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Mobile/tintable/take image, How come?...
 
writerly
post Dec 1 2010, 2:15 PM
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I love the Moviestorm props I have purchased, but I get annoyed when many of them can't be tinted, or take an image or be mobile.
Would ticking those properties cause them to be larger or some other issue unbeknownst to the rest of us? The more flexible the prop, the better it would seem to me...
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lucindamc123
post Dec 5 2010, 5:41 AM
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QUOTE (writerly @ Dec 1 2010, 08:15 AM) *
I love the Moviestorm props I have purchased, but I get annoyed when many of them can't be tinted, or take an image or be mobile.
Would ticking those properties cause them to be larger or some other issue unbeknownst to the rest of us? The more flexible the prop, the better it would seem to me...
C


Since no one else answered you, I thought I would comment. We used to be able to go into the Modders Workshop and alter the properties on all the Moviestorm props to make them tintable and whatever we wanted, like making them movable but this does not seem to work anymore. I wish it did and I don't know why it does not work because it would be very helpful to have that function back again.


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Armanus
post Dec 5 2010, 6:42 AM
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That seems to be a recurring theme. Whenever someone discovers a backdoor way to get more flexibility out of MS, code changes end up eliminating it.


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Chris Ollis
post Dec 5 2010, 8:11 AM
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QUOTE (writerly @ Dec 1 2010, 02:15 PM) *
I love the Moviestorm props I have purchased, but I get annoyed when many of them can't be tinted, or take an image or be mobile.
Would ticking those properties cause them to be larger or some other issue unbeknownst to the rest of us? The more flexible the prop, the better it would seem to me...
C


Tintable:
Tintable materials only work well if the texture is very bleached or mainly white (a pair of white jeans for example). It does not work well on dark textures which in reality most things are, and would come out muddy and ugly.
The textures we make tintable are deliberately bleached and colour corrected to work well with the tint system this takes a little extra time on top of the other texture creation so if an object doesn't strike us as really requiring it for the purposes of why we made it, then we won't make one or tick the tintable tag.

User Image:
Like it or not, Moviestorm is aimed at a middle ground of user, people who want to make films but don't necessarily want to deal with mapping coordinates or poly counts. So when we think "this T-Shirt would be perfect for a user image" we unwrap the geometry specifically to as simple a mapping coordinate system as possible and set the required area to a separate material ID so that it doesn't effect the rest of the model.
To do this for every single object in Moviestorm would take forever, it would also stop us from being able to make use of various UV shortcuts and ways of maximizing texture space.
We could just tick the User Image box and let you deal with working out what on earth we've done with the textures, but that just causes headaches, but that would make new users think that everything could easily receive and imported picture of their dog and just work, which it obviously wouldn't and it would leave the model looking a mess, and ugly.

Mobile:
Again, Mobile is usually only tagged when we something logically should be mobile. I appreciate if you are making a haunted house movie then you may well want everything to be controlled by poltergeists, but seeing as our current mobile system works on the old car principal (slow start, follow a path, slow stop) I don't think that makes much sense. Until we have standard keyframed XYZ translation and rotation I think things being set to mobile tends to make a bit of a mess and highlight what I consider is a flaw in Moviestorm.

So to recap. We don't because the last thing we want is a load of really ugly Moviestorm movies and new user experiences. It is better to suffer a handful of requests for more to be User Imaged than people to be turned away.


And finally History:
In a lot of cases, the reason that some objects have some options tagged and others not is not down to the confused and tortured minds of staff, but simply due to the fact that a some of the options weren't available when that pack was made. Being an ever evolving base program this is always going to happen, and being a small team we can't always remember to go back and re-tag the thousands of props we have in stock.



And Armanus, if that is the case, it is clearly a deliberate fix to make Moviestorm better, even if it does sadly have a negative effect for a few people.


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lucindamc123
post Dec 5 2010, 2:32 PM
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I don't often make the props I make tintable because I use photo images for textures by photo wrapping now on the majority of the props I make and people can just change the image to change the texture as a texture will wrap around the entire image instead of tiling. As far as things being movable, well I wanted to make a Moviestorm chair movable because no matter what height I raise a chair to a character will sit in it and I could have them attach I believe to the movable Santa Sleigh. Also it could be used to get them to sit in movable cars. Well I do not know if they would stick to the chair or not but i think they should. I wanted to experiment with this mostly because the nav meshes just mess up my program so I can't use them and this is a simpler way of doing things.. They now will lay on the bed no matter what the height it is which comes in handy when i am making beds because I don't have to try and figure out the proportion of the bed I have made which is tricky.

I can see your point in not giving too many options to new users because it would be difficult for them but there could be more options in the Modder's Workshop because most of the people now using that have been using this program for a long time.

