Lumberyard
User Guide (Version 1.16)

Normal Mapping Best Practices

To get the best results, use the following best practices when creating normal maps.

You can use the following practices in your content creation tool to get the best results from your normal maps:

  • Render normal maps using the following swizzle coordinates:

    • +X

    • -Y

    • +Z

  • To minimize errors generated by mipmap levels, set the UV padding in your DCC tool to a minimum of 3 pixels.

  • When resizing a normal map, use bi-linear interpolation and not bi-cubic.

  • When you create mirrored UVs, check the seams and make sure the UVs are facing the same direction on both sides.

  • To prevent unexpected lighting issues, make sure the normal map was not altered by the following:

    • Bi-cubic filter

    • Sharpening

    • Alpha blending

    Changes to these settings can negatively impact the values in a normal map.

  • Preview the normal map in the Material Editor to check for rendering issues.

  • For naming conventions:

    • Normal maps with a gloss map in the alpha channel should use the suffix _ddna. For example, road.tif would be road_ddna.tif.

    • Normal maps without a gloss map in the alpha channel should use the suffix _ddn. For example, road.tif would be road_ddn.tif.