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Hmm... someone needs to make a conversion for some existing flight sim, or combat sim of some sort. Combat Flight Sim 3 could possibly work for complex transformation animations, since the game uses loads of model animation that's assigned to different keystrokes, but no missiles, and obviously no spaceflight involved would limit it. It's all flight... you'd need a cross between a flight sim and something like Mechwarrior, and an engine that could switch between control setups.

Btw, I don't know for sure if that model would work in any game I know of.. I don't think that's the full polygon wireframe in that picture. All the games I've ever modded required that the models be made entirely of triangle faces, otherwise you get nasty distortions if the faces aren't perfectly flat. Some games will support quad-faces, but not like that. Those look more like control polygons, made up of multiple triangles, not individual faces. A lot of times, the contours of a model depend on which way you divide a quadrilateral space between two triangles... you can divide any quad two ways, contouring depends on picking the right direction for the shape you're modeling.. it's a royal pain, and for me, usually involves drawing individual faces, one at a time, until the shape looks right. I tried nurbs modeling, but I just couldn't get the control over the shape that I wanted. That whole YF-19 was made by me drawing the main contours with polylines, then filling in the space with individual triangles. If I ever learn to model with surfaces and such, I'll probably be very happy... I just haven't gotten to it yet. :p

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yeah you can just triangulize it, polygon rebuild,

then clean up some messes... i think MOST people would build things with quads to start with.

i know that there's a SDF mod for Homeworld, and it looked fcking nice :)

i don't know if there's anything besides the SDF1 in it but it's good enough for me.

also Freespace 2 source is public domain now, so that would be an Excellent engine to use if we can find some good programmers. I played a Macross mod for Freespace 2 before it went open source and it was amazing. When you unleash 32 hornet missiles on a target and they explode in a brilliant trail of firey destruction right behind your fleeing prey, it's just too beautiful. :)

Edited by silentrage

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hey i was thinking, if you wanna model a transformable valk, then you'd have to model certain parts separately right? wouldn't it be problematic to try and get the aerodynamic streamline of the jet when piecing them together?

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(Ok, warning.. I'm gonna ramble. I tend to do this a lot. To get my point skim to the last paragraph.)

Mainly, that depends on which plane you want to model. Considering the accuracy of the 1/48 valks, there shouldn't be any problem making a VF-1, since they obviously work in real life, and look like they may fly.... although I'd hate to imagine the turbulence generated by the arms underneath.. not aerodynamic at all really. In fact, it's likely that most of these planes wouldn't really fly, without VERY advanced avionics systems to counteract the instability of the designs.

Anyway, getting the proportions correct can be a pain on some of them, especially the Mac+ ones.. They're very complex transformations, and although they can be done in real life, like the few transformable kits have proven, it's VERY hard to keep the proportions of one mode correct without fouling up the other modes. The fighter mode of the YF-19 is just beautiful in my opinion, but honestly, the Yamato 1/72 transforming version doesn't do the design justice. One of my friends commented that the fighter mode of the Yamato looked more like a bloated goose than an aircraft, and I could see what he meant. The intakes and rear fuselage are way too thick for the size of the plane. It looks very out of proportion in fighter mode to me... not at all like the Hasegawa fighter-mode model. Certain aspects of the aircraft had to be sacrificed to make a viable robot mode that would stand on its own. Now, on the other hand, I've seen people who converted the Hasegawa kit so that it DID transform.. I have no idea how. But I couldn't find pics of the battroid or gerwalk modes, so I can't tell you how they turned out. I could only tell because of the gaps between parts, and the places where hinges had been placed.

The main problem here is that these aircraft literally are not possible in our world. I'm guessing you've probably seen the way the wings of the YF-21 worked. They literally could change shape, almost like a bird's wing, which can change individual feathers to change its shape. If that wing can do that, I would assume that they could apply that technology to other parts of the aircraft, changing the shapes of various parts to fit together like an organic being, instead of a rigid metal airframe. This can't be done in real life obviously, but you can do it on the computer. In order to get the best proportions for all the modes, you may have to scale certain parts during the transformation.. in the case of the YF-19 you may need to shrink the nose and enlarge the head for it to appear correctly in battroid mode, after being in fighter mode. It's a balance.

