Hello all, hoping for some help on a project of mine.
I have recently decided I wanted to create a custom character model for replacing one of the survivors in L4D/L4D2. I’ve spent a few days picking away at the process and I’m stuck on one part I can’t find any information regarding. That specific part is setting up the model’s bones. To be able to import the model I’m trying to do, I need a bone structure setup in the standard T pose. Since the L4D bones out of the decompiled models are not in the same T pose I need, I cannot just simply place my mesh over the existing bones.
My T posed model
L4D2 T posed model
During my time picking at the process of completing this project. I have been able to successfully decompile a model from L4D, import into Milkshape 3D 1.8.4, Max 8 and/or XSI Mod Tool (6.01 and 7.5), modify it, export it, and recompile with no issues at all. For example Zoey from L4D, brought her into L4D2 modified slightly without issue.
So with the above knowledge I have been attempting to get my model into the game. The problem lies in either creating the bone structure from scratch, rigging it to the mesh from scratch and then skinning it for bone weights myself or utilizing an existing bone structure and rigging it to the mesh from scratch then skinning it myself, or using Max, or XSI to do some automatic enveloping for the mesh/bone/skin process. The end result in any program, whether I use the existing bones, created from the ground up or even the “Guide” within the Valve tools in XSI… Is that it results in something along the lines of this.
These screenshots are from the HL Model Viewer in the L4D2 SDK (Also results the same ingame).
Not every method of weighting the vertex and bone creation will result in the above image, some are DRASTICLY worse, some are better. The closest I’ve been able to achieve is having the model in the right position, with all the joints (shoulder, knee, elbow, etc) being twisted by x y z -90 180 0 or something really close to that.
Now, I’ve followed multiple tutorials on this whole process, I’m including the links below…
http://www.mrlanky.com/ (just a source for working custom models, to see what they should be when done)
http://ubtri.blogspot.com/ (another source for finished models to see if I’m missing anything)
http://s-low.info/forum/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=122 (another finished model for reference)
There may be other things that I’ve followed off of L4DMods.com’s forums, but ultimately I can achieve everything, but the bones part. Is there something I just simply don’t know? Missed a key step at some point?
Below I’m including the reference .smd file, the .qc file and anything else I found useful to help with this process. I’ll also note that I don’t have the mesh skinned to the bones in these models, because I’ve since scrapped what I had fully compiled (because of the deformed results). The bones are also not named appropriately to work with the L4D animations yet.