Website Update; Skeletal Animation System; Weapon Customization

Some styles of the orbital studios website have been updated (home page, screenshots page, and page navigation menus). Also, the screenshots page has been remade so it will load faster and look better.

A skeletal animation system is currently in development. It only handles transformations as of now, but soon it will be able to use model frames. I’ll use this for first-person animations and for attaching weapons & gear to the player (all player models will use frame animation).

As far as weapon customization options go, players will be able to purchase weapon upgrades for weapons they own using the points they earn in-game. In servers, hosts will be able to choose if these upgrades are usable and/or purchasable during games. In the upgrading menus, a pre-rendered weapon will be shown (unfortunately, a *.png must be made for each combination).

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*.OBJ Separator

I just wanted to announce that there will be a nice feature in OMDTool for handling Wavefront *.obj files – OMDTool will separate the models for you if there are multiple objects or groups in the file. All *.mtl file information will automatically be loaded into the program (color, alpha, texture, and alpha map/alpha channel). The files will not be separated based by material information alone, however. It’s not that it isn’t possible, it’s just that there should be texture repetition anyway and it wouldn’t be hard to separate the model by material in your 3D modeler of choice.

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Slight Progress

Hmmm… haven’t gotten very far lately. I really don’t have any screenshots to show either.

I’m currently working on/getting to:

1. Setting up two maps, “Waterfront” and “Ruins”.
2. Learning about the P3DC DLL (which I will use instead of Kingspace).
3. Setting up the shotgun and flash-bang models.
4. Full transform-list animation, with frame support.
5. Translating the weapon system into the engine playground (I’ll have to rewrite it with data structures instead of arrays).
6. Adding effects to the playground (HDR/Bloom, Volumetric Lighting?, Depth-of-field).
7. A runtime light ray generator (for those beams of light that come though trees, windows, etc).
8. Changing OMDTool to group models in frames; interface re-write.
9. Baking a layer of Ambient Occlusion over the lightmaps texture.
10. OMDTool model referencing (a lightmap will use the exact same geometry, but not the same UVs)

That seems to be it for now…
I promise that I’ll post some screenshots of the maps and new weapons soon. I just have to figure out how to get the Weebly preview on here.

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Another New M4A1 Model

As the title implies, I’ve had to find yet another M4A1 model. I had recently recompiled the previous one incorrectly (the game started running at ~20 fps), and I didn’t have the original Blender file with correct normals. The new model (link here) was created by Twinke Masta of FPSBanana. Screenshots of it in-game can be found here.

Edit: I realized it ran at 20 fps because of a program I had running in the background. However, I would have to re-export the model anyway to add moving parts (like the bolt release).

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Hard Drive Failure; Sandbox/Playground

So, first of all, I’ve been away for a few days backing up my files and reinstalling Windows after my hard drive failed to operate correctly (I got blue screens of death whenever I tried to boot Windows).

It was not fun.

Second of all, I’ve been working on a sandbox/playground, a combination of all the engine components (I like to separate everything into different gmk files for some reason). Check the screens at the orbital studios website. I also added an ammunition counter to the hud, though for some reason I completely forgot to display the number of magazines left… I’ll work on it later.

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Animation Editor

Check the screens over at the Weebly site (, along with some related screens in the OMDTool section. My current approach to animation will use typed in values for transformations for complete control and precision. I did have a mouse-based visual system in place, but it would be too inaccurate for the kind of stuff an animation needs.

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Orbital Studios Website; Shortest Post Ever

The weebly site for orbital studios is officially up and running. You may catch a few bugs or pages under construction (like the products and resources pages) – just ignore them. Link here.

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