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Blender>Apex Clothing Tool>UE4?

Hi. We know that there is no Nvidia APEX clothing plugin for Blender. However, there is a standalone software, included in APEX SDK, called Clothing Tool. Has anyone tried exporting from Clothing Tool to UE4?
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Saw this: APEX Cloth - Authoring tool - UE4 AnswerHub Did Nvidia respond?

Take a look at the video from geodav: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VW7M0f04RwQ

In the GeoDav video, after the import in UE4, the cloth has shader/lightning problems. What could be the cause and how could they be fixed ? Has any of you tried if it imports correctly from clothing tool ?

i haven’t tried it yet from blender 2.71 so i’m not sure if its a blender / nvidia / UE4 issue , in the vid i think mentioned the warning normal/tangents i think this might be set on export from blender and import to UE4, haven’t had time to go back and check

If you find some free time, it would be really cool to make a tutorial for full character clothing in APEX cloth tool. (with animation ) A great source for characters could be MakeHuman : A new, community-hosted Unreal Engine Wiki - Announcements and Releases - Unreal Engine Forums

I think the problem seen in GeoDav’s video - regarding the tangent stuff - can be fixed by hitting the ‘Update Tangent Space’ button under the ‘Input Mesh’ tab before saving out the apex file. Certainly it made the error message and artefacts go away for me on the simple test model I was using. I can’t speak for anything more complex however. That’s for this afternoon I suppose!

Oh I suppose I should say that this was using Blender 2.71.5.

thanks for the tip Squarecoin , when i get a chance i’ll have another look

I’ve tried Squarecoin’s tip with 2.73, 2.73a and 2.74 RC1 and I keep getting the normals problem: is there another solution for this problem?

sorry i keep forgetting about this, i promise to have another look, but i can’t promise a full character tutorial as i’ve never tried it (yet)

thx!

I’m using “SK_UE4_Mannequinn_273.blend” from the Twitch Broadcast and I added a cape to it.

Importing in UE4 works fine, also importing in APEX Clothing tool works but when I import the APEX file in Unreal I got the tangent problem: I just need to fix this!

I’ll wait for your test! Thank you!

Another quick question if you can help me: is it correct to assign the vertex of the cloth item to the Pelvis vertex group for a character or should I create a new bone and vertex group?

i’d say use spine_03 , just a side note not sure if the scale is ok, but if it works for you then great

Thank you! I did a coupe of test and spine_03 is definitely better!

Scale is fine: I use Metric with scale set to 1 and on 100 in the FBX export!

Let me know if you find a solution for the tangent problem! :wink:

Have you tried blender 2.74 it calculates tangent space now.

I tried blender with apex, and while eventually I could export a simple cloth into ue4, it was not without problems. I had no tangent error, I pressed that “update tangent space” button, I don’t know if I would had gotten problems without it.
The problems I got:
-my model had more than one cloth, all mapped to different bone. It was working in one case, but missed the bone in the other… don’t know why.
-once I applied the apex file to my materials it has shifted UV, showed other part of my texture than before…
-I found that setting up collision in the apex SDK is very unintuitive (or the problem is with me)…

When using the newest version of Blender (the steam version-2.74), I exported a few test cloths. One of the few exported perfectly. The others either had collision issues, or the infamous “Skewed Normals and Tangents” problem. The cloth that exported perfectly was 6000 vertices, it had positive Z facing normals and tangents. It also was not very big (width was less than the UE4 test characters arm span). I used the “Update tangent Space button”. Lastly in Nvidia APEX tool. I only baked the simulation and collision once. Meaning I pressed calculate and hoped for the best. The process is definitely sketchy. It only seems to work if under perfect conditions. I hope the Blender Foundation, Nvidia, and Epic figure something out.

Hope this was helpful to someone.

Does anyone know how to fix the tangent issue?

Hi. It’s been a few years since I started this thread, but I found a solution to clothing pipeline so I tought to post it here in case that someone needs it.

So here is the guide:

  1. Model the character, clothing and rig them. They should have different materials. Import the character in UE4.

In Clothing Tool

  1. Import the character. You might select z axis up from the last tab if it is not oriented correctly.

  2. Select the cloth mesh from the top left and click on generate tangent space.

  3. select UV origin bottom left !!! It can be found in a drop-down menu.
    If you don’t select this setting, when you apply the apb file in UE4, the textures will look weird.

4 Paint the max distances

  1. Click on Generate collision volumes and move, scale or rotate the capsules as you desire. Click on Build Collision. If you add more, you might need to remove others. Sometimes, the mesh will cover the movement gyzmo and it won’t be visible. Be sure to switch from solid to wireframe mode to be sure where to move the collision capsules. Sometimes, if you click the move button and switch to other tab, the gyzmo is still active, but hidden by the mesh, so you could have the surprise to notice that capsules have moved from their places while you were painting distances. Be sure to press move again once you’ve finished manipulating capsules.

  2. Click on build collision. You should do this everytime you add or remove a capsule, or before export, to be sure.

  3. Click on single layer cloth, then simulate to see if the collision volumes are positioned correctly and there is no clipping. You could play with the wind.

  4. save asset as apb instead of apx

In UE4 :

  1. Import the character in UE4, then in Persona, import the apb clothing file. In 4.11, there is a bug that crashes the editor if you import more than one. It might be solved in future versions. You could also edit phisics proprietes. For short skirts, setting the gravity vallue to 3 or 4 works ok.

  2. Select the apb file under the material for your cloth.

  3. Success !

Hey, I am having the same issue in 3ds max. Where can i find the “set UV Origin Bottom Left” button?