PHASEgaming

Jason Pook's Games Design Blog


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Client Project- Session 9

Last Session

So just a quick recap, last session i tasked myself with a few more buildings to do which i did ahead of session 9 which would be our next installment of group critique. Everyone showed there buildings and was given constructive feedback and some progress was shown even with people who had been struggling so this was a bonus. Myself i showed my buildings 1 by 1 the quicksilver, pound world and cheque center, they received very positive feedback everything was to scale in proportion and for the detail i had managed the poly count was on the low side giving me much more room to add extra details in the future.

The group critique is to show our professionalism to give others constructive feedback being harsh or actually praise them for good work. This had some issues the week before with some not following the trend disrupting critique, but after a word from myself during the last session to be quiet i think the point had got across. The group was very professional towards all people who presented and gave some useful ideas. For example on Abbie’s building Kardomah her positioning of pillars and window frame was off as i rightly pointed out and others added to how could work out the right placement like putting a texture of the building front on onto a plane to get proportions perfect. Phil’s building I pointed out the window over hangs were not extruded for enough out and had multiple indents to them rather than flat which he said was working progress to build upon.

As a result to this group critique it had already been planned in advance to get 2 buildings textured by next week, Paul backed us up with this demanding it be done as the project should be alot further on. Myself i did 3 textures of my buildings and i left 2 for the next session which me and Phil have planned to take a tutorial lesson on texturing 101.

A rather brief blog post but being a group critique and it going well for myself with no improvements suggested it was just straight onto texturing buildings.

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Client Project- Session 7/8

I have combined these two sessions due to the 7th session Myself and Phil was pulled off from doing work on the Client project personally, this was due to we are further ahead in both work and skillset so our tutor Paul wanted us to go around the room and sort everyone who is struggling with certain aspects to get up to speed. The common problem seemed to be scale, people didnt have there grid set up properly so it snapped in ue4, snapping, the units setup was generally in metres when it needed to be in generic units for the engine, and then the way modelling should be done with buildings is the modular aspect to save time and increase work flow.

I spent around 35minutes with Rinalds, he had all of the issues above but once i sat with him and showed him step to step how to go about it he took it on board very well and seemed to improve. Im hoping with the techniques i showed him that in the next group critique session he will have come on alot, even if the building modelling isnt 100% as long as its snapped and to scale thats foundations we can build on in future. I then moved on to abbie and barrie who had the same problems which all i could do was tell them the right way as i did with Rinalds. Eventually i gave dave some feedback on some windowframes and pillars he was building modular for his building and then James had a slight issue with snapping despite also going round with me and Phil.

Each on of them i linked them to a free Digital Tutors course on modular building, it not only shows you the correct process it shows you texturing methods which will be the next step for everyone once we have a initial first street block out done. Found here: Digital Tutors modular design course That concluded session 7 hopefully this wont be needed in future so it doesnt pin the likes of myself and Phil back, but it was good to give som peer to peer learning to others in the group to build on the feedback from the previous group critique.

Moving on to session 8 now, Me and Phil felt it nessacery to really push on. We had been talking over the weekend about where we are at in the project and where we should be and its not as far as we expected, this being reinforced by our tutor Paul we took session 8 as the next gear. Phil took the group talk and requested we push on, we expect all buildings that have been set to be done in a basic model by now which should be 2 each, 1 for big building projects like viktors bank. We wont check up on them until next weeks group critique were we expect finsihed products and moving on. I added that no matter how far behind you are with your current buildings im sorry but they should be done and we are moving on to the next its now addition to your own time to get that done.

With that said the majority of people took absolutely no notice and carried on with there initial buildings. Me, Phil and James all collected new buildings to be getting on with we cannot afford to fall behind for other people, but as this is a group project the lack of collaboration was dissapointing. Nevertheless i collected myself 3 new buildings, currently the Poundworld, Quicksilver and Check Centre. I finished Poundworld and Check centre in the session and Quicksilver shortly after, they are basic models with some minor details to pillars but are to scale and snapped to grid.

Here are my finished products:

Quick Silver:

Poundland:

Check Centre:

I will be showing these on tuesday in our scheduled group critique session to show my progress and get any constructive feedback on my work. I have put these in engine and they are to scale and snapped to grid properly. I have now contributed 5 buildings and will be collecting more shortly as soon ill have assets to focus on aswell.


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Client Project- Session 6 Group Critique

previous sessions (1/2, 3 ,4 ,5)

Moving on in our project from last time where everyone had been tasked for a building to do over reading week as a basic model, nothing fancy not the end product just a basic model to see if everyone was going the right way about doing everything and to give constructive critique to them if needed. As Group Critique is a requirement in a learning objective that we are marked on in the course we needed to take this seriously and act in a professional manner, as we would in industry. Personally I felt i did this and then followed up my critique when spotting flaws in some peoples models by showing them ways to fix it after they presented their work to the class. Not doing the work for them but showing them ways that they can call upon in the future to rectify certain issues. For example James had Ngons in his model due to not having loops where they should be and therefore having extra verticies in places, just a quick resolve using either the cut tool or the connect tool and target weld.

