Friday, November 30, 2012

"Pinning" a great tutorial!

    I was recently informed about a 63 part tutorial series that covered everything (almost everything) Blender has to offer. I would like to thank arashi256, their link was wonderful! It really helped me solve some modeling issues I've come across. I'm not finished with the series yet... I'm on part 54 I believe, so I'm currently learning how to unwrap UV's and create textures. Here is a link to the free and wonderful tutorial! Please check it out when you get a chance. The creator did a wonderful job with the layout of the series, as well as giving multitudes of information without going off on tangents. I know this isn't much to look at but the geometry on this model is soooo much better then anything I've done to date.

     There is no background for the push pin, sorry! This is my first model that doesn't have weird seams and internal geometry. It is very basic but, it works! I am really wanting to follow the tutorial after I watch it all the way through. The silly banana-man character looks like it could be fun to animate and play around with.

     Game news update! I've got a small concept going and am currently looking for a way to organize all the thoughts and ideas associated with a project. Does anyone have any suggestions? What should I use to organize and keep together all this junk in my head?!

     Anyways, more modeling to do tonight! I'm very excited to get some more complex models finished so I can have some stuff to texture and rig later on. I've got a cool looking robot mostly modeled, however, I think I want to go back and redo him. Using my new understanding of modeling I think I can make him way better! I hope everyone has a wonderful Friday!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Moving along, at a snails pace...

     How was every one's Thanksgiving? I took a bit of a break for the holiday. Today, however, I'm back at it. I spent a few hours tonight modeling and I think I've made some progress from the terrible turkey in the last post. Though, he still has a special spot in my heart. This little guy was so much fun to model! I found the reference picture off of Google Images. I've got a few screen shots to post here. One taken as I'm about to finish up with the snail and the other is the finished render.

     I have not quite figured out the whole texturing thing yet. Soon! I hope... I've got a bunch of tutorials and YouTube videos lined up for that. I know this model is very cartoon-ish, but that is how my game is going to look. I figured if I model in that style then I will become better with it and the game will look better. In theory that works, HA! If you have any suggestions please post a comment, I would love to hear some feedback. Please keep it constructive though. Tomorrow I will be posting about my plan for the game. Everything from style to story. The ideas are still forming as I continue to learn so they are subject to change. Until then, enjoy my silly little snail!

     - Eric

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Turkey. Turkey? Turkey!

    I know it is a few days early for Thanksgiving. However, like most of you, I have plans on Thanksgiving. So, with that being said, I spent some time putting together a special treat! I modeled a cartoon turkey. It's not the best thing in the world but I'm proud of it. There are many elements to this model. It is my first model with several separate parts that all became meshed together as one to form the final product. I've got several screen shots of the scene setup and post modeling. Next model I will take more screen shots of the actual process of modeling. The only reason I didn't do it this time is because my modeling process (currently) is utter chaos. I mean, literally, chaos. I'm just clicking and dragging like a retard using Photoshop. It's tragic. All kidding aside, I really enjoy making models, even if they are not the best quality. So without further procrastination, here is a sneak peak... "behind the scenes" sort of picture.

     In this picture you can see all the elements I used to create the final project that you will see later. There are several different light sources to reduce shadows. Eventually I will figure out how to do that right, but for now, it looks pretty good. You can see the ground without it's terrible texture. I'm still learning to do that. I wanted to have some new effect other then the standard "plain green" ya know? I tried, ha ha. In the next picture you can see what the scene looks like through the camera used for the final render.

     This picture has everything that you will see in the final render, except for the shadows and textures. There is a way to see the textures as you are working on the scene, however, I'm not sure how to do that yet. You can also see the work area that I use in Blender. It is just the default setup with a little more space for the right side menu. The next picture is the render through the Blender view port.

     Here is the render! It was so much fun working on this project. I really enjoy the cartoon style modeling. The reason I am posting this to my game development blog is because this is the art style that I am really interested in using for my first game. Granted, the quality will be better the more I practice with silly stuff like this. Like Dimenser suggested in the comments suggestion of a previous post, the bright colors will hopefully make the game more appealing overall. I am making this game for myself. If others like it then that is fantastic! But, let's be honest here. Ultimately, at the end of the day. I made it for me. Later down the road, if I actually show some skill... I might work on making a game for the masses. So I will leave this post with one final picture. The full render of this silly little turkey that I truly enjoyed creating. I hope you like it too! As always, please leave a comment with your thoughts (love or hate, just don't be a dick!) and suggestions.

I hope everyone has a safe and wonderful Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Trial FPS working!

