To all skinners out there:
Give ModView a spin. it's an awesome program that will make skinning a lot faster and easier. How many times have you had this problem?:
You finish editing your skin, create a pk3, move it to the right folder, load the game and your textures are misaligned or the colors don't match. Annoying and time-consuming, right? Or this one?:
You make a kick-ass skin and people can't see the crappy in-game screenshot and don't download it or give it a crappy rating. What a pain in the @$$, huh?
That's why you should try ModView. You can have Photoshop and modview open at the same time and look at the skin AS YOU EDIT IT!!
You can also rotate the model to look at it from every angle or got really close to it to look at small details.
Well, without further ado, here's the tutorial:
First, you need to extract the files from the following pk3s:
Create a new folder for that purpose, and in that folder, create another one and name it BASE. Put the files there, making sure the folder structure is preserved. Delete the folders with numbers, like:
models1, models2, etc.
Open ModView and click file>open. go to your folder and navigate to the models/characters folder (for player skins) or models/weapons (for weapon skins). You'll see that it has a folder for each model. Open the folder of the model you want to skin and click on the .glm file. It has the same name as the folder where it resides. Example:
fat.glm is in the FAT folder, mp5.glm is in the MP5 folder, etc.
Once it opens up, you'll see it on the main screen. use the mouse to move the model.
to rotate, hold the left button and drag.
to zoom, hold the right button and drag.
to reposition, hold ALT and drag.
to change the background color, click edit>choose background color.
to take a screenshot, SHIFT+C.
to copy the screen so you can paste it in photoshop, CTRL+C, switch to photoshop and paste it on an existing file or create a new file (CTRL+N) and paste it (CTRL+V).
Open the folder and drag the skins into photoshop to edit them. once you're happy with the results, save it, but DO NOT CLOSE IT!!
Switch to ModView and refresh the texture (ALT+R). The new texture will be on the model! At this stage, you need to start tweaking. Go back to photoshop, tweak the skin, save and go back to ModView and refresh the texture. Repeat until you're happy with the results.
For players, you need to create a g2skin file.
How to get your new skin in the game.
Let's take the MP5 as an example.
Once you have finished your skin, create a new folder. Anywhere.
Open it and create a new folder inside it. Name it MODELS.
Create a new folder in MODELS and name it WEAPONS.
And finally, create a new folder in WEAPONS and name it MP5.
Put the skin file (mp5.png) in it.
Go back to the first folder. The one with MODELS in it.
Create a new zip (win98) or compressed folder (XP)
put your MODELS folder in it.
Rename it to whatever you want and change the extension to pk3.
Move the pk3 into the Soldier of Fortune 2/base/mp folder.
Create a new game and see your skin in action.
This was written assuming you know how to create new folders and change extensions and also how to use a graphics editor. I can teach you how to skin, but I'm not gonna teach you how Windows works or how to edit graphics here. That's a different tutorial.
I wrote this from memory. If you find some mistakes or confusing parts, please feel free to ask here.