Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

The place to ask detailed technicaly questions about the crowdsourced assets experiment, and to post and discuss WIPs if you so desire.

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Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by d-Koy » February 27th, 2013, 7:22 pm

Hello Wastelanders

Please reserve this thread for discussions pertaining to the posting of WIPs, feedback, and general advice for students participating in a special round of the W.A.S.T.E.

Feedback is open to the community at large, especially those who are in the industry looking to give a hand up. We, here at inXile, will try to jump in as often as our schedule allows.

Here students can and should receive constructive criticism and praise for work being performed as part of their course curriculum. Please be polite and professional, but honest and helpful.
We are not looking for a lot of "nice job" and "good work" comments. So please hold your applause for the end. Comments should speak to technique, composition, efficiency, style, etc.

Thank you in advance for getting involved, this promises to be a great opportunity.
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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by Gavin » February 27th, 2013, 7:31 pm

Hi all!

My name is Gavin and I am an Environment Artist here at Inxile. I look forward to providing feedback and help where needed. Feel free to PM me with any questions/comments that don't fit here. Thanks for helping us make this game. 8-)
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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by JamesMorford » February 27th, 2013, 7:37 pm

Hey everyone,

I'm James Morford, and I am also an Environment Artist here an InXile. I'm excited to work with you guys to see your work make it into Wasteland 2! I'm also available via Private Message for questions that aren't appropriate for this thread. Looking forward to seeing everyone's work! :ugeek:
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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by alikle » February 28th, 2013, 10:18 am

Heya! My name is Alisha and I am also an Environment Artist at InXile who is at your disposal for critique, advice and questions. :]
I'm pretty darn excited about getting a bunch of people involved with the creation of Wasteland 2, and I'm doubly excited about the fact that we may get to see some student work make it into a game. Feel free to shoot me a message if you have any burning questions. I can't wait to see some of the stuff that you're working on.

Thanks for contributing, guys!
-Alisha
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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by enerses » March 1st, 2013, 9:42 am

Hey, my name is Eric Nersesian and I am the professor of the class. Thank you so much for all your support in this experiment. I hope its a big success. We already have our summer class filled and ready to go for a continuation of working on Wasteland 2.

The students have just submitted their concepting project for the class and are beginning to move into the modeling phase. So they will show their progress in this forum and get some great feedback to improve the quality of their projects to increase their chances of having their assets used in game! Most students are working on a blast door as that is what my lecture videos have been focusing on.

Some are already developing their own unique asset, but in about 4 weeks everyone will complete their current project and must create a new unique asset for their final. Hopefully they will start posting up today, if not I'll start chasing after them!

Once all the lecture videos are done, I'll show them to you and maybe you can use them as a general tutorial for creating the assets. Thanks again for this opportunity!

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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by ValeriyaK » March 1st, 2013, 1:53 pm

Hello, I am a student at NJIT, taking Eric Nersesian's class. I'm an I.T. major with a specialization in Game Development. Over the course of this year, I've began to get a really big interest in 3D modeling, and quite recently, my budding other interest has been in character animation.

For a Wasteland 2 asset, I had an idea of building a ruined garage.

Image

Prof. Eric has suggested to me making a hole in the roof, so that with the camera angle of the game, the player will be able to see inside the garage and find various paint cans and small tools indicating that it was indeed once a garage. The wooden planks and the roof filling might suggest that a rogue bomb blew off a chunk in the roof, while some survivor of Wasteland has moved inside the unoccupied building and rearranged the tools.
To make it look more "liveable", I decided to add a few touches to the outside, like a couple of oil barrels, one of them suggesting that it's been turned into a make-shift doghouse, complete with a dog food bowl beside it. While the other barrel was used as a stand for a "keep away" sign.

Image

This is my concept layout, complete with a few of the textures I'll be using and the top, side, and front views of the garage with measurements. The moss, rust, and maybe a bit of smeared blood was necessary to make it look like a bomb really did blast the roof off the place and maybe even nicked a person in the process...

Image

This last image is the model I have started working on in Autodesk Maya, with basic lambert textures. Here, I've decided to stray away a little bit from my concept art, and knocked down a few paint cans, and moved the wrench outside of the garage.

The little tiny thing hanging on the wall inside, beside the paint can shelves, is a screw-driver. To keep it proportional, there's really no way I could make it bigger. So I was wondering if I should move that outside as well to let the player see it better.

