RF ONLINE SERVER SIDE GUIDE (Basic editing of .eff files )

I've been requested to repost a few guides from RF-Dev here, so here you go.
This was originally posted by Night from RF-Dev. I take no credits for anything on RF-Dev I did not create myself.
This tutorial will show you how to edit an items .eff file, which controls how the item will interact with the alpha layer (if it has one). This is particularly useful for changing the glows on level 55 and 60 armors, or to change the color of glows for each type of armor for a race (ie; purple force glow, blue melee glow, red ranger glow.
First step, identify the .eff that controls the armor you wish to edit. An easy example is inside the Chef\eff\60LV_WHITE folder, you will find all the 60 armor's set ups. The names of each make it pretty clear which piece is which, and the suffix number shows which set it belongs to (013 is melee, 014 is ranger, 015 is force/launcher). The easiest thing to is to find a piece of any armor that already has the effect to use as a comparison, though later on you will find which hexes control what property, and will be able to edit the effects without a piece to compare to. The best example is the lvl 60 ranged and melee gloves, they already have scrolling effects. We will apply this same effect to all the other pieces of the set, instead of the original effect, which is a bright sheen that looks transparent (and is rather ugly). First, make a copy of your entire folder your working on. You always need back up originals, in case something goes wrong. Now, open your Hex editor (doesnt matter which kind of Hex editor you use, use whatever is comfortable for you, but I use HexEdit), and open your BELMALE_ARMOR_GLOVES_013.EFF file.

Once it is open, find and open BELMALE_ARMOR_HELMET_013.EFF file.

Now, by comparison, you can quite obviously see a few marked differences. It looks a bit different on the gloves hex because the first and third regions of hex control the environmental glow, which is the shine or reflection you can see off the gloves (You can try some tinkering with this later, if I have time I will edit a tutorial on how to give other armor pieces the same environmental glow as the gloves into this post).

What we want from the gloves hex however, is inside the brackets.

Here, we can see that it uses STAFF_BB.dds, instead of the recall02_B.dds that the helmet uses. What we want to do is replace the recall02_B.dds from the helmet with the STAFF_BB.dds from the gloves. Just type into the hexes as shown to do that (Recall's name is longer than staff's, so change the remaining "20 53" at the end to "00 00").

Now that the raw .dds file that the armor uses has been edited, we need to edit how the effect interacts with the armor. In its current form, it is static, it does not move. From here, we just compare our two hexes again, and pick out the difference.

You should now end up with this :

Now, here we get a little in depth. In that picture above, the second @ or "40" controls the movement speed. 41 is twice the speed of 40, 42 is twice the speed of 41. At 42, it becomes extremely rapid and makes an unpleasant epileptic effect, and 41 is borderlining on annoying. If you set it to 39 however, it simply stops moving at all, leading me to believe 40 is the base value. I would love to have slowed the movement down, but as of yet, I dont know how =/. Another hex to take a look at is the fourth "01" on the line below all this. This controls the type of movement it uses. Ive listed the different effects Ive found so far below.
0 = no movement
1 = cycle of vertical and horizontal distortions, can look good, depending on the .dds used
2 = scrolling effect
3 = cycle of vertical and horizontal distortions, same as 1
4 = Strange metallic sheen over entire armor, regardless of where alpha is on the armor texture (doesnt look quite right)
5+ = no movement
This concludes the basic editing of .eff files tutorial. With some practice, you can make some really wonderful things with this techinique, but it is confusing to beginners, so if your new, I recommend first reading through my entire [URL="http://rf-dev.com/showthread.php?t=19"]basic graphic editing tutorial[/URL]. The default bellato set up has a layer of semi-transparent alpha covering the armor, for this, you will want to delete that, and edit the alpha in correspondance with pieces of trim on the armor texture. In that tutorial, you will learn how to edit textures in the most basic of ways, but you will need that knowledge if you want to edit where the alpha shows on the armor. To edit alpha, select channels near your layers menu, and select the alpha channel. There is only two colors in that channel, black and white. Black is the what will show up in game as alpha. If you choose to edit the alpha layer, you need to click the eye next to your RGB channels so that all four channels will display at once. In that view, the alpha appears transparent pink. Use a brush or pen + stroke method to add alpha to areas corresponding with the armor. Once finished, save in your standard DXT5 format, and test things in game. Here is a video of some work I did on the bellato textures, and if you do some practice and learn to understand how this works, you can make things like this as well.
Edit: I accidently deleted my other videos of that, the only one I had left was a test with an edited to red from blue Ave_b.dds I did that I ended up scrapping, it looks much better with an Ave_b.dds that is blue, but I'm not gonna bother with getting a new video of the blue version of that til later tomorrow.
Special thanks to the guys here that first gave me the help I needed to learn how to do this. These techniques are in no way originally mine, I am only writing a tutorial for them.


  1. WOW just what I was looking for. Came here by searching for momma's

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  2. nice tutorial, can you please re upload the pictures they are mno longer working . thanks


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