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Modular Project Week 5

General / 19 July 2022

Feeling a bit stuck at the moment. It's been about two weeks since I last posted and that's because I'm a bit stalled with sculpting right now.

I've been obsessing about this trim sheet over the past two weeks, and not making much progress.

I guess the key issue I'm facing right now is what kind of style I want to sculpt. It's been a while since I touched ZBrush and I'm admittedly feeling rusty. so far I've largely just been going on autopilot, looking at what other artists are sculpting in their stylized projects.

But I think that's the wrong way to go about it. Stylized work is nothing without real-life reference, so that's what I'm going to do now - Look at real references and think more about what to simplify and emphasize to improve my sculpting.


Modular Project Week 4

Work In Progress / 05 July 2022

Been pretty busy this week so pretty much the only I got done was the trim sheet layout. I spent a lot of time thinking about how much texture space to dedicate to each trim, and whether or not I was going to make several trim sheets or just one. In the end, I decided to challenge myself to fit as much as I could into one trim sheet without sacrificing visual quality. 

This week I'll do the sculpt and get it into in engine. 



Modular Project - Week 3

General / 28 June 2022

Into Unreal

Goodness, it's already week 3. Well, this week, I got my scene into UE5 and got to work making sure my scale was correct. I had to make a number of changes to the proportions of the original concept to make more sense in 3D. I still think the buildings still feel a little small, but I think it will add a little charm to the scene in the end.

Parts

I got even more granular with each piece; now there are many different size variations, though I could go even further. I'm going to move into trim sheets next week so I'll worry less about making everything perfectly scaled right now though.

Next week I'll be moving into the more exciting part of the piece, trim sheets! Should be fun!


Modular Project - Week 2

General / 21 June 2022

Block out and Parts Assembly

Short post this week. I finished blocking out most of the scene and separated it into parts. I had to make a few adjustments to the proportions of the buildings to make more sense with the scale of the door below, though that might not look obvious yet.

I didn't quite get this into Unreal Engine yet, but next week I should have everything set up in the engine as well as some initial work on the trim sheet.

Thanks for looking, see you next week!

Modular Project - Week 1

Work In Progress / 14 June 2022

Introduction

Hello! Welcome to week 1 of what is hoped to be a 12-week journey. I'm going to do my best to document what I've worked on each week. (Hopefully every Tuesday night)

My goal in this project is to better understand how to build modular environments for games. This includes trim sheets, modular pieces, and other re-usable elements. In addition, unlike in previous projects, I'm to give myself a better framework and a public log of my process. This should, in theory, give me more discipline, and get feedback faster than before. Time will tell.

Concept & Reference

This time the main concept I'll be using is this lovely piece by けみ猫 on Twitter, who was nice enough to give me permission.

I was really drawn to the cute, intimate, storybook-like feel of this piece. It also felt like it would be relatively easy to make modular as there are very few unique meshes needed here. There's also a nice variety of foliage in this piece as well, which will give me an opportunity to improve my foliage skills. I love making stylized art and would love to work on a game featuring an environment like this someday. 

This definitely needs to have real-life references added for each material, but it's good enough for now. I'll come back to this later on.

Planning Out 

I did a draw-over of the art to help plan out the trim and tiling textures I'll be using. Then I copied it into a Trello I set up below. For now, since I haven't worked out dimensions, the modular pieces I'm making don't have measurements yet, and aren't yet properly separated in the Trello. That'll be updated later.

Most importantly, the trim sheet is going to be broken up into these elements:

  • Staircase Step Trim (red concrete)
  • Several Wood Boards - Most important trim
  • Roof Wood Planks - Could you just hue shift normal planks?
  • Studded Wood For Boat Trim
  • Wood ends of planks, boat roped place.
  • Rope strand for the boat.
  • Blue Roof Tiles 
  • Metal Bands for piping

Though I'm considering splitting each different material type into its own trim sheet and using the Ultimate Trim method, I think for this project I'll keep everything in a single trim sheet where possible.

 I also had a question regarding trim sheets and got some great answers in this thread on Twitter if you're curious. Basically, my question was how to make two different shells in trim sheets meet without having a very noticeable seam. For the most part, though, it looks like it's something you have to work around, whether that's with deferred decals, blending in a tiling texture with a mask, or some other coverup. Personally, that's a fair tradeoff for a great technique, but it's something to keep in mind when I get to making the trim sheet.


I'm a little unsure of how I'm going to accomplish some of the SFX, but nothing seems too advanced. Though getting the water to look the way I want might be challenging.

Next Time:

If all goes to plan, I should have a blockout in Unreal Engine and an initial lighting/camera setup; with some clearer direction on how I'm going to make the trim sheet.

Thanks for reading, see you next time!.

"NMG" No More Grid Borderlands 3 Treasure Chest Competition Entry

General / 25 November 2019

Here is my entry for the No More Grid Borderlands 3 Treasure Chest Competition

It was a lot of fun making this project. I learned a huge amount about Blender, and I really enjoyed making something less "realistic" for once. 







I plan to work on my entry a little more over the coming week to polish it up for my portfolio, so I'll make a proper post on Artstation then!