Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Post-Apocalyptic breakdown

  • Crafting the idea
  • Reference
  • Lighting/Color correction
  • Detail shots

Crafting the idea
I had wanted to do a post-apocalyptic environment for a very long time, somehow I felt very overwhelmed and couldn't really choose which direction I should take it. I got very inspired to do this thematic environment because of Unreal Tournament 3, Gears of War series and lately a game I'm hyped about is The Last of Us. I always had a warm heart for “the beauty of destruction” but this time I really wanted to step up to the plate and just do it.
As I am writing this I must admit that I started to notice how much I have learned throughout the last couple of months, not just with texturing but also modeling, organization, shader creation and optimization.
During this breakdown it’s obvious to me that I could have used a more efficient workflow and I figured how I could improve this when I start a new project. Also I’ve become more daring to show off my work in progress, when I started the environment I wasn’t sure at all if it was a good idea or if fellow artists would like it at all.

I must say that all this knowledge doesn’t come out of nowhere, I’ve read whitepapers from other developers, I read books about lighting and composition.

Goals: Large post-apocalyptic environment, create detailed textures, lots of high poly asset sculpting, shader experimentation (environmental shader and screen shaders e.g. vignette effect, lens dirt), use DX11 features like Tessellation and IBR.

Timespan: I have been working on this project on and off for the last 6 months, in total I estimate I would have worked on it for 2-3 months. And it’s still on going with additional asset creation.

To do: Vehicles (Modeling/texturing a Taxi and Bus), re-adjust/improve additional buildings, perhaps a fly through video?

During the process I looked up a lot of reference just to establish the main idea or props that I felt would fit the scene. I’ve heard it isn’t always a good idea too just focus on videogame concept art but when I got inspired by The Last of Us it was hard stay away from this style.
When I started to work on the project I didn’t had in mind in which direction I wanted the environment to push. Later on you’ll see my starting point, where I just had been messing around with temporary meshes and started crafting a broken wall in UDK. From there I started looking for possible ideas and came with this post-apocalyptic city.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

The weekend of Texturing and Shader Experimentation

Hey everybody!

It has been a month already since the last blog post where I did shader testing as a tribute to Mirror's Edge. Again it was a very busy period for me and my PC had to be repaired (again). This weekend I had some time left and after playing Gears of War Judgment, which I like very much due to the artistic style. Because of that I had decided to mess around with some texture creation that is dedicated to this art style and thought it was time to step up the shader work a bit more.

I had a lot of fun just experimenting with shaders in combination with the textures I've sculpted over the weekend. Not just the sculpting was amazing, creating these detailed assets, also doing the texture baking in Zbrush was fairly new. After baking these textures and finalizing them in Photoshop, I started working on the shader in UDK.