【3ds Max Tutorial】Polygon Modelling – Create an Object

This article is a tutorial for how to create an object with polygon modelling using 3dsMax.
Note: I used Windows10 for this tutorial


You need to prepare the following before starting this 3dsmax polygon modelling tutorial.

Install 3dsmax

For details on how to install 3dsmax, please refer to this article.

Basic knowledge about the tools

Have you gathered basic knowledge for the tools?
If you have doubts, you can refer to this article while going through the tutorial.


Have you mastered primitive modelling?
If you have doubts, you can start from this article first.

Previous Tutorial

In the previous tutorial, we learned about the basics we need to know before doing polygon modelling.
If you want to go through it again, you can read related articles from here.

Polygon Modelling

We will start the real modelling in this article.
First, let’s create a editable polygon.
We went through how to do this in the previous article.

This is the Mahjong tile size we created in the second last article.

Parameter 1

This time, create one 100 times larger for a Mahjong table.


Parameter 2

Change it into a editable polygon, and let’s start the modelling.

Modelling 1

First, we need to [chamfer] to make a mahjong table like shape.
[Chamfer] is a command to use for rounding corners, or sharpening.
Change the select mode to [Edge], and select the corner you want to chamfer.
Use the □ on the right hand side when you want to change the numeric values precisely, or when you want to add more segments.

Chamfer 1

Next, we will use [Inset] and [Extrude] to create table rims and the mattress part.
[Inset] is used to create new faces inside a face.
[Extrude] is used to extrude polygons. You can extrude in the negative direction too.
To create a table rim, I used [Extrude], [Inset], then [Extrude (In the negative direction)].

Extrude 1 Inset 1

Next we will create ‘a place to throw dice’.
We are going to use [Bevel] for this.

Bevel 1

The basic procedure such as extruding is the same.
Select the polygon you want to edit, and choose apply.
Enter the values.
You can use booleans to make them reachable if you want.


To make the details richer, I used extrude in the negative direction for the table sides.


Extrude 2

A problem occured here. A unneeded face got created, so we need to [delete] it.


Cap hole 1

But that causes a hole to be created in the bottom of the object, so let’s use a [Cap hole].
Change the select type to [Border], select the rim of the face just deleted.


Cap hole 2

Use [Cap hole], and a face will be created.
Next, let’s create the prop and table legs.
Place a cylinder, and change it into a editable polygon.

Transform it freely for a try.
But try not to edit the top and bottom polygon too much.

Extrude 3

We used [Extrude], but it’s not perfect. So, go to the top item [Group] in the control, and change it to [Local Aligned].

Extrude 4

The result is what we wanted. Delete all the polygons except the top one and the bottom one.
This is just additional information, but I will explain about the [Bridge] function.
It connects a rim with another.

Bridge 1

If you click the top and bottom rim in order, a new face is created. It is very average.

Bridge 2

All that is left are the legs. If the legs look cheap, the whole table looks cheap. Let’s try to make them look good. We are going to use some modifiers.
First, let’s create adjusters to attach to the legs.

We will use [FFD](FreeFormDeformation) for this. This function is more complicated than the previous ones we have dealt with, but is important and needed.

Choose [FFD 4×4×4] from the modifier list.


Check that it gets surrounded by a grid, then we need to [Set Volume] to the inside of the stack.
Change the viewpoint, and display the top surface.
Each point is editable, just as with normal objects.

This time, we will transform it along like the object.


We are done with the preparation now.

Change the select mode from [Set Volume] to [Control point].
We can freely transform it from there, so select each point and edit it.



Next, let’s create the legs to attach the adjusters to.
We will use a modifier for this too, and shape it richer.
The modifiers we are using are the following two.


First, create a shape for a start. Create a suitable sized [Box].

Add some number of segments.
The shape changes according to the order you apply the modifiers, so use your creativity to make it look better.

Use [Bend] next.
[Bend] is a modifier to bend the geometry.

Bend 1

Set an angle and direction, so it matches the shape you want.
Next, use the [Taper].
[Taper] is a modifier that sharpens the geometry.

Taper 1

Edit the parameters to create a shape you like.
Place the legs at appropriate positions, and use [Create Array].

Create Array1

The last step is to adjust the sizes of each part.


Once done, it wasn’t so hard was it?

Final notes

You have learned the basics of modelling now.
I hope this tutorial is useful for you and your future modelling.
But for that, you need to master everything in this series.
This is the last article in this series for modelling beginners.