CEP 2 Project - Cosmetic Appearances - Shortlist

In a CEP 2 Builders’ Poll, we agreed to declutter low-quality creature models by adding the prefix [Deprecated] to the appearance description (but only when a better alternative is available).

To ensure compatibility, no models will be removed. Low-quality ones will just be a little harder to find.

As a community, we greatly appreciate the efforts of model-makers over the years, but recognise that some models are now not quite up to modern standards. Though necessarily subjective, the team has drawn up a shortlist, based on meeting any of the following criteria:

  • angular or unnatural shape (low poly)
  • unconvincing texture
  • dubious animation

with the provisio that official models aren’t shortlisted.

A model is deemed to be a “better alternative” even if it has to be scaled.

Here’s a shortlist of models that can be deprecated immediately (the suggested replacement is just an example - in many cases, there are several models that would serve) :

Creatures to be deprecated now v01.txt (9.5 KB)

This is the shortlist of models for which we will seek a better alternative in the second phase of the project:

Creatures needing replacement v01.txt (8.3 KB)

What we’re looking for in this thread is comments from CEP 2 builders on these shortlists.

We can’t please everyone, but we’ll lean towards removing models from the shortlist if there are objections, and including other models if the suggestion gets likes.

1 Like

So ducking through

On the various crocodile sides, a lot of the various crocodilians are specifically different species and wouldn’t be served from just being replaced. It may be my Big Animal Nerd side coming out, but alligators and Deinosuchus are very much their own thing. The ‘Texture needed’ stuff can definitely go (seriously I was in the CCP and not even sure why we had those ones) as they’re just older versions of Hydromancer’s later stuff, but the type of nerd like me who wants a seperate entry for ‘Gharial’, ‘Sarcosuchus’ and, let’s just throw a Phytosaur in for good measure, ‘Rutiodon’, will grumble at them being merged together

I’m also personally ehh on the cyclops replacement, but that’s both because Goblin Queen’s cyclops are Harryhausen to the core and frankly I’d look at replacing Demigog’s before I touched Goblin Queen’s but, this is my stopmotion appreciation talking and I’m unsure how other folks would be who aren’t as tied to that

No notes to the various alternate giants and trolls? I kow a lot of the scrags in particular have texture mishmash issues out the wazoo (this may just be my dislike of a lot of the gaussian blurring that was used on those)

Yes, these and other crocodilians mentioned are edge cases, which could move to the second list.

Breaking this out as a separate issue, is your proposed solution to move all the Cyclops to the second list, on the grounds that Cyclops 1 is not a suitable replacement?

Not so far, but comments welcome.

This is all great feedback, by the way.

Well, moreso the two cyclops have a completely vibe to 'em. Or, honestly, I don’t like that Demigog’s are just “Vanilla ogre with a new head”

But once again this is probably going to come to more people using cyclops who aren’t me and start going off about claymation at the slightest reason and which one they prefer to use

I’ll take that as a “yes” for the purposes of this project, i.e. Cyclops 1 will not be replaced, the others are candidates for replacement, but no suitable replacement exists, therefore they move to the second list.

I am suprised that only relatively new models are in those lists and not models from CEP1. These needs the facelift the most.

All elementals - the textures are extremely bad, I managed to make a better replacement for magma elemental, but it suited only one size and looked even worse on others (looks like whoever made them, did it in way that shrinking the models messed up textures) and mainly these old creatures made by retexturing all are made from low-res textures which now in 2022 shows.


Elemental: Dust (L/M/S)
Elemental: Ice (not as bad, but it could look much better)
Elemental: Magma (extremely bad)
Elemental: Mineral (extremely bad)
Elemental: Ooze
Elemental: Salt (okay but could look better if high-res was used)
Elemental: Steam (I am getting epilepsy from this one, why should steam elemental blitter?)
Elemental: Vacuum
Elemental: Water

other than elementals, the probably worst creature appearance in whole CEP is Wendigo, althought I seen it being in use, this low quality reskin of werewolf with legs cut is just horrible.

Bugbear, Arctics also look quite bad, probably another case of lowres based retexture.
Goblin, Frosts are the same.
Ghoul, Ice doesn’t look icy at all.
Mechanons textures looks like made in MS Paint.

