Tuesday, 21 January 2014

final sculpt

final sculpt finished ready to be worked into a game mesh and some bake's. im quite pleased so far with my progress i think ive been able create the quite aggressive heavy set character i original wanted in toe lui and concepted. i did make certain changes after getting crits from my peers  so i changed the shoulder pads to turn out more for a better silhouette and added little pike on the helmet also to brake it up more. and i changed the trousers to make them less baggy because i think they were to exadurated for the style i want to go for.  


Begging my retoplogy i started by decimating my sculpt to get it down to a work able tri count for exporting to 3ds max. First i exported it for the high polly version with all the sculpt detail once i had that in 3ds max i then used zremsher on areas and brought them back in as base for my low Polly mesh so i don't have to strip model everything, im still going to have to edit it to get the flow and loops correct and the right deformation's for animations down the line.


I wanted ti add some detail to the waist line to break up the character torso and to give somewhere for toe lui to be able to attach his sword. Originally i tried masking out a section and building out a belt but i struggled a bit to make it look realistic and so blockey , so i found it easier just to make a quick belt in 3ds max and just make the finishing details and scratches in zbrush. At the moment im enjoying the back and forth between base meshing and sculpting and back again because i find it quicker way to mold things to the way i want them. I also added in a wrapping fabric underneath the belt to stop the wearing of the leather and to add some more diversity in textures.

I want to make one of the thick weaved shields so i made a low polly model and turbo smoothed it so there will less division in zbrush and take less time to sculpt ive found the for the accessory's if i make them in 3ds pretty much how i want it to look the in zbrush i can just fine detail and work into it.

I worked back into the model to try and brake up the shape of the ridges with some noise to stop it looking so uniform and plane because of the harsh climate and viscous lifestyle the mongols lived there weapons and Armour wouldn't be pristine, it would be useful for worn . In the diffuse ill add the fabric weave of the top like in the suit of Armour rather than model because that would be too time consuming  and a good texture with good bump map seems a smarter route.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

fmp research 

I have been trying to brake down certain relevant character models for the same platform that are to a very high quality like ubisoft's blag flag characters. 

I was particularly interested in how they make the hair for the models because of how realistic it looks it seems that just lots of built up alphas as i thought but just to a very high standard. I i was also looking to see how a higher standard they take there sculpts to before working back in a modeling software.
 I also found out that the triangle count for the main character Edward kenway is 25,000 tries not including props and ive given myself 30.000 tries plus props so i thing its a good target.

temujin update: aged 18 at the point im going to model him captured and beaten up for information tired to a birch tree

in the book it says hes grown tall for a mongol and long wirey muscle "they coudlent be bothered to braid there hair and when they cut it was just enough for hunting".
sculpting updates

I then took the some time going through the model and braking up the symmetry, by adding more detail to the scaring and a broken nose, i also tried to bring in some slight weathering on the skin around the eyes cheeks and scalp where the harsh climate gets the most which i may have made to subtle and could need more work. im trying to sculpt as fast an effectively as possible because want the sculpting phase to be a faster process to keep on schedule so it order for that its need to be fully sculpted by next Monday, so i can start retopolgising.
Working through the sub tools i started detailing from the bottom up i chose to only make one boot to try keep the tris lower ,because at the moment everything is very high because of all the different sub tools. I sculpted the boot trying to keep to my British armourey reference and the boot would be made of boiled thick leather.
Again using my reference all the Armour suits were not made from metal but a very thick leather and fabric weave. So rather than texturing the fabric on to get a better bake i sculpted using the standard brush and built up layers of it.

At the moment i like the way the character looks without the helmet but i want him to be able to carry it round or attach it to his belt or horse or wear it. 

Monday, 13 January 2014

FMP updates 
toa lui mesh constructions

toe lui the wrestler this time round on the first character i chose to make a lot simpler base mesh because it slowed my down allot in the last brief and ive found this way more productive.i built my base mesh quite bulky so i can cut in to build shape but i no i want my character to look more like a strong man competitor than a bodybuilder so in the sculpt i layered up some fat around the torso and fat arms.

I want toe lui to look like hes been in some scraps and as a wrestler im going to give him big cauliflower ears and maybe a slight broken nose. One of my main issues is that hes only meant to be around 20 to 25 so still very young and i wanted to add some wrinkles but, from the research ive done because of the harsh climate they have very thick dry skin and deep grooved wrinkles even at that age so ill to get a good mix of youth and wrinkles.

I have found it a lot faster this time to make a few different sub tools from the base mesh and then its easily layered and better organised and is a better brake down of my character. 

Im starting quite simpler for the clothes and im going to build it up in layers staring with Armour boots and wrist bracers and see how it goes but at the mommnt im on schedule.
The eyes are normally one of struggling points and nose and for this project i really want him to look very authentic so im trying to take some time to make the facial features right. The Armour brakes down the silhouette because so thick and heavy and just sloped over the Mongolians and because of how big i want my player to look i think i need to further exadurate the form to relay show toe lui strength. 