As far as things being mobile, adjustable, attaching to other items and puppets, it sure does not cause any problems in Iclone and you can do anything you want with anything in that program and it does not affect the operation of the program at all.


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Armanus
post Dec 5 2010, 3:27 PM
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QUOTE (Chris Ollis @ Dec 5 2010, 02:11 AM) *
And Armanus, if that is the case, it is clearly a deliberate fix to make Moviestorm better, even if it does sadly have a negative effect for a few people.


I'm aware of that. It's just a shame that so often it happens at the expense of losing some of the ways we can cheat the system to achieve certain things. I'm all for improving MS, so I'm not complaining smile.gif


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lucindamc123
post Dec 5 2010, 4:01 PM
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As far as props taking an image, the method I use with photo wrapping, where you use one image for the entire prop, works wonderfully and any image put in the place of that image looks great as they do not tile as usual textures do. also in many case there is only one or two textures for the entire prop and that makes it more efficient too. I have reduced some props I have made that originally had over 200,000 faces to 200 or 300 faces. Sure you can get some funny effects, for instance, if someone decided to put a pattern that isn't an animal texture on one of the animals Or if someone decided to use for instance an image of a sky and put it on a house I have made, it would just be a box with a sky pattern and not look like a house at all except for the shape. I don't often allow these to be tintable though except in the case where I used photo wrapping and used a photo texture that is just a pattern, not a photograph of an animal, car or house as they look great when tinted and take the tint very well.


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iceaxe
post Dec 5 2010, 6:03 PM
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QUOTE (Chris Ollis @ Dec 5 2010, 08:11 AM) *
So to recap. We don't because the last thing we want is a load of really ugly Moviestorm movies and new user experiences. It is better to suffer a handful of requests for more to be User Imaged than people to be turned away.


Chris, I'm a bit surprised to hear this. Surely it's up to your customers to do whatever they like in the software - if you're afraid we'll create ugly movies then you shouldn't have created Moviestorm in the first place; we all experiment, and not all experiments will be successful. Personally, I get a real thrill out using props in ways other than what they were intended for; for example the lanterns in Ruth.


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lucindamc123
post Dec 5 2010, 6:13 PM
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QUOTE (iceaxe @ Dec 5 2010, 12:03 PM) *
Chris, I'm a bit surprised to hear this. Surely it's up to your customers to do whatever they like in the software - if you're afraid we'll create ugly movies then you shouldn't have created Moviestorm in the first place; we all experiment, and not all experiments will be successful. Personally, I get a real thrill out using props in ways other than what they were intended for; for example the lanterns in Ruth.


I agree with you Iceaxe. Art is free and imaginative and you never know what you might think is ugly turns out to be a great movie. If they what to get rid of ugly movies on Moviestorm then why not take away the spam ones -- you know those filmed videos that people upload that don't use Moviestorm at all. And new users don't usually make great movies.


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writerly
post Dec 5 2010, 6:35 PM
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Chris, thanks for the great explanation of the hows and whys. I shall now stop grumbling...uh...about that one thing. SMILE
Don't get me wrong I LOVE Moviestorm and I'm happy to bash out my own props where necessary and 'ghost' your props underneath to get the animations working correctly.
Keyframe animation would be WONDERFUL. I hope it happens someday. That would make my life SO much simpler!
Keep up the GREAT work guys.
C
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Chris Ollis
post Dec 5 2010, 7:40 PM
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QUOTE (iceaxe @ Dec 5 2010, 06:03 PM) *
Chris, I'm a bit surprised to hear this. Surely it's up to your customers to do whatever they like in the software - if you're afraid we'll create ugly movies then you shouldn't have created Moviestorm in the first place; we all experiment, and not all experiments will be successful. Personally, I get a real thrill out using props in ways other than what they were intended for; for example the lanterns in Ruth.


Sorry, but you're taking one sentence out of context there.
By "ugly" in that brief recap I simply mean movies that make the author and the software look bad - not artistically different from what we intend, but actually bad/glitchy/broken.
We don't want users put off by simple errors caused by their not understanding UV arrangement and similar behind the scenes mumbo jumbo.


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rgr
post Dec 6 2010, 4:18 AM
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QUOTE (Chris Ollis @ Dec 5 2010, 08:11 AM) *
... snipped details


Chris, this was a great post. Very informative. And although I like to consider myself an advanced user who would be able to deal with the complications you outline, I would be wrong smile.gif I'm interested in all of the technical details, but I'm also very busy and very lazy. I'm glad we have a tool that just works.

It would be great if it were also easily extendable by people who were skilled like that, but if you have to choose between the two, I understand your choices.

regards,

rgr
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Ben_S
post Dec 7 2010, 12:18 PM
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Examples of why everything isnt currently Mobile+scalable+tintable+user image.

