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How high poly/quality can fable the lost chapters handle [message #70183] Sat, 29 March 2014 21:06 Go to next message
|H10| is currently offline  |H10|
Messages: 1
Registered: March 2014
Location: Mars
My brother wanted to know how high poly or high res the 3d models and textures can Fable: TLC handle. He was wondering because the 3D models looked really low (*Pretty) Polly. lol
Re: How high poly/quality can fable the lost chapters handle [message #70185 is a reply to message #70183] Sat, 29 March 2014 21:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
xxNick is currently offline  xxNick
Messages: 54
Registered: March 2014
Location: San Antonio, TX
Interesting question. I dicked around with this for the purposes of stress testing and got some interesting results. Couple things. The most detailed models in the game rack up a poly count at just a few thousand. The overall scene poly count is limited only by your PC, and since today's average budget PC can blow Fable's graphics out of the water with settings all the way to 11, that gives you a lot of flexibility. However, there does seem to be a limitation on individual model poly count. I'm not sure if this limit is imposed by 3DS, DirectX, Fable's wonky model format, FableExplorer/ChocolateBox, or Fable itself, but going high enough in that poly count will cause strange results. Most often, the submesh that has the stupid high poly count is just ignored when I try to import it.

A good, safe and conservative number for individual meshes is somewhere around 32k, and you might be able to get away with 64k. But, you know, in most cases you could probably do somewhere between 8k and 16k with minimal impact on performance and retain the quality, depending on just how good your brother is at modeling and texturing.

Texturing, forgot that half of the question. While most textures are 256x256 or 512x512, I've used 2048x2048 textures without consequence. I don't see any reason why you wouldn't be able to go even higher, but I'd recommend editing the userst.ini in the main directory. I'm not sure if it is functional, but there's a line in there:

That may impose a limit to texture sizes.

Re: How high poly/quality can fable the lost chapters handle [message #70201 is a reply to message #70183] Mon, 31 March 2014 17:03 Go to previous messageGo to next message
IP3I is currently offline  IP3I
Messages: 1
Registered: March 2014
Hi, I'm his brother. So thanks for the reply, but can you answer a few other questions that I have? Although it would seem like i'm lazy by not just googleing these questions, the reason behind it is that I want more real-time answers and questions. Usually if it's basic questions people would just say google it and piss off, but that is how i justify my lazyniss i guess. XD Ok, how would you go about swapping out already ingame models and characters and replacing them with new ones? Can you also edit and change the bsp if possible and still keep all the encounters and such as it was before? Can you tell me how i could import 3d models from FTLC into 3ds max (or blender so that i could just export it into 3ds max and back if it doesn't work) and if 3ds max 2013 would be able to export or import the models?
I want to make an HD remake of FTLC for pc because FTLC:A never came out for pc and i don't have an xbox. Thank you.
Re: How high poly/quality can fable the lost chapters handle [message #70202 is a reply to message #70201] Mon, 31 March 2014 18:09 Go to previous messageGo to next message
xxNick is currently offline  xxNick
Messages: 54
Registered: March 2014
Location: San Antonio, TX
I don't really enjoy telling people to refer to Google. Besides, for your questions, Google is only going to point you back to our site.

Alright, first you need a DirectX import/export plugin for 3DS.
Take note that this plugin cannot export rigged models. So if you want to make new npcs, armor, bows, that windmill thing with the sails, you need a separate plugin that can.
Now, here's the problem. It hasn't been updated for 2013 yet.
Panda DirectX Exporter
You can try one of those other ones. I never had any luck with kwxport myself, but it hasn't updated yet anyway. You may want to look into this one, which I've never heard of and never tried and only just now found by looking for the first plugin I mentioned. But, I'll be very honest with you, I can't help you use it if there are any problems. It's going to require some self-sufficiency.

Plugins for Blender, last I checked, were semi-capable of doing import and export of static models for DirectX and needed a little bit of extra work to get them back into the game.

Here's the other thing. The game's models aren't in DirectX format. You need a tool to export them as DirectX. Both FableExplorer (any available version) and ChocolateBox (also any available version) are capable of loading and exporting models as DirectX. Not all models are compatible. You'll recognize them when you load them, easy to tell apart by looking at the mess they are in.

So, you'll open up your tool of choice, double-click graphics.big, and you'll get a list of graphics entries. Most of the first ones you'll see are animations, you'll be leaving those alone. Further on down is where you get the good stuff. Double-click the one you want, and click "Export LOD" - not the one that only says Export, that gets you the raw data. Export LOD will spit out a DirectX file that you can import into 3DS, provided you have the plugins. It will also export dds images of the textures the model uses.

Important note, there's a lot of data conversions going on with all this. FableExplorer translates the raw data to DirectX which an asian 3DS plugin converts to a native scene which is then translated back to DirectX by an englishman's (I'm only assuming he's English) 3DS plugin, which FableExplorer then translates back into raw data. Usually data going back in is okay, but on the way out, floating points get jittery and vertices like to move around, UV coords shift dramatically, and sometimes (almost always), weird stuff just happens.

When editing, it is imperative you take note of how the hierarchy, helpers and point of origin work. Fable is extremely picky about how it handles models and screwing anything up (and sometimes screwing nothing up) will cause problems. There are tutorials available on the forums here, and if you have any specific questions I'd be happy to answer.

Importing models back into Fable is a bit tedious. You have to import the model over all but the last LOD, and assign textures to each submesh one at a time, and then go to the next LOD to assign textures all over again. And a carelessly placed click can undo work. It's very frustrating.

The tools aren't heavily user friendly, they're not really even dev friendly. So you really need to be patient and take some time to learn how everything works. I need to emphasize patience, because learning this stuff can take a while. I recommend combing the Fable Graphics 101 thread. Oh, and before you do like me and think that some models are just uneditable, it's probably a problem with the name of a submesh, read about that here.

You're not alone. We're here to help. If you're stuck on something, let us know, but don't give up! The learning curve is a little steep at the beginning but over time you'll be doing this stuff like you've been doing it your whole life, it will become second nature to you, very natural, like breathing, and you'll be setting things up without thinking about it with that awesome muscle memory that gets developed.

[Updated on: Mon, 31 March 2014 21:15]

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Re: How high poly/quality can fable the lost chapters handle [message #70203 is a reply to message #70183] Tue, 01 April 2014 11:13 Go to previous message
CultOfByron is currently offline  CultOfByron
Messages: 29
Registered: January 2013
Location: Ilkley
Now I by no means profess to be an expert on this, in fact I really am in awe at the technical ability of you guys.

I have had a look at the various models (using Gildor's pskx importer for 3DSMax) in F:A and for the most part, they don't look all that different from TLCs models in terms of quality. Most of the textures look like they are higher quality however.

I've not tried importing any models into TLC but this might be a good opportunity to learn Wink

Still no sign of those heightmaps in the .xxx level files...

[Update] I've been trying out some of the Anniversary textures and, it's bizarre, they're certainly different but they're not "better". Maybe it's due to the fact that a 512 Anniversary texture on a TLC mesh is going to look largely similar to a TLC texture. Same with the Anniversary meshes (so far looked at in Umodel and 3dsMax) they're different, but not as much better quality as you might think.

[Updated on: Wed, 02 April 2014 14:29]

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