Sculptris modeling tool

Discussion in 'External Tools' started by _Petroz, May 24, 2010.

  1. _Petroz

    _Petroz

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    Edit: This thread quickly degenerates into an unproductive flame war, I have summarized the information here to save the community the displeasure of reading the whole thing.

    Sculptris offers a great work-flow for creating low poly meshes from start to finish including textures. However there are some drawbacks: there are some unanswered questions as to the suitability of these models for animation. Also the auto-generated UVs are inferior to manually generated UVs.

    Pros:
    • *Extremely fluid workflow, easy to use.
      *Exports models into Unity compatible .obj format
      *Auto-generates UVs so you can paint textures and normals straight onto the model using your own custom brushes.
      *Builds meshes with tris which will have better lighting than quads.

    Cons:
    • *As with any sculpting tool you cannot use it to create flat planes for buildings, it's more suited to organic shapes.
      *Auto-generated UVs cannot be reused for other models like manually generate UVs can be.
      *Auto-generated UVs make it difficult to reskin a model.
      *Auto-generated UVs don't allow you to dedicate more texture space to high detail areas such as the face.
      *Models lack proper edgeflow, it is widely believed that this could be problematic when animating



    ------------------ original post ------------------

    Hey all,

    I came across a free modeling tool 'Scuptris'. I've been playing around with it a little bit and it's pretty simple and easy to use.

    http://www.tigsource.com/2010/05/22/sculptris-v1-0/

    It only exports to .obj which Unity can only import as models, without textures. I'm not even sure if .obj format supports textures. :?

    It is in alpha and it's worth mentioning I did experience a bug where some polygons went through a mesh. It says on the homepage:

    "I've released an alpha version that is available for anyone who wants to try it out. Be aware that it's an early build though, and it is known to crash and misbehave occasionally. Save your work often to avoid getting burned."

    I'd say it looks very promising and worth checking out.[/list]
     
  2. Tiles

    Tiles

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    Hmm, may i correct something here? :)

    Official Sculptris page is here: http://www.sculptris.com/index.html

    You may notice that it is Version 1.0. Not Alpha, not Beta, it is final :)

    Sculptris meshes are NOT meant to import into Unity. The polycount is in most cases much too high. Sculpt modeling usually works in Mid- up to High Poly range. For games and realtime applications you need Low Poly content. Sculptris can nevertheless be used in the art pipeline, for creating the normal map for example. That`s where you need the detail at your mesh.

    And yes, OBJ supports textures. Unity is sometimes in trouble to import/assign the texture for OBJ. Means you have to manually assign the texture afterwards.
     
  3. _Petroz

    _Petroz

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    Sculptris has it's own poly reduction tools. It has 'reduce selected' and a 'reduce brush'. It's sculpting tools subdivide polys creating a very high poly mesh but then you can manually reduce the poly count where the level of detail isn't needed. I made a character and it had 120k polys, i reduced that to 6k without losing much detail.

    It also includes a tool for bump painting directly onto the model for normal maps. So you don't need a high poly mesh to create normals.

    Thanks for clearing that up. I could see texture coords in the format spec but since it's a text based file format I couldn't workout where the texture data would go. It makes sense that it's an external file.

    I have since found the options for exporting textures and normals from Sculptris.

    Edit: I have successfully exported a model, texture and normal map from Sculptris and imported them into Unity.
     
  4. Tiles

    Tiles

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    True. But i stay with my opinion. A by sculptris created mesh is not meant to be used in Unity directly. The by Sculptris created topology is no go for animation. And it is no go for static stuff too. We talk about low poly content where you normally battle with every tri you can save. You would need to retopo the mesh. And then it makes more sense to directly model your low poly mesh in most cases. Without going across Sculptris.

    It`s another chapter to add more detail to an already existing low poly mesh though. And then it also makes sense to create a normalmap from the mesh. It makes absolutely no sense to create a high poly mesh with all details, reduce it to low poly, then add some bump just for the sake that the normalmap isn`t flat at all ;)

    But that`s just my two cents. In the end everything working is allowed. But i simply wouldn`t recommend your route :)
     
  5. _Petroz

    _Petroz

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    Granted, it will require 3rd party software to animate.

    No you don't.

    You don't seem to understand. It is only high poly due to the subdivisions from the sculpting tools. That doesn't mean it's a highly detailed mesh, you can clean up these extra polys in seconds. It is *much* faster to sculpt a high poly mesh and reduce it in Sculptris than it would be to create a low poly mesh with other programs.

