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Mr. Man

.cem converter, opener, modifier, etc.?

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I hope this is not in the wrong forum type/section here as I am new and still getting used to this site...


You see, there are unit and building model files in a game called Empire Earth 1. They are all in .cem format, and NO other games except Children of the Nile use these. Stainless Steel Studios (SSSI) have created these with their "special" tools used when they developed the game. Later an expansion pack came out which was created by Mad Doc Inc., with new buildings and units. Now I know what you're thinking "Just get in contact with SSSI or Mad Doc and talk with them! I am pretty sure you can get the tools from them one way or another!"

Well no. Sierra is the publisher of the game and is defunct. SSSI is also defunct. Mad Doc Inc. was bought by Rockstar and rebranded to Rockstar New England. Basically, we have been wanting these tools since (I believe) 2003. To this day nothing. 10 years later. The three companies mentioned never released anything before disappearing, and since these extensions are used by only TWO games in the entire videogame world to this day, there is nothing in the internet either...


We, as in me and the forums I come from, have been on the search for these tools without even coming remotely close to anything! We are willing to pay cash for anybody who could help us...


Our preference is Stainless Steel Studios' .cem to .3ds converter, but if not obtainable that is no end of the world.

The .cem files that come with the game are encrypted, and apparently are "different" from the ones from Children of the Nile, although how is obviously unknown at this point. Apparently .cem files are converted from .3ds to begin with?


On a different note, the company "Rebellion" now holds all rights to the Empire Earth franchise, they bought the rights for who knows what reason a few years back. We have talked with them, but no releasing the source code, no releasing the "special" tools from SSSI, no nothing.


Well, I am not the smartest man, I am merely just a helper or something, on the search for a .cem converter, opener, modifier, etc. since 2011, is all. A way to get access to Empire Earth's source code would also be nice, but that is obviously off topic here.

If anybody requires more info, check this out:


Again, I hope I am not doing something bad by asking this here...


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Our preference is Stainless Steel Studios' .cem to .3ds converter


There almost certainly isn't any such tool.  Video games often use unusual formats in their final release for two main reasons:

  1. So that the file is optimised for run-time use by the engine.  Editor formats (such as .3ds) often contain a lot of extra data that is helpful when modifying a model but isn't needed when displaying that model in game.  To make the final product more efficient, the files are exported into some format (such as your .cem file presumably is) for use in the game.
  2. To provide a basic level of security.  This is usually required by a publisher rather than the developers, but sometimes the developers encrypt data or simply store it in an unusual way to discourage idle tampering with the files.

The original developers would never have needed a tool for converting their runtime format (.cem) back into an editable format (.3ds) because they would have already had access to the original source files created by their artists.


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