Full Version: ICR2 > N1 Conversions HowTo?
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Hello, I signed up to this site to see if I could find out the process in how to convert ICR2 (or N2/N99) tracks to the original Papyrus N1 game.  I am trying to update N1 to 2021 and have already gotten a good chunk of the ICR2 to N1 tracks like Indy and Elkhart, etc. and I've done graphic edits for Michigan > California & Charlotte > Texas.  I've also got some of the updated conversions from Pavel 69, like Talladega, Phoenix, etc. that are all available for download here.  

However, there are still a bunch of tracks that I am missing.  For example, most of the 1.5 mile tracks are vaporware.  I need Kansas, LVMS, Nashville, Chicagoland, Homestead, and other tracks of that sort.  It seems that if Pavel 69 was able to do some N99 > N1 conversions then it should be possible to get those tracks and easily convert them.  I understand that ICR2 and N1 are very similar but I just don't understand how the conversion works.  Lots of folks are converting these tracks from N3/N2/N99 to ICR2, which then should easily be convertible to N1, but unfortunately I am at a dead end.  What tools do I need to take these conversions one more step to complete my N1 track schedule?

First of all I think this topic need to be moved to N1 subforum.

There is no fast way to convert tracks to N1. Yes, both sims N1 and ICR2 use same 3do and mip formats but palette is different. And here is the problem.

ICR2 default tracks -> N1
For default tracks there is ICR2 to Nascar 1 converter by Gerhard Lingenberg. This converter has prepared by Gerhard Lingenberg N1 palettes for every ICR2 track. So converter just assigns new color indexes inside 3do and mip files according to new palette.

ICR2 custom tracks -> N1
In this case main problem is N1 palette for custom track. You need to create it manually. I don't know other ways to make it. When you will have palette you can using ICR2 to N1 converter then. Rename your custom ICR2 track to one of defaults, replace converters palette with new N1 palette for your track, run converter.
Also you will need to create load screens and LP files. Or AI cars in N1 will run like indycars.

N2/99/3 -> N1
There are two ways to do it:
1) You convert track to ICR2 using Dave Noonan converter. Then do everything like in case with ICR2 custom tracks. There is high chance that visual result will be worse than with method 2.

2) You convert track to ICR2 using Dave Noonan converter. But left only converted 3do files. Mip files from original track in N2 format you save to bmp and then to ICR2 mip without palette upgrade. Add this mips to converted to ICR2 track (you left there only 3do files). Now you need to create palette for N1 track that is based on N2/99/3 palette. We want to skip ICR2 stage to preserve texture quality. Now like in case with ICR2 custom tracks using Gerhard Lingenberg converter you may convert track. After this you need to fix 3do colors manually orwith some tricks using ICR2 to N1 converter or N1/ICR2 Mass Color Changers by Jaroslaw Polewka and Chas Bornemann.

Instead of using any converter for mips it's always better to use some paint programs. So in case of method 2 I at first convert all N2 mips to bmp with WinMip. Using PaintShop batch file processing load N1 prepared palette bmp's . You can now save textures to ICR2 mip manually with WinMip. But I use Chance32 tool. I use PaintShop script add one pixel row at the top and bottom of every bmp (this is needed to overcome small bug with Chance32 tool) and save files to pcx format. Again everything is done automatically by Paint shop using batch processing. Then I create list of files to be converted and using xs2mips.exe from Chance32 toolkit generate mips.

That's how it can be done Smiley So hardest thing is to create good N1 palette that gives nice looking track in Nascar 1.
Thanks for that awesome explanation Pavel. I have moved the topic to the N1 subforum.
(08-13-2021, 04:34 PM)Pavel 69 Wrote: [ -> ]N2/99/3 -> N1

2) You convert track to ICR2 using Dave Noonan converter. 


This was great information.  I was able to do the Las Vegas track from N99 to ICR2 using the Dave Noonan converter.  I added the appropriate .STP files into the .DAT for the N1 menu screen.  The track definitely loads and works.  But you are right, the palette is completely wrong.  I tried the MIP > BMP convert and back from the original N99 files but that didn't fix it.  I will have to keep trying.  I haven't tried doing the other image manipulation that you mentioned.  But this definitely gives me proof of concept.  It's strange because the textures look correct on the 3DO files within the graphical editor tool.  But they aren't right in the game.  What a shame.  The palette problem is definitely the most confusing part for me on this game -- as I sometimes have issues with painting cars and editing track textures.  Why does it have to be so obtuse?

I am so very close.  This gets me on the right track.  Any other encouragement?
You need to create palette for Las Vegas N1. Any mip-bmp manipulations are worthless without proper palette. Do you understand how papy games use palette, what part of it can be changed and what is game reserved?
(08-14-2021, 05:52 AM)Pavel 69 Wrote: [ -> ]You need to create palette for Las Vegas N1. Any mip-bmp manipulations are worthless without proper palette. Do you understand how papy games use palette, what part of it can be changed and what is game reserved?

