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09/10/2013 17:50:25

urbanlamb
urbanlamb
(Account inactive)
Posts: 1796
Jamie wrote:
fazz68 wrote:
Dreeko ive just had a little experiment with the sketchup to FBX thing. you can export a sketchup model as a COLLADA file and import it into Blender. and export from blender as a FBX file. i just tried on a simple chair model and it works but if you can understand all this texture info then you are a better man than me lol... see pic
urbanlamb is the expert on blender and may know what it all means Big Grin



What your seeing Fazz is another quirk of Sketchup. It applies everything as a separate material to the object. If you have slightly different shades of red it'll give you a material for each shade of red on the object.

In blender, if you go to the materials tab you'll see a list of materials that match all the names you see listed in Muvizu. You probably want to delete them all and re-apply just 1 or 2 new materials to the unique coloured areas of your model.



yes sketchup is a material "whore" if you use blender or whatever you can optimize and match up as jamie says anyhow um I should do a few more blender lessons I suppose I just find as I get older I suck more at teaching things (loss of brain cells maybe?)

I do now know how well the fbx exporter works in blender to be honest at the moment I dont use it much I know its rated as compatible with maya I dont know if there are a lot of peculiarities with the unreal engine and what they are. I would encourage anyone and everyone no matter how attached you are to your sketchup to learn blender at the very least if you want to spend money get 3ds max or maya but its not necessary. As you learn the concepts you will see just how much resources you save by doing it "the right way"

what I have learned when looking at skethcup models in blender is its actually faster to build an entire model from scratch then trying to sort through the sketchup mess. The grocery store in the asset gallery was what happened after I imported a sketchup model into (them other softwares and tried to make it pretty by adding normal maps it took up so many resources I opened it up on blender and tried to optimize it after sitting for about 4 hours I slapped my forehead and called myself names and created my own grocery store in 45 minutes reminding myself of why i swore to never do that the last time i tried)

hopefully this does not offend anyone but i am a self proclaimed "skethcup hater"


edited in: later I have not the time now i have something i am obligated to finish before returning to my superman madness I will try to work out the blender quirks for muvizu I dont imagine they are much different then the ase quirks I encounter. The shading issues in muvizu have to do with making edges sharp, adding edge creases and a few other things. This is an unreal engine thing and actually not seen in other engines (god did i mention this week how much of a geek i am? if not i am now)
edited by urbanlamb on 09/10/2013
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09/10/2013 19:53:56

fazz68
fazz68
(Account inactive)
Posts: 767
Jamie wrote:
thanks ukBerty and Ziggy. I'll have a look through those files and see where the problem is.


im convinced this is the same bug as this or at least related to because the results are the same...
http://www.muvizu.com/forum/topic2923-losing-textures-on-favorited-objects.aspx
and you get the same error message.
and this bug is about changing textures on an imported object and then saving that object in a set. a tiny experiment for you muvizu. (because this is where i have come across this bug in this version)
create a character, doesnt matter who....
import my c-4 model into a hand....
change the orange texture on a wire to a yellow one.
save the set.

now close muvizu

start muvizu..

reload set
everything is as it should be except the yellow wire and this message

the more textures you change on a model the more white parts you will get.
edited by fazz68 on 09/10/2013
edited by fazz68 on 09/10/2013
edited by fazz68 on 09/10/2013
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09/10/2013 19:56:06

DyllyMuvizu mogulExperimental user
Dylly
Posts: 555
Now then my Young Lamb

I must do a spot of wicket keeping here or at least bat for the opposing team...I hate Blender with a vengeance. After months of fiddling with the over complicated UI, I rapidly came to the conclusion that I would have a better chance of negotiating a lasting peace settlement for the Middle East than getting my poor head around Blender.

Don't get me wrong Sketchup has it's drawbacks, especially it's latest incarnation...but what do you expect when architects get involved? Check out the number of SAAB and Volvo models available in the warehouse! However by adding the right plugins to your sketchUp toolbar and learning the basic rules of modelling in 3D will have you knocking out good quality 3D models rapidly. First plugin is ThomThom's Cleanup (all plugins available at www.sketchucation.com). Does exactly what it says on the tin, gets rid of all that geometry that you do not need. Next up is Fredo's Thrupaint. Sorts out your textures and UV's. Finally there is the pen+ tools.Handy little gadget that helps draw vertices without having unwanted faces being added.

For those of a school age, don't forget that Maya and 3DX Max can be had from autodesk for free on an educational license. For everyone else don't forget there is a free converter available from Autodesk to convert your model files into FBX format.

My own personal workflow involves sketchUp for the bulk of the modelling. I then import the model into 3Ds Max for UVW unwrapping. Textures are created in Gimp ( I prefer Gimp to Photoshop) with the occasional tweak to a texture done in Mudbox.

