Requirements for making your own 3D Characters

FrameForge can import rigged models via both Collada and FBX formats, though the former is generally preferred at this point.

For a rigged model to be compatible with Frameforge, it must have:

  1. A low to mid level polygon count, shoot for no more than 10-15K
    1. Smart use of triangle budget to ensure optimal performance with model details shown via textures rather than complex meshes whenever possible
  2. The mesh is all triangulated and each mesh only has a single texture on it.  Split up the meshes if you need to use more than one texture.
    1. NOTE: Our import engine will try to correct errors with these two issues, but you'll get MUCH better results if the original modeller does it intelligently rather than relying on an import engine.
  3. The model must be back-face culling compatible
  4. Avoid lots of small textures and small individual meshes, join them into one reasonably sized larger one and let the UVs do the work.  Look at this Elk, for example which has the entire animal in one texture and it is similarly a single mesh.
  5. Do not go crazy with large textures as typically you can't see any difference unless you are in an extreme close-up.  In most cases 512x512 is sufficient, though you can go up to 1024x1024 if really needed.   Usually a single object has a single material and single texture which ensures that the object can be drawn with one drawcall for optimal performance. FrameForge does not currently support albedo or normal maps though we're looking into adding it in the future.
  6. The rigging MUST have a single root bone and should generally be done in a T-Pose.
  7. Autoriggers like Mixamo (still free, though who knows for how long!) generally work well, and in the case of Mixamo, we can import their COLLADA (*.DAE) exports really well and translate their skeleton to match ours, making it possible to use all the pre-defined poses with the new model.

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