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 America's Army Mission Editor Manual & Tutorials 
 

=FoxHunter=

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Posts: 3972
Joined: 17 May 2003

      Posted: 29 Dec 2006 08:14 Profile Netherlands


This topic contains explanations of the most used terms in the AA Mission Editor (AAME) and some very useful links to tutorials and walkthroughs for UnrealEd and the AAME.

Do you have comments or questions, or do you know a link or term that should be added to the list Just send one of the moderators of this forum a PM!


AAME / UnrealEd Terminology
The list below contains common terms and the meaning of those terms:

  • AAO: America's Army's map format
  • Active brush: another name for the red builder brush
  • Actor: object in three-dimensional virtual space
  • Alpha Channel: information contained within an image file that can be used to determine the intensity of different material properties such as opacity and specularity intensity among other things
  • Brush: piece of geometry that builds the virtual space
  • BSP: Binary Space Partition; static data structure method used by game programmers to determine correct front-to-back polygon visibility, so that scenes are rendered realistically
  • BSP Hole: building bug, yields unwanted invisible obstacles and players falling into geometry and dying
  • Canvas: the class in the Unreal engine that is responsible for drawing items directly onto a player's display
  • Class: type of an object, an object's class defines how an object is implemented; derived from or instantiated by an object, from which it inherits clearly defined attributes. A class can contain: static data members, objects of another class, pointers and references to types and objects of the same or another class, declarations of another class, member functions, and friend classes
  • Emitter: an Actor responsible for creating a particle effect
  • Masked: color blending type; makes part of a Texture transparent
  • Mesh: three-dimensional representation of an Actor in virtual space (like weapons, pickups, players)
  • Mover: movable Brush (for doors, elevators and visual effects)
  • MyLevel: a special name for a package; using this tells UnrealEd to embed a resource in the current map file
  • Node: the polys that are seen in Zone/Portal view; they correspond to surface polygons split by BSP cuts
  • Object: abstraction that typically is assigned clearly specified characteristics; in other words, a chunk of data with a certain class associated to it; the class describes the data structure and contains the code that deals with objects of that class
  • Package: a file containing resources for America's Army (like code, decorations, sound, music, maps, or all of it)
  • Pivot: point about which a brush is rotated or scaled
  • Polygon: two-dimensional, flat, closed shape in three-dimensional space, like a brush surface
  • Property: individual item of an object's data; defined by the object's class
  • RGB8: texture format with three channels (red, green, blue) and 8 bits per channel
  • RGB8A: texture format with four channels (red, green, blue, alpha) and 8 bits per channel
  • Sheet: a brush which does not enclose a 3D volume, usually because it's a single polygon
  • Subclass: class derived from another class (its base class, or superclass); inherits properties and methods from the superclass unless they're expressly overwritten
  • Trigger: an actor in a level which, when touched, will activate some effect, or other event
  • Vertex: point in (normally two- or three-dimensional) space; point where polygon edges meet
  • Viewport: window in the AA Mission Editor which shows one view of the map that is loaded; a class in UnrealScript that represents the local player
  • Z-Axis: the third axis in a 3D co-ordinate system; in FPS games, this also refers to things (architectural detail, enemies, etc) being above or below the player
  • Zone: portion of a map's space that is sectioned off, either to achieve special effects (gravity, water, etc.) or for engine optimization
  • Zone portal: type of polygon (usually built with a sheet brush) which tells the engine where zone boundaries lie

Source: http://wiki.beyondunreal.com/wiki/Terminology

AA Mission Editor specific
This section contains examples, links, manuals and tutorials specifically for AAME.

Links
  • AA Mission Depot - The America's Army Mission Depot provides a centralized location for members of the America's Army community to distribute user created maps, assets, still images, and videos, related to the America's Army game!
  • Cat Killer Productions - A nice website from the community member ")x(TBD)x(.CatKiller", where he posts his maps and some tutorials.
  • mAAppers - mAAppers is a forum offering help and tutorials for map editing.

Manuals
  • Mission Editor Manual (AAManual) - This manual is a reference guide to the functions of the America's Army Mission Editor. It will cover the functions of each of the sections and buttons in the Mission Editor.

