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Subject: Getting profiles on custom ship cards rss

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Kirk Mathes
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I'd like to start adapting some other ships to this system, but am not sure how people are getting nice profiles for the hit location chart.

Does anybody have any tips for how to do this without very expensive software, or just happening to have a picture already?
 
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D Conklin
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Yagami 225 wrote:
I'd like to start adapting some other ships to this system, but am not sure how people are getting nice profiles for the hit location chart.

Does anybody have any tips for how to do this without very expensive software, or just happening to have a picture already?


First off, get Bioautomaton's excellent ship template PSD file from the Download section: Battleship Galaxies - Ship Card Template (Trebuchet MS Font)

Secondly, download a free PSD image editor like Gimp(http://www.gimp.org/) or Paint .NET (http://www.getpaint.net/) with the PSD Plugin (http://psdplugin.codeplex.com).

Load the template up and you'll see separate layers for lots of different layouts of the grid, with separate layers for the actual "ship profile".

Google Image search is your friend here. Try searching on the ship name (if doing a custom of an existing sci-fi universe) or generic terms for space ships,etc...try http://tinyurl.com/7g6qud2 as a good starting place.

Limiting the search to "Black and White" and "Line Drawing" sometimes helps...

Once you have an image, you can paste it into a layer and tweak away.

Remember, if you are unable to find a good top-down view, you could probably get away with a front, side, or even isometric view just as well.

Have fun!
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Kirk Mathes
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Wow, that is a LOT of work. I just gained a whole lot more respect for people who do their own customs.

I was just poking around with it for an hour and didn't even get one ship card done.

With that template, do you know is there a way to just edit the sample text that is already in the layer, or do you have to erase what's there, and start a new text box with your custom text? (using gimp)
 
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D Conklin
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Yagami 225 wrote:
With that template, do you know is there a way to just edit the sample text that is already in the layer, or do you have to erase what's there, and start a new text box with your custom text? (using gimp)


Maybe with Photoshop you can actually edit the objects...but in other free programs you have to do it the hard way...
 
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Kirk Mathes
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Thanks
 
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Travis Bryant
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If you cannot find a line drawing of a ship, but can find a picture of the ship with little to no background, here is what I did for a quick n' dirty outline:

(note: I use Photoshop in my day job, but the GIMP should be able to do similar)

1) Clear out as much of the unwanted background as possible. No background is what we're going for here. Make sure the background for your document is set to "transparent" or "no background" or "0% opacity". Note that I had to convert the source jpg into a "Smart Object" (rasterized?) in Photoshop in order to knock out the background in later steps.

2) Use your magic wand tool to select the entire area *outside* of the ship.

3) Now that you've selected everything *not* the ship, delete that area so that you have a transparent background with the ship sitting in the middle.

3a) If you did have a busy background, you may have to go in and clean up bits of the background that didn't get removed in the first select. Magic wand + delete key is your friend. Undo, if you selected too much or the wrong thing, is your best friend

4) Now that the outside area is transparent, select this surrounding space again with the magic wand. Fill the area (under Edit in my version of Photoshop) with a bright color - red is good, but it should contrast with the color of the ship.

5) You should have a solid bright outside area surrounding your ship. Select the outside area again with your magic wand (if it's not already still selected). Now you're going to use "Inverse selection" to change the selection to the outline of the ship itself. Press Delete to delete the ship. Don't panic! You've simply made a cut-out where the outline will go.

6) Using your magic wand, click inside the space where the ship used to be. It should select the outline of the ship. Next you need to Stroke that selection. It's under Edit in my program. I'd say 3-4 pixel black stroke at 100% opacity should be sufficient. You should end up with an outline of the ship with a bright background surrounding it.

7) Delete the bright background, using the magic wand again. You are left with the outline of the ship on a transparent plane. You can now drop this outline into Bioautomaton's template. No, you don't have the cool blueprint of the inside of the ship, but it's enough to use for the Battleship grid.

I hope that wasn't too confusing and helps. This is my first time trying to explain a Photoshop procedure in text form.

Also note that I *have* found a surprising number of spaceship blueprints via the already-mentioned Google Image search. The method described above is a last resort.
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D Conklin
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tensider wrote:

I hope that wasn't too confusing and helps. This is my first time trying to explain a Photoshop procedure in text form.


Excellent tutorial!
 
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