    It makes more sense to sculpt the normals straight onto the model than to create a high-poly version just to generate a normal map.
    :D
     
  6. Tiles

    Tiles

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    You have never heard about Edgeloops, have you? :D
     
  7. silkyskeeter

    silkyskeeter

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    Wow, first you ask about simple obj exportation with no concept of the tri constraints of game development. Then you come back with this load utter ignorance like you know it all? But none the less, its better to educate you then it is to just bash your ignorance, so here it goes.

    If you do it the way you just said it makes for more work. Your way is fine for you if you are making a game in your free time with no constraints on time of completion but if you are working under a workload or trying to make the game as quick and as efficient as possible it is better to start off with a geometrically correct base mesh (which takes less time than sculpting a geometrically incorrect figure from a primitive,reducing the polycount then finding out later that you need egdeloops in the right places and end up having to retopologize anyway.)LoL since when does it take a long time to make a base mesh? (You use primitives, extrude and then connect the dots. Most Modelers can make a base mesh quicker than it took me to type this reply) You do realize those meshes are millions of polies large right? NO game engine can run that kind of polycount. Even on highend games, they try to keep their models around 20,000 tris or lower (In any game engine the geometry is always converted into all triangles). If you dont you will run into issues later on.

    Geometrical perfection is alot more important in animation than anything else. Without proper edge loops in the geometry of your mesh, unless youre animating inorganic models (which you arent, if you were you wouldnt need to use a sculpting program or it would be kinda pointless to use a sculpting program), you will run into issues in the first few minutes of rigging your mesh to animate. The geometry of any sculpting program ALWAYS needs to be retopologized with edge loops in the right places unless you are using it for still images or for 3D printing. So what if you can paint on normal maps? If the geometry isnt correct it will look like crap.

    Geometry it is also important in UV mapping, texturing, and bump/displacement/normal mapping which requires more than Scuptris. But that is a whole other beast all together...

    Unless you are making a game where the model never moves, floats around, and never encounters any other light source(s) (from any other direction) trust me you are gonna have to change the way you are planning on incorperating Sculptris into your game development process.

    note: (Zbrush or Mudbox does this process better but if you cant afford those then I guess Scuptris is a free alternative)
     
  8. _Petroz

    _Petroz

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    I started this thread because I found a new modeling tool which I found refreshingly simple and intuitive. I wanted to get some feedback from people thinking they would actually try out the software.

    Instead I got unsolicited advice from someone who, as far as I know, hasn't even tried using Sculptris. Granted I am no modeler, and both you and Tiles probably have greater knowledge than I in this area. However it's plainly obvious (even to me) that many of the criticisms aren't actually valid with regard to Sculptris. They seem like blanket criticisms against sculpting based modeling for anything used in game development.

    This is highlighted by the fact Tiles surrendered on all arguments except the one regarding edge loops. This one I have been researching myself and finding to be a somewhat valid criticism. I am not trying to win this argument, merely wade through all the bias and uncover some actual information. I don't find the antagonistic tone of your comments to be at all helpful. I do not want to put anyone off-side and if I have offended either you or Tiles, let me offer my sincerest apologies.

    The model I was exporting had 5500 tris, that is well within the budget of most games.

    Your phrasing suggests that you yourself are not a modeler. The implication you are making is that manual vertex manipulation is faster/easier than sculpting. My personal belief is that user experience which mirrors real life is generally more fluid. I wont speak on behalf of people other than myself, but with my limited modeling experience I found that within 10 minutes of using Sculptris I was significantly more productive than I was after a few weeks of using Blender.

    Even though I mentioned it several times, I will say it again: The vertex subdivision algo, that makes the sculpting so easy and effective, do increase the poly count significantly. That is why Sculptris comes with powerful poly reduction tools. In a couple of minutes I reduced the poly count of my model to 5.5k keeping all the detail I required so this is a moot point as far as I am concerned.

    I wont respond directly to the rest of your post because it seems much of it is based on misconceptions about Sculptris. I think this discussion will progress faster if I just write up a summary of my findings so far, and we can go from there.

    Findings so far
    The biggest benefit of Sculptris is in the simplicity and ease of use. You can create a low poly model then automatically generate UVs and then paint textures and normals directly onto the model. All this can be done without leaving the Sculptris tool. You can then export the model and textures directly into Unity ready to go.

    There are some major downsides worth being mindful of, and these are as follows:
    Messy UVs
    The automatically generated UVs look like a mess of triangles. This makes it incredibly difficult to modify the textures in any image manipulation software. Hand crafted UVs would also give the user great control allowing for greater detail on the face for example. This is not possible with the auto generated UVs in sculptris.

