Bake Lighting into Props

So my 3D skybox is couple hundred brushes-- and due to my map approaching the brush limit, I converted the 3D skybox into /3/ seperate props using propper, which I’ve aligned propperly. (See what I did there?) Even with vertex lighting enabled, I still get my skybox blackened. Here’s a screenshot from a transition from brush to model with my level to 3D skybox.

You can see the brush below and the model portion above. Is there some way I can “bake” the lighting onto the model properly, or do I have to stick with brushes (Or make a more well lit map, which would ruin what I have right now.)

You can export the stuff to a modeling program and bake the texture there.

How would I get the baked texture to align with the skybox values I have?

You should convert the prop to a prop _ static if it isn’t already. Then set a lighting origin for it inside the map. If you get it right the prop will blend. It might be better to leave some brushes that seam into the world as brushes instead of models.

They’re all prop_static and they’re using per-vertex lit lighting. I’ll try, I suppose.

To bake lightmaps onto staticprops, use -staticproplighting in vrad.

If you want to use per-vertex lighting, you may run into the problem of the lighting origin on the model being used in an area with no light. To counter this you can set the lighting origin to an entity.

For static props this is:
For dynamic props use the same as above but with a path_corner entity instead.

Keep in mind all of these rely on how many vertices your model has. Less polys = less lighting information.

Oh, I used -staticproplighting. They are static props.

It probably didnt work because I didn’t compile lighting on final (I used it to test.)

I’ll try it on final.