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Collection of recommendations for model creation and level design

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I think, its critical to have a guidline or number of tips and tricks about model creation.

We are still having extremely low fps even in editor (we are not taking in account code for now) in such a simple scene. Final scene shoud be more times larger, and i'm really afraid of fps in the future. For now, i haven't any info of what we are doing wrong from official support (Metatron, warm thanks for your help).

 

Project lead is in desperate and panic, now he is crying about changing engine, which means great loses for our little team in both code and assets.

 

It would be great to have a handbook or blog (like this ) with number of recommendations or/and users experience.

 

Ideally, there should be a number of documents, describing process of model creation.

http://udn.epicgames.com/Three/ContentHome.html

http://udn.epicgames.com/Three/TextureArtistHome.html

http://udn.epicgames.com/Three/CharacterArtistHome.html

It would be great for all community, not only for us, i think.

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It's hard to say what you're doing wrong, without having access to the assets.

You could do various things to test what assets are causing the low fps, for example by hiding everything, and then unhiding each asset individually in the game.

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There is no formula for making models that will result in optimal rendering. There's a lot of ways a scene can be made slow. Generally, you want to keep your entity count to a minimum, so eliminate any entity hierarchy from your models unless it is needed.

 

Turn full statistics on in the editor and post screenshots. I tried to run your executable, but it won't launch.

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I send you password and link.

 

I'm talking about manual of creation models from scratch. For example "Here we are crated cube. Next we are attaching material to it. Its important to use only one material, because engine works fine with small number of materials".

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Fewer materials is better. Fewer polygons is better. Lower resolution textures are better. Fewer entities are better.

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I'll show you real example:

X-ray works fine with "a lot of materials per model"

Gamebryo works bad with "a lot of materials per model"

[sarcasm]

Leadwerks works bad with "a lot of materials per model, a lot of polygons per model,and a lot of models"

[/sarcasm]

 

Look at the link, please.

http://udn.epicgames.com/Three/ContentBlog.html

There are experience of real people, with solutions and recommendations

 

PS: btw, Josh, you have a password to scene, you can watch it in Editor.

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I don't have a password for your package.

 

I don't have the resources to write a blog about how to use 3ds max. Most people don't even use that program.

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I'll show you real example:

X-ray works fine with "a lot of materials per model"

Gamebryo works bad with "a lot of materials per model"

[sarcasm]

Leadwerks works bad with "a lot of materials per model, a lot of polygons per model,and a lot of models"

[/sarcasm]

 

Look at the link, please.

http://udn.epicgames.com/Three/ContentBlog.html

There are experience of real people, with solutions and recommendations

 

PS: btw, Josh, you have a password to scene, you can watch it in Editor.

 

You have to understand that Leadwerks is still fairly new, at least in terms of community size and age. The communities for most of Leadwerks's competing engines are substantially larger, and with that comes more people writing these little blog posts and tutorials with all these little gotcha's and tips. For all intents and purposes, we're all still early adopters and have to figure these things out on our own.

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Yeah,thats what i'm asking for - to start collecting information somewhere.

 

User have a problem (for example, textures problem) - he writes to speshial forum chapter and got answer.

Next time another user with the same problem knows where to look.

 

Thats for artists, for programmers i started to collect info in LeaFaq

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Aren't we already collecting problems and solutions in special forum sections? I'm sensing that you want to turn this forum in some sort of Stack Overflow for Leadwerks but I think the only difference is in the presentation. Your FAQ is a great initiative but it is only a matter of time before it gets to large and we are going to need a search function just for that one thread :)

 

People should probably use the search function more often. Although you can't really blame the trail users, not having access to the sub forums and all.

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Hey Vetal. Here is one that likes your idea, so thumbs up for you. :) Searching forums are really not efficient and absolutely no joy.

 

Fewer materials is better. Fewer polygons is better. Lower resolution textures are better. Fewer entities are better.

This answer is of course true, but I think its a bit blunt reply.

 

And all others. Here is someone that actually is trying to compensate the lack of good advice's in one place and not spread around hundreds of threads, and you sound that he is making something wrong. Can't understand that at all. :o

 

Just my humble opinion, right or wrong.

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Its a good idea I think to have a kind of codebase where people can find stuff without having to search thru old threads.

documentation has allways been a problem with todays software, There never seems to be time to do it right.

