Open General
by Luis Guzman

GRAPHIC SPECS

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Graphics

Preferred graphics file type for Open General is .PNG format,  although it can also load .JPG,  .BMP and for maps .SHP and .s16 formats.  Every graphic used by the game must be read from an external files, so it is a good to understand which files are used and where the game will look for them.

Note:
         Main Folder  stands for "Main Game Folder", the folder where you installed the game
         EFile               stand   for "Equipment file/s"
         EFolder          stands for "Equipment Folder", the folder related to an EFile

There are 3 groups of graphic files:

  • Files used for User Interface (UI). Are located in OPENGUI folder
  • Files related to an Equipment (EFile). Are located in OPENDAT folder
  • Files related to Unit's icons. Are integrated into a "Datfile" (see below)

User Interface graphics (OPENGUI folders)

Images used for UI must be located either in the Main OPENGUI folder or in the EFolder\OPENGUI for those requiring a different UI. Installer creates the Main OPENGUI subdirectory including all "default" UI graphics files

Thus to customize any EFile's UI, an specific EFolder\OPENGUI subdirectory is needed, to place the files that must be different than default ones.

The files for UI are of type:

  • CURSORS:
    .CUR files used for different actions.
  • WIN DIALOGS:
    These dialogs are actually common windows dialogs, included in executable as resources, so they are not customizable. Only color and transparency can be partially customized using COLORS.txt.file.
  • GAME DIALOGS / WINDOWS / PANELS:
    .PNG files used to to show different panels/windows and pop up dialogs using DirectDraw (HQ, Purchase, Deploy,...)
  • GAME DECORATIVES:
    .PNG files used for different purposes, like explosions, small icons on map, and info icons.
  • MENUS:
    .PNG files to show menus in map or other game dialogs. Files include menu options (one or several) arranged in rows/cols or having just one option.
  • MAPS:
    .PNG / .JPG used to draw the background map image.
    .PNG files to set up the map using tiles. These tilesets png files must be made always as 256 colors (8 bits) using all of them same palette.

Except cursor files (.cur) images can be made as PNG or BMP, although PNG takes precedence in case both exist.

The files in this group are searched using this sequence:

  1. In EFolder's OPENGUI subfolder first
  2. In Main game OPENDAT subfolder (if any is missing yet)

Equipment related graphics (OPENDAT folders)

As EFiles usually have different countries, most EFiles include an specific EFolder\OPENDAT subdirectory, making easier to the player to know which EFile is s/he playing.

The files in this group are searched using this sequence:

  1. In EFolder's OPENDAT subfolder
  2. In Main game OPENDAT subfolder (if any is missing yet)
  3. If any is not found, then PG2 standard shp files  (dossier.shp, flags1.shp, inspect.shp) are searched:
    • As external shp file in EFolder's OPENDAT subfolder
    • As external shp file in Main game OPENDAT folder
    • Within panzer2.dat if this can be found in Main game folder

These are the proper sizes expected by Open General:

Dossier_panel
Should be 640x480 otherwise medals and losses will be painted offseted.

Dossier_medal
66 pixels width for each medal (198 pixels per country), height is figured from the image, one row layout

Dossier_portrait
146 x 171 pixels each photo, one photo per country, one row layout

Inspect_portrait/ Inspect_leader
80x91 pixels each leader. One column per country up to 15 photos in column.
Inspect portrait is checked first and if not found inspect_leader is loaded

Inspect_medal
22x19 each medal, one row layout

Flag_small
12x9 each flag, 2 rows layout (12x18 per country)

Flag_med
21x14 each flag, one row layout

Flag_big
Not used !!!

Roundels
60x50 each roundel (should be properly aligned to be painted on hex pos rectangle. One row layout

Start_Open
Any png/bmp with a filename start+anything can be used

OPENDAT folder also holds rain.png and snow.png files to animate weather:
although usually only in default Main game OPENDAT folder.

The game also can load icons as standalone .PNG files located in EFile's OPENDAT, but it is recomended to use this feature only to test new icons or to develop using new icons not included yet in the Datfile.

REDIST package includes all different pictures delivered with Graph-Switcher tool (well except those having old format) compressed in a package to allow installing equipment files folders easily.

Unit icons  (Datfiles)

Unit icons can be made using different formats. The preferred format is as PNG file having 9 images (faces) arranged as same size 3x3 icons, or just one icon as far as the image is less than 240 pixels width and 150 pixels height. But game also can read icons made as .JPG, as PeG's .SI6 format and as PG2'a .SHP

Units icons are expected to be included in Datfiles - a kind of library of icons files - which are more efficient to load and use. Game can use 2 Datfiles, to allow specific EFile icons as well as a general bigger set with all icons available for any EFile. The general Datfile's filename is OpenIcons.dat which is located in main game folder and the (usually smaller) EFile's Datfile's filename is EquipIcons.dat and shlould be located in the EFolder

At load time and everytime active EFile is changed, game merges in an internal Datfile: EquipIcons.dat if present and OpenIcons.dat (so icons from EquipIcons take precedence) and then searches for units icons using this sequence:

  1. Unit icons is searched first in Efile's OPENDAT as a standalone file (.png, then as .s16 and finally as .shp) and loaded it if found
  2. Else unit icons is looked up in merged Datfile as .png, then as s16 and finally as .shp) and loaded it if found