What a difference a week makes

10 04 2016

So in the time between my last blog post and now the following has happened

  1. I moved back to Massachusetts, for a few reasons, primarily financial and also
  2. I got a job with Subatomic Studios doing QA work. Circular path? Maybe, but I’m enjoying it far more than what I’ve been doing work-wise the last three years.

In addition to that, I’ve also been messing around with Wings3D and Blender some more, trying to get back into the mindset of creating things even if they turn out garbage. A prime example of that being something I made last week. This box.

ThisCrateTookForever2

This box is dangerous(ly) ugly.

You can’t really see it from this angle but I did a really bad job of UV mapping it and really it’s not all that visually interesting.

But today, I decided to persevere and try again. Same Geometry, but now with a different approach to texturing using things like layer maps. The results are..quite satisfying to say the least.

NewCrate_BlenderCycles_Render

Enjoy this new and improved crate

NewCrate_Detail_HighRes

Closer view for Detail

This was a fun learning experience (despite it still taking several hours to do), and I also learned how to better use Blender Cycles for rendering to make things look better. Hopefully now that I’m back “home” and motivated I’ll be making more stuff both artistically and design-wise.

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Apologies for the lack of updates

3 07 2014

Due to a few extenuating real-life concerns I haven’t really been able to work on my games and other projects as much recently, but I have been working on them. Shuffle Breaker is getting some feedback and adjustments from the people at TIGSource as well as some of my friends. I also finally went back and textured the ship I was working on in Blender, deliberately going for a very flat, retro style:

Golden Jackal Front 3/4 View Golden Jackal Back 3/4 View

Granted it’s not perfect, but I think I learned quite a lot from doing it.

I’ve also been working on making textures and materials in Unity as a way of increasing artistic output. I did a set of wood textures which I think came out pretty well:

Two Types of Flooring Wood Paneling Basic Painted White Wood Fill with texturing A larger view of the test room

I’ve made diffuse, normal, and specular maps for everything, learned quite a bit, and feel pretty accomplished. I’m hoping maybe in the future to have something up on the asset store but we’ll see how that goes.





Will it Blender? – From Pixels to Polys

6 05 2014

So in between working on Shuffle Breaker and playing stuff like AC IV: Black Flag, Dark Souls II, and Mario Golf World Tour, I’ve also been diving back into making more complex things with Blender. I decided as a challenge to myself, to take the Golden Jackal ship from my Ablation prototype, and turn it into an actual ship.

If you don’t remember, the Golden Jackal looks like this:

GoldenJackalOriginal

Before I could make it 3D though, I decided to revise the design, and get rid of the side-mounted engine pylons in favor of something mounted in the back of the fuselage.

 

GoldenJackal2

And then using this as a template, I went to work, and here’s what I’ve got so far.

3D Gold Jackal Draft

Granted it’s not done, I sorta left out the wing pylons on the end and I’m not sure I’m going to put them back in, but not bad for about 5-6 hours of cumulative work. Hopefully the UV mapping goes as smoothly.





Shifting Gears

18 06 2011

So yeah I know I haven’t yet put up a gallery for Frozen Assets. That’s mostly because I’m not quite sure what to do with it. While the contest at TF2maps.net isn’t quite over it’s become pretty clear I’m going to be the one at the bottom of the list, and that’s ok. I made quite a few mistakes (especially in testing) and I definitely didn’t detail the map as well as I could have. So in theory I could spend some more time fixing it up, but I’m not sure if it’s worth it given the inherent balance problems that many reviewers mentioned. I guess they were right in calling it a first map as well, but spending 2 years learning Hammer only to make mistakes that I also made with Aleutia kind of stings a bit.

However if nothing else I can at least learn from this and move onward. With that in mind CTF_Server_Farms has been almost completely torn down with the intent to rescale and start over. Either that or I might try making another KOTH map now that I have a better grasp on 3D skyboxes.

Of course there’s other stuff that’s been taking up my time, namely learning Blender as well as learning Unity in an attempt to get back on the independent game development horse as it were. Now that I’ve found some good books and tutorials for both Blender 2.5x and Unity 3.x I’ve been making great progress and I really feel like I’m capable of doing something with both pieces of software. But time will tell of course.

And for the few who read this that don’t know yet, the biggest piece of news I have was that I got a job at Irrational Games for a contract QA position. Granted that means temporary work but it does mean I’m back doing work that I enjoy in the industry I love.