Tutorials
  • AI Observation Post ((1VB)Gunns) - This map is a platform where you can observe how the AI move about. It uses mostly default node settings but is mainly set up to demonstrate the four basic orders: Patrol, Guard, Harass, and Ambush.
  • Border Tutorial (AAManual) - This tutorial will build on the concepts you learned in the Dusk Tutorial and focus on some additional game objects you can use in the America's Army level creation process.
  • Convert, export and import custom static meshes ({FRJ}ZarO!O) - The objective of this post is to stimulate and explain how we can share custom static meshes created with the AAME. The tutorials below does not explain how to import anything designed with other 3D programs (impossible and illegal).
  • Create a security camera (Norbac) - The purpose of this tutorial is to explain how you can add a Security Camera to your map similar to the one that features in the map Water Treatment.
  • Create a complex brush (part 1) (Tiago Freire) - In this tutorial I am expecting that you are already know how to build a basic cubic room. If you do not know basic brushing, this tutorial is not yet meant for you.
  • Create a complex brush (part 2) (Tiago Freire) - To carry out this tutorial we are going to use the brushes created in the previous tutorial.
  • Create a complex brush (part 3) (Tiago Freire) - Handles the advanced features of the 2D Shape Editor.
  • Create a breachable wall (ODB_Spectre) - This tutorial explains how to create breachable walls.
  • Create a projector (ODB_Spectre) - This tutorial handles in a few steps how to create a projector.
  • Create a door (Johan) - How to create different types of doors for America's Army maps.
  • Create fog (GameMakerThomas) - In this tutorial Thomas will show you how to create fog that is best suited for your level.
  • Dusk Tutorial (AAManual) - This tutorial will walk you through the basic steps and skills you need to create a map like Dusk.
  • Level Properties (GameMakerThomas) - This quick tutorial will teach you about editing the level properties dialogue, which is essential to finishing your map.

UnrealEd specific
This section contains links, tutorials, troubleshootings and manuals specifically for the UnrealEd. Since AAME is mostly based on UnrealEd, most of the resources on these sites can be used when creating a map for America's Army.

Links
  • 3D Buzz - In the left menu you will find a large resource of tutorials for UnrealEd (including video trainings). This site requires you to register a free account.
  • Archictectonic ? This website contains lots of tutorials for UnrealEd 3.0, starting with the interface.
  • PlanetUnreal UnrealEd - These tutorials assume no prior knowledge of UnrealEd.
  • Unreal Developer Network - The official support site for Unreal Engine real-time technology!
  • UnrealWiki (Beyond Unreal) - The Unreal Wiki is dedicated to gathering documentation on the Unreal Engine. Not only can you browse the large quantity of material already here, but anyone can add or edit information instantly.
  • Wolf's Tutorials - These tutorials were written specifically for the original UnrealEd for the game Unreal. However, many of these tutorials can be used for the AA Mission Editor as well.

Troubleshooting
  • BSP Holes (UnrealWiki) - A BSP hole is an error in the BSP Tree which results in visual and physical errors when editing and playing a map. How to prevent them?
  • Common UnrealEd Crashes (UnrealWiki) - Easily avoidable tragedies.
  • Map Check Errors (UnrealWiki) - List of errors and solutions produced by UnrealEd's Map Check window.

Tutorials
  • Additional Terrain Tips (UDN) - Some tips and pointers for improving your Terrain.
  • Creating Deco Layers (UDN) - Here you will see how to create your own DecoLayers and the various ways you can manipulate them to your liking.
  • Creating Terrains (UDN) - An introductory document to creating Terrain.
  • Editing Terrain Layers (UDN) - An introductory document on editing Terrain Layers.
  • Editing Terrain Maps (UDN) - An introductory document on editing Terrain Maps.
  • Level Optimization (UDN) - An introduction to optimizing your level.
  • Level Optimization (UnrealWiki) - Optimizing a map is a balancing exercise between building a great looking map and builing a map that runs at a playable speed. This page handles a few different techniques.

Manuals
  • BSP Brushes (UDN) - An introduction to BSP Brushes, including creation and modification tools. Includes links to relevant documents. Excellent for beginners.
  • Emitters (UDN) - A list of all topics relating to emitters (particle systems): their use, generation, examples and more!
  • Lightning (UDN) - A list of all topics relating to lighting: general documentation, use in levels, customization and tricks, and more!
  • Movers (UDN) - A guide and reference to setting up Movers.
  • User Interface (UDN) - A list of all topics relating user interfaces: HUDs, consoles, menus, GUIs and more!
  • Volumes (UDN) - A list of all volume-related topics.

Last updated: 30th of August, 2007.



Last edited by =FoxHunter= on 08 Apr 2007 06:34; edited 5 times in total

 America's Army Mission Editor Manual & Tutorials 
 

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