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  • Please read the text file included with most PPM's (and files for that matter) before contacting the authors. Many times, troubleshooting is addressed in those files. Also, they may give website addresses that can point you in the right direction to solving your problems...
  • Okay, so you downloaded the latest PPM and it's not showing up. There are a few simple things you can check out before you fire off the e-mails to the author of the PPM or hit the messageboards.
  • If your PPM isn't showing up at all in the Multiplayer Selection Screen, then the most likely solution is to make sure there no files, except subdirectories in the baseq2/players folder. If there is even a hidden file in this directory, it can cause this error. So make sure the baseq2/players directory is clear of all files except the directories for the PPM's themselves.
  • If this does not work, then the first step in troubleshooting is to rename the male marine to something else, and rename the troubled PPM to male. See if you even see the model, since the male model should always work.
  • If it's not coming up now, check to make sure that the skins have a corresponding icon file. For example, if a skin is named "waste.pcx" it must have a file that corresponds with it called "waste_i.pcx" If this file isn't there, create one. Q2 needs this file so that it can register the skin (and consequently the model).
  • After this, if it's still not showing up, there is most likely an error with the model, check with the site you got it from for info. Read the Text file included with the downloaded file!
  • Perhaps you are getting a NULL SKIN ERROR or similar message. This is a pretty common error. What it basically is telling you is that it doesn't understand what skin or where the skin is that goes on the model, so Q2 doesn't know what to do. This is a linking problem most likely. It is easily fixed, provided you have the tools. The best tool to correct this error is Npherno's Skin Tool (NST). This is a great program and easy to use, so don't worry. Load up NST and open the model that is giving you the error. It will ask if you want to load in some skins. Just say no. You wont see anything in the windows, and the palette will be a grayscale. This is normal. The model is there, you just can't see it yet. Go to the menu marked skins, and select open (or Shift+O). Find the skin that corresponds to the model. When you open it, the Q2 palette should replace the gray scale palette, and the model should be in the window along with the skin.
  • Now open skins menu again, and select link (Shift+L). The skin is now linked to the file. Save the model out (remember to back up the original, just in case) and try running Q2 again. If it is still giving you the problem, do the same thing again, except unlink (Ctrl+L) the skin this time, and resave the model.
  • This should fix it, and this has worked (sometimes linking, and sometimes unlinking) on various machines with different people I have talked to.
  • This should help you out, and this does cover the most common errors mentioned. I can't stress enough about reading the text files included with the models, as well as researching modeling sites on the web before emailing authors comments like "your PPM doesn't show up, help!" If you have tried to find answers on the web, and still can't figure it out, at least type up an intelligent letter that explains the circumstances of the error, and not the one liner ambiguous help. I usually respond with as much info as a get, so the less you give to work with, the less you'll get back.

Stecki is a pro artist who runs a very nice personal web page, Deconstruct.

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