Urgent response needed! (AO multiplication!) :hmm:

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  02 February 2013
Urgent response needed! (AO multiplication!) :hmm:

OK so I'm a university student in my final year and I've been asked by a major games company to create a little scene in 10 days which I have and they liked! Now they've asked me to texture it they said "No complex shaders" and "use AO in the textures"... Not wanting to sound stupid or unknowedgable (LOL) I said "sure!"

I am texturing using Mudbox and I know how to extract an AO pass/map, BUT... When talking about it, they said "Just multiply it"... How is AO usually done in games textures? Should I literally just multiply the pass on the texture in photoshop/mudbox and just export a flattened colour/diffuse map, or is this done with some kind of layered shader?

I have everything set up and ready to go but they are expecting the textures tomorrow night at thelatest so the sooner I know which route to take, the better!

Thank you so much in advance to anyone who can help
  02 February 2013
Sounds like they basically want you to lay the AO map on top of your color texture in photoshop and change blend mode to multiply. It really is that simple :O
  02 February 2013
Originally Posted by Panupat: Sounds like they basically want you to lay the AO map on top of your color texture in photoshop and change blend mode to multiply. It really is that simple :O

Ok thankyou; I'll let a few more responses roll in to confirm but thats what I thought. I also noticed there is an ambient attribute in lamber/binn etc... do you think they would prefer that over the method you just mentioned?
  02 February 2013
Can somebody else confirm this? This is a big deal for me and need to get this right
  02 February 2013
I don't do games, but I know a lot of people in games and they usually just multiply the occlusion into the texture (even we do that in full cg feature all the time).
Of course this might apply to non moving objects only and then only self occlusion.
And or for still renders
  02 February 2013
Not sure if it would be considered an "Advanced Shader" but you can just use a multiply node to mult a color map by an AO Texture Node...or just stick the AO in the color gain of your file texture. OR plug it into the diffuse slot of your shader...So many options...all of them work in some situations.
No idea what the specifics of exactly what they are looking for.
But I will also give you confirmation that you can just mult it in Photoshop.
Just don't make it look grimey and grey...use the AO to give it depth. Maybe try not just a using black and white AO.

Chances are they just want you to make something that looks awesome...and as long as you don't do anything wacky they will show you the way they need it done in their pipeline once you are hired.

I have a hunch none of what I'm saying will help you at all...I am just confusing the issue more.
Good luck!
  02 February 2013
Sometimes multiplying the AO pass looks a bit dirty. I would recommend you to use your AO pass as a mask on a curves/levels adjustment layer instead - and change the color information in each pixel instead of just multiplying with black/grayscale. This will give you a lot more control (i.e tinting the AO slightly blue etc) and just overall look nicer.

- Colin
  02 February 2013
I'm pretty sure they just want you to make the textures look good. Multiplying the AO is just a suggestion. AO is often multiplied over the diffuse in PS as a good base and then you hand paint on top of that.

Here is a little tutorial that talks about using AO in textures for shadows and also as a mask like previously mentioned.


  02 February 2013
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