akkamaddi wrote:I think I got it. Thank you.
Yup, it sounds like you have indeed absorbed all the necessary dark knowledge. The cruel truth here though is that what you actually now understand is the basic architecture for the system for building recolorable starship assets -- it's the ship art that actually needs the whole build system. There's actually no terribly good reason for the PopIcon art to be built at all; had my whims been slightly different when coding it all up, they'd probably just be plain PNGs, and thus far easier to mod
(Though while modders suffer under the current architecture, the plus side is that if Arioch and I ever do think of a good reason to start applying procedural palette shifts to pop icons, doing so will be relatively easy.)