ToEE Portraits Made Easy: Help & Discussion

Discussion in 'Guides and Help Threads' started by Gaear, May 23, 2010.

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  1. zebrainz

    zebrainz Yumm

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    Found my problem Illustair, hope it helps yours. Screen resolution. My laptop is 1440x900 (16:10) native res. My ToEE resolution was set at 1024x768 (4:3). When the game was set at res 1024x768, the portraits were expanded more horizontally than vertically when the graphics stretched to fit my 1440x900 res. This was the reason for the light haze I was getting. The portrait pics always looked wider in the game than the tga files when I finished editing them for use, now I know why. It should be noted that if your native screen resolution is supported, you will find the option to set it in TFE-X prior to starting the actual game. Also note that the options icon (bottom right in the game) will overide whatever you do with TFE-X as both ways alter the toee.cfg file. Many different screen sizes including mine are supported in TFE-X, only 2 (1024x768 and 800x600, both 4:3) are available from options in game. When I set the resolution to native, my problem cleared up.
     
  2. Illustair

    Illustair First Order Wizard

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    You figured that out by yourself? Cheers, you're brilliant! It worked perfectly for me too. I was so certain it was because of the photo editing software I'm using. I'm glad I was wrong, I don't want to trouble myself downloading another app only to find out that's not what's causing it.
     
  3. Cloudsprinter

    Cloudsprinter Member

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    Hi,

    Previously when I wanted custom portraits in toee I used to paste the desired portrait over an already existing one using gimp. Save as the same file and this would always show in game. bypassing the need for Mes editing etc. However, I have NC 6.0.0 and cannot understand why this no longer works for me. The portraits remain unchanged in game.

    If using v6.0NC does the game still look in .../atarti/toee/art/int/port for the portraits? or are they saved when starting a new game or something similar? I currently have the Co8 IWD portraits pack installed and cannot understand how this pasting method no longer works.

    I understand the file formats etc but cannot understand why this no longer works.

    Could it be windows7>>?:twitch:

    any help would be cool.
    ty
     
  4. Illustair

    Illustair First Order Wizard

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    My OS is Windows 7, so I doubt that's the case. And no, you don't need a fresh start to update the portraits. I don't know how reliable GIMP is for this case, as far as I know, there's no 24 vs 32-bit option in tga saving, GIMP decides on this automatically. Perhaps that's the problem
     
  5. Cloudsprinter

    Cloudsprinter Member

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    Thanks Illustair that was it. Same process using Adesign and it works. :hug:
     
  6. Dreddnawt

    Dreddnawt Mettlehead

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    The portrait art turned out a bit tricky for me. Wish I had seen this thread before I DLed the custom pack with the readme.txt file from Sorcerers Place and jumped in from there.

    Thought I would mention, I didnt have Photoshop so I downloaded the free GIMP2 editor and used that. Its a bit clumsy but it worked once I got the hang of not pasting over the Alpha channel.

    TIP: You can use any image editor, including MS Paint, to create, edit, or resize your custom portraits. Youd be well served to get them to the proper sizes and such using the easier program before converting to .tga format. Save your custom files as .jpg or even .bmp images.

    Now open your targa editor (Photoshop or Gimp) and open the 5 CUSTOM_PORTRAIT files you downloaded from Sorc Place or the 5 custom portraits from one set of the Co8 portraits. All you need to do now is a simple Copy/Paste from Paint to GIMP (or your chosen programs) with only a minor tweak.

    IMPORTANT!!!! Before you Paste over the old image: Find the "Channels" tab that displays the different color channels of the image (in GIMP2 this is located near the top of the right side tools window). Normal pictures have Red, Green, and Blue channels but these .tga portraits will also have an "Alpha" channel. Alpha can be considered your canvas, like the piece of paper your drawing is placed on. Click on the Alpha channel and make sure it is NOT selected (has a white background in GIMP) while Red, Green, and Blue ARE selected (have blue highlighting).

    With Alpha out of the way, now simply Paste your .jpg or .bmp image over the old portrait. You will notice your custom image replaces the RGB layers of the old picture but now will leave the Alpha unchanged. This is essential to successful portrait editing as you WILL GET CRASHES in the character creation screens if the Alpha channels arent configured properly.

    Lastly, you save your newly modified .tga images. You can save with the same file name to replace the Co8 portraits with your own, or, if you dont mind the extra effort, you can rename when saving to create new files that are entirely your own and keep the Co8 portraits. However, if you create new custom images, keep in mind that you will have to edit the portraits.mes file and manually add the files names in the appropriate section for them to show up in game.

    Good Luck.
     
  7. Philip

    Philip Gruff Warrior

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    I've been doing some custom portraits recently and I have a query (yes Gaear, this is probably directed at you)...

    I hadn't read this post before I'd started and was using the Adamo and Cabral and also IWD portrai pack files, as a template / example.

    These files are 24 bits per pixel, and while the "big" images are 130x150, the Small and Mini images are 53x47 and 42x37, respectively.

    This conflicts with the instructions posted previously, so I'm querying their accuracy, and also if the instructions ARE valid, then I'm querying the discrepancy...

