T9A and future technology

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  • T9A and future technology

    New

    Hi all,

    If you got tagged, then at some point I saw you post about something to do with digital design or 3D printing.


    The world moves on and new technologies start to reach our hobby. The RPG community is a bit further embracing digital and 3D printing, but that just means more sources to learn from faster. I myself am trying to learn digital design and in good DIY fashion meet hurdles that take effort to overcome. A support group would be nice, also to check learned skills and observations.

    My hopes are to use this thread to combine community power for anything digital to final products such as 3D printing. Talk about problems we have and find solutions together. Show off your work, let us know about new better ways to do things and let’s support each other

    One topic to kick things off is availability and community needs. When 3D printing, STL files need to be stored somewhere. Where do you get your files from, what is a good place and how open/secure is that platform for creators?

    I also thought that it might be a good idea to start a 4 (or more) generals style of article series for The 9th Scroll to show how diverse the digital age is and that many of us work on different things. This might also include app and software support. Let me know if I should tag more people (companies?).

    In alphabetical order and probably by no means complete:
    @Adaephon_Delat , @Armazeroth, @brumbaer, @clorens, @Darguth, @draeth187, @durdin, @duxbuse, @Frumious, @Grouchy Badger, @Henrypmiller, @Hombre de Mundo, @infamousme, @joel127, @Just_Flo, @Kapten Kluns, @Karanadon, @kelvenmore, @Marcos24, @MikaelO, @ML_916, @mograine, @ninepaces, @setepenmentou, @ToDD, @Vulgarsty

    The post was edited 1 time, last by Little Joe ().

  • New

    Maybe for a bit of an overview, let’s start with an introduction


    I am on a journey to learn 3D design with Blender, while I am open minded about anything that can be done I like hard surface modeling best. In order to help myself show ideas to others better and to learn all Blender has to offer I want to make a decent short video by the end of 2020. My learning time will be at least this and next year. Progress is very good so far. Still, sometimes I struggle to find the right words to get the information I need. Currently work is on digital game assets with @piteglio, this helps me greatly to learn how to texture a design and hopefully gives useful results which is awesome. And I love working on a digital vision for the Kegiz Gavem in T9A.

    For collaborations I am most interested in people that like to take texturing to the next level with digital painting, 3D printers wanting to do test prints or give general feedback and a director for that movie, because while I am willing to learn basics, I suck at photography.


    What do you do?
  • New

    Good initiative!

    One thing that should be made clear from the get-go for anyone who's interested is that there's different kinds of 3D-printing. The classical method involves printing layers of plastic on top of one another. This has widespread use and the material is cheap but they have trouble printing small, detailed things like miniatures smaller than what you'd use for Ogres.

    The second method involve shaping liquid resin with UV rays which sounds like a sci-fi invention but these printers have become fairly affordable by now. The resin is more expensive than common plastic but in return, you'll have all the tools you need to actually print your own miniatures in great detail.


    If you're looking into printing a lot of miniatures, getting your own printer is a good idea. Printing things is a bit of a hobby onto itself and can be a lot of fun. If you'd just like to try it out and evaluate the quality or just have a few things printed for an army you can always reach out to a person with a printer or visit a store that prints things for you.

    So where do you get your hands on 3D models?
    I mainly use thingiverse. There's a lot of models there, all free to download and use privately and there's enough good hobby models such as terrain to last you quite a while.
    Of course, if you want to take things to the next level, try 3D modelling yourself. I've used Blender and ZBrush and can recommend the former.
    I've learned through an online course on Udemy. It can be a bit daunting at first but it's actually fairly easy to learn the basics. Any experience with common Adobe products like Photoshop should help as the menus and interface are a bit reminiscent of each other.
  • New

    Adaephon_Delat wrote:

    I am afraid but I am a complete newby when it comes to 3d texturing. But if i can help with anything else then just let me know (I am also no Video director or anything like that)
    Stick around and demand answers to your questions. This thread should be for all.

    Too often did I watch many videos that were rubbish and even more to just find the information I needed. Especially texturing with nodes comes to mind. :D
    I am also happily abusing this option in a way I do not see others do. For example my interest in texturing is the materials themselves. I want to sculpt with masks and need an easy way to just manipulate a few areas. Materials seemed to be the right thing, I needed to learn texturing to understand how to use it well. Could have skipped nodes if I could have just asked ...

    Tell us what interests you, we will probably be doing very diverse things and that on it's own is interesting.

    The post was edited 1 time, last by Little Joe ().

  • New

    Hombre de Mundo wrote:

    Good initiative!

    One thing that should be made clear from the get-go for anyone who's interested is that there's different kinds of 3D-printing. The classical method involves printing layers of plastic on top of one another. This has widespread use and the material is cheap but they have trouble printing small, detailed things like miniatures smaller than what you'd use for Ogres.

