View Full Version : An attempt at ******* the pba files
02-04-2004, 04:53 AM
I've begun slowly taking apart the pba format in an attempt to create an import/export plugin for milkshape. I know little about them so far, only that:
1) Unless im missing something essential which I dont think I am , the animation is vertex animation and not joint animation. In a way this makes it simpler except for the fact that milkshpe does not support this type of animation. I believe there is a way around this and it is not urgent at the moment, at worst case senario milkshape 2.0 will be out sooner or later...
2)The pba files contain all the animation the model has. However i am unsure what exactly controls these animations, ie how does the engine know when to switch between these, hopefully it is not ingrained into the pba format....
3) things like tags are still undefined im not there yet.
I'm going to email pyro for some dosumentation but my chance of reply, much less success, is probably in the single digit range :0
This is last effort shot at seriously modding praetorians, so if you have any expierance with programming or 3d formats or general knowledge about modding the game please reply so we can work together, as it is this is quite a task for me.
02-04-2004, 08:22 AM
I dont have experience with models 3D, but I have created the MoD Imperial, with new race greek and more things.
For me, is very easy read the code of praetorians because this is in spanish ^^.
If you need me, contact with me - firstname.lastname@example.org
Forum the MoD Imperial --> www.foromod.clan-gd.com (http://www.foromod.clan-gd.com)
sorry, i only have a lot of experience with modding commandos.
i will take a look at the files though, maybe i find some comparisation with prae and commandos...
good luck and lets hope its gonna work;)
(and awakening, im kinda jalous! wish i could perfectly read and write spanish. i do know pretty much words but thats all cuz of modding :p )
02-05-2004, 07:40 AM
Hy ,y learn every things about the game file extensions,and is almost done by decoder the *.pba files.
Here is my mail:email@example.com
For Awakening:I retreat my maps and y updates 2 maps:ftp://126.96.36.199 now everythings is ok,and Awakening,dont worry about the map editor,y change my mind,and y not release.Thanks for the info,and only way is work toghether.
Now,Pauldls,if you need my,please send on mail and y help you everythings you need,documentation,programs ...etc.
02-05-2004, 03:57 PM
I know absolutely nothing, so don't ask me!
02-06-2004, 12:34 PM
Oh! It seems that you take the reason to me in two things, first in sending the editor, and to second in the unbalanced maps.
Have you also changed of opinion in passing the editor to me?
02-06-2004, 06:03 PM
I sent you an email pitbullKiller, im intrigued that you have a map editor? Please explain more.
02-07-2004, 05:36 AM
Y sent you replay Pauldls,and y explain you moore for the map editor(is write in delphi 7) and pba files.Sorry y mast go in germany now(my jobs)but y return quickly.
02-07-2004, 05:57 AM
And y forgot one things,Awakening,wat do you want for my?First y presents your appologies for my maps and y retreat this maps and build another.Second, y read your post by the foromod,and y do not understand,wat is the problem with you?Y respect you for your work about the mod,y respect you about everythings you make for this game,you dont need to adress injuries about the map editor,y says before y says now:Y CHANGE MY MIND AND Y NOT PUBLISH THE MAP EDITOR ,this is my work and y understand this thing now(and thanks again for the info) wat is the problem about my map editor,but you every post you write, is write about my and my UNBALANCED MAPS,y repet you,this is my first map,and y resolved problem,no need to remember my everytime you post sommethig(no see balanced in your allies map),and finaly y see no reason for pass my map editor by you.Y make it decision and y share with Pauldsl everythings about the codes for Praetorians and my maps editor.
And Awakening y repet you finaly,don't need to remember my everiday only by my maps,becouse no see reason(y resolved problem)problem)new maps is work verry good.