    I haven't tested my set of images yet so they may yet turn out to be 'bad'. I'm concerned about the colour depth on the greyscale images, colour images are all 24bpp but greys are 8bpp, the game may not like this.

    (I used Irfanview for conversions and it just coverts down to 8bpp when you convert to greyscale)

    --------
    Update
    --------
    I realised 8bpp greys weren't likely going to work, seeing as none of the other images are done that way, so managed to batch convert all my 8bpp greys to 24bpp, which didn't take long, fortunately.

    My question about dimensions remains...
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2012
  8. Gaear

    Gaear Bastard Maestro Administrator

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    Hm, well all the images were created as 32 bit targa in Photoshop, and Photoshop says that's still what they are (b & w as well). I wonder if Irfanview isn't automatically converting them to 24 bit upon opening.

    It sounds like the dimensions are all correct ... what's the issue there?
     
  9. Philip

    Philip Gruff Warrior

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    I see what I'm confused by here. The instructions you've created mention images of 51x45 rather than 53x47, but I'd missed the bit about the 1 pixel black border.

    Is that important to the game for some reason? It does seem a rather strange requirement...


    Edit: I went and looked at the IWD portrait pack for reference; they all have a 1 pixel border of sorts, but not black. So I'm wondering if the purpose of the border is just to frame things nicely, or whether there is actually some obscure technical requirement of the game engine that there be some sort of border (though I cannot for the life of me imagine how this could be)
     
  10. Philip

    Philip Gruff Warrior

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    I'm a bit confused about colour depth now. It might be an important distinction or it might just be differences in the way that Irfanview and Photoshop (for example) handle image files.

    On the left, we have a portrait from Icewind Dale, on the right, one that I'm working on (original artist unknown).

    [​IMG]

    The IWD image has a size of ~77KB and a stated "Original Colour Depth 32bit" whereas the Elf on the right has a file size of ~58KB and an Original Colour Depth of 24bit.

    Both state they have a "Current" colour depth of 24bit.


    I'm curious as to what ToEE actually requires, versus what's been done before because "that's just the way it works in photoshop" etc.

    There doesn't seem to be a great difference between 32bit and 24bit colour but I don't want to find that ToEE throws a wobbly because of the difference.

    I've gone through character creation OK using these 58KB / 24bpp portraits without issue but haven't run them through the game to check all the various character states (using the smaller images), yet.
     
  11. Philip

    Philip Gruff Warrior

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    Actually yes, that sounds about right, so that explains that part.


    Now I'm just wondering about the necessity of 32bpp, over 24bpp... Because the 24bpp ones do seem to work, but perhaps that's a fluke and they won't work reliably.
     
  12. Gaear

    Gaear Bastard Maestro Administrator

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    Well the original requirements from Troika were that they had to be 32 bit, so we've just always done them that way.

    You could do away with the black border if you wanted but it is ideal for framing the small and mini portraits. I've noticed that if you don't have it, the images appear to shift slightly going from color to black and white.

    btw, are you using the templates provided in the portraits made easy pack?
     
  13. Philip

    Philip Gruff Warrior

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    Yeah, it's all making sense now. I have found the game will handle the 24bit files I've got, some of the time, but at other times (tbh, most of the time) crashes, no doubt in response to these.
    Strange though, because I successfully went through char creation with 3 new Portraits OK, I'd have thought it would have barfed there if it was going to, but it tends with my (apparently bad) portraits to fall over when trying to view inventory (ie. render the 130x150 image) in the shop map, having just added new creations to a test party.


    Reading up more or Targa format, it's 24bits of colour for the main image, and then an extra 8bits for transparency info (Alpha Channel). I didn't think that extra stuff would be important, it certainly seems I was wrong.


    No :(

    It just hadn't ocurred to me that it would be this hard. I mean, it's still not THAT hard, I just thought "how hard can it be, It's just a case of cropping and converting a few images!"

    Well, I was half right :sadblinky




    It also seems to be a good idea (at least for the minis) because the blue "character selected" square drawn around the mini portrait is drawn as a 1-pixel square, 1 pixel in from the edges. So if your mini portrait pictures are borderless, when the character is selected it does look a bit odd.


    Right, at least I only did 8 portraits instead of 40. I'm going to fix and test these properly now and then when they all work happily I'll do some more, test and then post the results.

    And I'm sorry to be such a pain, and ask so many questions when tbh I should have paid more heed to the instructions.
     
  14. Philip

    Philip Gruff Warrior

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    ...and an hour or so later, all problems fixed, tested, two silly portraits.mes numbering errors caught and voila, all my new bits work, which is nice.

    I really wish I'd seen the tip about using paint.net sooner, that's sorted everything out and would have saved me all sorts of bother. Irfanview is not entirely useless, but it's certainly NOT up to the job of creating or editing portraits for ToEE.
     
  15. Ellderon

    Ellderon Member

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    I've recently got ToEE from GOG and made a few portraits myself and am experiencing something strange.
    Only 5 of them show up. Out of 24. And it seems to skip some.
    Here's the file. Maybe someoen here can figure out what's wrong.

    http://www.mediafire.com/?o99omoqobqq55
     
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