MightyBake Tool Announce

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mightybake polycounter lvl 3
Hi Polycount,

I'm Rob, the developer of a new texture baking tool, MightyBake. You can check it out at mightybake.com. It's a new tool and we would appreciate hearing your feedback and any way we can make it better.

You can download it here.

Our custom baking engine can bake large meshes really quickly with a simple intuitive interface.We can bake the following maps currently.

- Normal maps (object & tangents)
- AO maps
- Material ID maps
- Displacement maps
- Height maps
- Vertex colour maps

It will read FBX's for the high or low poly surfaces. It also reads OBJ files out of Z-Brush, including vertex colours.

We also bake right to the target game engine and do all the conversion internally. Lastly, we bake in 16-bits per channel, so you get all the depth you need for later modification. We currently support both FBX & OBJ. We have a custom Maya shelf to make exports easier.

Check out our development roadmap here.

A very kind Polycount user, Malcolm, has provided some helpful video tutorials here - https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...jMM1w7quKi6Ih9.

Rob
MightyBake Developer

Replies

  • Bek
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    Bek greentooth
    Sounds cool, is there a list of supported tangent spaces/game engines? I ask because that's really the only feature that seems unique, and that alone is not worth $99 to me. Any future plans you have that might get attention? Because currently between xN and Handplane all my baking needs are taken care of, for free. If you could prove MightyBake is significantly faster or better than those programs in some way though I'd be interested.

    Also link for the lazy: http://www.mightybake.com/demo/
  • repete
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    repete polycounter lvl 4
    Hi Rob

    Can we see some torture tests done with MightyBake ?

    I like how clean & simple the UI is but I am on the same boat as Bek, if it matches or surpasses xNormal then you can consider me sold :poly121:
  • EarthQuake
    Cool, some feedback:

    Clown maps lolol. You might want to consider calling this something else, like Material ID or simply color maps, as this is the first time I've heard someone refer to them as clown maps, so thats probably going to be confusing to your end users.

    It would be nice to see 3ds Max tangent support.
    No need to triangulate your mesh before baking, MightyBake can triangulate it internally

    Also this is not correct. You will still need to triangulate in your 3d app for best results, the reason for this is very simple, if your internal triangulation differs from the user's trinagulation in their 3d app or game engine, you will get X shaped smoothing errors. Additionally, some apps (like maya) change the mesh normals when you convert from quads to triangles, its all sort of messy. I would take this bullet point off the site as it is misleading.
  • thomasp
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    thomasp polycounter
    i agree with Bek, needs to be clear how this tool is better than xnormal to be worth the trouble.

    EarthQuake: clown map/pass is already a known term for these masks.
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    Wow! Thanks for the feedback!

    I'll get to work on some torture tests. We did many while we were developing to make sure it was faster than the other software. We'll put together some comparisons and post it back here.

    @Bek Our plan is to be the fastest with the cleanest results. If you find that any model or bake is slower than another package and we will work to make it faster. I hope you'll be happy with the results. While xN and Handplane are both great pieces of software, we have worked to streamline the workflow and reduce the opportunities for mistakes and rework, as well as making baking faster. We totally understand that it's hard to compete with free software, so MightyBake may not be right for everyone, but we hope we can make it as appealing an option as we can.


    @EarthQuake: You're absolutely right about the triangulation needing to match, that's why we've done a lot of work to get the workflow smooth. With our Maya export tools, you can model using n-gons and you can choose to bake maps back for the Maya viewport or for whatever engine you want without re-exporting, and we take care of matching the triangulation. If you want perfect control, you always have the option of triangulating yourself, but our workflow makes this easy for most cases.

    @EarthQuake (again): Lol, clown maps. My original name for it was Material ID, but I got feedback from the artists using it that it's called a clown map now :). So I changed it. I'm happy to change it to whatever the going term is.

    @thomasp Our core proposition is faster, higher quality with dead simple workflow that will work in any major target engine without hassle. If that's not enough for people, then xN & Handplane are a great option. We also have a Mac OS X build for mac users, which I don't know how many there are, but we provide it.

