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Blender Question

BlueBerry Jenkins

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First, off. Ive been having alot of fun learning blender and all it can do. After hours of watching the vidoes learning just the basics and the tools Ive made a club. (I even made the cute little castle in the tutorial lol) Havent really messed around with the uv part yet.ive watch several videos on nodes and blender /cycle renders. My questions are.


1. I dont want to upload it without it being faced because we all know it being  faced is so much better. I tried to look up info on it only thing I found is just basically upload it with a Material on it is that correct. What I read was kinda old I think. 

2.Anything else I should do before upload that will help me out. Best place to ask about uploading and Mesh is second life we all know that!! 


3. If I upload it faced will it charge me per face? 


4. Blender vs Cycle since its going to be in a skybox type form does it really matter if it has no lighting? like If there was windows would watch hours more of nodes in cycle render. 

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Hi :)

Where to start ………………….?

As this is your very first building I would suggest a basic workflow something like:

1: Create you mesh building

2: Optimize the mesh for real time rendering, that means removing any of the vertices that are not actually contributing to the shape of the mesh.

3: Decide how you want to texture it, using baked textures, a combination of baked and textures created in a 2D editor, or will it be using seamless tillable textures that will be added in world. Then UV unwrap the mesh accordingly.

4: Create a physics mesh. Without a physics mesh you will not be able to walk around inside your building. This should be a simplified version of the visual mesh.

When you have the High LOD (visual) mesh and the Physics mesh completed you are ready to export them  in .dae (Collada) format and upload both to the mesh uploader.

Rez in world, set the Physics shape type to Prim  and slap on your texture.

Sounds simple, what can go wrong …….. ?

A lot. :smileysurprised:

 Linden Lab provides a parallel grid that can be used for testing your mesh creations before final upload to the main grid. Uploads are free on this Beta test grid.  I suggest you take advantage of this.

On second thoughts don’t even bother with the Optimization of your building at this stage. For the moment just aim to get it so you walk around inside. Later you can work on reducing the LI costs.

Just as later you can work on creating your own lower LOD meshes. :smileyhappy:

Most important is to start uploading and testing. Then like everyone else you will hit problems and one by one you will learn how to overcome them.

See this post from an earlier forum thread on how to get into the Test grid:

https://community.secondlife.com/t5/Mesh/Mesh-tricks-for-low-LI/m-p/3084592#M35547     Message number 11.


If it was my very first building, I wouldn't even be bothering about UV unwrapping and texturing at all. I would be to impatient  to see how it looks rezzed inworld ...................  :)


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THank you actually it does sound kinda simple with the info you gave really appericate it will help out alot on number 3 I was thinking a ao map. Thought I had to do something to make it faceless thou in second life. I was just going to bake it with the nodes and what not. then just upload it. The uv map looked simple enough to me. With the texture on it. Just be easier if it was faceless so I could just click on which ones I wanted.  The extra vertices there is a short cut for that I think. Setting everything to normal might help. You are right its exicitng to see how it will look been looking at through render alot trying to get the shadows right. Been watching so many videos for hours and days... lol heh...  

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Just to keep you from being too surprised ... There is no such thing as "faceless".  If you don't designate specific areas on your 3D model for separate materials while you have it in Blender, the model will have ONE face when you upload it.  You may define up to eight materials on a model to be uploaded to SL, each of which becomes identified with a face on your in-world model.  Generally speaking, it's wise to apply textures to each of those faces after you have uploaded the model rather than applying them in Blender.  That way, you don't have to keep uploading the model over and over each time you decide to tweak the textures (as you will, inevitably).

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thank you rolig assinging 8 different materials have to use common sense by floor and area then Sorta stuck on not being able to walk through the club trying to find some type of info that might help me out alittle since I was messing with the shadows and what not didnt have a celling just thought that would put it on once I uploaded it never crossed my life that second life would say no and make me not able to go in lol..

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yes probably.


But there are a couple of rules you need to comply with

1: If your mesh is a single mesh object then the Physics mesh must also be a single mesh object. (and visa versa).

2: The bounding box of your physics mesh has to be the same size (in the X, Y And Z axis) as the bounding box of the visual mesh.

3: Avoid any small or thin triangles in the Physics mesh. You don't need alot of details in the physics mesh , just enough collision surfaces for the avatar to collide with. Stairs can be a ramp. Windows can be filled in etc.


Export your Physics mesh as a separate .dae file 

When uploading your skybox open the Physics tab of the mesh Uploader and in Step 1 choose the From File option and upload the physics .dae file there.

Don't touch anything else in the Physics tab.

Calculate weights and fees as usual then when you have your skybox rezzed inworld edit it. In Edit panel open the Features tab. There change the Physics Shape Type option from the default Convex Hull to Prim.

Now you should be able to walk around inside the skybox.





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my club is pretty basic all it is is just a half wall splitting it with a few pillars in the back spiliting up for ads and a couple truding walls to give it a life like look with a stage I didnt really do anything to fancy Im pretty good at texturing in photoshop so I just wanted to give it a brick look was going to brush and do my thing on it. I think all togther is just 9 objects lol heh... 