My personal advice is, if you can use the likes of Maya, Max, Mudbox or Z-brush then take the opportunity to do so, if for whatever reason you can't then find the easiest solution. For some it maybe Blender for others SketchUp or even a combination of the two. I'm not so much getting on in years as galloping over the rapidly approaching precipice of senility shouting 'Yipee' as I go over the edge, so I'm afraid I didn't have the time or patience for Blender...apart from which, left with a future which contains the ominous possibility of the loss of me teef and a liquidised menu from Meals on Wheels or Muck on a truck I intend to steer clear of blenders for as long as I can.
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09/10/2013 19:56:20

DreekoMuvizu mogulExperimental user
Dreeko
Posts: 1258
ziggy72 wrote:
The Timeline blocks for animating Expressive-ness and Custom Texture aren't showing up after you record inputs. They still work fine, and you can see the line in the Timeline, but no blocks.


Yeah, I've noticed the timeline glitch too. It is a pest cos it means we can't tinker with the changes on the timeline. Hopefully there will be a patch to correct this.
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09/10/2013 20:59:43

urbanlamb
urbanlamb
(Account inactive)
Posts: 1796
Dylly wrote:
Now then my Young Lamb

I must do a spot of wicket keeping here or at least bat for the opposing team...I hate Blender with a vengeance. .


lol feel free to pitch

just as an aside I have spent quite awhile working in 3dsmax at one point its just that blender has come a long way. I have never tried mudbox but I would liken it down just by reading the info that its a stripped down version of 3dsmax and would compare to the modelling interface of blender if you were to remove all the extraneous bits.

Either way given a choice after I had worked with a group who I was forced to use 3dsmax with when I left this group (we made a mediochre video game and I had to do all the avatars ) I didn't see the point in sinking so much money into a tool that I could get exact results with for free this is the same concept of "do i use gimp or photoshop" In this case however I use photoshop. Both work equally as well only in a different way. Remember blender is a full on cgi tool that is why is has so many buttons


Sketchup was not designed for game engine use they just sort of decided to try it that way its for conceptualization mostly but if you worried about ensuring you use your pc's resources in the best manner possible sketchup is not a very good choice. Unless you use the free version if your going to spend money thought dont do it on sketchup


also..
as i was perusing the wiki about the fbx upgrades (Having a hard time finishing this project because i want to spend my spare time playing with this new feature) if you want to make normal maps and spec maps (cant wait to add windows and other things to models now )

I found this tool really handy i have had it for years
Crazybump http://www.crazybump.com/

the other one that is now sold by iclone does more but it also costs more is this one its awesome but i have not had a need to purchase it yet crazybump works fine for me bitmap2material is like crazybump on steroids but probably overkill for muvizu http://www.reallusion.com/creative/creative_b2m.aspx

i had planned to purchase this for myself soonish but not gotten around to spending the money as i am a stingy so and so
edited by urbanlamb on 11/10/2013
edited by urbanlamb on 11/10/2013
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09/10/2013 22:05:24

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
ukBerty wrote:
Workaround for attached objects turning white on save and open:-


When attaching an object to a character simply import the object normally - i.e. create > import. Just stick it somewhere out the way.
Then import the same object attached to your character and it will save and open OK.


Thanks Berty, that works exactly as you said! Toast
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11/10/2013 02:09:40

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
Question : What happens if I create a set in Play+ and put it up on the Assets? Will non '+' users be able to load it? Would the sets always have to be labelled as Play+ specific?
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11/10/2013 06:10:21

urbanlamb
urbanlamb
(Account inactive)
Posts: 1796
fbx works flawlessly on a quick test and its just a whole other level of awesome. This is the house in the gallery fbx and ase let me know if you can tell the difference. Finally real windows we dont have to fit that means i can make cars with windows in them and more windows and all kinda windows .. now for some more info for the curious. I ran this model through iclone 3d exchange as a test I did not alter collision or add any further collision so I actually didnt crack open blender and make a new model I created this model last month for use in iclone and stuffed an ase version into the gallery here. So basically you can set up models in 3dexchange if you have access to them and add all the normal maps, spec maps etc to your hearts content. I will add this and the post office and anything else I have an fbx duplicate in that I created for personal use in blender to the gallery. I guess now we need a gallery for muvizu play + assets as well though. I am unsure if as ziggy says we can put up sets built with fbx coded files for use in regular muvizu play. Anyhow I just loved having all those buttons to play with opascity, specularity etc etc


So thanks again I said thanks before but thank you again for this stuff. I can't say thank you enough because I like muvizu and wanted to use it for like other stuff in the future as i got time.. so um yes thanks (i said that didnt I? well there it is again )


I can't concentrate to finish my collab 2d animation project and just had to put it aside to play with the fbx import it works GREAT .. Big Grin
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11/10/2013 08:00:31

DreekoMuvizu mogulExperimental user
Dreeko
Posts: 1258
Well this FBX thing seems to have you all of a lather Urbanlamb!

