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Blog Entries posted by YouGroove

  1. YouGroove
    A quick overview of 3D coat Retopology with some tips also.
    The goal is to retopology previous high poly model from Sculptris into a Low poly model in 3D coat :

    Fisrt step is import obj model in 3D coat as Reference model, we will use the model below from sculptris.

    Begin in symmetry mode to add a polygon to start :

    Then use 3D coat quads to very quicly add quads over the model :
    You will need to have a good toplogy so follow lops and edges

    The goal si very low poly enought so not lot of detailling

    In early steps we will check if normal map rendering is ok.
    So let's begin to make some UV seams loops and Click unwrap

    On normal map generation parameters :
    You can adjust the two values if needed or if you have map glitches
    The second paramter choosen is : keep cage point weld to exterior surface

    Choose low resolution to render and test fast

    Than launch render normal map.
    In paint view in sub objects panel : hidde default hight poly
    Than check low poly retopo and normal map

    Some tip on Preference window of 3D coat :
    I choose alwats Maya as parameter for normal map calculation insteda of 3D coat ones and results are really good.

    Continue Retopo following loops

    Use loop cut when needed (specially where it will be bending animation possible)

    From cylinder create more faces for a bigger cylinder jonction

    I could use lines drawing , but quads are fast enought in some cases to make a cylinder

    Begin legs area :

    Add more polygons to make some round circel from where we will make the legs parts

    Special method here some time faster for some stuff :
    instead of drawing lines make a long cylinder

    Than use Lopp cut

    You will have to adjust vertex and sometimes delete / remake some quads
    So better use draw lines, but this method can work also.
    The vertex seems deep inside the model like below , because Zbias paramter is low like 3.0 not always good.

    Change it to 10
    The vertex will be outside of the model and you will be able to move them or do anything else now.

    Main parts are done, you can make uv loops and test normal map generation to see if
    some correction are needed.

    Now for the arms we will use a standard and fast technique : Drawing lines

    Click enter to generate the polygons
    Once this is done, sometimes you will see lot of polygons that can be reduced manually to optimize your low poly model.
    Just move vertex very near another to join them , or use "Fusion" tool on 3D coat.

    For foots, its just polygon drawing

    Beginning the hands


    Making additionnal objects retopo

    Once all is done make the loops semas UV and check model
    picture below UV are not colored, a 3D coat big appeared in fact

    Because of symmetry retopology and texture, you will use half texture mirrored in game.
    But the with the normal map it will be lot more visible than a simple diffuse map
    Like below :

    Because of the UV semas beeing in the middle symmetry line :

    This will be oubvious in game on your 3D engine if your camera will be not too far from character
    To avoid that you'll have to use a different UV mapping to hide the UV seams :

    Some another good example to avoid the middle visible line seam on character

    So here is how to do that in 3D coat :
    Uncheck Virtual mirror :

    Apply symmetry retopo and UV to all layers :

    So all Retopo and UV seams will be copied in other side.
    Next step is remove all middle line UV seams , and make new UV seams loops on entire character as examples above.

    Because you no more use Symmetry to optimise bitmap size, you can adjust similar UV islands to be in the same place in the bitmap, for example the arms or hands :

    You'll have to mirror Uv semas : Flip U or Flip V in 3D coat , than rotate/move UV seams to be perfectly one over the other

    You have some usefull tools in 3D coat :
    -Auto UV for non 3D artists, not best results indeed but can be good in some cases
    -Relax tool to use on UV when they are too shrinked on some zones
    So the model is ready to bake normal map :

    After normal map baking here is the low poly model with normal map ready to paint :

    3D coat wireframe view :

    (Next step perhaps model painting in 3D coat ? )
    As you can see 3D coat retopo is very fast and easy and fun.
    I hope you have enjoyed that retopology overview
  2. YouGroove
    There are many way to make modular stuff.
    I just expose a simple basic one in Blender, it just covers modeling and preparing for FBX export.










