Colormaps Explained

Colormaps Explained

Description: by Paul Siramy

Categories: Tutorials (1.08)

talk about these files, so a knowledge of them is recomanded, despite
not mandatory :

(like grey2.dat)

This doc explain the way the game use (or don't use) some colors on some
items. It covers of course unique and set items, but also the socketing
of gems, and tell why amulets and rings are all looking the same, despite
there * is * some color info in some of them.
take an example and say you have a 'Sword of Ali Baba' in your
stash, how the game will know the right file to use, and the right colors
to put on it ?
uniqueitems.txt. Search 'Ali Baba'.
It is at the row 160.

= 1
invtransform = 1
transformcolor = 9
code = 9fc

description :

and invtransform are almost the
same thing. They are booleans. transform
is for the item in the animated version of the item, while invtransform
is for only the inventory (not animated) version. By animated I mean
equip yourself with the sword : your character will change a part of
his look (the right arm), and while fighting / standing / running /
... it is animated. If the item need to have its colors changed, they
are set to 1, if not they are set to 0 or left blank. Beware : in order
for the inventory version to be changed, the animated version * must *
be set to 1. In other words, you can only have 3 types of unique items

animated version
have colors replacement, while inventory version have not
both animated
and inventory versions have colors replacement
neither one of
this versions will have colors replacement

is impossible to have modified colors only in the inventory version,
and not in the animated one. If you want to modify the colors of the
inventory version, the animated will have (nearly) the same ones (as
for the * nearly * I'll speak of it later).
is the 'Tint' that the item will have. If you open the colors.txt
file, you'll have a description of them. There are 21 possible tints.
Here they are :

= white
  1 = light grey
  2 = dark grey
  3 = black
  4 = light blue
  5 = dark blue
  6 = crystal blue
  7 = light red
  8 = dark red
  9 = crystal red
10 = light green
11 = dark green
12 = crystal green
13 = light yellow
14 = dark yellow
15 = light gold
16 = dark gold
17 = light purple
18 = dark purple
19 = orange
20 = bright white

you're interested, you shall know that you can change these tints. Again,
I'll explain later. In our case the Ali Baba sword will be more 'crystal red'
than it is for now.

Now, open weapons.txt. Search the 9fc
item (the row having 9fc in the code
column, not in either normcode, ubercode
nor ultracode). This is the row 123

= invflc
uniqueinvfile = (blank)
Transform = 1
InvTransform = 2
is blank, so the game will take the value in invfile
instead ( invflc ). This is the
d2data.mpq\data\global\items\invflc.dc6 file. See the setinvfile
just near ? Same thing when the game have a set item to draw : it first
read the uniqueinvfile / setinvfile
column, this will tell which dc6 to take, but if it's blank, the game
will take the regular dc6 instead (invfile).
flippyfile is the animated dc6 used
when the item is dropped.
this point, a special note for Rings and Amulets. Open itemtypes.txt.
Ring have :

= 5
InvGfx1 thru InvGfx5
= invrin1 thru invrin5
(dc6 files again)
his how the game choose random gfx for ring / amu / charm / jewel.

and InvTransform this times are
NOT booleans as you can see. They are indexs. They tell which colormap
is to be used for each version of the item. A colormap (quickly) is
a table that indicate which colors are to be changed into another. These
colormaps can be found in d2data.mpq\data\global\items\palette. They
will be used each time the game need to apply a new tint to the item
: by socketing a gem in it, or to display either a unique or a set item.
'Which colors of the item are to be changed ?' is what the
and InvTransform
colums tell : choosing a different .dat file will make another colors
to change, and therefore will make a slightly different item.
tech notes (you can skip) :

The colormaps 'map' the colors, to obtain a replacement
for some of them. These colormaps are 5376 bytes. 256 bytes (a whole
palette's indexes) declined into 21 'tints'. Open the colors.txt
file, you see a description of the tints used by the game, from white
(index 0) to Bright White (index
20). Just think of a colormap as 'I get a pixel having the index
5 in the current palette. Now, I read the colormap to get the final
color. Tint is 1, so I'll use bytes from 256 to 511 in the .dat file.
Now, the pixel is index 5, so I take the 5th byte and I read : 15.
So, in the final bitmap, I put a pixel of index 15 (not 5) at these
place'. Should be enough to understand.