Mobile:
When we first made this an option, truely horribly bugs occured if you made a chair mobile and moved it when a character was sitting on it. This works a bit better now, but there would still potentially be problems caused by a character trying to interact with something that is mobile.
Scaleable:
Characters trying to interact with things that are not the default size can be nasty. We try to make anything that characters cant interact with scaleable though.
Tintable:
This one seems initially harmless, however, we use the alpha in a texture for different things, depending on which flags are set - if tintable is set, it is used as a mask for which bits are tintable; if any of the transparency flags are set, then it is used to show how transparent things are. I think there might be another sort of mask we use the alpha for too, but I dont remember quite what, at the moment.
User image:
Some objects are specifically designed to have user images on them - they have sections where the UV layout is mostly rectangular, so that when you put an image on them, you see all or nearly all of the image.
Other objects, though, have quite complicated texture maps - there are small bits of the texture that map onto specific areas of the object. Just putting a picture onto those objects would look all wrong. That is the sort of object we dont want to allow user images.

EDIT: Heh, should have read Chris' post first. Still, some of my reasons are different to his reasons.


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corthew
post Dec 19 2010, 3:39 PM
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QUOTE (Chris Ollis @ Dec 5 2010, 03:11 AM) *
Mobile:
Again, Mobile is usually only tagged when we something logically should be mobile. I appreciate if you are making a haunted house movie then you may well want everything to be controlled by poltergeists, but seeing as our current mobile system works on the old car principal (slow start, follow a path, slow stop) I don't think that makes much sense. Until we have standard keyframed XYZ translation and rotation I think things being set to mobile tends to make a bit of a mess and highlight what I consider is a flaw in Moviestorm.



I understood most of your reasoning but there were two points I don't get, and I think you missed the point of the question:

Why would "tintable" be left off just because in the opinion of the creator of a prop or clothing, it would not be a significant difference? Subtle differences add up in a scene where several people can wear the same outfit and not look identical.

Why would mobility be left off just because you don't think that object should move?

I cite earthquakes as an example when you would want things to move on set.

The question was, is there a significant limitation to having everything mobile and tintable, as in, software performance issues for those who do not choose to tint or make mobile?

If there are not such limitations what harm in ticking two boxes?


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lucindamc123
post Dec 19 2010, 4:04 PM
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QUOTE (corthew @ Dec 19 2010, 09:39 AM) *
I understood most of your reasoning but there were two points I don't get, and I think you missed the point of the question:

Why would "tintable" be left off just because in the opinion of the creator of a prop or clothing, it would not be a significant difference? Subtle differences add up in a scene where several people can wear the same outfit and not look identical.

Why would mobility be left off just because you don't think that object should move?

I cite earthquakes as an example when you would want things to move on set.

The question was, is there a significant limitation to having everything mobile and tintable, as in, software performance issues for those who do not choose to tint or make mobile?

If there are not such limitations what harm in ticking two boxes?



I make a lot of props mobile in my addons, but not all of them because it can drive you nuts when you are dressing a set to have everything mobile, especially when you go into director's view because you will start moving things around and creating paths you don't really want and then you have to undo it. Because I mostly use photo wrapping (one whole photo for the textures in a prop), making them tintable would not be that much of an advantage because you can just use a different texture image of your own. For instance if I make a backdrop of a city, making it tintable would just change the entire photograph to one color and you would lose all the textures in the original photograph. Now for clothing, it does work fine as long as I also make a bump map so that you still get the texture of the clothing. Otherwise all the details of the clothing, the belt, folds, shadows would disappear when you tint the outfit.


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Ben_S
post Jan 7 2011, 11:10 AM
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QUOTE
If there are not such limitations what harm in ticking two boxes?


The harm is in confusing people who expect that when they change the colour of something, it changes noticably, and who expect, that when they put a user image on something, it uses most of their image in a sensible way.

That said, I do see that it would be very useful to be able to have more options, when necessary, without having to go to the modders workshop to change things.

I just added a feature request today, to allow an on-set advanced material editor, that would allow the user to change any of the textures used (including Normal map, Emissive map and Specular map, rather than just the diffuse), and set the colours and flags (including the different alpha options).

As always, though, feature requests are not things that happen instantly.


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kkffoo
post Jan 7 2011, 11:22 AM
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That sounds wonderful Ben. I hope this one works its way up the priority list.


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writerly
post Jan 7 2011, 1:12 PM
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QUOTE (Ben_S @ Jan 7 2011, 11:10 AM) *
I just added a feature request today, to allow an on-set advanced material editor


Thank you, that's great Ben. Much appreciated. Hope it works its way through the system!
C
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kv
post Jan 7 2011, 1:44 PM
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That would be a great feature, thanks Ben smile.gif


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