Combining materials into one, how?

Let’s say i make a tree model, it has a trunk with branches and 200 separate leaves planes. Each plane will get its own material (which isnt useful at all since its using the same UV-map and texture).

How can i combine these so that they share just one material? It’s not really an issue within Blender (i can simply use “join” and i wont notice it’s 200 separate instances), but outside of blender (e.g exporting to some game engine format) i will have 200 separate 2D planes and 200 materials. This is far from optimal and it’s a also a performance hog, some game engines even only supports 3 separate meshes (for a single object).

I’m using blender 2.49b, but i guess i can download one of the newer versions if someone doesnt know how to do it in this old version.

Many thanks.

Why do you have a different material for each leaf? They can all use the same texture in Blender 2.69, and presumably in 2.49. Maybe I don’t understand the question…

hmm i think each time i make a copy of the leaves plane it will get a new material (per default), like leaf01, leaf02 etc… but i’m not sure that’s the whole problem… I wish there was some way to permanentely join meshes…“join” is not permanent and it’s just really joining inside of Blender, if i export to other formats they will again be seen as completetly separate meshes.

Is there something besides join? I should not be able to use “P” (separate) and then “separate by material”, because if i can then it means it’s not permanetely joined and other formats will see the meshes as completely separate.

press shift +a and then space bar then ‘mix node’

No, making copies of the leaf should only make a new object name, not a new material as well - they should still share the same material, unless you changed that in your user prefs.

@1832vin: i tried shift + a in edit and object mode, in blender 2.49b and 2.69… shift + a seems to be “add”. pressing space when you are in “add” does nothing.

@craig: you’re probably right… though using “join” on all meshes and then “p” to separate them you can still use “separate by material” so it’s like they have different materials because blender knows how to separate them…