To start off, modeling the separate parts is probably a good idea. The VF-1 is pretty blocky overall, and fits together simply, so it shouldn't be hard to get the parts to transform correctly. Starting in fighter mode is probably best, since that's where the fitting of the joints is crucial.. you can make the fuselage one piece, then break it later so it folds. The YF-19 is an entirely different story. I don't fully understand it's transformation to begin with, since I've never seen any examples. But the shape is so flawlessly smooth, it's difficult to tell where the joints are. You can see the lines for the joints, yes, but there's no physical break in the curvature of the surface. This thing demands you build it in one piece, then break it up later.. and that can be a problem, since the parts later have to all break apart, and turn into a correctly proportioned battroid. From the other end, if you build the model first as a correctly proportioned battroid, you might be up a creek when you attempt to fit the parts together to make the fighter. Sheesh, even the Yamato has that problem, with the joints and fuselage not coming together all the way. It's a big tradeoff that depends on what you want to do. If you want an accurate battroid, the plane probably won't fit together. If you build a nice fighter, the battroid may have a tiny head and limbs that don't look beefy enough. :huh:

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Hey gang!!

I've been SUPER busy in work!! Loads of overtime and no thanks! Damn games industry!!

As a result I haven't had any quality time with my valk or a chance to check in with you guys...

Great to see yez are still hard at it!

Brian76: Damn man! Sorry to hear 'bout yer crash dude! Happened to me a while back too... not good!

Dok/Dat: Stuff is really coming along eh? Looks great too...

Astek: Hope you enjoy 'ol blighty!! Might see ya around...

OK... In response to silentrage's game question CHECK THIS OUT!!! :o

http://www.the-magicbox.com/game090503b.htm

Check out the movies! VERY nice VF-1 models!! Very nice...

I'm hoping to get back to my model next week so I'll post some progress shots dor us to squiz at...

L8R!

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lol, man i happen to know EXACTLY why the yf19 kit won't work.

i challenged a friend of mine last year to a YF19 modelling contest,

he used the kid instructions, i used the design work references.

Turns out that his model looked more like a transformer,

i mean that thing is SO far from the actual model it's not even funny.

and i've never seen the YF19 transformation sequence in detail,

I assume there's a page of that somewhere on the macross design works?

can someone hook that up? and the yf21 too if you got it, i just wanna see how impossible they seem :)

btw i've never done this but i think animating scaling while transforming is just suicide... it's too many things to keep track of.

unless you position your cameras very "strategically."

argh, those macross game links are fxxored.

but DAMN! You have any idea how hyped I am about this game from reading the descriptions?

SEGA is making it!!! frakking RIGHTS!! If I can put my trust in ANYONE to make the right macross game, it'd be sega. :) let's hope it plays as good as it looks.

Edited by silentrage

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This is something I've been working on and off for a couple of months now.

Well its way off from being done, so please be gentle.

But the whole reason for this post is to show what happens when you transform the yf-19 without morphing some of the pieces. Mainly the fuselage.(Which is too long in all the models BTW, is much shorter in macross plus) Hmm i used the background images you see for the fighter model references.

well heres the yf-19 in fighter mode.

post-5-1064121851_thumb.jpg

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And heres the Batroid mode.

Yeah i think this is an abomination. of everything that's holy in life. :p

post-5-1064122289_thumb.jpg

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Heres how it looks like when i push the backpack thing up.

Dammit I hit the worng button :blink:

Edited by mk16

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and heres an animation. Wich better illustrates the problem, and i think some people wanted to see the plane transforming. Well everything you see in the transformation is there in the animation and in the designworks book. I just havent spent the time making it look better ^^;

I didnt use divx so it should work everywhere. and the download isnt really big either.

animation.zip

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Just a quick colour/comp test with the VF-4... No pilot yet and I still have to texture it! Interesting point to note is how much model detail you lose when compositing with a photo. Its quite easy to get distracted into modeling and texturing in unnecessary details (but we love it I suppose!)

