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Phodex Games

Import models with no hierarchy

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Hi,

with the current version of the fbx importer of Leadwerks all of my models, even those with no hierarchy create a single one. This causes my model to consist out of two entities if I place them in my scene. Is there a way beside collapsing them so directly have them merged as one object. I tried this with the default Blender cube to test it out. With the old importer I did not have this problem I think.

This is how it looks after import

image.png.5fcb0dcf7b61db828a0c296009db1830.png

and results in 2 entitys for a single object model:

image.png.44a40401a71d6046c7c7d3007b642e74.png

This is how it looks after collapse

image.png.6089a41a2f21a66f33170a8655c2a4cd.png

I think collapsing all models would be a completely unnessecary workstep... Hope there is a solution

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If that is the hierarchy your model contains, then that is what is imported.

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5 hours ago, Josh said:

f that is the hierarchy your model contains, then that is what is imported

The model has no hierarchy in Blender, but in Leadwerks the mesh gets attached to the STATIC_MESH object which when I place it in the scene results in an empty object which has the model as a child. I did not have this behavior in the past...

5 hours ago, SpiderPig said:

I found this was how blender exported fbx objects

I could try out if another 3D program has the same result. I though there maybe a setting in blender to make leadwerks recognize it as a single object with no hierarchy.

5 hours ago, SpiderPig said:

This problem is gone if you use the leadwerks mdl exporter for blender

I was not happy with the results of the exporter plugin. It always caused trouble with animations.

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Have you tried reimporting the model in Blender to see if the added hierarchy shows up?

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Yeah I just tried. If I import it to Blender its just the cube. What I did is just start Blender add a cube and export it. So there should not be any hierarchy...

 

image.thumb.png.9bad3047f8d546c80231e8a3df6ca413.png

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"Current" means the converter that is currently on the beta branch of Leadwerks?

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I think we may add GLTF support in 4.6, which would be easier for me to manage. I've literally spend thousands of dollars supporting FBX.

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7 hours ago, Josh said:

I think we may add GLTF support

Although FBX is industry standard I am not a fan of it, as it is locked behind Autodesks paywall. It also does not work well with Blender which most Indies use I guess.

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glTF 2.0 is pretty darned robust. I love using it (where I can). FBX is fickle and there are a zillion versions of it. Often, when FBX fails, one of the first questions asked is, "Which version of FBX are you exporting to?" Ugh!

Hey! At least you're not forcing us to use .x like another engine I know about. ;)

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Just as long as you keep some other format import options available other than this random GTFO format that until posted here most of us have never heard of - including yourself.

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glTF is on v2.0. So, while it's not exactly new, v2.0 is taking off like wildfire. Unreal and Unity now support glTF import (though I think Unreal's support is experimental at this point, though they are planning full implementation soon). MODO, a 3D modeler by Foundry, exports both glTF and glB (the version of glTF for posting live 3D content to Facebook and other places). Substance Painter exports glTF natively. Ultimate Unwrap 3D just added glTF to their formats in their last release. I believe that 3D Coat supports glTF export as well. There are glTF exporters for Blender (by Khronos, who makes glTF) and for Max, Maya, and just about everyone else via the BabylonJS plugin. What this means is that, even now, exporting from just about any modern 3D tool to glTF is possible.

glTF is doing what .dae (Collada) was not able to do ... become a true, universal 3D format exchange. It's powerful in that an entire scene (geometry, materials - including full PBR support, animations, and more) can be exported in one shot. Of course, you can just export a model, too, if that's all you need. 

Best of all, it's free and open. 

If you've not heard of glTF, then it's a great idea to become familiar with it.

So, yeah, I know a little about glTF. I've been using it for several months now on a project getting assets out of MODO (and now Blender) and into the Godot engine. 

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Blender exporter:
https://github.com/KhronosGroup/glTF-Blender-Exporter

GLTF is what Collada should have been. It even has built-in support in Windows 10. If you select a model file it is shown in the preview pane.

So we have this new option, and at the same time I don't have the source for the FBX converter, because it uses a lot of Unwrap3D's code, and the developer doesn't really want to update the converter anymore even when I give him money.

I would not ever drop FBX support but maybe it's best to focus on GLTF in the future. The files are relatively simple to load, so if a small change is needed I can make it, whereas FBX relies on Autodesk's nightmare SDK:
http://docs.autodesk.com/FBX/2014/ENU/FBX-SDK-Documentation/

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10 minutes ago, Josh said:

So we have this new option, and at the same time I don't have the source for the FBX converter, because it uses a lot of Unwrap3D's code, and the developer doesn't really want to update the converter anymore even when I give him money.

I would not ever drop FBX support but maybe it's best to focus on GLTF in the future. The files are relatively simple to load, so if a small change is needed I can make it, whereas FBX relies on Autodesk's nightmare SDK:
http://docs.autodesk.com/FBX/2014/ENU/FBX-SDK-Documentation/

ooph - you don't have the source! that blows donkeys.

Great that you are looking into new and exciting things - no complaints here about that. I just wasn't looking forward to having a decades worth of a models and textures asset catalog basically become useless in LE unless I convert it over to this gtfo format. 

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2 minutes ago, macklebee said:

I just wasn't looking forward to having a decades worth of a models and textures asset catalog basically become useless in LE unless I convert it over to this gtfo format. 

That shouldn't be a worry for you, thankfully. As I pointed out above, just about every modeling program out there supports it. A quick Google search shows that there are some apps for converting to glTF (i.e. import your FBX into the app, spit out glTF). So, even if glTF were to become the only format that Leadwerks were to use (and Josh as stated this won't be the case), then there would be ways to convert your models over.