No, I pretty much understand how everything works but the palette.  I just tried taking California (Fontana) from N99 and did the Dave Noonan convert.  But again, when I bring it into N1 after adding the .STP files to the .DAT from ICR2, the colors are all wrong.  I tried using the Mass Color Changers by Jaroslaw Polewka and Chas Bornemann, and it creates an .ini file.  But I don't know what values to change on the flavors.  I just don't grasp the palette concept.  I don't know what the palette file is or how to create/edit it.  The MIP>BMP look right.  The 3DO files in the 3DOED.EXE graphical interface.  If I load the track in the 3DO editor it looks perfect with textures turned on.  Just that the track looks like complete garbage in the game.  I can race it and all the cars look right.  So all the functionality is there.  I just need to figure out the palette thing and I think I will be in great shape.

3DO of CALIF (N99 > ICR2 > N1)
[Image: 3do.jpg]

[Image: calif.jpg]

At least my 48 Ally car looks good!  How can I fix the track palette?
I have discovered that the palette file is SUNNY.PCX. Things get wonky when I start changing that file in the DAT using other track's file instead. I guess I need to learn how to use this file so that the track looks correct. I'm just not up to speed on how to use that file correctly. Obvs the file is different between ICR2/N1/N2&99. If I can figure out the right conversion of this file, or how to properly edit it, I'd be able to convert basically any track.

How did you do this with your N2/99 > N1 track conversions listed on this site?
I will write details about palette after weekend.
(08-15-2021, 04:58 AM)Pavel 69 Wrote: [ -> ]Hi,
I will write details about palette after weekend.

Thanks Pavel, I definitely look forward to it.  Seems to be my last obstacle.


I found these instructions on how to use Sunny.pcx palette into GIMP and save back out all the BMPs to the palette of choice.  So I took the palette from your Daytona conversion as a base, and applied it to the 76 ball and saved it back out as MIP and packed the DAT.  I loaded up the track and everything looks like garbage except for that ball!  So it works!  Now i just gotta do all that legwork.  I wonder if I can batch that process?  Boof.

Update 2:

Okay well it is not working for every exported BMP. Some still export with the wrong colors. So back to the drawing board on some of these...

Update 3:

I found out that I was trying to edit MIPs that were already converted from the N99>ICR2, which was wrong. So I am doing the conversion instead on the original unpacked N99 track MIP files. That seems to work. Now to see if I can figure out a faster method so I don't have to do one MIP > BMP > Palette swap > BMP > MIP for every single file.
So here we go.
All Papyrus games up to Nascar 4 use just 256 colors. As you have found this palette colors are stored in palette pcx files: for sunny weather it is sunny.pcx, for cloudy weather – cloudy.pcx. Mip files (textures) don’t have colors inside, there are just indexes for colors that can be found in sunny.pcx. Each has its own palette file that has specific colors for track textures and game default colors that remain unchanged between all tracks across particular game. If you compare sunny.pcx from two different tracks from one game you will see that part of palette remains unchanged – that is game colors.

Problem is that until Nascar 2 all papy games had different default color section in palette. It looks like Papy experimented with different stock colors until they found optimized color collection. So all late games (N2, N99, N3 and NL) have the same palette structure so tracks can be easily interchanged between games.

So let look at N99 Atlanta palette file. Color indexes go from top left corner down to bottom right corner. With black background I marked game default colors (for N2, N99, N3 games):
#0 – black (0, 0, 0) – transparent color in game
#24 - #195 – set of default colors
#255 – white color (255, 255, 255)

All other colors (#1 - 23, #196 - #54) are track specific colors. For example indexes #212 – 214 are for concrete (marked with red), #215 – 219 are for asphalt (marked with blue), #220 – 228 are for grass textures (marked with yellow). In total there are 82 track colors and 174 game colors.

Now let take a look on N1 Atlanta palette. Again with black background I marked game default colors (for N1):
#0 (black 0,0,0) - #175 – set of default colors
#255 – white color (255, 255, 255)

Colors #176 - #254 are track specific colors. In total there are 79 track colors and 177 game colors.

So how to make N1 palette for converted track from N2/99/3? Because total track colors space is almost the same size between to palette files (82 in N99 and 79 in N1) you can simply transfer all track colors from N99 palette to N1 palette. You need to decide which 3 colors to left. You can try to find some similar colors among default N1 colors for replacement.

But in most cases is not enough to copy just track colors to palette. As I wrote above in N2-N3 palette default game colors are optimized. They are not so bright and colors set suits more for tracks. So N2, N99, N3 tracks usually use more colors from default palette part. But in most cases there are no equivalents for those colors in N1 default palette. So you need to decide how to deal with it. Most important is to have good looking asphalt, grass, walls and sky textures. So try to find places for colors to have this textures looks good in game.

So when you have palette you can load it in to textures. But don’t use converted to ICR2 mip’s. You need default textures from N2/99 track, convert them to bmp, load palette into bmp and then create N1 mip’s.
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