I and others would probably benefit from seeing a list of what FBX now brings to Muvizu's table.
It obviously is not just an alternative to the .ase import format. I remember when the lighting was revamped and how much it changed the quality of the overall look to videos made with muvizu. From your enthusiasm it feels like this could be another one of those milestone moments for the software. My frustration with the FBX feature comes from a few things - Not really knowing it's abilities, it's limitations for import or where to best create one.
It is like I've received a mystery object for Christmas with no idea where to put the batteries, no instructions on how to assemble it, or feature list of what it does once it is all in one piece, so I end up kicking it around in the garden assuming it is a fancy looking football, with the neighbours kids looking over their fence shaking their heads.

A few months ago I wouldn't have known FBX if I came across it in my soup! And today I'm still looking at it curiously.
I've checked the muvizu wiki and it is not yet even listed in the supported file types.

What is that cheesy saying that gets under my skin? ..
Oh yes
A stranger is just a friend I've never met ( puke!)

Well, I want to be a friend of FBX ...whether it wants to be a friend of mine is another matter mind you lol!

I'm basically requesting tutorials and guidance again Muvizu.


Cheers
D
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11/10/2013 09:10:59

Lev_Dynamite
Lev_Dynamite
Posts: 157
Dreeko wrote:
I've checked the muvizu wiki and it is not yet even listed in the supported file types.
The Wiki is intended for Community use - all logged-in users should be able to edit entries - so if you see something missing then please feel free to add it on in there! If everyone just looks at it and waits for someone else to update it then it may as well be a static webpage, so it'd be nice to see people taking full advantage of the Wiki's features.
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11/10/2013 09:46:25

ukBertyMuvizu mogulExperimental user
ukBerty
Posts: 976
I'm 100% with Dreeko here - I continue to plod on with .ASE files as that's what I've worked out how to use (I actually converted an FBX to ASE this morning through Autodesk, DAE and Sketchup to remove collision !).

What advantages does FBX have over ASE. Everyone who knows what they are seems very excited.

And more importantly, how do I remove collision from an FBX ? Can I do this automatically without having to master 3d modelling ?
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11/10/2013 10:40:30

JamieMuvizu staff
Jamie
(Account inactive)
Posts: 609
ziggy72 wrote:
Question : What happens if I create a set in Play+ and put it up on the Assets? Will non '+' users be able to load it? Would the sets always have to be labelled as Play+ specific?



If your set file uses one of the Play+ features then a user of Play will get a error message to tell them that the set contains a unlicensed feature.

If you save a set in Play+ without any of the features of it then Play users can open it without any problems.

--
Direct, don't animate!
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11/10/2013 10:50:02

JamieMuvizu staff
Jamie
(Account inactive)
Posts: 609
ukBerty wrote:
I'm 100% with Dreeko here - I continue to plod on with .ASE files as that's what I've worked out how to use (I actually converted an FBX to ASE this morning through Autodesk, DAE and Sketchup to remove collision !).

What advantages does FBX have over ASE. Everyone who knows what they are seems very excited.

And more importantly, how do I remove collision from an FBX ? Can I do this automatically without having to master 3d modelling ?



There's a lot of advantages to FBX, but in terms of what Muvizu:Play+ supports the material system is the real advantage. Blender 2.69RC has a FBX importer - though I've not tried it yet. So you could directly import your FBX into blender and delete the collision there before exporting it as FBX directly from blender. You would need to have some collision otherwise Muvizu will generate collision for you, just as it does with ASE.

All you need to do is create a small cube and place it to the side, similar to the match box collision. Name the cube object UCX_objectname and export it from there.

There isn't really any automatic way of doing this. You can have plain text ASCII fbx files but they are a lot more complicated than ASE format files and a batch script to replace collision would need to read the whole file, identify id numbers and names and remove and re-add the linkage. I'm sure it could be done though. The biggest problem would be that the majority of FBX files your likely to download would be in binary format.

Overall, its not that hard to just add a cube in blender and give it the correct naming format for collision in Muvizu.

--
Direct, don't animate!
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11/10/2013 11:24:31

ukBertyMuvizu mogulExperimental user
ukBerty
Posts: 976
Thanks Jamie for the info. I will give it a go.

The trouble is with my little batch file I can remove collision from 25 .ASE files in literally 5 seconds (and I do things on this scale a lot when building a new set). With FBX it will take a lot, lot longer.

