Welcome to my 3DS Max UV mapping tutorial.
In this tutorial I will show you how to:
- UV map a multi-object model.
Create a hierarchy for your unit.
Move the object's origin (pivot points).
Export the fully working UV mapped model into Upspring.
- A 3D modeling program (i.e. Rhino, Wings 3D, or 3DS Max).
3DS Max (for this tutorial I will be using 3DS Max 7).
Texporter a UV plugin for 3DS Max.
.S3O Plugin for 3DS Max (this is for exporting .S3O files from 3DS Max).
Upspring an app for making .S3O units for TASpring.
Lets Get Started
- First, make your model in your favorite 3d modeling program.
Make sure that each object is joined as it's own solid mesh before you export it.
Now export each object that makes up your model as a .3ds
Start up 3DS Max.
Import each object that makes up your model into 3DS Max.
- Now click on the Select Object button
then select your base object
click on the Modify tab
then click on Attach List
- This will open the Attach List window.
In this window you will see the other objects you do not have selected.
Click on the All button.
Now click Attach.
This will turn all the objects that make up your model into one object that is ready for UV mapping.
- Now with your model selected click on the Polygon button.
Make sure there is not a check in the box to the left of Ignore Backfacing.
Now once again select your entire model.
- Now go to Modifiers / UV Coordinates / UVW Map
- Now go to Modifiers / UV Coordinates / Unwrap UVW
- Now open up the Material Editor with the M key.
Click and apply a default material by dragging it to your model.
- Now click on the Edit... button, this will open up the UV Editor window.
In this window all the faces that make up your model are flattened out. This way you can make an image that will become the texture for your model.
- Now go to Mapping / Normal Mapping...
This will open a window that will let you choose how to unfold your model.
- In this new window select Box Mapping, then click OK.
This will unfold your model as seen from all 6 sides.
- At this point you want to take the time to move around faces so that they are not overlapping. In some cases it is ok to overlap faces (i.e. if the faces share the same texture).
Down at the bottom of the Edit UVWs window where it says "ALL IDs" is a drop down menu that allows you to edit the faces of one object at a time.
Make sure to use as much of the space provided as you can, and when you scale the faces, scale all of them at the same time to avoid stretching.
Close the Edit UVWs window when you are done.
- With your model still selected, right click on Unwrap UVW and click on Collapse All.
If a warning window appears just click Yes.
- Now click on the Utilities tab.
Click on Texporter (if you don't see it there click on More... located near the top of the Utilities tab, if you installed it properly it will be located there).
Now choose your image size.
Make sure that the boxes to the left of Edges, Backface Cull, and Mark Overlaps are not checked (if they are just uncheck them).
Now click on Pick Object, then click on your model.
- A new window should open up with your UV map image on it.
Save this image, then close the window.
Later you can edit this image in your favorite 2D art program (this will be you model's texture).
- Now it is time to apply the new texture image we just made to our model.
Now open up the Material Editor with the M key.
Select an unused texture.
Go down to Diffuse Map and click on None, this will open the Material/Map Browser window.
In the Material/Map Browser window double click on Bitmap.
Find the new texture image we just made and open it.
- Now just click and drag the new texture onto your model.
If the texture is not showing up just click on the "Show Map In Viewport" button.
- Now it is time to turn your UV mapped model back into separate objects.
Click on the Modify tab.
Click on Polygon.
Select the part of the model you wish to turn back into a separate object (you can hold down Ctrl to add to your selection or Alt to subtract from your selection).
Now click Detach (this will open the Detach window).
- In the Detach window rename the object then click OK.
Repeat this process for each object.
- Now press the H key to open the Select Objects window.
Here you can see a list of all the objects you have.
Some times you might have a stray vertex left over from the joined model that will appear in the Select Objects window as an object (if you do, do not worry).
If you see any objects that do not belong you can select and delete them(it should not harm your model in any way).
- Now it is time to adjust the objects Origin Points (called Pivot Points in 3DS Max).
If you select the Rotate or Move button you can see where the selected objects Pivot Point is located.
To move the Pivot Point click on the Hierarchy tab.
Then click on Affect Pivot Only.
- Now click on the Move button.
At the bottom of the screen is a section where you can adjust the selected object's world coordinates.
When you are done adjusting the pivot points for each object click on the Affect Pivot Only button again to turn it off.
- Now it is time to put the model's Hierarchy together.
Click on the Link button.
- Now I click on the turret to select it.
Then I click on the turret again and drag the cursor to the base and release the mouse button.
The turret is now the child object to the base witch is now the parent object to the turret.
Any movement the base makes the turret will follow, but if the turret moves the base will not move.
This is a child parent relationship also known as a hierarchy.
Now repeat this process for each object in your model (i.e. the turret is a child to the base, the sleeve is a child to the turret, the barrel is a child to the sleeve).
- Now press the H key, this will bring up the Select Objects window.
As you can see our model now has a hierarchy.
Now close this window.
- Go to File / Export.
Give your model a name and select .S3O as the file type.
The S3O Export window will open.
In this window select the base object of your model and click OK.
You now have a 3DS Max UV mapped .S3O model.
You can now close 3DS Max.
- Start up Upspring.
Load your new model.
3DS Max works on a different axis then Upspring so you will need to make an adjustment.
Click on the Objects tab.
Select the base object.
In the X Rotation box type in -90
Click on Apply Transform.
- Click on the Mapping tab.
Under Texture 1 click on the Browse button and load your new texture.
Congratulations ! ! !
I hope this tutorial has been helpful and informative.