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So I was trying to bake a hair cap for my character as base for yet another try to make good realtime hair.

My current setup:

  1. I made a hair cap object, unwrapped it, put a hair particle system on and groomed it.
  2. I duplicated the hair cap, removed the particle system and used 'shrink/flatten' in edit mode so it lays over the hair from the other object.
  3. I converted the particle system to curves, put bevel with caps on it in the curve settings and converted to mesh.
  4. The duplicate got a material with a texture node and new texture for baking.
  5. Cycles, Selected to Active.

Now I stumbled upon something new for me:

This is the 5^³³th baking try. At least emotionally. (why, what's up with those holes and squares)

Before this I tried:

  • with and without light
  • Cages, Extrusion/Max Ray Distance with several different values
  • the baking target as big as the hair particle object
  • baking directly on the hair particle object
  • using UV as mesh
  • baking hair directly as particles
  • having not so many crashes
  • bake with alpha and not just plain black or white
  • pulling my own hair out
  • taking a break
  • comprehending what went wrong
  • coming up with new ideas
  • reevaluating my hair choices

So I have no idea why it isn't working and would love to have a solution for this problem.

(Please help me)

File:

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1 Answer 1

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I think there is a misunderstanding about the baking process and the desired result.

Particle hair only works in Blender and is resource-hungry. you need to use a different technique for game engines.

One technique for game engines is to fake the required geometry with so-called hair cards. They are low-poly planes that use transparency and normal maps to looks like hair strands. To cover the head you need about rougly 250 of them. To speed up the grooming process you can use the particle system and the Particle Instance modifier to lay them out.

=> blender.org: Creating real-time hair in Blender (there is also a video linked)

Another video of Daniel Bystedt: Creating Realtime Hair in Blender (Stockholm Blender Meetup, February 2020)

What you tried does not really work. When you convert the particles to a mesh (or curve) the result is really high-poly - 4 million verts for your hairstyle! You can bake this high-poly mesh to a low-poly haircap (normal map+diffuse) but the result looks very bad.

Here's the bad result. As you can see even with 4 million verts you have not enough hair to cover the skin of the head beause there are no particle children. These would boost the number of vertices even more.

Converted hair particles (mesh) joined with the haircap, 2 different materials: converted hair particles

Baked normal map + diffuse: baked normal map + diffuse

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  • $\begingroup$ This is exactly the result and baking procedure I was looking for! Thank you! $\endgroup$
    – Himhoji
    Oct 6, 2021 at 18:56
  • $\begingroup$ I just wanted to bake hairs onto the cap, but I guess I was too unprecise with my question. My bad. I knew of the hair card stuff and actually did a lot of that, but I was trying something different and was too dumb for basic baking apparently. $\endgroup$
    – Himhoji
    Oct 6, 2021 at 19:05
  • $\begingroup$ Ah, ok! If this baking is what you want, then you just need to convert the Mesh object (=the converted particles which is actually a curve object) into a mesh. Duplicate the haircap and join them. This is finally the high-poly object that you can use bake to bake with the low-poly haircap. This technique is good for beards :-) $\endgroup$
    – Blunder
    Oct 6, 2021 at 19:25

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