www.tombraiderforums.com

Go Back   www.tombraiderforums.com > Tomb Raider Modding > Tomb Raider Level Editor > Tomb Raider Level Editor Tutorials

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 26-12-07, 17:12   #1
tweetygwee
Archaeologist
 
tweetygwee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: London
Posts: 2,151
Arrow Metasequoia Tutorial

Part 1: Metasequoia Overview

This is intended as an addition to Titak’s excellent tut here: http://www.tombraiderforums.com/showthread.php?t=79223

The difference is that I will give some step by step examples on the application of meta to make your objects in the next posts. Metasequoia has a lack of tutorials aimed at level editors that actually show you the process of making objects specifically for LE use, which I will show you later on. This is just the overview. You may remember my texture tutorial, I may continue it but I’m busy with projects at the moment!

Metasequoia can be a daunting program. The best thing you can have is experience, as you discover quicker and better ways to get what you want the more you work with the program. I can now make meshes quite well (but texturing them is not so fun/simple IMO) and thought I’d share some of the useful features that I had to learn by experience, experimentation and accidents! This overview section is largely based on what I found difficult when learning meta, and will give you some useful tips on how to go about things efficiently. I hope it will make the path to good quality meshes clearer for new meta users. Let’s begin.

Meta grid vs LE grid

At first, trying to visualise where your mesh will appear in the LE is very confusing. I’ll clear this up now. Go to View > Grid and set the interval to 52, if it isn’t already. Note that 52 is not the size of an LE square (51.2), but it’s close and what I work with. This is how the meta grid corresponds roughly with LE squares:



Notice that the green y-axis hits the centre of an LE square, so a mesh positioned like this:



will appear in the centre of an LE tile. As 52 is not the exact value, the tiles I drew further away from the centre will be very inaccurate. So now, we will make some reference blocks. In meta units:

25.6 = 1 LE click
51.2 = 2 LE clicks
76.8 = 3 LE clicks (Lara’s height)
102.4 = 4 LE clicks (a standard cube)

So these are powers of 2 (or powers of 2 added together) with a decimal point in.

Go to Primitive (command panel), select the cube and click “property”. Under “size” input 102.4 in each (or in one and then click “cube”). Close this panel, and back on the primitive panel click create.

This is a standard LE 4 click block. Save this as an .mqo file. I also have 1, 2 and 3 click blocks (putting one of the values above in the Y parameter). Now when you make objects, you can go to File > Insert and insert a block for reference, selecting “create as new object”, so your reference block can be manipulated separately. You can insert a few, moving them 102.4 each time to stack them in different directions. They are very useful if you want a column to be 6 clicks high, or are trying to get a torch bracket perfectly against a wall, for example. Make sure you delete it before saving as a dfx, because the reference block will appear in your mesh!

The Object Panel



When you created the block, it was placed in obj1 by default. In this panel the different slots are a bit like those in wadmerger. They have names and correspond to different meshes. If you created a complex object and then wanted to change or delete different parts quickly, it would help to have them separated. So every time you want to make a new part, click New in this panel. Using primitive or creating faces will be attributed to whatever slot you have selected (above, “Torch” is selected). This way, everything can be manipulated, selected, hidden (click the eyes), locked (click the other box for keys) and deleted.

Tips

- Double click a slot to change its name and other attributes.
- To select different parts of your object quickly, lock whatever you don’t want selected and hit Ctrl+A.
- Click “Clone” to make a clone of selected slot. You can change the position in the panel that appears, or lock everything but the new clone, select all (Ctrl+A) and then move/rotate it.
- Under “Misc” you can merge everything, merge visible and do many other things.

The Edit Panel



This isn’t shown by default (Panel > Edit Panel) but it is extremely useful. Now you can move, scale and rotate in all three axes while not constantly using the left panels. You can also see by what factor you are scaling, how many units you are moving, or how many degrees you are rotating. Just click and drag on the X, Y and Z buttons, or the top one for all three.

Miscellaneous features and tips:

- View > Document Information shows you the number of vertices and other information (vertex limit = 255. This is not too important if you use TREP to extend limits).

- Selected > Join Vertices (Ctrl+J) Joins selected vertices if they are in the same slot in the object panel.

- Object > Reduce Polygons can be helpful, especially if you have a high poly mesh ripped from somewhere, but can produce unwanted results.

- Selected > Cut, copy, paste and delete are huge timesavers. You can cut and paste a selection to create it as a new slot in the object panel, and copying is useful anywhere.

