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Topic Starter Topic: Learning Blender 2.7.3

Boink!
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PostPosted: 01-06-2015 11:45 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Sorry to open a thread on this... but I am trying to learn Blender, and there seem to be a few things in the design philosophy that you cannot really look up in the manual, since they think that is normal ;).

1. Can it be that a global snap to grid does not really exist? I found all sorts of specific snapping, but when transforming the initial cube Rotate and Scale (I have bottom icons: Snap during transform and Snap Element, Increment) turned on, they neither rotate snap nor scale snap. Translate works at least.

2. As I understand it, the editing in Blender initially pretty much centres on the the origin of the 3D view? Not like in Radiant where you normally could not care less where you start work?

3. Tips of properly setting up the grid to actually relate to GTKradiant's grid would be helpful. I found a tutorial that converts to Q3A .map format, but they guy already finished building his content. Blender uses a "floating point grid"... ieek.

4. Tips on where to download the proper Q3A Map import/export modules would help. I found something but that seems to have been for Q2.

Hope we have a few Blender experts that can help out to better understand the concepts behind Blender vs. Radiant.

-= AEon Does =- a modelling tool ;)

Thanks.




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The Afflicted
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PostPosted: 01-06-2015 01:06 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


blender towards q3 level-editing? kats-bits.

Not the torrent site but the other one




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Theftbot
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PostPosted: 01-06-2015 02:13 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


1.-- shift-TAB(incrementing snapping) works for translating/rotating/scaling though if your in 8 grid/subdiv. still scales in 1/10th increment
2.-- pretty much yes though alot of the tools work by the 3d Cursor(location)
3.-- Blender grid settings are accessed by pressing n key over to the right in the display settings lines 16/scale 1.00/subdivisions 8
most of the map exporters use 100% as scale use 64% to make a default cube a 128^3 brush in radiant
4.-- There is no map importer(it would be really nice though) but for 2.73 this: https://github.com/BabylonJS/Babylon.js/tree/master/Exporters/Blender works well




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Theftbot
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PostPosted: 01-06-2015 02:33 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


also: If you set the display grid to lines 16/scale .64/subdivisions 8 then you can use 100% in exporter scale




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PostPosted: 01-06-2015 02:52 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Thanks... figured out the grid one... though my settings for that seem to have been reset again after reloading Blender.

5. Is there a way to make Blender remember the interface layout I choose? E.g. I use ctrl+cursor up to maximize the interface and remove all the animation/scene stuff I don't need. And also reorder the panels under "n"... but none of that gets saved. I would be hoping for some form of interface session saving. Or simply for the editor to just remember what I set up.

6. Is there a fly mode in Blender? You can rotate around the origin (MMB, I hacked it to the RMB) (world or object etc), pan the view (shift+MMB), and zoom in/out (ctrl+MMB)... strangely the cursor keys (so far) do not seem to be used at all?

7. I noted that you can turn on "modules" for all sorts of things in the preferences IIRC. Are these actually available on restarting Blender? Had the feeling I was missing something.

8. Is there a way to Bevel objects? Have not yet found it. Have to read up on edge, face, and vertex mode though yet.

Some whining: I still have the feeling every single thing that should be boundlessly trivial to do, like put selected brush into a group, select another one also add it to that group, since I assume it to be the active one fails. A new group was created for the second brush. I wonder if the RC 2.7.3 I am testing is actually so broken... apparently whoever went to an insane amount of work to create the interface, thinks around bends all the time. Or I am just too stupid... sigh. As if the intuitive way to do it has been avoided on purpose... heaven forbid you can trial and error how something works. If id had forced to us to build maps with Blender, only modellers would have created maps, and possibly very beautiful they might have been. But easy brush manipulation this ain't. Just goes to show how ingeniously intuitive Reflex is as an editor (OK it does have almost no features ;)). Sorry about that... I am just not tough enough, like modellers seem to be.




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Theftbot
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PostPosted: 01-06-2015 03:15 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


5.-- Make a bare mapping blend file w/your settings,or save startup file Ctrl-U
6.-- Fly mode SHIFT-f move around WASD.
7.-- In Preferences on the bottom is a "Save User Settings" button that saves them.
8.-- In the specials menu(edit mode w-key) there is bevel.




