Hey everyone, many of you may not know me but before you take a quick glance at my post count and just automatically assume im just another random n00b posting lemme give you some details on my background.
I first started learning how to reverse engineer video game file types a few months ago. I began working on a level bsp extractor for halo 2 which allows you to open up a halo 2 .map file and read the level's model information. Up until recently with some help i was able to get it fully working. Il post some pics since your probably skeptical of it. After getting some experience in that project with reading file hex, observeing file structures, and reading and writing many different 3d file formats i started working on quick simple little app i made to extract a character model from this one japanese anime pc game i have but could never play cuz i cant read japanese. It took me about 2 days to write an app that can read its file format and save the models as either .wrl or .x or .obj. Being so succesfull working on those 2 projects which were my first it has gave me the confidence to work on a project to a much larger scale.
Why do i want to make a Model Viewer/Exctractor for Smash Bros? Well mainly becuase i enjoy the challenge of reverse engineering. Also becuase i have been a 3d modeler for about 7 years now. Im highly interested in moving into a career in game design and what inspires me to build models for games is by observing models from other games. Sort of like when a painter looks at other artist paintings to inspire them to paint better paintings. But why smash brothers? Its one of my all time favorite games but not only that, it has a HUGE variety of different character designs, level designs, and much much more.
I havent created my own model rendering engine yet for the model viewer portion but i have worked on some semi render engine like code to view the halo 2 level models. It was done just by basically rendering lines on picturebox with some basic 3d math applied that i managed to find on the net. the result in rendering a 15000 + poly map gave an over all performace of about 0.5 fps.... I recently downloaded TrueVision 3d and i will now be using it for the rendering portion of the app.
I been downloading the smash bros rom for about 3 months now. Im on dail up atm... but i finally got it since i dont know how to copy the disk onto my PC. I been using GC-Tools to try and make observations of the different files in hex but there not much i can make out since they all have the same extenstions. The only thing reconizable i can tell is the file names. They have prefixes that determine there type since ones with similar prefixs have similar binary structures. Files with the Ty prefix appear to be the files used for trophies 'Toys'. Pl files I beleave to be player files with each character's information. Gm files i beleave to be game files that perhaps contain the game's code for the different gametypes and adventures. Mv files i think are probably cutscene movies. These, again, are just some quick observations i made since i just got the rom.
I'm posting in this forum because I really hope that i dont need to go through the process of having to process these files to create a model viewer. And if its done that way it will work for only smash bros melee and no other gamecube game. Im hoping someone can refer me to software that i can use to dump display list information from DirectX so that i could use The emulator dolphin to read the roms and have what ever display infomration that is held in its memeory could be dumped into files that i could process to make them readable by other applications or my model viewer. Dolphin works exceptionally well for smash bros except some slight fps problems. I also know that its a pretty easy task for one of the gfx pluggin writers for dolphin to write an app to dump the display list information to files. If anyone can link me up with a way to contact any of them, that would be highly appreciated. If anyone would like to contact me, you can by AIM jahrain14, MSN firstname.lastname@example.org or send an email to that address. Im mostly on AIM but i do sign on MSN occationaly.
Im tired of being a lone wolf pioneer in some of this stuff and i hope to get involved with a community with my efforts. I hope to get some positive feedback in this thread. I dont wanna be flammed becuase im new or anything becuase i realized thats how it is in many forums and its been one of the reasons why i mostly feared getting into most forums.
And btw heres some shots of some of my results for some of the model extraction/viewing projects i worked on in the past.
Halo 2 BSP Viewer/Extracter
In this shot my enginer wasnt able to control the camera, it only allows linear perpectives but now that im using TrueVision 3d, that wont be a problem.
Deep Exploration shots:
A girl from that japanese game
The extractor can only read the static parts of the mesh, the dynamic physics part of the mesh included the character's hair and skirt, which is why shes bald and her panties are showing :p
Also for those who dont know me from my website's spotlight on g4ttv for the other sid project im working on which i have posted on this forum before i beleave. Im also working on a project to allow Zelda Ocarina of time to be played online using halo's engine. http://www.projectzeldaonline.com