    Mirror on Y the object

    Align to grid to be sure it is aligned on red axis with the other

















    For the UV part :
    Just download the Blender file before the merging , make UV seams on one half modular piece , this will be automatically made on all instances.
    I hope you enjoyed this other Blender tutorial
  3. YouGroove
    3D Coat is awesome to make tileable texture so easy.
    Let's start
    Choose tile texturing and some 512*512 texture

    Work with Top down camera view


    Fill tool with a yellow color and a metal style (specular high value)

    Now we will sculpt some crease line with low specular value to make some panels separation effect


    We will draw another color metal with te pixel precise pen tool : no normal map progressive slope but direct pixel slope


    We could keep texture clean and good.
    But for tutorial purpose we will make some dirt or used parts.
    We will apply a mask with low diffuse opacity, low specular and no normal map


    Stamping objects alpah allow you to go really crazy for detailling maps, here is some example :

    Another use of mask : paint with airbrush : color alpha low and specular low and no normal map

    Final texture

    Now we will use mask again to draw a pattern with some grunge pen to show damaged surface


    Orther method : draw clean patterns and degrade surface after



    I hope you enjoyed this painting tutorial.
  4. YouGroove
    A quick overview of some other painting tools.

    We will start with quick blocking colors and specular.

    Different specular values to make some sort of different metal styles
    For arms use some 20% specular


    We will paint pants :
    In texture window use the magic select tool

    Invert selection :

    You 'll see you will be able to paint on select texture area, even on 3D.
    This is very usefull to freeze some texture zones you want to paint in Texture view or 3D view
    Other tip: Select shadowed mode in texture editor to be bale to paint Diff/normal/spec simultaneously

    Usefull tool : spline tool to draw on 3D along the spline you draw

    Standard tool : Pen mask

    Another example of spline :


    Then just fill with same color and with normal map activated

    For simple texture and design 3D coat really shines
    The colors themes you choose will really define your characters.
    One that seems some occulus rift guy than anything else ....

    More neutral and darker colors for more theme soldier :


    I hope you enjoyed this quick 3D coat tips.
  5. YouGroove
    This tutorials will show the basics of painting diffuse/normal/specular maps in 3D coat.
    We will start with a new 3D character ( made in Sculptris also)

    So let's start
    Import model in 3D Coat for painting with basic color and baked normal map form 3D Coat :

    Colors testing and blocking :
    - select Layer color only
    - uncheck Specular and normal map channels , we will paint full color only

    As main character in TPS view i want to highlight the character from behind,
    so for color deisgn i will use bright colors

    You can test mixing two colors to see if they match :
    - a base color
    - with brush make a quick paint over with low opacity

    Normal map Quick clothes drawing :
    -Uncheck normal map channel
    -Draw some lines with pen and some 55% normal map height

    Draw smooth in lines sides :
    SHIFT + Draw with normal map checked channel

    Need more detail ?
    Draw thin lines this times on normal map channel only

    You can smooth only one side of the lines and keep a strong deep height on the other

    Other method :
    You can draw holes or creases : Draw Tool + CTRL Than smooth
    It's important also to smooth end and begin of line to make it blend smoothly with whole object.
    Now choose some mask for the pen.
    We will paint on normal map channel with a light density such as 5-10% to bring details on clothes
    The result with UV lwo on pants, is too strong

    Use airbrush and smooth the normal map :
    Draw + SHIFT

    Once it's ok, paint a darker color on some cavity of normal map to make volume more visible and add sense of depth

    Some clothes part i don't want like trousers fully light absorb material
    but some sort of composite one, that will shine lightly :
    -Choose a color
    -Block normal map channel
    -Unblock Specular and choose some 15% Value

    Same technique as red clotes parts :
    Draw on normal map + Smooth
    Practice : only experience will show you how to do it well enought
    The best would have been to sculpt in 3D the clothes details before baking as it is lot more precise and give better , direct result.

    Some green details :
    - high light reflection : draw diffuse and specular only with 100% specular

    The gloves are like trousers fully light absorption material.
    I want gloves to be more synthetic material style.
    If we paint directly specular the gloves will look more like plastic or metal than fiber clothes.
    To make it more synthetic and fiber :
    - Choose a detail mask
    - Choose some around 29% specularity
    - Choose a slighty brighter same color
    and paint on gloves

    Full Metallic boots:
    - choose 100% specular and some color
    - paint the boots

    We will paint some dirt or dust.
    - Choose lower specular like 12%
    - Choose some mask
    - Choose a darker color
    -Paint on creases, deep normal map parts and some other surfaces that could receive dirt or keep it

    Paint some SSAO, or cavity parts that would receive also lightly some dirt/Dust
    - Choose a darker color
    - PAint progressively with aribrush on color channel only

    We will paint more paint a layer of green painting degradation on metal.
    To look like the boots was green paint, but the paint got used and disappeared/used over time.
    - choose some green dark color and airbrush tool with some 80% opacity
    - Choose specular at 0%
    - choose a good mask
    And paint alternatively :
    -smaller radius pen on bigger areas
    -bigger radius pen on bigger areas

    One it's done you'll have shiny and less shiny parts with some old green paint that has been degraded over time.

