Z-UI Recoloring Assets

Zyxpsilon

Running Spider
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EDIT(04-07-20_14!); HUGE news about a BNW compatible version!

Here's the direct Steam-Workshop link to it; http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=281115092

... or (as it was requested by some people) in the CivFanatics D/L section; http://forums.civfanatics.com/downloads.php?do=file&id=22985

**********

EDIT(29-04); Corrections below to comply with v1275 fixes.

EDIT(10-02); A couple more files below!

EDIT(02-02); Added some new stuff in post #3...

EDIT(15-01); New version (v2) has been updated in the Downloads section with a whole bunch of extra files (mostly Notifications items & Hover Hint boxes!) along with the three DiploCorner buttons, etc.

EDIT(04-01); In #3 slot below, you now have three new colorful buttons.

EDIT(01-12); Released! Find it all here. *** DELETED.

It's too blueish for my taste & behaves like common hip-hop-techno standards; I heard a few formal complaints about how the UI feels too commercial or even downright slick silly.

So - although, i may be waaaayyyy over my head with these attempts - i've decided to tackle a complete rework of all if not many of the UI elements such as popup framings, corner backgrounds, loading bars, clicked hovers, few icons & what else.

To be honest, it's an extremely *HUGE* task & some highly complex editing is required. Proper saturation & balanced coloring is fundamentally driven by acute artistic sensitivities which i might not have enough of... and, yet i can only prove i do by creating the stuff for anyone to judge or use.

I expect this to slowly become a fully Modular context where you'll be able to select what you wish only. Either through an Lua/Xml functional component or within an easy install process.

a) The whole first UI will be GreyScale with a few dark reds here & there to add contrast where it may matter most for visual "appeal".

b) Once that initial one is done, i'll possibly wrap this all up with extra versions such as Magenta, Red, Green (etc) inspired settings.

Gotta start somewhere... :scan:

#1) The Minimap... i felt it needed a somehow darker setting. So below, you'll find the zip of a tiny set with the basic 4 files (Fog, Grass, Shallow, Water) which need to be put straight into the ..\Resource\DX9\(here) folder *Temporarily* or until i create the formal Mod for it.
PS; Mountain default Triangular tag has been replaced with an hexagonal image.

#2)... and continue with the "blending_a_little_better_with_coast" river diffuse file. **Deleted, fixed by v1275.

#3)... three DiploCorner buttons designed for Social Policies, Advisors Council & Diplomacy.
EDIT; Also added a new TimerMeter while (for those curious about these) the LeoPaRd & ErasCorner notification icons are shown since i'm currently working on both standalone MODs. I wanted to use DiploCorner location at first but it will be MUCH easier to access and design the whole stuff from there instead.

#4)... Your difficulty levels should now be more distinctive since they use individual colors instead of the browny_yellowish vanillas.

#5)... As requested by Amble, the FoW clouds are much more darker -- watch out, there's a huge Storm coming! ;)

Sooooo, the maximum of 10 files has been reached for this post; if i have anything to add later... it will have to be inserted in some other replies below. Continuing with #6, etc.
 

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  • Darker_FogClouds.zip
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Baleur

Prince
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Jul 9, 2010
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Qingdao, China
God i know, the vanilla UI is like, feels cheap and pretentious (come on, plastic roman pillars? gimme a break).
I'm all for pretentious, pompus and grand, but when it looks cheap, youck!

Hope you find time to do this!
 

Zyxpsilon

Running Spider
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I'm really not going to re-invent the wheel here... i simply want to recolor most of the UI assets -- for now.

It sure is a great idea to alter *some* vanilla graphics though, i agree. Problem is, there is about as much opinions as there is individual users. Art concepts are sensitive issues where beauty & ugliness mix together very closely.

If it were just me, i'd go for Sci-Fi inspiration and soon after people would want Medieval, Abstract, Robotic, Barbarian, Zen, Psychedelic stuff all over *their* UI & what else!!

Anyhow, let's see what happens next.
_______________________________

#6)... Although the formal MOD for them isn't ready yet, these new Icons for GameSpeeds represent in order L-R, T-B; Instant, Swift, Quick, Fast, Standard, Slow, Epic, Thousand, Marathon, Continuum & Eternity. The attached Zip has the current defaults only. As usual, all three files must be copied to the Resource/DX9 folder.
_______________________________

You probably expected these two new sets of files to be included into the "Recoloring Assets" thread, eventually ;) -- so, here they both are.

#7)... Map Sizes.

#8)... Map types. (Updated to match v1275 fix)
 

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  • MapTypes_wColors(v1275).zip
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Zyxpsilon

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Allllmmmmmoooosssttt there...
Just a few more tiny verifications & fine-tuning a couple more assets & i'm through with the GreyScale/Reddish Interface MOD.

See below.

************

EDIT... Valkrionn, here's the Icons we discussed about!
 

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Zyxpsilon

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Alright, it's all done and ready for... -- ooooopppps, a quick story first if you don't mind.

- Firedup ModBuddy, compiled the entire structure, uploaded the thingy, started the testing phase.
- Yup, everything looks fine.
- Went to lunch, gotta eat.
- Then while thinking hard about a few tricky programming habits of mine... i realized that boot-time acquisition must be called from within some code routine.
- Sure enough, i still had all & each 174 files worth neatly copied in my DX9 folder.
- Plouck, all erased.
- Bang, activated v1 to reset the Mod.
- Whadda'ya'know - only a few recolored assets somehow creeped into the UI.

