Porting ArmA (1) addon

ArmA 2 editing; configs, modeling, missions, textures, terrain etc.

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Snake Man
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Porting ArmA (1) addon

Post by Snake Man » 2009-06-04, 03:41:56 AM

Porting ArmA (1) addon

I read some initial reports that ArmA 2 will not read those ArmA (1) binarized ODOL models, however this is NOT TRUE. I have succesfully ported my PMC Apache addon which is in binarized ODOL format, only changes I had to do is to replace the version number in "requiredVersion" which was "too new" for ArmA 2 and also change the crew classname from old SoldierWPilot to USMC_Soldier_Pilot class.

The apache works great, no porting problems that I can think of.

Problems start to come when you have complex addons which reference a lot of ArmA textures, configs and even models (usually WRP terrains using ArmA objects). With those you get into the muddy waters.

WRP terrains

For example WRP terrain with custom and ArmA (1) objects, well the custom objects work as is naturally, but all of the ArmA (1) objects need to be replaced with something from ArmA 2 or from custom addons. This is major problem, for example I of course wanted to bring in my 51km desert terrain, but it uses solely the ArmA (1) objects and even the close ground textures (only the one satellite texture is "custom" in the WRP pbo). It is... well to my knowledge impossible to port it as ArmA 2 doesn't have many (if any?) same objects as in Sahrani (I'm just guessing here, but there is none of those desert iraq/mog style buildings).

Otherwise the good old WrpTool 4WVR editing and then binarizing works just fine, nothing has been changed on the engine.

Characters

Soldiers models can be difficult too, for example all VTE models refer quite a lot to the ArmA (1) face and wound textures, which all needs to be now included in the pbo itself.

Weapons

Are quite straight forward ports if they use custom textures. The basic M16 muzzle flash proxy still works ok, so thats good.

Conclusion

So in a way, to me at least, it doesn't matter that much if your addon comes from OFP or ArmA (1), there is still quite a lot of work to do if it uses a lot of OFP/ArmA (1) content. It really depends on the addon, how custom was the custom in it heh.

Actually now that I think of it, the PMC Apache port to ArmA (1) was great, as it is so dead easy to port to ArmA 2 :)

Does anyone have any experience on porting stuff yet, any new knowledge, something to add to the above etc?
Last edited by Snake Man on 2009-06-04, 07:17:56 AM, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: added WRP info
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DMarkwick
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Re: Porting ArmA (1) addon

Post by DMarkwick » 2009-06-04, 06:56:24 PM

Interesting conclusions :)

RE the ArmA1 map buildings & objects, is it at all possible to bring in the relevant PBOs from ArmA1 into ArmA2, perhaps in a mod folder?

Snake Man
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Re: Porting ArmA (1) addon

Post by Snake Man » 2009-06-04, 07:25:57 PM

I made a addon dir for the pbos, copied these following there:

buildings.pbo
Desert2.pbo
desert.pbo
IntroAnims.pbo
plants.pbo
roads.pbo
rocks.pbo
signs.pbo

And launched ArmA 2, there were few errors but it ran ok, I could go into Rahmadi and the city center looked like it did in ArmA (1). Well it looked somehow better, the ArmA 2 engine renders the landscape better, which is alone just so awesome.
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DMarkwick
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Re: Porting ArmA (1) addon

Post by DMarkwick » 2009-06-05, 11:15:55 AM

Oh nice, that is VERY good news :) I'm really pleased to hear that.

A long time back, I heard a dev (Suma?) mention that a major coding error caused slowdowns when rendering vegetation. I wasn't sure whether that meant a shader, or code that deals with shaders. However, they didn't implement the fix into ArmA, instead leaving it for ArmA2.

Can you tell if the performance improvement translates across to the ArmA maps in ArmA2?

Snake Man
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Re: Porting ArmA (1) addon

Post by Snake Man » 2009-06-05, 11:37:34 AM

Well its difficult to say as my old computer was AMD 2800+, 1gb ram, Radeon 9800 pro and it ran ArmA (1) with low detail settings. In there I got pretty nice framerates on my desert terrain and Sahrani ran playable rates, although I never was sahrani fan so I played very little missions there.

Now I have new computer PMC development computer, mid 2009 and my ArmA -> ArmA 2 ported desert terrain runs like greased lighting, I actually didnt test sara, just saralite and it was completely smooth too when flying with 1600m viewdistance on the ... hmm helicopter I think, I just quickly tested but all I can say is that with that hardware, on those normal settings 1.6k viewdistance... slowdowns are things of the past :)

I want to warn you though, while you CAN get to play sahrani/objects just by copying the pbos, you do get enough of errors on the screen at start which you have to click OK to. But surely there will be config fixes for these made, which you need to implement yourself (there is no reason to repack the ArmA files for just small text file fix).

Anyways, there is SO MUCH stuff to discover, we are now at the day one of ArmA (1) addon porting, things will change many times back and forth when we proceed :)
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DMarkwick
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Re: Porting ArmA (1) addon

Post by DMarkwick » 2009-06-05, 12:10:10 PM

Rgr that. I would think the most visible framerate improvements would happen at the northern end of Sahrani, which is rather more "veggy" :) Particularly when scoping through thick vegetation etc.

*edit*
Oh, BTW, the best map I know of is the 3DE map, if I can get ArmA2 to run that better than ArmA1 I'm going to be very very happy indeed :)

WGL.Q
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Re: Porting ArmA (1) addon

Post by WGL.Q » 2009-06-05, 01:54:53 PM

OAC will release an OFP and A1 to A2 class mapping addon.
Soon to be follow by updated A1 pbos ported to A2. 8-)

Snake Man
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Re: Porting ArmA (1) addon

Post by Snake Man » 2010-07-16, 02:49:55 AM

I have just created initial page for PMC Editing Wiki: ArmA to ArmA 2 port. I would very much like to hear comments on it, especially if there is something to correct.

The tutorial is one of those rough outlines which assumes you know few things... but not yet how to port stuff :)

Feel free to suggest how to expand it to "hold my hand and guide me through" type tutorial.
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