XSI tips and tricks?

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XSI tips and tricks?

Postby Kubata on Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:43 pm

Hey guys, been fooling around with XSI since it's the only program that's managed to actually get my models properly into game. I know there's the VDC pages for some help with XSI but I was wondering if there was another resource anybody here recommends for some more commonly used tips and tricks?

Also I'm having this issue where my model consists of a bunch of different objects that scale very strangely once exported. This is a concern if, for example, I have a highly complex model that needs to maintain certain proportions. For example, Im making some detail props like rocks and such, and I created several in one XSI scene to be used as a group of rocks in one mdl file. Some of these rocks are big and some are small, but when exported they all seem to be the same size and very skewed. Not sure what's going on with that or if there's something Im supposed to do to prevent this from happening?
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Re: XSI tips and tricks?

Postby stoopdapoop on Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:56 pm

freeze all transforms before you export.
also, sometimes it helps to freeze your modeling stack(forgot the real name for it, just expand the tree for each mesh in scene explorer, then right click "modeling" and click freeze).

I'm in class right now, I'll give some tips and tricks later.
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Re: XSI tips and tricks?

Postby Kubata on Wed Oct 12, 2011 10:00 pm

Thanks for the quick reply bro I really appreciate it. Looking forward to more tips :)
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Re: XSI tips and tricks?

Postby KRAN4e on Fri Oct 21, 2011 12:14 pm

Yeah,more xsi tips please! :)
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Re: XSI tips and tricks?

Postby Mr. Happy on Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:04 pm

The 'Freeze' button at the bottom right freezes the modeling stack. That speeds the program up by the way.
Something that helped me early on was figuring out those top right button on a popup window, the one that looks like a keyhole will prevent that page from getting changed, and new windows will pop in a new window instead of changing it.
Another big stumbling for me:
If your material isn't displaying right check for excess u/v projections and clusters under the polygon mesh. Sometimes shit really hits the fan and you just can't get the clip in to show in the right place, switch explorer to materials and images (M and O hotkeys)and delete extra copies of stuff.

xsi scripts: http://rray.de/xsi/
big xsi site: http://www.xsibase.com/
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Re: XSI tips and tricks?

Postby Gambini on Fri Oct 21, 2011 11:36 pm

Yeah ^ that gave me quite a few headaches. I had about 50 "materials" of the same tga into one of my models.

XSI is a great tool, I would recommend to use the mod tool editing mode which is a lot faster and more friendly than any other.
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Re: XSI tips and tricks?

Postby Epifire on Sat Oct 22, 2011 4:11 am

XSI is a big, and more less precise modeling program. Yeah XSI was actually my first kinda modding program to ever get my hands on.

Some tips from me would be grid snap, and poly to poly duplication. I know in ModTools v6.0 (my favorite), you can use Ctrl+D to duplicate selected objects as well as poly surfaces. The different expansions to this cube were done by the Ctrl+D hotkey...

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I know some versions like v6.0 include the ease of access button for snap, but the general hotkey is almost always holding Ctrl while moving objects, points, or polys. Snap is seen in use when the points/vertexes are black, as shown below...

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I used to model a lot, back for StarWars Battlefront, but exporting to Source is much harder these days then in the old games. Hope that helps a bit for useful info. :smt023
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Re: XSI tips and tricks?

Postby Gambini on Sat Oct 22, 2011 5:58 am

One thing i´d want to add: you better start looking for something else for adding smoothing groups, because XSI just doesn´t have them. I for example always model in XSI then export to obj where i pick 3dMax and add the smoothing groups, and then export to smd. XSI is usefull though, for exporting collision meshes directly, since it uses geometry approximation (a sort of autosmooth) which saves you the work of assigning one smoothing group for each collision piece.
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Re: XSI tips and tricks?

Postby Kubata on Mon Oct 31, 2011 6:09 am

Thanks guys this was all really useful. XSI does have smoothing groups but it applies it based on angle and it applies it to every object in the scene. You can't select specific objects or polys to play with.
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Re: XSI tips and tricks?

Postby stoopdapoop on Mon Oct 31, 2011 5:40 pm

well, you're supposed to wrap any polygons that you want to be assigned together in hard edges. You can turn this off, but I think you'd be a fool to.

The only difference between these two models is that one has a hard edge running along its length.

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Gambini wrote:One thing i´d want to add: you better start looking for something else for adding smoothing groups, because XSI just doesn´t have them. I for example always model in XSI then export to obj where i pick 3dMax and add the smoothing groups, and then export to smd. XSI is usefull though, for exporting collision meshes directly, since it uses geometry approximation (a sort of autosmooth) which saves you the work of assigning one smoothing group for each collision piece.


If you're exporting to max to do smoothing, there's something very wrong :P XSI's smoothing system is much more intuitive and just as flexible (flexible meaning that you can do it all by hand if you really want to, but that doesn't make much sense) Are you sure that your smoothing groups aren't showing up?

Kubata wrote:Thanks guys this was all really useful. XSI does have smoothing groups but it applies it based on angle and it applies it to every object in the scene. You can't select specific objects or polys to play with.


And you can select individual polies and objects. Whenever you click on an object's geo-approximation it'll ask you if you want to create a local copy, or use the scene's, you should make a local copy if you want to use values that are different from the scene's. Also, these settings can be passed around, you can have settings that are shared between multiple objects, and other settings that are shared between multiple other objects, so that if you want to make a change to one group, you only have to make the changes in one place, and they'll propagate.
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Re: XSI tips and tricks?

Postby Gambini on Mon Oct 31, 2011 11:19 pm

Well, actually since that day I posted that until today, things have changed. I realized that XSI´s smd exporter actually works and that it is much easier to export the collision meshes directly from there (thanks to the geometry approximation thingy). Given that, I played around and found that, asyou guys say, it is much more intuitive and straightforward to use geometry approximation re arranging the polys in different meshes depending on whether you need hard edges or all round smooth lowpoly pipes.
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