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Black Materials (importing animated models issues)
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AndrewBGS Offline
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Post: #1
Black Materials (importing animated models issues)
I have this annoying issue when loading objects sometimes:
The object gets loaded, all materials are blank (white - happens with most of the objects and I have to set textures manually, but I can take that), but however, the model itself is BLACK.
And changing or editing any of the materials doesn't change the blackness of the model at all. Any idea what might cause this and how I should get it fixed?
(This post was last modified: 08-24-2013 09:33 AM by AndrewBGS.)
08-23-2013 01:40 PM
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Pixel Perfect Offline
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Post: #2
RE: Black Materials
Sounds like it could be issues with the normals. Check the normals in a suitable modelling application (not sure if Esenthel has anything inherently for displaying vertex or face normals).
08-23-2013 02:28 PM
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gdalex Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Black Materials
Yep. In your 3D app, 3D to inverse the normals of your model
08-23-2013 03:13 PM
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AndrewBGS Offline
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Post: #4
RE: Black Materials
So I'm told it's not that. To be straight, I'm trying to use a medieval character base model from Arteria, say http://arteria3d.com/collections/animate...ar-knight.
The guy gets loaded, blank materials (as lots of models do), but he's all black as described above. The administrator/artist of arteria assured me normal vertices are not the issue.

So I'm wondering, has anyone here used any arteria animated model? For me none of the ones I tried seem to work well. The ones that DID load the textures were in .dae format, but there I got messed up animations. The FBX's have good animations, but this black material problem.
(This post was last modified: 08-23-2013 08:09 PM by AndrewBGS.)
08-23-2013 07:46 PM
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Pixel Perfect Offline
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Post: #5
RE: Black Materials
I have access to all of Steve's models, I'll try some tomorrow and let you know how I get on.
08-23-2013 09:53 PM
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Fex Offline
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Post: #6
RE: Black Materials
Try going into the Esenthel Mesh Editor->Mesh->Remove->Colors
08-23-2013 09:58 PM
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Rofar Offline
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Post: #7
RE: Black Materials
I've put those models into Esenthel without issues. I convert to ms3d first before importing though. I think I have put some in directly from the fbx formats with no problem too.
08-23-2013 10:04 PM
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AndrewBGS Offline
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Post: #8
RE: Black Materials
Pixel: Thanks a lot! I also have access to a lot, and I tried lots of things; Animated models are the only models I have problems with. FBX'es have this black problem, some models (but not all) have DAE format and load fine, but all animations are in one place and I can't use that in Esenthel, and dae model animations don't seem to work wwith FBS model animations. I'm really not sure what to do, or even if I'm doing something wrong. I'd apreciate if you could try out some things and let me know if and how they work out for you.

Fex: I'm using EE 2.0. Is there such an option in 2.0?

Rofar: so you got animated fbx models to work in Esenthel without any changes??
Also, that conversion to ms3d, can it be done using Blender? I'm a programmer myself, I know nearly nothing about model editing. But maybe that can help, who knows. Or if it's just my local problem, any idea what might cause it? (can't wait to get my new computer... if this adds up to my light point casting shadow problem I really hate my PC)

(by the way, thanks for trying to help me out here guys; I'm frustrated about paying for something I can't seem to use. The admin there is kindly trying to help me also, made a little progress, but not enough)
(This post was last modified: 08-23-2013 10:09 PM by AndrewBGS.)
08-23-2013 10:05 PM
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para Offline
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Post: #9
RE: Black Materials
I experienced the same issue (amongst others) with arterias models...

Indeed, if you have v1, go to mesh / remove / material blends & colors (one of them or both fixed the issue for me). If not, try to import them into a 3d app first, and look for diffuse / ambient values and set them to white. In some rare cases the black was indeed caused by flipped faces that were present in some formats while not in others. Though sometimes the models were all white because the specular value was too high (mostly from fbx imports).

