Help with particle editor (Particle Ed005)

Discussion in 'Skins and Mods' started by Bamsi, May 29, 2019.

  1. Bamsi

    Bamsi Member

    I have found a tool called particle ed005 (by lee) which can be used to view, change and export particle-data files from psobb.

    It displays a row of attributes for each particle effect. There are a few attributes that are pretty obvious (like texture and color). Is there a guide somewhere that explains the attributes? Can anybody experienced with the particle editor help me to create such a guide or post his experiences in this thread?

    My intention is to create a particle importer tool for unity3d that creates particle system visuals out of the data files. I want to use them for my pso fun game project (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4y9M7-1T_8bEyPE1eN2HpQ). This tool might be useful for modders to have a visual feedback for particle effect changes.
     
  2. Bamsi

    Bamsi Member

    Okay i started to create some kind of documentation for the particle attributes.

    Its a complete pain to figure out what the values are. Also some of the attribute-names in the editor seem to be misleading.

    Short instructions on how i am doing my testing:
    1. I extracted data.gsl to get the particleentry.dat file which contains most particle-effects of the game (512 effects)
    2. I use particle ed005 to alter to values of particle effect number 28 (shifta_test) which is actually the glow effect of shift on the hands of the player character.
    3. I save the particleentry.dat directly in ephineapsobb data folder
    4. I start the game and enter forest 1 + cast shift to see the changes
    5. The particle effect will automatically pulse each second (repeat itself). I guess this is defined by the program code. I didnt find anything in the particle effect itself that changes this pulse time. Its also accompanied by a sound, so i guess its the shift logic that does this.

    Note: Its also possible to change the particle effects in the psobb title screen which makes it faster to restart and test for changed effect. but you have only a planar view and thus cannot change the camera angle.

    This is what i got so far on the attributes:

    id,name
    number and name

    type
    emit: standard particle emitter (quadratic particle shape)
    spiral: ray like particle effect, rays emitting from effect origin
    vacum: todo

    texture
    texture for particle (texture defines if it is animated or single frame)
    the base size of a particle is based on the texture size (i.e. particle appears bigger if it has a higher texture resoluition)

    posx,posy,posz
    defines particle spawn area (cubic x,y,z) 10 is approximately character height

    scalex
    particle size

    scaley
    particle size random variation

    scalez
    size multiply for each frame < 1 = shrink > 1 = grow

    vacume
    horizontal plane speed (random direction)
    will also introduce a random rotation (depends on texture attributes)

    gravity
    start y speed (positive = up and negative = down)

    spdx
    horizontal plane speed (random variation)

    cr_rt
    start y speed random variation

    creat
    cant find out what this is doing no noticeable changes if tweaking this value.

    number
    number of particles created at once

    duration
    particle lifetime, 30 in frames (30 = ~1 second)

    apper
    particle lifetime additional random range (30 = ~1 second)

    gamma
    horizontal plane speed multiply (acceleration) 1 = constant speed

    fric
    particle y speed add per frame

    spxof
    fade in (in lifetime percentage 0,5 = fade in at 50% of lifetime)

    spyof

    fade out (in lifetime percentage 0,5 = start fade out at 50% of lifetime)

    radius
    particle rotation in degrees per frame (positive = clockwise, negative = counter-clockwise)

    opt1
    "thickness" of rays for spiral effect-type

    opt2

    does nothing so far, still figuring out

    opt3,opt4,opt5
    color animation add values: red = opt3; green = opt4; blue = opt5

    alpha,red,green,blue
    texture color and alpha (color tint)

    tex,nor,jum,rever
    nothing on those yet


    ------------------------
    Update:
    added info on spxof, spyof, radius
    added some formatting
    added info on vacume and spdx
    added opt3 opt4 opt5
    added type info, added opt1 for spiral-type
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2019
  3. Aleron Ives

    Aleron Ives Member

    Location:
    California
    Aurelli would be the person to talk to, if you two share a forum or Discord server somewhere.
     
