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3d Mesh Creation


LukeMc
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Having a first look through v6.

 

As a complete novice in mapping as opposed to multiscreen, what software are you all using to create your 3D meshes in V6?

 

Also what is a standard practice for say importing a model of a building/architectural structure to create content? I have my theories, but would be nice to get a bit of advise from someone who has experience with this already.

 

Cheers!

 

 

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Having a first look through v6.

 

As a complete novice in mapping as opposed to multiscreen, what software are you all using to create your 3D meshes in V6?

 

Also what is a standard practice for say importing a model of a building/architectural structure to create content? I have my theories, but would be nice to get a bit of advise from someone who has experience with this already.

 

Cheers!

I myself have started experiencing with Blender and Sketchup. The standard practice for importing a 3D model and using it for content creation is explained inthe videos 

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Blender and Sketchup are both free programs. WATCHOUT will read basic Blender files as is. I believe you can get  Collada file from the free version of Sketchup (since that's essentially its native format, albeit packaged up in some clever way). I know you can export both OBJ and 3Ds from the "Pro" version of Sketchup.

 

My personally favorite is Cinema3D. A lot of people use 3D Studio Max. Both are rather expensive though. If the above free programs, Sketchup is probably the easiest one to get to grips with. Its texture mapping tools suck, though. Blender is very capable, but has a UI that's not lioke anything else in the known universe, and takes some getting used to. Lots of tutorials on the net though.

 

Mike

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OK. This is what I recalled of as the "work-around":

 

   https://www.khronos.org/collada/wiki/SketchUp

 

However, more recent versions of Sketchup apparently support this directly in the free version:

 

   http://help.sketchup.com/en/article/36203

 

I have not personally experimented with bringing Sketchup models into WATCHOUT via Collada, however. Perhaps someone else have some comments to share here on that subject?

 

I either case, due to the very limited UV mapping capabilities of Sketchup, its probably not a very appropriate tool for ue with WATCHOUT, since UV mapping is an important aspect of what needs to be done in preparation to bringing 3D models into WATCHOUT.

 

Mike

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Been experimenting with Blender using the basic cube that it defaults to on loading. What I've found -

 

1. Blender saves its files as .blend and Watchout will not import this, so I'm not sure what Mike meant when he said "WATCHOUT will read basic Blender files as is".

 

2. Export from Blender as .obj  or .3ds file, and Watchout will read this. However, if the file has not been prepped for Watchout, the error message is "No mesh with texture (UV) coordinates found", and the file will not import.

Note: If you are trying to open a .obj file that was not originally saved by Blender, drag-and-drop will not work. Got to File > Import.

 

3. To prep a mesh with texture (UV) coordinates in Blender, using the cube as an example, I found 2 simple "tutorials" gave me all the principles required to proceed on my own. These tutorials are -

 

a) Selecting and Transforming Objects - Blender Cookie (a basic how to in order to manipulate the basics within Blender)

https://cgcookie.com/blender/lessons/selecting-transforming-objects/

However, the site seems to be down at the moment. Try youtube for lots of basics, some a bit drawn out, or the Blender Wiki.

 

Briefly, Blender defaults to the right-mouse-button for selection. You can change this under File > User Preferences > Input > Select With.

Shift > select click adds to a selection. Shift > select double click de-selects a selection. This is useful for selecting/combining faces where you want to have the same UV/texture coordinates. "Transform" function with/without shortcut keys, allows you to move, rotate, or scale the object/faces. Ctrl-Z to undo.

 

B) UV Coordinates in Blender

file:///C:/Utils%20&%20Downloads/Blender/UV%20coordinates%20in%20Blender%20-%20PioneerWiki.htm

especially the topics "UV Unwrapping", "Setup Blender", and "Basic Method".

 

With the cube, one could unwrap each face one by one and associate each face with a texture (flat colour; prep some different colours with a paint program; 256x256 pixels will do) rather than the whole cube. This eventually allows Watchout to re-apply a texture to each face rather than one texture to all the faces.

 

Export the file as .obj or .3ds and voila! Watchout will now accept the file since it has texture (UV) coordinates.

 

Thomas

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I've had success with some Blender models, but not with others. We're looking into this. Meanwhile, you can export as 3DS or OBJ, which seems to work fine. Keep in mind that models must have UV coordinates in order to work with WATCHOUT.

 

Mike

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The difficulty I have been having is the direction of the UVW Coordinates.

 

The car obj file in the video demo seems to have its coords running from the front of the car to the rear, including the window coords, such that when the snow.m2v is textured onto the car in the demo, the snow 'falls' from the front to the rear of the car.

 

However, I tried the same snow.m2v file with another car obj file downloaded from the net, and the snow 'falls' from, say the left side of the car to the right side, if not all over in mixed directions. I think it is the UVW coordinates mapped to the car obj file I downloaded. Tried other obj files with the same 'confusing directional' results.

 

Trying to make sense of these UVW coords and directions. Rotating in the original 3D file and re-exporting does not seem to help at the moment, and the mesh making up even a simple window is not in one piece/face but in hundreds of small triangles, so re-orientating a mesh is near impossible. Struggling!

 

Thomas

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Above posted too soon!! Problem solved!

 

Somehow I accidentally discovered a method to change the UVW coordinates of the 3D model car I downloaded, and when textured with the snow.m2v file, the snow now 'falls' from front of car towards the rear. Managed to repeat the accident! Using Blender. Now it takes maybe 5-10 seconds to change the UVW coordinates to the desired direction, instead of 2 days!!

 

Thomas

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Rotating the mesh in the 3D file has no effect on UV. You need to open the UV editor in your 3D program and rotate the UV coordinates. Alternatively, you can of course rotate the texture in WATCHOUT, if it flows in the wrong direction.

 

Some models have their UV all over the place. Particularly if the creator of the model tried to optimize a single texture for the various parts of the model. In case it's a static model, this doesn't matter. But if you want to texture it dynamically or with a video, you may want to arrange the texture coordinates in a sensible way in relation to the "flow" around the object. This is an art in itself, and really beyond the scope of what WATCHOUT does, much in the same way as making a good and engaging video is (although you can then of course play that video back through WATCHOUT).

 

Mike

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Initially, I did rotate the UV coordinates in the UV Editor window - 90 degrees clockwise and anti-c, then 180 degrees, etc - but the result was not the desired one. Looking back I think the wrong mesh was selected and unwrapped. It was the mesh inside the vehicle - the seats, engine, etc.

 

Eventually, I managed to select the entire body, windows and wheels, and the UV Editor showed two textures, one of which showed the shape of the vehicle cut into whole parts, eg. half of left side, half of right side, bonnet, etc. That seemed more like it, I thought. Rotated both textures clockwise 90 degrees, exported to obj, imported to Watchout, applied the snow.m2v as texture, and voila! All was sweet  :rolleyes: 

 

Thomas

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