    Mesh Topology
    There will be no edge loops and this can be detrimental to the quality of animations, particularly facial animations.

    There are some people who are quite dogmatic about the importance of clean topology, but I would like to see a reasoned argument or demonstration of a model without clean topology animating poorly.

    I can understand that in the days of very low poly counts that anything but a clean topology would be completely out of the question. I will also concede that to get an equivalently good animation with poor topology might require a greater poly count; how much greater I don't know. I don't know if anyone has actually tested this to find out. I am currently working on animating the 5.5k model I have made as a proof of concept to see what, if any, issues arise.

    Being a programmer, this seems to me quite similar to debates had a long time ago about assembly vs. C. People said you can never write a game in C it's far too slow, everything must be hand coded in pure assembly. This was a long held view and some people stuck to their guns longer than others. Over time hardware improved and development speed was valued over performance and the industry moved to writing code in C and reserving use of assembly code for performance critical code. Nowadays most companies write most of their engine code in C++ with game logic in scripting languages. Unity is leading the way for rapid-development and in doing so willingly sacrifices some performance.

    Taking that into consideration, It's not overly surprising that this has met such staunch resistance. Game development is an ever-changing world, with new technology, new techniques and new tools. The most important thing is to question everything and accept new ideas. I'm not convinced that the dogma surrounding clean topology is still justified.

    Since Sculptris offers faster development and a shallower learning curve I think it fits quite well with the philosophy of Unity3D. Even if this comes at the expense of clean topology that needn't entirely rule it out of game development. I haven't heard any reasons why it couldn't be used for static meshes. Even for animated meshes it could at the very least have a place in rapid prototyping.

    -Pete
     
  9. silkyskeeter

    silkyskeeter

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    I was never being bias against the program and yes I have tried and still use Scuptris. -_- Even tho it still crashes on me randomly every time I use it. I never ruled it out as a game development tool. I only was giving feed back to your process. I never was excluding Scuptris with anything I said. Which is a big reason I said the last sentensce I said in that comment. Scuptis, at its core, is good for beginner digital sculptors. It is a good learning tool. But I do have to admit that I didnt know about the tool that you spoke of for reducing polycount.

    I never said that you couldnt use the meshes made by Scuptris. I said you will run into issues. Which, depending on the complexity of your game and/or game model, you will run into issues. Such as your textures not displaying (ingame) the way you originally made them. Which is just a price you pay for using a displacement application as a modeler equivalent. You will have issues with the way joints bend with out the proper edge loops. You will have issue the way lighting is displayed on and off your characters (the way shadows are projected onto your character and the way your characters shadow is cast on the surrounding environment (but with a mesh of 5k tris, unless you really messed up the geometry, should cast a fine shadow. but I just felt I should throw that in there as well) And because you cant make usable UVs with Scuptris, you wont be able to make any other maps than what Scuptris makes. Excluding alot of maps that are only created in image editing software.

    On the animation side of it, unless your character is barely seen or barely moves ingame, really depends on good geometry if you plan on doing certain things with you character. Again, Im not saying you cant animate bad geometry (because you can). To have the least amount of issues, its better to have good or perfect geometry.

    In the end it is all cosmetic and/or efficiency critiques. Its not like the character model is gonna double over on its self and/or explode if you dont have good geometry (then again it could if your script requires geometrically sound coordinates for scripted deformations, but that is another story all together) If you dont care about how your game looks or how long it takes to make the game then you are good to go with that process.


    I said Modelers because no I am not a modeler. Im just a guy on the internet that has been modeling and drawing for years as a hobby. I am not speaking crap I dont know something about. I only made an acct and commented to this post because I used to do a similar process (cept I used to do it with earlier versions of Zbrush) and because of that, it caused me to give up on a number of projects, models and games. Because once you run into enough issues with a certain model you lose the determination to continue on with the full completion of that model or anything that it is connected to. But by all means, continue on and experience the issues I spoke of (and others that I havent). Because, in the end, life is the best teacher.
     
  10. Tiles

    Tiles

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    Petroz, you have very bad manners. Your posting above is pure polemic, fulfilled with lies and nonsense and twistings, with the only goal to discredit us and to defeat yourself, ignoring all facts.

    Like your introduced lie that i never used Sculptris. You are of course wrong. Or like your assumption that i bash against Sculptris. This is again wrong. It`s a nice little Sculpt Modeler. I am just against your nonsense advice to use Sculptris to create your Low Poly content for Unity. And it stays nonsense.

