Thursday, October 20, 2016

Welcome Home

For better or worse, I'm making my way back here, Dragon Age spam and all. Once Pillowfort (a hopeful tumblr-replacer) opens up, if they're as good as I'm hoping, I'll hop over there for fandom stuff but my plan is to stay here for public personal posts, and LJ for private ones. With that said, at some point I'll migrate the rest of my Dragon Age meta stuff over here and give it a category at the top of the page (and move the UDK stuff within that category).

Also in the works, and I'm sorry for anyone who might still be around who doesn't care for DA, I'll be starting a complete Chronological Re-Read/Watch/Play/etc for everything Dragon Age to date. I have two lists that cover both the timelines and availability for each bit of media. And I mean everything--books, movie, flash and regular games, Tallis's webseries, comics... all of it. Even maybe the IDW comic. I didn't really like it, and didn't feel it really added much to the universe, but I like Ramos's art so there's that at least. And of course, I'll be chronicling all of it here. I don't know yet when I'll be starting it, though; I want to schedule it in a way that I won't have interruptions and FFXV at the end of next month will end up being a pretty big interruption.

So anyway, yeah. Follow me here, or if we know each other well enough send a friend request on LJ as well. Twitter is still @brennacedria. IG is brennacd. Everything linked through Google (here, YouTube, G+ if it's still around :p) is BrennaCeDria, as is my Skype.

Oh, and I wanna redo my theme. I have a header I love on my tumblr, but its format won't fit on this page. (Actually, I have an entire tumblr theme I customized that I adore, but ah, well.) Gotta figure that out sometime.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

30 Day Roleplaying Challenge Master Post (Temporary Cross-Post from Tumblr)

(Please note that this is not an original creation, only modified to be more general use than the versions I found. Credit for the site I found it on, at least, is linked in the post below.)

I’ve adapted this list from the one posted at a forum post at Gamer Launch (that's since been deleted) but decided to not adapt it quite-as-much toward Dragon Age specifically (which was my original idea) as just make it better rounded to fantasy OR sci-fi where things like technology, magic, etc are concerned so that it could also be used for Mass Effect, Star Wars, Skyrim, and god only knows what other characters. 
Start by naming your character, the fandom he or she is from, and (optionally) any background that might be relevant. Then start with the questions below!
1.) Describe your character’s relationship with their mother or their father, or both. Was it good? Bad? Were they spoiled rotten, ignored? Do they still get along now, or no? 
2.) What are your characters most prominent physical features? 
3.) Name one scar your character has, and tell us where it came from. If they don’t have any, is there a reason? 
4.) How vain is your character? Do they find themselves attractive? 
5.) What’s your character’s ranking on the Kinsey Scale? (AKA, orientation)
6.) Describe your character’s happiest memory. 
7.) Is there one event or happening your character would like to erase from their past? Why? 
8.) Day of Favorites! What’s your character’s favorite ice cream flavor? Color? Song? Flower?
9.) Who does your character trust? 
10.) Can you define a turning point in your character’s life? Multiples are acceptable. 
11.) Is there an animal you equate with your character? 
12.) How is your character with technology? Super savvy, or way behind the times? Letters or email? AND/OR, DEPENDING ON SETTING: How is your character with magic or the supernatural?
13.) What is your character’s primary flaw or weakness?
14.) How does your character react to temperature changes such as extreme heat and cold? 
15.) Is your character an early morning bird or a night owl? 
16.) Are there any blood relatives that your character is particularly close with, besides the immediate ones? Cousins, Uncles, Grandfathers, Aunts, et cetera. Are there any others that your character practically considers a blood relative? 
17.) What’s your character’s desk/workspace look like? Are they neat or messy? AND/OR What does your character’s bed look like when he/she wakes up? Are the covers off on one side of the bed, are they all curled around a pillow, sprawled everywhere? In what position might they sleep? 
18.) Is your character a good cook? What’s their favorite recipe or dish, whether they’re good at making it themselves or not? 
19.) What’s your character’s preferred means of travel? 
20.) Does your character have any irrational fears? 
21.) Does your character have a single underlying passion or trait that influences all aspects of their life?
22.) If your character could time travel (or otherwise return to any point in their own lives), where would they go? 
23.) Is your character superstitious? 
24.) What might your character’s ideal romantic partner be? 
25.) Describe your character’s hands. Are they small, long, calloused, smooth, stubby? 
26.) Second day of favorites! Favorite comfort food, favorite vice, favorite outfit, favorite hot drink, favorite time of year, and favorite holiday. 
27.) Pick two songs that describe your character at two different points of their life, and explain why you chose them. 
28.) If your character’s life was a genre, what would it be? 
29.) How does your character smell? Do they wear perfume or cologne? 
30.) And finally: Write a letter to your character, from yourself.

