Preparing to Model: Configuring 3ds Max and Referencing SkEtcH

Before modeling this book's character, I want to walk you through changing some of the default settings in Max and then present some orthogonal sketches of the character that I will show you how to create throughout the book. I'm going to assume that you've just installed 3ds Max 8 (either the full version or the demo on the CD-ROM) but that you are somewhat familiar with the Max environment. Please note that this is not a beginner tutorial on the usage of 3ds Max 8; I will, however, be straightforward in telling you what to do in every tutorial. Also note that if you need additional information or assistance on any subject, you can click on Max's User Reference in the Help section.

Adjusting the hardware and software settings in Windows and Max is important because much of the graphics work depends on having these proper configurations. I strongly urge you to read this chapter for details on creating the proper modeling environment before you begin your work. Having quality sketch art to follow when modeling is also important because it allows you to properly and accurately model your character. In this chapter, I will review

■ Installing the latest version of DirectX 9 to take advantage of Direct3D shaders in Max and video games

■ Having the proper video card that can handle DirectX functions

■ Setting your Windows graphics environment to display your graphics at the highest resolution

■ Configuring the Max environment in preparation for modeling your game character

■ Applying orthogonal sketch art to 2D planes in Max so that you can use them as a reference when modeling

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