There are a few ways to get the in-game model. I generally search for XNALara models on DevianArt. I have also extracted the in game models for PC games that use the Unreal game engine by using the Unreal Engine Viewer.

The image to the left is Garron Paduk from Gears of War: Judgment in the XNALara XPS.

You can use XNALara to look at the character from all angles, and even post them using the controls in the program window.

We'll just use it to export a .obj file of the model.

Garron Paduk Model in XNALara

I use Autodesk 3D Studio Max since I already own the software from back when I did 3D modeling for a living. There are other shareware 3D packages available that will do all we need to do, which is delete everything until we have just the element we want to work on. For instance, just the boot, or just the chest armor.

Once you've got the piece of armor isolated, you can export it as a .obj file.

Garron Paduk Model inported into 3DS Max
You'll now open the armor piece in Pepakura Designer. When you import the model, it will not have it's texture map. You'll need to find the .tga texture map file from the XNALara model & save it as a .jpg file.

Boot imported into Pepakura Designer

You'll apply the texture map by going to the top menu dropdown: Settings > Texture Settings...

Choose the Specify Texture Image... button, navigate to the .jpg of the texture map & click Open.

Add Texture Map

You can now unwrap the model by choosing Others > Unfold from the top menu. The unwrapped model will be a MESS!

You can use the Divide/Connect Face tool (it looks like a zipper) to start sorting out your model into usable pieces.

Initial Unwrap

After a bit of work, you'll have the boot separated into all the useable pieces.

As you can see, there are some issues:

  • The leather pad behind the kneepad that I had to make up later.
  • The ankle strap is divided into three pieces.
  • The heel and kneepad also look like they have some slices cut out of them.

Boot separated into pieces

This is where I take the models into Adobe Photoshop to start to break the pieces into what will be the final shapes. In this image, the heel will still need some work to break the two straps apart & get them to the right angle.

Of course, if you don't have Adobe Photoshop, you can always do this part by hand. Just print out the page above & trace over the pieces.

Final Template Pieces

I use Adobe Illustrator to trace all the pieces, scale it to fit me, and print the templates onto 8.5x11 paper.

Boot piece after edge warping in Adobe Photoshop
Here is my posterboard mockup of the boot. Sizing looks good, but I hadn't added the top kneepad strap on this model yet.

Poster Board test of boot templates
In this side view test, I don't have the kneepad backing applied yet. This causes the kneepad to tilt back in the test. Good enough! I moved on to cutting the EVA foam.

Poster Board test of boot templates
Here are all the pieces of EVA foam ready for assembly. You can see alignment notches along some edges. These are to either mark the centerline of a part (like the heels), or where panel lines are located (like the side of the boot).

Boot Pieces ready for assembly

More Patterning Photos and Information

One of the biggest problems with going from the 3D printout to the 2D pattern pieces is accounting for the areas that are curved in the original model.

You can see one such spot on the bottom inlay for Bermie Mataki's shoulder pauldron. The wedges left from flattening the model make the bottom edge of the inlay too wide. To account for this, Robin narrowed the bottom edge of the pattern slightly when she traced the pattern onto card stock.

Then when was able to add the rounding to the picece by stretching the EVA as she heated/formed the pieces.

Bernie Mataki's shoulder pauldron fabrication

Boot Pieces ready for assembly
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