    Regarding "surrending". That`s one of the mentioned twistings. I just gave up at you. You live in your own little world, and don`t listen to arguments nor to good advices. Makes no sense to go on with the discussion.

    Are you even aware that you, the programmer, talked to two graphics artists? About a graphics issue? And both told you that you are wrong.

    Your problem my friend, not mine. Do whatever you want. Everybody has the rights to make its own mistakes. I already know how to make 3D graphics, i do it since years.
     
  11. mikesgames

    mikesgames

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    I have it. It is rather cool.
     
  12. _Petroz

    _Petroz

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    Thanks silkyskeeter for your input, it is interesting to hear of your experiences. If the benefits don't outweigh the rewards then this is definitely a futile exercise. To minimize the amount of effort to discover this the 'hard way' I would like make a Sculptris model that fails as proof.

    I would like to create a single test case, and determine what would be considered success and failure before actually creating the test model.

    From your experience, what kinds of things caused the most/worst problems?

    Some things which I think may be tricky are:
    *animation blending
    *ragdoll

    From my understanding the primary criteria for failure would be glitchy polygons. What else is likely to go wrong?
     
  13. niosop2

    niosop2

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    Just figured I'd chime in with my sculptris experiences. I started using it and loved the ability to quickly flesh out a concept. It was much more intuitive to me than using ZSpheres was and I could quickly test ideas with having to worry about geometry.

    Of course the result of the sculpt is a horrible mess of triangle soup, so I wasn't going to use it in production. I tried a quick retopo of the mesh but it honestly wasn't worth the trouble.

    But since I like sculptris so much I really wanted to integrate it into my workflow. This is what I'm doing now:

    Sculptris for initial concept sculpts.
    Just use that sculpt as a reference to build a proper base mesh from scratch in blender. The surface sketching addon to 2.5 makes this quick and fun.
    Final sculpt and texture work in zbrush.
    xNormal to bake the texture and normals.

    So far I'm enjoying it. I have total freedom to experiment and find something I like, and building a quick base mesh once I know what I want is quick.
     
  14. _Petroz

    _Petroz

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    Thanks for the input niosop. It's good to hear you're enjoying sculptris.

    Have you tried using the poly reduction tools in scuptris to fix your triangle soup? If so did you run into any issues?
     
  15. niosop2

    niosop2

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    They work great for just reducing poly count, but it's still non-quad, auto-generated topology. If it's a static (non-animated) object, you won't need to do any editing later, and nobody else will ever have to edit your model, then it could be used as is.

    But, if anybody else ever has to edit it, they'll probably hunt you down and kill you. Proper edge flow makes editing the model SO much easier and allows you to control the deformation of the model when rigging/animating it.

    Plus, when you reduce the poly count you loose a lot of the detail. So it would work well as a high poly mesh to use with xNormal and a hand crafted low poly mesh to create your normal map.
     
  16. reset

    reset

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  17. _Petroz

    _Petroz

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    Yes I started that thread at Sulptris when 'edgeloops' were first raised in this thread.

    Making meshes in Sculptris, then using Blender to retopo will work fine, but it's a pretty clumsy workflow.

    If this is the way you're going to go, you would only do that for animated meshes. For static meshes, they can be used straight out of Sculptris provided you have reduced the poly count to a reasonable amount.

    As I said earlier in this thread, I'm still not convinced good edge flow topology with edgeloops is required for good animations. So far no one has provided an evidence this is the case but it seems to be quite a widely held belief.
     
  18. melmonkey

    melmonkey

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    Is a good edgeflow required for good animations, no. But if you don't have a good edge flow you better have a master rigger and weight painter on staff to build out a custom rig to account for all the really horrible deformations you are going to get.

    This is years and years of experience developing character rigs for games speaking here.
     
  19. legendarylugi

    legendarylugi

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    In my experience, horrible topology leads to horrible deformation, yes. Elbows, knees, fingers, all have all kinds of weird creases if you don't have proper edge-flow.

    The problem is, you got mad because you thought people were saying not to use Sculptris for games or Unity, when that wasn't the case at all. They were merely saying you would never make your base-mesh in it. It still has plenty of usefulness for games.

    Here's the thing. Sculptris isn't a modeling tool, it's a sculpting tool, like Zbrush or MudBox. Typically a lower-poly base-mesh with proper edge-flow is constructed in a modeling program, then they detail it at very high-poly levels in a sculpting program like Sculptris. Then they use this high-poly model to render normal maps which "fake" the detail for the base mesh. In this way you can get an extraordinary amount of detail in games without using nearly so many polys.

