View Full Version : question regarding game texturing

01-07-2008, 04:30 AM
How do you make the most realistic textures for games? At one point i saw someone render out a dirt map and paint on that...if anyone knows what im talking about could you enlighten me a little on how to do it in Maya 8.5 and how would this work with a normal map?

Thanks in advance.

01-07-2008, 07:16 AM
It depends on what are you texturing.... for example if your making texture for environments, it
would probably be a good idea to use photo textures(however you would still have to manipulate those in photoshop to get a good result.)
On characters I mostly see people handpainting textures(Photos can be used though)....
Just remember the final product is what matters no matter how texture is made and PS
is your friend.
Hope that helps

01-07-2008, 03:41 PM
Big companies that need to ship out games fast generally use pictures on most things...since they have libraries of high-res textures of faces, walls, ground, etc. they can just use those and get things done fast. Sure, you can texture something by hand, but you have to be good to do it well and it'll still take you a while to get realistic skin, hair and other things.

I saw the dirt map thing for Max,not Maya, but I believe it's a plugin you need to buy and it basically renders out a diffuse map with the parts that stick out lighter and the parts that stick in darker (plus it does other things)...so that helps with the texturing in Photoshop since you can see how all the geometry flows and you don't need to manually paint in lighting.

01-07-2008, 03:49 PM
Almost all the texturing we do starts of with photographs..wether they are reference to base a handpainted texture on or are manipulated ( to tile etc. ) and painted over.
Personally, I prefer to hand paint environment textures ( using photos as a ref point ).
That way it is easier to keep control of the colours and feel of them all across an environment, particularly if you have a set pallete ( or is it palette ? ) to work to.
Dirt maps and stuff ( AO etc. ) I tend to do by hand as well, and normal maps ( on environment objetcs ) because they tend to be quite inorganic on environment objects ( I paint them in greyscale and run them through the photoshop nVidia plugin ).
I don't have a massive ammount of exp. doing character stuff, but my mate here at FSG tends to start with photos for the textures ( heads especially ) and fiddle with them in Photoshop ( making them fit across the UVs without stretching, and removing shadows from under the eyes and so on ). He also renders out ambient occlusion maps, either to use as a seperate pass or to 'bake' into the diffuse map... ( i.e. stick it on a layer in photoshop.. )

Hope that helps a bit....

01-07-2008, 04:55 PM
Processes vary wildly depending on the type of work you're doing.

At work I will build a high poly, build a low poly, bake out an Ambient Occlusion map, Normal Map, and Color Mask. I'll then use a combination of hand painting and photomanipulation to make my diffuse, painting/photosourcing additional normal information to correspond with the diffuse. Then I'll take the diffuse group and duplicate it, and then work each layer in the diffuse group to make a proper spec map that matches each material in this diffuse. I use this process for weapons, vehicles, and a few environment props at work.

Knowing how to handpaint materials is vital, in my opinion, because when you can do it correctly it means you understand the underlying material properties, and from there you can use photosourcing much more accurately.

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01-07-2008, 04:55 PM
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