My buildings recieved good feedback from the group, Phil pointed out possibly the back part of Marks and Spencers was too far back in the model in relation to real life. I had noticed this but due to not having measurements of that particular area it was just a rough estimate. I will still address this issue and possibly ask Phil whilst i do this to agree on a placement, possibly throw it into unreal engine 4 in the block out to see if it has the right feel and look to it. Other thn that my building crawshaws was a basic model, the building having alot of elegant and elborate patterns or facures a basic model is alot to work on to the final product.

here are my buildings to the stage they are at now:

M&S-

m&s basic model This all looks like one model due to having a simple grey texture placed onto all the seperate pieces, but all i did was model the building in a half then sue the symmetry modifier to model the other half, after that i modelled every piece seperate the pillars the windows were just one simple asset that i have duplicated and snapped together in the case of the windows to create the illusion that its all one model when actually its just lots of seperate pieces attached together to make a model. Im very leased with the progress of this so far and the scale has been nailed to a the tee thanks to the meter wheel making modelling alot easier for me.

Crawshaws-

crawshaws basicThen this is what is now crawshaws (still unconfirmed on what it was in the 60s as been unable to find any reference of it as of yet) looks alot more unfinished than m&s this is partially due to m&s taking longer but also because crawshaws has a very elegant facure with flowers and grapes etc on the building. so without them it is quite bland looking, i still need to model the top dome window part. And as you probably can tell due to not being on one side i havent needed to symmetry it yet otherwise it would be a step too soon. So thats where im at, i felt i could have been alot further along with this personally but this will be finished off soon no worries about that.

With all being said and everyone present showcasing there buildings for critique i decided to take notes throughout the session to pin down any common themes brought up and also what our next steps could be, so that if its an issue the ones who are not having these issues could do some one to one tutoirals with any people stuggling to show our abilities to work as a group and give peer to peer learning.

These were:

  • Texturing- General UV mapping, where to go next with the model, using different types of texture maps to improve the model, light maps, altas maps.
  • Lighting- The use of lighting to bring out a model really show it off, interior lighting/mapping.
  • Interior- generally everyone just designed the building from the outside, if we are going for realism surely the players will see through shop windows into the shops so a basic interior should be modelled with appropraite assets to fill it out and possible assets in relation to the football world cup theme we seem to be going with e.g. an idea i raised was flags on the windows and doors so that we wouldnt have to model the interior but that not be the case for every store as they will have a reputation, like a jewelers they will probably just have a simple pennant string with flags across a window its still showing support but its tasteful.
  • Little details- many of us have little details on the facure of our building like my building crawshaws has some flowers and grapes aside the windows, we have recommended basic low poly models of these in 3ds max and then to import them into mudbox or zbrush to produce a normal map which will give them realism without huge polycounts. Which sculpting and detail tutorials will be called upon and taught by us as not many have used sculpting software before.
  • Put into the engine- Most hadnt tested there buildings in the engine but we should be at the stage no matter how complete the buildings are to be enchancing our grey block out of the streets from basic bsp. so a collection next week of the building to go into the engine will be done regardless of building completion as at least we may identify scale issues or snapping issues etc.
  • Texture importance- some people had over modelled certain part of their building. for example things like window panes  had been modelled in when that is a simple texture and gives generally the same appearance. Other things like pillars or window frames had been all modelled into one shape of the building, its much easier and less straining on the polycount to model pieces seperately and simply push them or snap them to the model.
  • Take into account buildings next to you- this will be a test of our group work, even if the building next to yours isnt you building you will have someone else next to yours and if its all going to work in the engine you need to make sure that they snap together otherwise we will have a street full or gaps or overlapping z fighting.
  • Topology- breifly raised before when i helped james, having ngons or loops where they should or shouldnt be can be of detriment to your model. Mainly in texturing it could cause skewing or stretching, its mainly fairly simple to fix topology but taking time to do it will be vital to the project.
  • Building specific collisions- we breifly dipped into engine ideas moving forward in the block out, what we mean by building specific collisions is most buildings have different shop fronts e.g. my building m&s has a fairly deep entrace to the shop front due to showcasing windows whereas what is now the card factory has a very flat shop front. So with that in mind building specific collisions will have to be made to give the game that extra realism and immersion, because if we did one simple block across both sides of the street the player would be confused why he/she couldnt at least go up to the door of certain buildings.

This concludes our group critique my personal reflection is that i was concerned slightly with the professionalism of some students during this as its such a vital part of our project, but the issue has been raised and hopefully next time this wont be a problem. Group critique will be a regular occurence in the project from now on so that any issues can be resolved quickly and effeciently.

We have had 2 students go on the radio over reading week promoting our project and asking the people of hull for any assistance they could give us if you wish to contact us here is where you can find us:

Hotmail- HeritageHull60s@outlook.com

Youtube – Heritage Hull https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBggxbowlU24GJvQVSM2NtQ

Twitter – @heritagehull60s https://twitter.com/HeritageHull60s

Facebook Page- https://www.facebook.com/HeritageHull60s