Materialize was just released for free. What exactly is Materialize? In the creators own words:
Materialize is a stand alone tool for creating materials for use in games from images. You can create an entire material from a single image or import the textures you have and generate the textures you need.
Materialize is production tested, having been used to generate metallic, smoothness and occlusion textures for the Uncharted collection. It is very similar in scope and functionality to Substance’s B2M or the free ModLab.
Essentially you start by feeding it a diffuse map, which you can then edit as you desire, then create a height map, normal map, edge map, smoothness map, AO map and metallic map automatically.
Each step of the way you have fine tune control over how each individual map is created. For example, here are the controls governing the creation of the normal map.
You also have the ability to provide your own maps from file if you have them, simply use Materialize to generate the maps that you are missing. There are also features in place for creating tiled maps. Of course to go along with all of it, there is a real-time preview of the map you are creating, including multiple skyboxes and control over the post processing effects show in the preview.
When you are done you are able to export your generated maps to a variety of different texture formats. Just an all around amazing application and one that should be added to every texture makers toolkit! Watch the video below to learn more and see Materialize in action! There are also some tutorials available here if you wish to learn more.