These just needs better textures, no need to replace model.

Also if you are doing this, perhaps you could also fix missing nodes. Some models doesn’t show weapons/shields when they could, some doesn’t show cast-anims or cones visual or show them off. Till now I found these:
Kuo Toa: added missing head dummy mode (which prevented some visuals like Howls to render)
fixed Skeleton, Yellow model to properly show weapons and shields
fixed Salamander, Average model to show cone-like visual effects properly

I can dig up the changed models if you want, but I think you know better than me so you will probably want to do it yourself.

I was actually looking at the elementals lately and noticed I knew the exact problem: Jax didn’t fix the texture scaling when they were rescaled. Ran into the problem with my Formians and others that I had to just manually fix

… interested in a dumb colab idea on that elemental theme outside of the scope of this thread but very relevant to improved elementals incidentally?

We checked nearly 2500 models. So it’s not possble to check any details such as cast anims or if equipment is visible. It’s just a matter of resources.

If it is for me, I would like to take any upgrade or fix into CEP. It’s a community project :slight_smile:

Yes, it’s pretty subjective. If other people like your post, we can bring the items you mention into scope.

To keep things simple, we’re listing all low quality models here as “in need of replacement”, but, in some of those cases, we’ve made a note behind the scenes that they could simply be repaired. This might indeed just be the texture, or an animation, or one limb, perhaps.

This could be automated I think, I don’t have tools or knowhow how to do it, but the cause of these issues are certain dummy models missing. In case of a salamander one of the cast anim dummy nodes had weird rotation too - I am not an expert, but I think dummy nodes shouldn’t have any rotation, so that could be also checked.

But basically, if we know that each model should have these dummy nodes, and they should have certain values, it should be fairly easy to make a mass search. Not sure if some tool already exists for that, I mean, to check the existence of the node or rather lack of it should be fairly easy to do, searching for specific values would be harder.

After the models are found, the fix is quite easy to do - I was able to do it myself as a noob in 3D modelling with NWgMax in few minutes.

Please accept, that we can’t dig deeper into that matter, our “manpower ressources” are rather limited.

As for the next release we are done with models (and this was not a small task so far), but that doesn’t mean that we won’t come back to the topic later.

For an analysis it would be nice to have some examples of your fixes, so that I might have a look on a possible systematical approach. And of course we would be happy to insert any fixed model into CEP in one of the next versions.

Sure no problem. I just assumed that you have tools that could do something like this given your work on tilesets. If not then it is obviously unrealistic to do it, too many models to check.

I’ve tools to look for things in textfiles, but without some samples I don’t know ehat to look for.

I actually started replacing creature models as practice a few years ago and some of them are on this list, mostly the humanoid ones. I usually try to use their original textures to keep the look. I have replaced most of Bleice except for the head, I was not really fond of the birdlike succubus and Erinyes so I completely remade those, but since I did not want to offend the original authors I kept my replacements to myself…

I will leave the data scanning to you guys. If you can point out the first 5 priority you want me to replace, I can take them on, and pass me another set when that is done.


Bleice wasn’t that bad at all (compared to some other models), except for the tail. But there is nothing which can’t be done better, I guess.

I would like to have a close look on the models on the picture.

Here is the model and texture of the Succubus base I made with my parts for you to test. It uses the High heel walk animation. I replaced all the CEP succubus’s and Erinyes with this base but I did give them different heads for variety.

sh_succubus.zip (927.5 KB)

here is another look at it…


Honestly I am also not sure what to look for as I am not expert on models. So I don’t have a list of all nodes that are required for spellcasting and the nodes that are required to show weapons/shields are not neccessary for all creatures - so mass search for this won’t be possible, one would have to compare that with values in appearance.2da column MODELTYPE.

Anyway, I tried to compile all my fixes to CEP content with details, here it is:
shadooow_fixes_to_CEP.zip (1.4 MB)

not that this doesn’t contain fixes from here: Shadooow's various Custom Content fixes and improvements | The Neverwinter Vault (mine cart specifically, fix for weapon sounds was added already afaik)