    The second method involve shaping liquid resin with UV rays which sounds like a sci-fi invention but these printers have become fairly affordable by now. The resin is more expensive than common plastic but in return, you'll have all the tools you need to actually print your own miniatures in great detail.


    If you're looking into printing a lot of miniatures, getting your own printer is a good idea. Printing things is a bit of a hobby onto itself and can be a lot of fun. If you'd just like to try it out and evaluate the quality or just have a few things printed for an army you can always reach out to a person with a printer or visit a store that prints things for you.

    So where do you get your hands on 3D models?
    I mainly use thingiverse. There's a lot of models there, all free to download and use privately and there's enough good hobby models such as terrain to last you quite a while.
    Of course, if you want to take things to the next level, try 3D modelling yourself. I've used Blender and ZBrush and can recommend the former.
    I've learned through an online course on Udemy. It can be a bit daunting at first but it's actually fairly easy to learn the basics. Any experience with common Adobe products like Photoshop should help as the menus and interface are a bit reminiscent of each other.
    Too much hobby for me right now. I did look into it. 3D printing seems to suffer from patents and China copycats for open source. Personally I like the powder printing technology, that needs a few years to get to consumer level with patents slowly becoming available for all.

    Shows that 3D printing evolves a lot slower than many think.

    Regarding terrain, what is the quality level you expect and what is the average?

    Blender to me looks like a tool for coding software, it has a similar structure. The only difficulty is that there is no fixed end product in mind. It is literally a blend of many software solutions.
  • New

    Hello,

    I did some 3d modeling in ZBrush and printing tests some years ago that went very well (a gobelin and an amazon). It was mainly a proof of concept to see what can be done.

    Unfortunately I have not done a whole lot more, because I have so many models to paint (and I bought a bunch more), which makes creating my own models a bit pointless.

    However, in the meanwhile I learned to model and sculpt with Blender. I find ZBrush too complicated for just creating models, so I switched to Blender now that is has very good scupting. Not tried to create a whole model yet, but that should be easily doable.

    Here is a scupting test (not finished), you can see it is easy to create models in Blender:


    What would interest me is:

    - Sculpt some models in Blender as practice (on request).
    - Make small tutorials in Blender 2.8 to help others.

    - I think it would be awesome to have a central repository of free 3d models for the 9th age, with separate bits you could assemble into any custom model. I don't know if that is doable, probably requires too much work but we can start with something small.

    Those are things I would like to do but for now I don't have much time.

    You talk about texturing? What is the link with 3d printing?

    The post was edited 1 time, last by joel127 ().

  • New

    Blender is nice, but I use Meshmixer and Sculptris, both are free and gives nice results when combining them.

    I use sculptris for "organic parts" and smoothing work
    I use meshmixer for tools and weapons and for prepare the mini for printing (make holes for use less material and reduce a lot the price).

    For mass printing I use 3dhubs and the price is really lowered when you make a good quantity (my 6 Amuuts were at 55€, postal fees included)
  • New

    joel127 wrote:

    Hello,

    I did some 3d modeling in ZBrush and printing tests some years ago that went very well (a gobelin and an amazon). It was mainly a proof of concept to see what can be done.

    Unfortunately I did not do a whole lot more, because I have so many models to paint (and I bought a bunch more), which makes creating my own models a bit pointless.

    However, in the meanwhile I learned to model and sculpt with Blender. I find ZBrush too complicated for just creating models, so I switched to Blender now that is has very good scupting. Not tried to create a whole model yet, but that should be easily doable.

    Here is a scupting test (not finished), you can see it is easy to create models in Blender:


    What would interest me is:

    - Sculpt some models in Blender as practice (on request).
    - Make small tutorials in Blender 2.8 to help others.

    - I think it would be awesome to have a central repository of free 3d models for the 9th age, with separate bits you could assemble into any custom model. I don't know if that is doable, probably requires too much work but we can start with something small.

    Those are things I would like to do but for now I don't have much time.

    You talk about texturing? What is the link with 3d printing?

    There are many links, this digital thing is all connected. That is why it is so interesting to see other work.

    For example, if you want to add fur or any surface texture, alphas are a way to go. Think of alphas like a stamp combined with the brushes you use for sculpting.

    Examples:
    Display Spoiler


    You can use any image, this is artwork by DracarysDrekkar7 and Karak Norn Clansman directly imprinted, this should give an idea of how complex you can go.

    Terrain sculpted in about 20 minutes with 3 alphas. Ok, including making the blank and doing the work to get it ready as a game asset it took me 2 hours. And I used Meshmixer to combine water and base.


    Blender also has options to legally get dollies right away, gender/race/ethnicity with a few clicks. It does need a few tweaks and it does dwarves really bad (MB-Lab). :D It is very much like MakeHuman, I suspect it is the same project.