Monday, March 4, 2013

DA:O Custom Tint #6 - Violet and Lavender

MediaFire download here. Installation instructions can be found here.

This dye was something that I threw together while testing some stuff in the mod Of Noble Cast, which has become an absolute staple for my Cousland saves now. But the color of the gown that is included in it for a female Cousland just... doesn't match what my Elissa needed. This went through a few different versions, but after quite a bit of tweaking I managed to get the tints to take on the different materials of the gown (since some areas, like the belt, appear more leathery in texture while others are more silken). No before and after pics this time, but there is a copy of the tint map below the three example images in case anyone would like me to try other color schemes with this item!

Front View

Back View

Side View

Test Pattern Rear

Test Pattern Front

Friday, January 11, 2013

DA:O Custom Tint #5 - Shangrilla Jade

MediaFire download here. Installation instructions can be found here.

I'm going to come right out and say this: my "Shangrilla" Jade tint for the dye kit is without a doubt the best I've done so far and it was probably the second dye I finished. This isn't so much because of how it works on its original, intended application (though I absolutely adore the dye on its namesake outfit) but because I have yet to find an item it doesn't work on at some level. It was created for the mod item Shangrilla noble dress, which is gorgeous in its natural red, but the red isn't great on my canon Warden, thus the changes modeled here by my Elissa Cousland:

Front detail

Back detail

Bust detail

The lighting isn't the best for this dye in my usual test spot, which is why I included the bust detail as well here with some better light (as well as more boobs because damn, this dress!). Next comes the dye applied to other items! I think these are all of the others I've used it on so far:

Applied to the Phoenix Battlemaiden armor, modeled by KH's Moira Cousland

Applied to the Concept Robes, modeled by KH's Esme Amell
On the gown added to inventory by the mod Of Noble Cast, modeled by my Elissa
Loaded onto the elf mage robe design, modeled by my Neria Surana (front view)
The elf mage robes above (back view)
As you can see, this has turned out to be an incredibly versatile tint, something that cannot be said for many other dyes I've tried so far. Much more often, a tint seems to work on the item it's created for and maybe one other, but not the Jade! In addition, I do take requests on custom tints for the Shangrilla design, though the textures on that gown are quite a bit different than many of the other items so it might take a bit extra work compared to usual to get things right for you. Here are the tint maps for the item (it's mostly specced for mages, but it should work for any class for any non-boss battle according to the mod description) if anyone would like me to try one for you!

New tint downloads coming in the next day or two!

Sorry, it got busy here with the holidays so I had to go on a break from DA:O dye kit tints. I'm going to both be working on finishing another request this weekend (which will get put in the queue for image upload, at least, at some point) and on putting together another tint page or two for existing tints. I think I'll be putting up my favorite tint ever, my Shangrilla Jade, and another of the ones I made for one KH's characters (probably at least one of her Cousland's armor tints, this time, but I have two that are actually hers and two more that were WIPs that I saved as final files because they just worked all for the same armor so I'll have to pick one or two of the four total to upload this weekend).

Saturday, December 29, 2012

DA:O Custom Tint #4: Esme Amell Concept Art Robes

MediaFire downloads here and here for each of the two variations. Installation instructions can be found here.

