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AoW2/SM Mod Making
Moderated by Swolte, Ziggurat Mason

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Topic Subject: Creating a new ILB file
posted 08-30-07 10:30 PM EDT (US)   
Okay. Let's say I've got some frames of a unit I want to put into Age of Wonders: SM.

I know the game uses six directions. However, that's about all I know. When I decompile a unit, I get this text file and these palette files and so on and it's really confusing.

What do I need to go through, and furthermore what exactly do I need to know, to compile a new unit straight from bmps without knowing a thing of what I'm doing? I need a fairly detailed rundown as if my current plans for internal processing go right, I can have a large number of custom graphics produced from external sources (3d models of characters ect from WoW and other things), but we know virtually nothing about actually getting them into the game save rendering them to the proper angles and such.

edit -

Come on guys, don't be shy now. We've got the goods, we just need them in a format aow can handle.

[GIF, (414.83 KB)]

[This message has been edited by IskatuMesk (edited 08-31-2007 @ 08:38 PM).]

posted 09-01-07 00:29 AM EDT (US)     1 / 5  
I know even less then you but real nice pic. I hope no detail is lost in its conversation.
posted 09-01-07 04:58 AM EDT (US)     2 / 5  
First of all, convert everything to BMP format, 8-bit color depth. All images _must_ have the same palette and be placed in a subdirectory.

Images must be named according to the following pattern: <UnitName><Action>.X.YYY.bmp.

Unit name is the unit name (you had not guessed, had you?)
Action is the animation the image belongs to (usually one of Idle, Walk, Attack, Hit, Death, Special, Default).
X is the direction (1=South, 2=SE, 3=NE, 4=North, 5=NW, 6=SW)
YYY is the index within the animation (000-999, with trailing zeros)

Example: DwarfAnnihilatorAttack.2.003.bmp is the fourth picture for the SE attack animation of the Dwarf Annihilator (presumably a picture of some bearded guy with a Big Axe raised above his head).

Next step is to create an ASCII file with a .ILS extension. The contents of the file is in the format:


The first three lines should be the same for all ILBs. Josh never explained their function IIRC.
The lines from the Fourth on explain which animations are in the ILB, and at which position (1-100) each starts. There is no need to explain how long the animation is in frames.
NOTE: I had to use 1-based indexes, even though the actual BMP indexes are zero-based, for unknown reasons, probably because I use Default insted of Idle for the Default animation. If you use Idle as the action name chances are there that you must zero-based indexes. Check carefully your final ILB.

Final step: open the ILED utility that comes with AoW:SM. Select Batch/New Batch: a dialog will open. In the dialog, select the directory where you stored the BMPs in the file tree (chech that the BMP files appear in the box on the right). Select the name of the ILB file you wish to create/overwrite in the first file chooser, then the name of the ILS file in the second file chooser. In the general settings checkbox section, only the "Indexed files only" option should be checked. Finally, the file format for the files is Sprite (08bpp).

Hit Run. Choose single when the next dialog shows up. Cross your fingers...

Done! You have created an ILB!

Paolo Guccione
Alephtar Games
posted 09-01-07 07:55 AM EDT (US)     3 / 5  
Hi Rosen,

is it the same way to create an ILB for a new item ?


Maps for uPatch 1.4 - 1. Avatar of Lolth 2. Legacy of Lolth
posted 09-01-07 10:11 AM EDT (US)     4 / 5  
Absolutely not. You do not need to have a new ILB for a new item. You just have to put a new picture in an old ILB, or better create a new ILB with all the pictures you like for your custom items. You just have to use the "New" option of ILBEdit, then you import the image from the file it is stored in and put it in the appropriate slot in the newly created ILB. The new image will appear in a separate box on the right after the import, you just have to copy/paste it with ctrl-C & ctrl-V in the list on the left.

Paolo Guccione
Alephtar Games
posted 09-01-07 02:51 PM EDT (US)     5 / 5  
Hey RosenMcStern, thanks for the info. I'm forwarding it to my buddy and hopefully we should have something to show for it in the near future.
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