Ambient NPC Population

Ambient NPC Population, a continuation of an idea ...


A Free CryENGINE SDK for everyone in August 2011? ...

Adventures In Textures

Seeing just how low you can go with the poly count by offsetting a lack of geometry with normal mapping and hand painted textures ...

UDK - Hawken

Indie development at its best ...

Unreal Engine 3 - Environments Features Overview

Gorgeous tech demo trailer showcasing the features of Unreal Engine 3 and its free counterpart, the Unreal Development Kit ...

Thursday, 24 February 2011

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - Official Trailer

"We're pleased to share the first ever in-game trailer for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, the next installment in The Elder Scrolls series from award-winning creators of The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and Fallout 3, Bethesda Game Studios. "

You might find you need to log into Youtube to view the trailer for age verification.

It seems Skyrim will be released world-wide on 11.11.11 on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC ... so something to look forward to at the end of the year other than the cold weather. If they release another instalment of Fallout at the same time ... then hibernation this coming winter will just not be an option

Thursday, 10 February 2011

I'll Take What's Behind Door Number 3

Time is proving to be a most scarce commodity at the moment. So having a few hours spare I set myself some tasks and as usual did something completely different :rolleyes: I started work on a room and ended up on a new 90 degree section, corridor doorway section (with separate reusable door frame / doors and simple placeholder keypad switch box all to need textures), a few WIP scripts for the doors and some hashed together sound FX for them to and a short corridor "Door Plug" section to allow the standard sections to fit the door frame. Part of the plan for this modular approach to the level is that as many sections/parts as possible will be able to "plug" into each other. I also wanted to test out some new base metal textures to try and break up the "monotone" look. The door keypad switch would also require some sort of 3rd person object interaction functionality which was hastily coded and again as with everything else, still very much a WIP.

Simple keypad switch prop:

Development in Silo PRO:

A quick medium resolution video to show the "worksite" test scene. I can't take credit for the blue and yellow textures they are curtesy of Paint.NET's floodfill tool..

Hopefully next week I will be able to free up more than only a few hours to get fully back into this "adventure", but I was not unhappy with the progress I made in only two hours.

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Scale to the chief

With the basic texture workflow pretty much sorted for the modular level design (see here), I have turned my attention to getting a scale I am happy with. When this is done then after each section is modelled and then UV mapped it should be just a simple case of converting to .gmf format (famous last words). Scaling seems to be an issue that crops up across all the engines I use. But truthfully it matters not what others scale to, but that the relative scaling used in a scene is consistent for all static and animated meshes from props to scene to characters. LE has a scale of 1 unit is about 1m, I simply use 1 unit as 1m, therefore a character needing to be 6 foot tall would simply be a "metric" 6 foot.. or 1.8 units. This is the rule of thumb I use for all scenes and corresponding code. But sometimes its also good to check how it looks by eye. In a 3rd person situation its not just the scale of the level and the characters but having to remember the camera offset and how this would be effected. I normally do two tests, a simple static scene with characters and props placed to get a simple overall picture of the scaling.

And I like to knock up a quick app with a basic 3rd person collision cam and have a quick walk through (HD available):

So far I am happy with the results which means when time permits I can get on with creating the rest of the sections/rooms ect. I have also checked the scaling to make sure I can easily "block out" the level and run it through my pathfinding mapdata generator app which I had some success with in earlier tests of A* pathfinding (see here).


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