Exercise: Baking a hard surface normal map
This is an exercise submission on the exercise Bake a Hard Surface Normal Map
This submission did not pass.
Don't get discouraged by exercises that don't pass. Use it as a learning experience and fuel crush it on your next one!
I've removed all other models excep thte low-poly normal-mapped model from the Blender file, because I still can't get it working correctly in Sketchfab otherwise. :)
I added bevels on all hard edges, though I feel they are still a bit too subtle for the larger ones. The low-poly model I recreated myself from the high-poly model. The normal map is generated on 2048 x 2048 pixels using 6 render subdivisions on the cage object.
The render in sketchfab looks a bit iffy imo. Shading is a bit weird. The shading for both Evee and Cycles in blender does not have any of the odd shading like the weird line/split on the top of the model.
Furthermore, every 90 degree angle detail in the model which was going to be baked into the normal map has been sligtly altered to show a bevel from the side (making the base a bit wider).
E.g. Looking from the side to the big roster rectangle you can see that the surrounding rectangle (surrounding the inner rectangles) has depth. Also when looking from the front, the 'insets' on the both sides of the gun (attached to the same part of the gun as mentioned first) also have their sides (left/right) visible. Same for the very front part, which had a straight 90 degree angle to the plaque with the 4 screws. That plaque has been beveled (=shrunk inner rectangle) some more for nicer highlights in the normal map.
Rules of the Exercise
1All sharp edges must appear rounded, without appearing split.
2Some "visual handshake" details must be included where multiple surfaces intersect.
3All normals should be pointing in the correct direction, without obvious artifacts.