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Shaping primitives in 3ds Max

By Andrew Suryadi
Web: Open Site
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Date Added: 6th March 2015
Software used:
3ds Max

Andrew Suryadi runs through the 3ds Max workflow for shaping primitives using a destructive polygon method in an old city scene


In this short tutorial, I'm going to share the way I modeled destruction as shown in my Jakarta Old
City scene.

I started with a box object in 3ds Max, and applied a rust wall texture to it.

The basic block

Then I converted the box to Editable Poly, chose one of the edges and applied Extrude Edges. I kept the Extrude Radius decent and not too far from the center edge.

Extruding the edges

I then applied the UVW map modifier with Box Mapping, selected all the polygon surfaces and cleared all the smoothing groups in this box.

Clearing the smoothing groups

Under the Vertex Sub Object, I used the Cut tool to start making the destroyed part of the wall's edge.

Creating the breaks in the block

I kept the vertex on both the left and right side, the same number so I can attach it later.

A symmetrical break

I then removed the center edge…

Removing the center edge

…And connected the left and right vertex with the Cut tool so it looked like this.

Repairing the gap

I then selected the polygons in the destroyed part and gave it a different Smoothing group to the rest of the polygons on this box. Any number will do, but mine was a Smoothing group of 4 for the destroyed polygon and 3 for the rest of the box.

Allocating a different Smoothing group

I selected the vertex inside the destroyed part and went to the vertex's sub object. I pulled down the scroll panel at the right bottom of the interface, and scrolled all the way down to the paint deformation panel. There I found the push/pull button and pressed it, and adjusted the number. I entered the following values: Push/Pull value: -3.5 mm, Brush size: 65mm, Brush strength: 1.

Note that for the Push/Pull value, a minus number pushes the surface, and the plus number pulls the surface.

Working with paint deformation

I then started to adjust the surface until I got the result that I desired.

The final destroyed wall edge

Here's the quick render result, not bad huh! The technique is pretty simple, yet it can give a cool result and add realism to our environment scene.

The destroyed wall

Here's how the technique applied in one of my 3d work

That's all about how to do destruction modeling in 3ds Max for now. I know some of you might say it's better to use ZBrush - this technique is more like a traditional technique if you want a quick result without moving to another software. I think its fast, and works great!

Hope you can find this tutorial useful. For a handful of other 3D tutorials from me, you can visit my blog site. I'm committed to sharing what I've learned as a 3D artist and aim to post at least one tutorial per month on that blog site.

I hope you find this tutorial useful.

Related links:

Check out more of Andrew's tutorials on his blog
Interested in trying out destructive modeling for yourself? Try 3ds Max
For more tips on modeling in 3ds Max, check out the tutorials in our books

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