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Franklin skin modding question


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Before I get started, let me summarize what I think I know about the game files.  Please correct me if I'm wrong:

  • .ydd:  The drawable dictionary file.  As far as I know, it contains the mesh for the appropriate body part and references the different textures.  For streamed peds, it also contains XXXX_###_spec (materials) and XXXX_###_normal (details like ridges and folds to make it more realistic).  An 'X' represents a char, and a '#' represents a number (i.e. lowr_000_spec or head_001_normal)
  • .ytd:  The texture dictionary file.  Contains the actual textures and colors of the corresponding body part/parts.  For non-streamed peds, this file (not the .ydd) contains the XXXX_###_spec and XXXX_###_normal files mentioned above
  • .yft:  OpenIV calls it a 'fragment object'.  It appears to contain the skeleton of the ped.
  • .ymt:  Metadata file.  I think it contains a list of all .ydd files for the pedso the game knows what to look for and where to find them.  I do not think OpenIV is able to open them, and even though one option when right clicking a .ymt file is to export as a .xml file, it still only exports it as a .ymt.  I haven't been able to edit one yet.


There are a few files I am not familiar with, and I am not certain if they are important:

  • .yld:  The cloth dictionary.  I've only seen them for Michael, Franklin, and Trevor.
  • .ydr:  A drawable object.  I have only seen them for freemode male and female.


So far, I have been able to create quasi-new skins for characters (especially freemode characters) by changing the texture files and the XXXX_###_spec files.  I have not done any mesh modifications because I haven't been able to get GIMS to cooperate with 3ds Max yet.


Now that I've summarized what I know about skin modding, let me discuss what I would like to do now - I would like to replace Franklin's skin with another.  I have tried (and succeeded) changing the skin using Skin Control, and I have even been able to play story missions with the new skin by changing the model hash using Character Swap.  There a few problems with this method, however:

  • There is something fishy with an accessory that I do not wish to equip.  If I try to change it, it stays put, and Franklin takes off a parachute (???).
  • The biggest thing is that as soon as I switch the skin using Skin Control, I no longer have access to Franklin's special ability (even if I use Character Swap).


Because of this, I wanted to change Franklin's skin to the one I like to use; however, the model I am using is shorter than Franklin.  Needless to say, this is causing some issues, liked a warped, jumpy body and a bunch of spikes everywhere.  To try and fix this, I tried copying the .yft from the model I used to the streamedpeds_players folder, but it doesn't make a difference.  Does anybody know how to fix this without modifying any meshes?  (I did change the appropriate files in the dlcpacks, too.)

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