Hello! As I mentioned in a previous post, I decided to learn how to create cc. Well, I have successfully made my first object, and a few people were curious to see how I go, so I’m sharing what I did and my thoughts on the learning process! You can skip reading if you have zero interest in cc creation, but if you are thinking of it, this may be helpful to preview and understand the basic process 😀
To begin learning from scratch, I followed Orangemitten’s Start-to-Finish Object Tutorial. This walks you through the process of creating a simple end table, which means you learn all the basics + terminology of cc creation along the way. It’s very thorough and helpful, although it does have small issues: it’s old, which means I had to figure out how to do things on newer (changed) tools, and there’s a few typos/errors, though I could work around them using common sense. Also, there was the issue of me being an idiot. Time and effort could have been saved if I just read the steps properly, because I somehow missed out on installing a few things, which caused me much confusion later on. If you are careful to follow the instructions, however, the process is quite straightforward — you just need to be patient, because for this one small table it took 5-6 hours (of course it will take much less time in the future).
Here is a summary of the steps, and my notes on them:
- Installing the applications, tools and plugins — there’s a lot, be careful not to miss any. This part took me a long time.
- Cloning the object with s3oc — to create your own mesh, you need to use a base game mesh for the base. I named, priced and changed the description of the object here.
- Exporting mesh resources — the object isn’t just one thing. It is made up of a high detail mesh, low detail when you aren’t close up, sunshadows, and slots file for the tabletop.
- Creating table — in Milkshape, the app where you work most of the time, there are cube/sphere/cylinder objects which you can manipulate very easily. In this case I scaled or squashed cubes into table parts, and moved them around until they resembled a table.
- Mapping table — this part I don’t still fully understand. The purpose is to correctly apply textures to different parts of the object, so patterns don’t get weird in game. I’m not sure exactly how it works but I just followed the tutorial anyway.
- Baking — this is creating images within Blender (3D software) which gives shadows (multiplier), highlights (specular) and colour channels (rgb mask) to the object. Without these the object will just look flat, won’t respond to in-game environmental lighting, and be uncustomisable. It sounds a bit hard but Blender + plugins pretty much do it all for you.
- Creating low poly MLOD — the object needs a low polygon ‘version’ for when you are far away from it in game, or else it will slow everything down.
- Adding new slots — slots are the places things snap to on tabletops. I skipped this part because I’m not interested in creating functional objects, just decor.
- Importing new meshes to package — now the mesh is finished, the different elements of it (high detail mesh, sunshadows, etc) need to replace the corresponding ones of the original base game object. You need to assign joints in Milkshape (I don’t get what this is but it’s easy) and overwrite the base game object files with your own.
- Adding edited images — finally, the base game object images need to be replaced by your own (multiplier, specular, rgb mask). The default patterns can also be changed. The app for this, Texture Tweaker, has a Model Viewer that allows you to preview the finished object before going in game, but for some reason it doesn’t open for me, which is annoying.
If you want to begin learning yourself, I recommend that tutorial — however, you might want to look for other, newer tutorials using other softwares. Apparently a lot of people use TSR Workshop, which seems like it has many functions in one place (instead of using a few different apps), but I haven’t looked into it just yet because I have an aversion to TSR 😛 I will probably change to it later, though, I’m merely at the beginning of my cc journey! Anyways, it was a long process but I finally ended up with this deceivingly simple table. I was way too proud when I loaded the game and the object actually worked!
Filled with excitement, I jumped straight into creating my own design. I wanted to make a wedding cake, in a modern/minimal style that would match the aesthetics of the upcoming weddings, like so:
I thought a minimal cake would be much easier to create, since I had already learned the basics, but boy, I was wrong. The actual mesh was super easy, because it was literally two cylinders; adding the frosting texture was a breeze too, since the cylinder only needed one face for the texture. The hard part was figuring out how to apply the texture without having to create a custom pattern, and manually add it in-game. The cake was cloned from a plant, which has an Overlay (a ‘skin’ of leaf texture). I wanted to do the same for the frosting but I didn’t know how to replace the leaves, and ended up staying up till 3 am trying to figure it out. I won’t go into the methods I tried, because once again, I was a dummy and didn’t see the simple solution. This morning, I installed a dds. (the file type for the overlay, + multiplier etc) plugin for Photoshop, made my own overlay and overwrote the original in Texture Tweaker. I was super excited to finally get it in game!
There’s some issues (it’s too reflective, probably need to edit the multiplier + specular) and I need to learn how to create decorations for it, but the object worked! I decided to OMSP on a separate pot plant and pear for fake decorations, haha.
Edit: or maybe it was just me being stupid and making the lighting too strong???
Next I will fix up the issues and begin experimenting with different textures and shapes, and begin learning more advanced modelling. I want to create cakes like these:
And after that, I want to hop into clothing. I’m going to be a spoilsport and say that the first wedding of Generation Three is Lilith’s. She is a fashion designer, so I want her to have a unique, modern and high-quality dress. This is the one I want to create, by Alexandra Grecco. I know it will be very hard to make, but I’m going to do it anyway!
Alright, I have finished rambling. I will be truly amazed if anyone actually read all that. If you did, I hope it was a helpful explanation 🙂 I wish everyone a lovely day/night ❤