Wings3D(Or better?) tutorial

Community Forums/Developer Stations/Wings3D(Or better?) tutorial

AntonyWells(Posted 2004) [#1]
Decided to give it a go, but can't really find any tutorials that go into detail. (they just tell you what to do..not how to do it!)

Saying that, any other modelers better suited to somebody new to 3d?

Pongo(Posted 2004) [#2]
Actually, you can't do much better than wings as a modeller,... it is my program of choice for poly modeling, even though I own many other programs including Softimage and Max.

I tried to make a quick tut for you, but it is really hard to describe without pics, so instead I'll direct you to a helpful thread on CGTalk

Read the whole thread, it will give you some great tips on how wings works. If you have any specific Questions, just ask and I can try to help.

Edit: Some great explanations and tuts here.

AdrianT(Posted 2004) [#3]
wings is great for organic things, but not so good for scenery, interiors etc.

AntonyWells(Posted 2004) [#4]
Thanks pongo, will take a look, hopefully won't be too scary..;)

Evak, well that's mainly what I want to do(interiors etc)..what do you suggest?

AdrianT(Posted 2004) [#5]
Dude, Don't know really as I'm not very familiar with shareware tools. 2 things that I can't do without are snaps and edge extrude. If you can find a decent 3D app for cheap that supports these tools you can go pretty far with level building.

vertex snap lets you drag geometry around in 3d and have it snap to other geometry depening on what your snap settings are.

I most often use vertex and mid point snap, with edge extrude for creating walls quickly. Wing's will be far better than maplet though :) as that creates the worst geometry I have seen outside of a poor quality boolean tools.

Bob3d(Posted 2004) [#6]
yep...agree with many things, but I would like to add some stuff here, gonna try to be brief, this time ;)

Yep, no real grid snap in Wings. But you can use the ctrl (control) key in many operations, ie, free vertex moves, and seems it snaps to certain amount. I have never used it, as in wings the workflows are quite different....

And yep, maybe is not specially ideal for levels. Though, you can do the stuff. Mainly, if you master it, at the end, is so versatil there's allways a path.But often is slower in workflow than a vertex based or spline based modeller, maybe much suited to it.

Specially, if need walls of extruded edges and not solid walls, then workarounds are needed, like using the hole material (deletes all what is applied with it, in OBJ export)

I'd advice the most advanced tuts page I know :

but even in that page, there's a section called "baby tuts".Go there first.

BTW, there's allways a requirement of make ur brains work...when I started at 3d , long ago, I also searched for tuts that solved it. I decided to just use my own brain to deduce things, and usually now I rarely use a tut or doc. Most uis will become similar after using many.

For level designing, and objects point to point modellers there's my other free tool, my other fav one, a japanesse one (actually this is shareware,Evak, Wings totally free, BSD open source, the most free license I know) .Been largely used by japanese cg indies, in Japan, and flight simulator modders...but not much of the general 3d world know it...well. It has grid, grid configuring, snap to grid (yes! ;) ) , edge extrude (pull), it has shortcuts (fixed, not configurable like wings) , vertex point modeller, you can just go filling your model point to point... you can trace a shape over the wall, and then delete the inside faces, extrude to the interior and delete the bottom faces, etc, etc, etc.

I even use it sometimes for retouch vertex based stuff of my organic models made in wings. Like a cloth that needs to be single walled...I can do with hole material, but sometimes you prefer the standard way of doing things.

In both wings and metasequoia you can just load a reference image and trace over the image blueprint your several views. I have done it professionally in a game job, modelled loads of real life objects and quite accurately with wings, but I admit it needs quite a huge knowledge of wings to it in a comfortable way, and still there are limits.

That's why sometimes I just use Hamapatch (splines modeller that can make peaks (ie: vertex modeller) and export OBJ files) , or Metasequoia if I think i'll go quicker so. And often finally integrate in Wings (but open objects or isolate vertices or deleted faces, inverted ones, mess obj import in wings. That's all related to winged edge internal 3d structure in wings. Winged edge. It need all to be a solid. Anyway, all can be worked out.)

Metasequoia...I was doing stuff at th every first quarter of an our...same with Wings, but to be true, I was quite experienced in 3d when I arrived at Wings.

Only thing is license. Some very few ppl(very few users of the tool) say that well, as it is impossible to buy outside of Japan, and that is since long time...and as the shareware mqo files can be opened in Ultimate Unwrap (so much I recommend UU...) seamlessly....They use the shareware (well I have done also) as it's just a bit more advanced, and no legal stuff said about it. It's only said of the LE version which can be only used for non comercial. But I read no word bout the shareware one. The LE provides formats export: x, cob, dxf...enough to do the deal for those not having Ultimate Unwrap.