About palettes : you know what it is I suppose. In our case, the game
use some 256 colors palettes, found in d2data.mpq\data\global\palette.
Each directory in there contains 1 palette, in 2 format : the .dat
and the .pl2 ones. The .dat is easy : 768 bytes, Red Green and Blue
componants for each of the 256 index, ranging from 0 to 255. Be carefull
: these bytes are in the BGR order (not the usual RGB). The .pl2 format,
I know nothing about it.
course, if you're planing to make another colormaps, keep in mind
that the game use 5 palettes : 1 for each act, so you should only
map colors to the ones that never change, whichever the palette is
used (except if you want to make item that have part (or whole) of
their colors to change between the acts).

is the correspondance between the index of the
and InvTransform columns, and the
.dat colormaps :

= special meaning : no colormap used, item will never change
1 = grey.dat
2 = grey2.dat
3 = don't work, will do the same
effect as 0
4 = don't work, will do the same
effect as 0
5 = greybrown.dat
6 = invgrey.dat
7 = invgrey2.dat
8 = invgreybrown.dat
= will crash the game. Don't use value out of 0
and 8.
and 4 must have been for the 'brown.dat'
and 'gold.dat' files, but even if you try to use them, the
game will consider them as 0.

can use all available colormaps, for each version. That's it : you can
put 0, 1,
2, 5,
6, 7
or 8 in either / both Transform
and InvTransform columns. But be
aware that Blizzard used only some of them, as accordingly :

: 0, 1,
2, 5
in Transform,
and 0, 2,
5, 8
in InvTransform
: 0, 1,
2, 5
in Transform,
and 0, 1,
5, 8
in InvTransform
misc.txt : 0
(and this IS the reason why rings and amulets don't have another colors;
the .txt file tell to use the colormap 0,
which indicate 'no modifications'. Puting some value in
there will allow unique / set rings and amu (but not runes as I have
tested) to have another colors in their unique / set versions.

Back to the 'Tulwar' (you forgot it, right ?). So, our item
have a 2 in InvTrans
of weapons.txt. So, we will use the grey2.dat
colormap (remember the number = .dat table ?). These means that only the
grey colors will change, so the metal of this blade will be modified into
another tint, while the pommel (which is not grey) will stay the same.
Which tint ? The transformcolor in
the uniqueitems.txt will tell us : there
is a 9 for the 'Sword of Ali
Baba', therefore the 'Tulwar' will look more Crystal
Red than the original 'Tulwar'. Of course, for the
advanced-user, by changing the colormaps (.dat files) you can obtain cool
effects. But this is not the subject of this topic. Same method for the
column (animated item) : the game will use the grey.dat (not grey2.dat)
colormap, and will use the same tint (crystal red).
weapons.txt, misc.txt

= colormap to use for the animated version of the item
InvTrans = colormap to use for the
inventory version (ie : 5 means
important note : colormaps are needed for unique, set, and socketed
items. 0 will order the item to
stay the same as in its original version, whichever tint another .txt
file (like uniqueitems.txt) ask to
use. Rings, amulets and such have 0
in these columns, therefore this items always stay the same, but if
we put another value in it (say 8
for a global color modification) unique rings and amu will have tints
enabled. Check 'Dwarf Star', 'Raven Frost' or 'Atma's
Scarab' : they do have tint informations. With the use of the 8,
the tints will appears.


= tint (not colormap) to apply on the item, when the gem is socketed
into it. Unfortunatly, while in misc.txt
the choice of a 8 instead of a 0
works well with rings and amulets, it don't works with runes. Runes
can't *have* nor *make* any tint effect.


= Boolean. 'Will the colormap as defined into armor/weapon/misc.txt
will be use ?'. Only for the animated version of the item.
= same as above, but for the inventory version. Note that the inventory
version need to have the animated version to be set, to be useable itself.
= tint of the colormaps to be used (if can be applied) ranging from
0 to 20.
For having an idea, read the colors.txt


= same
as in uniqueitems.txt.
transformcolor = same as
in uniqueitems.txt.
Used for each items of the whole set.
have noticed that there isn't any invtransform
column in there. My guess is that the transform
column is used for both the animated and the inventory versions of each
items of the set.

may be some questions left, but I hope I have made it clearer. Oh, btw
check a program I send to this site too : dc6color. It will help you to
quickly see in a glance all the colors an item can have, and it's an help
if you want to easily change some colors (or make and test you're own colormaps).
Very usefull I think.

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