Krycztij

TAW Moving Map Format

53 posts in this topic

Why Y? I don't yet know the formal name of this world. The information I have indicates it is a world in the redsea area, just as with the default TAW world, only the topography is significantly different.

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That was one of the theatres in TFX, so may be a artifact from that game....

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No idea what a DPPS chunk is. I think anybody could make up a new name...

DPPS chunk research appears to indicate a reference to an Amiga Commodore program developed by a man named Dan Silva for Electronic Arts. With the development of Deluxe Paint, EA introduced the ILBM and ANIM file format standards for graphics. While widely used on the Amiga, these formats never gained widespread end user acceptance on other platforms, but were heavily used by game development companies like Digital Image Design.

The reliance on an indexed colour model allowed for a different way of working, not found on many paint programs since. The intimate linking of palette and image data made DPaint an excellent tool for creating bitmapped icons, animation and game graphics before true colour images became commonplace.

"[" and "]" hotkeys could step through the indexed palette, turning indexed-pixel-painting into a fast 2-handed mouse+keys process, and the right mouse button would paint with the background colour (instead of bringing up a context sensitive menu as is common in modern packages)

Brushes can be cut from the background by using the box, freehand, or polygon selection tools. They can then be used in the same manner as any other brush or pen. This functionality is simpler to use than the "stamp" tool of Photoshop or Alpha Channels as provided in later programs. Brushes can be rotated and scaled, even in 3D. After a brush is selected, it appears attached to the mouse cursor, providing an exact preview of what will be drawn. This allows precise pixel positioning of brushes, unlike brushes in Photoshop CS3 and lower, which only show an outline.

It is this Deluxe Paint Preview Storage (DPPS) that I believe can be observed by opening any of the ILBM files, which contain a DPPS, in a hex editor. There you will note that DPPS chunk in conjunction with a TINY chunk. If opened in GWS, File Information reveals that the “DPPS” chunk is 110 bytes, followed by 16 x “CRNG” chunks which are defined as “DP colour range” chunks and they are 8 bytes each, followed by the “TINY” chunk which is defined as a DP Preview chunk and is 4062 bytes and the terminal chunk is the “BODY” which contains the “IFF image”.

Digital image design appears to have evolved from a heavy use of DPPS containing ILBM files in EF2k (374 files) to F22ADF (129 files) and down to TAW (13 files). Only 7 of the files in TAW appear to be active in-game and are associated with the GUI functions such as the Mission Planner. Many of the ADF-previously-DPPS containing .lbm’s were replaced by the single image containing .pcx format in TAW.

I was hopeful that this research would lead me to an understanding of the tools and processes which were used in creating the TAW world environments, however, thus far the only “pixel-based” editors I can gain access to are pre-1990 (Deluxe Paint II and AutoDesk Animator).

Still searching :popcornsmilie:

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As always, I'm impressed with your perseverance. :)

I think DiD's games up to TFX were either ported from or to the Amiga which may explain the presence of the LBM format.

No real clue though....

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...Are redsea.lbm / arcade.lbm legacy from the EF2000 system (with only one 400×400 bitmap for the whole scenario)? Why these colors?

I do not believe these files are legacy.

The reasons are:

1. The color map for both files are significantly different than the color map/palette for the maps used in the game.

2. The stamp space for both files do not reflect a direct correlation between the coordinate assignments of the SSD tiles in the ENV file. This suggests, based on additional research, that the file functions to handle tile transitions.

3. The ILBM color maps (CMAP) appear to be categorized in groups based on the indexed colors at positions 253, 254 and 255. Redsea.lbm, arcade.lbm and the nine cloud.lbm's can be uniquely identified by their colors at those indexed positions and only those eleven files contain that color coding at those positions.

4. The briefing maps in EF2K also share a relationship with files analogous to the TAW strangely colored ILBM maps.

5. That EF2K moving map, norwmmap.lbm, is the in-game map while noname 2320 is the strangely colored ILBM map in EF2K, which may act as a source bitmap image.

norwmmap.lbm:

norwmmap_zpsbzcbgjfj.jpg

noname2320.lbm:

2320-EF2K_zpsrq9xjrex.jpg

I believe the strange colors are related to the world editor, in which the files were created, and the need to use colors distinctly different from the game palette colors, in the development tools, to distinguish them for functional purposes.

Redsea.lbm must be read using the redsea.wld file, which defines the color indices, palnames as well as the widths of the stampspace, tagspace and targetspace, coupled with the 3rd component of the redsea.asc file. I believe it defines the transitions between base tiles, transition tiles, connecting tiles and special tiles for the redsea world environment.

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It would be appropriate to mention here that the EF2K target file norway.trg is accurately mapped to noname2320.lbm.

;<x> <z> <rot> <*.sss> <id> <colour>

The colormap indices, X,Z coordinates and ID name are correct. it is still unclear why norway.trg has tile (?) rotations when norway.dat has rotation.

TFX3 evolved the process away from the .trg <colour> codes in favor of a hard coded target list and yet, I suspect the world information file (.wld), for TFX3, played a more significant role in world development than in TFX2.

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Hi guys...

I'm trying to generate a Hi-Res Image of TAWs terrain...

Any ideas on how to fill those black squares?

tawbig.jpg

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I used the moving map texture as per the script in the second post of this thread.

I guess your picture is a visualization of redse_.map?

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I was using your two scripts, the first to generate the pallet, the second to fill the tiles together to create the map.

I think I didn't realize I still had to flip the generated pallet to get it to look the way it is in your original post. (top left corner is black)

When the script created the pallet for me. the top left corner was a land tile.
After flipping the pallet vertically to have the top left corner be black again, the second script worked fine.