  4. Aurelli

    Aurelli A ghost or something

    I've been messing with the damn thing for a few years, and there's a few of the fields I don't quite understand. On top of that, while there is A LOT you can do just within Particleentry, there are a few annoying limits that can't be changed without editing elsewhere. (Shifta is a good example of this!)

    the TYPE field is the basis for the entire basic behavior of the effect.

    Type 1/Emit is generally used for effects that stay in the spot they spawn in, and is usually used for very short (but often repeated) effects. A few examples of this are most effects seen in basic combat such as hit impacts, muzzle flashes, and the main parts of techniques, among many others.

    Type 2/Vacume is mostly used for effects consisting of numerous particles and more complex movement than the other types, but rarely (maybe never, I don't remember) does any form of significant scaling or stretching after the particles spawn.
    Some notable effects that use this type are the range fields for healing/support techniques, PART of the telepipe (Which is literally also Brightness Circle,) and generally anything that seems to spin, waft, or spiral.

    Type 3/Spiral... Despite the supposed name, I don't think I've EVER seen this used to make an effect that actually spirals.
    Instead, this mostly seems to be used to create fast, simple movement and significant stretching and scaling AFTER the particles spawn.
    You'll see examples of type 3 in some of the burst/loading screens, fireworks Pioneer 2 fireworks during events, in the title screen, and when equipping weapons.

    Changing the type will also change what several of the other fields do too.
    For example, "Vacume" in types 1 and 3 act similarly to Gravity, but in a slower/smoother manner if I remember right.
    Vacume in type 2 actually causes the majority of any spinning or spiraling movement, such as that seen in Resta and heal/support range.

    Hopefully soon, I can find the time to get back into this a bit more so I can explain what I remember better.. XD

    The rest of what you've filled in so far seems pretty accurate to what I remember.
    I always have a lot of fun tinkering with it. (Testing it is sometimes a pain in the ass though!)

    EDIT: Here, here's a crappy video of some of the things I did with it on Gamecube.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2019
  5. Bamsi

    Bamsi Member

    Thanks a lot for the reply Aurelli and for the information you gave me, it will definately help me. I already got some more infos on the attributes figured out. I will update the things in my post soon.

    Hope this will help you and other modders in the future :)
     
  6. Aurelli

    Aurelli A ghost or something

    I've thought about making a guide post like this at one point, but you seemed to learn it all very quickly and are doing a much better job of explaining it all in words than I probably would have... XD

    I'm glad to see particle editing finally getting attention from more than like 2 or 3 people. (Even if it might only be ONE more)
     
  7. Bamsi

    Bamsi Member

    Hey Aurelli, you already helped me a lot, thanks for that :) And thanks for your kind words.

    I think i figured out most of the EMIT-Type. But i stopped in the middle of SPIRAL-Type and didnt even touch the VACUM-type yet.

    But i already felt i will become crazy if i have to look at values and particles for much longer.

    I went over to start programming a particle importer module for unity which will try to replicate the particle effects in the unity-gameengine so i can use them for my game.

    What you can see in this screenshot is the current state of the importer: particles_v001.JPG

    It shows all EMIT-Type particle effects of pso at once (layed out in a grid).
    I am setting the texture, start size + random, texture-animation and start color.
    The movement is still default, i will continue with that i guess. Hopefully i can reproduce the strange pso parameters with the unity particle system.

    I guess at some point i will have to continue with SPIRAL- and VACUM-Types XD

    If anyone has to add infos or finds wrong information in the description above then please let me know.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2019
  8. Bamsi

    Bamsi Member

    So i finally finished a first version if the particle importer for unity.

    Here you can see some of the 321 imported emit type particle effects:


    Its far from perfect and would need additional tweaking by manually comparing to the effects in pso.

    I will take a break from my particle excursion and move back to do more gameplay stuff.