The shading is way better and more accurate for modelling than in Wings and Milkshape. Very good specially in organic. But WIngs has way better virtual mirror for characters than metasequoia, while Meta's magnet is better...and so on. At the end, I use them both, though my latest projects are totally done in wings and mapped in UU.

Metasequoia is very easy.Remember to set it up as Advanced, as basic mode is very reduced, and you wont have any advantage, just some important commands not shown.

Using only wings if you're an advanced user, is enough.If you're new to all this, I'd advice install both, it's few megs both ,and can be loaded at same time (these are not the resource hungry huge packages in comercial levels) and see what you prefer.

But yep, for levels maybe better Metasequoia. I like it a lot too. If it's been used for accurate airplanes modelling as well as japanese cg and game characters, heh, must be good... ;)

If you have Ultimate Unwrap (strongly adviced) then download shareware 2.33
if not, LE version is the same, only important miss is 4 viewport, but i tend to prefer one view full screen viewport, I work with keys in every package...F1 , F3, F2 , etc, give me main views, v is vertex/face/edge move...b is magnet, etc, a curious thing, you can handle the light interactively during modelling, in organic this is sweet...sumed to the good (directx, opengl in this is not so good) shading, allows much more accurateness, checked in a ut mod, I could see subtle deficiencies in a human face that were not spoted in Milkshape of the other mates.

no more chat, I'll put you the links (and I was gonna be brief...XD )
Sorry, no tuts links, I learned without them and there's nothing translated to english, not even english help file, status bar messages are in japanese characters (but all menu comands, all the handling is in english don't worry..:) )



go to its oficial forums, user manual and interface and usage sections, highly recommended, and mostly the link I did put u at the start of the post:

You'll see how this wings genious has found a workaorund for every crazy modelling task.

Oh, one of the workarounds for level stuff is import ai paths, and extrude, etc.

BTW, I'd advice fo rlevels have a quite and deep glance at metasequoia.

If I were rich or have an stable job (that's my concept of being rich) I'd mount a HUGE site of tutorials for dozens of tools I have got till the latest depth. I know I would benefit loads of people , but...that will have to wait some time more...humpf.... :(


heh, there are tuts! way more than when I started...
Remeber anyway, I could learn it without them, so it's not complex (with Blender I needed soem doc)
Anyway, it's like with any package, the real advantages do not come from a tut, but from extensive use during months, years.

I dunno if they're any good, surely they'll put u totally on track... :)

This next one I found pretty after I have handled it all..grr...a bit late was for me, but is good.

Metasequoia, like wings, are packages speciallized very well in modelling. A lot of depth. The 50% of people that aproach to it never reach to know it. Imo there's needed a bit of time of patience. Not even an small portion of the needed with Blender. ANyway, Blender also animates, render, and now export to x, quite good for the very patient or 3d experienced. I don't recommend it though for other than experienced ppl or the ones wanting to dedicate a very important portion of your time to learn it.

Ther you go, quite a load of info. I seem to not be able to write short of certain stuff... :D :D

EDIT: oops, missing a very good and extensive meta tut's links hub :

Bob3d(Posted 2004) [#7]
btw, even in metasequoia I prefer to draw a shape, and then extrude as a whole, and then delete the top, invert the walls...

Meta 2.33 has some important nice improves over the LE...for what I am seing -out of curiosity- now, long since I used last time.

Bob3d(Posted 2004) [#8]
...also it maybe only my two cents, but having tested a bit Silo, I think Silo es way better for architecture, while I strongly prefer Wings yet for organic...

oh, and in wings you can do th elatest workaorund I a cube edge loop, hit cut 10, or do mor ecuts, or do a grid of it (quicker, but longer to explain, there's a very quick way of having a single faced (suing hole material)with as much cut in its sides as u like) move the vertex to fit the image blueprint ("trace") , and the inside face (I'm speaking of not having interior edges, all as a face) and extrude (beware, for extrude several faces is extrude region, just extrude would creat unconnected faces) then , you can do an inset in the roof, and extrude Y to the inside, or if want single sided walls, and to make a room to put inside your character, instead of insetting, set the roof to Hole material, and go to object mode (b) , and right click, invert. This way you flip all. If u had made a very complex "spline" shape, you will have your room just as you wanted.

As you see, is a matter more of knowing very deeply wings. While in tools like Max, this is done in a more direct and intuitive way.

