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 Home / Game Design & Programming / Exporting Lightmaps from 3DS MAX Account Manager
Archive Notice: This thread is old and no longer active. It is here for reference purposes. This thread was created on an older version of the flipcode forums, before the site closed in 2005. Please keep that in mind as you view this thread, as many of the topics and opinions may be outdated.

December 25, 2004, 04:34 AM


I've just discovered the way to generate lightmaps with 3DS Max (render to texture, etc...). But for the moment, to get things in a file, I export my material-textured only mesh in a 3DS file (with texture coordinates errors in some rare places, it seems, perhaps 3DS is not a good way to export???) and then render-to-texture the lightmaps in channel 1, then export my light-textured only mesh in a 3DS file again and use a own made program to mix it together and make my own format with both texture layers.

1/ I can not believe that pro developpers use that time-expensive way to get all their layers of texture. Is there a way to make it at once (macros to export, render-to-texture, export again, etc...)?
In case of a macro solution, may I have the main part of the code (to make it in channel 1, as a lightmap... I mean define by macro the whole content of the render-to-texture dialog)?

2/ What would be a good (and documented) format which can content both layers and without mistakes? I mean render lightmaps to channel 2 and export both channels with their own texture coords.

3/ I know that it is possible to make own exporters, but that seems a little bit huge to implement... And anyway I guess it can not export directly lightmaps before they have been rendered.

I know it's quite huge and quite software specific, but I guess that a lot of 3D developpers use 3DS Max so that it concerns a lot - and a lot may be informed - out there.

Thanx a lot

Nils Pipenbrinck

December 25, 2004, 06:47 AM


I think the only practical way out of this problem is to write an own exporter. It's not that difficult since there are plenty of exporter sources in the sdk. Just use them as a boilerplate and add your own fileformat.


December 25, 2004, 10:03 AM

Okay I'll have a look, but what about the way to make lightmaps without completing the render-to-texture dialog each time and what are the 3DS Max plugin variables useed to get the channel 2 details (UV coords, texture file name, etc...) for the exporter?
Thank you

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