Also, another question I had, is if I need to add anything to the inside portion of the garage to make it more liveable or add any more fallen roof debris to the inside?

And last question was regarding the wooden sign upfront. I was wondering if I would have to tilt it upwards even more, due to the camera, to let the player make out what it's going to say on it.


I am really looking forward to your replies and reviews. And am really excited to be working on such a project.

Thank you,
Valeriya K.

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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by alikle » March 1st, 2013, 2:32 pm

Hi Valeriya! Congrats on being our first poster. :]

First off, thanks for providing so much concept work-- it's really helpful to see your thought process. I've always heard that the best props always have a story to them, and you've done just that with your concept. A great start!

What immediately comes to mind is this-- I think something really cool you can do with your texture is to include a lot of char markings from this blast. I think that would definitely clearly communicate just what happened here.

I would use caution when considering small objects like screwdrivers. Given our camera angle, smaller objects will be difficult (or sometimes impossible) to see. Don't let this discourage you from adding details like that though. Small things like that can really give a lot of character to things.

The more chaos and debris, the better! It's the Wasteland, after all. And it seems like most folks tend to horde and stockpile anything they can find. Putting things on the -outside- of your garage is just as important, if not more, than what's inside of your garage. If you think about it, the outside is the first thing people are going to see. And you know what they say about first impressions! ;]

If you're running short of ideas for things to put inside or outside of your garage, I may have a suggestion. An idea I briefly had for some more things is this: Maybe it wasn't a rogue bomb that went off-- maybe the person who took up residence in this garage was a tinkerer, trying to build his or her own bombs... Perhaps one day they had a little bit of a mishap with their latest experiment. It might be neat to prop the garage out with all sorts of explosive materials. In the end, what props you put in is totally up to you, though. You're the artist!

As for your sign, if you want it to be read-able, you could maybe consider propping it up against the garage at an angle, as if it had been knocked down at some point in the past, and was never put back upright. Although I think what you have is fine-- it's entirely possible a sign might not be all that read-able, given the distance the camera could be from it.


Hope this helps you out a little bit! If you have more questions, feel free to keep 'em coming! I'm looking forward to seeing where you take this.

-Alisha
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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by JamesMorford » March 1st, 2013, 2:36 pm

Congrats on the first student post in the thread! :P I put my feedback/answers in red in your qouted post to help keep things from getting confusing.
ValeriyaK wrote:Hello, I am a student at NJIT, taking Eric Nersesian's class. I'm an I.T. major with a specialization in Game Development. Over the course of this year, I've began to get a really big interest in 3D modeling, and quite recently, my budding other interest has been in character animation.

For a Wasteland 2 asset, I had an idea of building a ruined garage.

Image

Prof. Eric has suggested to me making a hole in the roof, so that with the camera angle of the game, the player will be able to see inside the garage and find various paint cans and small tools indicating that it was indeed once a garage. The wooden planks and the roof filling might suggest that a rogue bomb blew off a chunk in the roof, while some survivor of Wasteland has moved inside the unoccupied building and rearranged the tools.

Fun idea - to help sell the idea that a bomb hit the roof, maybe knock a few bricks out of the back wall and put some cracks in it, it's unlikely that a bomb would only take out the roof and leave the wall completely intact.

To make it look more "liveable", I decided to add a few touches to the outside, like a couple of oil barrels, one of them suggesting that it's been turned into a make-shift doghouse, complete with a dog food bowl beside it. While the other barrel was used as a stand for a "keep away" sign.

The make-shift dog house is a cool idea, maybe have the being held in place by some planks of wood staked into the ground on both sides of it and a little bit of cloth draped over the entrance, and a oily towel or bit of cloth inside that would be some sort of dog bed.

Image

This is my concept layout, complete with a few of the textures I'll be using and the top, side, and front views of the garage with measurements. The moss, rust, and maybe a bit of smeared blood was necessary to make it look like a bomb really did blast the roof off the place and maybe even nicked a person in the process...

Image

This last image is the model I have started working on in Autodesk Maya, with basic lambert textures. Here, I've decided to stray away a little bit from my concept art, and knocked down a few paint cans, and moved the wrench outside of the garage.

Looks like a solid initial pass. Keep adding small details that help sell the structural integrity (or lack there of) in your scene, whats holding those shelves onto the wall? Model some brackets, put a hook on the wall for your screw driver. Also, remember that our camera rotates, we'll be able to see more than just what is visible in this shot, maybe put a work bench with a tool chest on it on the wall opposite of the screwdriver.