I'll start texturing this sucka soon... yikes! :(

post-5-1064150578_thumb.jpg

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Guys I've got good news and bad news concerning my VF-1 project.

Good news: I've now got plenty of time to work on my CG stuff because.....

Bad news: I"ll be unemployed in two days.

The store I was working at was shut down earlier this month and once the merchandise transfers are done on Tuesday, I'm job hunting. :angry::angry::angry:

I'm not a happy camper.

So expect a few updates fairly soon.

Here's where I left off:

post-5-1064198600_thumb.jpg

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Just to let ya'll know I'm still alive and kickin' I thought I'd throw some of the Old WIP VF-4 pics into the thread. Nothing new yet, but stay tuned.

Booyah01.jpg

Booyah04.jpg

Battroido.jpg

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OK guys,

need a few tips on how best to render the "boost" from the feet and fast packs when flying. interested in what the best shape would be as well as how to make that white with blue fringing effect I generally see in these.

Thanks!

:Dat

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OK guys,

need a few tips on how best to render the "boost" from the feet and fast packs when flying. interested in what the best shape would be as well as how to make that white with blue fringing effect I generally see in these.

Thanks!

:Dat

Whoa - LOTTA different ways to do this. The hardcore way would be to use particles, with forces to shape the exhaust, and a shader tree to produce the color grading - uh oh - got to abandon the computer to a needy grad student ;) More in a bit...

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yeah you can just triangulize it, polygon rebuild,

then clean up some messes... i think MOST people would build things with quads to start with.

i know that there's a SDF mod for Homeworld, and it looked fcking nice

i don't know if there's anything besides the SDF1 in it but it's good enough for me.

also Freespace 2 source is public domain now, so that would be an Excellent engine to use if we can find some good programmers. I played a Macross mod for Freespace 2 before it went open source and it was amazing. When you unleash 32 hornet missiles on a target and they explode in a brilliant trail of firey destruction right behind your fleeing prey, it's just too beautiful. [\QUOTE]

Hey, where can I find this mod, I've had Freespace 2 for a long time. One of the best space combat sims ever, and it still has stellar graphics.

Edited by Macross_Fanboy

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MK16, I think you may have left out a joint or two in the fuselage.... I'm not sure though. I think it's because of the simplified model. If you built the full head mechanism, it might work out better.. also, I think the shoulder rotation joint is in a little different place, that would put the arms further forward on the chest. I'll have to experiment with my model once it's done. There's got to be a way to do it... after all, I'm still hopeful for a 1/48th yamato YF-19.

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Whoa - LOTTA different ways to do this. The hardcore way would be to use particles, with forces to shape the exhaust, and a shader tree to produce the color grading - uh oh - got to abandon the computer to a needy grad student ;) More in a bit...

Right, back, sorry for the delay, the Other Half had to pull an allnighter writing a paper on the machine. Where were we? Oh right, exhaust...

Okay, here's what I'd do for a simple solution:

Just make a "bulb" shape, like an onion, a candle flame, or a minaret top. parent this to the feet. Create a shader for it. Use MEL (only a little, I promise!) to introduce a random jitter to the following channels: scale, opacity, glow, and the R and G color channels (so that color fluctuates between blue and white).

For slightly more advanced fun, hook up a SamplerInfo node to the transparency channel, specifically map it to the "Facing Ratio" channel of the sampler info node. This will cause the fire-shape to be more transparent at its edges, where it is viewed nearly edge-on, and more opaque in its middle, where we see it front-on. For further adventurousness, also map facing ratio to color R and G channels - now we have a flame that is white in its core, blue towards its fringes....

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Well Chronocidal Could You Point Out What Joints I Have Missed, Im Pretty Sure Thats Everything Needed For The Transformation To Work.

