Models showing as triangles.

Started by milkmustachio, February 17, 2019, 07:23:43 PM

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I have downloaded Wall Worm since I am most experienced in 3DS Max. When I load the models All the polygons on the models are triangles. From what I understand, triangles should be avoided as they do not offer proper deformation for animation. I am in my second year of schooling for 3D modeling with Max, Maya, and Cinema 4D.

Are the models showing this way since I am using Wall Worm incorrectly? Is there something I should be checking/ticking to get the model's poly's to load properly?

Many thanks!



You are not doing anything wrong but there may be a gap in your current understanding. The model importers in WW import either SMD files or MDL files. Those are intermediary exports (SMD) and compiled game asset (MDL). Once an asset leaves the modeling app, it is generally converted into the game-engine formats. In Source all of the assets are triangles. There is no such thing as a Quad (and remember, a Quad is actually two triangles).

There is nothing wrong with triangles. And they do not inhibit proper deformation. But there are benefits of using quads during the modeling process. The thing is that the actual original topology (and quad architecture) is not likely stored in the game engine formats--they only have tris.

For the most part, the MDL loader in max is for simple tasks like reskinning a prop or representing a model in your level. For the most part, the intent of the MDL loader is not to actually do modeling work on them. If you want the actual quads that represented a prop before it was in the game engine, you'll need to contact the asset author/owner.


Thank you for the in-depth reply!

I am trying to create models to donate to a HL2 mod and show the in-game work in a sizzle reel.

Many thanks for the explanation and time for your reply - I really do appreciate!

Best regards,


What the actual benefit of using quads instead of triangles again, Wallworm? I'm just curious.


There are several benefits of using quads because of the shortcuts you can use to select things geometrically. Quads allow selecting loops and rings on your geometry which is not simple to do with triangles without making extra calculations and assumptions. This is why swift loop works only on quads. So make an editable poly in quads and in Polygon sub-object mode you can select a quad then SHIFT-Select and adjacent quad to see how the selection grows; or in Edge sub-object mode double-click an edge to see the selection grow. Those shortcuts are only natively possible with quads.

With a triangulated mesh you need to resort to non-native functions that have to make geometric assumptions (as with Swordslayer's Heuristic Edge Select script ).

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