The little tiny thing hanging on the wall inside, beside the paint can shelves, is a screw-driver. To keep it proportional, there's really no way I could make it bigger. So I was wondering if I should move that outside as well to let the player see it better.

Don't worry about keeping everything in your scene 100% proportional, we exaggerate our proportions all the time with our models and textural details to help make sure the prop reads, so pump that screw driver's size up (within a reasonable degree).

Also, another question I had, is if I need to add anything to the inside portion of the garage to make it more liveable or add any more fallen roof debris to the inside?

Some fallen chunks of roof and random derbies in the corners of the room and fallen bricks from the wall as I mentioned earlier would help sell it. Consider adding other stuff to the scene such as pin-up posters or make-shift radios, try creating a story that sells itself just by looking at whats on the walls and floors of who lives in this garage.

And last question was regarding the wooden sign upfront. I was wondering if I would have to tilt it upwards even more, due to the camera, to let the player make out what it's going to say on it.

Our camera can rotate and come down pretty far in, the signs current angle looks appropriate to me, but that's just my personal opinion. I might make the sign a little thinner though, it looks a little too thick to be a plank of wood.

I am really looking forward to your replies and reviews. And am really excited to be working on such a project.

Thank you,
Valeriya K.


Overall I like your idea and concept, it has potential for a lot of character and to be an interesting prop. Keep it up!
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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by Mshulman » March 1st, 2013, 4:36 pm

Hi, I'm Mike Shulman and here is what I've been working on.
I started out making some [bad ass] rocks and then I moved to other random environment objects.
Image
Image
Eventually, I came up with the idea to put them all together in the corner of a blown up house.
Image


I am always interested in feedback, so let me know what you think.

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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by JamesMorford » March 1st, 2013, 5:13 pm

Hi Mshulman! Welcome to the forums. You have a nice start here on your meshes and concepts.

My first advice would be to work on some material definition, right now the cracks on your table mesh are confusing me material wise, it looks like it would be shattered glass, but if a glass table had sustained that kind of damage, it surely would have shattered in to many smaller pieces. Look into breaking a few pieces of the geometry off to make it look more like shattered glass.

Your brick wall looks like it has a nice start on it, but the spikey triangluar detail you're using doesn't represent the kind of degradation a brick wall would realistically have. Bricks typically chip off in small pieces and erode away, so consider having the mesh chip inwards instead of outwards, more subtly, and rely more on your texture to simulate damage rather than your geometry.

The mirrors read as what they are trying to represent, but consider having some grunge on the glass, it would probably be very grimy after 100 years in the wasteland. Also, in the areas inside the large cracked area in the middle of your glass, consider showing the material behind the glass to simulate a chunk of glass breaking away from the mirror. And to enhance re-usability in a scene, change up the crack texture on one of them mirrors so it doesn't look identical to the other crack.

Your bottle is a good start, keep it up! Continue to develop your rocks, concentrate on the silhouette of the rock and make it read well from a distance.

Good luck with the rest of your project, keep posting!
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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by robertf » March 1st, 2013, 6:41 pm

Hello everyone, my name is Robert Folgar and I am a student at NJIT, majoring in IT with a specialization in game design. I began modeling about a year and a half ago and loved it. This year I am really focused on learning all the techniques for modeling so that one day I could make a career out of it.

For a Wasteland 2 asset, I decided to create a tanker car from the first batch you released.

Image
Image

Here is my concept art and the main tanker. For my concept at I decided to make the frame all rusted out, like its been sitting out in the elements for a while and with the tanker paint, I will have it rusted and chipping. The modeled out tanker car has a tri count of 4072.

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With my main taker complete I moved on to making the shelter for the people. For the shelter on top I am going to use a 40' shipping container and am planing to use the tanker as addition shelter. I was also thinking about using the tanker as a bunker/fort but I was not sure if the people have the ability to cut a hole through the tank.
This model has 5452 tri's.

I am looking forward to hearing your replies and suggestions, and am excited about joining the Wasteland community.

