How to Set Up a New Scene in Your Farming Simulator Mod

By Jason van Gumster, Christian Ammann

If you make a lot of Farming Simulator mods, you can find yourself spending a lot of time just setting up a scene and configuring some basic settings each time. Rather than go through these steps over and over again, you can create a template project, which is a baseline file that has all of those basic things already set up for you.

That way, you just need to launch your 3D DCC tool and jump right in.

In Blender, you should make a few changes to the default scene right off the bat:

  • Delete everything. Blender’s default scene is a lamp, a camera, and a cube object. Select them all (A) and delete them. The default point lamp isn’t a good representation of the world light in Farming Simulator and you only need cameras for vehicle mods. Although the cube is a great starting point for modeling, deleting it now and adding it back later if you need it is faster.

  • Use real-world units. In Scene Properties, expand the Units panel and change the Units setting from None to either Metric or Imperial. Doing so isn’t absolutely required because the I3D exporter treats one Blender unit as one meter, but it’s helpful for keeping units in mind while working. This is especially true if you happen to live in a part of the world that hasn’t fully converted to metric.

  • Set Blender Internal as your default renderer. This setting is already the default in Blender, but many Blender users often change this default to Blender’s other renderer, Cycles. Cycles is a great renderer, but with it selected, getting a good idea of what your mod will look like in-game is much more difficult.

  • Enable GLSL shading and Backface Culling. In the Properties region of the 3D View (the N panel), go to the Shading panel and change the Material Mode drop-down menu from Multitexture to GLSL.

    If you don’t have Blender Internal set as your renderer, you won’t see this option.

    With these set, you can get a good idea of the in-game appearance of your model when you have the 3D View set for textured shading (Alt+Z).

  • Add a Sun lamp on layer 20. More than likely you won’t want to export this lamp with your model for the game. However, you need some kind of light in your scene so you can see what your mod looks like with textured shading (otherwise, it’s just a big black blob) and the Sun lamp is a decent approximation of Farming Simulator’s world light.

    By putting the lamp on layer 20, you can quickly toggle it on and off by enabling and disabling that layer.

After you make these changes, save your file (File→Save As or Shift+Ctrl+S) to a place you can remember with a name that makes sense, like mod_template.blend.

Depending on your computer hardware, you may also want to set a user setting for performance reasons. If you have a relatively modern video card, you should set Blender to use vertex buffer objects (VBOs), a more efficient way of managing data in the 3D View, especially in large scenes or in models with a lot of vertices.

To enable VBOs, open User Preferences (Ctrl+Alt+U) and go to the System section. You can find a small checkbox labeled VBOs in the middle of the center column.

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Click the VBOs checkbox to enable them and then click the Save User Settings button at the bottom left of the window so VBOs are enabled every time you open Blender.

One of the key differences between Blender and GIANTS Editor is the world orientation. GIANTS Editor (along with a number of other common 3D DCC programs) has a y-up world, meaning the y-axis is the vertical axis while the x- and z-axes form the ground plane. Blender’s world, on the other hand, is z-up.

So in Blender, the ground is defined by the x– and y-axes while the z-axis is the vertical one. It’s not as disorienting as it sounds, but sometimes it takes people a while to get used to it.