    @Aurelli Do you know what the particleentryaXX.dat files are for? My guess is that they kind of add / patch the particleentry.dat.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2019
  9. Aleron Ives

    Aleron Ives Member

    Location:
    California
    My guess has always been that they're for area-specific environmental particles, but I don't know for sure.
     
  10. Bamsi

    Bamsi Member

    @Aleron Ives If you load them with the particle editor and look at the names it seems to be a mix of new effects (i.e. for enemies like gigue and meriakol) and overrides of one that are in the main particleentry.dat like resta_small, barta_head and so on. Could it be that some particle effects are different depending on location?
     
  11. Aurelli

    Aurelli A ghost or something

    I also believe they're used for specific areas, but most likely only for things specific to THAT area.
    I haven't messed with anything except the base particleentry.dat, but every single thing I've changed in there so far stays consistent regardless of what area I'm in.

    Also, notice how some of the effects in your video seem to be blank?
    Some of them seem to ahve gone unused after Version 2, but never taken out or replaced (the Ryuka_yellow set for example... Either that, or I have no idea where they hell they're used!)

    Another one that has always messed with me was "megidolv6sphere."
    I don't think I've actually seen this particle even properly spawn on BB, but it is supposed to be used in lv26+ Megid. It DOES spawn in GC, and always with a ripple effect placed on top of it. The ripple effects are done elsewhere, and still function even if Particleentry is completely broken, deleted, or otherwise unusable.

    My theory is they decided to do away with Megidolv6sphere altogether since the ripples didn't make it into BB intact...

    Also... I don't know how your videos work, but some of the effects are very hard to see on the black background.:(
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2019
  12. Aleron Ives

    Aleron Ives Member

    Location:
    California
    Distortion effects are provided by the GC SDK MTXLightPerspective function. D3D8 has no comparable functionality, so all such effects are missing in Xbox and BB.
     
  13. Bamsi

    Bamsi Member

    Thanks a lot for the feedback @Aurelli and Aleron Ives
    I think a few of the effects are hard to see or even out of view in the video. The camera movement is something i did very quick to have something to show.

    Yesterday i tried to implement the barta spell into my little game with:

    barta_lv1head => flash
    barta_lv1hontai => flying
    barta_lv1kemu => flying (not sure about this one)
    barta_lv1kira => flying (small stars, not too visible right now)

    I use the "barta_lv1head" for start and the other three on the flying projectile. While doing this i recognized the speeds in the importer where not correctly adapted for fast slowing down effects. I changed that it a lot of the effects seem to look way better now. I think i will make another video soon, so you can give a little more feedback if you like.

    This is how barta currently looks.

    barta.png


    For the other particleentry.dat files i just recognized that it actually display the maps in the particle editor header that use those files :D So you where completely right!

    Thanks a lot!
     
  14. Bamsi

    Bamsi Member

    I made another video which should show a more accurate version of the effects:



    @Aurelli Do you have some kind of list that tells which effect is used for which action / spell in the game? Would be interested in creating such a list with me?
     
  15. Aurelli

    Aurelli A ghost or something

    I do not have such a list, but I would be interested in working together to make it happen.
    I do know several of them off the top of my head, but there are some that I still haven't quite pinned down yet, including one I've been trying to match for over a year.. XD
     
  16. Bamsi

    Bamsi Member

    Thats nice. Currently i am figuring out the VACUME attributes. It's like a curse, i want to do something else but i am always getting back to the particle effects :(

    I am already able to import the VACUME-Type and some of them look pretty much like the original effects.
    There are a few things i have to figure out, like i think they can also grow and shrink in area (or to center) but need a good example to test with.

    I started a google-spreadsheet:
    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1wObDvEFpKE7qEzjfKGyOrbG_1U-o4VLtQBPMBcSfyzI/edit?usp=sharing

    I have never done this so hopefully it will work. I try to create the initial fill with the effect names and maybe type and then we can add the purpose / action / usage in the other columns :D
     
  17. Bamsi

    Bamsi Member

    Okay, i filled the spreadsheet with the initial stuff. Everybody invited to enter stuff XD
     

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