Freeworlds: Tides of War is a fan built Star Wars total conversion mod for Digital Anvil's Freelancer game that was released several years ago. When fans began to make mods for Freelancer, one of the many things people were keen on seeing was a Freelancer mod based on the Star Wars universe developed by George Lucas. Freeworlds and Tides of War were the answer to this outcry. The development team of both mods have now joined forces to create an epic new Star Wars TC, Freeworlds: Tides of War.

Post news Report content RSS feed Freeworlds: Tides of War - Glow maps, explosions and other things pretty

This news piece contains multiple images showing the new glow maps that are being placed onto all 108 ships in the game, to make them look much more realistic and pretty! Furthermore, it showcases a new explosion FX created by FriendlyFire and some new models/textures done by Arvis Taljik.

Posted by FW:ToW_Sushi on Jul 24th, 2009

A glow map is a second texture placed over the first that resists change in light intensities. Locations where these second textures are most noticable, are areas of low light levels. In these low lighting conditions, you'll see what looks to be like a "glow" being emitted from the model. At FW:ToW, we also believe these glow maps breathe a lot of life into these models and adds that much more detail to the game. And, when dealing with a mod that takes place 95% of the time in space, everything you can do to increase the detail threshold, while not scraficing gameplay, you'll do.

Forutnately, we have a developer who has devoted himself over the next few weeks in glow mapping all our 108 ships, including some of their cockpits. Icewolf has recently posted some images up on this site, but I also wanted to take the time to show you some other ones he did not. He's done a fabulous job so far, and I cannot tell you how thrilled we are to see this work being done.

MC 90



Immobilizer 418

R2-D2 (He needs a little glow mapping love, too)


Now, onto many peoples favourite part about games; explosions. For those of you that have played Freelancer before have noticed that the explosions in the game aren't that great. Fortunately, though, Lancer Solarius cracked the effect files that contain the content of how these explosions work. There have been many people trying to get explosions to look more real. As some of you probably noticed, our fighter explosions are great, thanks solely to Why485 who worked on them. Now, to match this for our capital effects, we needed to bring in another effect expert into the mod, FriendlyFire. He has been generous enough to take my offer to join our team, time permitting. And, thus far, he's doing a fabulous job. This is a video of his prototype of our new capital ship exploision.

As you can see, this is a million times better than the explosions we had in the past. Our team is extremely fortunate to have someone of FriendlyFire's talent, and determination, with us.

New Mon Calamari Capital Ships

Lastly, in the news piece, I wanted to show you the work of Arvis Taljik, creator of the Clone Wars: Tides of War and Old Republic: Tides of War mods. I gave him the task of redoing our MC 40 and MC 80 textures, because compared to our older stuff, they seemed extremely lacking. So, he went to work, using EvilleJedi's models as a base, and adding extra pieces and a whole new texture, UV map and glow maps to them. He was able to complete this complex task, very quickly, with amazing results; but I'll let you guys be the judges of that. Here are some before and after shots:

MC 40a



MC 80



Anyways, I hope you enjoyed our latest new piece! I also wanted to express my gratitude towards Templar, who with the assistance of MODDB Administrators, have helped transform our Moddb site to what you see here.

As always, any questions, comments or suggestions are wanted!


Post comment Comments
tnathan475 Jul 24 2009 says:

Looks excellent.

+2 votes     reply to comment
dill1233 Jul 24 2009 says:

I actually think that the before's were better just because the new ships practically look like a quilt. I'd either lessen the darkness on the lines separating the metal sheets or come up with another idea to make them look less patchy. Either way, I love the explosion and the glow maps look perfect. On second thought, though, I'd make the ship look torn up as it goes through damage. So, it doesn't seem like it completely blows up after one tiny shot.

+3 votes     reply to comment
TSP-FriendlyFire Creator
TSP-FriendlyFire Jul 24 2009 replied:

Except Freelancer does not support scorchmarks of any kind. Also, the ship usually has far more pre-death effects; this was just an extremely modified setting for just showing the explosion itself.

+1 vote   reply to comment
FW:ToW_Sushi Author
FW:ToW_Sushi Jul 24 2009 replied:

Ya, as FF metioned, there are numoerous other FX that occur as these capital ships loose hull. For a better idea of what they're like, watch this video:

+1 vote   reply to comment
Stealthman Jul 25 2009 says:

Amazing, can't believe this is Freelancer Engine.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Dalmp Aug 13 2009 says:

Yeah, this team is amazing, and I am absolutely adoring the great work being done. But the moncal here looks better in the before shot imo. It probably looks better in-game I imagine, but the screenshots make those weird grey lines stand out a lot.

+1 vote     reply to comment
FW:ToW_Sushi Author
FW:ToW_Sushi Aug 13 2009 replied:

Well, I have to respectfully disagree with you here. The old MC texture was extremely pixelated on the ships. When you got up close, they looked like someone literally vomited on the ship (serious, no joke!) Those "weird grey lines" are hull plate lines, which is very reminiscent of the Home One MC style . We're going to make some adjustments to the MC textures, but, they're leaps and bounds better than what we had.

Nevertheless, thanks for the compliments.

+1 vote   reply to comment
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Released Apr 11, 2014
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