Blender tutorials & Blender training
Content creation, game art production, models, textures, level design tutorials and training using Blender 3D.
Using the Blender tutorials and training available below, learn how to use Blender 3D for content creation and game development. Pick up essential skills for properly optimised models, efficient level design and texture making. In-depth, extensive and unique explanations of methods and principles you won't find anywhere else, seriously! Not just on using Blender 3D, but also the 'hidden' and less talked about core subjects associated with content and game development, all of if freely available to those looking for it.
Blender modeling tutorials ^
Tutorial on using Blender to make .map based levels (Quake format). Seven chapters cover scene and set-up basics, through to advanced information on optimisation (source file included).
Short tutorial on activating Blenders Add-Ons, optional tools and features that can be used for content creation, in this instance the Unreal PSK/PSA import/export tools.
Tutorial on the correct way to set up double or two-sided faces and meshes so they use different materials on either side. Mainly for Blender 2.5, this technique also works in any 'real time' environment.
Tutorial on Blenders units of measurement systems and their caveats when modelling 'real world' objects.
Tutorial explains some of the changes to the new version of Blender and where some important features have been moved that game developers often use for asset creation.
Understanding collision hulls is an essential bit of knowledge 3D artists need have when making custom 3D modeled assets for game modding or development. Learn more about the process with this tutorial.
An extensive six part tutorial on making a simple wooden chair to learn the basics of how to use Blender 3D (2.49 or below) for modeling content.
This tutorial discusses how to import files from Googles free 3D modeling application, Google SketchUp, into Blender 3D to allow further editing as part of the overall content creation process.
Another tool from Google that potentially make asset creation relatively straight forward whilst being based entirely on real world locations and buildings.
You don't always have to 'sculpt' with Blender 3D's sculpt tool, it's also a quite handy and a quick way to edit a mesh to make it 'wonky' and 'aged'.
Making custom models for UT3 or UDK present issues, one of which is getting smoothing to work to properly. The following tutorial explains a couple of ways to getting smooth groups to work on Blender models.
Although most scripts in Blender, installed or 3rd party, don't always need the Python API installed, some of the more complex ones do often reporting the classic "Python Path" error. This tutorials shows you how to set that up under Windows OS (XP, Vista, Win7).
Trying to make a custom sky-box but can't quite get there? Use Blender 3D and the available skybox sample file to quickly render out your own custom skyboxes with very little hassle, ready for use in games.
Social & Virtual World tutorials ^
Although the process of making products and items for Frenzoo is relatively straightforward, you need to be mindful of how a model should be properly prepared, exported and converted. Includes sample file available for download.
Part 1 of a two part tutorial on creating an animated pet for use in IMVU made with Blender 3D. Part 1 covers making the pet in Blender 3D and what needs to be considered when doing so before then going on to discuss more 'advanced' subjects that need to be considered.
This tutorial explains the steps required to make, prepare and export a model mesh to Cal3D, constructing the results in IMVU's Previewer tool for upload to IMVU as a scene or room.
How do you create transparency for your products and items in IMvu? Easy, use opacity maps. Their setup and use can be a little confusing so this tutorial highlights the things you need to know in order to get them to work properly.
Quite confusing the first time you try to "Make a Bundle" as it's it involves a number of steps that need to be done in order for a bundle product to be successfully created.
Tutorial going over how to make rooms and scenes for Frenzoo. Including correctly preparing the meshes and objects to export and converting for upload to the Frenzoo shop. Includes sample file available for download.
IMVU products built with Blender 3D can be easily converted and used inside Frenzoo, it just requires a little bit of clean-up and prep work.
Making content for Frenzoo using anything other than 3DS max requires a couple of extra steps when producing content for Frenzoo, this tutorial will show how that's done.
A 'quick & dirty' tutorial taking you through the essential steps needed to export a contents of a scene or series of objects from Blender 3D to IMVU, put together in the 'Previewer' tool. A template/sample file is available for download to accompany this tutorial.
A 'list' of common errors and problems associated with exporting meshes from Blender 3D to Collada and conversion to Frenzoo's efa format from dae
A page dedicated to some of the more common hints and tips for IMvu developing (content creation) when using Blender 3D.
Texturing related tutorials ^
Following on from the previous tutorials about creating normal maps, this tutorials covers some of the things you'll need to know and watch out for when using photographs to create normal maps.
Creating a leaf mass for use as a tree sprite can be fiddly and time consuming, there are a few steps that can be used to create a mask from a source photograph quite quickly.
Not all games treat Normal Maps the same way, especially when texture rotation is involved. As a result problems can occur when using them on models using tiled textures that have normal maps.
Although normal maps (or 'local maps' to give them their proper Doom 3 name) ideally should be generated by rendering an incredibly high resolution three dimensional object into 2D.
One of the more puzzling aspects of creating content for Doom 3 powered games (Doom 3, Quake 4 et-al) is DDS; what they are, what they do and more importantly, how to create them. This tutorial will walk through the process of creating DDS textures.
A lot of problems encountered when making textures for games are directly related to not knowing about a couple of basics. This tutorial discusses one of these, the 'power of two' rule.
