Product: War Brotherhood, for Luthbel's Veteran War Dog
Product Code: ps_tx3158b
Programs Supported: Poser 7+, DAZ|Studio 2+, Poser 6 (view below)
DAZ Original: No
Published Artists: Arien
Released: February 2010
War Brotherhood is a texture set for Luthbel's Veteran War Dog, by Arien. The textures were design to also mix and match with with Arien's previous “Brotherhood” series: Midnight Brotherhood, Arcane Brotherhood, Wild Brotherhood, Dawnrazor: Mourning Brotherhood, Imperial Brotherhood, Rogue Brotherhood and Ludus: Sword Brotherhood
For other promotional images, visit the War Brotherhood Gallery
War Brotherhood consists of:
- 5 Full Texture Sets for Luthbel's Veteran War dog; all textures can be matched with others from the Brotherhood series:
- Bonus textures: plain textures for the vests, matching all 5 styles in the series
- 5 Textures Sets Include
- 20 Boots Difuse Texture, Bump, Displacement and Specular Maps (4096 x 4096)
- 24 Pants and Weapons Difuse Texture, Bump, Displacement, Specular, Mask and Normal Maps (4096 x 4096)
- 24 Shirt and Weapons Difuse Texture, Bump, Displacement, Specular, Mask and Normal Maps (4096 x 4096)
- 23 Vest Difuse Texture, Bump, Displacement, Specular and Normal Maps(4096 x 4096)
- 1 HDRI TIFF file for reflections
- Poser 7+ MAT Poses (.PZ2) using 16bits png displacements
- Separate Poser 6 MAT Poses (.PZ2) using jpg displacements
- HSS DAZ Studio Material Presets (.DS) (Requires Elite Human Surface Shader)
The outfit was designed to have different looks possible, and to be combined with other existing clothing items. In general, the sets are matched as follows:
- Obsidian to Assassin
- Emerald to Healer
- Amethyst to Mystic
- Cobalt to Astronomer
- Jasper to Ranger
You can turn parts off by making them invisible, or you can also use the free expansions provided for items like Mourning Sun and Cobalt Hierophant to facilitate this further. Links at the bottom of the page.
To apply the specific high-end materials for either Poser 7 and above or DAZ|Studio, go to Pose\Night World\Veteran War Dog\War Brotherhood\War Brotherhood P7 - Studio\, make sure you’ve got your item selected, and then click on the required MAT pose. The Poser materials use advanced shader nodes and displacement, and because of this, require you to render using Firefly, and have displacement enabled. More information at the end of this document.
The Poser materials are divided in two. The materials found on Pose\Night World\Veteran War Dog\War Brotherhood\War Brotherhood P7 - Studio\ use 16-bits pngs for better displacement, and are only usable on Poser 7 and up. Poser 6 users must use the materials found inPose\Night World\Veteran War Dog\War Brotherhood\War Brotherhood P6 Only\; these materials use jpg displacements instead, but because jpgs only allow for 256 levels of grey, some differences in the rendering are to be expected.
As part of the functionality of Studio, you can find the Studio shaders in the same folder as the Poser 7+ shaders; just click on the desired thumbnail and Studio will automatically load the Studio shader instead of the Poser one. Be aware that while every effort was made to get them as close as possible in both Studio and Poser, in some cases we preferred to play on each programs’ strengths, and so the ones depicted in the thumbnails might be slightly different from the ones loaded. You will need the Human Surface Shader to be able to use these HSS materials (available with any of the Elite Textures, included with the free Stephanie Petite 4, and separately as ds_ap47), and also that the render times might be longer than standard Studio shaders.
Metals and leathers are a big part of this set, and so special care was taken to render them as realistically as possible, while keeping to the aesthetics of the whole series.
The metals are set to raytrace, as are the leathers, as this provides better effects overall. This means that it is fundamental to have items in the scene to reflect, or else they will not look their best. This also means that when rendering, you must enable raytracing, with a recommended minimum bounce of 2, otherwise the reflections won't work as expected. You can replace the raytraced reflection with a reflection map, but the improvement in render times will be negligent, and the overall look will not be as good, so you shouldn't do this unless strictly necessary.
