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TMP

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TMPs or template files are terrain files used in Tiberian Sun through Yuri's Revenge. They constitute the solid, mostly indestructible terrain upon which every other game object is layered.

TMP files use the same theater-specific file extensions as TerrainTypes: .tem, .sno, etc.

Tiles

Each TMP file holds one terrain piece called tile. Tiles come in various shapes, each comprised of one or more cells1.

Each tile cell has a normal image that covers the cell shape, plus an optional "extra" image perpendicular to the normal image. This extra image is essential for creating the illusion of a 3D-environment, as it allows for hiding terrain and objects behind it, thus creating a sense of depth, or the filling of space between cells at different height levels.

In addition to graphics, each tile cell has several parameters encoded that specify characteristics such as height, land type and slope type.

Furthermore, tiles are divided into tile sets, which define certain attributes that each tile in the set should have.

The maximum tile size is 10x10 cells.

File Format

A TMP file consists of two header parts, the file header and tile cell headers.

struct FileHeader
{
	unsigned int BlockWidth; // size in blocks
	unsigned int BlockHeight;
	unsigned int BlockImageWidth; // size of each block
	unsigned int BlockImageHeight;
};

Following the file header is an index of pointers to each tile cell header.

struct TileCellHeader
{
	signed int X; // tile cell offset
	signed int Y;
	unsigned int ExtraDataOffset;
	unsigned int ZDataoffset;
	unsigned int ExtraZDataoffset;
	signed int ExtraX; // extra image offset
	signed int ExtraY;
	unsigned int ExtraWidth;
	unsigned int ExtraHeight;
	unsigned char Bitfield;
	BYTE padding[3];
	unsigned char Height;
	unsigned char LandType;
	unsigned char SlopeType;
	RGB TopLeftRadarColor;
	RGB BottomRightRadarColor;
	BYTE padding2[3];
};
struct RGB 
{ 
 	unsigned char Red; 
 	unsigned char Green; 
 	unsigned char Blue; 
};

Explanation

  • Block is the size of a tile cell canvas. Its size is in practice fixed in each game: 48x24 pixels for TS and 60x30 pixels for RA2.
  • Z-Data contains the information for layering the graphics.
  • Bitfield - The 3 least significant bits out of the 8 bits are used as boolean (0/1) flags for three tile cell attributes: HasExtraData (least significant), HasZData, and HasDamagedData respectively. The game checks these bits to process the extra-data or z-data or the damaged logic. If HasExtraData/HasZData bits are set to 0, the game won't use its respective extra-data or z-data even if present. If the HasDamagedData bit is set to 0, the game randomly picks the tile cell from one of the TMP variant files, if present. These variants are identified by a single character suffix (from A to G) at the end of the filename, e.g. clear01.tem, clear01a.tem, clear01b.tem etc. HasDamagedData bit is set to 1 for bridges, so that the bridge tiles are not randomized. The remaining leading 5 bits out of the 8 bits are not used irrespective of the values present in those. For example, a byte value of 0xCB or 0x03 or 0x83 or 0x4B, all have the same result of binary xxxxx011 which means HasDamagedData bit is not set, HasZData bit is set and HasExtraData bit is set.
  • LandType2 - Numbering used for land characteristics. 0, 1 or 13 is used for Clear. Ice uses 0 to 4. Tunnel is 5. Railroad is 6. Rock uses 7 or 8 (15 is also used as rock in cliff tiles). Water is 9. Beach is 10. Road uses 11 or 12. Rough is 14. Cliff is 15. Wall, Tiberium and Weeds don't have numbers but are processed based on their overlay placed on the cells.
  • Radar colors - The top-left radar color and bottom-right radar color being different, enhances the demarcation in the minimap where the adjacent tiles/terrain change in the map. These also give a sense of the light source being at top-left in the minimap. Compare to the unused LowRadarColor and HighRadarColor.
  • Padding bytes are used as fillers, could have any value, typically assigned with 0xCD in original game files.

The actual tile and extra graphics are encoded after the tile cell header.

For older documentation reference, see TMP documentation.

See Also

Footnotes

1 Confusingly, these cells sometimes referred to as "tiles". This is especially true in Tiberian Dawn and Red Alert, where a tileset refers to what tile does here (a collection of cells).

1 Sometimes referred to as terrain type (not to be confused with TerrainTypes)