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mickey

what are these for? help!

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hi! hope you don''t mind coz i''ve a kinda stupid question here... anyway i''m confuse about the usage of softwares like 3dstudio max, gmax, maya etc., on games? i mean what are they for and isn''t it you''re gonna program using for example directx to make your characters, graphics, levels etc., and how do you put your works in these software unto your visual c++ programs? okey, i know adobe photoshop''s role, you use it to create graphics/bitmaps to be use in your games right? please correct me if i''m wrong. and then you use functions like blt to blit your bitmaps to the screen? But these other software how do you use them in your games? Please also explain how do you put your work inside your codes. Thanks!

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This is a really broad question. The general answer is that its a lot of work to do what you want to do. Blitting is a 2-d operation and you''re speaking in terms of 3-d stuff. What you have to do is get a document on the file format for .3ds, .lwo or whatever format you want to use and learn how the format applies to your software archituecture or how you can interpret it to apply to your architecture. There are many of these docs out there, and they are not hard to find. The long and short of it is that you have to extract the geometric data (vertices, normals, uv coords, etc) from the file and present it in a way that your application can understand it and display it. The same goes for animation. Look around a little, this topic has been done to death and there is a lot of code you can look at to get ideas.

"You are too useless. And now I must beat you." - English subtitle in a Honk Kong Movie.

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okey so in short it''s only optional to use these softwares? and could you please elaborate more on those file formats your''re saying, i''m sorry but i really don''t understand these things. provide a link if you can please, thanks!

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Yes, it is optional to use software such as 3dsMax and Maya. The file formats I'm talking about are the ones produced by the different software you listed. 3d Studio Max produces a .3ds file. That file contains vertex, normal, and many other types of information about whatever you just modeled in 3d studio, be it a car, a plane, or a character. If you didn't use a program like the ones you listed, you would have to hand code every single vertex of geometry that you wanted to display on the screen and pass it correctly to directx or opengl. This can be done procedurally, but its difficult. Just look in the resource section of this website or do a search on google for ".3ds file format." Seriously, there are so many resources on this stuff if you just look.

Think of it this way:

************
************
*.3ds file *
*(vertices)* --> 3D engine processes
*(normals)** --> the .3ds data by parsing -->Display the object
***etc.***** --> the file and loading data
************ --> into vertex buffer



"You are too useless. And now I must beat you." - English subtitle in a Honk Kong Movie.

Edited by - lunarss on November 20, 2001 7:46:45 AM

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wow! hehe i got the point, okey please last question if you don''t mind before I go on my own on these things, how does someone combine his work from these software unto his c/c++ codes? thanks!

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Mickey,

They answered that already, but we''ll clarify =)

Say you create a model of a car in 3D Studio Max. You save that model as a file when you''re done, usually with the extension .3ds. Now, that file has a format like was explained previously. You can research and find that file format here on gamedev.net or on any of a million web sites. Just do a search on google for "3D Studio Max file format".

Once you know that file format, you can use the information stored in that file to import it into your program to display the model. You have to write the code to read in all the vertices, normals, etc. Then process that with DirectX or OpenGL. You''ll have to start reading the tutorials here on Gamedev, Nehe, and Nexe (and many many other places) to get started.

3D studio Max isn''t the only program. Microsoft has an X file format, Maya has a format, and the list goes on and on.

Once you learn the basics of 3D modeling and 3D graphics, you can then research the file format of the model you created in whatever program, write code to import that data, and use that data to display your model. 3D models are nothing but a series of polygons that are arranged to look like some object. When you get down to it, almost all 3D objects are nothing more than a collection of triangles organized to form a bigger object. I think the classic example is how to create a cube from a series of triangles.

Does that make more sense? So, yes, you will probably need a 3D modeling software package. Look into MilkShape or Blender if you like cheap or free. Or, if you have lots of cash, look into 3D Studio Max, which is probably the most widely used modeling package. But if you aren''t looking to create models, only import them into your programs, then you can find their file formats on the web with an easy Google or any other search on your favorite engine.

Hope that helps.

R.

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***wow*** hehe thanks, rube and lunarss, thanks for helping me understand those things. i now know what are they really for

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