Well The Yf Transformation In Real Life Is Not Impossible. As You Can Se With Most Models. But For The Airplane And Mecha Modes To Work And Have Some Decent Proportions, I Believe That Some Addition To The Transformation Should Be Made. Like In That Hasegawa 1/72 Yf-19 Modified To Convert Into Battroid, Which Btw It Kicks Ass,the Fuselage Has A Joint Just Below The Little Wings And Then It Slides Back Just Enough To Correct The Bad Proportions. But Sadly Its Not A Perfect Transformation, Well Either Way I Would Still Buy It ;).

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Well, that's the problem. I'm not sure you're missing anything... but going from the art on the Mac+ dvd cover, that big close-up of the -19 winding up to punch, you've got the head mounted in the wrong place. It looks like it rotates around and actually pops out of the fuselage ahead of where you have it... I'm not sure of how things work entirely. But I did notice that even on the Yamato -19, the hip joints end up nearly in the center of the forward canards, meaning that the legs do move forward, shortening the waist. Also, you've left off that small black section ahead of the head. I think it actually drops away, and the head rotates into place there, bringing it much farther forward. I'd have to see the Yamato to see how it's done, but I think it would work... it would just take a lot of careful shaping to make sure the model fits together...

Btw, where did you get that YF-19 schematic? I went looking everywhere, but couldn't find a front view. If you could post it for me, I'd be ever so grateful :)

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I see what you mean, well the transformations are just a quick setup. Thanks for the critique im most gratefull. Well sure ill post the schematics ill have all kinds :D. I have to get back home thos since right know in in school.

Ill get back to you in about...hmm five hours i think.

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Whoa - LOTTA different ways to do this.  The hardcore way would be to use particles, with forces to shape the exhaust, and a shader tree to produce the color grading - uh oh - got to abandon the computer to a needy grad student ;)  More in a bit...

Right, back, sorry for the delay, the Other Half had to pull an allnighter writing a paper on the machine. Where were we? Oh right, exhaust...

Okay, here's what I'd do for a simple solution:

Just make a "bulb" shape, like an onion, a candle flame, or a minaret top. parent this to the feet. Create a shader for it. Use MEL (only a little, I promise!) to introduce a random jitter to the following channels: scale, opacity, glow, and the R and G color channels (so that color fluctuates between blue and white).

For slightly more advanced fun, hook up a SamplerInfo node to the transparency channel, specifically map it to the "Facing Ratio" channel of the sampler info node. This will cause the fire-shape to be more transparent at its edges, where it is viewed nearly edge-on, and more opaque in its middle, where we see it front-on. For further adventurousness, also map facing ratio to color R and G channels - now we have a flame that is white in its core, blue towards its fringes....

Dok Gonzo,

do you happen to know how to produce a transparent distortion effect? Like jet wash or matrix style bullet trail?

i been thinking about it and i can't get too far.

i think you can do it with a glass tube, no specular, with facing ratio. For jet wash, attach an animated noise to the displacement node. For bullet trail, a black/white/black/white smooth ramp with value linked to displacement. And maybe augment the offset value of the ramp with a MEL that produces random values between 0.5 and 1.5?

also, i think the way you do the jet exhaust sound pretty cool. It all works in theory but i wanna try it out and see it in action, but how do you create basic MEL scripts like randomizing values and such?

i'm a total noob when it comes to MEL X_X

Macross Fanboy:

I have no idea where to find that mod now. I had it like 2 years ago and i just went on google and searched Freespace Macross Mod

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Whoa - LOTTA different ways to do this.  The hardcore way would be to use particles, with forces to shape the exhaust, and a shader tree to produce the color grading - uh oh - got to abandon the computer to a needy grad student ;)  More in a bit...

Right, back, sorry for the delay, the Other Half had to pull an allnighter writing a paper on the machine. Where were we? Oh right, exhaust...

