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Skjalg

Black Mesa Source

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I tried googling "why crazybump is shit" and crazy bump no good", haven't come up with any good critiques. So it falls on to Rick to post links that explain why crazybump is shit and how to properly do normal maps.

It's more about how people use it, a lot of people just slap an image in cb and call it done.

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Thanks for the crit, that was an old normal map back when crazybump was new to me and I thought it was the be-all and end-all of normal map production. I hadn't learnt anything about the highpoly baking process at that stage, so I was mostly reserved to the Nvidia plugin and crazybump for any of my normal map making needs.

I have however spent some time redoing that map this morning, how does this look to you guys?

I think I'll put the time into fixing up the outside normal map in a similar fashion now. I am afraid it's still mostly Crazybump filtered, though a little more care taken than just running a tweaked diffuse through.

Much better!

and yes, crazy bump is shit in the wrong hands, and a godly tool in the right hands.

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I tried googling "why crazybump is shit" and crazy bump no good", haven't come up with any good critiques. So it falls on to Rick to post links that explain why crazybump is shit and how to properly do normal maps.

firstly i never said it was shit, buddy said that, read.

secondly, crazybump is a fantastic tool and i use it at some point in all my normal maps because the alternatives are useless.

the problem is that people don't understand normal maps very well and think lots of information is good information. normal maps work by changing the normal directions on objects to affect how light and specular information displays. the purpose is to simulate depth information in the abscense of geometry to do it.

without a high poly mesh to bake the normals from you are left to use pixel information to do it, and this is generally based on dark=low, light=high and the gradients inbetween.

using a straight up diffuse texture will not work, because where you have a shadow or a highlight is not where the actual height information is. so when you open crazybump and run your diffuse through it you don't get an accurate normal map, you just get noise that barely reflects the actual desired behaviour.

so for 95% of normal maps people create they just end up with a lot of noise that does nothing to simulate a higher poly mesh, they just have something that looks noisy and call it done.

you don't need to bake a high poly mesh for everything, some stuff can be done by painting greyscale maps and converting them to normal maps, this works fine for a lot of stuff and saves you a lot of time, but unless your normal map actually gives your model something other than noise it's just a waste of textures.

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Well, DNF got released so BMS is next in line for "OMG ur dev time is so long wtfffff"

:-D

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What Rick wrote. When i use a photo source/diffuse for my normal map i remove shadows and highlights first, then greyscale it, denoise it if necessary, then i paint over additional height info (brighten the areas that i want to pop out, darken the areas that i want to look pressed in). For technical stuff with lots of hard edges or for some details i paint a heightmap from scratch.

I disagree that there are no useful alternatives to crazybump tho. In my opinion nDo > crazybump. Gives me more control and the normals have more fidelity.

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what i meant was that it's not like it's anything new or media pimpage, it's just stuff we've seen in your portfolio. i didn't comment on the art itself, just that we have seen it before. i should be more articulate. apologies.

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