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BUnzaga

'Best' export for 3ds Max?

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Hello, I am fairly new to programming and 3d graphics. I have just done several tutorials online and out of books from my library. I was able to get my hands on a student version of 3ds Max, and I took CAD in highschool, so the layout is natural for me. In my most recent projects, I have been exporting objects as .x using the Panda .x exporter, and things have been good. I was mainly using a 3d IDE called DX Studio, and the .x format worked well with it. Now I am trying my best to branch off on my own, and learn C/C++/C# and with that openGL and DirectX, and everything else that goes with game programming. So my question is (finally): What is the 'best' export type I should be doing with 3ds max if I want to create objects and models and use them in either OpenGL or DirectX? I am leaning toward OpenGL, mainly because of the platform issue, but I am sure I will start out with DirectX, just because of the ease of use and amount of information available for it. In the past, I have had to loft textures, or use texture maps, and I wanted to know if there was an easy or popular export so I could use the native procedural maps in 3ds max, such as noise, smoke, radient ramps, etc. I would like to produce an object in 3ds max, hit export, and then import it into my game engine without having to first use a UV editor, or convert it to this format, and then import it into my game, etc, etc. It would also be nice to not have to hassle with animaiton issues, so if I have a character textured, and rigged, animated, etc in 3ds max, I would like to hit export, name my animation based off frames, and then I'm ready to go. So what have all you experienced is the 'best' export format for this?

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Well you probably should make your own 3d max exporter. I can see you have learned much, well there is one more thing you need to learn 3d max script I made my own exporter for my game so can you.

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I am using the .ase format, mainly because i can edit it later on and since it is human readable, i know what parts are in there and how to read them. The drawback is its size. A complex model i am using goes up to 200MB and beyond.

The .3ds format is not very well documented and exporting things other than pure geometry and animation is surely a problem. I had problems with mirrored geometry because Max 7 (at least) exported it as non mirrored and it ignores cameras, lights and helpers. Since it is a binary format, the file size is very small.

Check out the spirit parser from Boost for parsing ascii files.
Example:
Boost spirit ini file reader

h.

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