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Default Water through ImageTool

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Does anyone know how to add alpha channel (default water effects) through MS's ImageTool?Or is Elrond's utility the only way at this time?I want to add this "advanced" functionality to the PhotoTerrain Tutorial that is to be released shortly.Thanks,Misho

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Hey Misho-The way I've neen able to use an alpha channel through Imagetool is to have a file that already contains an alpha channel. Using Photoshop, the only format that works for me is a Targa file.So basically what I do is use your excellent product to create the BGL file and the associated bitmaps, then load each bitmap into photoshop and select the water areas. I then go to the channels menu and create a new channel, and fill the selected area with black. I then save the modified file as a Targa file with alpha.Once this is done then I use Image tool to load each bitmap and convert it to a DXT 1 file (I'm not sure if the water mask is 256 colors, but it works as 1 bit), create mipmaps and save. I keep an eye on the information area on the right side of the screen - it will tell you if there is an associated alpha channel in the file.That's it!Now, if your question was if I knew of a way to combine a separate mask file with a normal ground file, then I don't know.... sorry!Derek

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Hi Misho,>Does anyone know how to add alpha channel (default water >effects) through MS's ImageTool? >>Or is Elrond's utility the only way at this time? I simply take the textures generated by Terrabuilder and use Martin's Convdxt utility to batch create an alpha channel that is transparent. Water shows through the transparent areas. One simple process! Regards,Chris Wilkes

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derek..try this..save you gobs of time.Before you start your process make 2 main source bmps, one like you always have, and another with all your water black (0,0,0) and all else white (255,255,255).Now run it thru your process (TB, or resample.exe) twice, once using the "real" bmp, and once using your "alpha" bmp. I create two different .inf files for this...you do it however you wish.You should get two copies of each slice bmp.Save them in two different folders.Run Elronds utility, directing it to the alpha and main path, and convert to dxt plus alpha (fs2k method).You won't have to edit any of the individual slices this way.Bob B

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Thanks for the tip, Bob - I'm not a real hardcore designer, though, and my area scenery doesn't cover a large enough area to make batch processing really practical.I am going to have to "cut" out the river portions sometime, so I do it after the processing, instead of before. I keep the alpha channel in the slices, so fewer files to keep track of. I do enjoy reading the various messages posted here, and I really appreciate the exchange of ideas.DerekNow - there are some other questions I have - but I'll start another thread for that.

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