There seems to be a lot of confusion about what this program will enable people to do, and also it seems to get confused with Wes_h Milkshake plug-ins.
While our program shares the same main goal as Wes`s plug-ins, they currently take different approaches. (Me, Delphy and Wes have also worked together in sharing information about the file formats.)
Our approach is a stand alone program which converts 3d objects from a OBJ file (we are currently working on adding support for other formats) into a format which the game can use.
Another thing which is different between our approach and Wes`s plug-in, is that we also allow existing objects to be altered (there are restrictions on how much they can be altered) while retaining the other information from the orginal (various types of data, some of it believed to be used for animation).
This allows such things as hairstyles and body meshes to be modified.
Here are is a screenshot of the MTS2 Mesh tool and a few pictures of some of the objects created so far by members of the closed beta testing.
I`d like to thank the members of the beta testing for all their hard work so far in helping to test this program.
Most of the 3D Models I create are in 3D Max, and I use the Material Editor to apply the material to different parts. So, if I have a chair, I export the Max file to an Obj, will it have all of the Maps in the data, or would I need to re-apply them, say in Milkshape or another 3D software? Because the thing that troubles me most is, How are the textures going to be read. Would I have to create a huge Map that wraps around the whole object?
Judhudson, I haven't personally dealt with this, but I am pretty sure that the game applies the textures. That's how we can add multiple texture options to an object. This means that textures are not determined in the mesh making process. However, I don't know if this tool will allow one to make a texture option while making the mesh. That could be the case or maybe a future feature. I hope I know what I am talking about, lol.
There currently seems to be a problem with 3ds max obj exporter, untill we work out what the problem is (or we support 3ds format, which we are currently working on). I believe people are exporting their objects from 3ds max as a 3ds file then using some other program to convert in to a obj file. The uv cords for the textures are kept in the obj file, so when you import them back into a package you just need to change the Texture files (MATD) in the package to use your new textures.
We are currently working on making the whole object importing much easier.
A quick FAQ.
When will it be released?
We currently do not have a release date, but will be releasing it as soon as we think it is ready (and the supporting tutorials are ready.)
Can I use it to change a body mesh or create a new hair style?
Yes, with restrictions. You are able to move the vertices around to make changes to a current one from the game.
Can I join the closed Beta testing?
PM a bio to Rentechd.
Can I use it to make objects for a pay site?
After some debate, we have decided that objects created with it can be placed on pay sites. As long as some type of credit in the release notes is given that is was created with this program, and that our program itself remains freely available.
Can I make new animations with it?
Not at the current time, not enough is known about the way in which animations work. We are currently working on this.
Do I need to know how to use SimPE (or Datgen) to be able to use this?
Yes, you must extract the gmdc file from a package using SimPE and then replace the new one back into the package.
Can I make changes to the way a sim behaves with a object using this program?
No, this is only used for changing the graphics of a object, you must use SimPE or some other tool if you want to change anything else.
not only is that an excelent tool, but you guys' 3d art is amazing. They are beautifully done. Its my goal in life to be a computer programmer and an artist, and that just inspires me to doodle a smiley face on my arm. Really though, Its awesome. Next thing you know, you'll be making tools for animations. That is a hint, guys. Take your time though, I'll still love this game in 2 months.
I`d like to point out I didn`t make any of these objects myself. If I was to post objects that I made, then you all would be looking at screenshots of some boxes. So there is no point in PM`ing me asking me to release them.
Luckly though we have some very talented people in the beta testing, the reason I haven`t listed the names of the people whom created these objects yet, is incase I forgot to include one of them.
can we please have an ESTIMATED month of when this will be released...??? Juast so we can get an idea of how far you all are.
We really don`t know, it`s currently a case of making it easier to use, we don`t want to spend all our time answering questions and explaining how to use it. There are still more features we want to add as well, but these could be added after we release it. I wouldn`t expect it to be any later than Febuary when it is released, but once someone puts a date on something then something will always come up to make it slip past this date/month.
could we have in the very future a program or version of your tool in the way of home crafter or the original program to make skins, hairs, etc...? I mean an standalone program to import directly your models without use SimPE, cause there´s very much people with problems with SimPE (me included) so I think is very complicated and it took very much time usign SimPE every time you want to try to put a new mesh, I know that for the moment is the only option, but if you´re looking to do a very simple program please think about make an standalone program directly to Sims 2 without SimPE in the future
Here is two pictures of a new hair style one of the beta testers created. We still have some experimenting to do with making hairstyles as there are still a few poblems due to the way they are animated.
Now, for Question No. 2. I'm not a mesher, but hey, maybe I could learn someday. HOWEVER, I don't want to pay for a program unless I know I can actually mesh. And honestly, 40 days just isn't enough time for me to fool around with a program - I have other things I do. So, here's the thing - is there a decent *free* program out there that can edit OBJ files and won't expire after a certain amount of time? (Yeah, I'm a pill that way...)