor let you edit and create new textures for custom skins instead just because there is a dedicated class for that -> "Swat Custom Skin"

I managed to bypass this issue using my own method for sound file archives, but I haven't tested it for graphics. My hope is that it's same for graphics as for sound files so that I can replace old sounds with new ones and bug-fix glitchy and laggy graphics with fixed ones. This is yet to be tested, but at 1st I am yet to get the DDS thing working..

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SAS_WIZ
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There is a tool to convert stuff, ive used it to make some FSX skins, alas its not on this machine; so i couldnt tell you its name

SAS_WIZ

MAVEN
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dds

So, it turns out that there's nothing wrong with my dds plugins or CS5, I installed full 2010 version of DirectX SDK and in it there's a DDS tool that couldn't open exported DDS files either. The problem as it seems is with the Swat 4 Editor that is designed to export corrupt DDS files from archives that are marked as original and not to be used by modders.

That means that SwatEd wasn't useful to get the textures out properly. So I browsed for solutions.

I finally found few tools to help with this.

The 1st is Game Extractor (if I remember well) it can extract files from over 1300 games http://www.watto.org/extract/games.html

I tried it, and it was able to extract files, sadly, it wasn't able to export them with proper extension and no editing tool could open them either.

The 2nd is Dragon UnPACKer http://www.softpedia.com/get/Programming/File-Editors/Dragon-UnPACKer.shtml

This one was able to explore archives and list files within, but would often get read errors and couldn't export files either.

So, after none of the above achieved what I wanted, I found this gem, uModel http://www.gildor.org/en/projects/umodel

It's a small console app that does browsing, editing and exporting archives from games flawlessly, it's free and it finally solved my exporting problem. Support list http://www.gildor.org/projects/umodel/compat

This time I was able to extract all files from HUD.utx in their original format and open them in CS5 without errors.

But another problem appeared, the textures extracted with alpha channels are in TGA format, and so far I was unable to find program to successfully convert TGA with alpha to PNG for editing. What I did however is edit non-alpha ones and replace in original archive without any problem. If anyone knows a tool that can convert TGA with alpha channels to PNG please let me know.

Also, if you are to use uModel, use this command line to extract files -path=drive:/folder -export -all filename.filetype and it will work like magic.

If uModel doesn't cut it for you, then try the 1st two from above.

@Keller.

Since you are fond with modding and work on a mod already, I suggest that you get DX SDK here http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=6812 and then browse samples in \DirectX SDK\Samples\SampleBrowser for DX 9 tree.

I suggest that you preview and possibly use ParallaxOcclusionMapping (This one in particular) LocalDeformablePRT, PRTDemo, HDRFormats, HDRLighting examples and possibly implement them in the mod if possible. If nothing else, it will serve as learning material, inspiration and fun, specially if you browse DX 10 and DX 11 categories.

@Wiz, any help is welcome, so please share if you wish to Blum 3

Sorry for long-ish reply all, but I hope that everyone working on a mod will find this piece of info useful. If you are about to extract any files from Swat 4 archives, use them ONLY as learning curve and to see how things should look alike, and if you find the above mentioned tools useful, please donate their authors some money if you can.

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KeLLeR
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Wow Maven, your posts are always long and interesting...i'm shocked Exclaim
Anyway, it's so weird what happens to you mate:

The swat editor extracts ALL textures in DDS and you have to convert them in TGA after editing them because it's the only supported format which the editor allows you to import again so the fact that uModel extracts in TGA format is just a good thing.
About editing TGA files, well i do that simply on photoshop, it opens every format and i can even save the file as PNG if i would, so all these programs can be useful but i think that maybe there is something wrong with your photoshop program, you shouldn't have all these problems with SWAT textures. 8O

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MAVEN
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dds

Once again, sorry for the long replies :oops:

The textures that are exported in DDS and can be properly opened are only swat 4 custom skin textures that are clearly made for others to customize, but as far I know from experience, any other textures exported in DDS or converted are broken down and protected by the editor. Can you please try to extract HUD.utx files with your Swat Ed and try to open them in your Photoshop? If you can open and edit them, then my PS needs a reinstall or upgrade Blum 3

I can open, edit and save as PNG all exported TGA files too, but they loose transparency in both operations, does it happen with your PS as well? Or is there a special way to retain alphas while saving as PNG the exported TGA files?

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SAS_Sniper
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I use GIMP !

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KeLLeR
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In the SAS Mod there is a new crosshair and to do that we extracted the files from HUD package and edited it Biggrin

So reinstall/upgrade mate S:

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MAVEN
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In the SAS Mod there is a new crosshair and to do that we extracted the files from HUD package and edited it Biggrin

So reinstall/upgrade mate S:

Ok, sigh, I so hate to reinstall things, but what has to be done, has to be done. :roll:

Can you extract HUD.utx files, pack them in a zip/rar and send me that file? Or maybe TGA/PNG ones?

Perhaps it's my Swat Ed since I did some heavy tests on those sound archives. Maybe something got corrupt in the settings or whatever.

What I'm trying to do is change colors and custom design few crosshairs for people to play with but in the Vanilla Swat 4 since I already got the method for doing that.

Also, how to export alpha channels with the TGA files in PS?

BTW, GIMP is good, just not good enough for me Blum 3

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KeLLeR
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Here there are the textures of the crosshair, i included both DDS and TGA format inside the folder.

LINK:
http://ge.tt/3AiWPbH/v/0?c

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MAVEN
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Here there are the textures of the crosshair, i included both DDS and TGA format inside the folder.

LINK:
http://ge.tt/3AiWPbH/v/0?c

Thanks, Keller.

I dl the package. TGA is exactly the same as the ones I got via uModel, while DDS files can't be opened in my PS. So this confirms it, I need to fix my ps asap.

Update: I finally solved this problem. I reinstalled CS5 and the error appeared over and over, I even tried opening DDS files on another machine with CS2, and it sums up it wasn't that my PS was faulty, but the plugins.

For some odd reason, newest nVidia plugin installers installed plugins wrongly for CS5 and CS2 versions as if they were for CS6 and CS3 respectively. What solved this problem was that I installed much older 8.23 version of the plugins and it worked without any errors since that version used one type of DDS plugins for all PS CS versions unlike the newer releases.

As for the DDS prevention upon export, that stands, editor does try to prevent certain things, but so far only for some image editors.

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