Has there been made any attempts to convert unit models from AoE to Civ 5?

Danmacsch

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As the title indicates.

I've only tried to convert civ 4 models to civ 5 (and only succeeded at that once, as I seem to keep forgetting completely how blender and NB2 works), but I'm willing to take on the task of learning it if it's possible at all.

Btw, this isn't in any way a request thread - sorry :p.
 

Deliverator

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It looks like it's possible to extract AoE3 models into Blender via OGLE and the OBJ format. Google Translated Spanish Guide here.
 

Danmacsch

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Thanks. I'll definitely look into that. Importing models from AoE II/III and possibly AoM would be fantastic.
 

Hoop Thrower

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I can contact Zipa_DH who's done the inverse process, importing from Civ5 to AoE3.

I've also got a load of tutorials to import and export from AoE3 to 3DSMax, which is a much friendlier program to use alongside Age of Empires. I'm not sure how well it works with Civilization 5 though.

I think this is really an endeavour that should be pursued with more enthusiasm, there's just such a large treasure trove of models we could get if this gets done (Want Pacific Northwest warriors? No problem! Apache Cavalry perhaps? Sure thing! Freaking Elephant mounted cannons? Of course there are!)

I wouldn't say using models from Age of Empires 2 would be a good idea though, it'd be like trying to use models from Civilization 3 for Civilization 5 :crazyeye:
 

Danmacsch

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I appreciate it Hoop, and it may be the case that those tutorials could come in handy, but I think I'll give the tutorial linked above a shot first.
Also, I don't have 3DSMax; only blender.

And I very much agree - having access to AoE3 units would be amazing. You're probably right about the AoE2 thing though, haven't played that game since, well, a long time ago, so can't really remember how detailed the graphics are..
 

Danmacsch

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Hoop Thrower

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Alright, so. I managed to contact Zipa_DH.

Bad news is... he doesn't remember much. :crazyeye:

Good news is... there isn't really a reason why this shouldn't be fehasible, the extensions are the same as well as the model types, so it should be doable with granny viewer no problem.

Also, someone made a DDT plugin for Photoshop just recently, which should help loads in regards to the textures of the Age of Empires 3 models.
 

Danmacsch

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Oh well, that's too bad. But nice about the plugin.

Another thing that's too bad is that since last messing around with NB2, I've upgraded to Windows 10, and now I'm getting an error saying something like "microsoft visual studio 2010 invalid license data. Please reinstall." when trying to open it. Tried updating/reinstalling visual studio several times and attempted with several different versions of visual studio. But so far no luck.

I remember having the same problem when initially using NB2 (on Windows 7), but can't recall if I did something other than updating visual studio to solve it.
 

Deliverator

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Alright, so. I managed to contact Zipa_DH.

Bad news is... he doesn't remember much. :crazyeye:

Good news is... there isn't really a reason why this shouldn't be fehasible, the extensions are the same as well as the model types, so it should be doable with granny viewer no problem.

Also, someone made a DDT plugin for Photoshop just recently, which should help loads in regards to the textures of the Age of Empires 3 models.

I had a brief look into this and found the following: I was able to use use GLXtractor to extract the meshes of AoE3 models via Granny Viewer however...

1) A large number of AoE3 models don't display in Granny Viewer meaning there is no way to extract them. This includes a lot of the units it would be cool to have access to. Haven't found a way around this yet. Maybe the 3DS import script would work anyway?

2) The quality of the smaller human scale model is not great. AoE3 came out in 2005 five years before Civ V and the same year as Civ IV. However the quality of the human model meshes and textures isn't even of the level/quality of the vanilla Civ IV models.

3) Even if models can be extracted there is no way to extract the animations and skeletons. (Despite the fact that AoE3 uses the Granny format like Civ V, granny files are effective locked to a particular game presumably to stop easy reuse of models between games so GLXtractor is most probably the only way to get at the data).

The fact that animations and skeletons can't be extracted means that you would have to rig any unit mesh you extract from AoE3 to a Civ V animation. Combined with the generally lower quality it is debatable whether this is really worth the effort.

All this said some of the things that are viewable in .gr2 look like they could be worth converting, some of the ships and buildings for example are decent quality as they appear at larger scale in the game.

The Google-Translated spanish guide linked above is still valid and tells exactly how to extract stuff, convert textures etc. I found GLXtractor.exe here if anyone needs a valid link:
https://sites.google.com/site/just4architecture//blog/extract-3d-models-from-google-earth
 

Hoop Thrower

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Hm... what kind of Models aren't displaying in Granny Viewer? I could help with that.

And yeah, smaller human models are... pretty bad, particularly the low poly ones are hilariously bad. If anything, I'd focus on the IGC ones, which are much more detailed, so they should be at least passable in Civilization 5, and as said before, the Ships are so ridiculously detailed they should work no problem.

Now, the animations are tricky because the game uses a shared library for all of them, models themselves don't quite have their "own" animations, I think I know how to extract the skeletons, but I'd have to know which models are giving you problem first.
 

Deliverator

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Hm... what kind of Models aren't displaying in Granny Viewer? I could help with that.

To be honest the majority of units don't show up from what I've seen. Under naval monitor.gr2. johnboat.gr2 for example don't appear, fireship and manowar.gr2 do show up.

Which specific units are you interested in? The IGC ones look almost too detailed based on the polycount but so far none show up in Granny Viewer fully. Some show up in part.

Now, the animations are tricky because the game uses a shared library for all of them, models themselves don't quite have their "own" animations, I think I know how to extract the skeletons, but I'd have to know which models are giving you problem first.

This wouldn't be a problem if the animations could be converted. My guess is that a large number of units have the exact same skeleton so use the same animations.
 

Hoop Thrower

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Alright, came back from some quick queries and... as expected those models indeed do not show up for reasons nobody is quite able to explain.

As of now I'm not interested in any models in particular, but I think that if we import the War Canoe we'd be making a bunch of people a big favour, so I'd concentrate on that, if only as a proof that it can be done.

Extracting skeletons is not problem at all. Drag and dropping the GR2 into 3DSMax provides the skeleton without model.
 
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