Thursday, 28 February 2013

Sketchy Pen and ink Level First pass(etch)

Sorry iv not posted here in a little while. Kinda hit a creative wall for a bit but think im back on track again now , and i mgiht drop the oil paint level no, il do the pop art one and see how much time i have, but the prison/oil paint level is big and could take ages.

This level has been ambiguous for a while now but its the final stage and i felt that it needed to be epic. So at first I was going  to make a castle but that was realy similar to the prison level which comes directly before. (Prison level may be droped)
So I Looked at my villan character and decided since he is a skeleton that i should make his setting a graveyard which also fits the sketchy style, reminiscent or Tim Burtons concept sketches.

I started out sketching a general look of of the level I wanted:

In the lower left is a basic sketch of the level.
I knew that i wanted a simple arena which the 2 characters could just fight.
I started off with a basic area with a bounding invisible wall
And some grvestones.

Grave models with textures, I drew some shading detail into the texture and emphasised the edges with black:
I then duplicated and moved around some gravestones around the outside of the arena and added a very basic tree with a black material, the graves also have th sketchy shader shadow mask applied to them like in older posts:

Then i started to ad some verticality to the scene in the form of hills again much the work of Tim Buron, also added a fence as its something which all graveyards should have. 

Heres the skull texture for the hills:
I dont realy like this texture , i thought it tried to emply to much 3d shape in the skuls and bones, but just looked flat, and the realy noticeable tiling wasn't nice aether.

At this point i still dint like the way things were looking but kepet with it and just adding stuff to it.
I duplicated this 1 hill and modified it in size and shape to go around the perimiter.
Also drew some clouds with 2 frames to flicker between.
Clouds inspied from the ones in the edge chronicles books
there are 2 objects containing some clouds and each rotates at a different speed to get a feeling of depth.

I had had enough of that skull texture so made a tock texture andin like the clouds inspired by the edge chrnoicles style.

I also brought in the  brick texture from the twig media test:
 And the simple stone textre from twig too

I also started setting up the ground plane for texture splatting. Much like in the You are the dragon test.

Also updated the shadow mask texture to one from the Did this as it was a good tilabe texture and the other sketchy ones i made were hard to tile. Plus this wraps evenly over surfaces because tis on 90 degree angles

I continued to refine and add multiple layers of texture splatting. Adding some detail and variation in the hills. the scene almost looks like a snow scene now but i felt the textures need lot of white otherwise the scene woudl get far to buisy. Used a layer of splatting to drawn in shadows cast by gravestones

I made the sky black to test what it looks like aganst the mainly white ground.
But didint like the overall feel as in sketchy pen images any areas of black are usualy dense sketches not solid color. It also somehow reminded me or Dr Seuse

I tried making a sketchy texture work in screen space but the size was far to big , I don't have this screenshot sadly but it looked horrible and detracting  But I started to look at what other nodes were available and came across the mapping node(never used before)
This node alows you to change the amount of times a texture tiles. I used to just make another object with the texture on a materail with the right tiling there and then refrenced it in the nodes. But this lets be do it all here, also you cannot use the view node attached to a material but u can to a texture. so now i can tile that nice tilable sketchy texture for the sky in view space.

I then fixed the flore nodes to show dynamic shadows, heres the nodes:(its almost to big for my screen and the node editor wont zoom out any more)

Also changed the outline on the boy and the shading to the same as in the monkey shader cross-hatch test.
The Villan get a white outline to help define him from the background  and also works to flatten him out, giving the piece a children's book feel somehow. the trees on the hill got the same treetment

Heres the level in Action:

This is where im at wit this at the moment, and will do for a first pass.
There are a lot of things i want to fix when it comes to the 2nd pass.
And i would also like to get a more complex Ai stytem in place for the villan as hes relay hard to get away from at the moment because hes constantly moving towards you.
The trees need updated and i might add a better moo and stars

There needs to be some more props in the actual game play areana but i dont quite know what yet that wont get in the way much.

Friday, 22 February 2013

Villan Character Pen and ink

So its eventually time to make the villain for the final boss fight
I did some more sketches:

This gave me a feel for what type of character he is.
When i was making the ortho sketch i changed the proportions a little more. as i thought it was important to make the characters limbs jagged instead of curved.
Heres the mesh , i probubly shoudl have made more geomitry in the arms around the elbows and the knoees, but ther is onyl minor pinching when its been skenned so il leave it like this.

Heres the texture sheet i made for him:
I used a basic pen sketch texture as his shadow texture.

And heres it all together:

I made his pen a lot bigger than the concept

And here is the animations and animated shaders in action:

this turned out ok still need to play about with the way to do the sky and make enviroments interesting.
Next step is to make hi s level, i think its goign to be in a graveyard with trees and fences and rewins in the background.
Level coming soon!

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Charcoal Level First Pass

During pitch presentation Lynn mentioned jokingly that the game would be finnished by crit week , so though it only right to aim for a first pass of all the levels by then at least.
Iv already did the first pass of the watter color and have started on the house interier.

