@scole, Thank you for the explanation!
The specified workflow from Relic’s own documentation is very useful. It is a pity that it was not provided in the RDN-package. In general, is it possible to publish Relic’s original tools for Homeworld2, as it is done for first Homeworld? Without support, “as is” – only the tools and documentation already available to them (I understand that you have enough work, and express my thanks for your answers and help even in off-duty time). HW2 stuff more than ten years and today it’s unlikely to contain any know-how, the publication of which can inflict harm to the company.
I know that there are different modder tools for creating custom backgrounds, but they create too heavy files (10, 20 and even 40 Mb). Frankly, I didn’t come across a tool that is able to convert, for example, Tanis background (2048x1024 32bit-texture) to ~200Kb hod-file with maintaining a similar clarity and accuracy (source is left, result is right):
A few years ago I also tried different vectorization tools – VectorMagic and another one (I can’t remember its name), that successfully convert bitmaps into svg-files (doesn’t say what would the appropriate format, but at least it’s possible to write a converter if the result was acceptable). But these tools poorly maintain sharp color transitions, and if I specify reasonable number of vertices, the result became too blurry.
Now, thanks to your tip, this problem seems can be solved! I downloaded the library you specified; also I found description of the algorithm, which shows results of its work. Most impressive is figures 7-9 – they clearly indicates that this is exactly what I was looking for. Also, this algorithm can be useful for automatic LOD generation. Thanks!
Sources for the HW2 BTG tool aren’t available, but for HW1 they are published in the source code package. It seems that I can represent all the bitmap dots as the vertices, unite them into triangles and give to input of this algorithm, get as result a optimized mesh and work with it. And there are modder tool, that can transform HW1-backgrounds to HW2 – but first of all I would like to get some kind of background’s vectorizer for first Homeworld.