3ds Max - Basic Guide to Exporting .DAE File

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The following guide demonstrates the process for exporting an asset in 3ds Max to the COLLADA (.dae) file format used for opening, viewing and modifying a model in the Blue Mars Sandbox Item Editor.


The following applications must be installed on your system to complete this guide:

  • Blue Mars Online
  • Blue Mars Sandbox Item Editor (Previewer.exe)
  • 3ds Max 7, 8, 9, or 2008 32-bit

The following plugins must be installed on your system to complete this guide (download from Tools) :

  • Cg 1.5 Beta 1 from NVIDIA
  • ColladMax Export Plugin for 3ds max

File Location Setup

  1. Navigate to the directory Blue Mars Online\Game\Objects\My Data
  2. Create a new folder for your asset files to reside.
  3. For the model to show up in the Blue Mars Item Editor you must copy the model's .max and .tif files into the new folder created in My Data.
    • Note: The new folder should not contain any sub-folders.

My Data example.jpg
File:My Data example.jpg

Preparing Model for COLLADA (.dae) Export

  1. Start Autodesk 3ds Max.
  2. Open the .max file containing the model you want to export.
  3. Select the model you want to export, and center the pivot of the model.
  4. Set the model's position to (0,0,0).
  5. Reset the model's XForm, and colapse the model's modifier stack.
  6. Assign a Mulit/Sub-Object material to the model.
  7. Set the number of material IDs to match the number of sub-materials used on the model.
  8. The name of the sub-materials in Max's Material Editor window will be used as the material's name in Blue Mars Item Editor, so it is a good idea to name the materials something one will recognize or that is relevant to the model. However, the name of the Mulit/Sub-Object material will be ignored by the Item Editor. This material's name in the Item Editor will be the same as the COLLADA (.dae) filename.
    File:3dsmax - Material name.jpg
  9. Any texture map files used with a material need to be located in the same directory as the max file in Blue Mars Online\Game\Objects\My Data. See My Data example.jpg at the top of this page.

Exporting Model to COLLADA (.dae)

  1. In Max, select a model.
  2. Select File > Export Selected
  3. Save the .dae file into the folder where the .max and .tif files are located in Blue Mars Online\Game\Objects\My Data.
  4. Check only the following boxes in the ColladaMax Export: Bake Matricies, Relative Paths, Normals, Triangulate, XRefs
  5. Select the OK box in the ColladaMax Export window, and a new .dae file should be generated in the asset's folder in Blue Mars Online\Game\Objects\My Data.

Next Page: Uploading Items From Blue Mars Sandbox Item Editor
Previous Page: Uploading A Blue Mars Asset

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