Sector Defence update

Over the last two weeks I have been creating a “mining laser” for the tutorial level of the game, which is set inside of an asteroid mining field. The low poly has been finished, and I have been working on the high poly for the last few days. However it is taking longer than expected, due to some baking issues. Which I had to ask the rest of the group for help on.

Here is an image of the current state of the work:




Art essay

During the time I was working on my imagined worlds I took time to research various concept artists who have done work that could be linked to cyberpunk, and futuristic themes. Ryan church is one such artist. Church is best known for his designs of vehicles, planets, and architectures as a concept design supervisor on George Lucas’s Attack of the Clones, Revenge of the Sith, and of the alien tripods in Steven Spielberg’s War of the Worlds. Church also worked on James Cameron’s Avatar and is responsible for the newer design of the USS Enterprise in the Star Trek films. In 1994 Church started a full time scholarship, majoring in transportation design, at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. “I wanted to make sure I learned the nuts and bolts of industrial design as well as the illustration skills to be able to create a vehicle or an environment that makes sense and looks good”.

Churches style and technique involves a lot of pre-existing textures and images, he is very resourceful when it comes to re-using both textures, and older images, mixing them with newer work. Creating a sort of matte painting type concept that also has a mix of traditional art included. Church’s vehicle designs have quite a mechanical feel to them, which make them really feel alive and part of the environment, as if a lot of thought has been put into how the vehicle will work, not just how it looks.

I have looked at all the major and smaller movies that church has worked on, and both Tran and James Cameron’s Avatar are by far my favourite.  So, these two movies are the ones I decided to review. Starting off with Tron, there isn’t too much concept art for Tron by church, however Church clearly focuses on two different points within the scene the rocky environments and Tron’s city, even within only a small amount of concept art. Church shows clearly exactly what he envisioned Tron’s city to look like. A ‘high sci-fi’, clean smooth environment. However, the rocky environments around the city are bumpy and rugged, the opposite of the city. The rocks around the city are created using matte techniques. Which adds to the complexity of the art. The same goes for Avatar, Church clearly shines when creating vehicles within a set environment, this is not shown as much in Tron. However, in avatar Church has created concept art for mechs and several different flying vehicles. The insides of the vehicles were created using other images and sticking them together, at least in the vehicle cockpits, another use of matte painting techniques. Overall, I like the concepts that Church has created. I enjoy the complexity of mixing digital painting and matte techniques, as it adds to the complexity of the images and makes them feel more alive and ‘fleshed out’.

Church’s work has clearly influenced both movies. This clearly being more prominent in avatar, as most if not all of the vehicles he concepted were used in the final movie, with not much about them being changed. Most of the fauna and flora he created were used in the final movie. The general look of the environments he created were also used, however not many of the environments were taking into the movie looking exactly the same. However, it is clearly visible that he influenced the look greatly. As for Tron, the general look of the city and surrounding area was quite similar, the clean city and rugged outskirts were kept. However the city itself was changed around, the second city in the sky was taken out and replaced with a much more full and living city down below. However once scene in particular was clearly influenced by church’s work. The area where the main protagonist reunites with his father, is almost a copy of the cave scene that church concepted. Just a few things like bookshelves and a pool were added.


Creative and technical model

Today is the hand in date for my creative and technical model. I will be using this blog to hand it in.



I started my creative and technical model by researching Chinese buildings in heavily populated areas, as the environment that this building would be going into, is a near future, cyberpunk like scene. I thought that the heavily populated and industrial architecture of modern day china, mixed with futuristic parts would look great

These are the images i used for reference.

Image result for heavily populated chinaImage result for heavily populated china


I also researched Chinese and Japanese signs, especially signs in downtown tokyo. As they have a futuristic feel at nighttime, with all of the neon lights and busy feel of the city.

Image result for neon tokyo

Image result for neon tokyo

Image result for downtown tokyo nightlife

Image result for downtown tokyo nightlife

Early models

I started by heavily copying from my reference material, mixing and matching parts from the images that I like, and this is what I ended up with. This is an ambient occlusion render of the low poly with a wireframe.

Early model

However, I had several problems with this early model. One of which was that for whatever reason, the high poly model would not bake correctly in substance painter. Another problem was the poly count, even though there inst much on this model, the poly count is 4500. Which is higher than preferred, as our absolute maximum per building was 5000 polys. Since I was running into these problems I decided to restart, which did not take to long to redo, as i reused the signs and the pillars.

Lowpoly faces with frame

The  new building was looking quite similar to the old one. However, it is taller, the windows all have window frames which makes them look a lot nicer. I remade the door and the garage. The garage is simply a plain which I planned on adding normals too.

High Poly

After Uv unwrapping the new building, I decided to try and add some normals in substance painter. So i started on the high poly model. Here the the Uvs for the main building body, pillars and signs, and the high poly model.

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Highpoly faces with frame

Here is a render of the low poly, with the high poly baked onto it, in substance painter.



After I baked the high poly onto the low poly, I took a look at substance share for a nice brick texture, and ended up finding the perfect one. I applied the brick texture along with the with a rust smart mask to the main body of the building. For the windows, pillars, garage and door I just used normal materials that substance provides. In my opinion, it looks pretty good.

Beauty without sign.png

I then moved onto the signs, after looking at my research, this is what i came up with.

Sighn uv

Beauty render.png

Here is a render of the final building by itself, and the building in the final scene.

render 2.1.png

Building 2



Imagined worlds: 8

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Today, Billy, Steven and myself imported all of our assets into Unreal. Billy rendered out the assets once they were in unreal, so we could update our blogs. However not all of our assets are currently in. We each have one building in the scene, the lamp posts, my concrete barricade and Billy and Stevens bike. Everything in the scene looks fantastic, and we are sure that all of the other stuff we need to import will look just as good.

Imagined worlds: 7

After finishing one of my buildings the other day I started on another asset. A lamp post. Billy had originally researched and modeled the lamp post. However, after he moved on without texturing I took over. I started by unwrapping and UVing. I then imported the FBX into substance and started on texturing. I started by making a clear version and then making 2 different, dirty and scuffed versions. The dirty versions are also covered in graffiti and stickers.

Lamp post.png

Lamp post 2.pngLamp post 3.png

Imagined worlds: 6

As the deadline for our project is slowly getting closer, as a group we have realised we might not make the deadline in time. As our scene is a lot larger than expected. To speed up our work, and make sure we finish in time, we have dropped a few smaller assets. I am also texturing parts of Billy and Stevens assets, while they both focus towards the modelling side of things.

Building 2 render.png

Today I finished my 2nd model completely. Here is a final render of the building.

Imagined worlds: 5

Since my last post, as a group we have created a new trello page, and gotten rid of our old asset list. The trello asset list is much easier to manage. Since then we have looked at what our scene needs and how it can be improved, we have done several scrums to help improve upon our work. During these scrums we decided that we need smaller assets, like stalls, barrels and debris to fill the open areas. The open area in the middle of the scene will have several stalls, and the ends of the streets will be blocked off with chain link fences.Render 5.png

Imagined worlds: 4

Today the group caught up on some scrums. To start with we discussed where we were as a group, what we have done, and what we need to complete. Looking at our asset list, burn down chart and the feedback from our lecturers, we have come to the conclusion that we have to improve upon our planning. We have improved upon our planning by creating a trello page and moving our asset list to there, and getting rid of the old asset list. We decided upon trello as it is an easy site to manage and control between the three of us.

Now onto model progress, we have compiled all of the buildings we have done so far, and created some ambient occlusion renders. To see what the project currently looks like together.

Render 1

Render 5