Hey Guys, we just started creating some simple tools to enhance our workflows, one of these tools is now ready to lift off. Thanks a lot to benjamin for creating the stuff we need!
NOUN die Backstube | die Backstuben
NOUN a bakery | bakeries
The whole application is based on the idea to use xNormal settings files as a blueprint for baking an arbitrary number of highpoly and lowpoly meshes. Or even better an arbitrary number of setting files with any meshes you want. This really speeds up the process, if you find yourself switching models and output in xNormal all the time, but never really touch the settings themselves.
saves only .tga images
looks only for .obj or .sbm modeldata
Quick step by step guide:
Start the application, and supply it with a valid xNormal install directory
Setup xNormal with one highpoly and one lowpoly mesh, define the maps and all other stuff
Save these settings somewhere, you can setup multiple settings files too if you need some different things.
First, export all your highpoly models with a prefix "hi_" or "high_"
Second, export all your lowpoly models with a prefix "lo_" or "low_"
To avoid intersections you can use a simple folder structure, these get baked one after another.
* Magazine - lo_mag.sbm
* Magazine - hi_mag.obj
* Magazine - hi_ammo.obj
Doubleclick on Backstube.pyw ( if nothing happes try, assocation it with the pythonw.exe in the python install directory) If it still doesnt run, type cmd in the explorer and start the Launcher.pyw from the commandshell, and look what it says - and contact me
Copy&Paste path to modelsfolder into the "Model Directory" entryfield
Copy&Paste path to settings files into the "Settings Directory" entryfield
(optional) setup a destination folder for your baked maps if you do not specify this, everything gets saved into the model directory
Hit "Bake Now" and wait...
Have a lookt at the TestData folder - and try to bake that one first.
The tool generates "xN_'your_settings_filename'.xml" files in each of your modelfolders, these get rewritten every time you click on bake now!
we have a few artists using it already, it seems to be stable. Right now it supports raydistance settings and cages via Xnormals .SBM data. Soon it will support custom exported cage meshes.
Several Artists use it differently, i always create a cage and export this, as it gives the most predictable results, other have created a couple of test presets, baking out a normalmap at different raydistances, picking the best one and bake that.
Others also don't want to fiddle too much with cages and export a short range cage and a long range cage and bake those and mix and match in in Photoshop. it might be somewhat bound to our needs, but how you use it, is totally up to you. If you feel like baking 25 AO maps with different settings, it will do that for you.
But beware, it is made for mass automation, it bakes everything you give it with a fixed set of settings, so if your settings are set to 2048x2048 at 4x AA, it will bake everything it finds at that ratio.
There is more to come, the biggest chunk of our tools is in the works and might take a while, we will have to talk to our current client if it is okay to release it.
But to get a small glimpse, it goes one step further by assembling all baked maps in a given Preset and create the normalmaps and about 90% of the diffuse work for you if you already textured via polypaint in zBrush.
The plan is to expand that to create gloss and spec maps for you as well.
This is more specific to our workflow and our current clients needs, so yeah it might not be a solution everyone can use.
to get an idea:
nothing here was texturized in Photoshop, this is a near final diffusemap the toolkit generates
okay here is a simplified version of what our own tool does, we are preparing the switch to the new ddo and need to change some parts of the workflow
okay how about now? but it is unpolished and not tested much, i would like to add a bit of graphics to the input window down the road.
put it into presets/scripts/airbornstudios there might be more coming
how it works is simple:
Lets assume you baked everything with xnormal (or with backstube to not have to touch xnormal
), your files will always have the same suffixes like _occlusion _vcols _normals and whatnot.
It will collect your files and pack those files based on suffixes into layergroups.
You also have the option to turn on padding, however, you will need xnormals dilation filter to be able to use that
. We will add a routine that asks if that filter is installed, but right now you have to take care yourself.
Note, always bake without padding and let dilation do the job, because then you will never ever have to touch up overlaps based on padding you baked. padding is a postprocess in Xnormal as well, so stay non destructive and keep it a posteffect in your PSDs as well.
<<<<< CLICK !