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PostPosted: 01-06-2015 03:44 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


I seem to have made a cardinal mistake of hiding the scene panel... that makes some things clearer.

I just bevelled a cube, and noted that the way I created it in Radiant was wrong in the corners, the corners should be triangles. Anyway that tool alone is worth understanding the editor...

Watching beginner tutorials... apparently a faster way to learn than trying to read the manual.




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This is not Æon!
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PostPosted: 01-06-2015 10:09 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Youtube is your channel man, usually much easier than reading when it comes to learning how to use an application in the beginning.



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PostPosted: 01-07-2015 12:49 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Indeed found this series of tutorials on YT: Blender Basics (6 parts) for Blender v2.6.6... they are slightly old, and v2.7.3 has changed, but these explain many things. I'd recommend you listen, and then with Blender open, retry the little tests to see that you can repeat them. Especially the "Modeling" one is crammed with info.

Using 3ds Max theme in Blender now... I am such a traitor ;).




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The Afflicted
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PostPosted: 01-07-2015 02:53 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Slightly off topic. After reading this thread, and your other, it reminded me of chats I used to have with Kat about the use of staitic meshes in level design. Regarding how the editor is much of a compositor now, with assets designed in a third party application.
Even with Q3, I mostly map that way now. Looking at Hipshot's source files, it seems he has been doing it too.
The two things I really wish had been added to Radiant (or Q3map2) were a one click method of creating ase models and allowing simplified collision hulls to be part of the model. That feature made using models in Q4 so much easier.




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surfaceparm nomarks
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PostPosted: 01-07-2015 04:46 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


dONKEY wrote:
Regarding how the editor is much of a compositor now, with assets designed in a third party application.
Even with Q3, I mostly map that way now. Looking at Hipshot's source files, it seems he has been doing it too.


And then there are fools like me who can't be arsed to wrap their had around UV mapping. :owned: I admire you guys for having the patience to deal with this!



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This is not Æon!
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PostPosted: 01-07-2015 06:06 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


I'm doing it a lot, however, many of my modeled shapes are made in radiant and then exported to ASE using Q3map2. But more complex angles and shapes, I do in Max like the trees and the terrain in my levels are vertex painted and shaped also in max.

I should be moving over from max to blender too really, mostly because it's free. I really really like max though and have been using it for so many years now.

I'm gonna investigate further. When you work low-poly like I do, all these applications are more or less the same in it's basic functions.



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Theftbot
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PostPosted: 01-07-2015 11:15 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


dONKEY:
Image




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PostPosted: 01-07-2015 12:17 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Well... figured out how the bevel thing works, and applied it to a cube... that was really interesting. Next need to figure out how clipping works. There seems to be some form of "knife" command... hmm... and get the import/export to Q3A installed and tested.

Anyway, here a animated bevelled glass cube... that used up 100% of my i7 920 four cores... uncanny:


The last time I really tried to create something was on my Amiga 4000... about 20 years ago... we do seem to have come a ways ;).

I have to admit I am starting to like what Blender can do... even though I still find basic navigation less than ideal. But key frame animation and rendering can quickly be learned watching a tutorial.




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PostPosted: 01-07-2015 02:50 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Theftbot wrote:
4.-- There is no map importer(it would be really nice though) but for 2.73 this: https://github.com/BabylonJS/Babylon.js/tree/master/Exporters/Blender works well


Alas, simply do not know how to download the files. It certainly cannot only be one file... there is no zip download activated...

And
http://blogs.msdn.com/b/eternalcoding/a ... ender.aspx
then explains how to install the plugin.

I even developed "AEradiant" for a very brief time on GitHub, and back then you could download the latest compiles... hmm...




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Theftbot
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PostPosted: 01-07-2015 03:11 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote





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PostPosted: 01-07-2015 04:25 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Thank you... that works for export to Q3A .map... is there a import .map also available?


