Coming Soon: IMVU FBX Importer for Blender

September 10, 2017, 07:25:49 PM by kat

Over the past couple of months yours meowly has been helping the folks at #IMVU add support for FBX. Initially this has focused on Blender (due to ease of availability) but other app support is to follow. As an 'exchange' format, fbx makes it so much easier to make content for, and import it into, IMVU. More details to come, in the meantime bookmark the IMVU and video forum sections here at KatsBits for new IMVU content as its added. Below is IMVU's initial press-release.

Lapsed Creators are especially encouraged to take another look at #IMVU!

Hello Creators!

At IMVU we are eager to expand our Creator tools to provide more features and to make it accessible to more people. To that end, we are about to release the new FBX Import tool. By providing support for FBX files, you now have a way to import multiple materials, meshes and animations in one shot, rather than fighting with each and every component of your product one at a time. (.xmf, .xsf, .xpf, etc).

We have decided to roll out this functionality in phases, to get pieces of it to you sooner. This is provided IN ADDITION to the existing functionality and does not impact your old way of doing things. (Long live 3D Studio Max.)

The first phase is focused on FBX files that were created in Blender, a community-driven open source 3D creation suite that is driven largely by its users who are free to make small and large changes to the code base, leading to new features, responsive bug fixes, and better usability. Even better, Blender has no price tag. Our goal at IMVU is to ensure that Blender can be used to import clothes, accessories, furniture and rooms with a single import. For example, if you have a room built with 40 mesh pieces you can import all those meshes into IMVU in a single FBX instead of exporting and importing them one by one. This will save you lots of time as you test and revise your large IMVU product.

We plan to support more than Blender. As we get your feedback on the features and functionality we will be working to support FBX files that were created in 3D Studio Max, Maya, Sketchup and other tools. (In theory those should all work now, but we have found that most tools use this “standard” format a little differently. Feel free to try non-blender FBX files at your own risk.)

Even with Blender there is more functionality we think we should add to make the experience better. However, we want to get you engaged sooner, rather than waiting for everything to be done. Your feedback and input is desired. We have already worked with some of our Creators in our Alpha phase, with great success. (Special thanks to JazzKat for all his expertise and help!)

If you aren’t a user of the free 3D modeling program Blender, now is a good time to try it!

Here are some great Blender tutorials from IMVU Creator JazzKat to help get you started. You can also find them on the new IMVU Creator playlist on YouTube.We plan to release the FBX Import tool in a week. That gives you time to learn Blender and gear up for our new feature. At that time we’ll have more tutorials to show how the Import tool works within our platform. We hope you are as excited as we are.

How to scatter debris using Particles

May 11, 2017, 09:43:53 PM by kat

How to randomly scatter debris using Particles

Manually adding debris to environments is tedious and time-consuming (although offering better control). Instead debris can be randomly scattered across a given surface automatically or dynamically using Blenders Particle System. Read the in-depth "How to scatter debris using Particles" tutorial to find out.

Bake tiling (tileable) Normal maps in Blender

April 30, 2017, 10:57:28 PM by kat

Bake tiling (tileable) Normal Maps in Blender

Although converting images is a quick way to make normal map texture assets its best to use models where possible, especially for organic surfaces. Read the "Bake Tiling Normal Maps from Meshes" tutorials to learn about how to bake tiling (tileable) Normals maps in Blender using Blender Render (Blender Internal) and Cycles Render, and what to look out for.

Additional Reading
Baking Normal maps from Meshes
- Blender Render: Bake Normal Maps from meshes
- Cycles Render: Bake Normal Maps from meshes
- Blender Render: Bake Tiling (tileable) Normal maps from meshes
- - Advanced Options (includes Cycles Render)
- Blender Render: Texture Bake Normal Maps from High-poly meshes in Blender 2.49
- - Additional Options

Making normal maps from images
- How NOT to make normal maps from photos or images
- Making normal maps from photographs
- Manually Enhancing Normal maps generated from images or photographs
- Make a girder Truss support Normal map from an image
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