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BlueBerry Jenkins wrote:

when I did stretch it out thou it became 137 prims for a regular size club with only 9 objects thou...

Yes, that sounds about right for a raw, non-optimized building of that kind.

There is no magic trick to reduce the land impact (we shouldn't call it "prims" when it's mesh btw) but a lot of techniques that each helps a little bit and together can give drastic improvements.

First you need to understand what land impact is. If you open the edit window for your building, you'll see a link called "More info". That opens a window with a list of number. Three of these numbers matter for the land impact:

  • Server weight: How much work it is for the assets server to find the items.
  • Physics weight: The complexity of your physics model
  • Download weight: The amount of data that needs to be transferred weighed towards an estimate how often the data will be needed.

These weights are estimates how much work the object gives Linden Lab's servers and connection lines. (There is a fourth weight, render weight or draw weight, that is an estimate how much work the objects gives our computers but LL doesn't care about that so that weight is not included in the land impact calculation).

If you want to optimize your build for the lowest possible lag, you want to reduce all four weights as much as possible but if it's only a question of getting the land impact down, you should focus on the highest of the first three because that is the one that becomes the LI.

Server weight depends on the number of meshes, prims, sculpts and active scripts there are in the linkset. Each mesh, prim and sculpt adds 0.5 to the download weight, each active scripts somewhere between 0.2 and 0.4 (0.24 if I remember correctly). If you uploaded the whole thing as a single mesh, there's no need to worry about reducing this weight. Ideally you actually want to icnrease it since splitting a big mesh into several smaller ones generally gives a lower download weight.

Physics weight depends mainly on the number and the size of the triangles in the physics model. Strangely, larger triangles add less to the physics weight than smaller ones and long, narrow triangles are the worst. I can't imagine the physics weight can get as high as 137 though so you need to look at the...

Download weight, that's nearly always the LI decider when it comes to mesh and the first thing you need to work on there, are the LoD models. What the LoD models are? In a typical SL environment you don't actually see many items the way the creator made them, instead you have different simplified versions called LoD models. Which LoD model you see, depends on the object's size and how far it is from your camera position. This makes sense because you don't see all the small details on distant objects and downloading and rendering everything at full resolution would have caused so much lag nobody would be able to use SL at all. You want to make the LoD models as simple as possible to reduce the download weight but on the other hand, you don't want them to be too simple. Ideally you only want to remove the details that aren't visible at the LoD model distances at all, in reality you will usually have to make a few small sacrifices in visual quality to keep the LI manageable.

There aren't any hard rules about what is acceptable quality reduction for the LoD models but no matter how you look at it, you do not want to keep unnecessary details and throw away necessary ones. The uploader can generate the LoD models automatically for you but it can't really know which details are the necessary ones so it always gets it wrong. Good LoD models are crucial both to the object's land impact and how it actually looks in Second Life so it's important to get them right and even a mesh newbie can make much better models manually than the uploader's autogenerated ones.

First thing you need to do is determine the switch points, the distances where the viewer switches between the LoD models. There is a formula for calculating them but the easiest way is perhaps to do a test upload to the beta grid and look at the item at different distances. When you check, make sure your viewer's LOD factor is set to 1. If you use Firestorm, you'll find it in the Quick Preferences, in the official viewer, set the graphics preferences to Mid. (The LOD factor is a way to "cheat" by overriding the switch points, forcing everything in the scene to be rendered in higher details. It's tempting to increase it of course but should never really be necessary and it adds a lot of lag.)

Once you have found the switch points, well, it's time to decide which details are needed for each model. Open your Blender file and create a separate dae file with the unnecessary details removed for each LoD model you need.

That's the basics. There's a lot more to it than that of course and besides, LoD control is only the first step to creating truly efficient SL mesh. But the first step is always the biggest one and if you spend a little bit of time making the LoD models, you should expect a much lower land impact and probably also a much better looking build.

From then on, keep experimenting, studying, building, learning. There are always ways to improve your building skills.

Oh, and if you want an advanced lesson in LI optimisation:



Edit: Rereading your original post I think I can actually tell you exactly how to make the LoD models in this particular case. If it's an enclosed skybox made as a single mesh, all you need for the LoD models are the outside walls since nobody's ever going to see the interior at a distance anyway. You have to keep one triangle for each face inside though because all LoD models need to have the same number of faces.

About your questions about Blender render vs. Cycles, I wouldn't really worry about the time difference since you only have to do it once and you can always take a break while your computer is working - or even get it running overnight. However:

  • Textures = Lag

That's how simple it is really. The textures add so much to the render weight of a scene that usually everything else about the fixed objects (not avatars, they can be render heavy anyway) are trivial by comparison. The basic rules are:

  • Use modern tileable textures whenever possible and old style custom baked textures when necessary
  • Keep the texture resolutions as low as possible
  • Reuse textures whenever possible

What "possible" means here is up to you but always remember this final Golden Rule:

No matter how powerful our computers become, they will never ever be strong enough to handle a virtual reality scene as well as we want them to. Creating good content will always be about making the most out of limited resources.

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