Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
For basic low polygon mesh creation, all versions of Lightwave are just as
useful. Lightwave's user interface is shown in Figure 5.4.
This is typical of a modeller, splitting the screen into four user views.
Three of the views are orthographic, showing no perspective foreshorten-
ing. The interface is very configurable but by default the top left view
shows a view looking down the y -axis from above. Left and right in this
view is the x -axis, and up and down represents the z -axis. Bottom left is
the front view looking straight down the z -axis. In this view left and right
are again the x -axis, but up and down is the y -axis. Bottom right shows the
side view with left and right representing the z -axis and up and down
again representing the y -axis. The final view in the top left is a perspective
view shown using OpenGL rendering. Clicking on the rotate icon for this
view can rotate this view and the position can be moved using the
transform icon. At any time, pressing the 'g' key in an orthographic view
centres the view over the position of the mouse. The less than and greater
than keys ('<' and '>') zoom in and out. Pressing the 'a' key scales the
views so that the model is fully visible in all the views. When making a
model you will use both point selection and polygon selection modes,
which are activated by pressing the appropriate button at the bottom left
of the screen. In point selection mode, clicking on any point in the views
will select that point; if you keep the left button down then you can select
several points. Having released the left mouse button, clicking on any
selected point deselects it. To add to the selection press the shift key while
clicking on a point. To clear a selection click in the grey area to the bottom
left of the screen. Polygon selection is done in much the same way, but
instead of clicking on a point you click on an edge and any polygons that
share this edge are selected. By releasing the left mouse key and then
clicking on selected polygons in one of the three views, you can easily
select just the polygons that you want to work on. If you have a selection
then you can zoom in to this by pressing the 'a' key while pressing
shift.
We will start by loading a backdrop image. If you are working along with
this tutorial then you will find a side and back view for 'Charlie' in the
'Chapter05\Charlie\Images' folder on the CD. The images are called
'FrontSketch.tga' and 'SideSketch.tga'. To load a backdrop image, press
'd' to open the display options dialog box. Select the 'Backdrop' tab. The
front view is number 4, so select 4 and from the image dropdown choose
'Load image'. Navigate to the appropriate file and click open. Repeat for
view 4, only this time choose the side view. If you selected correctly then
you should have a view like that in Figure 5.5. To view close in on the face
use a combinaton of the 'g' key to centre the view over the mouse cursor
and the '>' key to zoom in.
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