I am having some issues baking lightmaps for some rocks in my scene. Whenever I bake the lighting, I get dark spots on the rock. The spots don’t appear at seams in the lightmap, just in places where small shadows should occur. Instead of small shadows, though, I get deep black splotches. I have some pictures to illustrate the issue.
I suppose that the polygons are just too small for the lightmap, but I’m not sure how to fix that. Should I cut my rock into several different shells to get nice lighting, or would it be better to have something more contiguous, like what I have already?
Increasing the lightmap resolution results in slightly different splotches, but it does not make them go away.
I don’t get any warnings about overlapping UVs when I bake the lighting, but the meshes are just decimated versions of the rock sculpts, so there are a few long, narrow triangles that I worry are causing the problems. It’s also possible that it’s a problem of only having one light in the scene (the sun) and small overhangs in the rocks. Perhaps I am getting an accurate lightmap, and it’s just ugly.
The idea behind the baking is that the bounce lights eliminate the need for fill lights, right? Should I just be patient and wait until I have more rocks together, along with a floor? Will the bounce light then lighten up the shadows? Is there some other way to get softer, more natural shading?
Both of those changes increased the GI contribution of the light, leading to lighter shadows. I also tried creating a bit more of an environment around the rock, to actually give the light something to bounce from, and that had a great impact on the shadows as well. There are still a few dark splotches that show up here and there – I think you’re right that the UVs are responsible – but they are generally small, and probably (hopefully) won’t be noticed once I add some dappled light shadows from foliage.
Thanks a lot for your help, and for responding so quickly!