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 [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?

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jstrat74
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PostSubject: [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?   Fri 23 Mar - 17:30

I've seen some basic posts around the Internet that says you can export TreeMagik into .obj, import it into Blender, then export out to .dae and use the Multiverse COLLADA importer after that, but I cannot get it to work.

Anyone know. I've tried tons of trial-and-error.
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AWM Mars
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PostSubject: Re: [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?   Fri 23 Mar - 20:34

Maybe one other way, using one less element to the workflow would be to: Import as OBJ, into DeleD CE (its free for the full version), using this plugin Here, and export using the Multiverse export plugin Here. It works very well, without any errors. I have done this myself using OBJ's, and that works, hope that works for you
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jstrat74
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PostSubject: Re: [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?   Fri 23 Mar - 23:21

AWM Mars wrote:
Maybe one other way, using one less element to the workflow would be to: Import as OBJ, into DeleD CE (its free for the full version), using this plugin Here, and export using the Multiverse export plugin Here. It works very well, without any errors. I have done this myself using OBJ's, and that works, hope that works for you

Thank you. It worked terrific!!! Here is a tree that only took seconds to make in TreeMagik, and what it looks like. I did have to fiddle with the leaf texture, but it was quite easy. You can hand paint leaf textures in TreeMagik and even create your own leaf design to use as a brush. Then export it(it exports as a simple .tga picture) DeleD reads .tga just fine. And it treats each separate branch/leaf texture as a block image, so assigning the .tga to a new material in DeleD works great. you just assign it as an Alphablend material. On top of that, Deled keeps the leaf objects all as one group, yet separate from each other and the trunk/branches. So you simply highlight the leaf part and assign the texture and BAM.

Wow. this is awesome. The only problem is polygon count if you try to decorate an entire world with trees this way, but for now, it's a terrific option that works with great looking trees. Thanks again!
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Delurin
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PostSubject: Re: [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?   Sat 24 Mar - 5:22

If you group the trees into clumps an export them as one object you could probably get 10 or so of those trees as a group for the same render cost as one tree
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AWM Mars
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PostSubject: Re: [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?   Sat 24 Mar - 6:10

Instancing foliage, or page geometry using billboards in the distance, is a good way to use lots of trees. If you made say 4 different trees, use a Atlas texture containing all four trees textures, lay them out in some random grid, there should be enough variation to look natural, especially if you place them using random rotation and scale, for low overheads. DeleD comes with a random/easy placement plugin Here

For even a more natural look, set the groups of trees out in DeleD, use the vertice colour setting to vary the colour mapping with slight variations, then import the trees as small groups, setting them out in a variety of scales and rotation, with their group color mapping, overlap the groups, to create even more variation.
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jstrat74
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PostSubject: Re: [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?   Sat 24 Mar - 7:08

Oh yeah!? Thanks for the great-sounding ideas!

I'd like to first try the grouping-as-one-object method, mainly because I don't understand billboarding.

AMW: Do you mind explaining a little more how I would billboard. I'm very curious because TreeMagik has a built-in "billboard" feature to export as, so I'd like to try and compare results. Thanks. Smile

And just because I'm now having lots of fun with this, I'd like to share picture of trees I got imported. Smile Cheers!



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AWM Mars
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PostSubject: Re: [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?   Sat 24 Mar - 8:16

Sure..

Billboards are essentially just a single sided polygon, with a flat texture on it, usualy low rez version, with a unique attribute, the textured polygon face, always faces the player, no matter where they move to. Some engines will create billboard versions of your distant models/trees etc, and use mipmaps (decreasing resolution versions of the textures used), automatically. This comes under the general heading LOD (Level Of Detail). In the old days Shocked engines used Fog to reduce what was rendered onscreen.

I am not sure if Multiverse has the billboarding automatically set to LOD, or whether you have to setup billboards for distant scenery. Some engines will use Instancing, to produce multiple versions of a single model, whether a tree, bush, grass, rocks or even buildings etc The measured overhead is basically one element drawn from cache, with a single texture set. The downside is they can become samey. Colour mapping can overcome this to a degree.

In DeleD, once you have imported your model of the tree. Select the leaf polygons, then select Vertice mode. Group select a series of vertices, look in the Object Tab of the edit menus, down at the bottom is a selectable colour map button, clicking reveals a colour picker, along with alpha settings. Try adjusting those settings. Duplicate the tree, and make more adjustments to the colours and even Alpha. Make a group of trees, only changing the colour mapping and alpha settings. Now when imported into Multiverse, and duplicated, the overhead should be minimal, as the only variations will be the colour mapping/alpha settings, which is a couple of lines of text. What you should end up with is a wide selection of trees, that do not all look the same. The best fun can be had with Autum (fall) colours.
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PostSubject: Re: [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?   Sat 24 Mar - 13:08

AWM Mars wrote:
Sure..

Billboards are essentially just a single sided polygon, with a flat texture on it, usualy low rez version, with a unique attribute, the textured polygon face, always faces the player, no matter where they move to. Some engines will create billboard versions of your distant models/trees etc, and use mipmaps (decreasing resolution versions of the textures used), automatically. This comes under the general heading LOD (Level Of Detail). In the old days Shocked engines used Fog to reduce what was rendered onscreen.

I am not sure if Multiverse has the billboarding automatically set to LOD, or whether you have to setup billboards for distant scenery. Some engines will use Instancing, to produce multiple versions of a single model, whether a tree, bush, grass, rocks or even buildings etc The measured overhead is basically one element drawn from cache, with a single texture set. The downside is they can become samey. Colour mapping can overcome this to a degree.

In DeleD, once you have imported your model of the tree. Select the leaf polygons, then select Vertice mode. Group select a series of vertices, look in the Object Tab of the edit menus, down at the bottom is a selectable colour map button, clicking reveals a colour picker, along with alpha settings. Try adjusting those settings. Duplicate the tree, and make more adjustments to the colours and even Alpha. Make a group of trees, only changing the colour mapping and alpha settings. Now when imported into Multiverse, and duplicated, the overhead should be minimal, as the only variations will be the colour mapping/alpha settings, which is a couple of lines of text. What you should end up with is a wide selection of trees, that do not all look the same. The best fun can be had with Autum (fall) colours.

Thank you AWM!!! I will look into that, because I tried a test of the group-mesh, but when I exported it, it crashed Model Viewer and World Editor every time I tried loading them. Deleting the files fixed it.
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AWM Mars
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PostSubject: Re: [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?   Sat 24 Mar - 19:27

You may have to Merge the group of meshes in DeleD before exporting. In the edit menu, Select All, then in the edit tab, select Merge. After confirming, you now have a single model. Some rendering engines don't like unmerged (is there such a word) meshes.
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Delurin
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PostSubject: Re: [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?   Sun 25 Mar - 2:16

Generally speaking you should try to combine as many meshes as possible...Unless you know you are going to have multiple instances of the object with that part hidden.
But I am surprised the world editor and model viewer both crashed. Did they crash when you were loading that specific model or did they crash when you tried to start them? If it was when they started it is possible you had two materials with the same name which is a no go for the game engine.
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PostSubject: Re: [COLLADA Importer] Importing TreeMagik trees?   Sun 20 May - 12:46

I added a basic overview to the Wiki for using TreeMagik:

http://www.multiversemmo.com/wiki/Creating_Trees_with_TreeMagik

It'd be great if you had anything to add, it's pretty lacking in detail, no screenshots or step-by-step instructions. Smile
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