What is it?
This is a little utility I wrote to convert 3d studio (3ds) files to Ogre format.
What does it do?
For every trimesh in your scene the utility will produce a submesh. I assume that the scene only contains one object and all meshes belong to it. Things like lights and cameras are ignored. For every material (used by a mesh or not) an entry in the material file will be emitted. I handle ambient, diffuse and specular properties, as well as textures. If you have bump maps on the model they will be emmited as textures, but it is better than nothing and can be manually fixed up.
What doesn't it do?
It doesn't attempt to export entire scenes in any sensible way.. unless you are trying to get a single mesh from a single 3ds file and don't mind doing some fiddling after the fact, this tool probably isn't for you. That said, this tool will get you something that resembles the contents of the 3ds file into ogre format. Animations, skeletons, etc, are not (yet) supported.
Why not just use the official Ogre mesh exporter for 3d Studio Max?
I'm a coder, not an artist. 3d Studio Max scares me. It should scare you too (will anyone ever make a 3d modelling program that doesn't blow? Yes, I know, Milkshape, but it can't do high poly meshes) and the exporter crashes half the time anyway.
Where can I get more info on the 3ds format?
I used this reference to make the utility, but it is somewhat incomplete, so you will just have to reverse engineer parts of it.
Great, can I have it now?
I hope you find it useful.
It didn't work!!
You could try the ogre addon 3ds2mesh but it isn't under active development. If that doesn't work, please email me your 3ds file and a description of what is going wrong and I'll have a go at fixing it. Similarly, if you find a bug and fix it yourself, I'd love to receive a patch.