Levels, textures, etc for A8

Posted By: karmacomposer

Levels, textures, etc for A8 - 09/20/19 19:04

I have downloaded what seems to be available for A8 but there really isn't much. Are there example levels, complete with textures, to learn from? Wads? Templates for FPS, 3rd person, etc?

I just don't know where to start.

Posted By: Rondidon

Re: Levels, textures, etc for A8 - 09/20/19 21:19

Start with the official tutorials or, if you understand German, read this book: Amazon Link . It even features a DVD with lots of video tutorials showing how to work with Gamestudio.
I think the best way is to start with WED and try to build some blocks. For the models: Nowdays I would use the software "Blender" and export models you find online to Gamestudio MED via the FBX format and then save them as MDL7 files. Use those files as models inside WED or GED .. or transform them to WED block geometry to make use of the Gamestudio lightmaps. You can find commercial and free models at https://www.3dmodels-textures.com/ or just create them by yourself! With Blender it is pretty easy. MED is limited and only suitable for simple models .. but it works, too.
Posted By: karmacomposer

Re: Levels, textures, etc for A8 - 09/21/19 01:02

I'm not new to game engines or 3D software at all. In fact, I own most engines. I also have an unlimited subscription to both Arteria 3D and Dexsoft, so I have no shortage of assets. However, A8 is very foreign to me (and no, I do not speak any language other than English). A8 does not work like Leadwerks, S2, Skyline, Unity, Unreal, Coppercube, Tombstone, Game Guru, etc. I do know how to use BSP modelers/editors - that's not it. It's WADs and the pipeline that really is my problem. Leadwerks, for example, auto-converts everything just by placing it all in the folder. Tombstone has its own converters that are pretty straight forward. Coppercube requires no conversion. It loads FBX, image and audio files without problems.

How does one use A8? I had A4 to now, A8, and I still don't understand the workflow. Maybe that's why I never used it.

Yet, other than Game Guru, I have yet to make a game that works, but Game Guru requires too much overhead and so the simplest game runs at very low FPS.

I am looking to make my games with large open worlds, lots of terrain that looks really good (Skyline's terrain is one of the best, followed by Leadwerks, but Skyline cannot export a finished game. Leadwerks is forever in development).

I KNOW A6 and A7 has been used to create finished retail games, so I would like to use this engine, if possible.

The language is probably not a problem for me as long as I understand when and how to use the scripts.


Posted By: txesmi

Re: Levels, textures, etc for A8 - 09/21/19 09:42

Acknex is built to take advantaje of the BSP tree. It uses ABT when BSP is missing. With a full control of LOD stages of meshes and materials you can build a reasonably large and detailed scenery with no BSP for a FPS but far from the open worlds seen in the game market, you know. Its workflow is like Source engines one but worse. Take advantaje of the BSP tree means that you must cut the scenery in closed halls and connect them by leaf cuts, all built with WED blocks and portals. This main workflow is in front to front to the open world concept. In any case you can certainly go out of the box and help the engine to minimize the draw calls and memory usage by merging or reusing stuff by yourself. You can try a test I did with a terrain, but real time procedural terrains do not collide, so it needs another workaround and so and so... Acknex is an ancient engine and its tools are from the first yeas of the century, that is a fact. It is many steps behind Unreal, in almost a couple of decades laugh Don't espect high compability. FBX2010 is the key.

Posted By: Dooley

Re: Levels, textures, etc for A8 - 09/22/19 03:57

@karmacomposer, if you're interested I could talk you through creating a simple level and publishing it. That way you'll see the whole process. Send me an email michael@schmidtworkshops.com or we can just discuss it right here if that's easier.

For the record I do not use .wad files or BSP maps at all, though I do know how to. Also, I think larger levels are one of the tougher challenges I have faced with this engine. For my space exploration game, I have been able to get fairly big outdoor levels, but it took a lot of manual optimization, and they are still pretty small compared to other modern games. I believe larger levels can be made, but I think it will require quite a bit of clever scripting to keep the number of objects low, especially for grass and plant objects...
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