Custom models

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In Pikmin 2, the model files are .BMD and usually come with a .BTK. These files can easily be viewed using J3DModelViewer or any other Nintendo 3D model viewer. The collision for the models isn't generated straight from the models, however. The collision files must be generated separately, these files include grid.bin and mapcode.bin.

The following is a mostly complete guide.



First you'll need the appropriate tools in order to create your custom models. For the model:

  • ArcExtract/Pack (and yaz0fast if you want smaller ARC files)
  • BMDCubed[1]
  • 3ds Max 2015[2] (other versions may work, however BMDCubed was created for the 2015 edition which can still be officially downloaded; register as a student for a free licence)
  • J3DModelViewer[3] (other model viewers will not display anything or crash when you try to load your custom model)

For the collision:

  • ArcExtract/Pack (and yaz0fast if you want smaller ARC files)
  • obj2grid[4]
  • Python 3.3[5]
  • 3D modelling program that can export .OBJ (3ds Max is fine, no need for multiple programs)[6]


  1. Extract the area model from the arc.szs using ArcExtract (located in tutorial, forest, yakushima or last - ignore anything in zukan). Make sure that you keep the .BTK and delete the .BMD, remembering the name (model.bmd).
  2. Open up 3ds Max and create/import your model.
  3. Once you're satisfied with your model, you want to add textures. Make sure your texture's dimensions are to the power of 2 (64x64 works). Keep in mind that the textures you use will affect file size, anything around six megabytes or more will probably crash.
  4. Add editable poly to your model once you have attached all parts together, select the vertex option, select ALL points (Cntrl+A) and click the connect button to triangulate the faces.
  5. Now we want to make sure that our pivot is centred, and so is the model. After you've done that, you will want to export your model as .OBJ (title it something simple like modelcol.obj) and export to wherever is easiest, it'll create multiple files but all we care about is the .OBJ.
  6. Now back to 3ds Max, click the rotate tool (or right-click your model and click rotate). In the top-right, set your view to right (click and drag to change your view, and click the face on the cube that says 'RIGHT') and then you want to rotate the object -90 degrees on the x-axis. Then go to the utilities tab on the right, click X-form, and then 'x-form selected'. Go ahead and export the model again as a .DAE file and simply title it model.dae.
  7. To create your BMD model, open the BMDCubed folder and there will be a .exe, if you did everything right; a simple drag and drop of your .DAE file should export a .BMD (model.bmd) in the same location as the .DAE. Now to quickly check your model to make sure everything worked, open up J3DModelViewer, and drag your .BMD file right onto the preview. Hold right-click and WASD to move around, if it looks good then you can just close J3D. To import your model, go back to an area folder or wherever in your Pikmin 2 files, find the arc folder and put back the model.bmd file.
  8. To create the collision of your model, you'll need to download; a python script written by Yoshi2 which converts a .OBJ into grid.bin and mapcode.bin files which are necessary for custom area map collision. You'll also need to install Python 3.3 and to make things easy, just drop into your Python33 folder in your C drive.
  9. Drop your modelcol.obj file into the Python33 folder as well, right-click inside the folder while holding shift and click 'run command window in this folder', command prompt should open up. Now all you need to type is python modelcol.obj and then you wait for it to generate the files. During this process, avoid clicking in the black abyss of command prompt otherwise the process will just stop and you won't even realise it.
  10. Repeat what you did for the model (replace the grid.bin and mapcode.bin files in the texts folder) IF your grid.bin file does NOT exceed about 1,300KB. The largest official in-game grid.bin is only 650kb, however as I've tested around 1,300 still works, any higher will crash the game. Using yaz0enc/yaz0fast will make the ARC smaller but it will not stop the game from crashing if the original grid file is too big.
  11. Use ArcPack to create your arc.arc and texts.arc files, use yaz0fast to make them smaller if you desire and then just rename the extension to .szs as opposed to .arc (or .arc.yaz0 if you compressed it). Now run GC-Rebuilder to rebuild your ISO and run it!