    However, trying to sculpt from a sphere to get your character for direct use in games is simply not workable.
     
  20. _Petroz

    _Petroz

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    Thanks for the reply melmonkey. Can you please be more specific about which kinds of animations, on which kinds of characters are the most problematic without good edgeflow?

    I fully understand what they were saying, what frustrated me is there was nothing to indicate it wasn't entirely based on dogma.

    Clearly you haven't read the whole thread. Sculptris allows you to output lowpoly meshes well within the budget games. The only issue remaining is the lack of edgeflow, which nobody has been able to propose a concrete case where it is required. If you are aware of something which requires edgeflow please share that and we can try it with a sculptris model and see how it goes.

    All I want is to find the truth. I have been told by many people that edgeflow is required. I am not denying that, all I'm asking for is proof.

    If someone says you cannot make X do a Y animation without edge flow, we test it and it fails, then I will then be convinced. If it is more involved than that I'm keen to learn more about the problem.

    -Pete
     
  21. legendarylugi

    legendarylugi

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    It's not about the poly-count. It's about controlling the structure of the model. That scructure is what allows you to do virtually everything you do with the character. A character trying to blink will be a garbled mess if there isn't proper topology to guide the animation, because the vertices are not placed and structured correctly to allow that deformation. It's only at very, very high-poly levels that topology for deformation becomes less of an issue.


    Sculptris isn't a modeling program. I don't have to "read the whole thread" to make that statement. I've been using 3d modeling applications for years, I think I know what is and isn't a modeling program. Sculptris does not allow any direct access to the topology. Even higher-end sculpting tools like Zbrush that DO allow that access don't consider themselves modeling programs, because that is not what the tools enable!


    And none of this is even Sculptris bashing as you seem to think. I use Sculptris, or rather have been trying it out recently, and have been pleased. It doesn't alter the facts about the program.
     
  22. Tiles

    Tiles

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    Haha, Petroz is still at its mission :D

    What would you do with a guy that permantently tells you that you don`t need the brackets while programming? And is asking for a proof where they are needed? And everytime you tell him that here and there they are needed, this guy points to the variables at the top: look here, no brackets! I don`t need them! Which starts the discussion again ...

    What would you do with such a guy?

    All of them! But i bet you won`t listen this time neither ...

    So stop asking, and do it. Nothing better than own experience. Try to animate. And you will quickly find out why a proper edgeloopflow is needed. No dogma, pure experience. Basic experience. You will stumble across that in the very first moments after you finished your rig and you try to animate it. The wrong deformations caused by wrong edgeloops usually makes you nuts in a fingersnap. That easy.

    Same for static meshes. First boxmodel a house. In Blender for example. Then sculpt a house in Sculptris. Reduce the polycount as much as you like. Compare the results. And then tell me again that it is a good idea to use Sculptris to create the basemesh for low poly content. :roll:

    Every artist here tells you the same. And you don`t listen. Your problem is that you don`t understand the answers because you miss the basics. That you still struggle with the given answers just shows that you better hire a graphics artist.
     
  23. legendarylugi

    legendarylugi

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    ^^^There's also the possibility that he's trolling.
     
  24. _Petroz

    _Petroz

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    At no point in this thread did I ask for advice from anyone but there seem to be plenty of people offering it. Your post is quite antagonistic I assume I have some how struck a nerve. I'm not trying to start a flame war, I want to better understand the issue.

    Firstly, no one has provided any reason why Sculptris models cannot be used for static meshes. I would expect sculpted models with even polygon density would be better for lighting than ones with edge-flow and containing quads.

    With regard to animation, if you are right, I want to prove you right. I would like to make a model with edge-flow and one without, animate both and demonstrate the problems so I can be convinced and provide a demonstration for others.

    I would like to determine a specific example of something which cannot be properly animated with a low-poly sculpted model with even polygon density. You mentioned something about blinking eye-lids, that sounds promising. Would this make a good test case?


    Edit:
    Granted, sculpting is only superior for organic objects.

    This is what is known as a straw man argument:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man
    FYI: I'm a strong supporter of human readable code and use more brackets than needed to improve readability.


    -Pete
     
  25. Tiles

    Tiles

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    And again you miss the point. You cannot leave the brackets away. The code will be disfunctional. A fact that is obvious for every programmer, even beginners.