This dye was done for a friend of mine on Tumblr, Kinlochhold, for her mage character Esme Amell. Esme is by far one of my favorite Warden characters out of the god-knows-how-many I've seen through the fandom, so making this for her was a blast. There were ultimately two variations that I made for this dye set, and since KH has given me permission to post the download links for her characters' tints for everyone to enjoy those can both be found above. Also for reference, the robes I'm using with this tint are available for download from the Dragon Age Nexus pages here!

Now then, for the tints themselves! The only difference between the two are going to be the sash across one hip, which is green in the first version and brown in the second. (Also, the bit of fabric stretching from the collar to the bodice takes on most of this same hue.) In both versions, I was trying to take what's normally a leather texture of the bodice and try to give it an almost gilded look--so that it looks like ornamental armor, but not with any sort of practical use. Other than that, I mostly just wanted to find a gorgeous green to play against Esme's hair.

Version 1, Direct Sunlight:

Version 1, Rear View:

Version 2, Direct Sunlight:

Version 2, Rear View:

Version 1, Bust Detail (And a slightly different hair style for comparison.)

Personally, I like Version 1 better on Esme specifically, but when playing with these dyes on other characters I think Version 2 is more versatile. It mostly just seems to depend on the character's coloring.

Custom DA:O Armor Tint Request Guidelines

So let's say, hypothetically of course, that you've been looking through these custom tint posts of mine and would like one for yourself. While I'm not perfect at this, I do love making these tints for others so I'd love to hear your request! There are, however, a few things I'll need from you in order to do the best job possible:

  1. Your actual request. This will usually be the name of an armor, weapon, or clothing from Dragon Age: Origins and a color scheme you want me to try. If the armor you'd like customized is a fan-made mod, it also helps to provide me a link to that mod's page on either Bioware Social Network or Dragon Age Nexus just in case I don't already have it. One thing to remember is that while some mod items are tintable, not all of them are. It just depends on how each mod's maker sets things up.
  2. Visual references for your character. Ideally, this will be either a copy of your save file or your character's .mor file for their head morph, so that I can have your character "try on" the tints directly as I make them. Doing things this way will give allow me to make the most accurate comparisons of coloring, texture, etc between the item I'm changing, the tint itself, and your character. The .mor file can be extracted using the Dragon Age Face Replacer, and until I get my tutorial for that tool updated I can walk you through it by email if necessary. Also, if you use any cosmetic mods for your character (hair styles, hair and eye colors, overall textures, etc) please let me know which you've used so I can make sure to install them myself if necessary. If you can't send either the .mor file or your save folder, I can try to work from screen caps of your character. The results from this won't be as accurate as the more direct methods, however.
  3. Once you have both of the above, you can get in contact with me any of a few different ways: by commenting on this post with information on how I can contact you, by sending an ask or fanmail via my Tumblr, or by emailing me your request directly to brennacedria at gmail dot com.
Keep in mind that some items can take the exact same tint in drastically different ways, so we'll work around that if and when it comes up as an issue. Otherwise, if there's something you'd like me to try and make for you don't hesitate to let me know!

Friday, December 14, 2012

DA:O Custom Tint #3: Revised Senior Enchanter Robes (Elf Pattern)

MediaFire download here. Installation instructions can be found here.

This dye was spawned off suggestions I was taking for a design to use for my elf mage character, Neria Surana. One of the responses I got was to make something maroon or burgundy, and while those colors are a bit too bold for the personality of my Neria, I really liked the idea of something similar to, but richer than, the default Senior Enchanter robe colors. This dye was created with the elf robe design in mind, and in my opinion looks much better there than on the human Circle robes. When applied to the elf robe model in these screen caps, though, this is probably one of my favorite dyes I've made so far.

Here's the final tint from various angles and light sources

Front View, Medium Light:

Back View, Medium Light:

Front View, Bright Light:

Front View, Indoors:

Original Elven Senior Enchanter design from the game:

The same dye applied to the human Circle mage robe design; as I mentioned above, it works well enough, but I prefer this dye on the elf design:

Finally, the test patterns for the front and back of the elf robes, in case anyone would like to request a custom tint:

Thursday, December 13, 2012

DA:O Custom Armor Tints #2: Morrigan in Blue

(Because this dye was made as the result of a specific request, it is not currently available for download. I will take requests for other custom dyes for Morrigan's design, however, and have included the test patterns at the bottom of this post.)