Thanks,
Robert Folgar

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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by jc429 » March 2nd, 2013, 10:57 pm

Hello everyone, my name is John and I am also a student at NJIT. I am interested in 3D modeling as a hobby, and possibly as a career, and obviously I want to improve my skills to help accomplish that. With that said, here's what I have so far:
Image
The blotchy thing on the side of the train car is supposed to be a scratched out company logo, and as you can see it doesn't really look like one. I would appreciate any feedback on how to make it look better or, if there is a fictional company featured in the Wasteland universe I could use, I could use that instead.

Modeling-wise, I don't have much completed,except for this:
Image
I'm aware of and have already fixed that gap in the ladder. My main concern with this is that, in an attempt to not go over the polycount limit, I might be using too few polygons and making the model look uglier than it needs to be. I've never had to pay attention to the number of polygons I used before, so I'm not sure if I should start with a low detail model and add detail once I finish the general shape, or start high detail model and reduce detail once I'm finished.

Any feedback is appreciated, and thanks for this great learning opportunity.

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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by Vasilios » March 3rd, 2013, 1:16 pm

Hi my name is Vasilios Syndetos and I'm at NJIT majoring in IT with a specialization in Game Development. I use to be a architecture major but switched because I didn't like the way the program was run. But I like 3D modeling and making blueprints and that's why I'm in Eric Nersesian's 3D modeling class so I can learn more before I graduate this semester. For the Wasteland 2 project I'm doing a blast door as I want to learn more about making uving and texturing as those aren't my strong areas and I figured the door would be the best of the assets for me to learn.

The idea for the blast door was to have it look like it had some age to it with the rust and that people have tried to break in with the blast mark and the blood stains. The idea for the blood stain is the someone's arm and leg got caught and it basically cut them off
Image

For the opening of the blast door was to have the left and right door open first and then the top and bottom. I'm not sure how good that'll be and I'm open to suggestions
ImageImage
Last edited by Vasilios on March 3rd, 2013, 4:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by salt1219 » March 3rd, 2013, 2:28 pm

@ vasilios

your last two images wont load, could you reload them?
as for your blast door i like what you have so far, the colors are a bit bright for a old door that would have years or dirt and neglect. maybe fade them, and darken the door as a whole.
Mostly harmless.

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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by enerses » March 4th, 2013, 6:31 am

Right, so we figured out that the students cannot provide links of their wip images from our class website. It requires a login to access these files so they are not viewable on outside sources. I informed my students to post their image files on imgur.com and provide that link when posting in this forum. Thanks for the catch on that one!

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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by Gavin » March 4th, 2013, 10:13 am

Wow great job so far everyone!

Laying out the ground work and concepting first will go a long way. I am liking the stories and character that you are infusing into the assets. Blocking out those assets in the beginning and then moving smaller and smaller will create the best overall quality.

Here are some pointers based off what I have seen so far.

-Dont get nailed down! While its awesome to have a concept before beginning a asset, follow your gut once you get into Maya/Max. You will find that the proportions you planned for may not "feel" right. Just duplicate a copy and try something new. When the asset reflects what you feel is correct then you know you are going in the right direction.

-Edge wear and definition. Unless a asset is suppose to resemble a brand new item it should have extra definition on the edges. Getting your asset to "read" and have "legibility" from our game camera requires exaggerated contrast and proportion. Examples include, rust on the edges of metal, peeling paint, chips on the edge of stone etc. A good test of this is to do a quick render of the asset from a significant height and squint to see if it "reads" as intended. Examples include, rust on the edges of metal, peeling paint, chips on the edge of stone etc.

-Wireframes are nice! Posting wireframes now could save you a lot of headaches down the road.

Good work everyone. I look forward to seeing where these go and eventually using them in game.
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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by alikle » March 4th, 2013, 11:31 am

Hey guys! It was great to check out the thread this morning and see so much new stuff. :]

I wanted to write a post that I thought could be good general advice for everyone, even those who have yet to post, while addressing some of the specific questions from those of you that have.
What I want to talk about is textures. And in the post preceding mine, Gavin gave some great advice about edge definition and detail, which is really a good place to start when you're wondering about what details you can add to the textures for your model.
As strange as it sounds, it's important to think about what your prop has gone through, and what kinds of environments it has weathered. Is it exposed to grime, dripping water, exhaust, or corrosive materials? How old is it? How well has it been maintained? And so on.
Things like special scenarios often come into play with props, and it's good to think about all of the factors that go into them.
For example, I'd like to use Vasilios Syndetos' model of the blast door. He's cleverly decided to put some blood on the door as evidence of someone losing some limbs at some point. That's a great idea, and stories like that can really add a tremendous amount of character to a prop, and even an entire scene. It really makes for a great way to stray from looking too plain or generic.
I would like to point out, though, that the blood on the door is in a splatter shape. Getting a bit gruesome for a moment, if you think a bit about what happens to limbs when they're severed, it's not likely to be a clean ordeal. Blood also obeys the laws of physics, and if there's enough of it, it's going to drip down the side of the door. Valisios, I'd recommend adding some dripping blood to your texture just to make it a bit more realistic. In addition, some evidence of a struggle might be cool to see-- scratched paint, or even chips or dents. Some general wear and tear on the edges of the door from opening and closing over the years would also be very cool too!