    And similar to that, the topology story is obvious for every graphics artist, even beginners. But again and again you, the programmer, tells us, the artists, that you don`t need a good topology.

    I thought maybe by using this allegory you may understand what you are doing here. But i fear here helps nothing.

    This has nothing to do with your straw man. This is pure facepalm!

    And again you insult us to start a war against you and sculptris. Which is simply wrong. Your reactions are in best case the reactions of a little child. More like a troll ...
     
  26. _Petroz

    _Petroz

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    You keep trying to antagonize me for some reason, I'm not sure why. If you have nothing productive to add to this discussion please stop posting.

    At this point all I am trying to establish is an example of something which cannot be animated without edge-flow to serve as a demonstration. I want to have a simple and complete test-case agreed upon. Then I will attempt to test it, thereby proving or disproving the assertion you an others have made.

    -Pete
     
  27. Tiles

    Tiles

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    Funny one. Have you even noticed that you started a pissing game towards nearly everybody in reach of this thread?

    When productivitiy is the criteria, then it`s you who should stop posting. Your constructive input here so far was zero. Because your clue about 3D graphics is zero. All we have seen from you here was trolling and nonsense.

    To repeat myself: it is YOU that has to start to dig into modeling and animation. You don`t believe here anybody anyways.

    But just for fun and all the others that are willing to listen and learn, and to end this nonsense discussion here, create two quad polygons. Split them both into two tris. One of them in another direction. Add a little skeleton and skin the stuff. Now try to bend this upwards. Will it bend proper in both cases? No. Has this to do with proper topology? Yes. Quod Erat Demonstrandum. Basics ...

    Note, this tri case shown here is the reason why animators usually states that tris are evil, and is one of the reasons why they prefer quads for animation.

    The other important reason for a quad mesh is that a tri mesh simply has no proper edgeloopflow anymore that you could rig in a useful manner, even when the edgeloops are correct. Game meshes are a bit different here, because games needs triangulated meshes. But the triangulation usually happens after rigging then.

    By the way, have you noticed that Sculptris produces a tri mesh?

    What`s been shown at one edge here applies to whole edgeloops too. It`s enough to have one edge flowing into a wrong direction to get unexpected deforming results.

    This is even worse with sculpted meshes because the topology of such sculptshaped meshes has usually a mesh with same sized polygons everywhere at the mesh. And the edgeflow follows the world coordinates, and never the mesh flow. Makes it nearly impossible to rig such a mesh, let alone animate it in a useful manner.

    This same sized tri polygons is the reason why it is also no good idea to use sculpting for non animated stuff. You will nearly always end with a mesh that has ways too much tris compared to a hand shaped mesh.

    As a dumbass test, sculpt your mesh, reduce it as much as possible. Then retopologize it. The retopologized mesh is usually much smaller then, assumed you have at least a little bit of a clue about topology and edgeloops ...
     
  28. legendarylugi

    legendarylugi

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    You created a thread to discuss Sculptris in relation to game modeling, and we did exactly that. I have no idea what you're complaining about.

    Ah, but you just said we're providing unwanted advice. That's the problem, you're completely contradicting yourself. Your posts have essentially taken the format: 1. "Let's discuss this." 2. "Hey, don't give advice where it isn't asked for!" 3. "Explain this to me, I want to better understand the issue." 4. "Why are you explaining this to me? I don't want your advice!"

    These statements are mutually exclusive. They contradict one another. What kind of tap-dance do you really expect us to play?

    Well, it CAN be used for static models, it's just far less than ideal.

    Trying to shape your model willy nilly with no regard to structure and then reducing it tends to lead to ugly, unoptimised models. Also, regardless of reduction, you can save sooooo many more polys by creating a solid topological foundation for your model. If you just hit "reduce" over and over, you still won't get the proper results, because you have no control. The shape will get warped and ugly, or just "patchy" when it comes to detail.

    Moreover, *creating* the model is far easier with a modeling program, because you have control every step of the way. You can work from low-poly to high-poly on a level you can't in a sculpting program, adding mesh detail *exactly* where you want it, rather than automatically (and manipulated with a slider) as in Sculptris. This also leads to better optimization and use of polys.

    Proper, quad-based topology with good edgeflow means more detail with less polys. This takes a lot of stress off the engine, and it just LOOKS better.

    For animated meshes it means better deformation (with less work), and at really low poly level it's the ONLY way to get any kind of correct deformation, as at those levels no amount of paint-weighting will fix a dirty model.

