Legacy:Blender track modelling tutorial

This tutorial will show you how to model a simple track for SuperTuxKart.

Keep this in mind, however :

  • This tutorial is not intended at people who have never used Blender, if you are a total beginner I suggest searching for online tutorials or buying/borrowing a good blender book, and spending a few weeks getting used to blender. That's what it takes!
  • This tutorial covers only the modeling; other pages will explain how to make the drivelines, add collectibles and export the track.

Making a model for the road

Let's start by making a small road segment. You can start with a plane, or any other shape that looks like the road you wish to build. I generally add it at (0,0,0), no idea if it matters. Orient the road segment along the X axis (you could orient it along another axis but X is the default so that's easiest for us). Add UV texturing to this small road segment if you wish.

You may end up with something that looks like :


Extruding the road

Then add a new curve by using menu Add >> Curve >> Bezier Curve. Give a name to this curve, for instance "road_path"

Select the road segment. In the properties panel, under the modifiers tab, add two modifiers to the road segment. First add an array modifier, then a curve modifier.

In the top combo of the array modifier (fit type), select Fit Curve, and in the "Curve" field just under, select your curve (in this example "road_path"). Check the "merge" checkbox.

In the "curve" modifier, select in the "Object" field the road curve (in this example "road_path")

You may not see much yet; but now make the curve larger by extruding more points in edit mode, and you should see the track segment automagically follow the track curve!


You can tweak the width of the road by going in Edit mode for the curve, selecting all points, and tweaking the value of "Radius" in the "N" panel

The segment and curve objects generally do not like to have scale/rotation on them. This means you should only ever scale the curve in edit mode, never in object mode. (If you already scaled them, don't worry you're not screwed up! Select both the curve and the model segment, then press Ctrl+A and select "Rotation & Scale"; then you will probably need to go in the edit mode of the curve, select all vertices, and tweak the radius property in the "N" panel, or simply select "Object Data" in the standard properties panel. and toggle off "Radius")

You may then enter edit mode on the curve and edit the curve to make a road pattern. If you wish to make the road go up and down, as opposed to being just flat, press down the "3D" button in the curve's properties, )

If you want the road to close (by a closed curve instead of having two separate ends), select menu "Curve >> Toggle Cyclic" or use keyboard shortcut "C")


You can also tweak the Twisting parameter, Z-up might be an interesting value to keep the road relatively straight up

Tweak the curve points so that the curve length is an exact multiple of the size of your road segment so that the road closes nicely (TODO: some blenderhead should offer a better way to make the road close properly as I can't believe it doesn't exist)

Your road will now look like :


Don't forget to bank the road in curves to increase drivability!


Adding scenery

Now, to make the ground around the track, we have two options.

If the road is e.g. a small mound (think canyon track), you can simply add the ground under the road.

If the road is flat, like in this example, it's better to fill the ground between the road. Duplicate your road object (Shift+D) so that we don't lose the original road curve if we ever want to modify it, then move the duplicate into another layer (shortcut: M key) so that the to duplicates don't get mixed up, and move to this layer. Then click on the "apply" modifier of both modifiers. We now have the road as a mesh.

Go in edit mode; there you can simply start creating lines/faces (use extrude "E" and make face/line "F")


You can then UV-texture the terrain too when you're done.

Then you may add trees, and/or other types of scenery - I won't describe this part much because any blender modelling tutorial on the net can help you with that :) Make sure to see the other articles to learn how to make moving textures, animations, and other visual goodies.