- Views:
F1 = Side
F2= Top
F3= Other side
F4 = 4 viewports, press again to return to normal.
- Go to View > Set View > Initialize to return the meta window to standard view, after moving, tilting the view etc. with the top right contols.
- In the top left you have 7 nice buttons, I use Pt, Ln and Fc most to better visualise a mesh without all the pink vertices and lines.

I will go through the left panels in Part 2, when we start making objects.

Last edited by tweetygwee; 26-12-07 at 17:14.
tweetygwee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26-12-07, 21:32   #2
tweetygwee
Archaeologist
 
tweetygwee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: London
Posts: 2,151
Default

PART 2: Making a Candlestick Base

We will now create a Candlestick, and later a table to put it on. Now I am still bad at texturing objects, and by no means are my methods suited to texturing. This is a purely mesh-making tutorial. The first step is to find a good reference image, or even better, a good reference object from your house! This is from a simple google image search:



Just look at the image and think about how you will recreate it in meta. More experience means faster and better methods, many people here will have better methods than me. This is more to familiarize you with the tools of meta than to show you shortcuts. Post away with your tips/suggestions, I want this to become a reference thread for people learning meta. We will start at the base and work upwards. Proportions and positioning can be dealt with later.

Remember:
Right click and drag to rotate the view
Use mouse wheel or zoom tool to zoom

1. Primitive – Cylinder:

U 8
V 1
Radius 6
Height 1

(TIP: Notice the “create as new” checkbox. This is useful, but not now as we want it as ‘obj1’)

2. Click clone, OK, then lock obj1. Click Ctrl+A, thus selecting all the vertices in obj2.

3. Drag the Y under the movement arrow until your clone comes to about the position shown below. Notice the 1.16 in the edit panel, showing how much I have dragged it.



4. Now scale it down in all three directions using on the edit panel to about 0.923 of the original. Scale it to about 0.5 in the Y direction (drag the letter Y under the scale button)


5. Unlock obj1 (click the key) and delete all of the top faces of this cylinder (see below).

6. Lock obj1, select all and bring the top cylinder down a bit (but not so the bottom of obj2 goes below the top of obj1, if you see what I mean).

7. Start connecting the bits with the ‘create’ tool. Click in the pattern shown below, holding Ctrl so that it snaps to the nearest vertex, although I find this doesn’t really do much, clicking near enough does the trick. There’s always the Undo button!



Now we have a little stepped base. This is how I usually go about creating “stepped” objects. You could have made a taller cylinder (2 in height), either segmented or cut with the knife into 4 vertically (use F1 for side view and hold Shift for straight cutting). Then you would use Rect or Rope to get the top two segments, scale them down and move it downwards. This way is shown below:



(TIP: in the next step, just use rect, or you can go to the “Edit Option” panel on the left hand side and find and click “Rc” this makes the select tool behave like Rect and the normal select tool simultaneously! Rp does the same for Rope. If you can’t see this panel, click on either side of the left pane and drag it up and down.)



Above, the blue dot shows where to drag the side pane up and down, and the Rc button pressed. With the coloured letters below you can change what axes are visible (ZX, like the floor, by default).

8. Press F1 for side view and use Rect or select with the tip above and select just the top of the base. Go to selected > copy, selected > paste and scale this new object down to about 0.6.

9. Delete the original top of the base and select obj2 on the object panel. Recreate these faces using the Create tool, like we did with the base. Now delete obj3, since we just created the faces on obj2, obj3 just allowed us to create them.

10. Look at the image below. You may have too many lines inside which we don’t need, like I have. Just select vertex ‘A’ and delete it. Now select B, C and the other 6 similar vertices by selecting while holding shift. Move these up (Y) about 0.4, creating the slight incline to the actual “stick”.



11. Press F1 and select the top two rows. Copy & paste (which makes a new obj3), using the edit panel, move it up 5 and scale it down to 0.25. Now scale it up in Y about 6. Using create, patch up the holes. It should now look like the image below.



We will continue the stick and make the candle in Part 3.
tweetygwee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-12-07, 10:00   #3
Titak
Moderator
 
Titak's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Drenthe, The Netherlands
Posts: 29,916
Default


Great work! Thank you.

I wanted to do something like this in my own tutorial, but still didn't have the time to do it...
__________________
If it walks like a duck and if it quacks like a duck, it is a duck.
Titak is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-12-07, 17:13   #4
Piega
Archaeologist
 
Piega's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 2,344
Default

Nice tut but very complex. Indeed to learn how to work with meta but this candle can be made in 2 minutes. I always wanted to do a tutorial. Would you like me to create the shortcut version? Maybe a lantern, also easy What version are you using? I work with version R2.3b.