Gmax supposedly has this too. And now is cleared you can use it provided you don't use ilegal work arounds to export, and that the game pak or maxcript used for it , is legal for comercial uses, and does not "reverse engineer".

Indeed, gmax for level may be is a clever way.

AntonyWells(Posted 2004) [#9]
Heh thanks alot Bob, lot of useful info. AT this stage I'm still not sure what is best, not having ultimate unwrap, and well, not knowing anything really :) But I'll give that japanese one a go, what's the worst that can happen? (10 hours later) 'My's worse than bosnia.' said the cop cleaning up the remains.

Evak, never used vertex snapping, so I might not miss it much :) But i think i get why it could be useful for a 3d talent void like myself.

AntonyWells(Posted 2004) [#10]
hm, well the japanese one for free is over two years older, tried the two out and the newer(But unbuyable one, only on sale in japan as you said)one looks more impressive. the primitive building is a lot nicer.

Silo3d trailer refuses to run. Reinstalled twice, but tells me after the splashscreen there's a error can't run.

Wings3d, was going well, following tutorials, but crashes whenever I go to use bevel(This or last version)..

so i'm out of options already. Someone up there has it in for me..;)

joncom2000(Posted 2004) [#11]
Maybe you should write a modelling app you can use, you could use the vivid engine to power the interface :)

big10p(Posted 2004) [#12]
Dude, not sure why Wings3D is misbehaving for you. I was on the lookout for a 3D modelling package that I could actually use for years. When I came across Wings3D I was well pleased - it's a fantastic prog!

not having ultimate unwrap,

Ah! I'm in the same boat as you, I think - i.e. skint. I thought I couldn't afford Ultimate Unwrap3D but it quickly became obvious that I couldn't afford NOT to have it. Just bought my copy this week and it's utterly essential. Do as I did and bung it on the overdraught! ;)

big10p(Posted 2004) [#13]
What? Get a new bank, Dude! Mine's given me a 700 overdraught limit - without me asking for it - and I don't even have a job. Mind you, I did have 20000+ in the bank at one time so I think they're just being nice. Banks... nice... what am I saying?! :P

AdrianT(Posted 2004) [#14]
heh, wings sounds good if your doing BSP stuff as it sounds liek it almsot forces you to make convex hull geometry. :)

Bob3d(Posted 2004) [#15]
yep, hehe

BTW, with hole material, you can do wonders...and actually, you're not loosing the faces in th emodelling proccess..they'll just fly away in export. I know, it's a dirty workaround, but...

Well, I have seen some scenery well detailed done with it, must be possible, then...I dunno if I'd choose it for that, probably not, but I have already done rooms for comercial games with it...if u're asked for much cad precission...could be done, but is more work than with a more cad oriented application (Max is, compared to wings, of course! ;) )

Ultimate Unwrap, is way cheap, and...not only for blitz3d (supports the format quite well, with animation, brushes(here, partially thanks to evak ;)), etc) but for practically other engine out there....

Though, for md2 and md3, you'll need character fx md2 direct export, and even better some of the old school tools, like nPherno fantastic md3 compiler (maybe also Accutrans for batch welding frame-meshes to be imported into npherno compiler) , npherno NST md2 skinner and uv mapper (quite good for those very, very old times) , quake modeller if ur really patient.

Gmax for md3 maybe the dieal think to use and what few people know, is now it's said is legal to use with latest md3 (not tempest Id Software gamepak!) plugin for Gmax...

And md3 anims are quite nice, compared to md2.

There's a load of tools and possibilities. Practically all require a mountain of time and patience, though.Those older ones, imo, require also quite a lot of experience in 3d, their even harder than Blender in some aspects (there's not even doc available to all extent, I mean)

BTW, if you have deep exploration, I think that one allows open and saving of md2 and md3...I am sure it does allows opening, but i don't remember about the saving...if so, buying Ultimate unwrap and character fx, you would be done.

For very experienced 3d people, or very patient ones, and in the aim of keeping the most possible in the free field, I'd start to recommend has too many problems yet, but well, I could export a nice md2 (and even import) with not much problems , as checked in 3d exploration. And the x exporter is improving every day...

If you're only into statics (sure you wont need ever the character animation??) then whatever the modeller+lithunwrap will do the job.

jhocking(Posted 2004) [#16]
In a big coincidence I just gathered a bunch of screenshots for a tutorial on modeling in Wings and then texturing that model using Lithunwrap. I don't know if I am going to write the tutorial after all, but if I do I'll post it in the Art Tutorials forum.

