Environment Modeling

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About modeling levels and environments in games.

Environment Modeling Tutorials

Normal Map Modeling

Normal maps for mechanical/constructed items are often done with subdivision surface modeling. See SubdivisionSurfaceModeling#Hard_Surfaces. To add some organic wear and tear, artists bring their finished sub-d models into Zbrush or Mudbox or 3DCoat for a quick sculpt pass. Some artists do all their mechanical work in a sculpting app, but it seems to be a bit harder to get clean results. See CharacterSculpting#Hard-Surface_Sculpting.

Normal maps for organic/natural assets are usually made entirely in your 3D sculpting tool, but some people use procedural tools. See EnvironmentSculpting.

Sometimes you can shortcut the sculpting/baking process by using a 2D normal mapping tool like nDo or Crazy Bump. This can save a lot of time, but can cause seams if you're not careful.

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