Installing above Exporter:
For those interested, the above exporter needs to be unpacked into:
    Blender\<version number>\scripts\addons\
creating the io_scene_map folder there. Launch Blender, then under File menu, User Preferences, Add-ons tab, find Import-Export: Quake MAP format, enable the addon, and do not forget to hit the Save User Settings button at the bottom of the window. You may need to restart Blender for the addon to take (not sure, I did). After you then create some primitives, select the ones you want to export, use File menu, Export, Quake MAP (.map) to save them in Q3 map format. In Radiant use File menu, Import... to load the primitives into the editor.


Been testing a bit, your suggestion for grid Scale 0.800 leads from a 1.6 sided cube to 160u in Radiant, so 0.01 = 1u.

I noted that the bevel tool actually hollows out the inside of the cube. Is there some way to fill out a hollow object in Blender? I.e. to later do a CSG merge and turn it all into one brush?

Update:
Created a 0.64³ cube in Blender (that is a 64³u³ one in Radiant), turned on Edit Mode, then via Ctrl+B (Bevel) manually set offset to 0.04, segments 1 and profile 0.5 (?), the rest unselected. This recreates "exactly" (dimensions and mostly in shape) the brush cubes in Radiant. But when importing this in Radiant, the brushes (now angled) that define all 12 bevelled cube edges have gone missing. I.e are not loaded and shown by Radiant. Seems these are sub-unit or something... for the larger 160³u³ cube it worked. Hopefully I did not set up something properly...




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The Afflicted
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PostPosted: 01-07-2015 11:16 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


@Theftbot, that's useful, but not quite what I meant.
Remember region compiles?
I thought it would be useful, within a working map, to be able to select a group and compile/convert with a single click, model save in the correct place etc. It's no big deal to manually do it, but in a large map and working with a ton of details, it would streamline the work process.




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This is not Æon!
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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 03:48 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Hmm, Aeon, I think that you might be going in the wrong direction here. I think you should make the bulk of your level in radiant and then use a modeling application to create assets for the level instead.



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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 06:45 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Hmm... I actually am... I only did the bevelled cube as a Blender test... so created that asset in Blender... it turns out the "asset" fails to import properly into Radiant. And the cube is the most trivial case... so this does not bode well at all.

The bevelling in Microbrush 3 on the other hand may be different but at least works without problems.

There seems to be an import/export path for Blender that uses ASE models. That might be more stable... but I really do not want to build everything in Radiant in models... since the lighting is inferior to brushwork. I have seen Sock actually texture ASE models via model parameters... but it certainly would not be like texture painting to recolour or caulk the ASE models. Hmm...




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This is not Æon!
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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 07:00 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Lightmaps are not inferior on models, just use "spawnflags 4" on them, so they actually gets lightmapped =)



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Insane Quaker
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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 07:55 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


AEon wrote:
I have seen Sock actually texture ASE models via model parameters...


I would like to see more information concerning this. Do you know where you would have seen this. Everything I find concerning texturing models has to do with UV mapping and painting the texture from that.


Also, did you make sure that the models was tripled (or that the quad polygons were all converted into triangles) when you were exporting. I'm not 100% sure that all ASE exporters do that for you automatically, and your model won't import into Radiant with quads.




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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 08:33 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


phantazm11 wrote:
AEon wrote:
I have seen Sock actually texture ASE models via model parameters...
I would like to see more information concerning this. Do you know where you would have seen this. Everything I find concerning texturing models has to do with UV mapping and painting the texture from that.


If you look at Sock's Pyramid of the Magicial source files... i.e. the .map and then check the properties of the ferns (plants), IIRC that is where I found that. I then used it in AEdm7 a bit... I think on the cubes too... checked on the ferns in AEdm7... green ones and dead ones... they both use the same ASE model, but different textures set under the model's properties (N-key) in Radiant using:
Code:
model models/mapobjects/aedm7/pom_shrub01a.ase
but
_remap *;textures/aedm7/pom_leave01b
and
_remap *;textures/aedm7/pom_leave01d

Turns out the "_remap" is a q3map2 directive.