AntonyWells(Posted 2004) [#17]
Cool, though personally I still can't get wings to do a bevel without crashing, but i'm not the only one in need of this so don't matter.

Bob, I've been following those tutorials for metaSequiencoLabbabaLE, the one where you have to model
a plane, I get to the part where I create the wing in a seperate object, but when I select the verts and turn on pull, it refuses to work. Only when I deselect everything does it work, which means I have to literally pull every face, match up.(Which is practically impossible.)

Any ideas? I even tried the sharewhere modern version, same deal..yet the tutorial clearly shows him selecting all verts, then doing a simlpe pull on all of them to create the top/bottom parts...

Shame as well, I was finding it pretty easy going until this..which has thrown a dear in front of my head lights. Only this dear is armed to the teeth with heat seeking missiles.

jhocking(Posted 2004) [#18]
By the way, the Intrude tool in Wings is awesome for doing interiors. Give it a try; select a face, right click, and choose Intrude on the menu.

Actually, the fastest way to see quickly how Intrude works is with a sphere. First create a sphere. Switch to face mode and click on a bunch of faces to select them; don't select polygons that are adjacent, but rather space them out. Now right click and select Intrude. Move the mouse to change the thickness of the Intrude operation, and click to finish. Hit Space to deselect everything and now tumble the view around to get a good look at what happened. Automagic interior!

Picklesworth(Posted 2004) [#19]
Thanks for telling me that jhocking! I've always wondered what intrude does :)

Bob3d(Posted 2004) [#20]
spaced man, unlike wings, Metaseqoia can work at same time with face, edge, vertex.(you can activate which you want them to be selectable, left vertical menu, deploy the EDIT OPTION rolling menu) Pull is an operation done on edges. If u click on any vertex, it will understand it have to deselect. Hitting space bar you will lock a selection. In EDIT (this is a nother one)rolling menu, you have a possibility of save a selection to restore later...u can have there up to 4 selections. Quite handy, of course, here comes no where close the groups (saved selections) of wings, that allow much more power.

I said it before, I repeat now: I use both. I can do a full project (indee,done many times) with only one of them, is just a matter of using the ideal tool at each stage.

What more...oh, yes. If ur gonna use pull..beware.

A extrude/normal, will act the way u want from buildings from a plant blueprint. You can select interior walls, extrude normal into the inside(to make the walls thickness in case is needed (usually not)), but remember you can invert faces normals in case you need.

In meta, I'd extrude a blueprint trace plane (done with CREATE FACE tool (f)from a top view (F2, bottom shift+F2)) with "normal" button pressed in extrude options.

Then I'd invert normals of whole model (menu "selected")

so walls point to the inside.

usually this is fastest.

Wings has more weapons, but for levels has other problems.

In wings, I'd for example add a cube, delete all faces except top one.(quad select from front view (z))

that face left, I'd select it, hit (L) , , the (0) (that's 10 cuts in each edge)

And now, for example, you could go tracing over your image plane object (loaded previuosly ) if u need it. With move free (in my case, N key, put your own) , in ortographic view activated, and top view (Y), you could go tracing (moving vertices) and advice: ctrl pressed while dragging, constrains the movement in "jumps"~grid snap. WIth shift, it will, I think snap to existing vertices.

Is very, very usful the use of flatten, secondary mode, choose reference vertex, edge, etc. So you align vertices, if needed.

Also, tab, for enetring an exact number.

also shift D (repeat last command, same amount)

also, know that you can mirror stuff and weld. Or use virtual mirror. An that scaling vertices in an axe makes the behave with simetry to the center, very useful.

Puzzled Paul explains this all much better.

There are many many ways.

BTW, sorry. In meta, pull wont work well for you. It does not react to grid snap. Neither extrude normal. But at least withextrude you can quad or lasso select the roof of an extruded house floor, and move with snap to grid, or align vertex to an exact height position. This is often easier done in wings.

The fact is meta--->wings is full of problems, while wings---> meta doesn't.

Was curious , so banged now a quick level with blender...very good tools...can be done...but...compared to meta and wings,I'd prefer the others for ease of use, and wings is quicker in what it can do.

Also made in meta and in wings...Well, maybe wings is the fastest...

I'd have to test a bit gmax for a more complete "review", but i'd expect it to be the ideal.

All needs solid knowledge of the package ;)

Intrude in wings...can add some more extra polies, and has some dangers, but yep, is a good way too.

I tend to prefer an inset, extrude normal to the inside, maybe some flattens to vertex to align.

the rubbish wings "level" I banged in some minutes. Is just to say it's possible