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Old 02-04-2009, 10:59 PM   #16
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Awsome, im using max9 and I know how to model, texture use normal maps and all the rest of that buhha but i've never done low poly before, i got no idea were to begin so i'l start with asking few noob questions. (dont lough i live in a polygon diprived country)

(q1), If I model a high poly character first whats the best way to do the low poly model, do i continue just working on the intial mesh, or are there a number of other methods of doing it.

(q2), I dont understand what they mean by 10 000 tris, is it 10 000 polygons or triangles, or somthing else completely, and how do i check how many (tris) my character has.

(q3), i'll think of somthing later

answers to these and any other usefull tips and dirty tricks to help get started will be really helpful.

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Old 03-04-2009, 04:31 AM   #17
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q1) Yeah, there are a couple ways to tackel things. If you did your high poly in max/maya, generally the best way to do most of it is just "reverse engineer" your high poly back down to a low poly. Take out edges that you don't need, and leave only the profile/silhouette defining loops.

If that doesn't work for you, you'll just have to build a new low poly. Personally I just start with a plane and start snapping verts to my high poly and extrude out new edges as I go. Generally you'll probably need to do a little bit of both methods depending on your mesh. It's simplest just to break it down in pieces and decide the best way to proceed.

q2) Always count in tri's. They are a "true" poly count, because polygon's only count faces. If you take a single quad, it counts as 1 polygon. If you connect the two opposite verts with an edge, you get 2 tri's....so those 2 tri's equal 1 polygon, even though you haven't created any new geometry. That's why counting by poly's can be misleading. A 18 sided polygon still counts as just one polygon, when in reality it'd be made up of several tri's.

So when you're dealing with low poly, the poly count will always be in tri's.
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Old 03-04-2009, 04:40 AM   #18
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...and to be able to view the tri count, right click the viewport name (perp.,front,left etc)>Configure>Statistics tab and turn on Tri count if it isn't already. Setting it to Total+Selection is good as that way you can select your character and be sure of the exact count. 7 is the hotkey for the statistics.
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Old 03-04-2009, 06:13 AM   #19
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There should be one for 2D, and I'll be answering. coz I pwn in learning if I have to
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Old 04-04-2009, 02:18 AM   #20
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Gray's Anatomy Online:

http://www.bartleby.com/107/indexillus.html

If you're doing organics, get intimate with the osteology and myology sections and images! It'll help you out soooooo much figuring out how everything fits together.
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Old 06-04-2009, 03:51 AM   #21
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I think I have finialised my process in regards to XNormal VS Render to Texture for high polys that actually WORK in Max anyway.
1) Make the low poly and hipoly as needed.
2) Unwrap UVW the low poly
3) Apply a Render to Texture in order to get the cage (projection modifier).
4) Tweak the cage accordingly.
5) Export the hipoly mesh/s to bake in XNormal
6) Export the low poly mesh and include the cage with the XNormal SBM exporter
7) Bake in Xnormal (Press the 'use cage' box in the low poly mesh section) to see quick (and generally very good) results of cage
8) IF seams are obvious then bake from Render to texture using the same cage setup (Max can get rid of seams apparently but takes longer, hence the quick render using XNormal to see how well the cage works before a 'final' render)

For models that Max CAN'T handle (eg.Zbrush) but you really want to use the max cage tools:
1) Make the object in zbrush as you see fit.
2) Reduce the divisions to something max could handle that represents the final shape well and export.
3) Export the Hi Poly out to be used in Xnormal
4) Take your 'Mid Poly' into max and make your lowpoly over it (from scratch or with the original model made in max if you did so).
5) Unwrap UVW the low poly
6) Apply a Render to Texture to get the cage and tweak accordingly
7) Export the low poly mesh and include the cage with the XNormal SBM exporter
8) Bake in Xnormal (Press the 'use cage' box in the low poly mesh section) to see quick (and generally very good) results of cage

If you REALLY want to use Render to Texture with crazy poly counts, I recommend getting PolyCruncher from MooTools to reduce the polycount of your hipoly yet keep pretty good results.
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Old 06-04-2009, 03:54 AM   #22
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Oh, another really useful tip I didn't know about. If you have edge selected in edit poly and press ctrl-backspace you delete the edge AND its vertices.

So a good use of this is cleaning up loops. click edge > Select Loop > Ctrl-Backspace > Loop gone! If you just click Backspace the edge is gone, but it keeps the vertices.
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Old 06-04-2009, 12:23 PM   #23
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Ok one more question, when you make metal material on high poly and want to bake it on lowpoly, do you use lights?
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Old 06-04-2009, 02:28 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by aUGIS View Post
Ok one more question, when you make metal material on high poly and want to bake it on lowpoly, do you use lights?
Only if you want to bake a light map (and perhaps a static shadow map based on a fixed lighting rig) at the same time
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Old 08-04-2009, 02:33 AM   #25
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Big Toe suggested I post this tip up on this thread.

"First, you make a semi rough high res polygon version. This means you sculpt your mesh with only the major forms. This means nothing superficial that can be done with a normal map. You sculpt in basic details (or 'landmarks') that your character has. Then you export the high res version (at a low enough level not to kill your computer) into your native 3d program and do a polygon reduction on it exactly to the maximum polycount for the comp. This should give you an overall idea of how your final will look even though the polygon flow is messed up (don't worry, that's just for the estimate)."

Hope it is useful for those who are unsure about their model and how it fits into the polycount.

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Old 08-04-2009, 06:32 AM   #26
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umm this is a help section ? oh man i even dnt understand the solutions.
1.er is polygon reduction inevitable?how to do it best?
2.i dnt know a speck about how to texture my awesome sculpts,tell me abt normal maps and retopoing Zspheres please.
3.in drawing ,i cant drw legs,(for eg. i make great fragon busts but cant make a full body dragon)
4. also, i can only draw one view of faces , any tips on how to improve turnarounds?
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Old 08-04-2009, 05:53 PM   #27
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1: kinda. big elevation changes and silhoutte are most important in terms of what has to be there
2: unwrapping - get Xnormal.
3+4: draw more - force yourself to do the things you say can't do.
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Old 09-04-2009, 06:19 AM   #28
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Question on texturing:
I heard that some Artists work at double size to get the anti aliasing applied to their image when shrinking down.
Is it true and will that help if I work at 4096X4096 ?
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Old 09-04-2009, 06:55 AM   #29
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aby arty - one way to improve your drawing skills is to look at other peoples work while your drawing, if you have a graphics tablet you can even draw over other artwork in on a new layer until you get used to drawing the body parts you want just make sure you dont do a direct copy of your looking at, this is what i was doing and in no time i was able to draw all sorts of things without having to use references anymore, just keep at it and you'll be able to draw those legs in no time.
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Old 09-04-2009, 12:55 PM   #30
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Sebiomegas: There are a couple of approaches on this. I will be for the normal map as XNormal gets rid of the jaggies a little better if you do that, however I read that you SHOULD do it at the size cos its just a crutch for bad design...or something.

Personally I'm for whatever looks the best. Just make sure you aren't using it as a crutch, and more for enhancing what is already hopefully a good design!
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