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Old 09-23-2011, 09:46 AM   #1
Curisu
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Default Using DN Mod Tools & Minor Modding(EXTREMELY BASIC)

Noticed a lot of people on here are posting for how to guides for how to use these tools and how to rename. While we have quite a few guides here, most of these guides seem to be for people who know at least a little about editing/modding games files and not "total newb" friendly. Here is my attempt and hope it helps a few people.

Note to more advanced/experienced users:
If I make a mistake somewhere, please correct me.

Table of Contents
Change Log:
- Added a video showing how to open .pak files.
- Re-wrote the guide for a simpler to use .pak maker/opener and removed the video since it was for the old .pak file editing programs.
- Added a new question to the F.A.Q. for those wondering what to do if you do not have a .skn file to re-name. Also corrected a few mistakes to make this a bit easier to understand.

Last edited by Curisu; 01-17-2012 at 10:34 AM.
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Old 09-23-2011, 09:47 AM   #2
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Pre-section:
First off, before I even give you the tools, you will need either "WinRAR" or "7-zip" in order to open the folder that the tools are in(along with quite a few downloads on this forum). What is "WinRAR"/"7-zip" you ask? Putting it in simple terms, it allows you to open .rar and .zip files. The download links "WinRAR" and "7-zip" are posted below(just install one of them with their default settings).

WinRAR
Pros:
  • Seems to have a more user friendly interface(in my opinion).
  • Can make and open both ".zip" and ".rar" files.
Cons:
  • A "Buy WinRAR" window comes up every time you start WinRAR but just click cancel, its free.
Download Link
WinRAR Download(click here)
7-zip
Pros:
  • No "buy 7-zip" window will ever come up.
  • Can compress files down using "LZMA/LZMA2"(basically a super ".zip" file).
Cons:
  • Interface is less user friendly(in my opinion).
  • Can open both ".rar" and ".zip" files but cannot MAKE ".rar" files.
Download Link(surgeforce)
7-zip Download(click here)

These are files are offical downloads given by WinRAR's and 7-zip's sites; You only need to download one of them.

Last edited by Curisu; 09-23-2011 at 09:53 AM.
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Old 09-23-2011, 09:48 AM   #3
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Getting The Tools You Need
This section is just explaining how to extract the tools; If your experienced with WinRAR/7-zip, you can just download the tools listed below and skip the rest this section.
First thing you need is your tools for working with these files. Download the file below to get the basic tools you'll need. Save this file to your "Desktop".

Simple DN Mod Tools Download(click here)

After you have downloaded the tools, double click the file named "Simple DN Mod Tools.rar" on your "Desktop" and it should open in WinRAR/7-zip.
Once "Simple DN Mod Tools.rar" is opened in WinRAR, drag the folder called "Simple DN Mod Tools" from the WinRAR/7-zip window to your "Desktop".

Last edited by Curisu; 11-09-2011 at 03:30 AM.
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Old 09-23-2011, 09:48 AM   #4
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Understanding The Tools
Now that we have the "Simple DN Mod Tools" folder on your "Desktop" open up the folder and you should see the following folders:
  • DDS viewer
  • DNModelBrowser
  • DNPaker Tool
DDS viewer
This will help you view the look or "texture" of an item. It will display the .dds file as a flat image. Its pretty self explanitory so not going into details on how to use this. This folder also contains a .dds file plugin for Photoshop so you can edit .dds files in Photoshop.
DNModelBrowser
This will pretty much do the same thing as the DDS viewer but it will show you what the item will look like in-game. You can also use DN Model Browser to extract various files from the resource files.
DN Paker Tool
This is the tool we will be using to open and make out .pak files. The one in my download link has the ability to make or open multiple .pak files at once and has a more "newb friendly" interface.

Now that this is explained, on to how to use each tool(in order of which I think is the easiest to use).

Last edited by Curisu; 10-01-2011 at 05:47 PM.
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Old 09-23-2011, 09:49 AM   #5
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Setting Up DNModelBrowser
Before we begin, make sure you have a Dragon Nest cilent installed on your computer. It can be any version of Dragon Nest.

Open the "DNModelBrowser" folder and click "DNModelBrowserV1.0a.exe". This window should open:
  1. Click "File" then "Open".
  2. Locate the folder you have your Dragon Nest game installed and click "OK".
  3. Let the program load, it has a progress bar at the bottom right to show you its progress.

Using DN Model Browser
You will now see the left hand panel have a few files and folders in it. You will only be dealing with .ani, .msh, .dds, and .skn files. You will mainly be looking for .skn files in the DN Model Browser. All the files you will need will be located in the "resource" folder. To use DN Model Browser, I will quote Keripo's guide, since Keripo already took time to write it. Credits to Keripo for this part of my guide.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keripo View Post
Using DNModelBrowser

DNModelBrowser is a nifty tool that allows you to view (and animate) 3D models outside of the game. Its also very useful for viewing all the different costumes. The following instructions are just for doing that.