    We will add some layer of rust/dirt
    - choose brown dark color
    - Normal map to some 25 % depth
    - 0% Specular
    Paint on surfaces and cavity to make look boots more dirty or rusted

    Paint main metal armor to full specular 100%

    Paint with a darker color on diffuse, on the clothes :
    some SSAO or light dirt/dust to avoid some clean separation between clothes and armor

    With specular 15% and a mask and two main color themes
    we will paint rust and dirt on some armor cavity parts using aribrush tool

    It works great when you need a realistic touch on metal

    Paint again these two colors with mask :
    mainly on joints and seams/creases/cavity parts of the armor

    Do same now on some surface parts :
    We want to show the character has travelled and been on terrain a lot

    Drawing scratches on metal :
    Choose some good pen , adjust it's size to smallest possible
    Choose :
    - 100% Specular
    - Almost full white color
    - 70-95 opacity
    Paint on polygon and normal map edges mainly

    It's done quick and not very precise, but it works.

    For the helmet we will go Iron man inspiration :
    I painted 3 materials colors and 3 specular settings :
    - 0% on dark color
    - 50% on red
    - 100% on yellow
    This ot have 3 different materials
    1 ) Using maks and like previously :
    - low specular like 10¨%
    - darker color
    Draw some dirt/dust with darker color on joints , creases
    And some planes surfaces

    Like previously :
    -Specular 100%
    -Almost white color
    -Smallest pen size
    Draw scratches on metal edges

    For the back pack :
    As synthetic material, we will paint some detail on normal map channel
    - choose same color
    - choose a mask
    - choose 5-7% normal map strenght
    - Choose some 27% Specular for metarial shinyness

    Again :
    -Darker color with Aribrush
    -Draw on small and big cavity areas some dirt/dust

    model review :
    It seems some parts use full simple color without color variation , good for cartoon style,
    but as i started some part to have some light realistic style i'll do same for these parts

    First : we will change red color, it don't match a lot finally for what i wanted
    -Choose Fill tool
    -Choose other color
    -Choose Specular for synthetic to 6% (over it wiil look too much shiny), it must shine but really lightely
    We will fill finally arms and lower clothess
    And paint on normal map cavity a darker green color with 0% specular to make color variation and highligh cavity

    Same for legs we will fill them with a draker color to keep homogenous darker colors lightening theme

    Pick green color and specular values

    Change green color to a greener one and fill side pockets

    Paint some shadows/Dirt
    Paint with 100% specular some metal lightening detail

    So it is done for now with some Mid cartoon/mid realistic painting.
    We would work some more like make darker the back pack to same tones as other colors, but well it's not for realistic game, so it's ok.


    I hope you enjoyed this 3D coat painting basics tutorial
  6. YouGroove
    Sculptris is free and very powerfull.
    I will show a complete character example, and will show main commands and some tips.
    The theme is some futurist military cartoon character a little inspired by that :

    Ok let's begin : )
    Making the torso : Draw on the sphere to make the shape
    ALT + Draw = draw holes
    **** + Draw = smooth
    Draw + Clay option = similar to Zbrush claytubes to draw planar stuff
    Draw + Alt + Clay option = draw planar cavity

    Next : Flatten + lock plane angle : to create some plane surfaces

    We will create the arms as separate objects :
    Choose : New Sphere
    Than : Add Object

    Use move tool and global setting to position new objects

    To de select all objects : CTRL + D
    To select one object : click on it

    Gloabal scaling

    Draw the arms rought shapes

    Draw + Smooth all around object

    Click on Wireframe view : to see wireframe
    The more you zoom when painting the more detailled will be the polygons

    Poly reduction tool : usefull ot reduce polys where needed
    Or when a detailled part is hard to smooth

    (Alt + Recude brush = increase detail polygons on surface)

    Sculptris wil be more performant hidden object you don't work on

    Inflate tool to make some small growing parts , growing uniform

    Add new sphere to make the head

    Draw , smooth, flatten tools to make some rought shape

    Pinch tool : It will make hard edges very good.