  I'd like to just start this out by saying...
       I got my first (piece of shit) FPS working! The character responds to mouse movements, "wads" movement, and a "fire" button. The bullets fire from the gun, however, they drop down shortly afterwards. I still need to figure that out. Not bad for an absolute beginner. Here are some screen shots, not much but progress is progress.

     This is a shot of the game from outside the players view. You can see the "cube", which is the player. The transparent triangle is the camera, your eyes in the game. You can also see the logic bricks used, though without the defining characteristics displayed as I have them closed.

     This is an in-game shot, from the camera view. Nothing special, but hey... it works! Sorry for the short entry, I'll post more later.


Sunday, November 18, 2012


     First of all I would like to thank Dimenser for his input on my last blog post. I have to agree with his comment completely. I know, I for one, get very bored with games that are too dark or too drab. The game can look super realistic, however if it's not colorful and attractive it just doesn't hold my attention. "Oh, something shiny!" So, I'd like to design my game with a cartoon feel. Not the extreme that was Borderlands, though I do absolutely love that game. More like the cartoon style of "World of Warcraft" or "Rift". Not that I'm going to copy these games. I just really enjoyed their art styles and I would like to bring that into my game.
     I think that, instead of picking a specific "style" to the game, I would like to blend a couple that I mentioned together. I feel that steam punk and Victorian are close enough anyways that it will be OK to go ahead and mesh the two. As far as game play goes, I was thinking first person styling. Similar to the Elder Scrolls series of games. Except, no where near as big of a world! OK, maybe eventually... expansions would be fun to do as I progress in my game design knowledge.
     Here is a sample of what I'm thinking for the houses in the game. This is not original content (obviously), it was pulled from Google Images as a sample for my house design.

     Here is a sample of what I had in mind for the clothing. I really like the look and feel this will add to the game.
     I cannot wait to get started on this project. What are your thoughts? If you have any ideas that you think would add to the experience I'm trying to create, please feel free to add them below!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Fun with a test game.

    Finished my first model, it looks about as good as can be expected from a novice designer. However, I was quite impressed with how the hands turned out. I wasn't sure how they would work out. While modeling the hands they were very block-y. I added a subdivision surface modifier and then added smooth shading. You can see the characters chest has a bit of a dent, still working on trying to fix that.
Close up of the hands.
     I started looking into making start menu screens. It is my first time using the camera to build around. The process is not like regular modeling where you just sculpt it and then worry about the lighting and camera positioning. When creating screens (title, pause, game over) everything needs to be lit and built around how the camera will see it. Here's my first try at it:
Not a real game, just trying out start menus.
     Today I learned of a program called Tree[D]. It is really amazing! I watched a few YouTube video tutorials on it. Tree[D] is used to create realistic looking trees for 3d modeling. You build the tree in the program and then export it as a .obj file. You have to do some tweaking once the tree is placed into Blender. All the leaves are turned into planes, however, with a few clicks you can turn those back into leaves using the textures provided by Tree[D]. I'll play around with that some time and figure out how to do it.
    My project for the next few days will be trying to model a house for my very first game asset. I'm torn between Victorian style and steam punk... I think both would be great fun. Comments, help me decide which would be best!


Friday, November 16, 2012

Starting my journey.

     This is going to serve as a journal of sorts as I progress through the world of game design. I have no prior knowledge of the field and will be attempting to learn it all throughout the process. Wish me luck! Ha! For starters I decided to gather the software I would be needing to get started. I'm going with open source because, fuck paying for software! I don't recommend stealing software, there are some very wonderful open source programs available to the public. For starters, how about a 3D modeling program complete with it's very own game engine? Blender! It is amazing! There is so much information out there on Blender. YouTube has some amazing tutorials and videos of people modeling damn near anything. These two sites have helped me out greatly: Blender Guru & CGCookie. The Blender foundation website has some great links to other tutorials as well. Now, those wonderful 3D models will be needing some textures and colors. Look no further... G.I.M.P.. Your one stop shop for all things graphical! It is basically Photoshop, without the massive price. As far as music and sound effects go, I'm looking into that but it seems that Audacity is the way to go.
   Currently, I am practicing with Blender. I found a few "orthos" images to mess with. "Orthos" images are just images with multi-views, i.e. side view and front view. I'm going to be spending most of my free time working with Blender and Gimp to learn both programs. I've got a pretty good handle on Gimp currently, though I am by no means an expert!
My first real attempt at modeling, you know... after figuring out how to navigate Blender
     I'll keep working on this some more and show you my final render eventually! Also, I'll be using this blog to post my game ideas as well as some concepts from my artists and story writers. I've got some friends looking to contribute to this project later on down the line, lucky me! Oh, I might also post some bullshit rants and raves from time to time.