    Thanks a lot for the comments and feedback. We will work to put together some stats and examples.

    Rob
    MightyBake Developer
  • Cube Republic
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    Cube Republic polycounter lvl 6
    I really like the hardware ambient occlusion bakes from topogun.
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    Oops, missed one:

    @Bek - Our plan is to support the tangent spaces of any major available engine. Currently we have tested:

    Maya's Viewport 2.0
    Unreal 3
    Unreal 4
    Source
    Unity

    We can add more as needed requested.
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    @Cube Republic - Thanks! We'll check it out.
  • EarthQuake
    mightybake wrote: »
    @EarthQuake: You're absolutely right about the triangulation needing to match, that's why we've done a lot of work to get the workflow smooth. With our Maya export tools, you can model using n-gons and you can choose to bake maps back for the Maya viewport or for whatever engine you want without re-exporting, and we take care of matching the triangulation. If you want perfect control, you always have the option of triangulating yourself, but our workflow makes this easy for most cases.

    If this is specific to maya workflow/plugin you should mention that, right now its a blanket statement that claims artist's don't need to triangulate. What if a quad mesh is exported from Maya but then loaded into an engine that triangulates differently than your app? What about from max or modo or blender or another app? There are a lot of cases where the assumption that triangulation is not needed could be false.
    @EarthQuake (again): Lol, clown maps. My original name for it was Material ID, but I got feedback from the artists using it that it's called a clown map now :). So I changed it. I'm happy to change it to whatever the going term is.

    Thats really weird, I've been working in the industry with baked maps for the last 10 years and have never heard that term, googling seems to suggest the only relevant mention of that term exists on your website as well. So maybe someone you talked to calls it that but its not typically used from my experience, I could be wrong though. Material ID map or Color mask or Material mask are common phrases. Of course, you're free to call it whatever you like, it is your app after all. :)
  • malcolm
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    malcolm Polycount Sponsor
    We've started using this at work, it's rad can't go back to any other baker now. It's kind of like when we made the switch from CrazyBump to Knald, just can't go back once you've used something better. My rave review below.

    The Maya workflow is incredible, can't speak for any other engines except Maya and Unreal 4 since that's all we use. EQ the not having to triangulate stuff actually works I tested this thoroughly when we were evaluating it for work. We can send a mixture of quads tries and ngons out of Maya with the special export buttons and this bakes flawlessly in Maya viewport or Unreal 4 with the drop down in the software. If you don't use the supplied shelf buttons then you get the X shading. Mightybake is like handplane + xNormal built into one program.

    For people wanting to get clean maps into UE4 I thought I'd list the steps as I had to test all this stuff for work. (by the way did anyone ever find they could get UE4 maps out of handplane, I could almost get it to work, but not really). Either way one less piece of software in the pipeline is appreciated since I have like 6 softwares I need to use to make an object these days.

    1. Export your low poly out of Maya using the MightyBake low button, no need to triangulate!
    2. Export your high however you want, or use the high button in Maya.
    3. Export envelope is optional, note envelopes behave like Maya style where they do not contribute to the shape of your bake only block rays from extending too far to help with concave objects.
    4. Run the software and select Unreal 4 drop down.
    5. All the settings will be familiar if you've ever baked a map in Maya, geo normals, surface normals, dilation, blur, etc.
    6. Bake the map.
    7. Export your low out of Maya as .fbx for use in Unreal 4
    -smoothing groups on
    -split per-vertex normals off
    -tangents and binormals on
    -smooth mesh
    -triangulate off
    8. Import the texture into unreal and flip green.
    9. Import the model into unreal when asked import normals only, you will get fucky results if you import normals and tangents, or recompute normals.
    10. Turn on full precision uv's on the static mesh and you're done, perfect UE4 maps without any weird shading or triangle flip errors.

