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TUTORIAL - How to Create an Array dds


Dogface
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Arrays are used quite extensively in FS22. Arrays are used for a variety of elements in FS22, such as effects and crawler tracks. 

Arrays are a collection of paths stored as a relatively small DDS file (example below). Arrays can be created in Blender using Keyframes and then exported with the GIANTS Exporter. 

image.png  sharedArray.dds

 

KEYFRAMES

If you do not already know about Keyframes, I recommend watching the video below. It is a bit more detailed than you will need, so just watch it and come back to it for the details you need. You will not be animating objects, just points. 

Keyframes - Blender 2.80 Fundamentals
https://youtu.be/SZJswvw9wEs


You will add one Empty in Blender for each of the paths in your array*. You then set Keyframes along the path you want for your array. Note that in the video below there is a straight path, if you want a curved path you need to set the Keyframes in a curved path. 

*see the Numbers section below for how many empties to create.

 

Step-by-step Blender Guide 

> select 'Add'
    > select 'Empty'
    > select 'Plain Axes'

> on 'Timeline', move blue slider to the desired time (start at zero)
> move the 'Empty' to the desired location
> press 'I' on keyboard to get the pop-up 'Insert Keyframe Menu'
> select 'Location' to set a Keyframe at that location
> repeat moving the Empty and setting Keyframes until you have created the desired path
> clicking the 'Play Animation' button on the top of the 'Timeline' will animate the path you have created

 

VIDEO - Blender Keyframes
   

 

REFERENCE

In order to create the path, I recommend that you first import any object into Blender that could be used as a scale reference. Also if you can create an in-game reference photo of a path similar the path you want to create, you could add that as a reference photo in Blender. EXAMPLE: in the video above, I was making an array for a spreader and I imported the spreader into Blender. Also I took a picture of a similar spreader effect and imported that reference picture into Blender.  


EXPORTING

Step-by-step Blender Guide 

> open 'GIANTS I3D Exporter'
> select 'Tools' tab
> select 'Object Data from Animations'
      this will open 'GIANTS MOTION PATH FROM OBJECT TOOL'
> highlight all Empties
> select 'Load Selected'
> set AmountRel & AmountFix (see numbers section below) 
> enter the name you want the output file saved as in the 'Group Name' box
> select 'Create'
> select 'Export Object Data Texture'
> the array DDS will be saved in the folder that the .blend file was saved

You're done, congratulations on your graduation into the secret society of array creators. 

 

VIDEO - Blender Exporting

 

 

NUMBERS

Effects are controlled by an effects xml. Find the xml for your effect. Here is the path to the cultivator xml:

C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Farming Simulator 22\data\effects\cultivatorEffects.xml

In the xml, under <effectMeshes>, you will see a number of lines with 'numRows' and 'rowLength'. 

1) The number of Empties you create should be equal to one of the 'numRows' numbers.
2) Set AmountRel & AmountFix to one of the 'rowLength' numbers.

 

🙂 good luck!

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