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    I figured I'd start a construction topic instead of spamming the "3d modeling" and "What did you just do in NoLimits" threads. Recently I've been toying around with Blender a lot, trying to get more into modeling as well as develop a better understanding of the texturing and node system within cycles. I've been doing a lot of reading on how cycles renders things and how different shaders can be mixed to create physically based (lifelike) renderings, otherwise known as PBR. Naturally, one of my first thoughts was to use this technology and NoLimits in combination to make a coaster that both looks and rides very nearly to how it would in the real world. First, however I had to come up with a way to model track. I did this using a combination of the array and curve modifiers on a section of track that I modeled myself (similar to what Kyle Sloane did to model his custom track I assume).

    The result is very promising. The next steps will be to create a PBR metal material, texture the rails, and complete a layout. I am aiming for a mix of old and new B&M sitdown. Here is the layout I have now:

    • CommentAuthorA113
    • CommentTimeNov 18th 2016
    good stuff, man. so awesome you got to figure that out. interested to see where this goes
    Unfortunately I dont think there is really such thing as a middle ground between old and new b&m. They either used stengel or they didnt.. Blender track looks nice tho!
    • CommentTimeNov 18th 2016

    Old school layout cues, non-Stengel shaping?

    ^Layout cues?
    Fair point Kyle. Definitely still working on the layout and shaping as everything is still very much a work in progress. How realistically the track rides will be a very important component of this project and trackwork on rides I've made in the past has often been lacking so I'm going to take my time with this haha.
    • CommentTimeNov 18th 2016

    ^^More defined element separation, heavier use of helixes and turns of varying nature as their own 'element', especially earlier in layouts, pacing "breathers" or "set up" elements other than MCBRs...

    ...disclaimer: those are almost certainly feelings rather than than rules, and even saying those out loud I'm not sure I actually see a lot of cues that stick out as "old school B&M" in the above layout.

    ^If you're concerned about shaping, well, take a look at it. An eyebrow that gets raised when you say "mix of old and new B&M" because it sounds kind of like a cop-out of "I just kinda did my own thing in FVD." Which could still result in a perfectly fun layout, but... it won't necessarily feel like a B&M of any era, blend or otherwise.

    Small update. I reworked the layout completely, trying to make it much more flowy and thought out than the last layout.

    I also remodeled the track completely to be more accurate and more to scale as well as using geforcefan's csv to Blender curve tool to import the spline data, so huge credit to him. The track in these renders has a basic PBR shader applied that is not final in the slightest.

    I still haven't figured out a way to get Blender to not freak out when the curve inverts or goes vertical. You can see the effect on the loop in the background of the second render. If anyone knows a way to fix that, please inform me.
    Still trying to figure out some issues with blender curve orientations. In the meantime, here is what I am thinking is the final layout of Locomotion, a launched B&M sitdown.

    Click for higher res
    • CommentAuthorA113
    • CommentTimeNov 28th 2016
    The layout is a huge improvement, I really like it! The elements are definitely scaled more appropriately, too.
    I actually have a clever idea on now to deal with the banking issues. Import normally, then switch the x and z values for the csv file, and import again. You will have to rotate the second one in blender, and then match up the locations, but one curve will always have the right banking at each point in theory... just separate out the messed up sections of track on the first curve and change the curve that they are attached to to the second curve.
    • CommentAuthorTheBeatles
    • CommentTimeNov 29th 2016
    I'm a big fan of the new layout, aside from the double-corkscrew finale. I'd change one of them into a hill like this:

    • CommentTimeNov 29th 2016
    on the contrary^ the double cork is one of my favorite parts, since it's so un-B&M yet it works so well here
    • CommentTimeNov 29th 2016
    NICE..... This looks very good :)

    Thing I don't understand: what's this doing inside the PLANET COASTER area of the forums?
    ^Fixed, NLE (funnily enough) defaults to Planet Coaster as the topic area.

    ^^ & ^^^That's what I was aiming for. It's something that hasn't been seen, but at the same time I could see it happening in the future. I may reconsider it though.

    ^^^^That could possibly work. I'll take a look into modifying geforcefan's script to do that later. In his video here the track doesn't have issues, but it was with C4D. There must be some issue with the way Blender does roll angles that C4D doesn't have. Also, can you combine curves like that into a single curve?
    I've been using NL as a stress release when I get a break from studying for finals. Definitely not healthy how much I've been doodling layouts in the past few days. Here are a few.

    Hyper invert with inspiration from various different B&Ms. The goal here is to make a ride similar to Alpengeist with the intensity of Raptor.

    This is an Intamin blitz that will eventually have three progressively faster launches. Want to make it pretty long, and have the later parts have some heavy terrain interaction. Definitely a larger scale project if I ever go through with it, but I at least wanted to start putting my ideas down.

    As always, click for higher resolution
    Crimson, an Intamin LSM launch coaster, is available for download on the Steam workshop. I'll try to make a POV video tomorrow, but Nolimits has been giving me trouble recently with recording files. Thanks to Projektion for letting me use his environment.
    Sorry for the triple quadruple post and for being a little spammy, but winter break = free time to play with NL2. I uploaded a POV of Crimson to my channel, link.

    I've also been working on creating my own environment, the diffuse color is a little too blue right now, but I'm happy with the way it's going. Also working on a B&M giga.

    (Click for higher resolution image)
    • CommentTimeDec 19th 2016
    Loved the POV. I cringed seeing it start with a heartline roll after the launch but upon arrival it rode very nicely. My only nitpick would be the somewhat random Immelmann in the middle of the layout (at least I thought it was a tad random). It also it a bit long, but hey, the more twisties the more fun.