SOD Importer for 3DS Max =ALL VERSIONS=

Talk about anything related to old versions of Armada.
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posted on August 28th, 2013, 3:25 am
Last edited by Mr. Vulcan on August 30th, 2013, 6:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Hi everyone,

I think it's about time that I release this much requested, and controversial bit of maxscript code. I've had a hectic summer, so forgive the delays. Been promising this for a while now; so here it is :)


Use responsibly! Modding communities are built upon trust and respect for fellow modders. Please respect the work of those that came before you and seek permissions from authors before editing and releasing anything that is not personal work.

By using these scripts, you agree to abide by the “Don’t be a **** principle”. Cheers :)

So there you have it. Please keep things clean and fun for everyone.

NOTE: this imports animations *

* I tried to keep the fidelity of imported models as close as possible to the SODs, but there will always be some errors due to coordinate system transforms, different representations of material properties, and just plain old bugs.

There are a few known issues with the importer:

• At present, models with a large number of lighting materials (greater than 24) will not display the lighting materials in the materials editor. This in itself is not a bug, but a limitation in 3dsMax. However, there have been occasions when this issue caused an import error.
• The render script occasionally misinterprets self-illumination info from the SOD, using the alpha for transparency instead of self-illumination. Correct manually in the materials editor when encountering this problem.
• Some models may set the self-illumination level too low. Correct manually via materials editor.

Please don't yell at me when things don't work right away. I have done rather limited testing on a variety of models from A1, A2 and FleetOps, but for the most part, the process works just fine.

Mr. V

EDIT: Updated to version 1.0.1 Bugfix


3dsMax SOD Import
(495.9 KiB) Downloaded 593 times
posted on August 28th, 2013, 3:46 am
YAY! :woot: Finally, I can figure out how shipyards work. :D Thanks Mr. Vulcan. :thumbsup:
posted on August 28th, 2013, 8:59 pm
i keep getting import failed (running on 3dmax2012 and tried on a few stock and fo models just to see how it worked)
posted on August 28th, 2013, 11:00 pm
Thank you very much for this. Let's hope that this time people respect the work of others and get permissions from the original authors before releasing any edited ships/stations and such.
posted on August 29th, 2013, 12:10 am
Have you extracted all 3 scripts into a single folder? Can you tell me which FO models you were trying to import?

I am in the process of adding better error messages to the importer, as well as the exporters. Hoping to release an update in a few days, or sooner.
posted on August 30th, 2013, 6:30 pm
Updated to version 1.0.1

Blade: this update might fix the problems you were having. Please let me know if this one is any better.
posted on August 30th, 2013, 6:55 pm
yay seams to work but trying to import the stock a2 fconst i get 'Unsupported Version. Old SOD Format'
and then it doesnt load
posted on August 31st, 2013, 12:58 am
Some of the stock SODs use an older format which has been little difficult to interpret. For now, I just have an error message for those SODs, but will add in the support eventually.

Unfortunately, it is the models that people tend to import first, like the sovereign class, that were created first, and thus use the older format.
posted on September 1st, 2013, 11:31 am
ah ok so this would be like importing a1 models or do u mean older versions of sod than those?
cant really check at the moment as laptop finally gone in for repairs (max 2 weeks :'( )
posted on September 1st, 2013, 4:56 pm
There have been numerous revisions to the SOD format during the game creation process. The latest A1 format is of version 1.80, and the earliest that I came across is version 1.40.

A2 inherited a lot of the models from A1, and as such can also have SODs that are as old as version 1.40. The latest version in A2 appears to be 1.93. (versions above 1.80 implement the self-illumination stuff)

Prior to version 1.70, the file structure of the SOD is different. Normally materials data is recorded first, and then comes the nodes data (hierarchy). However, this appears to be reversed in versions prior to 1.70. I simply haven't been able to go through the older versions in a good hex editor to know exactly how the SODs are structured.

For now, the importer only supports versions 1.80, 1.91 and 1.93, which does cover the vast majority of SODs in the A1 and A2. Rest assured, I intend to implement all versions at some not to distant point in time in the future.

posted on August 20th, 2014, 9:31 pm
I hope you have a version out soon that deals with A1 models. Been wanting to rework a few to make them more modern.
posted on August 20th, 2014, 10:31 pm
Destroyer92 wrote:I would like to point out that any model made for STA1 isnt compatable. It give an error; "Unsupported version. Old SOD format."

I've been trying to get a few of the models from Armada 2, but they didn't update many of the models, just copied them from A1.

Would it be possable for you, Mr. Vulcan, to set it up to accept A1 models, or at the very least, make a separate one for that?

There hasn't been much interest in having the ability to import older models. Likely because the locked importer for milkshape can already import the older models, and very little can be gained from examining the older models.

Out of affinity for completeness, I would have liked to provide compatibility with all SOD formats. Unfortunately, my time is severely limited right now. My recommendation for now would be to use the milkshape importer, or to work with more advanced artwork from other sources (eg, import from other games and authors).

Having said that, I am still supporting the exporter and importer with bug fixes and technical support. If you run into problems with either tool, please do let me know I'll try to help.

Mr. V
posted on December 3rd, 2014, 8:47 pm
Would it be possible to make a SOD importer for Blender?
posted on November 20th, 2016, 8:51 am
If you comment-out all the lines that try to get the map to be rendered in the viewport, the script will run perfectly in gmax.
posted on November 23rd, 2016, 7:16 pm
Thanks for reporting your findings, TChapman500, that's good to know.
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