Useful Tools in MAX for Making VRML
MAX will export many of its animation and modeling
capabilities to VRML so it is full of useful tools.
Some are particularly useful:
- The Polygon Counter:
- Under the "Utilities" command panel, select "Polygon
Counter". It will tell you the total polygons in the
scene and in you selection. You can set a limit of
polygons for your scene which it will keep track of.
- Optimize Modifier:
- Good for reducing the poly count.
- Normal Modifier:
- Reversing the normals of objects can create interesting
effects in VRML. Try reversing the normals of a sphere
and spinning it around in your browser.
- EditMesh Modifier:
- Used constantly for detailed polygon work. Detaching
faces as seperate objects and optimizing them seperately
can give you a lot of control of complexity.
- Booleans can create massive numbers of polygons in files
and should be used very carefully. If you're finding a
huge polycount and you've used a Boolean, it's probably
- The Track View:
- Essential for keeping track of objects, grouping and
animation just as in MAX.
- Hiding Objects:
- The VRML exporter gives you the choice to export hidden
objects. This is useful if you want to isolate geometry
or animations in a larger file and test them out
- Generally, VRML has a non-linear narrative. Whereas in
MAX you're usually making a scene where one thing happens
after the other for output to film or video, a VRML file
might have multiple animations happening at once that you
link sensors to. They will play in whatever order the user
triggers them in in the VRML file. This can get confusing
in a MAX scene. The trackview is particularly useful here
to see what's going on.
- Wire materials:
- Applying a "wire" material to an object will make the
geometry export as a wireframe. Wireframes render much
faster than faces in VRML - less pixels per frame. This
can mean much smaller file size for models and animations.