Normal Mapping for Games

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  01 January 2007
Thanks guys for the quick reply. I've already downloaded Xnormal. I plan on using it on my next project instead of ATI's normal mapper, but because I started my current project with the ATI one I guess I'll just stick with it until I'm done. Thanks again.
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  03 March 2007
Well I was just wondering, I've read alot of these threads about Normal mapping and theirs alot of help but alot of them you need a PC computer becaus you need programs that run on a windows and I was just wondering If theirs a way to do it on a apple computer... or programs that do the same thing but on a mac
  03 March 2007
Thanks haha I never thought of adding mac lol.... I kept reading threw lots of forums instead to see what others use and It all had to do with people having windows... thanks again
  04 April 2007
Can anyone tell me why this keeps happening?...

Ridges keep appearing where it should be a smooth curve. Any help would be great
  04 April 2007
Depends on how you've mapped it and smoothing groups I think. Can you show the uvs and the cage if you're doing it in max?
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  04 April 2007
I have always noticed, depending on the program you are using, normal map projections dont like hard edges. If you try beveling your low res then generating the normal map, that may work. Then you just put your geometry back to the hard edge. That method has worked for me in the past.
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  04 April 2007
That's just adding more polys than necessary, and superfluous.

Snakeye, try making the entire area one smoothing group. Also, how small is that raised area in game? It looks like a small detail.

A good rule of thumb should be if it's smaller than one foot on screen, it should not need those extra polys. You should just use the normal map, and include those polys elsewhere where they'll be put to better use.

In fact, if that area is small the whole thing we see should be six triangles.
  04 April 2007
Make them all on the same smoothing group. It will get rid of that hard edge that is showing through your normal mapped low res geometry.

9 times out of 10 that will fix it.
  04 April 2007
It's definately a smooth group problem from what I've tried following all of your advice, but when I put the model on 1 smooth group the normal map ends up like this (ignore the red bits for now plz)...

It's definately getting there, but you can see there's a few errors around the mid section. Would this be anything to do with topology? Would creating a slightly higher poly model for generating the normal map, then using that map on an even lower poly model be sufficient?

Here's a screen shot of the low poly model...

Btw, I'm using 3D Max, not Maya. I just changed some of the UI colours.
  08 August 2007
Hello There!

My friend is working on a weapon model, and after he generates the normal map in XSI, he gets the same results as in the bove picture by Snakeye. There's some artifacts and flat surfaces are gradient shaded on the normal map. He started to tesselate the low poly weapon, by modifying the geomety to grid-like and beveling most edges. It helps to make a more accurate normal map. He plans to delete the extra detail after the normal map is made, and put back the normals on a lower poly weapon.

The only problem is, that this process is quite tedious. Basically You have to build a mid-poly weapon as well. Do you guys know of any better solution?

Thanx in advance!
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  08 August 2007
So how do you use normal maps on deformable meshs?
If I create a TBN data on the vertices of the 3D model. Will this data be usable for the model if it is deformed by bones? If not, how can you achieve normal mapping of a deformed mesh?
  08 August 2007
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