Getting great renders of your exported Automation cars

Discussion in 'Content Creation' started by shdevanski, Jul 17, 2021.

  1. shdevanski

    shdevanski
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    [Mods, if you think there's a better forum section to put this under, feel free to point me in the right direction]

    So Automation's photo mode is pretty damn good. The environments are great and the cars look superb. Automation makes some nice glossy jpegs, for sure, but we can do a bit better.

    I'm not going to be teaching you how to use Blender/3ds Max/Whatever here, and am assuming you are already familiar with them. Since you're here on a forum for modding a video game that's probably the case.

    e361460b-5ac4-4494-84d2-d7bfc0bc5f3f-image.png

    So anyways, if you look in the .zip file that Automation exports to BeamNG, there's a collada file just sitting right there in the open where anyone could take it.

    187cec14-e08a-4de1-a432-c7edab9a9647-image.png

    Import it into your 3d modelling program of choice, and, well it could use some work. There's only one each front and rear wheel, and components like the engine and mirrors will have to be rotated and moved into place. Some pieces may have to be scaled too, it seems Automation exports the default mesh for things like mirrors and axles without any transformations applied.

    fbf40730-7cc4-4a61-b2dc-80d552641a88-image.png

    There, that's better, but there's still plenty of work to do.

    c64b82b7-7755-4d2e-b0a2-8dbbd417b621-image.png

    The biggest challenge is with fixtures that extend beneath the surface of the bodywork, like grilles and headlamps. It seems Automation just masks where they intersect rather than modifying the mesh directly. You'll have to cut holes for them with booleans.

    0ee61b2d-2594-4ff7-a7f2-9950bfbe797f-image.png

    Materials don't transfer, BUT each part of the vehicle that's supposed to be the same material in Automation is given a unique blank material, so it's easy to start selecting bits and recreating the materials on your own. Anything that relies on an image texture (like grilles or carbon fiber) will have to be made from scratch. The tires are also blank because Automation makes them with Normal maps and those get lost as well. You can use the .dds normal maps from the same folder you found the .dae in, or make your own.

    RTU.png Speciale2.png Gazelle2.png Gazelle3.png

    After that it's just a matter of tweaking your lights, materials, and environment, and you have your own gorgeous model of your Automation cars to do whatever with!
     
    #1 shdevanski, Jul 17, 2021
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2021
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  2. Sithhy™

    Sithhy™
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    How did you manage to import the dae in Blender? Everytime I tried, it gave me a parsing error on every version past 2.79
     
  3. shdevanski

    shdevanski
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    I didn't have to do anything special. Did you extract the .dae from the zip first? That's what I do and it works smoothly. How old are the files you're importing? I've only done it with Automation files made after the PBR update.
     
  4. Sithhy™

    Sithhy™
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    Yeha, I guess that's what did it. I suppose they updated something as before the PBR update I could not import it, no matter what I tried
     
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  5. Cpt.Goéland

    Cpt.Goéland
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    I'm kinda new to using Blender and I was wondering how did you cut holes with booleans where the parts intersects?
     
  6. Agent_Y

    Agent_Y
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    Go to modifier properties tab, add the Boolean modifier to the part that you want to cut the hole in, select the "difference" option, then select the other part from the available list, and click that little arrow on the modifier name that has options and select "apply". Should work most of the time. You might want to google a modifier usage tutorial if it's your first time using modifiers.
     
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