Best of all, glTF is modern, so it supports PBR materials and the like ... straight from your modeling/texturing app (MODO, Substance Painter, etc.). So, once we get Turbo, we can drop our fully PBR models right into it via glTF. glTF should ultimately make things easier on us 3D content creators. And from what I've been hearing from Josh, it should make life easier for him, too. ;)

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jeez dude... i hope they are paying you for this... :D I get it - you are a fan of this new format. The conversation was directed at Josh and he answered exactly what I wanted to hear. It's all good. We are both getting what we want.:P

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Sorry, man. I was trying to help. I don't get the angst, actually. I was just trying to let you know that there will be ways to get your models into whatever format you need for Leadwerks. In any case, it's all good ... 

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16 minutes ago, Argent Arts said:

Sorry, man. I was trying to help. I don't get the angst, actually. I was just trying to let you know that there will be ways to get your models into whatever format you need for Leadwerks. In any case, it's all good ... 

Yeah, man I know that you can convert models from one format to the other. I get it. I've done it. I will do it again in the future. The angst is not wanting to spend the enormous amount of time trying to convert a decades worth of files over to this format, if Josh decided to only support this format. Since Josh has stated he will be supporting other formats at least for the time being, I am satisfied. As it stands right now, essentially 90% of my assets are automatically accepted by LE by just simply starting the editor - that alone is an enormous benefit to any user.

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7 hours ago, macklebee said:

The angst is not wanting to spend the enormous amount of time trying to convert a decades worth of files over to this format

I have all of my models in a Blender scene, where with the right plugin you can batch export them. This makes them basically available in any format at any time. With one click I can export hundreds and thousands of 3D Models directly into the Leadwerks Project. Sure it can take some time to place all your models in a Blender scene, but thats what a batch importer is for :D. Mabye this helps you. 

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Or you know, I don't have to do anything because Josh is for the time being supporting other formats... :huh:

 

and honestly, that doesn't sound very feasible at all. Trying to navigate a scene with hundreds or thousands of models to determine what to export, not to mention it doesn't sound very practical from a memory / file size standpoint, but to each his own. Still it would be time consuming endeavor to setup which was why I asked Josh about supporting other formats and he said he was going to... 

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The key word he used is "batch". The entire process, if it were needed, could be automated. But, hey, people were just trying to help you and offer alternatives just in case, not that you needed it. It's called being friendly. ;)

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7 hours ago, Argent Arts said:

The key word he used is "batch". The entire process, if it were needed, could be automated. But, hey, people were just trying to help you and offer alternatives just in case, not that you needed it. It's called being friendly. ;)

Thanks - I didn't know what the word "batch" meant!  jeebus... That's fine and dandy - and if it comes to it, it's definitely something that i will try even though I think I would look for some commandline batch converter instead of trying to load thousands of assets into a blender scene. :blink: 

And speaking of key words, you are missing the key point repeated in all my posts: The only concern was having to spend a lot of time converting assets that currently work in LE to another format to work in the newer version of LE - not that I didn't know how to do conversions. And Josh answered exactly what I had hoped. That's all that I needed to hear. No alternatives were requested and none needed at the moment, but thank you.

But let's point out that all I requested was that some other format still be provided due to not wanting to spend time doing conversions (been there and done that) and then you decided to give a dissertation or sales pitch for this format when it wasn't requested or required. I have been playing around with game engines and 3d models for at least a couple of years, so I don't need an explanation that models can be converted from format to format. But thank you for your input.:P

But knowing Josh, I wouldn't be surprised to see him make this upcoming gtfo format be obtainable by auto-conversion when the editor is opened. Since you are relatively new here, I will share a little Leadwerks history with you. One of the biggest hurdles new people had when first using LE2 was getting assets converted properly over. We had several commandline model converters for OBJ, FBX, 3DW, DAE, (and UU3D's converter), commandline texture converters for TGA and DDS, and a commandline converter for creating physic bodies, PHY. Josh finally fixed this by narrowing down his allowable formats and by automating the conversion process when the editor is opened. The amount of newbie posts about conversion questions/problems was halved immediately due to this, so I suspect something similar will be implemented or we will be reliving LE2 all over again. While you think this new format is hot and you want to date it, the simple fact is that new people (and old people) will complain about having to use a 3rd party software to get their models into LE. That was one of the old complaints about having to use UU3D or having to use blender for the GMF export. FBX is a hot mess but unfortunately its the most common format available. Until such time that the gtfo format becomes more common, considerations should be made for the old standards.

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Wow, macklebee, you are one hostile dude who, while claiming everyone is missing they key point, missed key points. Pot, meet kettle. It's simple. It's not that me or Phodex Games missed your key point about Josh simply ADDING glTF alongside FBX import to Leadwerks, we were simply providing information to OTHER things you had said, concerns you had brought up. It was honestly trying to be helpful and instead of either letting it go or saying thanks, you decided to be an *** about it. Nice.

Quote

I have been playing around with game engines and 3d models for at least a couple of years, so I don't need an explanation that models can be converted from format to format. But thank you for your input.

Well, a couple of years now, is it? Nice. It'll take some time for you to catch up to me on that regard ... but no worries. I was developing graphics for games and real-time simulations for businesses back when character models could only have 800+ polygons. If I am touting glTF, there's a damn good reason for it. And since Josh seems to be about as enamored with glTF as I am, there must be a reason for that as well. But, hey, you've had a "couple of years" at this. What the hell do I know, right? ;) 

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Macklebee is being awfully persnickety today, but he’s really a great guy, and gives a lot of helpful answers in the forum.

I love you all. Please be good. ;)

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