    Except that they're not mutually exclusive. True, for games it's difficult to get even poly density given the low-poly level, but a reasonably experienced modeler will tell you to space your polys out evenly, roughly the same size when possible (while staying within reason, of course), while still maintaining good topology and edgeflow.


    He wasn't saying you don't use brackets. It's a metaphor for your adamant and inaccurate comments about modeling.

    And btw, it's only a strawman argument if there is distortion and omission of facts to make you look stupid. This is none of those, because if you knew anything about modeling, you know that it's completely accurate.

    And as for providing concrete examples, he provided one with creating a house. Try to make a house in Sculptris, or anything that requires flat surfaces or sharp angles, and tell me there aren't too many polys there. If you try to reduce, the corners begin to get soft, and pull back because there are no vertices purposefully lined up with the edges. But if you modeled the house correctly, those details stay crisp because the edges follow exactly where they're supposed to be.
     
  29. AaronC

    AaronC

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    The price is right. Might be good for trees etc.
    AC
     
  30. _Petroz

    _Petroz

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    I ask for a simple test case which would demonstrate the problem, you provide walls of text; most of which is covering old ground, taking a new tangent, or just outright abuse against me. I skimmed them enough to know neither of you know enough about what you're talking about to propose a specific real world case where a sculpted model will fail, which is all I am asking.

    @Tiles: Your example of a quad with poor topology serves no purpose. I have done some basic animations with Sculptris and I saw none of this, so once again you chime in with an arbitrary assertion which doesn't apply in this case.

    @legendarylugi: There is a significant difference between informing someone and giving them unsolicited advice. Especially when the advice is based on the very dogma my question is challenging.

    Since neither of you have any interest in advancing this discussion and would rather start a flame war, let me save you the trouble and just declare you both the victors. I have neither the time nor energy to waste on your petty bickering. May you wear this as the crowning achievement of your pathetic existence.

    I am going to update my first post with what information has been provided in this thread but wont read any more replies to it. Enjoy having the last word:
     
  31. niosop2

    niosop2

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    ROFL.

    It's great for all kinds of things. Quick doodles, testing concepts, detail work. It's not quite as good as ZBrush for high detail stuff because it doesn't do all the tricks that ZBrush does to allow you to have millions of polygons, but it makes much better use of the polygons you do have.

    I enjoy using it a lot more than ZBrush for initial sculpts, it just feels more natural, navigation is very Blender like (so I feel more at home with it), the "clay" responds more like I expect it to and it's very intuitive. Not having to worry about your topology and stretching issues is very freeing and doesn't jam up the creative process at all.

    If it had the ability to import normal maps, it would be excellent for final detail work as well (sculpt in sculptris, retopo in blender, bake normal map in xnormal, import low poly mesh and normal map into sculptris in paint mode and tweak as needed), but it's still pretty damn sweet even without that feature.
     
  32. legendarylugi

    legendarylugi

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    Wait. So even providing concrete examples doesn't count as providing concrete examples? His example of poor top (with pics) was pointedly specific. And what of my examples? Not as concrete, but still entirely usable.

    None of this is good enough for you to even TRY before you dismiss it? You just said his poor top example "doesn't apply" without giving any reason whatsoever.

    This is not worth the wasted effort. :roll:
     
  33. Tiles

    Tiles

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    [​IMG]

    Nope, you are doing it wrong ;)

    LMAO! And again he completely misses the point. That was the reason why i initially stopped responding. Petroz is simply not able to understand what we are talking about. I tried with explanations, i tried with examples, i tried with telling who of us is the expert here, and who the student, nothing helps. Even after half a dozen graphics artists that tells him the opposite he still thinks he is the only one who is right here.

    Petroz do us and you a favour, keep your hands away from 3D graphics. And hire a graphics artist instead ...

    By the way, your "I am too dumb to understand what they`re saying, so let`s turn this into a flamewar instead by editing the first post" attitude is more than childish ...
     
  34. legendarylugi

    legendarylugi

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    Funny how when you gave him that quad splitting example, he just said "nope" and didn't even try it. You gave him a clear example from which he could directly observe the problem, which is exactly what he asked for, and his response was basically "nope".

    I wouldn't say "stay away from 3d graphics" so much as "You'll never progress until you're humble enough to be taught." It's hard to fill a cup that's already full.

    It's not that we're trying to impose dogma. We'd be perfectly okay if it turned out our "assumptions" about topology were incorrect. The problem is that they aren't incorrect. This is a fairly young field, and it's always great if someone discovers something new. But usually those aren't people just coming in thinking they know all the answers. It's the ones who actually want to learn who, well, learn, and perhaps disprove preconceived notions. That isn't what's happened here today.
     
