Creating a scene in 3dsmax
From Mod Wiki
Configuration (Installing plugins & mapping drive X:)
As of now there are only two 3dsmax plugins avaible, they work for max versions from 6 up to 8 (I personally tested max 7 and max 8 sp3), unfortunately there is no max 9 plugin yet...
The plugin is avaible here:
Instalation is pretty easy, You just have to unpack the archive into your 3dsmax root, which will cause "plugins" folder to be overwritten (that is ok). However, in order for plugins to work correctly You have to map drive X:, You can do that by using the .bat file that comes togheter with X-RAY SDK (start->programs->X-Ray SDK->Map X-Drive), if you have deleted it, just type this in notepad and save as .bat
subst X: /D subst X: "YourDrive:\YourSDKdir\level_editor"
After this is done the plugins will work correctly and You will have new drive in my computer which will point to level_editor folder in x-ray sdk, you have to repeat this each time you turn your pc on.
Creating & Exporting Scene
Ok, we have our STALKER plugins installed, now we can finally start mapping, in this tutorial I won't tell how-to-model-in-3dsmax because that's not what this tutorial is about. I suppose you've read the documents that come togheter with SDK so I don't have to describe basics of how Stalker models work.
The only problem i encountered are 3dsmax Units, if anyone have idea how to set proper units to work with stalker/maya units, let me know. You can always scale your map in editor but it would be nice to have good units in max.
Anyway when You have your models done, you have to use S.T.A.L.K.E.R.Mtl instead of Standard material (to change your material to S.T.A.L.K.E.R.Mtl click on button which says "Standard" in material editor and choose S.T.A.L.K.E.R.Mtl from the list [you won't see it if You have mental ray renderer, it works only with Default scanline renderer]). In your material options there will be new additional stalker material parameters rollout with three possitions where you can choose Shader types for Engine, Compiler and Game. For description of those head over to official SDK docs.
When You have everything modelled, textured and ready for game, select the objects you want to export and head over to utilities tab and click more, select S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Export. Open S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Export rollout that appeared in utilities list and hit Export Editor Objects (You should see a list of selected objects on bottom), plugin will automaticly select import folder of the Level editor.
NOTE: All objects have to use properly set S.T.A.L.K.E.R.Mtl otherwise the exporter will crash when attempting to save .object.
Type your name (ie. mp_mymap_terrain), now if everything goes ok, all objects you had selected will be exported as one .object and you will be able to import it Level Editor without any problems (any possible export errors will appear in the console pop up of stalker plugin, if there is no any, it means You succeed:))
For compiling and running map ingame, take a look into SDK documentation.
Thanks for reading, hopes it was usefull.
-Buddy the Designer