XSI Foundation for games?

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  10 October 2004
XSI Foundation for games?

Hi, I tried posting this 3 times already.. sorry but Im new here and it doesnt seem my posts are showing up so.. here goes again:


I recently downloaded the XSI foundation demo. I would like to know if anyone is using this software to develop games?

If so I have some questions.... maybe you can help:


1) How do you like the workflow in XSI foundation for developing characters with animations, architecture, etc...

2) This one is for intermediate or advance xsi users, How long does it take you on average to make a low poly animated character? 1 day? 2? 3 or more?

3) How do you deal with the limited export options? The only relevant export I see is .obj. In the demo.. I tried exporting .obj with bones and animations, however when importing the .obj file into other programs, the bone and animation information was lost. I maybe doing something wrong.

4) Is there a plugin to export .3ds, .x, or other game related formats? Bone/animation information is a must for me.

Perhaps you can shed some light on these questions.

Thanks,

Lucid
 
  10 October 2004
Workflow is great.

The character time, it really depends on the individual and the complexity of animation needed, how many people involved etc...

If its a studio using XSI, they will have a pipeline which will directly support .xsi file formats, otherwise theres always 3rd party apps that can export\import into a miriad of file types (deep exploration)
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  10 October 2004
hey
Character workflow is easily one of the best. The rigging and animation tools are top notch.
something else i find top notch for games are:
the UVing tools
the rendermap workflow (baking to texture, including normalmaps)
Baking to vertex (infinitly better than max)
Vertex painting in general
Rendertree and Real time shaders.
no plugins required, all built in.

Theoretically, your programmers could make the shaders from your game engine into nodes that can be loaded up in the rendertree, where the artists would be able to see exactly what the end result would look like.
As for exporting, dotxsi format is really good. It exports pretty much everything, in either binary or ascii. Any programmer can easily take what he wants from the ascii.

Frankly, having good experience with both max and xsi, i dont know why games companies would pick max over xsi. especially with the new price tag. Unless you are working on a sequel and all your ressources are max or you are using game engine technology that is dependent on max, i dont see a reason.
 
  10 October 2004
isn't half life 2 made with xsi? A top rated game with high end graphics.
 
  10 October 2004
1) I mostly only animate but I have modeled and rigged and I enjoyed xsi the most out of all of the programs I've used in the past.

2) I don't model much like I said but it takes me pretty much the same amount of time to model in every program give or take a few minutes.

3) Never exported anything really.

4) I know theres a .3ds importer but not sure about exporting. Look around in netview and see whats out there.


By the way you can check out softimage.com and see the games reel they have up.
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  10 October 2004
Hey, Thanks for the info!

Does anyone know why the .obj format is not exporting bones/animation information?

I tried reading the .obj with a few programs, Milkshape, GameSpace, UltimatUnwrap3d and none of them have Bones (and without bones, no animation).

Is there anyone using Blitz3d, DarkBasic, Torque, Game Studio? If so, how are you handling export with xsi?

Also does anyone know where to get a .x exporter for XSI? I can only find an importer. The thing I do not get is why the export options are so limited. In most software I have used, there are quite a bit of export options. I guess XSI wants the user to handle this on his/her own? Its difficult for a person without knowledge of C++.

Thanks in advance!
 
  10 October 2004
Originally Posted by lucid_polygon: Hey, Thanks for the info!

Does anyone know why the .obj format is not exporting bones/animation information?



The wavefront obj format does not support bones or animation. http://www.dcs.ed.ac.uk/home/mxr/gfx/3d/OBJ.spec
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  10 October 2004
Ive had a lot of dialogue with XSI reps over last 2 days, and so far they cant explain why other export options arent available. I find it really strange to have One useful export option (theirs) for XSI. I cant believe a powerful program lacks the export functionality that many free or $20 programs have.

The only thing stopping me from purchasing XSI is the export. Hopefully someone here could shed light on ways around this limitation ( I know its not limited for people who can tie in dotXSI to their engine).

I tried the above suggested "deep explorer" demo ... and tried to import xsi, but again, I do not see any bone information.

Hope all of this doesnt sound too nagging, but I really would like to buy XSI Foundation and My sole intention is to make low poly models for games with it. I hear the animation is very good, so combined with good poly tools + animation... it seems like a great deal for the money.
 
  10 October 2004
I wish torque suported the xsi format, could anyone write a plugin please !! I know im not the only one !! come on
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  10 October 2004
Hey lucid, why dont you explain your pipeline. because if you have programmers, the difference to them between .ase and .xsi is extremely minimal.

.obj is the object format of maya. It exports objects thats it. No bones or anim. dotxsi greatly outperforms .obj.

Maybe we can help you better if we understand what you are trying to do. ie what engine are you using, what type of game it is, is it an original game, a sequel or a mod?...etc
 
  10 October 2004
Lucid,

Look into the following:

http://www.softimage.com/xsinet/ Converters Tab

and

http://www.softimage.com/products/pipeline/

As Zen mentioned a better understanding of your currently pipeline would help.

Cheers!

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  10 October 2004
I use XSI in game development. Have been for several years now.

We have our own exporters. So exporting is not a problem. You do no have to use dotXSI to export, but if you are going from scratch then dotXSI is a good system and one I would recommend.

As for workflow, I have not used Maya, but XSI beats the pants off of MAX any day. Fast stable and robust.

Been very happy with XSI.

Vmpre
 
  10 October 2004
There are both .x import and export plugins available off softimage.com, through the netview.
 
  10 October 2004
Thanks all for the response! I finally was able to get some different export options.


Im curious why more game developers didnt respond to the post?
Are there not many people using XSI for games?
Also, does anyone know any commercial games using XSI?

Last edited by lucid_polygon : 10 October 2004 at 07:23 AM.
 
  10 October 2004
they most be busy making games.....dont you think so?
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