These "textures" are actually shaders:
Code:
// ****************
// **** PLANTS ****
// ****************

textures/aedm7/pom_leave01d      // fern (dead)
{
   qer_editorimage textures/aedm7/pom_leave01d.tga
//   q3map_backShader textures/aedm7/pom_leave01d_back
   q3map_vertexScale 1.5
   qer_alphafunc greater 0.5
   surfaceparm alphashadow
   surfaceparm trans
   surfaceparm nonsolid
   surfaceparm nomarks
   {
      map textures/aedm7/pom_leave01d.tga
      rgbGen vertex
      depthWrite
      alphaFunc GE128
   }
}

textures/aedm7/pom_leave01d_back
{
   surfaceparm trans
   surfaceparm nonsolid
   surfaceparm nomarks
   {
      map textures/aedm7/pom_leave01d.tga
      rgbGen const ( 0.2 0.2 0.2 )
      alphaFunc GE128
   }
}

You should be seeing all this in Sock's Pyramid of the Magician... I am using less plant models in AEdm7.

Hope that helps.

phantazm11 wrote:
Also, did you make sure that the models was tripled (or that the quad polygons were all converted into triangles) when you were exporting. I'm not 100% sure that all ASE exporters do that for you automatically, and your model won't import into Radiant with quads.

I didn't do that... and have no idea where to find that option in Blender... hmm... would explain my problems. Note I am using the io_scene_map exporter, that saves .map files, not ASE ones. Should that make a difference.




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Insane Quaker
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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 09:13 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


I thought you were talking about texturing inside the model program using Radiant-like texturing methods. I assumed that from something he posted in his thread...I'm going to ask him about that.

Converting Quadrangles to Triangles in Blender:

Code:
Mode: Edit mode

Hotkey: CtrlT

Menu: Mesh » Faces » Convert Quads to Triangles or Face Specials » Triangulate

As its name intimates, this tool converts each selected quadrangle into two triangles. Remember that quads are just a set of two triangles… Note that it does not work on FGons.


I always do this RIGHT BEFORE I EXPORT and I don't save the model after it is tripled in order to preserve the quads in case I need to make changes to the model later. It is always better to work with quads (IMHO) because it is harder to apply complex changes later on if the model is tripled (beveling, extruding, etc.)

Does that make sense?

That applies to ASE models...I don't have a clue how your .map exporter handles the conversion, but it is worth a try.




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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 10:05 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


I only a few moments ago found the command as well... Edit mode, have all faces selected, Mesh menu, Faces, Triangulate Faces (Ctrl+T) its now called in 2.7.3 RC.

Keeping the quads, since those are Blenders "inherent" faces, makes total sense. Then again this is pretty much the case in Radiant as well. Only us "nuts" manually miter, and we probably all found out what a pain it is to work with mitered geometry.

My own test, followed your steps exactly, bevelled "finial" cube, selected all faces, Ctrl+T, checked indeed all faces were turned into triangles... exported as .map, loaded into Radiant same problem. The bevelled edges are not loaded, all the more strange since the bevelled corners and faces are all there.

Good tip... though I still suspect that sub-unit issue. Checked the .map file, and it is totally off grid, ever so slightly. Select all, vertex mode and Ctrl+G in Radiant seems get the vertices on the grid again. Even with the missing edges, the way brushes are created for Radiant, it really seems to be less and less worth the bother... if even simple geometry already has such issues. Hmmm....

Something I may try is to simply use a base "module" that is 128³u³ and create that size in Blender... import to Radiant and then scale it down there... though that sounds evil. Nope the thin edges seem to be the issue in relation the the cube size itself.... so much for that.




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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 10:31 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Well, tried to use the Solidify modifier in Blender on my bevelled cube... could not get it so make the cube solid. Just noted that the walls of the cube are paper thin... this may be the reason the converter has problems.




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Insane Quaker
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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 10:59 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


A couple of more things you could check for:

Make sure all of the vertexes are welded (not sure what the command is in Blender) This could possible cause problems.

Make sure that the normals on the faces of your bevels are oriented the correct position (facing "out" instead of "in") I'm pretty sure that this isn't the problem, but it is always good to check. I can't remember the command in Blender to show face normals.

The model should only have one smoothing group set.

