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Technologx

[Wii + vWii] How to create a Homebrew Channel Theme

8 posts in this topic

Technologx    32

As of 1.0.7, The Homebrew Channel is capable of theming. The images and fonts are stored in a theme.zip, which can be executed like a boot.dol from the Homebrew Channel.

For a theme database and a "How to install" guide, check

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Further details on this can be found at

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Fonts


As for 1.1.0, you can use your own TrueType or OpenType fonts with The Homebrew Channel. You can assign a font, size, and color to individual GUI elements:

ScreenShot2014-11-09at125735PM_zps38808f

 

Each font can be specified using a <font> element inside the theme.xml file. You can specify the file, size, and color like this:

<font target="memo,dlgtitle">
<file>foo.ttf</file>
<size>16</size>
<color><red>0</red><green>0</green><blue>0</blue><alpha>255</alpha></color>
</font>

As you can see, each <font> element can be assigned to one or multiple targets, separated by commas. There can also be a single <font> element with no target attribute that overrides the defaults for the entire theme. The rule is that for each font, each parameter (size, color, font name) gets individually looked up first in a <font> element with the specific target; if it doesn't exist or doesn't have that parameter, it gets looked up in the base <font> element, and if that doesn't exist or doesn't have that parameter, the default is used. You should no longer use the old <font_color> element (though it is still supported for backwards compatibility).

As an example, the following theme.xml (combined with the appropriate TTF files) sets up the fonts exactly the same way as they are by default, but without actually falling back to the defaults:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" standalone="yes"?>
<theme version="1">
<description>Droid Sans font</description>
<font>
<file>DroidSans-Bold.ttf</file>
<size>16</size>
</font>
<font target="button,dlgtitle,appname">
<size>20</size>
</font>
<font target="memo">
<file>DroidSans.ttf</file>
<size>16</size>
</font>
<font target="button_desel">
<file>DroidSans.ttf</file>
<size>20</size>
</font>
</theme>

Additionally, you can specify that the theme supports certain CKJ languages in its fonts, to enable those translations (though currently only Japanese is supported). Specify the language codes separated by commas as the langs attribute of the main <theme> element:

<theme version="1" langs="ja">

Keep in mind that the button and button_desel fonts should always be different in some way (weight, size, color). Otherwise, you will not be able to tell the currently selected options in the options menu.

 

Pop the Bubbles!

Being able to pop the bubbles in the background of the HBC was a frequent request, and as of 1.0, it is possible.

Press

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+

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and the animated background will be the only thing visible, along with a score counter in the bottom right hand corner. Place the hand cursor over any bubble and it will pop, spawning smaller bubbles and adding to the score counter. The smaller bubbles can also be popped. When you are done, press

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again to return to the list of applications. If you leave the wii on this screen for too long, it will crash.

 

Theming the Homebrew Channel is currently limited to skinning the user interface, i.e., replacing its graphics with same-sized ones. You can skin pretty much any graphical element of the Homebrew Channel, with the exception of the Wii remote pointer and the Homebrew Channel logo in the bottom right. (Yes, you can even insert your own bubble graphics. I propose: mice.)

Please take careful note that the graphics need to be the exact size of the ones they are replacing, there is no stretching/cropping mechanism in place. If the image dimensions mismatch, the image will be ignored and the default image will be used in its place. The same happens if you don’t include a file in the first place. This allows you to selectively skin the HBC. For example, if you only wanted to change the background image, your theme would only include the two background files.

Accompanying the image files is a small XML file named theme.xml. For now, it only includes a few color values and the name of the theme. The color values are in RGBA for the font (which is currently limited to one color GUI-wide) and the gradient to be used in the progress bar.

I believe I can leave you with the new HBC Classic theme as a template for both the sizes and the file naming. I trust you will be able to figure out the purpose of the various image files by their file name. You will notice that the Homebrew Channel’s GUI isn’t terribly complicated and re-uses many of its images in various places.

For theme publishing, I suggest you package theme files like an application. You can even include a screenshot or a cutout as icon.png and your name with the meta.xml file (note that you will still have to supply a theme.xml inside the theme.zip file).

 

Theme repository – or lack thereof

As with applications, we do not intend to create a repository for themes ourselves. Since Wiibrew.org has proven to be a great repository for applications, we think it is a great place to store the accompanying themes. As usual, with Wiibrew, please don’t upload copyrighted content. For themes, this means: No copyrighted imagery, neither of photographic nor illustrative nature. Also, I would think that it is rather pointless to upload background-only themes.

So, there you have it. We are very much looking forward to see how you feel the Homebrew Channel should look like.

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Rules Do not upload themes containing copyrighted material

Use only images you created or that are explicitly(!) released to be re-used in other works. If you are unclear about whether you are allowed to use an image, don't use it. Just because you found an image on the internet, it doesn't mean you are allowed to use it.

Do not bend this rule: Cropping, cutting up, changing the colors or filtering an image does not void its copyright. "Fair use" is not applicable either (and a US-only exemption to copyright anyway). For the time being, Logos are considered somewhat safe, and can be used (if you really, really have to - it's not the pinnacle of creativity to slap a huge company or game logo in the background).

Do not upload themes containing only a background image

Please do at least some customization of the GUI images. Although background-only themes are possible, they are rather pointless.

Keep your descriptions short

When uploading and adding your theme to this page please keep your descriptions short, we don't want to hear the whole story just the basics. If you want to tell your whole story you can put it in the theme's meta.xml file. To avoid clutter and keep this page organized we ask that you please follow this new limit of four lines, this means that you must use the "Show preview" button to make sure that it doesn't go past your theme's screenshot.

 

Starter Pack made by me:

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Edited by Technologx
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Technologx    32

I want to give a heads up to Mac users don't use any Mac archiving app because the HBC doesn't like it for some reason so try the link below.

 

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