Most of the Help requests we get involve a small step missed in the middle of a process to take a design from conception to the catalog. Below is a diary style description of the production steps taken in the creation of a Furniture Product. Your experience may be different as the addition of multiple Animations, or many Meshes will mean additional steps will be added. We create this as a place to revisit while you are building your products and hope it helps as a refresher for even seasoned IMVU Developers:
Building a Furniture Product:
. After having conceived of our Furniture product we begin to build my Mesh in 3D Studio Max. We make sure to be economical with our Polygons because we know the fewer Polys in our finished product the faster it will load in the IMVU Client.
We name our Mesh
. If our product is going to include multiple Meshes, we make sure to name them all with the suffix “
We create a
in the Material Editor. This will allow us to apply multiple Textures to our Mesh while having all of them exist within the same Multi-Sub Object Parameter.
We import the
We have created and make sure to name them properly. We begin with the importing of the first Texture and end the imported name with a bracketed zero, .
Each imported Texture name after that is also bracketed, , , , etc. (i.e.
. We use the
tool to add shadows and depth to my Mesh by filling it with a darker color and erasing away the highlighted areas.
. We create a
and place it at the base of my Furniture Mesh, making sure that the Root Node axis (center) is at the floor level.
We merge an
Avatar Placeholder M
esh and its accompanying
Seat, Catcher, Pitcher
. We scale our Mesh to best fit the proportions of the Avatar, rather than altering the scale of the Avatar Placeholder Mesh.
. If we are going to include multiple
in our product, we either Merge additional Avatar Placeholders and Nodes, or Clone the one already in our model.
. Each Node needs its own unique name, so we make sure all of my Avatar Placeholders and Nodes are named appropriately.
We make sure to
all of the Avatar Nodes to the Root Node.
. If we are going to create a Mesh Animation, we build a separate Mesh that will later be Animated. We create a new Node and label it name.Animation. If our product is going to include multiple Mesh Animations we make sure to name them also with the suffix “.Animation”
. We Link the
to the Root Node.
the Mesh that will be Animated to the Animation Node.
We Animate the
only. Moving the Node will effect only the Mesh that is specifically Weighted to it.
If our Furniture product will include a section that we wish to disappear when the camera moves behind it (to allow visual access), we name them that same as we name our other Meshes.
and name them SeeThrough01, SeeThrough02, etc.
We Link the
to the Root Node.
. We Weight these Meshes to each of the See-Through Nodes.
We make sure that the
of all our Linked Nodes is correct using the Select Objects window in 3D Max.
We Export our Root/Skeleton as
file. If our placeholder Avatar Meshes are Linked to the Seat Node, we make sure to Un-check them during the Export process.
We Weight the remaining Meshes to the Root Node. If there are more than one Mesh, we Weight each separately.
. We Export each of the Meshes as a
. We Export the Animation as a
file. When the list of Nodes appears as part of the Export process, We make sure to un-check everything
those Nodes that are specifically being Animated.
If our product includes a Morph Animation, we Export it as a
When we Export our files we make sure to double check that all of our Textures are named and numbered properly within the Sub-Materials list. Often, problems with a finished 3D product in the
Create Mode Editor
can be traced back to a simple mistake in the naming and numbering of a single Sub-Material texture.
Create Mode Editor
we choose a pre-existing product that we wish to Derive from.
We start by Importing my
file in the
. Next we Import all of our Mesh
files in the
Within the Mesh TAB we start the process of Importing all of the individual Texture files, making sure that we include any Opacity Maps that accompany Textures that include transparencies making sure we Import the correct Texture files for each of the Materials listed in the window to the left.
If our Mesh includes
we make sure that the Vertex Color check box is selected.
If all or part of the Mesh does not include Vertex Paint, then we un-check the Vertex Color box. If not, the surface will appear black.
. We Animate those Textures that need Scrolling or Cycling effects.
We Import any Animation files,
. We make sure to Import the file, but also make sure that we are naming the Trigger name correctly (i.e. stance.Idle, etc.)
We Save As, and give our new
Project file a unique name, which by default will save to the
directory in the My Documents folder..
our product to the Catalog.
. In the
window we upload a Catalog snapshot that we have taken within the Create Mode Editor, using the Camera Tool. We can also take larger Ad images that can be used to better promote our new creation, or grab video to edit into a music video to post on YouTube and our Product Description page.