Legacy:Unreal Modeling FAQ

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A list of questions asked by both new modelers, and experienced modelers. At the moment, we don't have any questions because none has been asked. Use the Quick Navigation link at the top to quickly jump to a question.

Feel free to post questions here in comment form. They will be refactored after.

General Questions

What is modeling? 
Modeling is the art of creating objects in 3D using vertices and polygons or NURBS. Creating a model or mesh involves using vertices (like points on a graph) and faces (like the picture you get when you connect the dots. Unreal modeling deals strictly with vertices and polygons however. In Unreal modeling, a modeler can choose to do three different types of modeling, Player Modeling, Weapon Modeling, and Static Mesh Modeling. Each path has it's own techniques as well as challenges. Modeling is closely related to Skinning, and Animation. In the production line of a model, it is first created using any of the listed programs, then it is usually skinned, meaning a picture is applied to it's surface, then it is animated, which means it can be made to move and perform actions. Refer to the Skinning and Animating FAQs for further info on those subjects.
What is a mesh?
A mesh is a collection of vertices and faces connected together to create a mesh like object. Look at a metal fence. There are holes in that fence and points where the wires intersect. That is an example of a mesh in the real world. A mesh in modeling looks quite similar except that you can actually see the points where the wire intersects.

Other questions

What file formats can UnrealEd import? 
UnrealEd can import 3D Studio Max ASE files, and LightWave LWO files. Maya Complete/Unlimited can also generate ASE files with ActorX, but that exporter does not have support for multiple texture coordinate sets. You can also move models directly from Maya PLE to UnrealEd through the unEditor.mll plugin. (see also Importing Models from Maya)
How do I make fancy static meshes like the ones used in CTF-Magma?
See CTF-Magma for some info on how that map is constructed.
How do I add an ammo count actually onto my weapon as seen on the rocket launcher and minigun in UT? 
This is a rather involved process that includes assigning a different texture to the number area before you export it and a lot of scripting in UnrealScript to make it actually work.
What is the best way to set up a CVS system for a total conversion with multiple mappers/modelers? That is, how is the problem of multiple modelers needing to update/access a package resolved? And how does that interface with the mappers? 
Modelers should check in individual model source files – you should create a script which uses the BatchImportCommandlet to automatically create a package file from the individual source files. For maps and other binary files, make sure to use the "-kb" option when initially checking them in to tell CVS that it's dealing with a binary file (and doesn't attempt to merge different versions).
I have a custom package created for UT2003 but am unable to load it correctly. I have gone over all the items in the package and they are correct, how do I get the package applied correctly to run in UT2003? 
Check UT2004.log for error messages.