Blender for SoaSE
Blender is a professional free and open-source 3D computer graphics software product used for creating animated films, visual effects, art, 3D printed models, interactive 3D applications and video games. Blender's features include 3D modeling, UV unwrapping, texturing, raster graphics editing, rigging and skinning, fluid and smoke simulation, particle simulation, soft body simulation, sculpting, animating, match moving, camera tracking, rendering, video editing and compositing. It further features an integrated game engine.
There are 3 main sections that need to be transferred between XSI and Blender.
- the 3D mesh
- the mesh points (weapons, lights, engine effects etc)
- materials and textures
OBJ can be easily import or export to and from multiple programs.
OBJ files will transfer the model, 1 UV map, and 1 diffuse material.
Mod Tool 7.5 OBJ Exporter
FBX is another common format that both XSI and Blender uses but the XSI version is outdated. Autodesk has FBX converters I used to successfully test exporting from FBX 6.0 in XSI, to FBX 7.0 import in Blender. This also imported the mesh points but flipped the scene.
FBX® 2013.3 Converter
DAE or Collada imported the complete scene into blender with the file structure intact.
File > Crosswalk > Export
Select COLLADA 1.4.1 from the File Type drop down list.
The major difference between XSI and Blender are the rendering engines. XSI uses 'Mental Ray' and Blender uses 2 called 'Blender Render' and 'Cycles'.
The workflow I use uses TGA textures in Blender, then I assemble the channels into .DDS using GIMP. Then connect the the new textures to the material is XSI, and export to .MESH.
Export Blender to XSI untested