Past that I would say that it might be the exporter. One way you can check for sure is to export the model as an .lwo straight from Blender and import it into radiant (again, make sure the models is composed of triangles)

Also, lwo's, like ASE's will come into Radiant at exactly the correct size, if you have your units set up correctly of course.

Katsbits really is the go to place for Blender and Blender to Radiant tutorials : http://www.katsbits.com/tutorials/#blender

---------------------

As for your model being "hollow"... Technically all models are hollow, or more precise, they are created as a "shell" comprised of the outside facing polygons of the object. If you delete one face of your cube you should see what I'm talking about. Whenever you use any "CSG" type of action, or bevel, extrude, etc., the program will fill in (or take away) whatever polygons it needs to in order to give you the result that you are intending. It may "look" like a solid object, but the inside is really always hollow. Which is the way it should be for obvious performance reasons.

I'm not sure how you ended up with a separate inside shell to your model unless at one point you beveled the whole thing?

And BTW, one thing I have learned is that modelling is definitely worth your time!




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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 01:40 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Make sure all of the vertexes are welded.

Well... apparently a simple "select the complete object, go into edit mode, vertex select, and weld all vertices" does not exit. They seem to have a "merge 2 or more vertices", but that is pretty much what we do not want. I am not even sure you could see if vertices are off or not. The way the vertices react to movement they are welded. Did a test... did not help. But I watched a CoD Radiant tutorial where welding of patch vertices was a huge deal. So good thought.

Make sure that the normals on the faces of your bevels are oriented the correct position (facing "out" instead of "in")

Select the cube in object mode, then switch to edit mode, then open the property window via N-key, under Mesh Display turn on the Normals (3 icons). All mine are fine and pointing outwards. But it was good to find out how to show them.

The model should only have one smoothing group set.

Under Scene my cube does not seem to have any smoothing group set. But I may be looking in the wrong place.

Past that I would say that it might be the exporter. One way you can check for sure is to export the model as an .lwo straight from Blender and import it into radiant.

Test for tomorrow.

I know that my narrow edges seem to be the issue, "fatter" angled edges on a larger cube accidentally worked... though I did double the size of the bevelled cube and exported that, still the edges did not show. Apparently the edges where not wide enough. Oh well.

Katsbits really is the go to place for Blender and Blender to Radiant tutorials : http://www.katsbits.com/tutorials/#blender

I stumbled accross some of these... will take a closer look.

I'm not sure how you ended up with a separate inside shell to your model unless at one point you bevelled the whole thing?

I did... my first bevel application was paper thin... the second inner hull was from some experiment, and is not the normal bevelled cube it use... that is only paper thin in thickness.

To be clear, selected a cube in object mode, then switched to edit mode, and hit Ctrl-B... apparently this is the same as manually selecting all edges of the cube and the applying bevel. I used Amount type: Offset and Amount 0.04. And you are of course right, the cube was "hollow" to begin with.

And BTW, one thing I have learned is that modelling is definitely worth your time!

Well at least I am learning many modelling related concepts... and bit by bit the different philosophy behind all this. And it really really helps to be able to ask for advice. Thanks.




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True Nightmare
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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 07:20 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


AEon wrote:
Thank you... that works for export to Q3A .map... is there a import .map also available?


Installing above Exporter:
For those interested, the above exporter needs to be unpacked into:
    Blender\<version number>\scripts\addons\
creating the io_scene_map folder there. Launch Blender, then under File menu, User Preferences, Add-ons tab, find Import-Export: Quake MAP format, enable the addon, and do not forget to hit the Save User Settings button at the bottom of the window. You may need to restart Blender for the addon to take (not sure, I did). After you then create some primitives, select the ones you want to export, use File menu, Export, Quake MAP (.map) to save them in Q3 map format. In Radiant use File menu, Import... to load the primitives into the editor.


Been testing a bit, your suggestion for grid Scale 0.800 leads from a 1.6 sided cube to 160u in Radiant, so 0.01 = 1u.

I noted that the bevel tool actually hollows out the inside of the cube. Is there some way to fill out a hollow object in Blender? I.e. to later do a CSG merge and turn it all into one brush?