My idea for this project was a Japanese female warrior and also one of the onna-bugiesha i wanted to design quite a simplistic character. My main focus being more on the everyday house wife trained as a samurai as the research ive done suggested about the onnna-bugiesha. during this project i really wanted to stick strongly to my intial concept and not stray to away from it so throughout the hole project i kept my initial project near by and i think it shows through in my final piece. But i did change slight things form intial idea like the way the robe fell from the belt line and the pattern because, i felt it was to flat in the beginning and i changed the sleaves because it flowed better and gave a interesting silhouette. I had to learn alot of new things this time around to try get my character to the next level by using zbrush and retopologsing and baking, i did encounter several hiccups and had a lot of back and forth throughout the project with these things the main problems i had were getting the high Polly back into 3ds max and retopologsing i tired a few different tools do it but in the end i strip modeled it but it took a big chunk out of time limit which was my biggest issue. But once ide done that baking i found quite easier and gave me a really good starting point for texturing especially the ambient occlusion. at the beginning of the project i set out a week for each big part of the project mesh construction, retop, unwrap and texturing and rigging but it dint play out that way i gave my self such big windows of times because ide be using a lot of new tools during this project and i underestimated how long the back and forth process between zbrush would take. I think though this project gave me a realy good example to base my fmp characters on and the major things i need change in my workflow.
My intended outcomes for this project was to produce a high quality character and im happy with my final outcome i wanted to learn a lot of new things for this project ready for the next and i achieved that. The only things i would like to have worked on more if ide of got my workflows faster or had been given more time is fine tuning most of the project because when i got to every major stage of the project it was taking me to long so i had to rush certain aspects. Mainly my texturing and final rig because those were the part i left myself least time and struggled with the most . but overall im pleased with the final outcome.

Friday, 10 January 2014


Getting near to the end of the deadline now so i quickly textured the environment and made some alphas still trying to keep the main focus on the character. 

 I also really liked the idea of having falling blossom around the character if i had more time i would put it in udk and do some some effects but instead to keep time constraints im just going to use alphas on the ground and tree to make i look like there falling.
I also decided to put stray hairs because it breaks up the face and make the silhouette more interesting. at the moment i think the fabric need more detail in the textures and the skin complexion is too western so ill need to edit those things.
 One of the things ive been struggling with is texturing some good fabrics so i went back to my mood boards and research and had a good look at the different types they used and took reference images, and tried to bring those through. not much time left so i made some quick prints and duplicated them to get a pattern to bring about more life to the character and i think it helps it pop and not be so bland. 
 now iv finished my diffuse and rendered out a new bump map from that and edited and put it over the bake to get some more detail. On the body diffuse i tried to focus on the cloth textures and make them grainier and sharper.  
 On the face my main focus was bringing out the detail in the hair and skin blemish but using my bake as my main bump.

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

fmp updates
toa lui concepts

After the British armory museum i had a good idea of the look of the Armour i wanted to produce for my character. I want to go fro thick heavy weaved fabric to give toa lui and even bigger feel hes already meant to look large but the way hes described , in the book i imagine him very large. it says in the book that hes the best wrestler and strength is unparalleled and from the research ive the really strong wrestler have very thick muscle but not very lean like linebackers, so i want to make him look fat but with alot muscle. I then moved onto some thumbnail's i like the idea of animal fur covering his shoulders over the Armour because the scene will be set in winter so i will need add a lot of clothing. 

 I also did some hair and facial hair design a different scaring ideas to try get a feel for the character , because i know im pretty much set for the body design wise so i need to spend some time designing different accessory's to give him some character. 
One of the things i always struggle with when character designing is portraying an attitude or personality and toe lui described as having a flimsy temper and could flip at any minute so really want to make him look very aggressive and cruel.

My next character temujin is meant to be quite good looking and good guy in the book the person your routing for so i want toe lui to be the complete opposite. i want his face to have quite bad skin and light scaring . In this sketch i tried to show him a bit more chunky and looking more Mongolian.
I also went to the local stables and asked if i could get some take some photos of the horse's. For the later part of my project i did some quick sketches of the horses as well and then took them back and worked over them in Photoshop to do some different Armour and saddles.
baking and texturing

 Finishing my sculpt i moved onto working on my game mesh and retopologize it witch took a lot longer for me than i originally thought it would. I tried using a few different tools to best retop it like poly draw in the graphite tools but i dint find accurate enough i found the most successful way was to just manually strip model it.
 I separated my ids into separate meshes so i could bake them individually because i found it easier to tweak. The baking took a long time to bake on my PC but they came out well i did normal pass for my normal's and for my ambient occlusions i did one flat and one with a skylight because i dint think on the flat ao there would be enough definition but a mix of the two gave me a good place to start.

I then just blocked in some color so i could get a feel for my character with the AO. I started with quite plain color's but i don't think it made her look very feminine and made her look very bland ,so brought a bit more color in but still trying to keep it plane to fit the house wife idea of my project.
I wanted to get some of the environment out the way so i can focus on the texturing so from my initial design i added in a simple turntable stand and whats going to be a blossom tree.

Friday, 3 January 2014

FMP Brief

Outline: to design characters and set from a scene from Conn Igguldens  book wolf of the plains about Genghis khan early life.

Produce: high quality games realistic assets  including characters a horse and small playable environment.  and usable descriptive concepts while keeping a well detailed blog to track my progress including wip’s 

Platform: 360 and ps3

Two Characters 
  • 30,000 tri count including props and Armour within 2048 texture budget 
  • Texture sheets within 2048 texture space including ; diffuse, specular, bump and any others as a bonus
  • Rigged with 28 bone structure and simple animation test rig 
  • Concepts and orthographic designs historically accurate

one armoured horse/pony

  • 15,000 tri count including props and armour 
  • Texture sheets with 1536 texture budget (1024+512) or broken down smaller
  • With rig
  • Concepts and orthographic designs historically accurate

Small playable environment

  • Fitting the tri count of the characters
  • Fitting the texture budget to characters
  • Concepted scene/environment

Tools : 3ds max , zbrush , udk, Photoshop, and an appropriate rendering software