I guess it's horses for courses though and I'm sure the FBX import feature will be useful on occasion and for those creating models it will be a godsend.

Of course a "Enable objects to occupy the same space" checkbox in Muvizu would overcome all these issues in one fell swoop
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11/10/2013 11:29:31

DreekoMuvizu mogulExperimental user
Dreeko
Posts: 1258
Lev_Dynamite wrote:
The Wiki is intended for Community use


I imagine staff are allowed to as well though eh? There are more of you in there than there are regular users in the forum these days! If Ziggy72, Urbanlamb and MrDrWho all went on holiday at the same time then the place would be a ghost town!


Lev_Dynamite wrote:
If everyone just looks at it and waits for someone else to update it then it may as well be a static webpage, so it'd be nice to see people taking full advantage of the Wiki's features.


I quite agree, but again I'm sure the staff could pitch in too!
I think the Wiki should be built from the input of users and staff alike. I also think though that any tutorial or help file in the form of an online documentation or downloadable pdf IS part of the software package and should not be left to the users to create.

I understand finding time for these things is a problem but they really are essential and should given more attention than they are at present.
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11/10/2013 11:36:46

DreekoMuvizu mogulExperimental user
Dreeko
Posts: 1258
Thanks Jamie
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11/10/2013 12:39:41

gimmick
gimmick
Posts: 179
Hello,

Where could we see video examples of object attachment in the hand?
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11/10/2013 14:55:13

JamieMuvizu staff
Jamie
(Account inactive)
Posts: 609
Dreeko,

I know you really want to know how to create FBX models and there isn't any sort of Muvizu-produced guide for this yet, but they are out there. The major problem with producing the type of tutorial you are asking for is that it would not be a Muvizu tutorial, it would be a Blender or Maya tutorial trying to teach you how to use those applications to do 3D modelling for games engines.

If you've already paid for Muvizu:Play+ you may not want to spend any more on a 3D modelling package like 3D Studio Max or Maya, so I'd recommend Blender to create your FBXs. The skills you learn in Blender can be transfered over to something like Maya later on, should you decide that those are the packages for you. To use Blender, you'll need version 2.69 RC to get the updated FBX exporter, though the version that comes with 2.68 and earlier works in a basic fashion.

Everything that you would want to do with FBX is not Muvizu specific. It means learning 3D modelling for a games engine. I recommend http://www.youtube.com/user/cgboorman if you want to learn blender.

There are a lot of other tutorials on youtube already that cover the various different 3D modelling packages out there, as well as the techniques, tips and tricks.

To understand the basics of the Blender UI and the basics of 3D modelling I'd recommend watching tutorials 1 - 8 in this playlist

http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL006307E237BB7FF6&feature=plcp

Another great resource is http://cg.tutsplus.com/ which goes into full detail on modelling and animating.

So what are the benifits of FBX?

FBX is just a different format to ASE, however importing static meshes from FBX gives a vastly improved materials system.

I've put up a guide to the material options here and while some of those options were available with ASE, things like transparency on a window never worked properly. The FBX material system allows you to have transparent sections of a model that work as you'd expect, amongst other things. (your trees and bees can finally look as you wanted them to Dylly ).

I've uploaded a sample FBX object that includes all possible materials options (listed below) it's available here http://www.muvizu.com/3D/31493/FBX-Material-example

What can FBX do and what does Muvizu:Play+ support?

Static meshes up 65535 vertices
Collision meshes
Diffuse materials
Specular materials
Normal maps
Specular maps
Emissive materials
Transparent materials
edited by Jamie on 11/10/2013

--
Direct, don't animate!
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11/10/2013 15:29:22

Lev_Dynamite
Lev_Dynamite
Posts: 157
Dreeko wrote:
Lev_Dynamite wrote:
The Wiki is intended for Community use


I imagine staff are allowed to as well though eh?
Yes we are, which is why...

Dreeko wrote:
I'm sure the staff could pitch in too!
...I believe 100% of the content on the Wiki thus far has been put there by myself, Mike_Num_5, Jamie, glasgowjim, rbeck1993, Emily and IanS with MrDrWho13 being the only non-Staff user to date to contribute any kind of Wiki edits. Unfortunately, it seems a lot of users are either missing the Wiki entirely or have a "someone else will write this up" attitude, which is a shame as it belittles the potential of such a useful community-driven tool. If you "quite agree" that it'd be nice to see users join us staff members in helping to unlock the Wiki's full potential, perhaps you could post a few entries and be the spark that starts the flame?
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11/10/2013 16:11:06

MrDrWho13Muvizu mogulExperimental user
MrDrWho13
Posts: 2221
gimmick wrote:
Hello,

Where could we see video examples of object attachment in the hand?

This was done a while ago with the test version:
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