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Old 02-02-2011, 03:51 PM   #1
mattcscz
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Default Low poly characters for games

hi guys, i was wondering if anyone has any good resources on how to make low poly characters for games, i was looking at the videos here but 3500 polys is quite high for my MMORPG, i can kinda build low poly characters but its the thing i suck at most and i always run into stuff like making various polys non-planar.

but yea any videos would be nice, thanks guys
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Old 02-02-2011, 04:06 PM   #2
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If 3500 polys is too high I think you should choose a different engine, a modern engine should be able to take at least 10,000 polys per (hero) character, which isn't as tolling as it would seem on systems running the game. Things you wont be looking at as much though, like swarm based enemies should still be fine at 3500
[/rant]

All it really takes to drop to that low level though is taking gout edges that you deem unnecessary, such as extra edges in the chest, or along the arms/legs. You can achieve a lot with texturing if you know what you're doing

I found this with a quick look, its for Max but if you have a basic understanding of the modeling tools in Maya you can make it work. It also has quite a few areas where you could take out unnecessary edges to suit it to your engine

http://www.bakaneko.com/howto/comput...er/page01.html
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Old 02-02-2011, 04:34 PM   #3
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thanks for the reply man, ill check it out!

the reason i asked for lower is becuase i want the game to be able to run on alot of systems, also with the low poly character in mind this means i can have more enviromental detail on stuff such as trees and particles. Also becuae it is a fantasy MMO its mostly outdoors, so this makes it tricky to occlude big areas so more stuff is constantly rendered.
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Old 02-02-2011, 04:52 PM   #4
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No problem man. When it comes to trees and environmental objects/terrain, you can get away with a lot with LOD models, you could have it set up so that the tree may be 10 polys at a distance but as it gets closer to the character it gets more detailed. Same with the terrain, if you do the terrain in blocks instead of one huge object, you could have LODs on distant terrain, which would achieve the same effect.

If you're able to use normal maps in the engine you're using this would also open up a whole new bag of tricks, although it would take longer to make you could get great results out of a very low poly house (for example) with a normal map, compared to a higher poly house without one
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Old 02-02-2011, 05:22 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by mattcscz View Post
i always run into stuff like making various polys non-planar.

I think game engines usually triangulate your meshes. If that's the case, then I don't think non-planar is an issue anymore because I don't think it's possible to have a non-planar tri.
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Old 02-02-2011, 05:32 PM   #6
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this is true, but in maya it looks ratber blocky 'faceded' (or somthing), i was looking at the link that was posted and with the part of the leg (link) he uses smoothing groups to take away the non-planar look, im not 100% what exxactly this is, is it adding new faces or just moving verts to make a more organic shape?
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Old 02-02-2011, 07:20 PM   #7
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That might just be softening the normals? Try selecting all edges > Normals > Soften.
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:30 PM   #8
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Yeah its the same thing.

Have a look for Mike McKinleys games modelling books too. he sometime appears on here when he's not busy

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Old 02-02-2011, 08:59 PM   #9
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thanks alot! this has really helped me, now my character doesn't look awful! haha i really need to watch more educational videos on maya becuase although i can model alot of stuff but i bet theres tonns of buttons and functions that would make my life easyer XD
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