    Edit, and as I was typing EQ replied with a good point I should note my tests are only for Maya + UE4, I haven't tested any other software as all our low poly and our outsourcer's low poly's are done in Maya. I would also note on my machine at home and at work MightyBake is faster than xNormal. I've heard the term clown map, not sure where it came from some guy at works calls it that. Remember when Carmack started using the the term albedo maps and everyone was like, what the fuck is he saying? Ha.
  • repete
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    repete polycounter lvl 4
    malcolm wrote: »
    We've started using this at work, it's rad can't go back to any other baker now. It's kind of like when we made the switch from CrazyBump to Knald, just can't go back once you've used something better. My rave review below.

    The Maya workflow is incredible, can't speak for any other engines except Maya and Unreal 4 since that's all we use. EQ the not having to triangulate stuff actually works I tested this thoroughly when we were evaluating it for work. We can send a mixture of quads tries and ngons out of Maya with the special export buttons and this bakes flawlessly in Maya viewport or Unreal 4 with the drop down in the software. If you don't use the supplied shelf buttons then you get the X shading. Mightybake is like handplane + xNormal built into one program.

    For people wanting to get clean maps into UE4 I thought I'd list the steps as I had to test all this stuff for work. (by the way did anyone ever find they could get UE4 maps out of handplane, I could almost get it to work, but not really). Either way one less piece of software in the pipeline is appreciated since I have like 6 softwares I need to use to make an object these days.

    1. Export your low poly out of Maya using the MightyBake low button, no need to triangulate!
    2. Export your high however you want, or use the high button in Maya.
    3. Export envelope is optional, note envelopes behave like Maya style where they do not contribute to the shape of your bake only block rays from extending too far to help with concave objects.
    4. Run the software and select Unreal 4 drop down.
    5. All the settings will be familiar if you've ever baked a map in Maya, geo normals, surface normals, dilation, blur, etc.
    6. Bake the map.
    7. Export your low out of Maya as .fbx for use in Unreal 4
    -smoothing groups on
    -split per-vertex normals off
    -tangents and binormals on
    -smooth mesh
    -triangulate off
    8. Import the texture into unreal and flip green.
    9. Import the model into unreal when asked import normals only, you will get fucky results if you import normals and tangents, or recompute normals.
    10. Turn on full precision uv's on the static mesh and you're done, perfect UE4 maps without any weird shading or triangle flip errors.

    Edit, and as I was typing EQ replied with a good point I should note my tests are only for Maya + UE4, I haven't tested any other software as all our low poly and our outsourcer's low poly's are done in Maya. I would also note on my machine at home and at work MightyBake is faster than xNormal. I've heard the term clown map, not sure where it came from some guy at works calls it that. Remember when Carmack started using the the term albedo maps and everyone was like, what the fuck is he saying? Ha.


    Oh daddy :poly115:

    I am really liking the sounds of this !
  • JedTheKrampus
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    JedTheKrampus polycounter lvl 5
    It looks really good, but personally if I'm going to spend $99 on software that can only bake maps, it has to support Linux, at least unofficially.
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    @JedTheKrampus Great suggestion! I wasn't sure if there was much interest in Linux, but if there is, we should be able to port it. I'll update you if we're successful.

