I'm modeling the picture below in 3ds Max and had a couple of quick questions about workflow.
1: for the Phone alpha in the center of the number piece and the floral design on the main box part should I use an alpha to put those directly on the mesh in zbrush or put them on in Substance?
They barely stick out so I thought substance would be a better option but, if so this leads me to my second question.
2: Does a bump map utilize the existing geometry (low poly) or the normal map? If I was to put that alpha on in substance would I need to add extra maybe even unnecessary polygons to the low poly or would it be utilizing the high poly normal map?
Bonus question: is there any software besides photoshop that I can create those Alphas with that is either free or has a student version?
(This model is for portfolio mainly but, I'm modeling it as if it would be game ready)