Game Tools | Maps Baker

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jameswatt3d
Hi Paul,
I've been trying to bake some rock pieces on to a plane, so I can use them in a particle system. The normals come out nice but I'm not getting any alpha channel generated.
I'm using the ‘Trace Mode’ as Surface Normal and I'm outputting Alpha from the generate property group.

I also tried the simple baker, and although I'm getting the expected results the alpha generated is not anti-aliased.

Any ideas?

James

Hi James,

This is what the Maps Baker generates for Alpha:


Is this not what you expect?

Paul
Edited by Ambrosiussen - July 9, 2019 16:26:13

Attachments:
AlphaBake.PNG (736.3 KB)

Paul Ambrosiussen
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lebref
Dear friends,

I'm looking for help:
I'm using houdini Apprentice and trying to find a process to generate diffuse/albedo baking.
If the baking part is ok we should be ok for a houdini production

I'm used to work on softimage then i'm a little confused now.

Here is the point:
I make a cube in a empty scene. Adding a Blue Sphere then using a sop maps baker .
- on the cube I put auto UV and normals plus a black color point .
- on the sphere i put a blue constant shader plus a red color point.


my wish is to bake the blue sphere on the cube, with a correct antialiasing as I want to use it as a mask for generate and create others stuff in substance.
or at this point I just get color point channel but it's not antialiased .
when I check diffuse , I only get a pink picture without any informations.

Could you help me on the good process ? Did I missed something?

Kind Regards ,
Fred

Hi!

Pink means that it couldn't find a texture. This tells me you were trying to render the diffuse map instead of vertex color
See image for how I achieved (what I think) you want. I also attached a .hip for your convenience.



Paul

Attachments:
MapsBaker_VertColor.PNG (613.5 KB)
MapsBaker_VertexColor.hip (268.1 KB)

Paul Ambrosiussen
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Hi Paul,

Thanks for your answer that's helpful, this is exactly what i'm looking for.

I open your hip file and when I click bake, it's not working on my houdini ( 17.5.173 Apprentice )
Maybe because my GameDev Maps Baker is still in Beta:
I'm on the 1.173 release, should I try the 1.183 version?

Actually I made the same process on a new scene with a cube and a blue sphere.

If I merge the black cube with the blue sphere then connect it to high resolution geometry input,
my color channel is only with the black color.

When I only connect the blue sphere to the high res input, I got my blue sphere on the color bake channel but it's not correct as you can see on the screenshot.

What is the difference between merging the black cube and the blue sphere instead of just connecting the blue sphere to High Res Input?

Secondly, is there a way to have an antialiased color baking ? You can see the second screenshot with a 512 map.
Without antialiasing it's not super sexy to show to my boss and for a production.

My pipeline is to generate masks for substance or mari.

Thanks again for your help,
Greetings,
Fred

Attachments:
2019-07-10_10h41_02.png (400.0 KB)
2019-07-10_10h50_27.png (154.3 KB)

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lebref
Hi Paul,

Thanks for your answer that's helpful, this is exactly what i'm looking for.

I open your hip file and when I click bake, it's not working on my houdini ( 17.5.173 Apprentice )
Maybe because my GameDev Maps Baker is still in Beta:
I'm on the 1.173 release, should I try the 1.183 version?

Actually I made the same process on a new scene with a cube and a blue sphere.

If I merge the black cube with the blue sphere then connect it to high resolution geometry input,
my color channel is only with the black color.

When I only connect the blue sphere to the high res input, I got my blue sphere on the color bake channel but it's not correct as you can see on the screenshot.

What is the difference between merging the black cube and the blue sphere instead of just connecting the blue sphere to High Res Input?

Secondly, is there a way to have an antialiased color baking ? You can see the second screenshot with a 512 map.
Without antialiasing it's not super sexy to show to my boss and for a production.

My pipeline is to generate masks for substance or mari.

Thanks again for your help,
Greetings,
Fred

As for why it isn't working.. Probably because I set the resolution too high. Apprentice can't render at that resolution.

The reason you need to plug in the black mesh is due to how the tracing logic works. It basically casts a ray outwards from your lowpoly mesh surface, and then back inwards. The back inwards part will therefore either hit the cube (when merged in), or the sphere (when not plugged in). I will add cage mesh support at some point, preventing you from having to do that. For now, what I can do is expose the distance of that ray. Please file an RFE here: https://www.sidefx.com/bugs/submit/ [www.sidefx.com] Same goes for anti-aliasing.

PS: Apprentice is not meant to be used in production.
Paul Ambrosiussen
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Hi Paul, thank you for your time.

I'm on Apprentice now because at my office they are working on Blender and I really expect that we should go on houdini for the task I'm going to have to do( Modeling and baking human body : a huge amount of muscles/fibers,etc ) .
So actually I'm only on trial version to research the good pipeline.

I should show them good reasons to buy or rent houdini
I think it's getting close but it's in need of antialiasing.

I was on Softimage and its rendermap engine is/was very easy and responsive to produce high quality baking on vertex color or on bitmap.
Usually I didn't need to customize cage parameter. the other options are similar to your game baker.

The main and very important option needed is the pixel border padding parameter and a quality parameter, something like 0=no antialiasing(super fast) to 3= very high antialiasing.

Last question(sorry if it's not on the good place, please tell me where to ask)

when i bake on houdini ROP> bake texture, and with games baker, I got a blurry bake: everything is blurry.
Do you know why is this happening ? I checked all and still don't know what i'm doing wrong.

Greetings from France,
Fred

Attachments:
bake_baketexture1_N.1001_1.png (123.4 KB)

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Ambrosiussen
Hi James,

This is what the Maps Baker generates for Alpha:

Is this not what you expect?

Paul

Hey Paul, thanks for the reply.
Ok, figured it out. I'm using 1.173 production build. If I update to 1.184 it works as you showed. Any chance you could update the production version?

Is there any way to anti-alias the alpha channel edge? I suppose I could render it double size then downscale it but seems a bit pointless.

Attachments:
Screenshot_1.jpg (186.8 KB)

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