Jump to content

Recommended Posts

  • Content Provider

OK I've done another tutorial. This one is a little presumptuous unfortunately, but I'll try to explain if any questions are needed


I skipped over details that were covered in my first tutorial, but may be important here http://vpuniverse.com/forums/topic/1396-future-pinball-ramps-in-visual-pinball-tutorial/?hl=%2Bfuture+%2Bpinball (Future Pinball Ramps in Visual Pinball - Tutorial)



I screwed up the scale, you should scale to .019. If you follow the same steps for each piece of plastic, you can copy&paste the primitive in the VP editor and just import each mesh without moving it, and it will position correctly if you've scaled properly. In FP, scale everything in half (close enough for what we are doing) from your VP measurements. Then scale the individual objects in Blender by .019, and you should be golden. I texture in Photoshop but the same thing can be done in Gimp or other editors.


Then just rotate the X axis of the primitive in the VP editor by 90 degrees!


You ask why you would want to do this rather than use the VP ramps and/or walls option, and it's a little hard to explain. It comes down to personal preference, for example on my current WIP Verne's World, the plastics have transparent edges, and I could do this with a ramp, but then I'd have no depth and I'd need walls to give it depth (transparently colored lips) and it's a bit tedious. Each builder is different, but it's becoming apparent that this is the way VP table authoring is headed, and with any luck this method will be obsolete with a new version of the VP editor!


I'm constantly learning new things in the VP editor, as I'm fairly new to this I'm aware of the lack of documentation on some things. If there's anything you'd like a video tutorial on let me know, it won't take me long (if I know how to do it already!)


Here's an example of the transparent edges: 






You want to stretch the UV map to fit the plastics, otherwise you get distorted plastics images (blurry etc) so they should look like this instead of shrinking/stretching to fit like the ones I did in the video. Mental lapse



Link to comment
Share on other sites

After skimming through the video, I was going to mention this, but you corrected it here any ways:




You want to stretch the UV map to fit the plastics, otherwise you get distorted plastics images (blurry etc) so they should look like this instead of shrinking/stretching to fit like the ones I did in the video. Mental lapse"


What I do when I model anything really, is you get a good square/straight reference photo, take the image dimensions/image size and make a to scale flat plane in your 3D software, apply that image to the plane, apply a UV modifier and select "bitmap fit" to ensure it's not being distorted.  You now have a true to scale reference to work from, do this with your plastics images that you plan to use for the mapping, then after you've modeled it based on these dimensions and you apply your UV modifier, it should require very little stretching of the UV coordinates to match it and it should match your reference photo perfectly if done right.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Content Provider

Thanks Dark. I am not comfortable yet with mapping in Blender, but I know it can be done and would let me do this without stretching images in photoshop, for someone relatively new (I used to mess around with Milkshape a lot so that's the extent of my 3d modeling experience) I'm taking it one step at a time. Every table I do and every 3d object I use I learn something new. If I can figure out how to do that in Blender I'll update the video :)


I did the whole table the incorrect way, by scaling the images to fit the square uv map, and was getting the worst results when I remembered how stupid that was....then I re-did them and they look great, and a couple weeks later I did the video and went back to the wrong way lol.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...
  • 4 months later...
  • Content Provider

OK I've updated this, today I started to use this method, shaping the plastics in FP when I already had them in VP (icpjuggla made them) and I realized there was a better way.


Why make primitive plastics instead of using the VP10 walls, which are already great?

Well, using VP walls you have to use a global texture. This means for, in this example, the left slingshot is just a small part of a 1024x2048 texture. Yes you can get all the plastics on one image, but you're limited to that resolution.

With a primitive plastic, you can get a 1024x1024 texture for EACH plastic. This allows for greater detail, higher quality, and more subtle things like depth and contouring of plastic.


Here's a run down of the new method (assuming you already have walls in VP)

Make all the plastics are on one layer in VP, and show only this layer

Export the blueprint

Open the blueprint in Photoshop (or any free program that can function similarly)

Delete everything that is not the plastics, and make the plastics all black

Save as a PNG

Open Inkscape

Import the PNG into Inkscape (free vector software)

Trace bitmap as indicated (this is automatic!)

Save as SVG

Open Blender (free modeling software)

Import the SVG (you probably have to download this plugin, I really don't recall)

Go to the curve function and extrude to the thickness you want

Convert to Mesh

Select the plastic you want (make sure you select all vertices)

Press P to "separate" the selection from the entire plastic object (otherwise all plastics are one object)

Unwrap the plastic

Export plastic UV

Export plastic OBJ

Open UV in Photoshop (or similar) and make your plastic image. I apply a satin layer style to give it depth

Import in VP as normal and scale to fit.



Here's a high-res comparison between the two, the left one is the primitive I made in the video, the right side is the wall. The texture is a bit crisper (it can be even higher detail, I started with compressed PNG files for the plastic images) and you can get the depth on the sides and the edges if you want.




Here's a higher res comparison, left side is wall, right side is prim

Keep in mind I scaled the texture UP so it could be higher quality. When I get a higher quality PNG I'll re-texture them and post a new comparison picture




Please post any questions you have and let me know if this helps anyone!

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...