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Texture Editing Tutorial

By Izzy

This article is a step by step introductory in the creation of texture-edited units for Age of Mythology. The tool being used for this walkthrough is Ykkrosh's AOMed, which you can download at this location. (1.26 MB) If you haven't already downloaded the editor, please take the time to do so now. This article only edits texture maps, nothing else. Unfortunately, transparencies are not editable either. And before you go on, please take note that I was not the first one who started AOM texture editing, people such as Ykkrosh himself, The King of Cheese and ra5946, did this many days before me, so I in no way should be taking all the credit.

If you have any questions regarding this article, please feel free to e-mail Shanks13 or post in our modding forum.

1. Let's start off by extracting the all the .DDT's (AOM's texture file format) from the texture.bar file. (Note: If you know how to do this already, please skip down to step 2) To do this, first, run AOMed. Once AOMed is open, press the "Set Input Data File" button. Now, it should open a prompt window, look for your AOM main directory and look for the file "textures.bar". This file should be in the folder "Textures". When you find it, click on it, and press open. This should bring you back to the AOMed program, and it should have given you a default extraction folder. You can change what folder you want all the files to be extracted to, (should be about 2800 when done), then press "Read Data File". This should start up a matrix style looking window with green text; leave it alone, because it will take a while. When it's done, you'll know.

2. By now you should have a huge folder of ~2000 DDT files. Let's start modding. Now what you want to do is find the texture of a unit that you want to edit. Note that this does not edit the parameters of the unit, but only what it'll look like. I use heroes because it's less of a headache to edit, but you can use whatever. Units in AOM don't have one separate texture maps, they have a body map, a head map and a decay map, and some have shield maps. A toxote has several head maps because of its upgrades, and several body maps because of its enhancements through the ages. That's why I used heroes; they have only one head file and one body file. But myth units almost all have just one map for the both the body and the head.

3. For my first mod, I used Hero Jason because he's very generic looking model. I recommend you separate the files you want to edit into a fresh new folder on your desktop, or wherever you like to store things. Now that you've found the unit you want to edit, we shall proceed to convert files into bmps; to do this you need to use the "Direct File conversion" button. So, start up AOMed, and press the "direct file conversion" button. This should bring up a window, and look for the files that you want to change. (Please note that you shouldn't use the bulk conversion.)

4. Once you find the file you want to convert, it should prompt you with a window saying "Converting to BMP - select an output file in the following window". Do so, and extract these files into the new folder you created for your DDTs. Now once you got this saved, (Note that this is probably where most people mess up) a new prompt window will appear, be sure to write all this info down, because you will need it later on. Don't discard it. If you're converting multiple files (you should be if you're editing a human unit), type it out onto a text file, and be sure to label each of the prompts so that you don't mix them up.

5. When you're done converting all of these files, load them up into paint, PSP, PS or whatever image editor you use, and color them and edit them however. Most files are split into two, the top is the texture, and the bottom signifies where the player colors go. The black area is like a silhouette of where the textures go, the white area stands for where the player colors go. Also note that you can resize textures so that they are of higher resolution, but they MUST be of a power of two. So if it was a 100x100 file, it can go up to 200, then 400, then 800, etc. The map to the right is a texture map of Hero Jason's body. Also take note if the file doesn't have a silhouette, then it can't have any player color.

6. Once you're finished, save the file. Don't turn it into a .tga or a .DDT manually keep it as a .BMP, all needed conversion will be done through the editor.

7. To convert the file back into DDT, open up AOMed, and press "Direct File conversion", and look for your file. It should prompt you into where you want to save the file. When you find the destination point you want, press "save". A new window should open up with a bunch of selectable formats of the DDT (image to the left). Now, open up that text file with your DDT's all written down, and choose the format of the corresponding file you're converting. Then press OK. Also, choose the amount of mip-map levels. When you're done, it should say "conversion finished". 8. Now, you should do this to all files that edited. When you want to check out the mod in game, move the files to your "Age of Mythology\textures" folder. Then run AOM, the unit you changed should be edited with the new skin you made.

Congratulations! You just made a texture mod. If you have any questions, or suggestions, or if you want to correct me on anything, e-mail Shanks13.