How to Adjust Shininess in Your Farming Simulator Mod with Specular Maps - dummies

How to Adjust Shininess in Your Farming Simulator Mod with Specular Maps

By Jason van Gumster, Christian Ammann

If shininess is an issue in your Farming Simulator mod, try using a specular map. A specular map is a deceptively simple texture to paint. A specular map is a grayscale image that controls the specularity, or shininess, of your material. Values closer to white have more specularity, whereas values closer to black have less; they’re more matte.

Think about the materials that make up your model. In general, metal and automotive paint have higher specularity, whereas rubber nonslip surfaces and old, worn wood have low specularity. However, nothing is quite that simple. Metals and paints get dull as they age.

In contrast, some rough surfaces can start gaining some shine as they get smoothed out from use. You have to think not only about the types of materials in your object, but also the age you intend for them to appear to have.

After you figure out the details about your object’s material, you can paint the specular map using the same basic process you use for painting diffuse maps, with a few subtle differences. Here’s the breakdown on the steps to set it up:

  1. Select your object.

  2. In Texture Properties, select a texture slot that isn’t already in use and add a new texture.

  3. Name your new texture something sensible (for example,myFantasticMod_specular).

  4. Change the texture type to Image or Movie.

  5. Create a new image in the Image panel.

    Leave the Generated Type as Blank.

  6. In the Mapping panel, change the coordinates drop-down menu from Generated to UV.

  7. In the Influence panel, disable the checkbox next to Diffuse Color and enable the checkbox for Specular Color.

With your texture properly set up, you can paint your specular map using the same process as painting the diffuse map. The only difference in this case: You’re starting with a blank, black image instead of the color grid. And when you paint, you only add levels of gray and white, effectively telling the render engine to make those parts of the mesh shinier.

When you finish, save your specular map to an image file using the GIANTS convention (for instance, myFantasticmod_specular.png).

What you just produced is the simplest form of a specular map. It works fine in the basic case, but you can create a supercharged specular map specifically for GIANTS Engine. Not only does it include specularity, but it also provides texture information for ambient occlusion and dirt.