What's your favorite way to make a lowpoly from a sculpt?

polycounter lvl 6
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Popol polycounter lvl 6
To make a lowpoly from a sculpt I've always use 3D-Coat. However where I work I have to use 3dsmax or Zbrush for that, which is incredibly painful when you're used to the beautiful retopo tools of 3D-Coat.

So that made me think, are any of you used to make a lowpoly from a sculpt without awesome programs like 3D-Coat and Topogun? If yes, how?

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  • MM
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    MM polycounter lvl 11
    i use Topogun for almost every project.
    Is it a technical issue or a money issue that your studio only allows max or zbrush for that ?
    Topogun license is only $100 for one seat.
    even the smallest of studios could easily afford one seat of Topogun.
  • Popol
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    Popol polycounter lvl 6
    As I've just started working there this week I don't really know if it's a technical issue but it's definitely not a financial one.

    The wierd thing is that the other character artists are totally fine with it and have their own way of making a retopo with these tools. That's why I was wondering if many other artist don't need topogun or 3D-Coat.
  • beefaroni
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    beefaroni greentooth
    I find myself using Maya's Quad Draw feature a lot for re-topology. I wonder if the newer versions of Max have something similar?
  • Justin Meisse
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    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 12
    I've worked with Max 2009 and below forever, I've only recently just used Max 2014 at my current job and the graphite freeform modeling tools seem decent at retopology but I haven't really dug too far into them.
  • skylebones
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    skylebones polycounter lvl 7
    Like you I use 3dcoat's retopo tools and love em! I would name my next kid after it's tools of that was socially acceptable.

    Have you asked if they will get you a license and use the tool or are you just assuming they would say no? If it speeds up your workflow I can't imagine a boss would turn you down on it. I wrote up a list of why 3dcoat would improve my workflow and how it would seamlessly integrate into our environment pipeline and presented it to our Art Director for consideration. At first I was the only one using it, but after others saw how fast I can UV and paint objects it quickly spread.
  • Dudestein
    I used to use Topogun but don't anymore. In fact I still have a license I no longer use. I find that it creates a lot of wonky geometry because it's constantly trying to automatically make quads wherever it can. Plus I didn't feel it got updated often enough.

    These days I just use the graphite tools in Max. It feels a little slower than Topogun because I'm regularly having to go back up to the graphite tools to switch tools instead of having good hotkeys set up for them. I still prefer it though.
  • Popol
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    Popol polycounter lvl 6
    skylebones : It's always good to meet another 3D-Coat lover! Haha. Well I don't think I can make this kind of demand yet on the first week of my first job ^^

    Justin Meisse & dustinbrown : I've been maybe a little too harsh on 3dsmax retopo tools as they feel so different from 3D-Coat. If you guys seem to be fine with it I should try to give it another chance. It just felt so slow and I was a little embarrassed as I'm used to be quite fast at retopo.
  • Justin Meisse
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    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 12
    well, don't take my word for it, I never had to retopo anything before and the stuff I'm working on now are pre-rendered sprites, so I can be sloppy.
  • Shiniku
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    Shiniku polycounter lvl 7
    For awhile 3d coat was my preferred retopo tool, and I still love it. But at work I didn't have it, so I had to rely on 3ds max's graphite modeling tools a little more, which I already had some experience with.

    Long story short, I love it - I'm faster and more precise with retopoing in max than I am in 3dcoat or topogun. When I used to retopo in 3dcoat I would always have to go into max anyway and make adjustments, and I would always find some weird geo or holes somewhere. or even worse, I wouldn't find them until I've already UV mapped or something. Anyway, the extra precision and familiar tools of max have really helped me out a lot, especially when something I'm retopoing has some hard surface elements.
  • Blond
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    Blond polycounter lvl 3
    Quad draw in Maya 2014 is kinda good at it.
  • Mongrelman
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    Mongrelman polycounter lvl 11
    I use Blender; some useful tools in there and can do some very handy things with the modifier stack. I also had a go with the contours retopology plugin recently which was good at what it did (bit limited at the moment).

    An example with the modifier stack;

    I brought in a decimated model from zbrush then created a new mesh for retopo (I also had a basic rig with a test animation for deformation)

    Mirror
    Subsurf
    Shrinkwrap
    Armature (skins mesh to rig)


    So this would mirror the geometry, which would then be subdivided. This new geometry would then be projected onto the source mesh to give the shape and details, and then it would all be deformed with the rig. The pose can be asymmetrical too as it takes place after the projection, and allows for editing the base geometry whilst the mesh in is a posed form and still see the projected details.

    retopo_1.jpg
  • Popol
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    Popol polycounter lvl 6
    Yeah Blender seems to have some nice retopology tools. I could give it a try during my free time and switch to this if I like it better than max.
  • JohnnyRaptor
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    JohnnyRaptor polycounter lvl 8
    the retopo tool shouldnt really cause any technical issues. its in the middle of the pipeline and the mesh you generate will need to be worked on in whatever tool you export from/animate in afterwards anyways.

    i use topogun exclusively, and its dirtcheap as MM said. Not sure about 3d coat, but if its in the same price range, just have a chat with your leads and im sure they will get a lisc for you. Just make sure to get across how much more efficient you would be in that tool.
  • Baj Singh
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    Baj Singh polycounter lvl 7
    Graphite tools in Max. Ive started experimenting with ZRemesher as a base retopo before modifying it with mixed results.
  • Torch
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    Torch polycounter lvl 6
    Imo there are few tools that retopo better than 3d coat, it's just awesome for it. Haven't tried Blender yet but have heard good things about it as well. Topogun always seemed a bit clunky to me but the AO baker in it is sweet! If you're using Max I'd recommend checking out Wrapit, pretty cheap for a licence too.
  • stevston89
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    stevston89 polycounter lvl 5
    Graphite tools in max. I don't like adding a whole bunch of external tools to my workflow. Plus because it's in max I have all of the modeling tools there to make and changes I want and really customize the mesh.
  • JacqueChoi
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    JacqueChoi greentooth
    +1 to Graphite.

    Added bonus of going into Edit Poly, and tweaking shit without having to leave my software.
  • Bal
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    Bal polycounter lvl 11
    If you feel like you're faster with 3D-Coat, install the demo version at work and demo it to your lead and a few other artists. I did this a few years ago and now all the artists here use it, for retopology and texture projections.

    That isn't to say 3D-Coat is better than whatever other tool, it depends on the artists, and on what you are retopoligizing, but just because everyone is already doing it their own way doesn't mean you shouldn't try to show other options to people. Maybe they will like it, or maybe they will prefer their way and explain to you why, both end results seem positive.
  • Tobbo
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    Tobbo polycounter lvl 5
    I recently tried the Graphite tools inside of 3ds Max and love it! It's easy and fast once you get the hang of it.
  • slosh
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    slosh greentooth
    I use quadraw in maya...
  • oglu
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    oglu polycounter lvl 8
    slosh wrote: »
    I use quadraw in maya...

    same here...
  • skyline5gtr
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    skyline5gtr polycounter lvl 3
    Graphite Tools work well for me
  • Popol
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    Popol polycounter lvl 6
    Waw, I'm quite surprised so many artists use the Graphite tools! Thanks for the tips guys =)
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