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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Birmingham
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    47

    Normal Maps like in Unreal Engine 3

    I have collected a bunch of resources on normal mapping like used in unreal engine 3, doom 3 and Farcry.

    For those curious about normal mapping

    For those that haven't seen Unreal Engine 3 yet
    http://unrealtechnology.com/html/technology/ue30.shtml

    Read this one before doing any of the other tutorials this tutorial will help you to understand what a normal map is
    http://www.monitorstudios.com/bclowa...mal_maps1.html

    Zbrush 2 and Normal Maps
    http://209.132.69.82/zbrush/zbrush2/displacement.html

    ZbrushCental Forum Normal Map posts
    http://www.pixolator.com/zbc-bin/ult...c&f=1&t=011260
    http://www.pixolator.com/zbc-bin/ult...c&f=1&t=015376
    http://www.pixolator.com/zbc-bin/ult...c&f=1&t=011757
    http://www.pixolator.com/zbc-bin/ult...c&f=1&t=011894
    http://www.pixolator.com/zbc-bin/ult...c&f=4&t=000789

    ATI Tools
    http://www.ati.com/developer/tools.html
    http://www.ati.com/developer/sdk/rad...lsPlugIns.html

    NVidia Tools
    http://developer.nvidia.com/page/tools.html

    Drones tutorials
    http://www.drone.org/tutorials/normal_maps.html
    http://www.drone.org/tutorials/displacement_maps.html
    http://www.drone.org/tutorials/displ...ps_mental.html
    http://www.drone.org/tutorials/rayDi...rkarounds.html
    http://www.drone.org/tutorials/rayDisplace_mental.html

    Tutorial on creating Normal Maps in 3DS Max
    http://www.pinwire.com/article82.html

    Generating Normal maps for wall textures with Cinema
    http://members.shaw.ca/jimht03/normal.html

    Lightwave and normal maps
    http://amber.rc.arizona.edu/lw/normalmaps.html

    FarCry game that uses normal maps
    http://www.crytek.com/screenshots/in...px=poly_02.jpg
    Maps made using a program called PolyBump which generates normal maps from geometry, optionally including height-map bump maps. Includes 3ds max and Maya plugins. Includes code for integrating the effect into your real-time 3D engine. Includes standalone viewer.
    http://www.crytek.de/polybump/index.php?sx=polybump

    A PC Program for dealing with them
    http://www.mankua.com/

    Mike Bunnell’s modification of ATI’s tool that uses OBJ files instead of ATI’s NMF format. Optionally creates a sub-division surface for you. Creates displacement maps. Supports 16-bit TIFF. Etc.
    http://subd.4t.com/normalmapper/

    ORB is another normal map generator, converts 3D models into normal maps. Also generates displacement maps, diffuse maps, vertex-color maps. Imports ASE/OBJ/LWO formats. Previewer included.
    http://www.soclab.bth.se/practices/orb.html

    Texporter can create a normal map from high-res geometry, as long as the UVs are there. Although I should point out it is a world-space normal map, thus you shouldn’t rotate or deform the final model that has the normal map on it, because the shading will be horrible. World space normals are best for static objects in your game.
    http://www.cuneytozdas.com/software/3dsmax/#Texporter

    Gary Pate (a.k.a. Ionized) has a great tutorial using 3ds max and ATI's normal mapper.
    http://www.ionization.net/tutsnorm1.htm

    XSI normal mapping
    http://be3d.republika.pl/howto_d3_normalmap.html

    Blender normal mapping
    http://reblended.com/www/alien-xmp/T...NormalMap.html

    Discreet's utility plugin Normal Render works OK, but requires a similar UV layout between the low-res and high-res objects. This can be quite limiting. Not many options in the tool. Works with max4 and max5. Free registration is required to download the file.
    http://sparks.discreet.com/downloads...m?f=2&wf_id=83

    Ben Lipman’s gNormal plugin goes in the bump channel of a material, allowing you to use your normal map in the 3ds max renderer.
    http://www.maxplugins.de/max5.php?search=gnormal

    Nvidia has a tool they're about to release called Melody. It can create the low-res model automatically (seems pretty good, as far as auto-LOD is concerned, but of course never as good as manual) and they wrap the whole thing in a GUI.
    Some opinions here:
    http://dynamic.gamespy.com/~polycoun...ML/002595.html
    http://developer.nvidia.com/docs/IO/...sYouCanEat.ppt
    http://developer.nvidia.com/docs/IO/...sYouCanEat.pdf