Could you please post some screenshots of your editor? I'd love to see how you've done it. I've been busy designing a editor myself, though only some rough drawing since I know nothing about programming (yet). If you don't have space to upload some screenshots, then mail me, I'll host it. If you, or anyone for that matter would like to see my suberb drawing skill just click here (http://home.pi.be/~turkyen5/praeteditor.jpg). Though keep in mind that the text is in Dutch, I drew this at work since I had nothing else to do.
02-07-2004, 11:41 AM
Now I do not have any problem. You yourself you have seen that to rectify it is of wise people. :D
Now your better maps seem to me ^^
If you want we can work together in the Imperial MoD ;)
02-07-2004, 12:05 PM
I knew you guy's made maps for Praetorians by modding existing ones (such as Pauldis first maps) but you guys are now makign a map editor?? how well is that going?
and you made a MoD? for single player or multiplayer??
been a while since ive played Praetorians, I really shoudl reinstall it :cool:
02-07-2004, 01:10 PM
I may be wrong but from what I understand talking to people it isn't a map editor like people are thinking, where you can draw roads, change terrain, etc. It reads in the map script files and automates converting 1 player to multiplayer maps. Then it gives and interface to change positions, units, etc without editing the scripts by hand. I think it could be a useful tool for map makers, not really doing anything new but making what was done by hand a lot easier. So the same map, but easier to place/move/change units around. I think awakening is worried that newbies who couldn't do it by hand will mess around with there makes causing all kinds of sync errors. I'm not sure how much of an issue this would be.
But I may be wrong ... sometimes its hard to follow, a bit of a language barrier.
02-07-2004, 01:27 PM
Ahh I see!
Perhaps it would be best to be left in your hands then guys, out of sync errors would be rampant if everyone started editing maps!
@m, shall i post that pic you drawed before this one?:p
anyway, 3 words for you @m (in dutch):
Pay attention on those and it wont look like your 3 year old bro drew it:p
02-07-2004, 05:41 PM
You right Jason, is the script interpreter(convert to Single-maps -in multiplayer maps)is write in delphi(and y m not newbie)here is my ftp://188.8.131.52 y post 4 screenshots by map editor,is still beta,but can't read everythings about:position enemy on the map,village position,and convert in output *.mss file.No errors yet y making maps verry easly and quickly,y learn everythings about coordonate in map,and is easy to explain that(y m so tired to speak in english).You right Jason about this coordonate it will begin left up the corner->>0.0, ex:120/100 where 100 is x-> and 120 is y-> but,exist another one,is -Z-(where Z reprezint axe in this coordonate,y m not explain corect in english,but you are understand the point.
Finaly, y work now for decrypt *.pba file,y search everything on net,but nothing,y think on this program,cant't extract the dat on the *.pba format is call [pirahnya extractor for windows] is posible to resolv the problem,becouse the *.pba is custom extension not a uzual extension.Y try to rename on *.tif by the *.pba extension,and program work,and y extract data verry easy.
Not find any doc. for .pba file,and y dont now what header format is.
Now is in germany,but tommorow i return home,and y try this program on*.pba extension on game.
Verry sorry for my english,y m verry tired but will see tomorow,by all.
Originally posted by sick
@m, shall i post that pic you drawed before this one?:p
anyway, 3 words for you @m (in dutch):
Pay attention on those and it wont look like your 3 year old bro drew it:p
No need to post that one, it's old, I have a new one with new outlines of what a possible editor sh/could include. I am aware that it's not a fancy drawing, it's just some sketching and drawing has never really been my cup of tea.
I don't think you will find any info about the .pba files on the net. It's probably a file format that Pyro Studios created and only works with their engine. Perhaps Jare can be so friendly to explain some more of it...
btw the link to your ftp doesn't work.
for me neither. also tried ws_ftp...
making a account for us should help.
02-08-2004, 05:50 AM
if you pay attention in web of pyro, pyro studios looks for people who know to use 3D Studio Max, therefore PBA you case out must of being plugin of the program
02-08-2004, 08:42 AM
Sorry for my ftp,now is work.
