Blender

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Blender in action.

(icon) Blender (download) is a free and open source 3D modeling package that can be used to create models for Source.

SMD scripts

Blender Import Export
2.4x Jon Moen Drange's 2.44+ Dvondrake's 248.1+ (Support)
2.5x Blender SMD Tools 2.58+

Installation (2.4x)

Blender 2.5 introduces a UI-driven addons system. But if you're still using 2.4x, things must be done by hand:

Note:Before you can use any Blender 2.4 script your system must have the appropriate Python runtime. Blender will tell you which version it needs when it starts up.

The .py script file(s) should go in:

Vista
%userprofile%\AppData\Roaming\Blender Foundation\Blender\.blender\scripts\
C:\ProgramData\Blender Foundation\Blender\.blender\scripts\
XP
%userprofile%\Application Data\Blender Foundation\Blender\.blender\scripts\
C:\Program Files\Blender Foundation\Blender\.blender\scripts\
Linux
~/.blender/scripts
Mac OS X
Blender.app/Contents/Mac OS X/.blender/scripts

Under Windows, whether you install to %userprofile% or Program Files/ProgramData depends on which you chose to use when installing Blender. The active folder will exist and be filled with existing .py files.

Under Mac OS X, right-click Blender.app and click Show Package Contents to see the rest.

Learning Blender

Blender's interface can be customised to your tastes.

Blender has a very unusual interface that takes some getting used to. Matters aren't helped by its preference of hotkeys over of visible buttons. Nevertheless, learning it is quite achievable:

Blender and Source

  • Dvondrake's SMD export video tutorial covers creating, texturing and exporting a simple static object
  • The Blender Modelling Walkthrough is a complete, step-by-step guide to creating exporting a static model with Dvondrake's plug-in.
  • See Animation in Blender to learn how to rig and animate in a way that survives SMD export.
  • Blender renders both sides of a polygon, but Source only renders the front. You can bring Blender into line by:
    1. Making sure the Buttons window is visible.
    2. Switching to the Editing panel (F9)
    3. Under Mesh, un-clicking the Double Sided button.
    4. If you find you need to flip any polys, either use Ctrl+n to make everything point outward, or select those that need to change and press w,0.
  • Because Dvondrake's exporter only exports the currently-selected object, you can store as many meshes as you like in the same .blend file. Use scenes and/or layers to easily manage the different elements of a model.
  • This is simply a modeling tip: If you intend scaling the model or the armature, do this in Edit Mode. This can help not having problems with dimensions.

External links