Sunday, April 25, 2010

MTV Cribs

Finally, the weather allows me to type this message from my garden again. Although... after 10 minutes I'm usually sick of the flies and reflecting sun on the screen already. But just to celebrate the temperature and to keep an eye on our daughter who is feeding rocks to the fishes, I'll give it a shot.

Anyway, I was finally able to pick up the flashlight, attach it to a hand-joint, and switch it on/off. Sounds not too difficult, but it also required the editor to get several upgrades such as defining attachments, adding spotlights and flares inside a model definition, and so on. It's always that damn editor that slow down progress. Then again, once it works, you don't need cheap programming tricks or workarounds to get things done. Like it or not, editors are part of the job.

I'm still busy with animating the player model to properly hold that flashlight though, so I don't have nice pics of a robot walking around with a MAG-lite yet. But, since pictures were pretty scarce last weeks, I decided to create a few new pieces of scenery:

It took quite a while to get it this way. Nice visuals isn't just a matter of fancy shaders and a few good looking textures. It's the complete setup. Having the right combinations of materials, good light placement, deciding where to put litter or not, respecting some theme, and so on. One glitch is enough to spoil the whole thing.

To create interesting scenes, you need to have some architectural skills. Which I clearly don't have. An architect probably first imagines a scene until it's printed into detail into the mind. Then he finds the materials and tools to create it. I'm not coming further than creating a blanco 3D mesh in Lightwave, and then start throwing textures, lights and objects into my little world until it finally looks ok. I'm also limited to my textures and objects as I simply don't have the skills and time to create perfect high-res textures or objects to fill the scene.

However, if I ever want to get some help from 3D modellers or texture artists, I'll first need to create some attractive screens to prove the engine before they take me serious I guess. So, I'll do my best. One thing I like about this scene is the medieval "Angels versus Demons" painting. If you're not into gaming than at least the maps could give you a museum tour. Those old (religic) paintings always give me the creeps. Not just the content, but also the mindset. Guys like me create horror just for the fun and thrills. But people like Dante probably actually believed and feared the demons and hell they depicted. In times they didn't had internet Devian art, movies, or Clive Barker books for inspiration... A bunch of sick dudes we had those days, really. Whish I could hire a guy from the past and put 'm behind Photoshop...

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