TFX 3View

We modders struggle with the complicated file format Digital Image Design used for their games – so I decided to write a viewer. It’s compatible with the .3 file format from TFX (), EF2000 (), F‑22: Air Dominance Fighter (), and F‑22 Total Air War ().

3View displaying the F-22 model from Total Air War



One day I’ll write a setup for this …

  1. System requirements:
    • I personally tested it on Windows 7 only, but it should work with Windows XP and Windows Vista, too.
    • You need a Direct3D 9-compatible graphics card (ATI Radeon 9500 / Nvidia GeForce MX or higher – basically any decent GPU you bought after ).
  2. Download and install Microsoft’s Visual C++ 2010 SP1 Redistributables (x86). Otherwise, 3View will not start due to MSVCR100.DLL missing.
  3. If you are running a Windows version older than Windows 7, download and install the DirectX End-User Runtimes (June 2010). Otherwise, 3View will not start due to D3DX9_43.DLL missing.
  4. Get an extracted copy of the game whose models you’d like to view. An extracted copy of Total Air War, for example, can be obtained as F‑22 Total Air War 2.30.
  5. Extract 3View.exe to the main directory of the game. Typically that’s the one named PROGRAM.
  6. Navigate to the 3 subdirectory. Open a .3 file.
  7. When asked how to open the file, select the 3View.exe you just placed.


Controls just like in Total Air War's Quick Combat screen:

left mouse button rotate model
right mouse button adjust distance
mouse wheel zoom

Parameters control the model’s state, e.g. damage. You see the currently selected parameter in the top left behind PARAMETER #:.

previous parameter
next parameter
A increase parameter
S decrease parameter

We have yet to identify all parameters, but common numbers are:

7 damage
1, 2, 3 landing gear and the orientation of rotors and turrets

You can see aswan_j.3 breaking by pressing the right arrow key until parameter #7 is selected and increasing the parameter by holding A.

Dynamic time of day and debugging functions:

F1 toggle wireframe mode
F2 cycle time of day
N enable night vision goggles (only at night)
F3 toggle AGP rendering, which was introduced for Total Air War
F12 toggle debugging mode, which will write a log to stdout (which is usually the console, but can be a file if you started the application from the command line)

You can load supershapes (SSD files from the SS subdirectory) as well!