A common misconception about DDS textures and the "unknown file format" error; they are 'proper' DDS, but 'special' which is why Windows has problems with seeing them.
A tutorial to help 'artists' (texture artists, modellers, etc.) new to parallax mapping understand how it works and the differences between parallax and normal maps.
This tutorial explains in further detail the process of creating a heightTemplate for passing through one of the normal map creation tools, mentioned in the previous tutorial (though not the specifics of 'how to use' the tools).
I though it might be interesting to add this info to the site. It was originally posted on the Map Center forums as part of the rock texture challenge by way of giving a brief outline/explanation.
idTech editing tutorials ^
Make maps in Blender 3D as models and export them out as *.map files that can be opened directly in to map editors like Radiant.
Covers the principles of texture blending in idtech 4 powered games. Model set-up, vertex painting and in-game materials to get texture blending working properly on models.
Tutorial explaining how to get custom made ASE models into D3Radiant or QuakeEdit, the steps needed to prepare the mesh and then export and load into Doom3Edit.
Lighting outdoor scenes when making maps for Doom 3 requires a different approach to normal indoor levels. Find out how to use 'parallel' lights to effect natural looking light in outdoor scenes.
You need a basic understanding of how to manipulate patch mesh to fully grasp the concepts outlined in this tutorial. If you don't know 'how to.. patch mesh' then click here an read that tutorial.
This is a over view of the methods and principles used to create the sample map shown below, kat1024. The processes and techniques involved can be used for modeling any map for Quake 3 or Doom 3 powered games.
An extensive tutorial showing Radiant based level designers what they need to know and understand when converting maps or brushwork into ASE models using Q3map2 compile options.
Make sure you can see, or get access to the top, side, front and 3D camera views. You'll need these views to edit the patches properly on all sides and see what you're doing.
Most common errors with GTK Radiant are a result of corrupt user and preference data. This tutorial explains how to avoid and fix these errors.
Most of the pics below are 'exceptions to the rule' on using DoNotEnter clip brushes as it's usage (the rules) usually applies to structures with flat walls and floors.
There are 3 model formats idtech 4 can use. *.ase, *.lwo and *.MD5. All these formats use smooth groups in one of two ways, this tutorial shows how to do that.
This tutorial isn't going to cover the specific technical details of using lights with Doom 3, instead it'll cover the general principles and what you need to have in mind as you work.
Explains what needs to be done to prepare and export custom LWO models from Blender to idtech 4 games. Includes material set-up, and adding mesh smoothing to exported models.
This tutorial is going to run through the steps you need to take so you're able to use Doom 3 Radiant ('D3Edit' or 'doom edit') to create content (maps) for custom modifications of the Doom 3 engine.
Tutorial explaining how level designers using GTK Radiant can and will be able make brush or patch mesh based terrain as part of the Mega Texture system in idtech powered games.
This tutorial is a follow up on the previous article about what you need to keep in mind when making a terrain in Doom 3 from patch mesh objects. This tutorial continues the 'optimising' theme.
Modelling tutorials for gmax ^
2D artwork was used on the meshes which meant using UVW map and and UVW unwrap. As this is a big part of the workload for the scene it's probably a good idea to run through the process.
If you're thinking of creating 'static' map objects for Doom 3 (doorways, crates etc.) they need to be in one of two formats; *.ase and *.lwo. Animated objects and characters in the Doom 3 use the proprietary MD5 format.
Using a gmax Max script it's possible to export models out from gmax as *.obj files so they can be imported into other 3D app's for further work.
VIDEO Tutorials ^
RtCW editing & miscellaneous tutorials^
Learn the basic principles behind better NPC behaviour by changing two core properties of an AI.
Tutorial explains how, using an entity chain, to set up and activate the props_flamethrower effect in single player levels.
There are a couple of ways to create PK3 or PAK files for games that understand the archived format. The following tutorial explains how to make a pk* files.
Right.... what we're talking about here is the walk-able trigger at the end of a level where you seem to be able to walk a couple of paces into before the next level loads.
I wrote this as a reply to a forum topic (now long since gone the way of the dodo) on the difference between 'trisouping' and '3 point clipped' brushwork and how that related to z-fighting in game.
Tutorial explaining a simple way to kill AI characters in RtCW single player levels without scripting by using a simply entity chain.
This RtCW tutorial covers using the correct target_smoke entities to make a steam jet effect in the single player part of the game.
Ok, the pic below shows the setting used for the 2 target_smokes', the only difference being one's 'black' the other 'white', the info_notnull targets and 'gravity' set on the lower one.
The following text is a collection of Questions & Answers taken from the Quake3World level editing forums before the big f.u.b.a.r. of late 2004.
Trackmania Nation tutorials ^
Learn the steps you need to know to start creating brand new custom tracks for Trackmania Forever, with the new 'Simple' editing mode it's easy to get up and running quickly.
Short text and image tutorial explanations to accompany the short video tutorials on how to create some of the lesser known and undocumented basic track shapes seen and used in Trackmania Nations; circle, oval, crosier and double circle... These basic track sections form the basis upon which further track editing can take place.