Tutorial : Building X3cl Skins
Posted 23 March 2005 - 03:50 PM
This will give people a chance to enter some skins ready for the competition 3 close.
Any comments let me know so that they can be included.
Posted 23 March 2005 - 03:51 PM
The background image is just a background image, this has no interaction at all and all other components are layered ontop of this. You will see with mine and other skins that we draw a box or a section for each item to be displayed on this makes it look alot clearer and easier for people to read the information.
Take a look at this pic for an example of one of my skins, this shows how I have used a few boxes with nice effects to make the menu items look like they stand out from the rest of the skin:-
The background image can be drawn up in any graphics package that you choose but must be 640x480 for a standard view on a TV, other resolutions available for widescreen, once you have designed your background export it out as a BMP file, this is the file type that the X3CL will be able to read.
When your bmp file is complete go into the ini file via notepad/wordpad and change the title of the existing bmp file to the one that you have just created.
The ini file
The ini file is basically a page full of code which tells the X3CL where to display the individual elements.
alignment can be R for right, C for center and L for left
The above line is from an ini file it shows how an element is structured and its values.
I will explain the following line from an ini file based on the above quote.
settingname = cpu temperature
alignment C (Centre)
X 465 Across >
Y 455 Up /\
fontcolor 0xffffffff hex ref colour with the first two digits set for the alpha (transparancy)
output %s leave these as is just determines the output on screen
The following link shows how a typical ini file would structure the on screen items, please note these are only for demonstration and may not be 100%
What can go wrong??
When installing the skin simply ftp it across to the correct skins folder on your e: (e:\x3skins) go into the skin selection screen and select your new skin, if the system crashes it is probably something to do with the ini file, I always make a backup of the current working ini file before making any changes, this allows me to go back to the working version and try the change again, I had a few skins freeze on me when I first started but that was due to a bad font colour entry this was before we knew about the 8 digit code for the colour.
When creating a skin you can use a custom font (.TTF file) to give your skin a unique look, name the font at the beginning of the ini file (as you did earlier with the bmp file) and include it in your folder when you zip the files up, even if its a common font you will need to add it to the folder.
Zip and Upload
Now that you have your working skin, create a zip folder with the background image, ini file and your font. When creating the zip include the whole folder as people are going to just ftp this across to their hard drive and this is how you will find it in the list of skins.
Hope this helps, I think I may copy this into a new thread as a bit of a basic tutorial to making an X3CL skin.
Would you mind if I mentioned your name when creating a thread?
Feel free to ask any further questions.
Posted 24 March 2005 - 05:53 PM
Just to make a minor note that someone spotted, where I mentioned about the XY values its down the vertical not up as in the tutorial.
X 465 Across >
Y 455 Down \/
Edited by goodwin, 24 March 2005 - 05:54 PM.
Posted 25 March 2005 - 12:12 AM
Posted 08 May 2005 - 06:13 PM
Posted 08 May 2005 - 06:22 PM
cancel got it going
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