If you deal with 3D content from arteria3d, dexsoft, thegamecreators, then a big help here is (in this particular order): Ultimate unwrap 3d/esenthel editor v1, fragmotion, milkshape3d, various modders converter tools, 3dmax/blender/andotherbig3dsoftware, ... though all you ever need are the first two, fragmotion is a must have if you deal with thegamecreators stuff.

Sadly, as nice as they seem to look in their static renders, arteria's models are hugely un-optimized and often chock full of technical issues like this, but inconsistency is their main theme I believe. ..Missing animations anyone? smile
(This post was last modified: 08-23-2013 11:58 PM by para.)
08-23-2013 11:57 PM
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Rofar Offline
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Post: #10
RE: Black Materials
I can't really say if I successfully imported any Arteria models directly from the packaged fbx. I typically load them up into Fragmotion and tweak the mesh and animations as needed. Then export to ms3d or fbx and import that into Esenthel. I know I tried various formats and the only one that seemed to work well was ms3d. I recall having issues with animations with the fbx format but it's possible I also had the issue you are getting.

I can certainly try the fbx import and see if I have the same problem you have. Let's see if Pixel tests it first.
08-24-2013 04:43 AM
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para Offline
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Post: #11
RE: Black Materials
.. scratch my previous comment about v2... you CAN easily fix it:
   
(file is KnightArcher.fbx from MedievalKnights pack)
08-24-2013 08:06 AM
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AndrewBGS Offline
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Post: #12
RE: Black Materials
Thanks for the help Para, indeed that does fix the problem.
There is a smaller problem too sadly; animations from the fbx model have the same length or something, because some of them end before the animation timer ends and the animation keeps the character still for half the time.

I will try using FragMotion as you and Rofar suggested, see how that works out.

You mentioned something about arteria's models being un-optimized, would you please care to detail? I know very little about models; what does optimisation mean in their field? About arteria, I mostly want static models from them and animals (the character will be replaced later on when my artist learns how to handle animations well). So should I worry about their models not being optimal? Anything I should do about it?
08-24-2013 08:13 AM
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Pixel Perfect Offline
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Post: #13
RE: Black Materials
Glad you fixed the problem. I had the same issue with the fbx import as it stood. I removed the vertex colour in Ultimate Unwrap 3D Pro first as I was unaware of that facility in Esenthel (thanks again Para smile ).

   

With regard to third party 'off the shelf' models I often find they need additional work. Things like occasional bad normals, removal of vertex colours, lack of provision of collision meshes to cope with things like stairs for example which may look very nice but subsequently cause issues with the physics engine as they stand.

Other issues are less easy to deal with such as inconsistent design and looks (door frame sizes differing greatly between sets of buildings for example) or missing animations as Para hinted at. I have some animated models that are missing Idle animations!!!

There is no substitute for having your own graphic artists and access to good 3D modelling apps. For us programmers using placeholder models; a utility like UU3D is highly recommended. I do find fragmotion invaluable too.
08-24-2013 08:41 AM
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AndrewBGS Offline
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Post: #14
RE: Black Materials
Ok, so I got fragmotion and I tried to handle arteria's base male character. I can't import the fbx (I just get an error message with no explanation) and importing the dae - which should have a single animation - doesn't seem to have any animation. Is there any tutorial that just tells me how to import something there and export it in something esenthel will like?

The only big problem I have to solve now is either split the dae animation in multimple separated animations, or trim the timing of animations of the fbx model. Either solution would make me happy, but I don't know how to do either.
08-24-2013 08:55 AM
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Pixel Perfect Offline
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Post: #15
RE: Black Materials
FBX fails with same error in Fragmotion for me too, I don't even have the DAE files in my version of the Knight!!! However, the X file loads and the animations look fine in that.

If the DAE file works for you but has a single animation track rather than the multiple then you can use the technique detailed here (yet another one I was shown by Para): Breaking up the animations
08-24-2013 09:12 AM
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