Last edited by Piega; 29-12-07 at 17:22.
Piega is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-12-07, 18:31   #5
tweetygwee
Archaeologist
 
tweetygwee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: London
Posts: 2,151
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Piega View Post
Nice tut but very complex. Indeed to learn how to work with meta but this candle can be made in 2 minutes. I always wanted to do a tutorial. Would you like me to create the shortcut version? Maybe a lantern, also easy What version are you using? I work with version R2.3b.
Yes! I'm not really sure on my version, but I'd love your tips. I'm trying to show the tools, but in reality I would use similar methods, so your additions would be helpful to everyone, including me.

Edit: Ah, I could have just made one tall cylinder, segmented it and scaled the different parts. Yes, that's rather obvious now, but as I said I'm showing the tools. Still, your additions would give another perspective.

Last edited by tweetygwee; 29-12-07 at 18:34.
tweetygwee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-12-07, 18:49   #6
Piega
Archaeologist
 
Piega's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 2,344
Default

Ok, already working on a lantern. I will post when totally finished and you got it almost right. Working just a little faster with only one undevided cilinder. You will see with the lantern
Piega is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-12-07, 19:29   #7
tweetygwee
Archaeologist
 
tweetygwee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: London
Posts: 2,151
Default

Part 3 – Candlestick continued

1. Select the top two rows of lines in F1 (side view). Copy/Paste, creating an obj 3. To select it, lock 1 and 2 and Ctrl+A. Using the edit panel, move it up 2 and rotate in X 180 degrees.

2. Still in F1 view, select what it circled in red below and move the selection down about -1.4 using the edit panel.



3. Now zoom in (mouse wheel or zoom tool) and move the window with the green 4 way arrow symbol. Just click on it and drag, until you get a view like this:



4. Now we will join those vertices. To do this, first hide (click the eye) obj1 and 2, as we want to merge everything except the base. Go to the object panel – Misc – Merge all Visible, and then unhide everything.

5. Select (rect or rope) like the red selections shown above, where two vertices are very close together. You might not actually see the vertices, if they are hidden behind faces, but trust that they are there! Then press Ctrl+J to join them. Do this all the way around.



The above image shows the next sequence of steps.

6. Select lines holding shift as in A.

7. Using Pull (on the left pane tools), pull upwards, not worrying about preciseness (B).

8. Let go and press F2 for a top view. It will look something like C. Use the edit panel’s Z and X buttons under the movement arrows to adjust it. Zoom and move the window for increased accuracy. Meta’s axes and grid lines should guide you, as well as the other parts of the mesh. It should now look like D.

9. Adjust the top to about the height of the highest point of the candlestick (not the candle!)

10. Now we will use side view and the knife to segment it. Hold Shift while cutting and look at the image below to see where to cut.



11. Scale the top two rows of vertices in all three axes (this won’t affect Y anyway, as we are selecting flat selections) using the icon. Look above: the top row was scaled about 1.75 and the second to top about 1.2.

12. The top of the candlestick is hollow. Create a face in the method shown below.



13. 1, 2 and 3 are the important clicks, 4 can be anywhere. Press F2 for a top-down view, and get what is vertex 4 in the image centralised. Now rotate back to a normal view, and move it down (Y) slightly to give the candle a place to sit. Using create, fill in the rest of the gaps in the pattern shown below, using your new middle vertex:



Next, the candle, and positioning this mesh in Part 4.
tweetygwee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-01-08, 18:42   #8
ajewers
Explorer
 
ajewers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: -
Posts: 629
Default

Ok, I've created an object, how do i then make it possible to texture it and add it to the game?

I still new to this, sorry
ajewers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-01-08, 20:45   #9
tweetygwee
Archaeologist
 
tweetygwee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: London
Posts: 2,151
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ajewers View Post
Ok, I've created an object, how do i then make it possible to texture it and add it to the game?

I still new to this, sorry
You'll need strpix:
http://www.trsearch.org/Tools.php?action=gettool&tool=6

Here's some tutorials about adding objects:
http://www.trsearch.org/Tutorial.php...n=gettut&id=13
http://www.trsearch.org/Tutorial.php...n=gettut&id=14

As for this tutorial, I may get back to it but I'm busy these days. I'm also still improving, and the next bits will be speedier and less focussed on introducing the tools.

Last edited by tweetygwee; 21-01-08 at 20:46.
tweetygwee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-01-08, 20:58   #10
ajewers
Explorer
 
ajewers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: -
Posts: 629
Default

awesome, thanks
ajewers is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT. The time now is 08:56.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions Inc.