    [Edit] @JedTheKrampus What distribution would you recommend developing against?
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    @malcolm Thanks for posting the helpful directions and the kind words. Maybe I should call them 'material' maps?
  • [Deleted User]
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    [Deleted User] insane polycounter
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    @EarthQuake Totally fair point. Our workflow to automatically handle the triangulation is primary for FBX from Maya, but it will work also for any FBX that is downstream from any art package headed to the game engines. We looked at how the target engines do their triangulation and make sure to do it the same way when baking. We implemented a specific workflow to bring maps back into the Maya viewport specifically, with a special exporter, and have plans to do that for other packages as people request them. I think Modo is a fantastic package, but I'm not as familiar with the API yet. I'll clear up the language on the website.
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    @TeriyakiStyle Great idea! I'll put it on our roadmap.
  • pior
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    pior polycount lvl 666
    Besides a solid feature list, the one thing you really need to show in order to get the attention of potential users is a realtime video showing the process of getting an asset into one of the target engines through your pipeline, or, at the very least, some footage showing how much better your results are compared to other more approximative solutions.
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    @plor Great point. We'll start working on that.
  • passerby
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    passerby polycounter lvl 8
    Will it support scripting or a CLI interface so ta can integrate it?
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    @passerby We are working on the CLI at the moment. It has the same functionality as the UI and will be releasing it with version 1.3.1 this week. It requires a MB Studio license on the node to run it as it's targeted at pipelines.
  • passerby
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    passerby polycounter lvl 8
    Thanks that is great to hear, defiantly help work flow when things can either be integrated into the 3d package or if it can be put into some of the pipeline scripts. :)
  • JedTheKrampus
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    JedTheKrampus polycounter lvl 5
    I would develop against the Steam Runtime in the distribution of your choice. (Personally I like Xubuntu 14.04 LTS.) If your program depends on CUDA you should ship pre-built CUDA binaries with it that you build with the CUDA SDK. If your program depends on OpenCL you'll have to document that in your installation instructions and make sure that the user has the correct video drivers and OpenCL libraries installed. As far as the distribution method goes, just a tar.gz with the binaries in it will work fine; in my opinion there's no need to build different binary packages for every distribution. If you want good examples of proprietary software packages for Linux, I would refer you to 3D Coat and anything by the Foundry. You can pretty much untar them and run them on any distribution just fine.

    As far as where you should test your port, I would try running it on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS, CentOS 7, Ubuntu 14.10, Arch Linux, Debian-stable, and the latest Fedora, in that order of importance. The first three are the ones that I would definitely test.
  • malcolm
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    malcolm Polycount Sponsor
    Holy shit, people make 3D art on Linux...

    Should rename the clown map to material id map to sync up with quixel since everyone uses that now and is probably what everyone on polycount is expecting when they choose that drop down.
  • passerby
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    passerby polycounter lvl 8
    Is there even enough people working on games on Linux to justify the time to port it to Linux?
    The only large installs of Linux I know of used in games are not on workstations but used in render farms or for the sever architecture.
  • JedTheKrampus
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    JedTheKrampus polycounter lvl 5
    Honestly, there probably isn't enough of a market for it to be worth it, but I'm working on UE4 for Linux at the moment and it would be a good thing to have at least some of the art tools there as well. I guess it depends on how portably you wrote your software as to whether you can port it in a small enough amount of time for it to be worth it.
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    @JedTheKrampus The UI is based on Qt and the GPU acceleration is based on OGL so it's fairly portable. There is a cut using OpenCL but I don't depend on it. I'll put the Linux support on the roadmap.
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    @JedTheKrampus Thanks for the advice on the Linux distros.
  • JedTheKrampus
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    JedTheKrampus polycounter lvl 5
    You're welcome, and if you run into any problems at all, feel free to PM me and I'll answer them to the best of my capabilities for free :)
  • amigo
    As far as where you should test your port, I would try running it on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS, CentOS 7, Ubuntu 14.10, Arch Linux, Debian-stable, and the latest Fedora, in that order of importance. The first three are the ones that I would definitely test.

    @mightybake

    ...and make sure you DON'T use Clang-3.4, unless you are looking for heartaches. :)

    We had enough problems with that specific version when getting UE4 to run in Linux, specifically in Arch. It took weeks to isolate the issue to the compiler and not the engine code. Meh.
  • Farfarer
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    Farfarer Polycount Sponsor
    Looks promising, but for $100 it needs to do leaps and bounds more than I can achieve with Modo & Handplane.

    I'll keep an eye on it, though...
  • mmikkelsen
    malcolm wrote: »
    Holy shit, people make 3D art on Linux...

    I think that's. Holy shit! Someone on Linux pays for software? :)
  • malcolm
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    malcolm Polycount Sponsor
    Hello guys, sorry I've been meaning to post these shots forever, finally getting around to it. Still loving MightyBake, totally worth the 100 bucks in my opinion. Use it for all my home bakes and at work too, our studio got us licenses.

