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06/25/11 10:03 AM
Normal Map Creation (noob needs opinions) new Report this article as Inappropriate to us !!!Login to Reply


I'm a total noob at 3D modelling.  Trying to self-teach.  At the moment I'm learning about normal maps, and I see a few options as to how to go about creating them. In particular, I'm trying to focus on game assets, so I'm trying to dress up my meshes with interesting normal maps.

I could use opinions on which of these routes is considered better.

1.  Paint the model using some program that has brushes capable of "depth".

2.  Use a sculpting program to build a quasi higher-resolution model with details and "bake" these onto the original low poly asset.

Thanks for any opinions, tips and warnings!


06/25/11 10:42 PM
Re: Normal Map Creation (noob needs opinions) new [re: pickledzebra]Report this article as Inappropriate to us !!!Login to Reply

I'm not that experienced in gaming, but I have creating my own maps for quite awhile.  That is as fun as the creation of the scene. 

If I understand you right you are asking should you find brushes and paint the meshes after you render them?  I know there are people who do post work, but in making a game, that seems like a lot of work.  By exporting your figure as an OBJ and opening it in UV Mapper your usually get the template from which the creator of the figure used in creating his/her texture.  Take this into a paint program of your choice and go to town.  You will find all kinds of textures on line should you need them.  example, leather, cloth, metal, etc.  Using these will give a more realistic feel.  If you don't want to make your own template, then search for your meshs, texture file if it has one and use it as a template.  this site has a lot textures on it.  If your a member put them to use.   

If the mesh is your creation, then it is up to you to make a UV map for texturing.  Agan UVmapper is one of the ways to do this.

I hope this helps.

05/29/13 12:14 AM
Re: Normal Map Creation (noob needs opinions) [re: pickledzebra]Report this article as Inappropriate to us !!!Login to Reply

If you have Photoshop, there are two filters which can create normalmaps-- one in the Filterforge database (this program is commercial, though), and a free filter by Nvidia in their "Nvidia Tools" section or something like that.

I think there's a GIMP filter as well, but I've never used it as of yet.

As a general rule, though, when you use a Photoshop or Gimp filter to convert an image to Normalmap, you want to add a Gaussian blur of... what was it, 0.5 to 1.0 or 1.0 to 1.5?  I can't remember.  Anyway, you may want to up the contrast of the image after grayscaling it, then add the blur, before you use the Normalmap filter.


Edit: Sorry, I misunderstood the TC's post.  Though maybe this info will be useful to someone...

Edited by IceEmpress on 05/29/13 12:16 AM.

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