1) Move ALL your custom .pak mods to somewhere safe (outside of the Dragon Nest install folder). The only .pak files you should have in your Dragon Nest install folder are Resource00.pak, Resource01.pak, Resource02.pak, and Resource03.pak. Having custom .paks may cause DNModelBrowser to crash.
2) Run the "DNModelBrowser" program.
3) File -> Open... -> Select your Dragon Nest install folder (e.g. "C:/Nexon/Dragon Nest/")
4) Wait for DNModelBrowser to finish loading all the files.
5) On the left sidebar, open up the folder of the class you want to view (e.g. resource -> char -> player -> sorceress)
6) Select the .skn file for the class (e.g. sorceress.skn) and Right-click -> Render Skin. Rotate the 3D model by click-and-dragging with your mouse.
7) On the left sidebar, open up the parts folder
8) Select the .skn file you want to render and Right-click -> Render Skin
9) Repeat until you are happy with your costume combo. You can always restart by rendering the class's .skn file or dummy .skn file (e.g. so_dummy.skn). You may also want to render a hair style (e.g. parts/so_hair02_pink.skn) and head (e.g. parts/so_head01.skn). Note that not all .skn files are supported by DNModelBrowser v1.
10) Click the drop-down arrow of the "Geosets" menu item and take note of all the costume parts you used. Those are the costume parts you want to grab from the downloaded costume mods packs (or modify the renaming scripts to use if you're making a custom mod).

~Keripo
Other Things about DN Model Browser
  • If you are loading the .skn of a moving model, such as a character or monster, you can find the same name of the file with .ani at the end of it, right click the .ani file and click "Apply Animate". Once you do that, you can see the different actions in that .ani work with the .skn on the screen using the pull down menu to the right of the green M in the tool bar.
  • If your wanting to get a file out of the DN Model Browser, simply right click the file and click "Extract File" and choose where you want it to be extracted to. Please note you can only extract one file at a time using DN Model Browser.

Basic DN Model Viewer Controls
Object Display Area
Left Click: Allows you to turn the object.
Right Click: Allows you to move your camera up, down, left, and right without moving the object.
Scroll Wheel: Allows you to zoom in and out.
File and Folder Panel
Left Click: Select a file.
Right Click(on a file): Opens up what actions you can do to that file.
.skn: Can be extracted, rendered, and converted to an .obj file
.dds,.msh: Can be extracted.
.ani: Can be extracted and applied to the object when a .skn file is displayed on the screen.
Scroll Wheel: Controls scroll bar.
Where are the files for "---"?
Armors:
Go to "resource->char->player->(class)->parts" then open up the folder for the class that you want.
Example: if I wanted the warrior armors, I would choose "resource->char->player->warrior->parts"
The same goes for each class. This is only for the standard armors(Normal,Magic,Rare,Epic), does not cover cash shop or special items.
Mounts/Vehicles:
Go to "resource->char->vehicle".

Cash Shop Items:
Go to "resource->item->cash_shop".
Please note that some cash shop items are class specific(you can tell by the prefixes at the end of the file name "so"(Sorceress)"wa"(Warrior)"cl"(Cleric)"ar"(Archer).
Weapons:
Go to "resource->weapon".
Note: Each version of Dragon Nest (NA, SEA, KR, .ect) may have one file that the other version does not. NA is the furthest behind and it will probably always be the most behind out of any other version.
That covers the basics of the DN Model Browser.

Last edited by Curisu; 09-23-2011 at 10:47 AM.
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Old 09-23-2011, 09:50 AM   #6
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The .pak Files
Before we begin opening .pak files, let me explain what a .pak file is. Simply put, it stores the files in a way for the game to read the files.

Now, in the Dragon Nest folder, you will see "Resource00.pak", "Resource01.pak", "Resource02.pak", "Resource03.pak", and "Resource04.pak".

You will also see quite a few .pak files around the forums here as well. We use .pak files as "containers" for our files so the game can figure out what to do with those files.

Opening The .pak Files
To open ANY .pak files from the forums or from your Dragon Nest game folder, follow these simple steps:
  1. Open the "DNPaker Tool" folder in your "Simple DN Mod Tools" folder.
  2. Click "DNPaker.exe".
  3. Drag your .pak file(s) to the program's window.
  4. It will output your .pak file(s) in a folder named the exact same thing as the .pak file's name. The folder it outputs to will be located in the same place your dragged your file from.
    i.e. you pull the file from your "Desktop", the folder will be on your "Desktop".


Note: If you extract "Resource00.pak", "Resource01.pak", "Resource02.pak", "Resource03.pak", or "Resource04.pak", there are A LOT of files in these .pak files. I do not recommend extracting the default .pak files unless you know what you are doing because of the shear amount of files. Using the DN Model Browser's extract feature is best if your looking for only a handful of files.

