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Normal map optimization


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Normal mapping has arrived since I last looked. Been reading though threads about the various problems/ issues people have with their creation. 

So I was wondering how easy/hard it would be to import some stuff I created for Unreal Engine. The normal maps are generated either directly from Zbrush or using a standard high poly to low poly bake process in Max, all set to a tangent world space. The normal maps all work as expected in Max, Maya, Unreal and Unity. 

In theory, can I import these maps into SL and expect them to work out of the box or will they require some level of optimization?

Thanks.

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Second Life supports only tangent space normal maps in OpenGL style (x+,y+). No world space, object space normal maps.

If your maps are in tangent space, and work as expected across the 4 applications you mentioned, with each using a different tangent basis to encode normal maps already, chances are good that the maps will work in Second Life as well.
That depends highly on the models though, if they are baked with a synced, or unsynced workflow in mind.

If your maps are in object/world space, they need to be converted to tangent space with either xNormal, or Handplane. Preferably with the Unity3D tangent basis. Which comes closest to the SL tangent basis.

 

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