Okay, here's what I'd do for a simple solution:

Just make a "bulb" shape, like an onion, a candle flame, or a minaret top. parent this to the feet. Create a shader for it. Use MEL (only a little, I promise!) to introduce a random jitter to the following channels: scale, opacity, glow, and the R and G color channels (so that color fluctuates between blue and white).

For slightly more advanced fun, hook up a SamplerInfo node to the transparency channel, specifically map it to the "Facing Ratio" channel of the sampler info node. This will cause the fire-shape to be more transparent at its edges, where it is viewed nearly edge-on, and more opaque in its middle, where we see it front-on. For further adventurousness, also map facing ratio to color R and G channels - now we have a flame that is white in its core, blue towards its fringes....

Dok Gonzo,

do you happen to know how to produce a transparent distortion effect? Like jet wash or matrix style bullet trail?

i been thinking about it and i can't get too far.

i think you can do it with a glass tube, no specular, with facing ratio. For jet wash, attach an animated noise to the displacement node. For bullet trail, a black/white/black/white smooth ramp with value linked to displacement. And maybe augment the offset value of the ramp with a MEL that produces random values between 0.5 and 1.5?

also, i think the way you do the jet exhaust sound pretty cool. It all works in theory but i wanna try it out and see it in action, but how do you create basic MEL scripts like randomizing values and such?

i'm a total noob when it comes to MEL X_X

Macross Fanboy:

I have no idea where to find that mod now. I had it like 2 years ago and i just went on google and searched Freespace Macross Mod

SR,

Your ideas for jet wash and bullet trails sound good and would likely work. But I would tend to do "random/unstructured" distortion in 2D post, using a program like Shake or After Effects and the appropriate filter. Much easier and likely better looking. Air channels left by slow-mo bullets, tho, show regular structure (or at least they did in the Matrix, and dammit that's good enough for me) and are best represented as actual 3D geometry. (Also note that the Matrix effect at least DOES have specular highlights - it almost looks like glass, or that water tentacle from THE ABYSS...) Only thing is, the ripple distortion is a bit more random/noisy than the bump map you describe. I would suggest using a second-order trig function of some sort for a lot of variation and unlimited repetition, or maybe just map the node to something else "noisy" (I found a maya node online once that let you map the waveforms of audio samples, for purposes of simple lip synching - I bet that could be put to use here...)

As for writing scripts, it's a fairly complicated business. But to get started, all you do is right-click in whatever channel box in the Attribute Editor, then select Create New Expression. Expressions are then of the basic format

foo = rand();

or whatever you've got in mind. rand() gives you values between 0 and 1, so modify with artithmetic to yield the range you need...

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argh, i think you better give me some links to beginner MEL scripting.

foo = rand(0,2) or something like that?

i used that waveform node in 3dmax before, and yeah it would definitely work.

i've only used aftereffects for editing text, moving videos and such, i didn't even know it was capable of that kind of 3d image distortion.

Would it be easier to do that kind of stuff with programs like discreet combustion?

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argh, i think you better give me some links to beginner MEL scripting.

foo = rand(0,2) or something like that?

i used that waveform node in 3dmax before, and yeah it would definitely work.

i've only used aftereffects for editing text, moving videos and such, i didn't even know it was capable of that kind of 3d image distortion.

Would it be easier to do that kind of stuff with programs like discreet combustion?

I don't know about easier, but Combustion is definitely more powerful. If you have access to a copy, then go with it. AE's stuff would more properly be called 2.5D - it's actaully almost exactly like working with layers and filters in photoshop, and that's how you'd do this - define a "mask" within which you want to see engine wash, keyframe-animate the shape of the mask, and apply within it something juicy from the Filters menu.

As for MEL tutorials, I actually got started with the one that comes with Maya, it's not bad. Access it by looking up MEL in the Maya help. Good luck!

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Ok guys, alot of the basic modeling is done. A few are parts totally missing here and there. I think i'll make a VF-0D version once the modeling is finished on this one. Textures are going to be a pain in the ass if I want them to match the show. :D

vf-0s_render5.jpg

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Excellent Brian! Ditto.

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