Guide: Using XCC Mixer


Table of Contents

Opening a MIX
The Hierarchic File Tree
The File Menu, Open or Ctrl-O
The File Menu, Found
Organizing the contents
Selecting a pal file
View Menu, Palet
View Menu, Palet, Auto
View Menu, Palet, Previous or Ctrl-[
View Menu, Palet, Next or Ctrl-]
Extracting the files
The MIX Files

Opening a MIX

There are three main ways to open MIX files with this program. Each of them has certain benefits, I tend to use all three depending on what I am opening. With the ways below, you can click from file to file, opening one MIX after another. This is very useful when searching for that special shp or aud. Please note that when opening a MIX for the first time, there is a time lag (sometimes up to 30 seconds) while the program searches for and finds all of the MIX files for the command and conquer games you have installed. Here are some ways:

The Hierarchic File Tree

This is the drop down listing of all the files in the current directory. The are listed drives first, then .. to take you to the next higher directory, then the folders and files that are available where you are. The MIXer can view text files and MIX files in this way, it will show the contents in the right window. To open a MIX file, just double click on it to open it. You will note that the file listing changes to that of the current MIX file. You can then view the files in the right window. To exit the MIX file, just select File, Close, or Ctrl-C. This is method of open files I use the most. I like the easy sifting of the files. I also like to see what else is in each directory.

The File Menu, Open or Ctrl-O

This is the normal way to open a MIX. It is the same as any other program. Sort through the menus and find the file you want. Select it, and either hit the Open button or double click it. The only problem with this method is that you cannot see the contents of each MIX file before you open them.

The File Menu, Found

This is the most direct way to open a MIX file. From the Found option, a drop-down menu will open with a listing of each Command and Conquer game you have installed. If you then select one of them, a new drop-down menu appears with a listing of the MIX files in the directories. This is far and away the easiest way to open any of the normal MIX files. I would probably use this more I could remember it existed. It saves a lot of time when switching back and forth from RA and TS MIX files.

Organizing the contents

It is easy to organize the list of files in the file tree. Just click once on Type heading at the top of the left window. This will group the files listed by type, MIX files together, pal files together, etc. This makes it easier to find those more obscure shp files. Like the weed infantryman. Note that the named files are grouped after the numbered ones.

Selecting a pal file

When viewing the shp files (click on the name in the left window and it will be displayed in the right) it is important to have the correct palette file. Most of the time, the program will try to find the correct pal file automatically, but it does not always find the right one. There are several ways to select a new pal for display. They are:

View Menu, Palet

This shows a drop-down menu of Tiberium Dawn, Red Alert, Tiberian Sun, Auto, Previous, Next. The first three show a drop-down menu of the pal files detected in their respective directories. You can manually select the pal to use if you wish. This is handy when trying to determine which one you need to extract to use with the shp2bmp program, but more on that later.

View Menu, Palet, Auto

This tells program to auto-detect the pal files. I always leave this set. It saves time, since the program can often find the right pal right away.

View Menu, Palet, Previous or Ctrl-[

This moves one palette back on the list. This is handy when viewing multiple shp files. It is easy to simply click through the available pal files to find the right one.

View Menu, Palet, Next or Ctrl-]

This moves one palette forward on the list. This is handy when viewing multiple shp files. It is easy to simply click through the available pal files to find the right one.

Extracting the files

Extracting files with XCC MIXer is easy. Once you have found something you wish to extract, right-click on its name in the left window. A drop-down menu will appear. Select extract and a save file dialog box will open. Remember to add the correct extension to it when saving it. It may not extract properly if you do not. In other words, when typing in the file name, use the whole name, ie: titan.shp unitsnow.pal deadguy6.aud You can also extract aud files to wav, and shp files to pcx. When you right-click on the name of the aud or shp file you wish to extract, the "to wav" and "to pcx" options will become available. This will save you some trouble later. Windows does odd things with files with no extension some time. Any and all files in the MIX files can be extracted, from MIX files to shp files.

The MIX Files

The MIX files are the backbone on any editing. They contain all the goodies. The XCC MIX Editor is unique in that it actually decodes the MIX file instead of hacking it with offset values. This is what allows you to view and extract all the files in he MIXes, even the unknown ones. This is also very important for mod makers, since this allows us to have the proper format for all the files. The program works with all of the MIX files used by Westwood at this time. However, I am only going to talk about the inner workings of the Tiberian Sun files. Since this is the newest game, and other resources are available with information on TD and RA.
TibsunThis is the main MIX file for TS. It contains 16 MIX files and thousands of other files. This is the file you will be looking in for most of what you need.
CacheThis file has a few shp files, but mostly it is fnt and pal files. Most of the pal file you need can be found here.
ConquerThis MIX has most of icons, infantry, and basic (non-voxel) vehicle shp files. It is a large file, and one of the most important to mod makers.
IsosnowThis contains the tiles for the snow and taiga terrain set.
IsotempThis contains the tiles for the temperate and desert terrain set.
LocalThis huge MIX file contains most of the pcx artwork, the INI files, the voxels and the hva files.
Side01This has the side specific artwork and icons for GDI.
Side02This has the side specific artwork and icons for Nod.
Sidenc01This has the side specific artwork for the campaigns for GDI.
Sidenc02This has the side specific artwork for the campaigns for Nod.
SnoThis has ammocrates and wake animation for snow maps.
SnowThis has the building and building animations for the snow maps.
SoundsPretty self explanatory. All of the unit sounds from TS.
Speech01Eva voices.
Speech02Cabal voices.
TemThis has ammocrates and wake animation for temperate maps.
TemperatThis has the building and building animations for the temperate maps
ScoresContains music files for TS.
GmenuThis has the artwork and INI files for the new menu.
Maps01GDI mission maps
Maps02Nod mission maps.
Movies01GDI VQA movies (cutscenes).
Movies02Nod VQA movies (cutscenes).
MultiThis contains the multiplayer maps in TS.
SideCD01This has the side specific artwork for the campaign map selection for GDI.
SideCD02This has the side specific artwork for the campaign map selection for Nod.
Expand01The main firestorm MIX file. It contains most of the pcx artwork, the INI files, the voxels and the hva files.
Ecache01Contains special unit and animation files for FS.
E01sCD01Side specific score and map selection pal for GDI.
E01sCD02Side specific score and map selection pal for Nod.
Maps03The firestorm campaign maps.
Scores01The music for firestorm.
WDTWorld Domination Tour artwork.
WDTVoxWorld Domination Tour voices.


FAQ

Q: In the Name column I only see 8-character IDs instead of names. What's wrong?
A: The data directory is probably set wrong. To fix this, start XCC AV Player. Click on the "Set directories..." button and enter the directory where you've installed XCC Mixer into the field "Data directory".

Q: When I try to convert a PCX file to SHP, it doesn't work. What should I do?
A: You need to make sure the PCX file is 8-bit and that the filename ends with " 000", that's a space with three zeros.