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So im wanting to start to modeling buildings and texture them but i literally don't know what to use cause i think newer modeling programs can be used for sc4 and im assuming anything will work for texturing.  What do i use to model or can i use modern modelling programs like blender. and what do i use to texture.

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Whilst you can make a 3D model in many different applications, it's important to understand that SC4 does not use 3D models as such. Instead they are 2D textures for each zoom/rotation which are mapped onto a basic 3D box or LOD. This method of game design is often called 2.5D. 

Practically speaking, there are only 2 applications set up to render models in a format SC4 work with. One is the dedicated SC4 BAT tool, which is simply a set of scripts for gMax, a cut-down archaic version of 3DS max. The other is 3DS Max itself, by using the BAT4Max scripts written by SimFox. Note however, whatever method you choose, you will always need SC4 BAT for part of the process. In theory the same scripts, which tell your 3D application the camera angles and formats needed to export the 20 images required for SC4 Models, can be made for any 3D modelling program. Practically speaking however, they don't exist, so unless you are very adept with such things, it's really a non-starter.

A potential workaround if you really must use another program is that you can export/convert your files into a format which can be read by 3DS Max or SC4 BAT (far more limited). However, if you must have 3DS Max installed to render, it makes no sense to make your models in another application and mess about IMO. Yes 3DS Max is one horrifically expensive beast, but most modellers simply use the student licence route to get hold of a working copy.

This guide will help to get started:


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