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Introduction to Furniture Products

If you are just beginning to contemplate creating 3D products for IMVU, then Furniture Products is a great place to start. Without the complex rigging of the avatar, or the tons of nodes you have to deal with in Room products, Furniture is about as basic as it gets.

You will still need to understand the fundamentals of building a mesh in 3D, and you will need to learn the steps necessary to tech your 3D model, export it from your 3D application, and import it into the Create Mode Editor.

What is a Furniture Product?

“In IMVU a piece of Furniture is any product that can be placed into a 3D scene, and it usually lives in the Furniture section of the IMVU catalog. Furniture can be anything you, the developer, can think of. Whether it is a simple cube or a treadmill with an running avatar animation, you can make and sell it all in IMVU. The biggest limitation on building Furniture for IMVU is your own imagination

It is important to note that a Furniture product is different than a 3D Room in which it will eventually live. Although they can share many of the same technical aspects, Furniture is officially a product that can be placed and moved around in a 3D scene.”

To build a Furniture Product, you are going to have to gain knowledge in these specific areas:

  1. Build a Skeleton, a 3D Mesh, and add Materials (textures) to your Furniture

  2. Export all of these assets into the proper Cal3D file formats

  3. Assemble your Furniture assets in the Create Mode Editor

  4. Submit your Furniture Product into the IMVU Catalog

Once you have gone through all the tutorials necessary to get from inspiration to final product, you will have learned many of the fundamental steps that are needed to get any 3D asset into IMVU, which means you are already on the road to being able to create Rooms, Avatar Accessories, and eventually the Avatar itself.

Files to Get You Started

We have some example files for you to look at, so you can get familiar with how furniture items are put together. For the purpose of these tutorials, we will be using 3D Studio Max 7 as the default 3D editing program in our examples.

Example Furniture Product files:

Each ZIP file above contains the textures and skeleton for each product as well as the product or CFL itself. You will need all of these to make your first furniture product in the Create Mode Editor.

NOTE:

Save this file with a new name, as you may need to merge facets of the original example 3D Scene into your new Scene if a mistake is made.

Each example Furniture MAX file contains several objects necessary to convert your idea into IMVU reality. These include a mesh or meshes, a Multi-Sub materials, and a Root node. Furniture that avatars can sit in also contain seat nodes, Catcher/Pitcher nodes, handle nodes and placeholder avatar meshes.


NOTE:

We at IMVU, inc. do not limit you in how large any individual piece of your Furniture asset can be. We do, however, limit the overall size of your final CFL product file to 2mgs (WHICH IS HUGE).

Download and runtime size is an issue that should be kept in mind whenever designing for IMVU. If your Furniture’s file size is too big, it is unlikely that your potential customer will purchase and download it. It is good practice to try to keep the texture size, vertex/face count of your meshes and animation length down to the bare minimum.

There really is no reason to have a 256×256 texture on a tiny facet of your Scene: it just won’t be seen. In fact, we have found that the smaller the texture, the BETTER it looks in IMVU. Go figure.

Updated on September 24, 2018

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