    Shots below are extreme examples obviously, but I'm sure everyone gets the idea since we've been discussing bake errors for like 10 years now on polycount. And yes based on use of soft/hard edges, as well as triangle size you might get less obvious errors in other bakers, also if you force triangulate your mesh you will reduce more errors, but fuck that I use quads, tris, and ngons all over the place in my low poly and it bakes out perfect now. I will never go back to triangulating a mesh before baking it is the dark ages. And fuck having to have the exact same vert order and uv's on your cage to bake, that is horrible. I just export my low and it works which means I can spend more time adjusting uv's and soft/hard edges until my bake looks the way I want it.

    mightybake_test_01.jpg
    mightybake_test_02.jpg
    mightybake_test_03.jpg
    mightybake_test_04.jpg
    mightybake_test_05.jpg
    mightybake_test_06.jpg
  • Bek
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    Bek greentooth
    malcolm wrote: »
    I will never go back to triangulating a mesh before baking it is the dark ages.
    It can be automatic (in some software anyway) and it's non-destructive (Well, unless you overwrite your working mesh for some reason). What makes it such a problem for you? (Just curious).

    Although if your examples have triangulation mismatch from the baker and engine for the xN bakes but not the MB ones then I'd say the results are invalid. (Did you manually triangulate before exporting from maya for the xN bakes or did you let xN triangulate? Since MB can triangulate as engines want (which is sweet) I thought I'd ask. Good to see some examples though :thumbup: If there's a MB trial I might give it a go.
  • ghaztehschmexeh
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    ghaztehschmexeh Polycount Sponsor
    EarthQuake wrote: »
    Thats really weird, I've been working in the industry with baked maps for the last 10 years and have never heard that term, googling seems to suggest the only relevant mention of that term exists on your website as well.

    Obviously not hugely important for this thread, but I thought I would mention that Keyshot uses this term :P

    f821d6b588.png
  • EarthQuake
    Aha, maybe thats where it comes from!
  • malcolm
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    malcolm Polycount Sponsor
    Hey Bek, yep agree totally did not prep the meshes for xNormal, that's why I put in the above post you could reduce further the errors by manually triangulating and such, remember I mentioned these are extreme examples, so results will very. But here's the deal, I personally don't want to do extra work to get clean bakes, I don't want to manually triangulate because then I have to untriangulate to work on the low poly which is a pain because I preview in Maya until I'm happy with my bake then send to unreal. I also don't want to fiddle around with tangent space settings that never seem to work, or give you almost good results. And I also want to put my fist through the screen every time xNormal tells me my cage and low poly don't have matching topology, why is that an issue, Maya's baker and MightyBake don't have this limitation, and I really don't like how the cage changes the shape of your bake, I'm sure some people like this, but I find this adds another variable to the mix that just takes longer to debug and tune. Basically I want to spend time making the art, not fiddling with settings, secret tricks, and manual work to prep a model. I want to make something in Maya and then click bake and have it work in Maya and UE4, like a modern art pipeline. MightyBake saves me a tonne of time because it removes all these painful steps we've gotten used to and then I can put that time back into the model instead of the debugging.

    I'm not sure why everyone is being so harsh in this thread, this software is really good, it speeds up the workflow, the interface is awesome, and it bakes faster than xNormal last time I checked. I'd recommend trying the demo and then posting in the forum for feature requests or bugs if you find some, the MightyBake guy has already fixed a tonne of stuff I reported while I was evaluating it.

