Friday, February 25, 2011

At a Crossroads

Hi, again!  Raven here.  I guess I've been inspired lately, because I have gone ahead and created the 3D static meshes for the road textures I made.  The pic below shows an intersection, it shows the different types of road piece arranged into a crossroad.  I tried to make models in 3DS Max and then import them into UDK with UV maps for textures.  I found it seems to be a bit easier, for simple models at least, it is easier to create the model in UDK.  UDK has tools for modeling with their builder brush, for moving vertexes around, cutting it into more polygons to create more complex models... UDK has the basic tools available in 3DS Max, I guess UDK's modeling is to 3DS Max like MS Paint is to Photoshop.  Once the model is done, I can add textures and then convert it to a static mesh to save it, and static meshes use fewer resources than the brushes.  This has worked great for putting together the meshes for the road pieces.  I hope my inspiration continues, more progress to come!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

On the Road Again

Hey, everyone.  Raven here.  It's been a long time since I've posted... or it seems since anyone has posted...  o.O  My excuse is that I have been drowning in the depths of a bottomless depression, but I think I might have finally clawed my way out of that.  Enough to do a bit more, at least.  What I have been doing is using Photoshop to create the textures for the roads I will be using to create the city streets in UDK.  I have put together a small set of roads so far to include basic straight roads and an intersection, both with and without crosswalks... I'm afraid this is all I have to show for all of this time, but at least it's something!  ^_^

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Following the Map to Success! ^_^

Hey, everyone, Raven Knight here again to report another piece of success.  This involves me finally learning how to create custom texture maps to be used on our custom models, or on models offered for free use.  Using the UVW Unwrap feature of 3DS Max, the upper image below can be used as a texture for a 3D model, as it is shown in the lower picture below.  This will allow me to apply much more detailed textures to my models and also be able to import those textures directly into UDK.  3DS Max does export the UVW texture coordinates when it exports the model, so the same texture map will work in UDK the same as it works in 3DS Max!  I count this as a big step forward, as during my time in school the concept of UVW Unwrap and texture mapping somehow managed to elude me...  Some things are just hard to understand until you really need them and force yourself to sit down and do it!

The UVW mapped textures, this is just a test texture map
The resultant model in 3DS Max with the test texture map applied

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Raven Knight - On The Scale

I have solved the first problem for the game!  I am now able to export a model from 3DS Max, convert it to a .ase file, and then load that file into UDK.  It took a bit of work to get the scaling right, the first time I imported this shop the building was only suitable for giants in the world of UDK... but I have corrected that little problem.  It turns out that 16 UDK units = 1 foot, so I set the 3DS Max system up to scale in feet, 16 3DS Max units = 1 foot, and the results are what this picture shows.  ^_^

Additionally, I found a better way to do the UVW mapping from 3DS Max so I can texture more complex objects with much better accuracy than before.  For this picture I haven't taken the time yet to apply a texture, but this picture is just to test the scale vs. the size of an ordinary character, shown by the skeletal mesh I added to the picture.  So I hope to have more detailed pictures up soon!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

3D Model Issues

Hey, everyone!  There is both good news and bad news to this posting.  The good news is that there are sooooo many generous 3D modelers out there who have made their fantastic work available for free download and even made it free to use in either commercial or non-commercial projects!  I'd like to send out a big THANK YOU to all of you who have made models available for use, it will be a big help in getting this game off the ground... and you helped make it happen!  If you have requested credits, that is absolutely no problems at all, credit should be given where credit is due.

Then there is the bad news...  In the past, I have used 3DS Max's UVW Unwrap to export a map of a 3D model so I know where to align the custom textures since I have been unable to get the textures to export with the .ase file that UDK needs for import.  If anyone reading this knows what I am talking about and has a solution, that would include a way for 3DS Max to export a textured UVW map or have 3DS Max export textures so that UDK can import those textures, I would greatly appreciate any tips.  Otherwise, I have some research to do, which is going to be my next step in this process, which I really hope works out as I found a really nice antique shop offered for free download, it would be perfect for the game, it just has a rather complicated UVW map.