next gen asset creation question

texturing is what i’m confused about so in order to create great looking asset what do i need ?

what i know
a low poly model/ and a high poly detailed version
proper topology (if it’s animated)
proper uv unwrapping
creating pbr material/shader in UE4
a bit map painted by hand or generated by procedural software like substance designer
a normal map extracted from the high poly model with xnormal or inside zbrush/mudbox
now what next what other maps are needed for creating great looking models (AAA guilty) ? maybe occlusion map right ? how to create them and why do we need them?
what else?

You dont need all kind of different maps to create good looking meshes -> lightning is also an important point (otherwise your mesh wont look so good).

But to summarize some kind of textures that you could use:

base colour
normal map
heightmap/displacement map -> tessellation or parallax shading
gloss/roughness map -> for roughness
metallic map -> for the metal slot
AO map -> ambient occlusion
cavity map -> adds some small details to the base colour (e.g scratches,…)
SSS map -> defines the SSS parts
and all kind of masks :slight_smile:

I would say this is the order of importance:

  • good diffuse (albedo) map WITHOUT LIGHTING PAINTED IN
  • good normal map
  • good AO map
  • good roughness map
  • good specular level map
  • other maps depend on the material – metallic? transparent? fresnel? light mapped?

You then have to figure out whether to give each mesh material its own shader/configuration, or whether you mash it all into one big texture and use masks to turn pieces on and off. Draw call count versus pixel shader cost, depends on your scene.

Finally – the way you stage/light the mesh makes a lot of difference. Shadowing is important. Fill lights are important. Well-chosen global lighting is important.

thanks guys i’ll pass this info to the artist problem is he’s a great great great great artist but his background is not from the gaming industry so he relies on me to explain to him about game development and i’m a programmer not an artist :stuck_out_tongue:

by the way what’s the point of pbr materials if we have to create all these kind of maps manually , doesn’t pbr rendering calculate these things automatically? for example i thought specular maps are from the past No? .

PBR is just the way it renders the material. It needs that map as an input. The engine doesn’t really know what carpet, concrete, dirt, etc looks like.

Make sure to take a look at this thread: https://docs.unrealengine/latest/INT/Engine/Rendering/Materials/PhysicallyBased/index.html There you will find many useful information about pbr materials :slight_smile:

PBR means many things.

Inside the engine, PBR takes all of the maps described, and does an accurate calculation of what the pixel should look like, given the orientation of the surface and the surrounding lights and surrounding global illumination.

To prepare these maps, you can either paint them manually (which is a totally legitimate way of doing it) or you can procedurally generate them (using a tool such as Substance Designer) or you can capture them from the real world using various complex camera, lighting, and reference setups, and some post-process number crunching to try to separate out the different terms from the captured surface.

Finally: Computer/Game art is a skill that is distinct from just being a good artist in another field. Taking someone who is a great illustrator and portrait painter and telling him/her to generate game textures, is a bit like taking someone who’s a great advertising photographer and telling him/her to paint a mural… Some of the basic sensibilities are the same, and some skills will transfer. Others, need to be learned from scratch, which is a long process. (Can be a lot of fun, though!)

If you haven’t yet checked out Substance Designer, then that might be a thing you might want to do.

thanks for your advice
about the artist he’s a good digital artist as well (2d) aside from being good traditional artist as for 3d he has good experience as a modeler (very good at creating low poly models he used 3d since it’s early releases ) and decent animation experience it’s not like the 3d world is completely alien to him . thought he uses cpu approach for rendering so yes real time asset creation is alien to him polycount and texture backing doesn’t exist in his world he uses actual high poly models all of his 3d works were with cartoony style in maya and , we first wrote the story of our game it was supposed to be in 2d and with unity i have decent experience with C# in and outside unity and he has more experience creating 2d art traditionally and digitally , i knew the fact that i’m not good with C++ and the fact that he has not created even a single game asset in his entire life will challenge us but he inserted that "we need to create something impressive in 3d using the unreal engine "

anyway we started downloading different demos and look at how they created their materials we have a much better understanding now we decided to create maps by hand we also might buy the allegorithmic indie pack if it was really that useful we’ll look at it

Hey Fennec,
Regarding the texture/material side of things… I have a background in architecture and traditional art forms and got into developing game assets about a year ago. It took me a while to figure out what was going on and I’m still learning and will no doubt continue to do so. I highly recommend the Algorithmic indie pack as the way to go. They have great support, and great tutorials and it’s a first class product. You get Substance Designer, Substance Painter and Bitmap2Material for $20 a month. It’s the best most current technology out there and will get you up to speed quickly if you learn these tools. Also, tell your partner to get on these forums and start reading… he should really be the one asking the questions and learning his trade. Best of luck!

You mean ***current ***gen :wink:
Next gen is all about VR/4K …