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Decimate objects in Maya/Blender for LODs

Table of Contents

When you have already created a 3D model and want to generate optimized LOD models from it, you can do so by following these steps. This section outlines the process for creating LOD models from an existing high-poly model using popular 3D modeling tools such as Blender or Autodesk Maya.

Step 1: Import the High-Poly Model

First, import the original high-poly 3D model into your preferred 3D modeling software. This model will serve as the basis for generating the LOD models.

Step 2: Duplicate the Model

Create duplicates of the original model for each LOD level you want to generate. For instance, if you aim to create three LOD levels, you will need three duplicates in total.

Step 3: Decimate the Models

For each duplicate model, reduce its polygon count to create different LOD levels. You can achieve this by using the decimation tools or modifiers provided by your 3D modeling software.

  • In Blender: Use the Decimate Modifier, which allows you to reduce the polygon count without significantly affecting the overall shape of the model. You can adjust the ratio parameter to control the amount of decimation.
  • In Autodesk Maya: Use the Reduce Tool, which provides various options to decrease the polygon count of the model while maintaining its overall shape. You can experiment with the percentage reduction setting to achieve the desired result.

Step 4: Compare and Adjust LOD Levels

For each LOD level, compare the simplified model with the original high-poly model. Ensure that the overall shape and appearance of the LOD models are visually acceptable and make any necessary adjustments.

Step 5: UV Mapping and Texturing

If your 3D model has textures, ensure that the UV mapping is consistent across all LOD levels. In some cases, the decimation process may affect the UV mapping, requiring adjustments to ensure the textures appear correctly.

Step 6: Export LOD Models

Once you are satisfied with the appearance of your LOD models, export them in a format compatible with Unity3D, such as FBX or OBJ.

Step 7: Implement LOD in Unity3D

Follow the implementation steps outlined earlier in the article to create a LOD Group in Unity3D and assign your new LOD models to the appropriate levels.

By following these steps, you can create optimized LOD models from an existing high-poly 3D model, significantly improving the performance and visual quality of your Unity3D project. Keep in mind that achieving the right balance between visual quality and performance is essential, requiring careful consideration and adjustments to your LOD models.

LOD Videos #

  1. Unity3D – Level of Detail (LOD) Basics Tutorial by SpeedTutor
  2. Level of Detail in Unity – LOD Tutorial by Unity3DCollege
  3. Unity 2017 Tutorial – Create a LOD System in 5 Minutes by N3K EN
  4. Level of Detail Optimization in Unity by Unity Learn
  5. Blender to Unity: Low Poly Game Asset Creation and LOD by Grant Abbitt
  6. Optimizing Unity3D Games: Level of Detail (LOD) – Unity3D Tips & Tricks by Dapper Dino

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