    1) Crease tool to make good Creases;
    2) Than Pinch tool to clean, refine creases
    You'll have great results using these tools one after the other.

    ALt + Crease tool to make hard edges on any surface

    Than pinch tool to make the hard edge very good

    Flatten + Lock plane to draw hard surfaces

    ALT + Draw + Clay option to draw planar holes quickly

    For the head : Add new object and begin to shape it

    CTRL + Draw = draw mask : Usefull to sculpt only the surface parts you want
    Here it as used to flatten only the parts i needed.

    Select second head part and adjust rotation using rotation tool

    Hidde other parts to have lot more faster sculpting (3D coat is not Zbrush)

    Some detail technique :
    Make hole : ALT + Draw + Clay

    Pinch tool around hole to make it look hard surface

    Draw + Clay option

    1) Flatten
    2 ) Flatten + Lock plane option

    Begin legs :
    add new sphere
    Flatten tool in distant zoom

    Draw the legs in a first rought pass

    Smooth + Flatten tool to shapeup the legs

    Add new sphere objects for boots

    Flatten + smooth to shape them as cylinders

    Second pass :
    Draw, smooth, flatten tools

    Belt making :
    Add nother sphere object , resize it, position it

    Flatten it all around and top and bottom

    Position it on character and flatten it all around
    (You can pinch edges also if needed)

    Side pockets making :
    1) another another sphere object
    2) Flatten , smooth it all around to make the shape you want

    Scale it , rotate it and position it on character :

    Making some torso shield part on surface :
    We could add another object , but the goal here is to show some usefull drawing techniques
    Draw your shape using mask

    Draw volume

    Begin to detail with crease tool
    Use smooth tool where surface is not regular than re apply crease tool

    Draw hard surface edges using :
    ALT + Crease tool

    Than smooth tool on irregular surfaces to make surface more planer
    (Flatten tool if needed also)
    + Pinch on hard edges
    + Pinch on crease parts

    Adding objects details :
    Same add new sphere and shape it up in distante view using flatten tool

    Adjust it's position, scaling , rotation in gloab mode

    Copy paste object is possible in sculptrisand usefull sometimes

    Before exporting character to obj file for retopo it's better to move some character parts around it in 3D space.
    This way you'll retopo more easy and when retopo is done , you have just to move different low poly parts near the character again.

    The cartoon military soldier is mainly done with some added details.

    You can sculpt lot more details everywhere in Sculptris, the techniques remaining almost the same as what i showed here, or you can import the character on Zbrush or 3D coat Voxels to go lot more further in sculpting details if you target more realistic style.
    Personnaly a fast and good workflow to make non detailled characters i use :
    - Character sculpt and detail in Sculptris
    - Retopo in 3D Coat
    - Paint Diff/Normal/Specular maps to add details and textures patterns
    Perhaps i'll make retopo and painting blog ?
    Last tip :
    I highly recommend a tablet for sculting, a mouse will never be as natural or fast.
    ( Even Wacom Bamboo basic ones are great at very small price)
    Ok , thats the end of Blog on that Sculptris tutorial.
    I hope you enjoyed it
  7. YouGroove
    A quick making of a 3Dcolumn made in 3D coat for my LE3 game.
    Why struggles with modeler when you can make hard surface models using 3D coat super easy Voxel modeling?
    1) Voxels : Some primitives than Tool : Add objects (with the great Tinker library)

    2) Retopology (pretty low poly and fast)

    3 ) Bake normal map To Low Poly

    4) Paint damage , details, specular, dirt :
    ( lof of masks and alpha in 3D coat and more in the Web )

    5) Once the model and textures has been exported to FBX, we can paint some Glow.
    Paint in texture editor the diffuse map full black , than in 3D view paint the Glowing parts, export texture and give it some "glowmap" name.

    In game result :

    As you can see no modeler, only one tool 3DCoat.
    I hope you enjoyed this overview of the workflow and how fast you can make modular stuff in 3D Coat.
  8. YouGroove
    An easy way of making curved tubes or pipes for your 3D assets models or for your level.






    Click images to Zoom





    Some example of use :
    Spice up 3D models

    Or bring curved tubes to your level

    I hope you enjoyed this tutorial
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