PBR is cool and all, but what does adding it to liveries/skins do?

Discussion in 'Content Creation' started by mrwallace888, Jan 12, 2022.

  1. mrwallace888

    mrwallace888
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    I've been wondering this for a while now. I've seen people asking livery modders to convert their liveries and skins to PBR and I've always wondered what for. PBR makes sense for proper materials and stuff like that, but what does it do for the use of liveries?
     
  2. SKB

    SKB
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    Let's you have proper metallic cours in skins/liveries, and makes them better looking and coloured in general
    Take a look at the curiosity caravan skin, the orange is metallic (somewhat flakey metallic) and the green is just a regular shiny metallic (no flake)
    Wouldn't be possible with no pibber
     
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  3. Agent_Y

    Agent_Y
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    PBR can actually look like metal while the old materials all look like plastic
     
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  4. C-:

    C-:
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    yeah, not even like plastic, pbr simulates reflections, so everything looks closer to real
     
  5. mrwallace888

    mrwallace888
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    I've also always been confused about PBR in general. Like I've looked up what it is but sometimes I'm still a bit confused about it compared to standard graphics.

    Like... under normal circumstances, you've got your main texture, right? Then you've got a normal map which helps make it look more 3D by defining how light shines on it. Then you've got some kind of roughness/metallic map which I guess determines how shiny a surface is or something to that extent. But I've never fully understood how much of a difference PBR truly makes. I mean, it's Physically-Based Rendering, but how does it define whether something looks like wood or plastic or metal that regular rendering can't already achieve?
     
  6. Turbo49>

    Turbo49>
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    It also add Fresnel maps, which make a surface more or less shiny if you look at it from an angle. It also adds clearcoat. I suggest you go toy around with the roughness/metallic/clearcoat sliders in the color tab of the config menu, to see better what they do.
     
  7. Agent_Y

    Agent_Y
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    It's all not quite correct what you said, there are differences in how these parameters work in old rendering compared to in PBR. (And btw PBR is the "normal circumstances", the old way of doing stuff was kinda cheating, all professional programs use either PBR or even more advanced stuff nowadays.)
    Old main texture had some shading already implemented into it, like shaded surfaces were darker by default, this made it look wrong when the light goes directly on top of the surface. PBR fixes it, main texture has no shading at all, just pure colors.
    Normal maps haven't changed as far as I can tell, but they can now work on skins which they couldn't before, which is a cool (but unused) feature.
    Determining how shiny a surface is used to be done using a specular map. It was basically how much light the surface reflects. But it didn't allow reflections like on mirrors. That was done by basically cheating the rendering engine, materials were separated into 4 layers and the lowest one behaved like a mirror, reflections were done by making the layers on top of them semi-transparent. It was a pain to use the old materials system because of this, and the way the game handled semi-transparent parts of textures was a buggy mess. PBR has roughness maps which (on metal) until a certain point act like the old specular maps, and above it they make the surface more like a mirror. They can also be used to make scratches on skins not reflect light, because they work on skins too. But there's another thing to it...
    Normal materials don't work like mirrors under normal circumstances like you can probably tell. When you perfectly polish something it doesn't mean that it will reflect like a mirror. Because basically there are 2 types of reflections, metallic and not metallic. They look very different and metallic maps determine which part of the texture is metallic and which not. You can also make stuff half-metallic to simulate reflections on dirty metal or flake (in a very basic way), or matte black paint on cars.
    There are also more advanced parameters like clear coat effect that is used to simulate reflections on rust (they are again very different from normal metal, but are still metallic). And PBR also makes the fresnel effect possible (basically reflection visibility depends on the angle at which you are looking at them). It's obviously a giant improvement.
    And also PBR makes it easier to test materials in Blender because Blender is PBR too.
     
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  8. C-:

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    Amazing explanation!
     
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