JoelStransky wrote: »
Bit off topic but in light of the recent sexist awareness I have to point out that the title of this thread is potentially offensive.
Nihlus wrote: »
I don't know why I can't get a decent map out of anything. Ever. I've spend an entire night until morning trying different things. Hardening edges on seams, making sure the right stuff is checked during obj export, baking using a cage, splitting the uvs, different smoothing groups, the works. I don't know what to do at this point. I've looked on here and read tons of posts by earthquake and whatnot, and I still get this. It slopes in all funky on these faces and I just don't understand what's up with these gradients... I feel so dumb!
Chase wrote: »
Noob question but what do you mean by the gradients are trying to compensate for the shading of the low poly? You mean the low trying to match the high?
Chase wrote: »
Ok so the gradients show up whenever there is a smoothing error which is simply just having soft edges in places that would normally be hard. If you have a synced workflow or using Handplane you can get away with these gradient errors in your normal map no matter how many shading errors there are. Just know that the more smoothing errors your low poly has the more intense the gradient in the normal map will be. This is because the normal map is trying to compensate for these shading errors of the low poly to make the model appear smooth and error free with the normal map applied. Again, this is ok only if you have a synced workflow or are using Handplane. Did I get the gist?
Side note about a synced workflow....I know that this is when your baker to render the normal map matches the engine that will display the normal map. What does this exactly mean? Is it when your baker and engine's X,Y, and Z are all the same?
Chase wrote: »
So gradients aren't a bad thing to have? Alecs video on Handplane was about how these gradients are bad. They show up in order to compensate for what the low polys normals are doing to create the appearance of the high poly. When you say compensate for what the low polys normals are doing to appear high poly this entails making the low match the high in general as well as when you use a combo of smoothed and hard edges like Andy's box example?
mister_s wrote: »
The above being said that reminded me I actually had a question. I have a test bake and I wanted to know if there is anything that can be done (or maybe something I did wrong) about very ugly lines when viewed from near.
When you get near that cube some of the lines inside get really pixelated. When I import that into UDK and a character walks near it it looks hideous. Any suggestions?
metalliandy wrote: »
There is nothing wrong with the gradients you are seeing. They are there to compensate for the shading on the low poly mesh and are perfectly correct.
What are you baking/viewing in?
Have you made sure that your normal map swizzle of the renderer matches the engine/application you are viewing the mesh + Normal map in? (Maya, Marmoset, Unity should be X+Y+Z+ & Max, UDK, CryENGINE 3 should be X+Y-Z+).
If that is correct then following these rules should get you a great bake.If it has a hard edge in 3d space, it must have a break in UV space and padding between it and other islands.
Triangulate your mesh before baking
Use the same mesh that you baked with in game
Use a cage.
Try this out and see if it works.Unwrap the mesh as you would normally
Triangulate your mesh
Set the borders of the UV islands to hard
Make and set up a cage/set up the envelope correctly so that it fully encompasses the high poly mesh
Hope that helps!
Chase wrote: »
Gradients are due to the vertex normals being altered in some way.
This means you have edges sharing the same SG instead of having a hard edge.
Where the gradients show up on the normal map will directly correlate to where the vertex normals have been altered on the model.
The more softened normals there are the more the normal map has to work to compensate for them being there in order to match the smoothing between lp and hp, and the more likely you are to get shading errors/artifacts.
Gradients aren't the cause of errors,
editing the vertex normals are.
To lessen these errors you need to use a synced workflow/Handplane.
You should also be limiting the amount of softened vertex normals in the model by using hard edges at least where the uv splits are. This will lessen the amount of gradation since there'd be less soft edges, ergo less errors.
Obscura wrote: »
1. I prefer 3dsmax because I don't see too much difference, and the "hit only matching material id's" is very useful. UDK and normalmaps are not the best friends, so you can't 100% hide the seams and the bad shading.
2. I don't know, because I don't have seen that video.
3. Synced workflow is when you are using a normalmap that is good for the target engine.http://www.farfarer.com/temp/unityTangentSpace3.png
The one on the middle is synced to Unity.
4. You can use exploded mesh to bake a normalmap, but its not working properly when you want to bake ao.
5. Well, As I said, UDK and normalmaps are not the best friends, so you can do it how you want, the result will be not perfect. But using UV/smoothing splits is working better with UDK. When you are using one smoothing group, then you will get a little ugly shading, and when you are using uv/smoothing splits, then you will get hard edges in UDK.
These are my experiences.
cptSwing wrote: »
xNormal's AO baking is way faster though. And you can use blockers to stop rays from hitting areas you don't want them to.
.Wiki wrote: »
Have you set enough padding in your baking setup?
Your uvs are really poor. Use the full space of your uv and not only the two upper thirds.
Your uvs also look distorted, make them straight when they are straigt. When they are distorted there will be a jagged edge in your normalmap. When these jagged edges and not enaugh padding come together you get those really nasty black lines.
Your uvs are looking as if they are not in an equal size related to each other. Scale them so that every piece of your mesh has the same texture resolution. You can check this with a checker pattern.
bharatnag wrote: »
So I use Blender for my regular 3D work and have no idea so as how to create a cage mesh for baking inside blender. I used topogun to bake out some textures as it gives me a cage option to tweak around and I solved most of the problems that I was facing (http://www.polycount.com/forum/showthread.php?t=124843) with topogun. but it comes with its own little problems. the bakes look noisy and fragmented at some places. Its easy for me to go to photoshop and correct them but I want to know what might be the possible reasons for these artifacts.
metalliandy wrote: »
I'm glad you posted to ask for help with this as the last thing you should ever do it edit your normal maps in Photoshop to remove stuff like this. It opens a huge can of worms & can really mess your bake up
For the custom cage, I use this method.Triangulate your LP mesh using the Triangulate modifier set to Beauty. If you have already triangulated your mesh you can skip this step.
Set up your smoothing groups/hard edges in Blender and add the EdgeSplit modifier to the modifier stack. Set this to 'Sharp Edges'.
Make a duplicate of your LP mesh (without the Edge Split modifier applied, though still active in the stack)
Add a solidify modifier to it and move it above the edge split modifier in the stack.
Uncheck "Fill Rim" and check "Even Thickness" and "High Quality Normals"
Change the "Thickness" into a minus number, so that it covers your HP mesh entirely
Apply the Solidify modifier
Go into Edit mode and select one of the faces of the outer most mesh.
Invert the selection and delete the inner mesh.
Go back into Object mode and apply the Triangulate & Edge split modifiers.
Export the mesh with UV's and Normals.
Make sure that "Keep vertex Order' is checked in the obj export setting or you will get an error saying that the cage doesn't match the LP mesh.
That should export a perfect cage mesh, with all the smoothing groups intact and you should now get a perfect bake.
I have seen people say that they use the displacement modifier on the LP mesh to get a cage, but the results of the push are not as accurate so I wouldn't recommend it.
It has been decimated and some of the verts are in such a position that
metalliandy wrote: »
I guess the only way to find out is try a bake in xNormal.
Seriously though, it looks to me like one of the following:The cage is intersecting with the HP mesh.
It has been decimated and some of the verts are in such a position that causes the edges to overlap in an odd way (concave face).
Make sure the cage fully encompasses the HP mesh with zero intersections.