  35. Tiles

    Tiles

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    Wise words :)
     
  36. KHopcraft

    KHopcraft

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    If you do read this reply, it is not any bashing or stuffness.

    I just have a bit of advice. Keep all advice you get, and use it well.
     
  37. Unknown86793241

    Unknown86793241

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    I have seen a few great animations using sculptris models, I have also made some very bad animations with them. It can be done but I don't try much anymore. Once you reduce the model Armatures and weight painting to animate will never look right with out fixing the edge loops and i'm no good at that. I also feel in most cases you lose too much detail with the reduction tools to get the model under 20k - 30k poly count. I end up with a high poly model that has no detail and looks like BLAM when I animate. I waste too much time and hate the end result. Sculptris is a great easy to use tool, but I am sticking to blender. Maybe once pixelogic incorporates it into zbrush things will work out but then I wont be able to afford it. Petroz blender is what you want, they will have unlimited clay soon from what I hear.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2010
  38. Antonee

    Antonee

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    i'm late to the conversation but if i may... i had to break out the popcorn for this thread. very informative yet very entertaining to a noob blender user like myself :) I actually downloaded sculptris because i'm a big sculpting fan/can't afford zbrush person. how dose it compare to blender sculpting?

    I can see both sides of the argument here. i think some people sculpting is the fastest way to model and communicate your creative ideas in polygon form. Sculpting gives you more control and gets rid of all the menus and buttons that clutter a screen :) sure a developer is not going to play with getting a sculpt up and running in game but a hobbyist/indie dev may have the free time to invest to get it just right.

    I was thinking about sculpting out a monster for a unity game I'm working on instead of the conventional extrude method.... could i use sculptris for 3d concept art. can i import a 3d model into blender and just start box modeling a low poly mesh around it like you would a 2d image?
     
  39. niosop2

    niosop2

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    Sculptris is much better than Blender's sculpting mode at the moment. The unlimited clay work by Farsthary should get it to the same or higher level than sculptris once it's finally integrated.

    As for your question about using Sculptris for quick concepting, yup, it's great for that. If you want, do the whole model + detailing in sculptris and then bring that into Blender and retopo it w/ good topology. You can then use xNormal (or blender if you want, but xNormal seems to give better results for me) to bake the detail from the high poly sculpt to a normal map for your low poly retopo.
     
  40. Antonee

    Antonee

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    niosop, i'm really starting to love scultris. it has a similar feel to silo 2 :) very clean uncluttered workspace.

    niosop if i understand you correctly you are saying i can create my models directly in sculptris import to blender and retopo in blender without making a seperate low poly mesh? one other question: how do i import terrain sculpt from scultris into unity terrain. can i merge scultris terrain with unity terrain for a more organic looking terrain?
     
  41. niosop2

    niosop2

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    Well, the retopo process is just a method of creating the separate low poly mesh using the high poly as a reference. It helps ensure that your low poly matches your high poly closely enough to get a good normal bake.
     
  42. Antonee

    Antonee

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    This makes me happy because i love working in scultris and it's particularly good for modeling monsters and aliens as you may know :) thanks niosop.
     
  43. tsturzl

    tsturzl

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    You're an asshole...

    Leave the guy alone, he's trying to get input on using Sculptris, not information on why not to use it. If you don't like it, leave it be, its no harm to you.
     
  44. niosop2

    niosop2

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    Way to necro a thread...

    Did you actually read the whole thread or just pick that post out and respond to it?

    The OP wasn't trying to get input on Sculptris. We gave him input on Sculptris (awesome program, not particularly suited to generating final topology), which he didn't respond to very well. Doesn't sound like he was all that interested in actually getting input.
     
  45. ivanzu

    ivanzu

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    Now i have changed my mind and decided to get this free beauty rather than mudbox! :)
     
  46. niosop2

    niosop2

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    If it meets your needs, awesome, save a bunch of cash :) Sculptris can't really compare to mudbox in terms of features, but if you only need the features that Sculptris provides, then it's a great choice.
     
  47. ivanzu

    ivanzu

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    well i dont need much only some holes scratches and its fine.
     
  48. ivanzu

    ivanzu

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    Its so powerful and easy to use I ♥ IT
     
  49. ivanzu

    ivanzu

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    Does anybody have problem with importing OBJ.
     
  50. badmanjam

    badmanjam

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    Hi Petroz!
    How did you extract a normal map from sculptris? please help!