I think the script to generate the big map expects the flipped pallet ^^

tawquarterbig.jpg

 

 

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Yes, I flipped the texture due to the data layout in .bmp files being upside down relative to the displayed picture. Pure laziness on my part.

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Having figured out how to construct the TAW big map from mikew's scripts means you have now come dangerously close to the revelation of the seventh ancient mystical TFX secret. You shall be rewarded with the mystical clues to the seventh ancient secret:  clue = "DID 97".

Look at the four corners of the TAW world map you created above, as it is displayed from redse_.map and redse_.lbm.  Zoom-in closely and you will discover that the northeast and southeast corners contain the bottom and top half of the "DID", respectively. Similarly, the northwest and south west corners contain the bottom and top halves of the "97". It appears as an innocent logo stamp, at first glance.

Now look even more closely at the characters themselves, and you will discover that they are composed of the juxtapositioning of terrain tile texture pattern contrasts which are unique and unusual. Tracing them back, using their map index values, and you discover a 15-tile, tileset of the following type:

01-96x96.jpg.656e9410a5a3278743306d7bdbd

 

This tileset does not exist, in-game, except for in the moving map MFD. That texture type is for a SYNTHETIC ARABLE: Desert Crop Formation terrain type. The moving map reveals the coordinate locations proposed for that terrain type in TFX. These TFX geographic locations are consistent with where the technologically advanced areas of dessert crop circle agriculture are located in real-life, in both Saudi Arabia and Sudan. The pivot center process of dessert crop circle production is best observed from an aerial view:

ISS030-E-90918(2).jpg.64255c850b05248ad560.jpg.57e14439d7ae88a6f518774dff582710.

 

For those who now know the answer to the mystery of the “Seventh Secret of TFX”, adding the new additional terrain type is a reality. ;)

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:D

I used TFXplorer to 'fly' to the corners, to see if there was anything there...but alas, no. :(

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That's correct. They are only there for those who place them there, by virtue of having unraveled the mystery of the “Seventh Secret of TFX” :D. I am certain that you recall the previous discovery of both the Desert Crop Formations .3 object files and .SSD files. As well, the 2 .lst files with the "descrop" tags in the index, these can be viewed in 3View with Krycztij last set of 3/SSD files..  The basic obstacle was not having an .env file to guide placement of the tiles, and not having the texture tileset. The TAWBig map gives us both! Simply resizing the fifteen 16 x 16 textures to 96 x 96 and placing them in a std. TM gives us the complete textures tileset and the tile locations are right there, in plain view, in TAWBIG. All the components are available (some assembly is required) ;)

 

PS: The corners are only significant in that they direct us to the same textures found in the interior locations of the terrain world. If you note the UV coordinates where they are located on TAWBIG (400 x 400) you can fly there in TAW and you will find a plain desert terrain tile but the MFD will show the crop formation tiles (eg: UV = 390, 315)

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I realized that their is one texture, for crop circles, in the extracted "Hardware" collection. It was to be included in the hardware.tm directory as tex_52.tm and used as a detail mask over the base desert tile (tex_28).

This is the complete tileset:

All-Descrp.jpg.3389305f5afd3c5198719a7ac

It is mirrored by the moving map tileset which I organized and resized for use in the game, if desired:

All-mmap-descrp.jpg.a4b8c0aae97013a61593

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noname11365-circled.jpgIt appears to be an earlier version of the known redsea map. I believe the tile transitions map, which is only in the ADF extraction, is noname11365. The crop circle tiles are the green tile stamps in the areas circled in white. The SSD list is in the "redsea.dat"

Have not yet located the definitive map (.env), but working on a way to construct it.

 

 

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I must admit it does not look as good as I thought it would :( There is no feeling of depth; looks like flying saucers hovering in the air …

Is this a real location from DID's data or did you place it randomly? I'm sure it looks much better when spread over a wide valley.

Aesthetics apart: Both thumbs up for the technical aspects :thumbsup: :thumbsup: Great work!

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I agree, it lacks depth. the question is why? it may be worth noting that the texture they used only exists in the hardware TM set. Perhaps there is some hardware feature, like 3D glasses  / Oculus Rift we haven't figured out yet :D. On the other hand, those files demonstrate a generalized method of significantly increasing the terrain tiles graphic resolutions. The desert crop circle tiles you see consist of base desert tile with the circles masked over the base. The way they use multitexturing detail masks, on this tileset, with the 008E opcode, is the easiest and most efficient way of adding texture resolution that I've seen in TFX. Why they would go through the trouble of increasing their texture resolution so significantly but then compromise the basic texture detail, escapes me for the moment. Note: That tileset, like a fairly large group of flat tiles, have no binary tree and using that method of enhancement would be like taking candy from a baby :lol:

That is not the data positions as described on the 11365 map. It is a full tile set substitution. The desert crop circle tile set grouping is: C,E,S.T.X., with no formal connector.  In TFX this is a pathways / infrastructure type tile set. I simply substituted it for another CESTX tile set.

Below is an image of the TAW Redsea map ENV tiles Directory Tree:

DIR-Tree-CESTX.jpg

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round-green.jpg

Just another quick insert, If anyone has any desert agricultural crop circle photos or images, let me add them in the game to see what they look like.

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Much better :thumbsup: Try to use sand colors on the edge, don't blend it with blackness …

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Thanks:

 

enhanced-pivotArm2.jpg

I wonder how the TFX particle system would perform on increasing depth quality...hmmm.

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