Levels to do:(first pass, most objects needed for the final game)
Oil Pen
so far this list I'm already half way there. 
Hopefully can keep up this speed.

I just used standard techniques mostly for this test.
And most of the assets used are from the previous train face boy test.

the tunnel-
I used a similar fog set up to a previous post but instead of flat colours I used uvs and textures, so the tunnel apeares darker the further away it is.

Heres the nodes for that:

And heres the result:
Im still not to happy with the tunnel, i dont like that the texture is noticeable tillable, it was worse before, which is why i added the fogging effect, also it looks too clean and the ground shading dose  not match the walls yet

Still need to possibly add train carts, the train looks a little light and flimzy, might fix that later. some could have some randomness but not nessasary.
Make shadow plane stick to the ground.

And heres the game play in action:

I might make the boss next I think , Il post it as soon as its done.
Again heres the post on BA:

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Presentation Feedback

Presentation went really well, I felt the slides flowed ok, my legs were a little wobbly but was standing behind a thing so no one noticed.
I showed the stuff that iv been up to since last semester, I missed out some stuff for times sake.
I almost feel like i showed too much of some stuff and examples in the video collage were a little overlooked and didn't get enough attention but I feel i got the new final project across well.

The feedback from the lecturers was brief. 
In answer to Lynns question, yes i do sleep 
Robbin says that he would help me with my dissertation , and that he likes that i have focused mainly on the look of the game for this project. As for my game in 3rd year for his module i spent most of my time making the mechanics work and wasn't so happy with the overall polish and visual style.
Ryan just watched my pritty pictures and robbin just echoedd what everyone else had said.

From the feedback, or lay there of I feel the presentation went extreamly well.
Now i just need to finish everything.
Lynn jokingly said that the game will be finished by the next presentation but that is basicaly the plan at a rough level at least.

Also managed to beat my best for more slides in a presentation. I said i would cut down but instead ended up with 1 more slides than last time. Grand total of 48 slides, mabie go for the 49 or 50 mark next time , but its not as long between this  one and the next.

Bring on the next one

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Character Media tests

I mad this last week but only recorded it now.
We were invited to show off the Go away mr bear game at the DCA so we made buisness cards and i put the boy from this project on them to show different styles.

I just used the same techniques as i have in the previous tests , notice that i changed the watter colors eyes as the sphere didint look right for the style.
Also note that the animated outline canot be achived like in previous posts as when it gets exported to exe or ran in the blender player the displacmen modifier turns off :(.

And here they are in action:

There are still a few minor things i would like to change about them but they look good at this stage and i can move on. 
I also did miss ou the oil paint version of the boy, this is only as i still havenot did a test in this media and this is a level which might be cut at a leter date , and the fact that iv used all my black and whites  form all my oil and acrilic paints.

Sunday, 10 February 2013

Expo Ambitons

For the expo i want to mak emy space look like the art colectors house form my game, with paintings on the wall and decorative wallpaper. I Also want to have monitors with frames around them to look like paintigns but actualy showing my work. 
And have the final game on one too. 
this would be nice as if the game is left to idle or is paused people may question weather or not it is 3d or not, although in the past , that seems to be peoples first reaction anyway.
As iv mentiond in previous posts i would like to have a wiimote on a plinth with the micky mouse paint brush nunchuck to show the link betwee art and games, in this sketch I wanted to place a clay model of a characer from the game holding or leaning agains the wiimote in some way, to get some traditional sculpture into my projects too.

heres the template filled in with what i wanted :

I also stated in the form that thi smay be overambitous for the space and that the wall might not suport 3 monitors so i enquired about getting a larger space. fingers crossed. If all else fails , and im not alowed to do this i might just make a poster with loads of paintings on it and a wallpaer bg. Im shure i can leach a second monitor from the computer aswell, and the monitor could be heald up by a plinth or soemthing if its too heavy for the wall, i do realy want my game with a frame.

Looking at the courswork submision criteria it seem that I need to look into or explain other smilar installations or shows whitch iv been to or reserched. So...

The main exhibition i remember from being a child is "Game on"
A show whitch had several sights through the contry.
I saw it in Edinburgh with my dad, we wetn twice but the second day was compleatly packed.
This show basicaly went through the evolution of games from limited arcade games all the way up to cutting edge whitch was gamecube at the time. 
There were soo many sections with loads of screens to try all the games. For some areas there was massive projection screens whitch people could play multiplayer bomberman etc. 
Another notable thing from this show was the concept art work, in one of the sections they basically showcased the conecpt art for one of the final fantasy games and it was amazing to have art created to drive a visual style ofr a game on a will like it would be in an art gallery.