    EarthQuake, clown map was renamed to material id shortly after you mentioned it in this thread.
  • Neox
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    Neox polycounter
    to me one of the most important features of xnormal is, that i never have to start it and can just batch my files, be it 1 character with 20 batches, or 100 characters with 100 batches each. I would not want to go back to setting up bakes by hand.

    also please let me bake object space and tangentspace (or as many normalmaps with different settings) as i want. so instead of having a list of options like in xnormal i would like to add my own list, say:

    mikk tangentbase for engine
    maya tangentbase for previewing
    objectspace map for later texturing
    directional ao
    non directional ao
    vertexcolors
    masks
    possibly lightmaps with custom light setup

    and let me run those in one run from script

    ----

    ah for normals, please allow output of 32bit exr maps

    also imagesamplers for bakes, mayas gaussian sampler is awesome for floaters

    an option to enable/disable ao cast and recieve would also be great for floaters

    ----

    catmull clark subdivision (or opensubdiv :o) inside your app, so we can just export basemeshes instead of highly subdivided models would also be cool

    ----

    how do you guys handle cages? xnormal has the .SBM file format which is awesome for this.
  • Christian Fischer
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    Christian Fischer polycounter lvl 5
    speaking of wishlists .. do you think you would be able to integrate something like mia_roundcorners?
    http://www.polycount.com/forum/showpost.php?p=2236280&postcount=2

    Ka1MduZ.png

    cheers christian
  • Axi5
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    Axi5 greentooth
    malcolm wrote: »
    Hey Bek, yep agree totally did not prep the meshes for xNormal, that's why I put in the above post you could reduce further the errors by manually triangulating and such, remember I mentioned these are extreme examples, so results will very. But here's the deal, I personally don't want to do extra work to get clean bakes, I don't want to manually triangulate because then I have to untriangulate to work on the low poly which is a pain because I preview in Maya until I'm happy with my bake then send to unreal. I also don't want to fiddle around with tangent space settings that never seem to work, or give you almost good results. And I also want to put my fist through the screen every time xNormal tells me my cage and low poly don't have matching topology, why is that an issue, Maya's baker and MightyBake don't have this limitation, and I really don't like how the cage changes the shape of your bake, I'm sure some people like this, but I find this adds another variable to the mix that just takes longer to debug and tune. Basically I want to spend time making the art, not fiddling with settings, secret tricks, and manual work to prep a model. I want to make something in Maya and then click bake and have it work in Maya and UE4, like a modern art pipeline. MightyBake saves me a tonne of time because it removes all these painful steps we've gotten used to and then I can put that time back into the model instead of the debugging.

    I'm not sure why everyone is being so harsh in this thread, this software is really good, it speeds up the workflow, the interface is awesome, and it bakes faster than xNormal last time I checked. I'd recommend trying the demo and then posting in the forum for feature requests or bugs if you find some, the MightyBake guy has already fixed a tonne of stuff I reported while I was evaluating it.

    EarthQuake, clown map was renamed to material id shortly after you mentioned it in this thread.

    Heya,

    Just curious how do you replicate the whole cage & low poly topology thing in Xnormal? I've baked in XNormal for a while and have never seen it. My biggest gripes with XNormal come from clunky interface and a 3D cage editor that makes me feel like I'm on an acid trip. Oh and every time I open it I have to remind myself to switch the output file and have lost countless older maps due to accidentally overwriting them. Besides that though I do love it, I'd switch to MB in a heartbeat if it offered XNormal but better, I'll download a trial to see for myself now.

    I think the reason people are being harsh are because they're trying to work out whether it's justifiable to spend money on something that others offer for free. Which I think is completely fair, MB probably knew they were having to shield themselves from a landmine when stepping into this market and they're handling it well. Fast updates, even a port to linux in the works and not so defensive of their own product. Have got lots of respect for the team already, pry me away from XNormal please.

    Rob, you mentioned this will work with any FBX art tool? I'm using Max and will give it some tests. I get tired of collapsing my isoline-turbosmooths every time I export, if you're thinking of building a Max toolchain a simple script that does + the integration with your app, that will be a sweet extra but now that I reminded myself of it I'll probably write that script myself.

