View Full Version : Vertex Normal Maps

09-05-2009, 08:26 AM
I remember going through these during 9.6 beta testing, but they didn't really sound like something I'd use so frankly I didn't pay much attention to them.

Now I don't remember what they're for and I was curious. I looked in the web help- no info. PDF surfacing manual- no info. Searching this forum and Google didn't help much either.

Can someone explain it?

09-06-2009, 06:35 PM
Wow 45 views and nobody knows what it's for?

09-06-2009, 06:40 PM
It's to support vertex normals from imported OBJ files. You cannot, as yet, modify them in LW.

09-06-2009, 07:01 PM
Thank you.

09-07-2009, 02:45 PM
It was discussed here:

09-07-2009, 02:48 PM
Also, check out my SolidWorks to LightWave video tutorial, I go into Vertex Normal Maps in that.


09-07-2009, 07:00 PM
Thanks for the video Matt, your website looks good.

"Good for engineers, i guess"

09-07-2009, 07:09 PM
Yes, thanks for the links. Very helpful. :)

09-08-2009, 02:04 AM
I am not a plugin-developer but I think it should not be too difficult to simulate a smoothing group tool to change vertex normals.

I would imagine it as following:
We select a group of polygons. We press a button and the tool will just recalculate the normals in this group through an average mechanism. So they are smooth to each other but can create hard edges to other groups, if the angle is steep enough (compared to the material definitions).

Is it harder than that? I mean this little feature drove tons of game developers away from Lightwave. I am probably one of the last ones while all my colleagues lough at me when they work with Max and Maya. Last time one talked to me like to a school boy because I use an app with no ability to change vertex normals. He said this is like an ancient tool not worth using it.
You see, it is really hard as a game dev to use LW nowadays. There is even no work-around as far as I know.

09-08-2009, 07:37 AM
I agree. I started this thread because of a discussion on the Polycount forum where I was trying to convince them that LW was still viable as a game modeler. It was fine until I got stuck on the response to smoothing groups. Had the same problem when discussing LW with an old friend at a game studio. Oddly this guy went to school with me where we both learned LW.