The metals and leathers in this set are not set to raytraced, using instead HSS’s HDRI provided image. This was done as raytracing would cause longer render times without any significant improvement in realism for the common user. However, it is possible to set them to reflect accurately its surroundings. To do this you will have to go into the Reflection section in the Advanced Surfaces tab, and change the Reflection Mode from “Environment Map” to “Raytraced”. Keep in mind that to look at its best, there has to be something in the scene other than the clothing item and the figure for it to reflect. Also, if you do want darker materials that don't reflect as much of the environment map, you can darken them by darkening the “reflection colour” slot in the materials, or reducing the percentage value for “reflection strength”
If you find that you need your metals and leathers to have more of a glossy sheen, it is a good idea to give them something light to reflect. Set up a few white or light-coloured primitives outside of the camera view, or even above, so the metals have something to reflect; this should liven them up. This is a trick used quite often for car photography and 3D renders, and should work well for you. Raytraced reflections will make your renders longer, but if you want the metal to reflect less, you can reduce the reflection percentage in your surfaces, or you can go back to the reflection maps settings in the provided materials.
- adjust the bucket size according to your computer’s performance
- higher Pixel Samples settings produce renders where the textures show much better.
- add Ambient Occlusion to the lighting if you have the processor power to do so, as this will increase realism. Alternatively, you could do a separate AO-only render and composite in Photoshop.
Finally, remember that good lighting is essential to obtain good raytraced reflections. If you are using Studio’s or Poser's default lighting, or very low levels of light, or light that doesn’t shine onto the metal, it won’t have the same look as a properly lit scene. It might also be a good idea to include a specular-only light, as it will help improve your renders, in particular if you are using an IBL or GI style of illumination. Also, as mentioned above, make sure that you are using the right level of samples to avoid jaggies, “dirt” or “spots”; if necessary, raised samples and shading rate, both of your lighting figure and in your overall render.
UberEnvironment is a perfect companion to the HSS materials. However, be aware that light materials, like pale skin or light shirts, and materials that are heavily displaced, like the pants, are very sensitive to “spots” and “dirt” caused by the Ambient Occlusion even when using the 4X settings; you can prevent this by using higher Occlusion Samples and Shading Rate. These settings can be changed in the Parameters Tab of the UberEnvironment figure.
Be aware that you can use the included HDRI image in your UberEnvironment to have a light matching the environment reflected on the metal, although it will be very light and might wash out your image if the values are not controlled.
- always use Firefly, and the manual settings
- enable raytracing if you are using raytraced shadows, ambient occlusion, reflections or refractions; a setting of 1 bounce will suffice if only the former two are used, otherwise use 2-3; this set uses both AO and, raytraced reflections, so the latter will be a better choice.
- for the displacements to show, displacement needs to be enabled; minimum displacement bounds of 0.020/0.030 are recommended; some of the materials in this set use displacement so enable it when rendering.
- if you are on P5-6, disable texture filtering, and always set the maximum texture size to the size of your bigger texture; for War Brotherhood, this value shouldn’t go below 4096px. Reducing this value will result in muddy or blurred renders.
- for draft renders, your min. shading rate can go to 2, but for final renders, always reduce this to 0
- similarly, use a value of 2 or 3 for the pixel samples for drafts, but you can go much higher up when doing final renders; anything between 3 and 5 might be a good compromise for screen usage, although for very smooth or detailed renders you could go quite higher; be aware, though, that this will increase your render times
- If you're using PoserPro7, Poser 8 or PoserPro2010, disable Gamma Correction, or your displacements will not work as intended.
- items look dull or odd when rendered: if you’re using Poser, check that you are using Firefly to render. In Studio, make sure you have HSS correctly installed. If you’re using a third party software like Vue or Carrara, edit the material to suit your application better
- in Studio, there are black blotches when rendering using UberEnvironment: increase the oclussion samples
- Studio surfaces show no bump, or some other surface oddity: the very first installation of HSS was flawed, and installed items in the wrong place; re-download either your Elite textures or HSS and reinstall
- can’t find the Studio-specific materials: Studio mats can be found within the same folders as the Poser 7+ materials; Studio will recognise them and load them instead of Poser’s. Just select your material as normal.
- materials in Studio look dull and lacking detail, with no bump, no displacement: you might have accidentally used the P6 materials, and loaded a Poser mat instead of a Studio one; please select your materials from the right folder
- some of the hss materials render all black/all white: make sure that you have the correct HSS version installed; if you are running Studio Advanced 64 bits, you might have to install Studio 32 bits, then re-run the HSS install; you will now have the option to install 32 or 64 bits to different places; install them both as needed; this is a problem that ocurrs sometimes with the HSS installer, and the above should sort it out.
- displacement appears to be “moved” or not matching the textures in Poser 6: make sure you are using the materials found under the P6 ONLY folder
- the shirt is poking out of the trenchcoat when rendering: this is caused by the displacements used on the shirt and trenchcoat; you need to apply the “UnderCoat” morph to the shirt to avoid this
- Coming soon: extra morph for the shirt to combine with Midnight Hunter's coat