    Will try it out now :)

    Edit: wooahh okay it's tall, first thing I noticed. I guess we're all used to working on large res monitors these days but anyone with a smaller resolution than 1920x1080 is going to suffer. Scrollbar or something would be nice :)
  • Neox
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    Neox polycounter
    you are using max why would you even think about doing the cage in xnormal? >_<

    with all the batchers around, there isn't even a need to ever touch xnormal after export.
  • Axi5
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    Axi5 greentooth
    Neox wrote: »
    you are using max why would you even think about doing the cage in xnormal? >_<

    with all the batchers around, there isn't even a need to ever touch xnormal after export.

    Worryingly I somehow prefer doing it in XNormal rather than Max. It's just the way I've always done it. For most objects I don't bother with a cage though, the default ray dist. does a good enough job.

    It's probably why I also haven't seen any skewing effects on my maps that Earthquake brought up not too long ago. As the way I understand it, Max's cage is always averaged, but in XNormal with correctly split smoothing groups it's not.

    I guess I will have to think of a way to revamp my high to low workflow, I'm going to do a fresh model and see how MB works out for me in the next few days.

    A batcher sounds like a great idea though! I'll definitely try set that up :) When MB gets it's CLI put in I'll probably use that.
  • JackDCaron
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    JackDCaron polycounter lvl 4
    Just curious if there was a difference between the standard and pro versions other than price/rights.

    (Btw, I work at a vfx studio that is 90% Linux based, the rest is split btwn mac and PC).
  • Harbinger
    Interesting tool! I think the hesitation you'll meet introducing a tool in this market will probably come from two directions:
    - People/studios who bake in Maya/Max/xNormal/HandPlane, which are free, so you'll have to justify the cost.
    - People who have spent many hours and headaches to figure out a baking pipeline that works for their particular needs, who will be hesitant to try something new only to find that they have to adapt their workflow and process again.

    With that said, you need a trial version! Also, make sure it's full featured and bakes all of the maps that modern PBR workflows are looking for. I don't see mention of position (gradient) maps, curvature and cavity maps that are often used as inputs to drive Quixel or Substance.

    If I can select my high/low/cage meshes from Maya, choose the maps/settings/output location, hit a button to export or bake in MightyBake, and trust that I can get clean results, this would more than justify the cost in a production pipeline.

    As a pie in the sky feature that would really put you over the top, is some kind of network rendering capability. Even at home, I tend to bake my maps on my laptop while I keep working on my desktop, so I do a remote desktop session and manually transfer things back and forth over the network. What if MightyBake had some kind of remote connection so that it can be run on a remote machine or server? That would be killer in a studio environment, but people might hate you for eliminating their excuse for a coffee or smoke break :)
  • malcolm
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    malcolm Polycount Sponsor
    Harbinger, I can answer some of your questions since I've used the tool for quite awhile now and I'm clearly the MightyBake fanboy in this thread.

    JackDCaron there's no difference between the standard and pro versions, same as Knald it's just cheaper for personal use.

    The trial version is on the website.

    Currently the tool only supports AO, Normal, Height, and ID map.

    The baking step takes 2 clicks in Maya 3 if you want a cage, and one click in the tool to fire off the bake. This is assuming you've picked your output path and all that stuff and are just doing a rebake, you can save a preset in MightyBake so you can come back at any point and not have to readd your meshes or fiddle with any settings.

    The tool already bakes a 4k normal map at 35 seconds with production quality settings, I think you'd be hard pressed to get a coffee in that time. For preview bakes a 4k map takes 7 seconds. I just alt tab back to Maya and wait for the map to auto update in the viewport so I can see the pop.
  • mightybake
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    mightybake polycounter lvl 3
    Hi Folks, Rob here.

    Thanks for all our feedback and feature ideas. There's so many great ideas. I'll do my best to address each one.

    Malcolm, thank you for posting the comparison images and the kind words. If anyone has any, please post them so I can make the software better.

    Christian Fischer re: mia_roundcorners - This looks really interesting. I'm going to look into it. What kind of application of it were you looking for? How do you want to use it?

    Bek - MightyBake does the triangulation internally. It will match the target engine unless you're using a pipeline that changes it for your game. If it doesn't let me know and I'll do my best to match it.

