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Carma general

(Last update: 02-2003)

ID has set the trend by making Quake I very editable. Later Q3A came out as open source, and Stainless followed the same strategy when releasing Carmageddon 2 wich is very editable, too. This way many people, with more or less 3D experience can create their own mods, add-ons or even total conversion. Many people can have their first experience with 3D design, because of the simple and free tools available for C2. And the game is just the greatest racing game available, much better then just the usual boring 'driving around as fast as you can'.

So you opened up your Carma 2 folder and browsed a bit through the files to find anything editable. You probably only found a bunch of .TWT files, and dissappointed you tried the game as it is.
Don't worry; All these .TWT files are just packages of other files and the only thing you need is a .TWT unpacker.
Great, you say, I thought about that already...


OK, first some essentials:

- First thing you'll want is Carstockalyps. This little program will first unpack DATA.TWT and make it possible this way to install new cars you downloaded from ... this page.
- Next one is TWT-suite, wich consists of two separate programs, TWT-unpacker and TWT,...OK. (260Kb)
- If you're an advanced car-tweaker, cheater, designer you will need Cared. With this program you can edit the 3D models of the cars or build entirely new cars from scratch.
Cared is a Java program, so you will need the Java runtimes as well. Read more at the paragraph about car-building.
- Last but not East; For the hardcore editors: Plaything 2 by Stainless themselves and used by the makers of the original cars. (3MB)
You can get these programs from this site, although you can find them on several Carma sites.

File Types

In these .TWT files you will find files like:
.TXT files. These files are what they seem to be; Text-files. Open up with notepad.
.WAM files. Also text-files. Damage behavior.
(Most of the settings have their explanation in comments.)
.ACT files. Actors, used by the game to apply defined physics to. Not much to edit.
.DAT files. 3D models (Polygone-modeling)
.PIX files. Graphics in game specific format.
.TIF. Editable TIFF graphics. Equivalents of the .PIX files.
Other files:
.ASC files: 3D models in ASCII format, open up with Notepad
.OBJ files: Cared data files. Specialized ASCII files
.SDF files: Stainless Plaything 2 files, just text files.
SAVEDGAME.ARS: Your saved game, exchange with your friends.
.3DS files: 3D Studio model.

Example: DATA.TWT

Ok, let's start to unpack all these .TWT files.
Ho wait !!
Why do think all these files are packed? Because otherwise your HD will be cluthered with a lot of small files, and unless you have a FAT32 formatted HD this will consume a lot of HD space.
Besides of that, I think it's wise not to unpack .TWT files into the Carma folder. Find a separate working folder to avoid strange crashes, because you saved the wrong file.
Another thing is, a .TWT file is considered to be a folder; Browse to your ..\datacars folder. You will find Fair.TWT. If you want to extract this car, you have to extract the contents into ..\datacarsfair (And remove Fair.TWT).

Let's start unpacking DATA.TWT.
Oh dear, no data.twt !!
You have used Carstockalypse and you'll find data.twat, opponent.txt, races.txt etc. No need for unpacking.
Otherwise you have to unpack. Don't forget to rename data.twt into data.whatever.

All the cars installed in the game, so new cars will be installed into this file as well.
Change settings, add new cars, or move your favorite car (mine's the Hawk 3) to place nr. 0; This will be your first car then, without any buying.

Don't like the missions? To difficult ! Change some settings here.

Change all the text strings in the game. Create a Carma in your own native language; German, Flemish, Frysian or Tukker Carmageddon. Or just to make it more child-friendly.

All options, including hidden options.

To make it easy for you lazy guys I put all these data files into one ZIP - file.

Creating new cars

Cared is the first choice for this. Cared is just a Java based, simple 3D modeller, for use only with Carma 2. It's a Java Application and it's free. You can also use Zmodeler but that's more complicated. Using Cared you won't need Plaything 2.
Cared needs the Java OpenGL runtime, so you need both an OpenGL compatible graphic-adapter and these runtimes. You can get the JRE from the Java Site (7.5MB); The current OpenGL Java version on the Java site is not compatible with Cared. You will need this one.
Version 1.13 of Cared has an extended tutorial included, so read this to start creating your first car.
When you have some more experience you can use Plaything 2 to add graphics and set up the car and 3D Studio Max for 3D modelling. But Plaything is really instable and 3D Studio Max costs about $4000,- ...
Most of the character of a car is defined by both the .TXT and the .WAM and you have to edit these files manually (Most defaults of Cared are not very suiting for your car).

You can also start with editing existing cars in the game. Unpack one of the .TWT files in the cars folder into ..datacars folder, extract the PIXIES.P08 and PIXIES.P16 using Cared. Converse the .TGA files into .TIF's. Put the car at place nr. 0 in OPPONENT.TXT (top of the list in Carstockalypse) and start editing, testing, editing, testing etc.
Remember to move away the original .TWT to a save place.
When editing graphics you can change the .TIF or .TGA files in the TIFFRGB subfolder with a paint program. Carma will converse these graphics (TIFF only) into .PIX files.

Creating cars for Carma 1 is possible, but very complex. If you want to create cars for TDR 2000 (Carma 3) you will need 3D studio Max and have a look at Lord of Destruction for tutorials.
I'm running Carma 2 on a Pentium II, 384 MB RAM, and 64MB GeForce2 MX, running Windows XP and playing with keyboard control. The vehicles on this page are optimized for this configuration. Because Carmageddon 2 is using older techniques a Pentium 4 will not necessarily be faster than an Pentium 2.

Car building/editing is like learning HTML. Look to a lot of other examples to know how to do things.
Finally I can tell you my first car (Datsun) took me about 30 hrs work...

Creating new tracks

Creating add-on maps is much more complicated than creating cars, because;
- You need a good 3D modeller because Cared has difficulties with the huge models involved with tracks.
- You need Plaything 2 for skinning and Plaything 2 is a disaster (very instable).
- You can't just add a track because the game's based on ten times three races with a mission to complete.
- You can't just unpack the race .TWT files, because the graphics are stored in a special way.