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(Sorry if I misunderstood the context of what I want, I'm currently noob in game development).

I want to retrieve a 3D model from let's say Saints Row 3, and import it to Unreal Engine 4, is it possible ? If not is there a way to create it from scratch ?

What is the right way to achieve what I want ?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Can you explain what you want to do with this model? And is there a reason you're not able to use your own 3D model, a free asset, or one you've purchased for this purpose? \$\endgroup\$
    – DMGregory
    May 10, 2018 at 6:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ I simply want to use that imported character as an NPC or playable character in third-person view. Create my own 3D model would be great, but my fear is that I won't be able to create that 3D model's face exactly like the character from existing game. The point is it's extremely important for me to create an exact copy of my existing character, and I'm guessing that it might be impossible ! \$\endgroup\$
    – inmate_37
    May 10, 2018 at 8:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ It's not impossible, but depending on your application it may be a breach of copyright. The creators of the original game put a lot of work into crafting that character and its model, and that creative work is theirs. For many applications, you'd need their express permission to use that character in your own project. Because of this, you might find game developers are reluctant to answer this question with anything other than "ask the creator for permission" — we don't want folks just taking our work or that of our colleagues in the industry, so we might not be inclined to make it easy. ;) \$\endgroup\$
    – DMGregory
    May 10, 2018 at 12:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ Oh thats interesting, but I have to mention that my character from existing game was created via In-Game's character customization system, so in fact my character is unique and custom (more or less) is it still impact on the copyright ? And if you dont mind I have another question to ask, is it still possible to create exact copy of the face of my character in let's say Autodesk Maya ? (For private and non-commercial usage of course) \$\endgroup\$
    – inmate_37
    May 11, 2018 at 3:16
  • \$\begingroup\$ The choice of parameters may be yours, but the mesh and textures are still another person's intellectual property, not your own. \$\endgroup\$
    – DMGregory
    May 11, 2018 at 3:18

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Extracting assets from other games is not impossible, but you may find that game developers are reluctant to tell you how or make it easy for you.

That's because even if you've purchased a copy of a game and customized your own character, the underlying mesh and texture data that character uses are the products of other peoples' artistic and technical labour.

Legally, the copyright or licensing rights for those assets are owned by the creators or their studio/publisher (depending on the details of the agreements involved)

So, if we tell you how to extract this data, we're potentially making it easy for less scrupulous visitors to this site to steal content that belongs to us and our fellow developers.

There may be reasons to use this data that are protected under "Fair Use," but we can't guarantee that anything we write here will be used only in this way.

I'd recommend checking into game modding forums if you'd like to explore this further, with a caution to please use your powers only for good. :)

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