02-08-2004, 10:08 AM
Looks terribly complicated from the screenshots ;)
02-08-2004, 10:46 AM
Is verry easy Centurion,first you have a load a single-player mision ex:SP_RIVER ARAR.MIS,now apear on the screen map,enemy position,structure position etc....In right panel apear units and structure coordonates value:x=is up and down,y=is left and rights,and z=is axe on the map,depends where is village or units position.Now you cant' remove this units,structure position etc..:and insert the position for players.Editor generated automaticaly position on players. Ex:
*POSICION 135.5 0 125.5
Now editor read the coordonate on village,and placed players on face village.Edit the number of players and finaly you save the
mss.file automaticaly in mision folder.Now you have the arhive file,on pak extension and copy the file in data folder and you can't play the mision.:) .
For Jason Novak question:
Jason is posiblle insert the FORTRESS in the map?y try to make,but only the guarnicion apear in the game,and walls not apear.Y read the Def.Structure in the Def.folder, here is cfg.for fortress.But y think only the >pba file resolv problem.
What do you say about this guestions Jason?
02-08-2004, 03:11 PM
I don't think you can put a fortress in via the scripts. The walls are part of the terrain in the PBA files, only the door appears as a seperate object that you can modify in the scripts.
02-08-2004, 03:14 PM
btw, I just took a look at your map editor, I think it looks pretty good, looks like it could make map editing a lot quicker.
02-08-2004, 03:22 PM
Thanks Jason,you right,not work. And i dont now what Pyros not respond by mail?i hear about,moore people(fans)send mail to Pyros but no answers,so bad,Praetorians is beautyfull game,and so moore fans you like it.
02-08-2004, 03:29 PM
Pitbull i recieved your last email with the screenshots of the editor although i was not able to recieve email from the time of your last email untill now. I've fixed the problem so we can still exchange email, also do you have msn messenger?
I started writing out what ive found in the format so far. However im becoming a bit worried as there appears to be some inconsitences. There appears to be some different versions of the format as the header differs slightly, this is not uncommon for a game format to undergo slight changes but is making my hob harder.
02-13-2004, 10:20 PM
I havent found alot of time to work but today I am happy to report that I am making progress ( its all so confusing to me :0 ). I've attached one model that I was able to import by taking only the data needed for the triangles and vertices and then with the plugin i've written import it into milkshape. I chose the assault tower because it was fairly simple. More to come hopefully :)
02-16-2004, 12:16 PM
I have progressed some more (slowly) and have been able to import texture cordiantes as well :)
Nice work! Keep it coming :)
very nice work, i wish capable to do this!
02-17-2004, 06:14 PM
I dont have any new screenshots but I thought I would like to update you. I have made leaps and bounds in the past few days and think I am close cracking the final nut :D
To give you an idea i've decoded about 90% of the header (only a few bytes im unsure of). Ive learned alot about how states are stored but still need to work out some things. I'd say im about 70% done on the whole format. I'd also say I probably was at around 30% done a few days ago. Sorry if im not making any sense im just stoked I never thought i'd make so much progress. I just need to keep steady and slowly get more piece by piece. No one jinx me :eek:
till the next update :cool:
I am already looing forward to it!!!
It would be awesome if this works for Comandos too. My fav. game.:)
02-19-2004, 08:57 PM
Let me know if you need some help coming up with something to automatically extract and import models into the data files. I don't know much about 3D models, but if I have the two different formats I should be able to convert between them.
03-01-2004, 09:18 PM
:D :D :D :D
Dont ask why its green, must be some texture problem of some sort i'll have to work it out. Sorry I didn't get a more glorius shot but I couldn't wait to fix the problem to show you all. Ahh it was great all that hard work and poof first try to get it in game succedes, simply awseome. I still have stuff I need to fix but I thought i'd drop by and give you an update since it's been a while from my last one.
