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Official setup guide for the free DLC that contains the original Eurocom toolset.

This small guide will show you how to configure the environment to use the original suite of tools that Eurocom made in 2003 to develop Sphinx. Allowing you to open and edit the original assets as well as creating your own content from scratch.

Keep in mind that the while the game itself is now cross-platform, most of the original development happened in Windows and used Microsoft tech like Win32 and MFC, so Linux and macOS modders may want to use something like Wine to run the tools. Which, while not ideal, should work perfectly fine.

Download and first steps Edit

First things first, download the free DLC with the required tools and data from your Steam client.

(Ensure that you own the game first and that you have it installed, you will need around 7.2 GB of total free space, even the actual download size is much more manageable; at ~1.9 GB)

Keep in mind that the DLC doesn't get installed by default due to its size, you will have to click on the "Install" checkbox in the DLC section of your Steam client, right under achievements. Like this:

Sphinx-authoringtools-download

The Steam client should immediately start to download, it may take a while.

Access the Tools folder Edit

Once downloaded and conveniently installed in your PC you can find them in your Tools folder, right under the base directory of the game.

The easiest way to open it is to right-click on the Sphinx entry of your Library, select "Properties"...

Sphinx-authoringtools-properties

...switch to the "Local files" tab and then click on the "Browse local files" button. The precious Tools folder should be there.

Sphinx-authoringtools-browse

Mounting the virtual drives Edit

EngineX and its tools need a virtual X: drive that points to the Tools folder. In addition, we also need to add a virtual S: drive to emulate the internal Eurocom server that stored the common project files for Sphinx.

In the end it's just a matter of running a batch script once that will do it for you. We have prepared a handy one called Mount Both Virtual Drives Permanently.bat; just double-click, run it as administrator and it should ask you to reboot. Once you are back you should see two new virtual hard disks.

To unmount them just run the script again and reboot. Easy peasy!

Sphinx-authoringtools-mountscript

If you prefer something a bit less permanent you can double-click on the Mount Virtual S Drive.bat and Mount Virtual X Drive.bat scripts instead. These virtual drives will be gone the next time you reboot, and (of course) you don't need to reboot to get the drives to appear if you choose this second method.

Note: The X: drive now points to the Tools folder, while the S: drive points to the Tools/ServerX folder. Ensure that you don't have any real partitions using those drive letters.

Sphinx-authoringtools-virtualdrives

Making sense of EuroLand Edit

You can find EuroLand under the EngineX/utils folder. It is the all-in-one editor used to open the source asset files (or *.ELF) that you can find under Sphinx/Grafix. These EngineX containers store most of the actual data in the game; maps, 3D models, textures, character animations and beyond.

Sphinx-authoringtools-eurolandexe

You will actually see two executable files: EuroLand.exe and EuroLandRedux.exe, these are two different versions of the same editor, but for the sake of simplicity you'd usually prefer to use the latest one; EuroLand Redux.

Opening our first .ELF file Edit

Let's start with something familiar. Go to Sphinx/Grafix/Maps/Uruk_sphinx/retouch, you'll find a _ur_intr.elf file, the one that stores the map with the initial Sphinx level in Uruk. Drag and drop it in the EuroLand window, a tree view should appear after a few seconds.

You can see that the "Entities" tree is the one with the most entries, those are the static 3D models used as scene props in the map. There is also a "Textures" tree with the images used by those models, and several other ones. But right now we are mainly interested in the map itself.

Sphinx-authoringtools-treeviewmap

Scroll down until you find the "Maps" section and double-click on "LAND1" to open it, the other maps are crossed out because they won't be included when you export the .ELF into a baked and optimized, game-compatible .EDB file.

Sphinx-authoringtools-mapview

Maximize the map window to make things bigger, here are some quick tips to move the camera around:

  • You can zoom in and out with the scroll wheel.
  • Pan the camera by pressing the middle mouse button/scroll wheel while moving the mouse.
  • You can rotate the camera around by pressing the left mouse button while holding the Alt key.
  • If you ever get lost you can press the A key to display the entire map at once.
  • You can always view and rebind all the available hotkeys by going to View > Hot Keys... in the menu bar.

Feel free to explore Uruk for a while until you gain a bit of experience. We can start selecting things after that.

Sphinx-authoringtools-mapview-underbar

Take a look at this menu bar below the 3D view, it is extremely important. By default you can see that "Entity" is enabled, if you left-click on the terrain it will select chunks of it, rendering its wired polygons in red. You can deselect by right-clicking in an empty-gray part of the level, just like that.

Now let's click on "Sound", you can see that the other modes get untoggled. In this mode we won't be able to click on the terrain itself, but we can now select those yellow sound sources in exchange. Try it, you will see that this time around selecting a sound will entail clicking precisely on the cross that marks its center, that's too bad.

Luckily for us EuroLand comes with a second selecting mode; lasso. If you drag the mouse while holding the right mouse button you will see how you can make circular selections around objects.

In fact, the previous deselection method is just using the lasso tool in an empty area. How convenient! Try selecting and deselecting multiple sound sources using the lasso tool.

{Thingie in progress...}

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