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I've got a highly-detailed mesh of curtains, similar to what you'd find on a stage. The mesh currently has eight objects/materials (1 material per object), but in reality it only needs two - the large middle curtain and the gathered curtains on each side. The two side curtains use the same texture, and the four objects comprising the middle curtain all use the same texture.

What I'd like to do is merge the two side curtains into a single object (each side is currently 2 separate objects), then merge the middle curtain objects into a single object. After several google searches, I've found how to join objects but they're still appearing as separate objects.

Is there a way to combine multiple objects into a single one?

Also, is there a way to reduce the overall number of vertices and/or faces? The entire mesh currently has around 700k faces, and so far decimate can only get it down to around 350k before the mesh starts deforming.

BTW: Losing UVs isn't a big deal for me. Since we're only talking eight materials here, I can easily remap everything if I have to. My primary concern is that the exported mesh is as simple/optimized as possible while still looking good.

EDIT: If it will help, here's a link to the 3DS file I started with: Curtain Mesh

LINK: Here's a link to my blend file.

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I noticed that your file was made in 2.49. This is a very old version of blender, and I very highly recommend that you update to a new version if possible.


Using some rather aggressive decimate modifiers, I got it down to 75k while still looking fairly reasonable:

enter image description here

There are a few dark spots where there seems to be some weirdly positioned vertices messing with the normals, but these should be pretty easy to fix with a touch of the smooth brush or the simplify brush.

What I did:

  1. Joined the two side curtains into one object.

    To join objects, select them and press ⎈ CtrlJ. The selected objects will be joined to the active object (yellow outline):

    enter image description here

  2. Applied the scale by selecting the objects and pressing ⎈ CtrlA> Scale.

    It's usually a good idea to apply object transforms as a rule of thumb. The objects have a scale of .001. The object scale defines an offset which can be confusing and even cause precision problems in some cases.

  3. Merged double vertices on each of the objects to close the small gap in the middle of the main curtain and the side curtains.

    To remove doubles, enter edit mode (↹ Tab), select the part which should be operated on (selecting everything with A should be fine), and press W> Remove doubles:

    enter image description here

    I found that a threshold of about .003 worked pretty well in this case.

  4. Added decimate modifiers to each object.

    Note that you can copy modifiers between objects with ⎈ CtrlL> Modifiers.

Here is the resulting .blend. I've applied the modifiers, so it should open in 2.49 just fine.

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    $\begingroup$ Great answer! I love the GIFs instead of static screenshots - nice touch. I normally use 2.7 but in this case needed to export the mesh to a NIF using NIFScripts (which only works with 2.49 or lower). I'll play with this file and practice the techniques above. $\endgroup$ – Omegacron Oct 15 '14 at 4:52
  • $\begingroup$ Ah, okay (just checking ;) Blender is pretty compatible between versions, so it should work to edit the mesh in 2.7, then open the .blend in 2.4 for exporting. $\endgroup$ – gandalf3 Oct 15 '14 at 6:40

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