Note 2: Be careful not to directly edit "Resource00.pak", "Resource01.pak", "Resource02.pak", "Resource03.pak", or "Resource04.pak". You can edit the files FROM the .pak files but NEVER make a .pak to replace the ones originally in your Dragon Nest client.

Re-packing The .pak Files
Once you mod/edit/do whatever you wanted to do to your .dds, .skn, .msh files, follow these simple steps to turn the files back into a .pak file.
  1. Make sure you have all your modded/edited files in a folder.
  2. Open the "DNPaker Tool" folder in your "Simple DN Mod Tools" folder.
  3. Click "DNPaker.exe".
  4. Drag your folder(s),the one with the modded/edited/re-named files in, to the program's window.
  5. It will output your folder(s) as .pak files in the same location your folder was in. Please note that whatever the folder is named, your .pak will be named, so re-name it as needed.

Please note that you must have your .pak file named something similar to "Resource01-namehere.pak". You may change the part that says "namehere" to whatever you like but do not change any of the parts that are in bold red above.

Example:
Good
Resource01-awesomesword.pak
Resource01-awesome_sword.pak
Bad
awesomesword.pak
awesomesword
AGAIN, Be careful not to directly edit "Resource00.pak", "Resource01.pak", "Resource02.pak", or "Resource03.pak". You can edit the files FROM the .pak files but NEVER make a .pak to replace the ones originally in your Dragon Nest client.

Note: If you are having an error pop up when trying to .pak a folder, re-naming the folder to "resource" will fix that issue. Just re-name it accordingly when putting the .pak file into the game folder.

Last edited by Curisu; 01-17-2012 at 10:20 AM.
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Old 09-23-2011, 09:50 AM   #7
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FINALLY, Re-naming Files! TEACH ME!

Now that you have an understanding of the tools we use here, I can teach you some of the fun stuff.

Re-naming files is simple but some files don't work right because:
  1. Not in your client.
  2. The files are class specific.
  3. You didn't re-name the right file.
  4. Your missing files.
In the event that it happens to you(which it probably will), don't give up! Keep trying!

Now, when renaming the files, we don't use their in-game name, we use their file name to re-name it.
For an easier time finding the file names, check out this album made by Melon, one of the people who make the awesome-sauce of this forum.

From this link, you can figure out the file name of pretty much all armors, weapons, faces, hairs, and cash shop items.

Please note that for this style of re-naming files, you are only re-naming .skn files, the .dds and .msh files do not need to be re-named at all unless they are for items that were not originally in the game, such as custom made weapons models or custom made weapon dds files(known as re-coloring)

Lets start with something easy, a weapon mod. Please note this is just an example.
You have a staff for a Sorceress in-game with the file name "so_steff_a02_a" but you would like it to look like "so_steff_archbishop".

What you would do with this example is you would open up the DN Model Browser(look back in the guide to learn about using DN Model Browser) and find the file "so_steff_archbishop.skn". Once you find this file, extract it.

Now, you simply re-name "so_steff_archbishop.skn" to"so_steff_a02_a.skn"

Once this is done, the easy part comes, pak-ing the files.
  1. Put your re-named .skn file into a folder named "resource"(if the folder is not named "resource" the .pak tool may not work properly).
  2. Open the "DNPaker Tool" folder in your "Simple DN Mod Tools" folder.
  3. Click "DNPaker.exe".
  4. Drag your folder(s) to the program's window.
  5. Once it outputs your .pak file, re-name the .pak file to "Resource01-namehere.pak". Again, you may change the part that says "namehere" to whatever you like but do not change any of the parts that are in bold red above.
  6. From here, go into your Dragon Nest folder and run the patcher by clicking "DNLauncher.exe". DO NOT CLICK PLAY YET.
  7. Once you are done patching, you may then take your "Resource01-namehere.pak" file(or whatever you named it) and put it into your Dragon Nest folder and then click "Play". If you did it correctly, your character should be holding the weapon you wanted it to, if not, try again!
This is just for a weapon, but its pretty much the same for armors and cash shop items; Have fun and experiment! 'Tis the way of the modder.



Important Notes:
-Whenever you run the patcher, make sure you have no mods in your Dragon Nest folder. If you have a mod in your Dragon Nest folder while patching, you run the chance of messing up your Dragon Nest folder which means you'll have to re-install! You have been warned.

-If you are using a item file for an item that was not originally in your version of Dragon Nest, you MUST have the .dds and .msh files for that item in your .pak file(unless you know how to make custom .skn files but not gonna go into that in this guide, a little too advanced to be called "basics").