This was a very quick, simple dye made for a friend on Tumblr. The only tricky part to this one was getting the Red and Green dye channels to come out more or less the same shade due to different materials. First and most importantly is the finished result:

It's difficult to see the color on the pants and the left sleeve in this lighting, but they're the same dark navy as I have Morrigan's top here and the feathers on her left shoulder are part of the same channel as the pants and that one sleeve. Compare it to the default coloring:

I'll admit, I actually had to do a double-take to make sure I had the right settings to take this comparison screen cap because of another mod I normally use that makes her top purple instead of maroon. But if you look at this versus the completed tint above, you can see the subtle differences in the pants and sleeve a bit in addition to the drastic change in her feathered pauldron.

Finally, the test patterns for reference, in case anyone else would like a custom tint made for Morrigan's robes:

Monday, December 10, 2012

DA:O Custom Armor Tints Install Guide

Installing Armor Tints
So, you've installed the Universal Dye Kit to your Dragon Age: Origins game and are ready to start using custom dyes in addition to the eight default dyes that are included. Assuming you used the default install paths for your game, the next thing you'll want to do is open your Override Folder:

In most cases, that will "Libraries > Documents > BioWare > Dragon Age > packages > core > override" like above. With your override open, create a new folder and name it whatever you want. "Armor Tints" is probably the easiest to begin with, so that's how I'll be referring to your tint folder from this point forward.

The first thing to be aware of is that you can only use up to eight tint files in this override folder at a time--the game will NOT recognize any more than that. (There is an alternative method to use up to sixteen custom tints at a time, but I'll discuss that later. In my opinion, if you need more than eight tints, it's easier to create multiple tint folders--one for each Warden character you have--and only have one of these folders in your override at any given time than it is to replace the default tints.)

Now then, there is a default format for your tint files' names that must be used if the game is going to recognize them. All tint files must follow the pattern of "t3_nez_us(#).tnt" so the tint that corresponds with "user1" will be named "t3_nez_us1.tnt", "user2" will be "t3_nez_us2.tnt" etc. This is important, because when you download my tints from MediaFire their names are going to be slightly different! In the case of my House Cousland-colored Armor of the Black Fox, for instance, the file my download link points you to is "t3_nez_us(ABFCousland).tnt"; just like the (#) in the format example, you'll need to replace the parentheses and everything in them with a single-digit number from 1-8.

Once a tint file is downloaded and renamed, just cut/paste it into the Armor Tints subfolder of your override and the installation is done! If you ever want to remove or replace it, just delete the file or cut/paste it to another location.

Accessing Installed Tints
Once in the game, access the dye kit menu by buying the kit from Bodahn in camp, or by adding it in using the developer console (instructions for that are included at the UDK link at the top of this page). Use the item like any other, and when you exit the inventory menu the dye kit interface will open automatically. The main menu of the UDK interface has six options:
  1. colored dyes... (default tints)
  2. custom dyes... (tints that you have either downloaded or created yourself and installed using the above instructions)
  3. dye removal/special dyes (allows you to revert to the original tints and to access the test patterns for whatever equipment your controlled character is currently wearing; the test patterns are the RED/GREEN/BLUE colored guide images I will normally be posting as part of an individual tint's summary)
  4. camera views... (allows you to see multiple angles on the currently controlled character)
  5. open the portable enchanter (allows you to apply runes to your equipment no matter where you are, even the middle of the Deep Roads or on the roof of Fort Drakon while you fight the Archdemon!)
  6. close the dye kit
Play around with the other options all you like--especially the special dyes option if you ever decide to make your own tints--but the one you'll need here is #2's custom dyes. Once within the custom dyes submenu, you'll have your first four options listed as user1 through user4, an option to go to the next page, and an option to go back. The next page will have dyes 5-8. Pick the one you like and the dye will apply to your currently equipped items!