Tutorial [TUTORIAL] Adding new monster parts to Starbound

Discussion in 'Starbound Modding' started by JellyGem, Feb 10, 2014.

  1. JellyGem

    JellyGem Starship Captain

    So, you want to spice up the creature variation a little bit? Have little knowledge of coding but want to but your spriting skills to use? Then, you came to the right place! Keep in mind, although I am writing this tutorial, I have very little coding knowledge so making more dramatic changes besides inserting new sprite parts is something I can't really help you with.

    First, you are going to want to acquire some templates for your sprites. The way they appear in the game is based on how they're placed in the .png file, so it's very important that you follow the templates. I'm going to work on making a template for each monster type (not done yet) but for this example, let's make our own little template using the small bipedal head category.

    IMPORTANT: All the files you are gonna be using are located in assets/monsters/and then either 'flying', 'ground', or 'swimming' depending on which type of monster you want to make. To find your starbound folder, go to Steam and on your game list (left-hand side) right click on 'Starbound'>properties>local files>browse local files

    Now that that's out of the way, let's go to ground>smallbiped>organic>head>flower. Let's make a copy of this folder and paste it back into the head subfolder, and then open the copy. This is to avoid getting rid of the original head. We will see a flowerhead.monsterpart file and a flowerhead.png file.


    Open flowerhead.png in your favorite art program, preferably one with layers. You should see this: Screen Shot 2014-02-09 at 9.30.04 PM.png
    [ignore the dark grey space, that's just the background of my art program]
    You will notice that all the sprites look similar, but not identical. They're all different frames/poses, idle is when the monster isn't moving, ground move cycles quickly through those 8 frames as the monster walks, jump is, well, jumping, and I think you get the rest. Notice the dimensions of the sprites. You want to keep the neck the same length as the original, so that it connects to the body properly. Obviously, this applies to body sprites as well. You don't need to worry about the other dimensions too much. Also, note the color palette: Those 6 colors will automatically be replaced with random colors when the monster spawns, so if you want something to always stay a constant color (i.e. the eyes are always black) be sure to draw them in as black.

    Take care in making the idle sprite, then make copies of it and carefully place the copies over the originals (on a different layer!!) making sure the necks line up. Edit them as you see fit.

    Screen Shot 2014-02-09 at 9.35.07 PM.png

    Hooray! Here's a spritesheet I made.
    Screen Shot 2014-02-09 at 9.39.23 PM.png
    Now, save the file and rename it. Let's go with 'bobhead.png'

    Now open the flowerhead.monsterpart up. Change the first line from "flowerhead" to "bobhead", ensuring that everything else is the same. Do the same with the 'head' line.The other info in the monsterpart file is the noise the creature makes. You will see this one has the spidermonkey sounds, but you are able to change them of course.

    NOTE: Make sure you use a code-based editor to make changes, such as Gedit, as a normal editing program has
    incompatible quotation marks, and other symbols, that will cause it to not work.
    ((Almost done. To get your changes to show up in-game, you have to re-pack your files. Refer to the stickied tutorial on this if you're unsure how))

    Well, that's really it! Actual templates are upcoming, i'm working on them. Make sure you rename the .monsterpart file and the actual file (containing both things we talked about) to match the rest. Whalla, a working monsterpart! If your part refuses to work for some reason, always remember to check the starbound.log file and see what went wrong. You can easily make mods with your finished files without replacing any of the original assets. Have fun!

    [NOT DONE YET *will be available for download*]

    Small Bipedal: smallbipedbase.png [head]
    smallbipedbody.png [body]

    Quadruped: quadhead.png [note, neck is on the right side this time, not bottom] quadbod.png [body] quadtail.png [tail]
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2014
    The | Suit likes this.
  2. The | Suit

    The | Suit Agent S. Forum Moderator

    To be fair the issue is not just for mac users. It can happen to windows users also.
    The problem is when you don't use a code based editor to write your code.
    You want a text editor which is strictly UTF-8

    one free option available to all 3 operating systems is Gedit

    Also great tutorial.
    You probably should mention about how to double check the correct color code via hex or rgb.
  3. JellyGem

    JellyGem Starship Captain

    Ah, i'll fix that, thanks! And Yeah, I'm going to put a color palette and all the templates in a .zip once I finish them, so people can easily download all of it. c:

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