Update:
Created a 0.64³ cube in Blender (that is a 64³u³ one in Radiant), turned on Edit Mode, then via Ctrl+B (Bevel) manually set offset to 0.04, segments 1 and profile 0.5 (?), the rest unselected. This recreates "exactly" (dimensions and mostly in shape) the brush cubes in Radiant. But when importing this in Radiant, the brushes (now angled) that define all 12 bevelled cube edges have gone missing. I.e are not loaded and shown by Radiant. Seems these are sub-unit or something... for the larger 160³u³ cube it worked. Hopefully I did not set up something properly...
If there's one thing you need to wrap your head around and get right using Blender is to make sure you set Blenders grid properly; you want to be using a Display property "Scale" of "8" with "Subdivisions" "8" to match Radiant default grid spacing (see link) - if you use anything else (Object Scale) you'll not quite match up properly (especially when working offgrid). If you turn on snapping as mentioned above you're basically able to use Blender in a similar way to Radiant.

Setting the grid properly also means you should be able to bevel using 'units' - on a 64 unit block, if you type "8" after initialising Bevel, it'll bevel by that value (you can check accuracy by manually loopcutting the mesh "8" units from an edge and comparing to see if the bevel matches [it should do]). You do need to be careful with things like Bevel though because cuts can basically go offgrid and become nonaxial, on export those types of volumes stand a really good chance of getting buggered bad. Incidentally there's also a reference pack containing a few basic cube volumes that are helpful during construction.



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PostPosted: 01-08-2015 08:57 PM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Too many felines in this thread. :smirk:



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PostPosted: 01-09-2015 02:25 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Kat wrote:
If there's one thing you need to wrap your head around and get right using Blender is to make sure you set Blenders grid properly; you want to be using a Display property "Scale" of "8" with "Subdivisions" "8" to match Radiant default grid spacing (see link) - if you use anything else (Object Scale) you'll not quite match up properly (especially when working offgrid). If you turn on snapping as mentioned above you're basically able to use Blender in a similar way to Radiant.

Setting the grid properly also means you should be able to bevel using 'units' - on a 64 unit block, if you type "8" after initialising Bevel, it'll bevel by that value (you can check accuracy by manually loopcutting the mesh "8" units from an edge and comparing to see if the bevel matches [it should do]). You do need to be careful with things like Bevel though because cuts can basically go offgrid and become nonaxial, on export those types of volumes stand a really good chance of getting buggered bad. Incidentally there's also a reference pack containing a few basic cube volumes that are helpful during construction.


Funny how good comments arrive a few hours later than what I have learned reading up and trying out things. I read the other article about the grid, Blenders Grid settings, and was a bit surprised that GTKradiant is mentioned but that there is no infobox what would "simply" mention what to set up to get the grid working. If you have the time, updating that article might help newcomers find the info they need more readily. Another thing I would strongly suggest is to separate the article into two sections. One explaining all the info for > 2.49 and the other 2.49 <=... as a Blender newbie and reader the old versions interrupting the "v2.73" pertinent info confuses more than it helps. It makes the good article very hard to read, IMO. Hopefully my comment can be seen as constructive feedback.

Now about the grid... the io_scene_map Quake .map exporter Theftbot kindly made available, in the Export menu called Quake MAP (.map) seems to be from a "version of Blender that includes it". I am guessing from v2.49 (I have not been able to find the exporter on any wiki for download). I read that from v2.49 to the present v2.73 the grid is treated differently. Under v2.73 using a 0.64³ cube (Blender) will be exported as a 64³u³ (Radiant) using this exporter, no matter how you set up the grid. I did install a MD3 importer/exporter and found that the tree.md3 I loaded was much larger conforming to your 1:1 sizes, i.e. 64.0³ (Blender) = 64³u³ (Radiant). So my "problems" and "different" grid stem from the way the exporter works under 2.73.

Also downloaded and looked at your reference packs yesterday. And also loaded the test map (the two rooms in L-shape) using the .map exporter, exported one brush ;). The old exporter apparently simply does no longer properly work with 2.73 it seems. Thus is was not included, apparently.