    Peter Watje’s Object Texture plugin generates a normal map from geometry and places it in a material, so you can render it with the max renderer. However, the map is tied to actual geometry in the scene, or cached in the material, but it cannot be exported into a bitmap. I just thought I’d provide a link anyhow, since it comes with full source code.
    http://www.max3dstuff.com/max4/matOb...ture/help.html

    Mankua's Kaldera is the best so far in my opinion. Not just because I helped them develop and test it, but because it is so flexible and works right in max. Lots of control over how the normals are generated. Bakes several channels at once… diffuse, lit, lighting only, normals, height, alpha, etc. Bakes multiple objects into one, including atmospherics. Comes with a handy normal map texture plugin, for using normal maps in the bump channel with the scanline renderer (also works in Brazil a friend tells me).
    http://www.mankua.com/kaldera.cfm

    ATI and NVIDIA each use different normal map formats with their graphics chips.
    Basically ATI expects the green channel to point the normal upwards, while NVIDIA expects it to point downwards.
    The MetalBump shader in 3ds max uses the NVIDIA method.
    Mankua’s Kaldera has the option to output either ATI or NVIDIA format. I’m not sure about the other tools.
    One sure-fire method to fix a map that’s incompatible with your viewer is to simply invert the green channel in your image editor of choice. By inverting I mean the black pixels should be white, and the white pixels should be black.

    Polycount thread containing tips about painting/editing normal maps.
    http://dynamic.gamespy.com/~polycoun...ML/002497.html

    Polycount thread explaining World Space vs. Object Space vs. Tangent Space.
    http://dynamic.gamespy.com/~polycoun...ML/001876.html

    Polycount thread dissecting Doom III’s use of normal mapping.
    http://dynamic.gamespy.com/~polycoun...ML/000441.html

    Digital Sculpting Forum threads about normal mapping/displacement extraction.
    http://cube.phlatt.net/forums/spiral....php?TopicID=9
    http://cube.phlatt.net/forums/spiral...hp?TopicID=395
    http://cube.phlatt.net/forums/spiral...hp?TopicID=581

    AMP II A game engine that uses normal maps
    http://www.4drulers.com/ampdownload.html
    http://www.4drulers.com/gore/sshots/player_wip10.jpg

    These links and info have been gathered from all over, take them and repost if you like.
    Last edited by HeliosDoubleSix; 06-20-2004 at 09:54 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Arvada, Colorado
    Posts
    1,020
    Awesome! These links are great!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    2,502

    Thumbs up

    *whoa!* thanks for those links =)


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    491
    Well it seems to me that your putting a lot of time to find resources on the web about particular subjects. I found this subject very cool and i also looked around a lot on the web about normal mapping. I think it's a great feature for new games and io think we will see this a lot it the next generation games. THX for the links and i can only say keep posting these great links.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    26

    ZBrush

    ZBrush is quickly becoming the industry standard app for adding the geometry for normal mapping, partly because it's so easy to use for organic models. I'd highly reccomend everyone try it out, there is a demo for v1.5 which has essentially the same functionality for creating the geometry for normal mapping, however the new version 2 streamlines the process by actually creating the image (similar to a texture) to take right back into your 3D app of choice rather than having to import the higher poly model that v1.5 would give you.

    Check it out when you get a chance, the community for it is extremely helpful and the app is probably one of the best documented 3D apps I've ever used. Not to mention their Zscript tutorials which are fantastic.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    661
    Excellent post on this subject I was blown away by the UE3 vids and am looking forward to developing in that environment, this will get me ahead start.

    Two thumbs up!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    South France
    Posts
    53

    Thumbs up

    U did it ,u did it ! I was just looking for normal mapping tutorials...Amazing ! Big big thx

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Las Vegas
    Posts
    22
    wow man excellent post. i was looking for some tuts on normal maps cause i saw what the new unreal engince could do. and u hit the spot. thx a bunch man
    http://www.frag-ops.com

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Posts
    1,191
    OH THanks GREAT POST!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Birmingham
    Posts
    47

    bump 3

    I hope people don't mind me bumping this

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