Introducing the IQM model format

We are adding support for this format!


As of this coming release, we’ll be adding in the IQM format. This is the Inter-Quake Model format by Lee Salzman, and it offers us several advantages over the aging MD5 format that we’ve been using for all of our new models. Of course, while MD5 itself is superior to MD3, namely by allowing for skeletal animation, it is very old and is not particularly well-supported by most 3D modeling programs, which gives us severe migraines every time we try to export things. In contrast, we get the following from IQM:

  • Better exporter support in programs like Blender, Max and Maya.
  • New features for animators like bone scaling.
  • Improved maintenance of the format, considering it’s still developed.

Models may or may not appear to look better with the IQM format, as it is something that remains to be seen once we export all of our existing material to it. As you can see from the article shot, the new reactor model we added this summer will certainly look better, considering that MD5 averages out normals and results in particularly bad shading, something that doesn’t look good on hard surface models. IQM supports vertex normals and will not suffer from this. Of course, it will take some time for us to export everything and make sure it looks right in-game, but the support is now there in our engine. You can expect our new models in successive releases to take advantage of the format.