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What you're complaining about is the size of the Leadwerks community and the number of people writing documentation. I do not have any control over that at this time and can't provide that. I could lie and say "sure, I will think about doing that" but I don't have time and it's not going to happen any time soon. I try to stick to what I can do a good job of, and build off of that. Writing tutorials about 3ds max is beyond the scope of what I provide.

 

So far, you have sent me an executable that won't launch, a password-protected zip file with no password, and another corrupted zip file. I'll help you identify where your bottlenecks are, but you need to give me something to look at on my machine.

 

Some of the issues you point out are why I eventually want to have a Leadwerks modeling program, so we can have control of the entire art pipeline. As it is, writing documentation for 3ds max would only assist a fraction of our users.

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Yes. Thats true. Josh wont be able to help unless he get a running example. Perhap you should add some instructions on how to use your files. I work giving software support each day andknow that problem. Without files its impossible to give any support and the time for guessing is not there.

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I do not understand the problem. It is common knowledge that you can go overboard in any engine on models whether it be poly,textures,materials. As a whole there is not a lot of up to date info for game art anywhere. I think Roland was the one that posted this link a while ago and this should be used as a guide for game modeling. But remember, even large studio's have to do a bunch of testing to figure out what they can cram on a screen.

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//Your FAQ is a great initiative but it is only a matter of time before it gets to large and we are going to need a search function just for that one thread

Totally agreed. That why i write an idea about creation separate subforum for nice code solutions.

 

//Without files its impossible to give any support and the time for guessing is not there.

As i already said, i provided speshial edition with opened models for everybody who tried help me.

 

 

Josh, dont be so boooring :) I dont have anything against you. The main thing that i want bring to you is that you just should think about stimulation for document creation if you havent time for that. I think,community can provide nice tutorials ( prooflink ).

 

Maybe you should just create separate forum thread exactly for solving problems with modelling like mine, and community will create some videos or something.

 

Another idea is to make a payment for each nice tutorial. Create some cathegories for tutorial (this ones are great ) and if user's tutorial is nice, you pay him 5$, lets say. That would stimulate community great.

One more idea is to make tutorial contest each week(mounth) with some winners and prizes.

 

 

 

Example: i have a problem with low fps now. I think, we'll find solution (lets say, models have too many materials). So we write that to a sertain place and any other community member, who will face the same problem will know where to look. As we would have some solutions, thats a nice basefor tutorials.

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It seems your DayNight script is causing the most FPS slowdown, at some points it eats 50% of your FPS. You are moving the sun in each frame, although there is no need to move it in each frame, since it moves so little per frame that there is no visual difference. Also moving the sun in each frame makes the shadows flicker which looks ugly. You should make it so that the sun moves only once per minute, or every 3600 frame. And I think in your code you also update a lot of things in each frame, although you should use timers and update them much less frequently than in each frame.

 

There's nothing wrong with the models, textures, lights, emitters, and coronas, they don't eat much FPS at all. I get like 80-130 FPS in Editor with a 8800 GTS. It's only your bad code which eats all FPS :)

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Great post Metatron. You actually came up with something useful instead of a bunch of words like me :-)

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..every engine i know, has a limitation related to polys, materials, textures...so do LE..however..I just have no idea how come you having such low FPS results, and i suspect, as a one of the users whos really pushing it to the edge ( i believe) , that you doing something real bad with your code/shaders..I dont know number of materials/textures you using, or size of level and number of polys you use but for instance, one of my heaviest levels has approx 290-340K polys, it has about 39 different materials and having about 28 characters moving around..all that with corresponding AI and stuff, running at 22-25 FPS at 7600GT card (6-7 years old card?) .. I wish i could help , but some access to your data is a must in order to provide proper input..

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Sorry for the fierceness of my earlier posts, I've been very irritable lately due to some technical challenges.

 

I'm more inclined to do this kind of thing for the Leadwerks3D documentation, because it's planned to last for a long time.

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Well Metatron seems to have summed up what most likely the problem is.... However,

 

As for models there isn't really much to it and you probably already know it:

-lower poly = faster

-lower texture size = faster

-fewer entities = faster

-fewer seams in your UV unwraping (a lot of people don't tend to know this one. The more seams you have... the more vertices you have in you UV's = more data = more processing time..)

 

This goes for any engine or 3D application. Yes one may handle more of x type but the above four still holds true.

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You should make it so that the sun moves only once per minute, or every 3600 frame.

 

Nah, right first time... Once per 60000 milliseconds... That's constant, frame rate isn't...

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