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How to create custom characters with just Blender

Welcome to the tutorial! Today you will be needing:
NNS Blender Plugin

If you do not have these, you can get them, Blender is easy to find, and NNS Blender plugin link is here

1. Starters

You want to import a model that is low poly. It should not be more than 200-220 tris. You can use an actual character as a baseline, then convert it as a dae in Apicula.

As shown here, I am using toad as a base:

Your model should be completely triangulated. If not, go into Edit Mode, hit A, then hit CTRL+T. This will completely triangulate the model.

Your model should also have its hands in a complete T, as shown here:

2. Texturing

Here are some things you should know about the textures.

* It should not be over 64x64 in size to not blow VRAM.
* You don't have to make face expressions, though it adds more realism to your character.

3. Rigging

To make an armature, hit Shift+A and click Armature. Then go into edit mode, click on the dot at the top, then bring it down to the character's bottom (If it is too small, of course.) Then you can hit E and begin making more bones and naming them to your likings.

Your bones could look something like this:

Now it's time for the actual process, Rigging. This will not be hard, as you do not have as much bones.

You can begin rigging here if you do not know how: this tutorial will help you rig.

4. Exporting as IMD

Before you export as IMD, make sure you do this so the character will not explode. Select the model, CTRL+A, All Transforms. Do it for the armature as well.

After that, you will need to go to your materials tab in your model. Create a new NNS Material, and set it to Textured+Normals. Enable Fog and Light0.

Then, you need to get TGAConv, which you can get here.

Open up TGAConv, and open up your png file.

Hit CTRL+P and click on Generate Palette. Then hit Apply.

You can choose from 16 or 256 colors. For me, I will be choosing 256 colors (16 colors is most recommended).

Then you need to export. Hit CTRL+E and click export. After that, name it to whatever you want!

You then go back into Blender, and import your TGA file. Do not import the PNG.

Now you are ready to export your model. Go to File > Export > Nitro Intermediate

After that, export. You need to convert to nsbmd and nsbtx with G3dcvtr.

You then replace the following files G3D gave you with the character you want to replace.

After that; your character should look something like this:

If there is something wrong with your character, you can get help in this discord server.

Then after, you must make animations.

5. Creating the Animations

You need 4-5 animations. A win animation, a spin animation, a losing animation, and a drive animation. You can make a extra one for the menu.

Let's go ahead and make an example animation with the drive animation.

For the drive animation, you'll need something like 24 or 72 frames. Also, set the start to 0 for every animation you're going to make.

Go into pose mode for this. On the first frame, make your character touching the steering wheel, and as well turning right. For the middle frame (for our case 12), just make your character look straight. Then, for the last keyframe, which is 24, you just make your character turning right. To make a keyframe, select all the bones by hitting A, and hit I to get this dropdown. Click Rotation.

Once you are proud of your animation, export it as a ICA! Before you do export as ICA, make sure you apply all transforms for both the armature and the model, as well as going in Object Mode instead of Pose Mode.. Then export it in the G3d folder.

Drag your ica to the g3d application, to make it a nsbca. You are now able to put this in the folder and replace the animation.

After the animations are done, your character is finished! You made your first character.

Last edit by Oddzoff on Mon Mar 08 13:27:41 CST 2021