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Discuss artwork in all of its forms here, from level design to GUI button themes. New MODs planning, work-in-progress and other samples are welcome in this forum as well.
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Thrawn
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Post by Thrawn » 2005-02-25, 14:47

Yeah, but you can see that this one isnt a good texture. I have to work on it, its not seemless at the moment. But yes, it looks quite different with the normal map!

The concrete texture looks good! But I would only use it for brushes with half the size!
Last edited by Thrawn on 2005-02-25, 14:53, edited 1 time in total.
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Carsten
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Post by Carsten » 2005-02-25, 14:50

KillerKind wrote:I am using the HL2 height2normal.exe program. It is very easy to use. I think that Carsten should have a good look at this program. I believe the Ca3D TextureViewer is supposed to have something similar, but I can not get it to function.
The upcoming MatSys will be able to deal with height-maps directly, i.e. turn them into normal-maps internally. No need for height2normal.exe as a separate program.
This part is even finished yet, and works very well already.
The MatSys can also combine several height- and normal-maps if that is desired (e.g. use normal-maps for technical details, and height-maps for small bumps and scratches on a single texture).
Amazing difference!
Indeed. :)
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Kai
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Post by Kai » 2005-02-25, 15:38

I must say that it is very important for technical surfaces to use geometric-based normalmaps.

Creating normalmaps with a 2d converter is okay for high frequent surfaces (small, few pixel based bumps) but really lacks on low frequent surfaces due to the fact that highmaps (greyscaled bumpmaps) only offers 256 values, and no real control over angle or sharpness of a normalmap (which is one of the benefits of nmaps)

And not all surfaces need a nmap, sometimes a plain texture looks very good as it is ^^
Thats also why the matsys is very powerful, because you can enable/disable slots to create many variations of a material, using only a few textures :)
The MatSys can also combine several height- and normal-maps if that is desired (e.g. use normal-maps for technical details, and height-maps for small bumps and scratches on a single texture).
Thats a nice method ID Software used in D3...
Be careful with those terms: A "highmap" is technical the same like a bumpmap (a greyscaled image) but used for different purpose !!
The "highmap" is used to move geometry (vertices) on a surface while a "bumpmap" only works for the lightvector
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Carsten
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Post by Carsten » 2005-02-25, 17:03

Mhhh. Imho, the term "bumpmap" should not exist at all.
A heightmap describes relative heights (0 the lowest and 1.0 (or 255) the highest).

Wether a heightmap is used for displacement-mapping or bump-mapping (this term should exist) is an entirely different matter.

However, that is just my personal view of things - I really don't know how others define or think of these terms.
Maybe there is no common convenience at all(?). :oops: :cheesy:
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Shadow
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Post by Shadow » 2005-02-26, 01:00

lol maybe im just dumb but whats the best way to get a heightmap from a photo texture then? just turn it grayscale?
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Post by KillerKind » 2005-02-26, 02:09

As Stormstrooper's textures are not really "technical surfaces", I believe height map (or grey scaled image) generated normal maps are sufficient, for the most part. I can see how images that are designed for structural surfaces must have geometric based normal maps, but do you really think that it would be productive to create grass or gravel based geometry solely for the purpose of creating a normal map?

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Post by scott » 2005-02-26, 02:12

Hey stormtrooper, thanks for releasing those textures, thats very nice of you :)

With turning photos grey thats ok but you should also adjust the contrast, lighting levels etc.
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Post by KillerKind » 2005-02-26, 04:21

By the way, Kai. It would be nice if you would write a tutorial, or quick "how-to", on your techniques. Your images are fantastic. I know a lot of people who would benefit.

Edit: Also, will the new MatSys support shaders? Sorry if this info has been posted already.

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Post by Shadow » 2005-02-26, 05:20

how come only kai gets the mat sys.... lol
me wants!!! early christmas present carsten?
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Post by Carsten » 2005-02-26, 10:49

Shadow wrote:lol maybe im just dumb but whats the best way to get a heightmap from a photo texture then? just turn it grayscale?
That's a very good question.

Turning the texture grayscale will give you "some" heightmap, but certainly not a heightmap that is "correct", i.e. none that really represents the height of the texture elements (texture contents).

I believe that's also why Kai said that some texture work very well as they are - without any height- or normal-maps.

If I had to create heightmaps from diffusemaps (texture images), I'd probably also start with making them grayscale. But for best results, it is probably adviseable to start with a flat 50% gray texture, and then to hand-paint bumps (heights) and depressions (depths) manually into them.
This is a lot of work of course, but will probably yield (much) better and much more "correct" results.
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Post by Carsten » 2005-02-26, 10:56

KillerKind wrote:Edit: Also, will the new MatSys support shaders?
What do you mean by "shaders"? (This term has several meanings in the presence of a MatSys.)
But in any case, the answer is yes. ;)
Shaders (small scripts) will be used for defining materials and their properties. Very similar to D3.
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Post by Carsten » 2005-02-26, 11:05

Shadow wrote:how come only kai gets the mat sys....
Well, indeed a very small group of people got previews of the new MatSys a while ago. Kai has spent huge efforts in developing diffuse-, normal-, specular- etc. maps, and in fact has significantly helped me to clarify a lot of issues. So he was clearly the first to receive it.

Don't worry though:
I've stopped my work on CaWE (at least for now), in favour of preparing the upcoming release. I'll put the entire Ca3DE project under SubVersion version control on Monday morning, and then will do nothing but completing it for the release. :)
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Post by scott » 2005-02-26, 11:20

so got a release date for us Carsten?
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Thrawn
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Post by Thrawn » 2005-02-26, 12:25

Of course you can't just turn the textures to gray-scale and then it's done. You have to play around with contrast and brightness and fix some thing by hand. You can for example select just black and white and paint it on the texture by hand to get the best results!

Or you can do it completely by hand for very simple bumb-maps!

Example:

Diffuse texture

Image

Bumb-Map

Image

And now the normal map created with this bumb-map in photoshop:

Image

So it's not always necessary to create normal-maps or bumb-maps in such modelling-programs.

Looks quite good :wink:

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Post by Shadow » 2005-02-26, 23:54

yeah i was gonna play around with it. i just found a nice way of doing making bump maps. i will play around with it and maybe write up something quick if i feel its worth it. so will caWE be in the next release? i would like it cause of the object placement support but i guess i can do w/o it as long as i have the new mat sys lol
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