-If you do not have a .skn file to re-name, you may use the .dds and .msh for that file instead.
Example:
My Archer uses the bow "ar_smallbow_b01_c" in game and I want it to look like "ar_smallbow_a01_a".
I cannot find a .skn for "ar_smallbow_a01_a" with DN Model Browser, but I found the .dds and .msh files for it(which, in this case would be "ar_smallbow_a01_a.msh" and "ar_smallbow_a01_a.dds")
You would simply then re-name BOTH the .dds and .msh files from "ar_smallbow_a01_a" to "ar_smallbow_b01_c" then just .pak the files.

-Trying to figure out which one is which rarity? Take "cl_flail_a01_c", this would be an "Epic" weapon. You are able to tell this from the letter "a" in the file name,("cl_flail_a01_c"). It will always be the letter before the number part of the file name.
As for the others, here is a list:
  • Unique = "s"
  • Epic = "a"
  • Rare = "b"
  • Magic = "c"
  • Normal = "d"

Last edited by Curisu; 01-17-2012 at 10:32 AM.
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Old 09-23-2011, 09:51 AM   #8
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Ending, F.A.Q., & Credits
Hope people will find this guide useful, maybe we can cut down some "how do you" threads now xD

F.A.Q.
DN Model Viewer
Q: Why does my DN Model Viewer crashes whenever I try to load it?
A: Probably because you have modded files in your Dragon Nest game folder. Removing the mods when using DN Model Viewer will most likely solve that issue.

Q: How come when I right click on a .skn file in DN Model Viewer does it not display?
A: There can be a few reasons:
  1. The .skn file wasn't completed, meaning it may not have a .dds or .msh file to read information from.
  2. Some .skn files don't load exactly in the middle, try zooming out a bit or twisting your camera view.
  3. Your trying to load from a custom .pak file, usually doesn't work too well with custom .pak files.
FINALLY, Re-naming Files! TEACH ME!
Q: I am trying to use a modded item that was custom made/taken from another game. Why is the weapon is not displaying correctly?
A: With custom mods(that are files that were not originally in the game or load by your Dragon Nest patcher), you will need to include a .msh, .dds, .skn file, and possibly a .ani file if it is animated. Other than that, it could also be that the .msh file and/or .skn file were not made correctly.

Q: I tried to edit a .dds file for an armor/weapon but parts that are not supposed to be there are showing up. What did I do wrong?
A: You probably have not put an "Alpha Channel" in your .dds file. For more info about "Alpha Channels", read this post:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Curisu View Post
I believe your issue is the alpha layers, parts that shouldn't show up are supposed to be black for not showing at all, white for showing, and gray for everything in between(transparency, ect)

I'll try to explain it as simple as I can because it confused the heck outta me when I started working with .dds files.

I do this in Gimp so Photoshop would be similar.

Basically, when your done editing your .dds, go to "Layers", go to "Transparency" and click "Add Alpha Channel". From here, there should be a "Channels" tab somewhere in your "Toolbox". You need to make all layers invisible except the Alpha and then all the part you want to be seen, you just erase the white , the black areas you erase will seen, while the white areas will remain invisible. Then just make the "Alpha" layer invisible again and make the other layers visible again, save it and you should be good to go, so for your issue, you'll need to make an "Alpha" layer and just erase the black on the "Alpha" layer so you can see the parts of your .dds. Leave the parts that you don't want to appear black but on the "Alpha" layer only. You can flip the other layers on and off as you need so you can see what your doing but just make sure your working in the correct layer.

Credits
  • DootDoot- A friend of mine who introduced me to Dragon Nest.
  • Melon- For providing the web album of file names and pictures.
  • Makeshift- For being my proof reader and teaching me a few things I was not aware of.
  • Keripo- For the section I quoted from his guide(with permission of course).
  • Silent- For his guide that interested me in modding.
  • Jestr- For him posting so many times about how to identify epic, rare, normal, magic, and unique items from the file name.
  • And to the rest of you people that I have learned my limited know how of modding for Dragon Nest files from.
(If I used anything of anyone else, and you feel you should be credited, please PM me and I will fix it ASAP)

Last edited by Curisu; 09-24-2011 at 03:22 AM.
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Old 09-23-2011, 10:10 AM   #9
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omg! its longer then i remember lol. very nice though i think anyone who reads it from end to end will definitely be able to mod afterward
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Old 09-23-2011, 02:09 PM   #10
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This is a beautiful guide!! Very nicely done

I've got three tips you might like to add:

1. Model Browser will crash if you have custom 'mods' in the c:/nexon/dragonnest folder when you run the program. With the current settings, I believe you need to remove (all?) mods from the dragonnest folder before running it.

2. When using the Model Browser, you may have to zoom FAR out to view the .skn file you selected.

3. I found Spectral's video on .pak files useful when I was first learning. I felt more confident selecting the correct script/folders afterwards. Maybe he'll let you embed his video into your guide? [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
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