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importing 3ds object in world machine ?

Started by kanistra, December 24, 2011, 10:58:46 am

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basically i have a nice terrain created and eroded in worldmachine, problem is that i also have an imported 3ds file in my scene, it is a fallen idols model and i want to apply erosion on this object a swell. How can i do it ? How can i separately import 3ds file to worldmachine and apply erosion filter ? maybe i should import this 3ds file in Vue first, and then do something and save it as a TGA file ? I am little bit stuck at this point what would be the best way to accomplish that.


World Machine works with heightmaps which only have one height value for a specific point. So about the best you could do is convert your 3ds model into a heightmap and combine it with your world in WM. What I did (in Google SketchUp) was to setup an orthographic camera projection and export two images, a full-color image and another with the object textured in a white-to-black gradient. Then I made a macro that combines a world heightmap and colormap with the model heightmap and colormap I just made. Viola, the macro outputs the same world heightmap and colormap, just with the object scaled and placed on it.

I attached an example of a model heightmap and colormap to better see what I'm talking about. Some models will lose more data than others in the process.


That's a great workaround solution actually!

I do want to have a full mesh in / out system but I can't provide an ETA on it yet
-- Stephen Schmitt
- Creator of World Machine


Quote from: Remnant on January 04, 2012, 04:59:02 pm
That's a great workaround solution actually!

I do want to have a full mesh in / out system but I can't provide an ETA on it yet


At work (film industry) Im continually dealing with world scale environments from our previs dept. The geo is really nasty (crashing elements etc).
I need to work out a good solution to get that from maya in true world space (so looking scales of 100000-1000000 cm easily) to a heightmap presumingly using actual world space floating point map, then into world machine.

And ideally the out put would be:
1) lowish res clean quad mesh + extDsp height for the remaining details )seperate layers for things like rocks etc on top of the main terrain would be a bonus) + texture masks
2) nice tiling for this setup too to work with renderman
3) highest res possible mesh if needed to paint onto.

All this needs to be in worldspace so that when I re import everything back itno maya the transfroms/scale havent changed. (often I have to reworkout what height multiplier to use).

Remnant any ideas for solutions to this?



I highly recommend using xNormal to calculate the heights of the 3ds object instead of using a cyl mapping. xNormal is free, open source and uses 32bit floats internally to store the heightmap data, with 16bit export options. I find that using cylindrical mapping and a gradient texture loses too much detail.

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