The more attention to details like those you can fit into a texture, the more real it will feel. That's not to say you it's not possible to go over the top with details, though. I think one of the best pieces of advice I could give to someone starting out with modeling, texturing, and really art in general is to use photo reference. I've heard some people say that using reference seems like cheating, but really that's kind of a ridiculous statement. Reference helps keep you true to life, and there's a lot you can learn from even just one picture. :]

I'd like to use someone as another example. John modeled a train car, and in his texture, he want's to include a scratched away company logo on the side. Fantastic idea, and a good start. My advice to you, John, is to look up some reference-- google image search works just fine-- and do different searches for worn out logos. Searching for old traincars may help too, as they sometimes have worn out logos on them, too. Once you've done this, I'd recommend starting with a clean, unabused logo, and rough it up yourself. Erase, smudge, and generally obliterate parts of it until you're satisfied with the look. Reference will definitely show you the right way to do something, and in many cases, it can always provide a little bit of extra inspiration, or just some good ideas to include in your work. :]

So we're thinking of unique things to put in our texture, and using reference to make sure we can get it looking right... What else can we do? Well, the answer is quite a lot, actually. But a good place to start is to think of the form, shape, and physical texture of the object you're texturing. And to get these things to work, a little exaggeration is absolutely the key.
I think I'll use Robert Folgar and Mike Shulman's works for my examples here. These guys are off to a good start, but what their work could use most is a more solid feeling to their forms. If you look at objects in real life, it's going to have some shadowed areas, as well as some light parts, or highlights. Even though most of the lighting information you see on a model is due to the lighting in your actual scene, you shouldn't be discouraged from adding some in your texture. There are a couple of ways this can be achieved.
You can bake out some ambient occlusion for your model in your 3D modeling program. You can apply the AO texture to your diffuse texture in photoshop by setting it as a "Multiply" layer, and adjusting the opacity.
If you'd rather do it by hand (and sometimes you should do this in addition to the AO bake), you can paint your highlights and shadows on objects into your texture. This is where a lot of critical thinking, and yes, reference, comes in handy. Understanding how light effects 3D forms can seem tricky, and maybe even daunting at first, but it's absolutely critical in professional-grade work.

This is a bit more difficult to explain in a general way, but if anyone is interested in more details on how to do this, or any techniques, absolutely ask! I'll be happy to explain what I can. And if you need any clarification, or just more information on anything I've attempted to explain, please don't hesitate to ask for it. :] I think some back-and-forth would be a lot more interesting than me yammering on as I have. At any rate, I hope this information can be useful to you all. You guys are off to a good start, and I'm definitely looking forward to seeing how you progress! Keep it up.
~Alisha
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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by salt1219 » March 4th, 2013, 3:20 pm

@ vasilios

thank you for re-posting your images, the door looks great btw.
i was just thinking about how your door opens, and thought that each segment must have some sort of guide track.
maybe you could have some rusty scrapes from the door opening and closing.

i would imagine that there would be extra wear, anywhere metal is rubbing on metal. so maybe some vertical rust lines on the top and bottom pieces and some horizontal on the left and right. who ever made the door probably had it run on two tracks per segment and each track would be symmetrical.

some rub marks may have only chipped the paint, that might look great on the caution stripes
Mostly harmless.

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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by DLaw90 » March 5th, 2013, 3:36 pm

Here is my concept artwork and Proj 1. It is not very good (and very late) :( but I hope to do better :D

P.S. these face icons are neat

Image

Image

Image

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Re: Undergrad Modelling Feedback Thread

Post by amansour » March 5th, 2013, 4:12 pm

here is my concept artwork for my blast door and my book case. Open to any and all feed back. I will start actively posting through modeling and texturing phases.

Image
Image

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