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[dx9, XMesh] Modeling and Rendering (bilboard) tree

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I was reading around the internet on how to render a tree using billboarding style in directx by using a 3d Mesh exported to .X file format and got me confused on one single item.
I have learned that the mesh will be divided into 2 parts, one 3d mesh for the trunk and branches, and a number of transparent billboards (quads) of leafs.

now my question,
On the modeler side,
how would the artist model a tree in 3DS max that supports transparent Billboarding and export the mesh in .X format?

thanks.

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As for the format type, it depends on what your game engine's importer supports. Natively, DX 10 and lower versions support the X file format. However, DX11+ doesn't. There are 3rd party plug-ins for 3DS Max that will allow you to export in the X file format.

When modeling vegetation most large studios use SpeedTree. It's expensive and I don’t think there is a demo or any licensing for indies. Usually when I model a tree I start out with a cylinder and then extrude, move and scale till I get the trunk and branches the way I want them. I add the leaves with a separate material and my game engine imports this as a subset and allows me to tag them as transparent, thus setting the appropriate blending stage when rendering.

There are also several free (low cost) tree generators that let you quickly create trees and export them in the X file format. I think Tree[d] is a good one. Just make sure you read the license and usage terms carefully.

Good Luck!

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Hello.

How I do my tree is I model a trunk with branches I then create a quad that I put 3 different leaf textures on then I place all these leaves in 3ds max all over
the branches.

I then export the trunck mesh in its own .X file
I then do the same with the all the leaf quads.

I used the leaf quads as only position date for placing instanced leave on the instanced trunk .

The Idea is the same as the 2009 DX SDKs Instancing 10 example. the island and tree one.

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