StemCell Textures & Materials

StemCell Textures & Materials

Texture Based Materials: The Key To 3D Content Portability

Note: If you are using Spec / Gloss workflow, please refer to the StemCell v1 Textures & Materials page. Please note that this will soon be deprecated, so we highly recommend updating and reviewing the content below.

By focusing on Metal/Rough exclusively,  we can provide a mainstream pipeline that is not only easier for you to submit your work, but also provides better export formats for customers that will work in modern DCC applications, game engines, and real time online viewers.

A Brief Overview of the Metal/Rough Workflow

For those accustomed to working in Specular/Gloss, a simple way of thinking about this adjustment is to take the Diffuse, Specular, and Glossiness map, and exchange them for a Base Color, Metallic, and Roughness map. Besides this, everything else stays the same! The rest of the textures should all feel familiar to you.

Unified Workflow

Still, there are many applications and renderers that don’t yet support a PBR workflow. That’s quickly changing, but for the moment, we still need to rely on a traditional Spec/Gloss workflow if we’re using certain apps. This is why a true StemCell requires both workflows. It’s the only way a piece of content can be exported to so many different outputs.

Setting Up Textures

When setting up your textures, here’s a few spec points to keep in mind.

  • Texture file names must be prefixed using the name of the material they are applied to, contain a descriptor, and be suffixed to include the channel name as defined in the table below. material_descriptor_channel.png (i.e. chrome_rusty_bcolor.png)
  • Textures must be in the correct color space, also defined in the table below.
  • Descriptive names – where possible the texture name should reflect the name of the geometry it is attached to. Eg “table_top_wood_bcolor” is more favorable than “table_02_bcolor”.

Here is a breakdown of current supported texture maps, their proper gamma contribution settings, and the proper suffix for each.

Channel Name Color Space Naming Convention (Suffixes)
Albedo/Basecolor sRGB _bcolor
Metallic Linear/RAW _metal
Roughness Linear/RAW _rough
Normal Linear/RAW _norm
Opacity sRGB _opac
Transmission Linear/RAW _trans
Transmission Thin-walled Linear/RAW _thin
Self Illumination/Emission sRGB _emis
Ambient Occlusion sRGB _ao