Anyway, making the original cube 64.0³, should help avoid getting off grid. Alas chances for an update of the .map exporter seem to be zero, since it has not been updated in a very long time :(. I'll experiment with your 8.0 scaled grid and use the MD3 and ASE exporters and see how that goes.

I looked into the python script for the exporter, and found these hardcoded values:
Info below outdated:

Code:
# TODO, make options
PREF_SCALE = 100
PREF_FACE_THICK = 0.1
PREF_GRID_SNAP = False


If I scale down the output via
Code:
PREF_SCALE = 1

this might make it conform to your 1:1 settings. And possibly improve what brushes survive. Giving that a try, hopefully I can "edit" into python scripts in "real time" and Blender then re-caches them on the fly.

(My .64³ cubes would need a
Code:
PREF_SCALE = 10000
).




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PostPosted: 01-09-2015 02:47 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Correction... what I found above were the hardcoded defaults (the fallback values if you will), that are overridden and set by the values in the Blender\2.73\scripts\addons\io_scene_map\__init__.py. Luckily Blender automatically (compiles) and updates the python cache files, in \io_scene_map\__pycache__\. So .py source code changes work automatically. Thankfully.

So here the relevant code in io_scene_map\__init__.py:
Code:
    face_thickness = FloatProperty(
            name="Face Thickness",
            description=("Thickness given to geometry which can't be "
                         "converted into a brush"),
            min=0.0001, max=10.0,
            default=0.1,
            )
    global_scale = FloatProperty(
            name="Scale",
            description="Scale everything by this value",
            min=0.01, max=1000.0,
            default=100.0,
            )
    grid_snap = BoolProperty(
            name="Grid Snap",
            description="Round to whole numbers",
            default=False,
            )

To make it conform to what Kat mentions in his grid under v2.73, i.e. 1:1...

Code:
    face_thickness = FloatProperty(
...
            default=1.0,
            )
    global_scale = FloatProperty(
...
            default=1.0,
            )

Should work. The extremely small thickness of 0.1 may be one cardinal problem of the exporter under 2.73, set to 1.0 = 1u now. (Comes in handy to have programmed at some point in life and not shying away from actually meddling a bit of my own :). I kept avoiding the obvious and actually looking at the exporter code... sigh.).

New test and new cube:
Creating a large 64.0³ cube in Blender and bevelling that, and then exporting using these new settings. Hopefully that works. Setting grid_snap to True may be another thing to try. To get cleaner "on-grid" values directly, since Blender's values are close but not rounded to the unit "properly".

Hope!




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PostPosted: 01-09-2015 03:19 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


It works... wheee :)...

Now to set the thickness to 2.0 (that conforms with Blender's "Bevel offset 0.5" and Radiant's 2u corner cuts I did in my test versions... and the inside of the cube should be a simple cube hollow that is easy to fill in Radiant... letting me CSG Merge it into one brush).

Thanks Kat for sticking with me, and inspiring me to finally actually edit the source code of the exporter... well... on the very good side all the failings let me understand what Blender is actually doing... and to now know what to set up. Kat your grid at 8.0 let me check and find the proper bevel offset value... I wanted to see a "2u" wide "angled edge" (so 1/4 of a minor grid width) on the cube and that conforms to "bevel offset 0.5". Neat...

Now for the more complicated shapes... which reminds me I will actually need to properly learn to clip in Blender... ahem... I think I saw a tutorial that actually used a plane, positioned it to perform a cut? Ieek...




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PostPosted: 01-09-2015 05:26 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


They pulled the exporter from 2.71 because they thought on-one was using it so that last working version is in 2.70 (so 2.71 thru to the latest version don't have it - I don't know if it will ever return).

Depending on the exporter for *.map you *can* work the way your describe (using 'blender sized objects') but as you found out, you get into problems exporting *models*... it's highly suggested you work one-to-one because scaling models on export doesn't always work, often resulting in precision issues (sparklies, gaps and the like).