    I use Meshmixer as well, Blender is far worse with boolean and it has a few functions that are great. I find it hard to learn to use though. Blender has a tool to test before I export but it is bad at fixes.

    EDIT: the height maps for textures are best to use as alphas, you make them using texturing software. For textures it adds an optical illusion, in sculpting you can add actual detail. When you go from a sculpt to a game asset you make height maps and normal maps from your high poly sculpt to combine with a low poly model.
    It is crazy how connected it all is.

    The post was edited 2 times, last by Little Joe ().

  • New

    Grouchy Badger wrote:

    im too dumb to figure out 3D printing
    :D

    What would you do with it if you could? Conversion bits to give miniatures a T9A feel would be nice in my opinion.

    A lot of it is done with software to prepare the print. But I admit that there are rules to design that I do not know of. I have a rough idea from traditional sculpting and stick with that mostly.

    EDIT: I like your YouTube channel.

    The post was edited 1 time, last by Little Joe ().

  • New

    setepenmentou wrote:

    Blender is nice, but I use Meshmixer and Sculptris, both are free and gives nice results when combining them.

    I use sculptris for "organic parts" and smoothing work
    I use meshmixer for tools and weapons and for prepare the mini for printing (make holes for use less material and reduce a lot the price).

    For mass printing I use 3dhubs and the price is really lowered when you make a good quantity (my 6 Amuuts were at 55€, postal fees included)
    Interesting, what makes Sculptris better for you?

    Holes because of resin printing?
  • New

    Meshmixer, interesting, I shall try it some day. Already this thread is pretty usefull :). I don't like Autodesk very much, but well, at least it seems to be free. MB-Lab looks cool too.

    Be careful if you use Makehuman or any other generator, the actual proportions of a miniature are VERY different from real life. You need to inflate the head, hands and feet a LOT, and make the arms/legs much thicker. Learned it the hard way.

    This can be done by rigging the model in Blender and scaling the bones.
  • New

    setepenmentou wrote:

    Little Joe wrote:

    Interesting, what makes Sculptris better for you?
    Holes because of resin printing?
    Better, I don't know, what I like in sculptris is the sculpting part and symestry mangement. for create heads/hands this is not as difficult as drawing them.
    Holes is for use less plastic than a filled model. This is hollowing the model
    I would do all of that with hard surface modelling (because I am better at it :D ), I know that sculptors do it by hand. I prefer the extra control and my laptop likes the low requirements needed. Blender has the X symmetry on by default, I find it annoying. But not hard to turn off. The sculpting got an upgrade for 2.8.

    Ah, ok. Meshmaker is way better at that than Blender.
  • New

    setepenmentou wrote:

    Meshmixer is powerful with some subtilities. I did egyptian dreadsphinx wing only using it
    very nice but it takes times


    In the end I put everything in pinshape in CC license, any guy who can upgrade my designs is welcome
    Looks good. :thumbsup:

    How would you want it upgraded? I did not know you could sculpt in meshmixer as well.

    This is the first time I used Blender to visualize an idea, all I could do was make screenshots because people refused to install Blender to 3D view it. :D


    I then decided that I had to learn properly to make a video and gave myself 2 years to learn. I made a few bits for the Kegiz Gaven homebrew such a these:

    Just hard surface, zero actual sculpting:


    This made me realize that many sculptors cheat on the wrappings. Sometimes knowing is bad because you start to notice things. :saint:
    That one needs coloring, if someone is interested.

    Hard surface with minimal sculpting for the wood:


    Blender screwed this shield up so hard on combining meshes that I looked for alternatives and found Meshmixer.

    Again just hard surface, many small objects make big objects. I struggled a lot with relative detail, so I set a few parameters I follow on each design now:


    For example this design was updated a bit to be more useful for wargaming. I still need to add hands to make them proper bits. I set minimal detail at 0.3mm now and mostly avoid sharp edges .

    And since I prefer terrain, this is my current project (about 4 evenings of work so far).


    Of course I am still a noob, so I forgot to do seems while it was still super easy, but it is just a matter of time and very good training to select certain things faster. Once I added more windows and a few more bits like the door, this house gets texture sculpted on select parts of the wall.
    It has a huge error that I fixed after the image, kuddos for the one that spots it.

    Once that is done I will be making more things to build a setting for a Kegiz Gavem short movie. I would be happy to have a look at your wings, what do you think needs improvement?

    The post was edited 1 time, last by Little Joe ().

  • New

    Wow, that's impressive hard modeling, above my skill level for sure, I still don't know how you made the wrapping, I would be interested to know :)

    I'm confused, are you trying to merge all different pieces together with a boolean operation? When doing my models I had tons of different pieces, never merged anything and it printed just fine.

    To paint your models, you need to UV unwrap them to give them texture coordinates, but it will be a lot of work with so many triangles, or you can vertex paint them.