Let's talk about Chamfering and awful UVs

Hi guys!
There is that popular technique nowadays when you chamfer game asset along with weighted normals applied. (I think games like Alien Isolation, Star Citizen and Cyberpunk are using it)
I love the concept behind it and results look amazing but there is one thing missing that nobody is talking about. I’ve seen few mentions here and there but so far I didn’t find good solution to that problem.
Let me try to explain :slight_smile:

You abut to unwrap your mid/low poly asset. Your modifiers stack still contains Bevel Modifier, Weighted Normals and preferably Triangulation Modifier with keep normals option turned on.
You mark your seams along sharp edges, it’s pretty straight forward, standard procedure that we all love to do :wink: Then you unwrap your model, pack your islands and you’re ready to export. Unfortunately on export or after applying Bevel Modifier (with 1 segment chamfer) your geo will change. Some stretching and overlapping is introduced to your UV islands and that’ll cause shading and texturing issues, at least around your seams. Even if it’s not that noticeable you’ll be left with messy UVs, which I think looks unprofessional on your portfolio.
You might of course try to mark seams and unwrap your model after applying chamfer but that will increase complexity of the task and is very time consuming.
So what’s the right approach, how pros are dealing with it? I guess when it comes to pipelines in big studios they’ll assign someone to do unwrapping manually after applying bevel but I doubt that since time is money. I don’t know, maybe they use cheap outsourcing labour/custom tools and algorithms to do it? How abut, let’s say your personal/portfolio piece? Will you spend extra time to unwrap after bevelling or use different technique, like baking bevels on sharp edge whether from high poly or trim sheet? I love the look of midpoly weighted chamfers but unwrapping it afterwards is an nightmare.
Any help with that will be much appreciated :blush:

try 2 segments profiel shape 0.3, now on the edges of you polygons are one half of the chamfered edges . if put in homegenous (same lenght in UV) and and painting in 3d… no problem

Edit (spelling) and: now on the edges of the polygond have to be some space left over for the chamfered edges, you can bake some “edge detecting” to se where the edges are our do it in a way that you “know”

Thanks @Okidoki so correct me if I’m wrong but 2 segments bevel make sense, I’ll have edge split in the middle that I can use for marking seams. That means I’ll increase my polycount even more yet it still might be worth it. I hope I got it right but it still doesn’t explain how to deal with 1 segment chamfer, what’s the industry standard? If you have to use 1 segment, how you will approach unwrapping? Before or After bevelling? I did some unwrapping courses, for example the one form Josh Gambrell (blenderbros) and they did use 1 segment but left UVs distorted cause unwrapping was done before bevelling. Pipeline within game studios with distributed workload was their answer to that problem.

Sorry, my answer was a bit short. I meant: if for example you have the standard cube, unwrap it, get you favorite color grid then you can paint all different face… if you use 2 segements in modifier you just have to inset you uv’s so to speek and the outer pixels of the squares are the halfed bevel faces.
– And now a journey into the outside world, far far away from Blender…
The workflow to export: this depends on the game engine if you can have something like a bevel/chamfer modifier or can use a shader for this you are in haven :wink: if not, then it depends… you can use this technique and make a clean game engine dependend UV map and bake them from original (clean ones) or of course use it in the first place. You can even make modular textures for example which are not only seamless every 1024, but also ever 64 pixels (maybe using texture mixes with vertex paint to hide this repeation or applieng a dirt mask). Sometimes the geo isn’t even beveled but (only) the normal map is… and of course the models a also modeled using the form language which is dictated by the posibilities to bevel (totally different if everthing is more round…)

Wow, you’ve bean a great help, I really appreciate it. Also, if you happen to have any good reads, breakdowns or references, anything that might help with that matter please don’t hesitate to share your favourite links here. Thanks again @Okidoki, have great day :slightly_smiling_face: