Lightmap progs?

Community Forums/Developer Stations/Lightmap progs?

Dragon57(Posted 2003) [#1]
Now that Gile[s] is out, which prog does everyone recommend for creating lightmaps to be used in Blitz?

How does the output of Gile[s] compare to the other lightmap cabable programs of the past, including the free ones?

Also, I just upgraded to Lightwave 7.5 and wondered if it could be used to create lightmaps for Blitz? I haven't had a chance to come up to speed on all the new things 7.5 can do (I have been using Lightwave 5.0 for years), but I see it can bake a map.

Any info appreciated.

MadJack(Posted 2003) [#2]
If you have lightwave, check out the texture baking facility first before spending any (more) money. has several good texture baking tutorials.

Having said that, I'm using LW6.5 and am having trouble with light 'leakage' at geometry joins. I haven't had time to fully look into minimising that prob, but I know that it has been an issue discussed on these forums.

Can anyone tell me how Giles goes in terms of the above prob?

wmaass(Posted 2003) [#3]
As a side question I'd like to know what is a better method -- lightmapping or texture baking?

MadJack(Posted 2003) [#4]

Can be the same thing - you can get lightwave to create a uv texture that combines/'bakes' lighting and whatever multi-layer texturing the object had, into one final texture.

For levels that's no good as you typically will want to tile textures and use a separate texture layer for a single lightmap.

Psionic(Posted 2003) [#5]
Lets just say Gile[s] is what we've all been waiting for...

Caff(Posted 2003) [#6]
A lot of people are excited about what Gile[s] can do. For three good reasons:

1. It's very simple, and will save you hours, or days, of time in lightmapping your levels
2. It's geometry unwrap is fantastic. Having done a few tests it hammers most high-end systems into submission.
3. It's fully Blitz-compatible, so all the effects can be easily transported from other apps through Gile[s] into Blitz3d.

Nuff said!

Rob(Posted 2003) [#7]
gile[s] and fontext are the only products outside blitz research I can endorse.

Mustang(Posted 2003) [#8]
I have used LW professionally and absolutely LOVE it; it can produce lightmaps with better quality compared what gile[s] can - but. Quality isn't everything, as gile[s] makes everything SO easy and it is targeted at making games, and making them with Blitz3D... so even if I don't have ANY problems doing everything using LW I'm still going to buy gile[s]! :)

Oh, and one thing that screws up all lightmaps in LW 7.5 is that texture baker does NOT respect any smoothing angles; end result is often far from what you wanted... we have at work MicroWave plug-in that gets around this and is also better/faster baker anyway, but it costs $400! :)

So gile[s] is good.

Akat(Posted 2003) [#9]
B3D Pipeline the best for me...

Rob(Posted 2003) [#10]
Giles has nothing to do with pipeline. Pipeline exports but giles lightmaps with global illumination.

Ruz(Posted 2003) [#11]
yup, but you can make lightmaps in max with global illumination also, then export easily with pipeline
hmm, i can't use giles, my vid card is too old on this pc.
I get a blue screen of death when i boot it up

Akat(Posted 2003) [#12]
same on me... max 6 the best for generating GI with mental ray and then pipeline come in handy

JaviCervera(Posted 2003) [#13]
For Sneak Behind, we are using Quark to make the levels and BSP Factory to lightmap & export to B3D.

For Century, we are using 3DS Max to maek the levels & lightmaps, and the the B3D Pipeline to export to B3D.

TartanTangerine (was Indiepath)(Posted 2003) [#14]

Skitchy(Posted 2003) [#15]
Don't forget 'lil old LightBulb :)

Tom(Posted 2003) [#16]
Hi all,

Yup ,I use Lighwtave too but it's a pain to setup for baking. I have Quill3D also, which is a nice versatile program, with a decent map builder.

But I just got Giles today, and I have to say this is looking like it could be 'the' lightmapping program to use. Great UI, very well thought out, nice results, and pretty fast, in fact I think the GI renders quicker than Lightwave (especialy when baking to a map!!!).

Give the demo a try.

Mustang(Posted 2003) [#17]
Yup, what Tom said... and LW can't pack polygons very efficiently (comapared to gile[s]) for lightmap baking... it's a lot of manual work to get the Atlas work even half well, and there is a bug also in the baking routines that makes the baking look wrong (we have 400$ plug-in at work that fixes it :))... so although I love LW and model/map/texture everything with it I have been looking other alternatives for the lightmapping tool. That was before gile[s] and it's GI came along. Now I only need the wizard fix for the gile[s] and my search is over :)

Odds On(Posted 2004) [#18]
You should also give a look at Luminescence 3D. It has a ton of features, and it is extremely fast.