    Neox - Very cool feature requests. Right now, the Studio version (i.e. the Pro version) of the software does have a command line interface so you can batch whatever you want. You can even use it from any of your existing tools or pipelines that can run a command line interface. A technical artist at your company could integrate it into a package even with some work.

    Also, have you seen our new 'presets' feature. You can set up a preset for a bake and then create a new one, which makes it easy to back to your earlier bake.

    Regarding the new maps, I'll put them on the feature list and start implementing them. I'll make my way through them over the several of the upcoming releases.

    Regarding the exr, i'll add that asap. I thought that would come along. I've done it before and it's pretty quick.

    Axi5 - Regarding why we ask people to pay for it is that we would like to continue supporting and making it for users that value their time and workflow. Most of what we do can be done by cobbling together other packages into what we think is a less ideal workflow. It's possible, but awkward. At our company, we greatly value our customers time so we want to make the workflow as smooth as possible. This software is a passion project for us and good workflow we think is worth paying for. It's totally understandable if people would rather use free software, but we think the price we are asking for isn't much given how much time it will save our customers. Thanks for checking it out.

    Regarding Max support, if there's enough customers interested in better Max support, we would be happy to support it. At the moment, most of our customers are using Maya. That being said, a lot of it should just work, but given how tricky tangent spaces can be, it's likely there may be some edge cases that need working out. FBX is widely supported, but not all packages make the same flavours. Let me know what your experience is. If you have problems, post them here and I'll see if I can take a crack at fixing them.

    JackDCaron - The key technical difference is our command line interface. We think that some Studios would like to create their own workflow or batch system or pipeline using MightyBake. We give them the flexibility to do that using our command line tool, which has much more acute control over how the bakes are done. If you try it, let me know any features you'd like.

    Harbinger - We do have a demo version, the only thing is that you're limited to 1k and 30 bakes, other than that, it's fully featured.

    Regarding network capabilities, you could use the Studio version with the command line to create your own network batch processes. You could easily run it through a shell. If what you're asking for is a built in render farm, that may take some more time. I will add it to our running feature request list.

    Regarding specific maps - are you asking to be able to specify the location for each map individually?

    Rob
    MightyBake Developer.
  • Christian Fischer
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    Christian Fischer polycounter lvl 5
    mightybake wrote: »
    Christian Fischer re: mia_roundcorners - This looks really interesting. I'm going to look into it. What kind of application of it were you looking for? How do you want to use it?

    hey rob,

    i was just wondering if there is a way to bake normalmaps without the need of a hires subd mesh.
    we would have a lot less work (at least i hope so ;)) if it was possible to bake clean normalmaps from meshes like this for example, where you chamfer edges where they need to be round:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ct9voyU3h0#t=1675
  • Harbinger
    I apologize, I was in a rush yesterday, no idea how I missed the demo link! Grabbing it now! Great to know about the command line in the Studio version.
  • Son Kim
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    Son Kim triangle
    Rob,

    Unreal Engine 4.7 ,which is due out in a couple of weeks will change it tangent basis to MikkTSpace, do you plan on updating MightyBake to support it?

    Anyone know if there is an edge padding option in MightlyBake? I assume Envelope == Cage? It's confusing since everyone else calls it a cage.
  • Axi5
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    Axi5 greentooth
    Son Kim wrote: »
    Rob,

    Unreal Engine 4.7 ,which is due out in a couple of weeks will change it tangent basis to MikkTSpace, do you plan on updating MightyBake to support it?

    Anyone know if there is an edge padding option in MightlyBake? I assume Envelope == Cage? It's confusing since everyone else calls it a cage.

    Not dev but:

    I think you're after the Dilation input.

    Envelope does equal cage as well.

    Also @mightybake, I've been testing it out with Max, it doesn't seem to play nice at all for some reason, it might be the FBX export options I'll keep playing around with it. I would have tested this out a day ago but have been a little busy with Uni :)

    Also with regards to dilation, it sometimes doesn't dilate the whole map, just a certain area of it.
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