[Guide][1.24+] Create Alpha Channel for ETS2/ATS Paintjob

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[Guide][1.24+] Create Alpha Channel for ETS2/ATS Paintjob

Postby Eagle_Eye » Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:11 pm

Create Alpha Channel for ETS2/ATS Metallic Paintjob


This is NOT a tutorial on building your skin.

This tutorial takes over after you have built your skin and decided that you want to use a metallic finish for areas that you don't want as a fixed graphic.

To do this, you need to have an Alpha Channel to mask off the areas that you don't want to be altered by the metallic paint.

The steps are very easy, it only takes a few seconds to create your Alpha once you know how.

I learned this trick on my own over years of creating textures and modding other games.

Other games use the Alpha channel to create depth in the texture.

Below are the tools you will need, after that, is the tutorial, I hope I've written it so it can be followed easily..

Below is a picture of the result of a mask, all the black areas are fixed.

Coloured areas can also be masked. (see next post for colour mask)

You can also see the finished skin on my youtube... Click on the youtube within the video to open youtube in your browser.

Metallic paint colours can be changed.


For this tutorial I am using photoshop.

You will need your own copy.

You must install the tools from nVidia to be able to save and read dds files, the link is below.

https://developer.nvidia.com/nvidia-tex ... -photoshop

To create your skin you need ETS2Studio, link below.


As a text editor for later use editing game files, I suggest this free notepad++ tool, link below.


Here's what you get opening an sii file using notepad.....

Opening the same file, here's what you see using notepad++

Big Difference hey !!

If you make notepad++ your default tool for reading sii files, your files will always open with notepad++, even from winzip or whatever compression program you use..


There may be better ways of doing things, this way works for me and is quick and effective.

If it doesn't work for you, then I guess it's tough luck lol.

I take no responsibility if things go wrong.


Can't name everyone I have learned from.

Thanks to the guy who made the Beamish Skin for the 50K DAF.

I learned a lot from looking at your sii files and dds file.

Building your Alpha Channel

01 Open your skin in PS. I have a skin I made with set colours, I decided it would be better to set the main graphic (all the fancy stripe work) and let the main colour be a variable metallic.

You don't have to have all your graphics on the same layer, all visible layers will be transferred to the Alpha.

Turn off any layers that are not needed, just leave the layers you want masked, visible.

Make sure whats left is on a transparent background. I start all skins on a transparent background with image size as 4096 x 4096 pixels.

02 Done, easy step.. I want these areas masked.

03 Look over to the right and click on the Channels icon. It now shows the four colour Channels.

04 Click on the buttons next to the RGB, Red and Green Channels to turn them off.

05 Right Click on the Blue Channel and "Duplicate" Channel.

06 You will see this popup.

07 Change the name to Alpha, tick invert, and Click ok.

08 You have created a reverse of the blue Channel, which is an exact inverted copy. Whatever is black will be replaced by the colours you choose when you create your metallic skin.

09 Click on all 4 normal colour Channels and turn them back on.

10 Click on the Alpha button and turn it off.

11 Go back to the layers by clicking the layer icon.

12 Now save your work, over your old one... because you already have a backup right!

13 Now "Save As", pull down the format, and select the DDS.

14 Type in a name if it doesn't come up with one and "Save"

15 You will get this pop up...

16 If you haven't already set DTX5 interpolated alpha, then do so now...
Cadde wrote:Of course, DXT 5 is NOT a requirement for this operation to work. ARGB 32 Bit Unsigned works too! You don't get compression artifacts this way AND the alpha channel suffers especially in DXT * formats.

17 Click on "Save"

Your all done, your DDS file with an Alpha Channel (Mask) is ready to use in ETS2 Studio.

You can use same method for ETS2 and ATS.


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