Radiant grid settings are covered in the articles I linked to, the one you mention above explains the grid itself rather than with any given 'tech'. But your point is acknowledged. So long as you grid snap in Blender and have your grid set up as mentioned, the resulting brushwork is correctly rounded so you won't get any precision errors. Just make sure that when you manipulate surfaces you snap to the 'correct' increments (i.e. snapping to "64" instead of "63"). Also to avoid or at least mitigate the thickness issue you amended to script for, when you're working don't using planes, use volumes, they exporter works much more comfortable with those (otherwise you end up with corrupt brushes (being to thin or warped incorrectly etc.).



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PostPosted: 01-09-2015 06:15 AM           Profile Send private message  E-mail  Edit post Reply with quote


Oh... was not aware of using volumes... hmm will check on that. The snapping to grid, for now I do not trust... I always check the properties of the object and manually set them to exact values... should they be off. But working with snap to grid will require more "practice" on my part it seems. It does not seem to be "idiot-proof" enough like in Radiant.


To show what I did and explain a few terms I used, that may not have been clearly worded, here a few screenshots of what I mean and want from bevelling. A chat with Hipshot showed that 3ds Max seems to interpret bevelling differently, and so does Radiant. So my "good" Bevelling is what Blender does in the pretty much the simplest case the tool creates. You can really whack out your bevelling if you want to though.

In Blender 2.7.3:
    Attachment:
    Blender Bevel 2015-01-09 14'14'44.png
    Blender Bevel 2015-01-09 14'14'44.png [ 145.26 KB | Viewed 334 times ]

So this is what I ended up with in Blender by adding a 64.0³ Cube, selecting it, then in Edit mode (this keeps everything selected (vertices, edges and faces apparently). Ctrl+B, to turn on Bevel... not sure what bevel, since there is a vertex, edge and face one using the same shortcut. Then under the bevel options set offset to 0.5.

This is what I understand under bevelling, this special case of clipping off the edges at 45°, no fancy other thrills.


In Radiant 1.6.4:
    Attachment:
    On-64-Cubes-and-Bevelling.jpg
    On-64-Cubes-and-Bevelling.jpg [ 371.16 KB | Viewed 340 times ]

I visually defined all the simple cases I mean, since as mentioned bevelling can become insanely complex. The Angled Edge, is just that a 45° cut parallel to the original cube edge. Easily done in the orthogonal views of Radiant. This does *not* yield the nice Tri-Corner, I only discovered by using Blender's bevel. The bottom right corner shows what I mean with "2u Corner Cut".

Top, left image: This is how the imported cube looks directly from Blender. As you can see, looking closer, the paper thin outside faces of the bevelled cube had become "thinkened" to 2u. This leads to a "weird" inside hollow space. I tried to simply put a 60³u³ cube into the hollow, to fill it up, but CSG Merge apparently wants no overlapping of brushes, at all. I seem to have confused that with how Microbrush 3 does it, the latter is more accommodating, IIRC. Or maybe it was simply wishful thinking.

Top, right image: Selected the 60³u³ cube, on a 1u grid, and then did a CSG Substract. This cleaned up the hollow inside of the cube. And the 60³u³ cube now completely fills the insides of the bevelled cube

Bottom, left image: Select outer and inner cube completely, and do a CSG Merge, this finally works, and yields *one* nice bevelled brush.

Bottom, right image: In top view, shows the nicely on-grid bevelled cube.


Simple, so what's the big deal?
Indeed, if I had imagined the nice Tri-Corner, I could have done all that in Radiant using 2 and 3-point clipping. But imagine two cases... look at a perfect cube from above, then make a diagonal cut via opposing corners (creating two triangles), in 3D these are two ramps. Now try to create correct "Angled Edges" on the diagonal. Or even worse (here I had to give up in Radiant) create a 3-sided pyramid with triangular floor (e.g. angle a plane and cut off the corner of a cube)... this "triangular ramp" has all sorts of angles.

My hope is Blender will create the proper bevelling for those less trivial shapes. And I needed the cube example to come out perfectly in Radiant... or all this would have been pointless.

In case you are wondering, will anyone ever notice all this extra effort... the answer... "probably not"... but I care and it also helps me learn to use Blender as a modelling tool... and a specific goal is always better, than "just create something in Blender".

Kat,
will look into using volumes next. You might give me a pointer on how clipping works in Blender, if you would?




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