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Thread: Vertex Animation: Help!

  1. #1

    Vertex Animation: Help!

    Does anyone know how to setup a custom Vertex Animation for use in a level? Like an animated Flag that blows in the wind?

    I made one, only to find out that you need to know UnrealScript or something to 'compile' the vertex animation, and make a .u package or something...

    Anyway, I've been watching the VTMs on UnrealScript and, since I haven't been able to make the initial .u package... and since I dont want to learn programming just for one stinkin' 33 frame animation...

    anyway, could someone compile the Vertex Animation for me? Anyone know how? Or walk me through the steps on how to do it using UnrealScript? I tried the UDN tutorial on it, and it assumes that you already know UScript... which I dont.

    Anyway, need help badly. Days away from completing an Onslaught map, and I dont want to spend the next week learning programming just for one stupid flag banner.

    (ps: I have the .3d and .PSK files ready)
    Ambient Sounds Pack (for FM designers)
    My Site
    Gunreal Beta Released (UT2004 stuff)

  2. #2
    Previously Important
    Registered: Nov 1999
    Location: Caer Weasel, Uelekevu
    If all you're making is a flag banner, why don't you use an xProcMesh instead?
    If you're really kicked on a vertex animation adventure, check the UDN docs here... though I'd still recommend a procedural mesh for something as simple as a flag.

  3. #3
    xProcMesh? Never heard of it - what is it?

    Oh, and TY - btw, that Vertex Animation tutorial on UDN was the one I was using. It assumes you already know some UnrealScript... once you get down to the "Importing" section.

  4. #4
    Previously Important
    Registered: Nov 1999
    Location: Caer Weasel, Uelekevu
    Procedural meshes are what all the flags and wavy thingies are, I think. It's the same concept as a FluidSurfaceInfo, but ... erm ... well, not necessarily fluid. There are banners and flags in the resources, off the top of my head I think there are some in the Volcano sets (I forget the names of things)

    I'm not exactly up on how to make custom ones, but I don't imagine it would be very hard to retuxture and resize ones that you find lying around. For sure I know there are some tattered ones and some long thin ones that aren't tattered, but I'm not precisely sure which packs they're in. And I don't have 2k4, so there may be others that aren't in 2k3.

  5. #5
    Oh, heh I forgot to specify - I'm making a flag that's closer to a Skiing flag. You know, those double-poled flags that they weave through on the downhill...

    I WOULD just use an already made one, but it's a desert Onslaught map and needs to have something... deserty, that blows really hard in the wind. I know ski flags are for the snow, but... hey, shuttup, its a good idea

  6. #6
    Registered: Feb 2001
    That gives me an idea. A Downhill ski racing mod for UT2004

    Seriously. There's the terrain engine, give the skiers guns and parachutes, add in some nice jumps and precipices, and a 'trigger parachute' key. Oh, and groin cringingly solid trees.

    There are so many things I'd like to try with the game engine IF I had the time...

  7. #7
    I know

    And everyone out there who's actually ABLE to work on a mod is already plugging away at some guranteed failure mod with 5 infantry classes and ten-thousand gay custom maps.

  8. #8
    Previously Important
    Registered: Nov 1999
    Location: Caer Weasel, Uelekevu
    Downhill skiing Spy-Who-Loved-Me-Styleee would be sweet
    Only thing it would be missing is crashing into other players, through trees and snowbanks etc... And hitting the posts.

    I'm actually quite miffed that the player doesn't have the ability to interact with Karma objects, especially after my recent Max Payne 2 jag. I suppose you could make an invisible Karma box and script it to stick to the player, and that would work... but I haven't got much of a clue how to do that.

  9. #9
    I saw a tutorial of how to make a swaying lamp... but it said "Note: this does not work online."

    I think the reason you cant interact with Karma is because of the Physics Detail option in settings. Everyone's Karma will behave differently if they use different Physics Detail settings.

    But aren't things like the Scorpion's green sticky gun in 2004 controlled by Karma? There must be a way to get it to override the detail settings, and be usable online.

  10. #10
    Previously Important
    Registered: Nov 1999
    Location: Caer Weasel, Uelekevu
    No, I don't mean like that. I'm fine with karma authoring, it's really easy to do.

    What I'm saying is that player avatars don't interact with karma objects... like, if I make a big swinging chain or a stack of boxes, you can't run into them to set them moving. It takes weapon fire, or getting hit by another karma object.

    So if I wanted a stack of cardboard boxes that you could shove your way through, I'd either need to trigger some really clumsy event-handling thing that wouldn't work the way I really want it, or I'd have to find a way to give the player avatar karma properties which, afaik, it only has in the Ragdoll end of things.

  11. #11
    Oh, yeah... that's gay.

    By nature such things should be available by default.

  12. #12
    Registered: Feb 2001
    I guess we'll have to wait for the arrival of Unreal Engine 3 with it's spangly new physics engine.

  13. #13
    Previously Important
    Registered: Nov 1999
    Location: Caer Weasel, Uelekevu
    I refuse to believe something as robust as the Unreal engine can't have every drop squeezed out of it before I have to deal with a new iteration. That's THE fundamental problem with the hardware wars these days: The new stuff is only generated so that polycounts / framerates can increase, which is ridiculous... but at least it has a ceiling. One would think that 2400 polys per character would be plenty with a decent skinner involved, but apparently 10000 is better.

    I wonder if it will be several hundred dollars worth of graphics card better.

  14. #14
    [vent frustration:]

    The gaming world is headed for the crapper.

    id Software said that Wolfenstein 3d shipped with maps that were completed in under an hour. They also stress that making games is getting more and more complicated, expensive, and time consuming. Today it can take 3 months to complete a map.

    With Unreal 3 Engine (look at the screenshots) just one normal-mapped material can be made of 4 textures. A static mesh pillar can be 3,000 polygons. A statue can be 30,000. Would you like to sit down and model one of those? Would you like to sit down and unwrap one? Skin one?

    The part that bothers me mostly is that the better and better looking games get, the more and more they forget about gameplay. So not only do you have developers spending 3 years to make 1 game, but that game comes out in the end being no funner than UT Classic. IMO, 2003/4 Deathmatch/CTF is LESS fun than UT Classic's.

    At heart, gamers are in it for the gameplay. Look at the Counterstrike players - half of them can't spell the word "graphics". Look at Thief... it looks like trash, and yet is the most desirable of all games to us.

    - thinks for a moment -

    I guess I like the direction Valve is taking with HL2. Hold the gasps. What I like about it is the SIMPLICITY and realism everything has. Everything is pretty low-poly... There aren't 10 thousand nuts and bolts sticking out of a scaly alien's breastplate.

    I guess my main frustration with Epic/id is that they raise the bar so needlessly high...

    My ideal game (IMO again), WAS to have Quake 3 with smooth character models. That was it. Now it's to have a combo of That, with UT2004's static meshes and projectors (so that not so many walls have to be empty), with HalfLife2's very basic urban outdoors. So take the urban outdoors, put a few static meshes here and there, some cool projected streetlights, and nice, smooth character models. ...might I add with the perfect and fluid movements of Quake 3.

    I think that would make a really, really good Thief 3, with all the right stuff for all the right reasons. No outrageous graphics effects... no outrageous clutter... plenty of simply comfortable viewing, so that you can forget about the visuals and get lost in the game you're playing.

    [/it's finally over, with a weight off my mind]

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