Pilot and R2D2 added to Yet another X-wing fighter

ok, here it is - finally I am making some progress to share for also getting some feedback. I modelled yet another X-wing fighter, but for me this project was important as I stalled a couple of times in the past. But since MasterXeon published his HardOps Add-On I finally gathered I could tackle all the required detail modelling.

The model was made entirely in Blender. I used some help from great people sharing some kit-bashing items on Gumroad (so the cables are from AR’s set as are some of the smaller items). I took some artistic freedom on the blueprint and mark this X-wing as a modified version with some additional gadgets and amends. So you will find stuff on the outside to give it the feel of being “modified” on the go by rebels who lack time for special design. I also wondered why on earth in the original it had its landing gear aft in the wings directly in the engine part… so I moved that to the main body and the whole engine set-up on each wing is entirely symmetrical. Rest is all near the original. The cockpit is modelled, but here I still have to work on the materials, it has standard Cycles shader and they look too smooth for my taste, but this is WIP.

The model was textured in Substance Painter 2, because I struggle with the Blender texturing, so I am using the SP input maps with a PBR shader set-up in the metall roughness workflow with height maps.


  • R2D2 or equivalent is still missing
  • Landing gear is not yet textured - and not yet fully rigged (cockpit is as are the wings)
  • cockpit materials need a view
  • pilot is missing - an obvious flaw ;-))
  • the jet exhaust flames are just displaced cylinders with colour ramp shading - so do not be too hard on me :slight_smile:



iRay render in Substance painter, model from Blender. (benchmark render only!)

I created an R2D2 model (missing some details and with only very simple head rigging) in Blender to complete one missing element of my X-Wing project. The image was textured in Substance painter and a benchmark was rendered in iRay – so that I could bring the textures into Cycles shaders later on with the proper PBR set-up and tweak it towards this benchmarked result. This is part of me testing how to best include Substance Painter into my Blender workflow and so far results have been very encouraging, although some obstacles around proper UV layouts, etc. still put me on a learning curve.

Cycles render in Blender with PBR shaders (no compositing applied!)

I then tested in Cycles, – I seem to have made a mistake with my texture atlas sizes and the atlas pixel density for the body is inappropriately small making the height map paintings jump around. My take is that you have to be very careful with your UV layout if you combine into an atlas. Also, Baketool in Blender seems to have put some UV errors in and my initial unwrap was not fantastic either - which left some artifacts across the model.

But for the Xwing projects it will still work. I only put a head rig into the model, purpose is only to be lifted into the X-Wing and some head turns in flight.

I might try fix it with an 8k export from Substance Painter, 2.1 supports 8k, but there currently is a bug for people with not enough or too much VRAM exporting in 8k. I am the latter case, LOL, never thought that too much resource could put you on the backfoot, but they promise a bug fix soon.

The Pilot is up next - I created a model in Adobe Fuse, I am currently rigging (or shall I say fighting with weight paint and rigify add-on) so that I can place the guy into the fighter.

Any feedback welcome! :o


And now I put the little friend in - he is piloting the fighter, you see the absence of a pilot :wink:


I have now added a pilot. The model for the pilot was easily configured in Adobe Fuse CC and then exported as an obj with texture exports from Adobe. I took it into Blender and created shaders with the textures, although the PBR output of Fuse does not really work and the output from the SpecGloss workflow is not fantastic. But at least a good starting point.

I then rigged the model with Riggify - that needed some difficult clean up work on the Fuse model as well as a lot of weight painting I am sucking at, I have to admit. But at least I got the whole thing working.

I put the pilot in, finding that parts of my model and cockpit sizing are totally off, what a nightmare. So I had to make some adjustments to the chair, the steering stick etc. and get the pilot in line with cockpit while still have him seize appropriately for the r2d2 model in comparison.

But looking at some movie benchmarks I am not totally off. Key learning: model any human interaction stuff in actual size references :evilgrin:

I hope you like the results. What is now missing are some screens in the cockpit (still dark or with placeholders). And yes of course no one flies with open cockpit hatch - but those renders are only WIP for tests.