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Thread: 2018 - Vertex Normal Map

  1. #16
    Dreamer Ztreem's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigHache View Post
    Ouch. That is dreadful.

    I emailed Oliver about his Create Smoothing Groups tool within OD 2018 Tool Set and he confirmed it exported in FBX and he was able to bring into a game engine so I'm going to work with that for the moment. I'll test it myself later today.
    Then I suspect its only smoothing groups and no vertex normals, if its not a new fbx exporter? The only way to get vertex normals to and from LW is with obj. Fbx in LW doesn’t support vertex normals.
    Sorry to say but LW for game assets isn’t the best choice, you can do things with akward and cumbersome workarounds, but if you do it often you should look for a better tool.

  2. #17
    Super Member samurai_x's Avatar
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    I would grab modo indie perpetual license while they're still offering it on steam.
    Best modeller for the money until we get updates to modeller in 2025.

  3. #18
    Lightwave Pimp Skonk's Avatar
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    FBX export and then importing into Unity seems to respect the "Smooth" setting on surfaces now (multiple surfaces on the same mesh with different Smooth settings carry into Unity).

    Otherwise I've always just used the cut/paste trick (or unwelding points as needed).
    uh wha?

  4. #19
    Kamehameha Chameleon BigHache's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sensei View Post
    I sent you PM.. Mine worked fine in Modo at least.. Write to me through regular e-mail (TrueArt > Contact).
    Then I will send you files for testing,
    and I will send you files for testing..
    Thank you. I saw this real quick last night but I was working through testing one method first. Will reply later today.

    Quote Originally Posted by samurai_x View Post
    Modo indie is a good cheap alternative.
    Thanks, I'll take a look.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ztreem View Post
    Then I suspect its only smoothing groups and no vertex normals, if its not a new fbx exporter? The only way to get vertex normals to and from LW is with obj. Fbx in LW doesn’t support vertex normals.
    Sorry to say but LW for game assets isn’t the best choice, you can do things with akward and cumbersome workarounds, but if you do it often you should look for a better tool.
    OK this sounds like my suspect then. I wasn't aware that FBX export from LW didn't support vertex normals. That is problematic for files that have animation.
    Yeah, I know LW isn't the best choice for game assets but it's what I have, and this is a hobby for me at home so I can't just go grab tools and bake the cost into a quote as there are no quotes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Skonk View Post
    FBX export and then importing into Unity seems to respect the "Smooth" setting on surfaces now (multiple surfaces on the same mesh with different Smooth settings carry into Unity).

    Otherwise I've always just used the cut/paste trick (or unwelding points as needed).
    Yes you can import the "Smooth" setting from the mesh or Calculate a smoothing angle in Unity. Though the Calculate feature will effectively replicate the Smoothing angle already available within LW. No ground gained there.
    Using multiple surfaces will suffice for a small project, but that won't hold you for long.

    Thank you everyone for your input. More testing and research to be done.

  5. #20
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    Is it feasable in your project to replace the mesh in the fbx with an obj mesh within unity? Should be a simple matter of swapping out the skinned mesh in the skinned mesh renderer module and saving it as a new prefab.

    You would need to do two exports one fbx and one mesh, but it wouldn’t be that much of a headache.

  6. #21
    Kamehameha Chameleon BigHache's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hypersuperduper View Post
    Is it feasable in your project to replace the mesh in the fbx with an obj mesh within unity?
    That's an interesting thought. In theory it sounds feasible, yes. How does Unity treat the build would be my question.

  7. #22
    Super Member CaptainMarlowe's Avatar
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    I didn't try with unity. But crreating vertex normal maps with OD_tools and export fbx 2016 with smoothing groups enabled carry them in unreal engine.

  8. #23
    If youre on a tight budget, you should consider Blender which is a more game asset friendly app.

  9. #24
    Dreamer Ztreem's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigHache View Post
    That's an interesting thought. In theory it sounds feasible, yes. How does Unity treat the build would be my question.
    Works good, done it several times in different projects. You can animate and save a fbx with only nulls and then in unity just drag and drop the obj meshes to the fbx hierarchy.

  10. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by hrgiger View Post
    If youre on a tight budget, you should consider Blender which is a more game asset friendly app.
    Some of us actually enjoy working in lightwave though. And if it does what you need there is no reason not to use it. I don’t entirely like the way you just drop your .blend files directly into your unity project either. I’m sure it works fine, but something about it seems iffy to me. I like a nice one way workflow with clear distinctions between my work files and exported assets.

  11. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by hypersuperduper View Post
    Some of us actually enjoy working in lightwave though. And if it does what you need there is no reason not to use it. I don’t entirely like the way you just drop your .blend files directly into your unity project either. I’m sure it works fine, but something about it seems iffy to me. I like a nice one way workflow with clear distinctions between my work files and exported assets.
    Well I was just suggesting Blender because they actually provide tools which allow for easier workflow to game engines and its free. Part of the whole reason I moved to Modo for asset creation was because of game friendly features including Vertex normal tookit/smoothing groups, game units, dedicated baking toolset, Unity/Unreal export, excellent fbx support, top notch UV toolset, Unreal bridge, retopology and of course real time preview of PBR in viewport. And Blender also has similar offerings. Modeler has close to none of that.

  12. #27
    Dreamer Ztreem's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hypersuperduper View Post
    Some of us actually enjoy working in lightwave though. And if it does what you need there is no reason not to use it. I don’t entirely like the way you just drop your .blend files directly into your unity project either. I’m sure it works fine, but something about it seems iffy to me. I like a nice one way workflow with clear distinctions between my work files and exported assets.
    There is a plugin for reading LW files in unity as well. I think it followed with LW2015.
    Just because you can read blender or lw files you don’t need to use it.

  13. #28
    Kamehameha Chameleon BigHache's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ztreem View Post
    There is a plugin for reading LW files in unity as well. I think it followed with LW2015.
    Good call. Wouldn't have even thought to ask the question.
    https://docs.unity3d.com/Manual/HOWT...Lightwave.html

    It's worth testing at least.

  14. #29
    Kamehameha Chameleon BigHache's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainMarlowe View Post
    I didn't try with unity. But crreating vertex normal maps with OD_tools and export fbx 2016 with smoothing groups enabled carry them in unreal engine.
    I'm still running LW 2105 and use the built in FBX exporter, which I think is part of my issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by hrgiger View Post
    If youre on a tight budget, you should consider Blender which is a more game asset friendly app.
    If I don't get this solved I may have to do that. I'd like to use the tools I bought and paid for... :/

    Quote Originally Posted by Ztreem View Post
    Works good, done it several times in different projects. You can animate and save a fbx with only nulls and then in unity just drag and drop the obj meshes to the fbx hierarchy.
    I tried and yes it works. I was chatting with a guy a work and he was not 100% positive, but is leaning toward this still requires the engine to load both meshes. I think this may unnecessarily bloat the size of the project.


    I did not get the LW->Unity package to work last night, which is not really a big deal. I'm sure it's something simple that I missed but wasn't a feature I was exactly looking for.

  15. #30
    Kamehameha Chameleon BigHache's Avatar
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    Got the LW->Unity package working. The doc page from Unity didn't seem to document the final step.

    This package adds a LightWave menu to the menu bar in Unity and you just have to Choose LightWave Install Path.

    Now I just need to update to 2018 it seems to get the correct Vertex Normals to export for FBX. Progress.

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