03-02-2004, 03:59 AM
Yes an Elephant!! niec work Pauldis!! good ot know that you guys are still owrking on Praetorians, I might have ot reinstall it.... hmmm!
That thing looks exactly the same as the elephant in Commandos 2:D
(PS to Jason: I will mail you soon;) )
03-05-2004, 05:07 PM
I was able to fix the animation! Before it was so messed up you couldnt even make out what it was supposed to represent. Also, I fixed the texture problem! It turned out to be a normal problem, once I found out what was wrong I was able to fix it right away ;)
Whats left to be done:
Figure out how to do archers
Test some collision stuff(doesnt behave 100% corectly)
for those who crave screenshots :
ps: should I make the elephant grey instead :D
03-06-2004, 04:21 AM
Good work man,
I think the elephant shoudl be grey so it stands out more on the desert maps. What sorta stats you got for the elephant? like how many health points does it have/stamina. Who can buidl it? everyone? How much does it cost to create?
Where can i find all the pba files?
I think i forgot to extract the pak file containing them but im too lazy to check out which one it is:D
Also, is it possible to insert a catapult which is on fire for example?
03-06-2004, 05:26 PM
The pba files are in obj.pak. I was thinking of having 1 elephant cost 1 honour and 24 men taking 1 minute to make, so almost the same as cavalry. Maybe 5000 hitpoints or so, i'll have to play with it to find a good balance. As for terrain it will go every where :p. No really I dont plan to have it go in trees but shallow water yes, so basicly the same as pikemen. Also I plan on having 3-4 archers on its back, this will keep archer cavalry from tearing them up. I'm going to start the animation which may take awhile, once im finished i'll release this so all can play with it, simply to show that it is possible to create new models.
Thought i'd add an update screen while im at it ;)
03-07-2004, 05:39 AM
Man good work Pauldis, its coming along nicely, hey since it takes up properties of an Equity does it replace the calvary? or is there a whole new recruitment button in the panel when you click on a village?
03-07-2004, 11:29 AM
Paudls is made a good work. We are working in new race Carthaginens for MoD Imperial.
Im very happy to see that so many ppl here are interested in modding!
A few weeks ago I thaught Prae was about to "die." But I think Pauldls will save this great game! From the pics I saw from the editor it looks like a very user friendly program. I'm sure many people will use it.
Praetorians will live once more!
03-07-2004, 12:21 PM
You guys are working on a whole new nation !!? :eek: will the MoD be compatible with singleplayer or is it only multiplayer?
Keep up the good work guys!
03-08-2004, 12:55 PM
Wow this is amazing, I haven't really paid any attentions to these forums in better half of a year, and just one day when I'm bored I see this...
Good to see that there is still interest in the game, keep up the good work.
03-09-2004, 08:04 AM
In january i launched the MoD Imperial with new race greeks. This is compatible with single and multiplayer. If you want to download this, go to www.mod.clan-gd.com (http://mod.clan-gd.com)
Now we are working in new maps, new race carthaginens, and new music!!
03-09-2004, 01:52 PM
KK, the mod and these new units has convinced me to reinstall Praetorians, gotta grab the patch first though :) :)
03-09-2004, 02:33 PM
Wow, that MOD for Greece is absolutely amazing!! good work man, i love the music you put in for the title too, and the AI seems much tougher than since I last played (yes yes I lost a game to the AI ;) )
03-10-2004, 05:01 AM
this saturday i launched new music for the mod (no obligatory download)
After MoD Imperial will work in new maps (totally) and new race carthaginens.
when i started to work in mod imperial in october, the work was only me.
Now in mod imperial work 4 persons (paulds, fer, jurj and me). This is better :D:D
Now in mod imperial work 4 persons
Lets make it five, I would like to join! :D
Im working on a mod site now, but that doesnt means I dont have enough time for modding. Worked on a mod site before but that was for Commandos. Now its all for Praetorians. I just love this game!:cool:
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