That should teach me.

So; until ModBuddy does what it's supposed to be doing - which is to allow UI concepts moddability & provide us with the option to boot it all at runtime even if it means creating any sort of valid project/solution assembly of our items.

I can only give (exclusively to/from CFC as of this moment, btw) an indirectly loading set of files to YOU people.

Here.
Enjoy.
 

alpaca

King of Ungulates
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
2,322
This is indeed a problem. I like the new Mod Browser and such but it doesn't make the modding interface like it was in Civ4 (where you reloaded the game when activating a mod) obsolete. Just optional.

In my opinion, you should be able to add a flag to your mod, "Reload Game System" and then it behaves like in Civ4, with the new assets added at loading time rather than at runtime. Maybe once we get DLL access because for that it's definitely necessary
 

Zyxpsilon

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Thank's for the kudos & comments, guys... :blush:

It's always nice to know people appreciate our work - the more reasons why we (modders in general, btw) must continue our own stuff to offer alternative(s) to Fanatics out there!

PS; I'm thinking about re-editing a special set of the intro-popup menu frames_trims to create yet another enviro change. I went to Civ5 official site and found an interesting SWF in the Civilizations section which contains numerous images taken off the Boxset pictures (mostly final concept art), all alpha channeled and ready to "re-use" for such a project. Later...

As for recommended tricks to allow runtime picking of this new UI assets, alpaca - i'd be willing to try a simple wait&see approach for awhile to give the ModBuddy team time to enhance (and FIraXis what needs to!) the vanilla tools -- so that our pending workflow and decisions still complies with further functional components & program options.
Although, i certainly could use a true Nexus right now.

It sure is somehow frustrating to realize some of the stuff we urge to create isn't entirely compatible with a few lua/xml rare calls & what else... only time will tell.

I'm THAT much patient for anything, anyway.
Again, tks all.
 

Burberryan

Chieftain
Joined
Jan 9, 2006
Messages
41
I don't have a problem with the default interface in general, but I do hate having to read the Civilopedia in a dark background with clear text, which is far harder on the eyes and more difficult to read than the other way around (*).

Because of that, this mod caught my attention. Is or would there be the possibility of a template which changes the Civilopedia pages to a clear background with dark text ?


(*) Not sure about how or who started that nonsensical trend in computer based stuff such as web pages, forums and games, and I often give up on using sites and resources which use a dark background with clear text. Why do you think that books and newspapers use a white background and black text, to begin with ? Far beyond the simple origins of paper and ink explanation, it's because it's the best for the eyes and readability. It'd be easy to produce books and papers with black pages and white text, if only there was any advantage to it. For further details, it's advisable to do some reading or consult with a medical doctor regarding how the human eye and light interact.
 

Zyxpsilon

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Is or would there be the possibility of a template which changes the Civilopedia pages to a clear background with dark text ?

Certainly, even if some DDS assets are shared between all UI elements & those found in Civilopedia only.
I guess, someone could always gather up its corresponding CivilopediaScreen.XML file, edit the color fields for text and reproduce each of the exact files (while renaming their call-tags for exclusive use there!) used for the background framework with any choice of lighter coloring.
 

Zyxpsilon

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As a stand-alone file, the DiffuseFile (assuming you're talking about the Zip in first post!) for Rivers blending simply needs to be dropped straight into the main game folder Resource\DX9 directory... from there, the "medium-greenish'cyanish coloring" for it will override the default "Light_Blueish" version. Thus, why it blends much more gently with some coastal tiles; in particular, from different angles & under sun-reflection conditions it all becomes an almost perfect match.
 

jacktannery

Prince
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Apr 8, 2006
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446
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Dublin
Zyxpsilon, I just wanted to say thankyou for this work. I am using your darker mini-map, recoloured UI and three diplocorner buttons, and the game looks a million times better.
 

Elenhil

Warlord
Joined
Jan 19, 2008
Messages
254
As a stand-alone file, the DiffuseFile (assuming you're talking about the Zip in first post!) for Rivers blending simply needs to be dropped straight into the main game folder Resource\DX9 directory...
Will it work for DX11, too?
 

Zyxpsilon

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Zyxpsilon, I just wanted to say thankyou for this work. I am using your darker mini-map, recoloured UI and three diplocorner buttons, and the game looks a million times better.

Glad you're enjoying any of it... that's what they were all made for! ;)

A bit of a trivia about the Greyscale UI;

-- At first sight it became obvious to me that the Intro screen was more of a "Bronze Statue Atlas" theme than the glossy Blueish they opted for.
-- The coloring balance then went from a pure set of (pretty lame) Greys to some fine-tuning for the hover boxes & selections. That is a sort of trick to represent bronze reflections.
-- I soon realized the whole supplemental Reddish elements could be integrated as well without too much impact on the package intent.

I've started working on a Green+Yellowish version and will probably have to alter all the Units panel Icons too since the default sharp white_with_cyan_glow are a little too contrasting on a green background. Maybe a few more days of test will convince me to let them as is though even if i would have to alter the current darker green(s) with slighty less brightness.

And then, a third (Magenta+LightGreys!) followed by a Gold+Blackish or somethin'.
 
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