Dare to be digital has also been a big influence.
Iv been attending Dare since they had the first showing of Zelda twilight princess as the main attraction. Every year since has just got better as far as presentation. 
There are a few notable installations by big games companies though. 
Little big planet  This game was just about to come out and there was a huge following for it already. I was really exited to play it and there it was at Dare and .. it had an awesome booth. The game is visually stiled on a do it yourself theme with cardboard and paper and fabric as the environment materials, its also set at a really small scale so they you can see all the little details in the materials. This was reflected in the booth as it was made of cardboard and fabric and had bit plants and really good feel of the game. 

One other thing which was good at Dare was the You can cook ds game . They brought in a kitchen in the lounge of the place dare was being held and had the counter filled with ds's worth the game loading on it . You could look through the list of dishes and then a chief would prepare the food and follow along the steps. 

It seems that everything related to games installations must have something unique and related to the game to make them successful. Also another part of game installations is that the game has to be playable otherwise the whole point of it being a game is irrelevant. 

All of this has inspired my game instalation. The game takes place in an onld mans house who has loads of paintings on the walls, This is where all the screens come from and the wallpaper backdrop. Allowing the user to feel closer to the game. 

I have changed this idea as it would take a lot of time, effort and money to pull it off  and a couple more computers:S. As i ave not been given a larger single space i have simplified the design down to just beeing an easil with  a single painting in a a frame. Almost like its being unvealed , might need to gte a big white cloth too.  I have a more in depth post on this proposal in a later post.

Saturday, 9 February 2013

Watercolour level first pass

Been working on this level the past couple nights. There is still a lot of place holder textures in here but im liking how its feeling in general.
I started making my own watter colour images , cant remember if i have shown these yet but here they are. 
These are realy rough but wanted to get into the media again, and try to imitate the Work of Scott C 

After this i made some texture sheets:
Started with trees
Then moved onto bushes, rocks and grass
Then used the skybox texture from my previous example and  maped it to a cube in blender then painted over the seems using the cone brush in blender. 
Again using an old texture from my texture librery for the ground / grass texture
And last for now, the rock textures
Instead of making a uv map and painting it i thought it would be more reusable if i just made a general rock texture which could be sampled and reused where i need it.

NOTE: Make sure u apply materials to all the tree planes before u make a forest out of them. took like 30mins to manualy add every material to each object. Not doing that again.

I also added a wattercolor frame from the old watercolor test.

Heres the wire frame so far

I used the watter from the you are the dragon for right now and its just on a huge plane whitch rotates to give the effect or a running river.
hers a screen shot of the game running:

And here it is in action:

I will work a little more on this then move onto the next level as My mentor Ken says that i should get all the levels playable to a level first then finish off polishing. I supose  kind of like this approch as it means im walwys jumping between styles and , almost like a new project.

Monday, 4 February 2013


After trying the new control template the thing it was missing was 360 compatibility.
I am still looking into the wii mote as I think the contrast between the looks of a typical wii mote with the paintbrush shaped nun chuck will highlight the union of art and games which my project is trying to achieve.
I did a quick google for using 360 controller as a mouse to look in games and found this nice little piece of software called: Keysticks
It worked better than i though and but its not free, its a 1 off payment of 15$, whitch is resonable thers also a 30 day free trial

I know there are free alternatives out ther like key to joy but iv had bad experiences with anologe sticks pulling to the left and stuff before whitch this program somehow fixes.

Heres a video of it in action (Note u can turn of the on screen thing , just wanted to show it was working):

And this is also a test for the new controle template using the placeholder art for the house interier.

Saturday, 2 February 2013

The search for the right controle scheme

After my friday meeting with Ken this week we decided that i have to settle on a control scheme and get it nailed soon. As a result of this im back to playing with controle schemes.
 In one of my previous posts I attempted to make a control set up for this game project but some technical hurdles cause me to stop working on it and i was left only half working. 
I have the problem that I'm working on an older version of blender which only a few people who still use the game engine are using. This makes most of the new scripts and templates unusable.

However I did just find this :

I remember seeing it a while ago when it was in development and realy lied the style of the graphics, kinda going for the same things I am. 

Some images of the artstyle of the template

This set up uses keyboard and mouse which is not the my ideal choice,(I wanted to play with the 360 controller, or a wiimote and nunchuck)

It has all the nessasary components i need for a template, and more. 

Things I need it to do:
  • Moment, no clipping through walls
  • Jumping, because jumping in games is fun
  • Camera control:the camera is mapped to the mouse and zooms in when need objects so you can always see the player this was one of the problems i didn't even have a clue about how to tackle myself.
  • Compatible it works on blender 2.48a / 2.49b which is perfect.
  • WOuld be nice if it was compatible with 360 controller but non essential

It will take a little getting used to though it uses the logic states which i have never realy played with before, but im willing to learn.

I am eager to test some glove pie stuff with mapping buttons if this control scheme works out good.
The reason being for this is that there is a special edition Epic Mickey controller Nun-chuck which resembles a paintbrush and i think this would fit the project nicely.

Iv orderd one of these and its on its way

It test this template with my animations in the next few days and hopefuly have 1 level doen by the end of the week.