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EFX: Sizing
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How to resize fx
Resizing your Efffects

adapted from IAM.

... you know how to add the fire effect to your map... the problem is, you want the fire to fit in a very specific spot o­n your map (in today's tutorial, a barrel). Unfortunately, the fire effect you wish to use (in this tutorial, tinybon.efx) is way too big for our barrel:

user posted image

Lets resize it so it fits well in the barrel then!

Start by adding a barrel model to your map. Place it so that the center of the barrel correspond to the x,y coordinates you used in the "Adding FX" tutorial, note the new "z" value (near the top of the barrel). Update your GSC file with this new coordinate so that the fire effect will appear near the top of the barrel.

Now, we don't want to screw the original tinybon.efx effect, so we'll make a new smaller o­ne, from the original o­ne.

Step 1
Create a folder called "fxfire" in your "main" CoD directory.

Step 2
Open mainpak5.pk3 (I'm using Winzip here...) and find the file "tinybon.efx". If you sort the files by path, it'll be easier to find (look for the "fx/fire" paths). o­nce you found the file, extract it in the "mainfxfire" folder you created o­n Step 1

Step 3
Rename the file you extracted o­n Step 2 to anything you wish, for this tutorial we'll call it "myBarrelFire.efx".

Step 4
Specify the new name of our new effect (myBarrelFire.efx) in your GSC file, then save and close it, we wont need that anymore.

Step 5
Open "mainfxfiremyBarrelFire.efx" in your preffered text editor (I'm using UltraEdit32, awesome editor!!!).

Now the fun part...
For 2 consecutive nights I've been testing and playing with the parameters of this effect and I think I figured out most of the parameters.

An efx file contains "particle" sections. The particles are basically what makes the effect live. An efx file should contain as many "Particle {}" sections as there are shaders used for the effect. Our myBarrelFire.efx uses 3 shaders so the efx file contain 3 "particle {}" sections.

Shaders used:

QUOTE
gfx/effects/fire/smallfill.tga
gfx/effects/fire/top.tga
gfx/effects/fire/hotspot.tga



Here are some basic explanations of *some* of the parameters used in this efx file. I'm pretty new to the world of mapping/modding so bare with me about the wording/terminology...

'count' [int] or [int int]
This is a number or range that will determine how many of this particle will be drawn. If you set 'count' to 5, it will draw 5 particles, if you set it to 3 5, it will randomly draw this particle between 3 and 5 times.

'life' [int] or [int int]
This is the duration this particle remains visible. The higher the value, the longer it will take for this particle to fade away.
Value can be a single int or a int range.

'origin' [z x y z x y]
Now this o­ne is tricky to explain. The origin determines where this particle will start. The coordinates specified in your GSC file (where the effect should appear o­n your map) are the 0,0,0 point for this particle origin. Try to think about it this way, an effect uses its own separate grid (z,x,y) INSIDE your map grid and its 0,0,0 point is detemined by the coordinates specified in the GSC file. Hope some of you get it. The screenies shown farther in the tut should clear things up a bit.

'rotation' [int int]
Rotation is a range used to determine this particle rotation when its drawn. A random value of that range is generated. That way, the particle doesn't "look" the same each time its drawn.
Example, you set the rotation to 360 -360. A random number of that range will be generated, lets say, 240. When the particle is drawn, it will be rotated 240 degrees.

'rotation delta' [int int]
Makes this particle rotates while its being displayed o­n screen. Gives the particle a "turning around" animation effect.

'velocity' [z x y z x y]
This is a set of coordinates that determines the effect "envelope" size. Just like 'origin' parameter, its 0,0,0 point is based o­n the coordinates specified in the GSC file of this effect.

'size' [int] or [int int]
Size is used to determine the size of this particle.
The value of size can be a single int, or an int range.
In case of a range, a random number of that range is generated to determine the size of this particle.
Size has a start and end paramter. Start being the size of the particle when it appears o­n screen while end is the size of the particle when it fades out.

'shaders'
This is simply the TGA file that will be used to draw this particle. They are located in pak5.pk3, "/gfx/effects".

There a lot more parameters used in the different effect files but I haven't played with them yet...

Ok, now that we know a bit about the effect parameters, lets modify the o­nes that will make our fire effect smaller.

First particle section:

ORIGIN
Change the 'origin' so that it fits the spot you wish the effect to start from. The two set of coordinates specified here will determine the space from which the effect will "origin" from.

For this tutorial, I set 0 5 5 5 -5 -5. What does this mean? It means it will "create" a space the size of the specified coordinates. These coordinates being the opposite corners of "box".
The effect will then start somewhere between the space.

(note that the grid is not to scale o­n these images)
The yellow box is the space created by our origin:
For some reasons, it looks like the effect grid is Z,X,Y...
user posted image

user posted image

VELOCITY
Change the velocity to your liking. As per the description above, the velocity is the size of your effect "envelope". It uses the same concept as the origin to determine the space size so we wont go in too much details and images.
For this tutorial, I set my velocity to: 10 10 10 65 -10 -10

SIZE
I changed the start size to: 3 7
I changed the end size to: 11

And thats it for our first particle.

Now, do the same for the 2 remaining particles.
Here are the values I used in my efx file:

Particle 2
origin 0 5 5 10 -5 -5
rotation delta 10 -10
velocity 5 4 4 40 -4 -4
(size) start 5 10
(size) end 12 15

Particle 3
count 2
life 1500 2000
rotationDelta 10 -10
velocity 6 0 0 2 0 0

Thats it. Save your new effect file, set your GSC file to use this effect file instead of the tinybon.efx o­ne and you should obtain this in your map:

user posted image

In comparison to the original fire effect, here's what it looks like:

user posted image


I hope this helped a few people figure out how to work with effect files.
This can be applied to any effects available. You might also want to try and create you very own effects...

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