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Explore the world of modeling and texturing 3D game props and assets in Autodesk Maya. Author Adam Crespi provides strong technical modeling techniques, from blocking basic forms and leveraging simple parts and reusable textures, to simulating real-world detail like dirt, wear, and grain with UV maps and ambient occlusion. The course includes workflow and integration considerations such as planning UV space for projection, and also steps into Mudbox and Unity for further refinement.
In this video I'll take the pieces I have exported from Mudbox and bring them into Unity and see how this looks. I have exported my Normals back out, and I have also exported my colors, and I have applied them to my low poly object. When it came in it wanted to put the alpha channel from that TIFF into the transparency, so I have broken the connection. I have added in my normal maps, making sure they're set to Tangent Space Normals here in the Bump 2d node. I'm viewing it in the high-quality display, and it looks pretty good.
I can see some places where I might want to smooth out the Mudbox model right here on the corner, but it's a neat test. The paint is on, and I'm ready to get the glossiness into the alpha channel in Photoshop so it comes across to Unity correctly. For a low poly object, this is looking pretty nice. As always the normal map is not changing the silhouette, but it's also adding some characters to this barrier. I'll open up Photoshop and pull those maps in. Here in Photoshop I'll open up those two images pressing Ctrl+O and browsing over to my source images folder. Here's 07_08_Color_start and 07_08_Gloss_start.
I'll pull them open. What I have got here is transparent around the gloss. I may want to hit this with an additional piece of color or just leave it alone as there's nothing going on in that space right now. What I'll do is press Ctrl+A to Select All, Ctrl+C to Copy, and go over to the color image. Again, there's no backing color on it. So if I'm going to have any reduction in size or enlargement I may want to put a backing color behind this. For safety what I usually do is pick one of the colors in here, eyedroppering let's say the dirt, and filling in using the paint bucket on a new layer.
This way if there is any gap, it doesn't get a default white fill, but instead goes in the same grade that my dirt is. Now I'll go into the Channels. I'll make a new channel and paste in that specular into the alpha. I'll press Ctrl+D to deselect, and now I'm ready to save this out. I'll go back up to the RGBs and click on RGB. Then I'll go in Layers and make sure my top layer is active and choose File > Save As. I'm going to save this out without layers as a copy with an alpha channel calling it 07_08_Color_end.
I'm going to put this in my Unity folder in the assets in the textures folder I have created. Here is my Game Props unity project, and in there are assets. In the Textures is where I'll put that image and click Save. This way Unity will import it automatically. I'm going to make sure when I save this that I check Compression as None as I'd like to let Unity handle all the compression on this. I'll click OK, and now I'm going to go back to Maya and export out the FBX of that barrier. Here in Maya I'll select my barrier and choose File > Export Selection.
I have put a material on here called barrier so when Unity brings it in I can recognize it and put those maps in. I'll export out this selection. I'm going to put this in my Assets folder in my Unity project as well. I'll browse over to the Game Props Unity and into Assets. I'm going to name this 07_08_end. I'm making sure that I'm taking across my smoothing groups or hard and soft edges, and as usual with Unity converting my units to meters. I'll click Export Selection, and I'll open up Unity and bring this in.
Here in Unity I'm in my Game Props Unity project, and there is my file. As soon as I opened or refreshed Unity it came across nicely. I'm going to set the Scale at 1, and in this one I'm going to put a box collider on, so I won't check Generate Colliders. I'll scroll down and click Apply. This shape is nearly a box, and we don't really need to be able to ride up it unless we're dealing in a driving game. It's okay to use a box collider in minimize resources.
I'll pull this into the scene, dragging it into the hierarchy, and pressing F to focus on it. Here is that Box Collider. I'll choose Component > Physics > Box Collider. This is a little more economical in resources than using the mesh as a collider. In general we can't get too much closer, and we can't really tell the difference in 6 inches of movement here. Now I'll get the Materials on. In my materials it's brought in a material called Barrier. I need to bring in my textures which are already in the Textures folder.
I'll look down in my project, and because I deposited in there, Unity imports them in automatically. I'll pick the color and make sure it came in okay. It is a texture, and there is the size, 1024. That will work, although I may end up wanting to compress. I'll pick my material and change the Shader, dropping down under Diffuse, and making it a Bumped Specular. Now I can put in my color and its alpha as well as the normal map. I'll drag that color map in and put it on there, and there it is on the barrier, but it looks like I forgot to bring in my normal map.
I'll go copy that into the directory, and it should show up the next time I enter Unity. I have browsed into my sourceimages folder, and there is that normal map I forgot to bring over. I'll select it and press Ctrl+C. Remember, anything in the Unity project gets imported. So you may have directories outside of that where you keep working files or raw versions. I'll go back to my Unity project and into the Assets folder into the Textures folder, and I'll right-click and paste that in.
Now when I go back to Unity, it'll refresh and pull in that map form me. There it is, and I'll pick it and make sure under Texture Type it's tagged as a normal map. I'll uncheck Create from Grayscale, and I'm ready to use it. I'll click Apply, and now I'll bring it into that material, clicking on Barrier and then dragging it across. I have brought it in, and there is that object with its normal. I'll pull this down a little bit and get a controller in to see what this looks like. It looks pretty good as I spin around, although there aren't any lights in the scene yet.
To test, here's what I'll do. I'll choose GameObject > Create Other > Plane. I'll make a plane, hold V to snap, snap on the plane, register on a vertex, and snap down to the bottom of my barrier. I think just so I can see this really working, I'll duplicate it by pressing Ctrl+D and sliding it over. The duplicate gets a box collider as well, and I'll make one more of them putting it over here and rotating it around. We'll see if these colliders work if I can get around those.
I'll roll up my textures and go into the Standard Assets folder. I'm going to pick a first-person controller and drop it into my scene. I'll pull back and see where it landed. It's way off there in the distance. I think what I'll do is I'll delete that and instead of dropping it into the hierarchy, I'll zoom in and drop it right into my scene so it starts out in the right place. Here's the test to see if I did this in the right size as my barrier at 32 inches high is just under half the height of that controller.
So I know I'm in good shape size-wise. I'm going to put a light in, and then I'll play it and test it. I'll choose GameObject > Create Other, and I'm going to use a Directional Light like the sun. There is my light. I'll press W to move pull it up out of the way and rotate it over. I'll spin it and back off this intensity a little bit, and I'm going to turn on some Soft Shadows. I'll make them longer, and it looks pretty good. I'll test this out by pressing Play.
The first-person controller is automatically marked as the view to go to. Here I'm in the view, and there is my barriers. I can jump and see the top. I'm pressing the spacebar to do this and using W-A-S-D to navigate around. It looks like the box colliders worked, and I can pass between them. I haven't adjusted the shadow resolution which is why we're seeing some jaggedness down there, but as a quick test to the material it's working nicely. What we look for in our workflow is that things are fast and not only is it fast, but we can get some iterations going quickly. And what I'm doing here, aside from bringing it into Unity and playing around the barriers, is showing that there's many different ways to do this, and Mudbox is a terrific addition to your pipeline because we can view it and paint on it and sculpt it in Mudbox in 3D.
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