Evaluation

Posted: April 24, 2012 in Uncategorized

Overall I am really happy with the work I have produced during this project. Hopefully I have fulfilled all the criteria’s for the brief, I Believe my map has stuck with the science fiction theme.

Overall I was really happy with the map I created during this project, I believe that I followed the science fiction brief very well and manage to create a nice science fiction based map and atmosphere using the tools provided in the Unreal engine. The things that I liked about my map is the overall design and areas to travel through, such as dividing my map up into three different areas, the middle area which was very large and enforced open combat where fire fights can break out little cover. As well as the other sides of the map where close quarters combat happens such as the alley ways and buildings, or maybe the walkways where you can gain a height advantage and use cover to help you avoid bullets from the enemy. As well as this I also liked the models I used from the content browser in my map, using Unreal I managed to find a lot of science fiction based models to use in the map, thus following the brief very well and being able to achieve this relatively easy. Another feature which I liked about my map was the use of the jump pad, using the jump pad is extremely sci fi, it’s just like in other science fiction games and films where the characters are able to jump from one thing to the other with the aid of things like jump pads. Lastly I also liked the textures I used for my map, I believe they really helped out in capturing a science fiction atmosphere and mood, without the textures I don’t think the map would have the same mood or atmosphere. Even though I enjoyed a lot of things about my map, there are also things I would have liked to change if I had the chance to again. One of these is the objects used in the buildings, the objects I used in the buildings were used several times, I believe that if I had a better understanding of using Maya I should have maybe created my own models in that software, textured them and implement them in my map, this would have made the buildings seem less identical and would have looked much better for the map. Another thing which I would have liked to change about this map is also making the buildings more varied, such as implementing more floors in the buildings, or possible using better textures on the buildings to try and them even more science fiction based. Looking back on the buildings I wish I had found a better texture for them, maybe something with more metal on or something else, I’m not really sure however if I had the chance I would change them without a doubt. Along with this I would also like to implement more features like the jump pad, maybe if I had a designated door way in the map with a large area I would have liked to create a door which opens automatically, or maybe a lift to transport you to the top of the building and give the player a height advantage.

Obviously many things could be changed within the map however in the end I was pleased with the result. It was a nice experience making the map and I learned a few things here and there using the engine, something which will come in handy in the future if we ever use engines again. As stated before overall I am happy with the progress I made and personally I believe I followed the science fiction theme well.

My Awesome Map

Posted: April 15, 2012 in Uncategorized

This section will be solely dedicated to the creation and progression of my map as I build it. I will also go back and relate to brief to try and display how my map meets the criteria’s needed to pass this project. To show my progression I will post Screenshots at various stages of development.

I started off by first creating a floor to work on. This area will be the open section in the middle. This will have doorways and paths leading off to different sections of the map.

Here I have applied a texture to the floor and have added a tile static mesh to the floor to make it pop out more and make it look more 3D. Static meshes are basically 3D models that have been created or the UDK engines. This models have been created by the developers of the software and are not my own.

Here is my map after I've added few Static meshes to it. I have added these so there are obstacles and structures that players can hide behind and use for cover. It also takes up space so it isn't as open and boring.

Here I have added in two corridors on the side of the centre arena bit. These corridors will give the players alternate routes to different places on the map. This will hopefully give the players a lot of flanking’s routes, creating some good gameplay.

Before

After

Here I have added a separate section to my map. This is the design which I posted in a previous post, I have called this death alley. As you can see it is simple just a long corridor here is a before and after shot. When I constructed this section I encountered a problem, players would be able to jump of over the edge into the abyss from the bridge, to overcome this I simple added in a chain-link fence to prevent the falling hazard. I added a few static meshes to my bridge to make it look more attractive and less plain as it was without them, I simple just added a network of pips along the side. I also decided to change the look of the wall and add in a few static meshes to make the section look better and a little narrower. I’m hoping the narrowness will provide the players with end to end fire fights creating a constant battle area.

Here is the best view to see the decal I have added to the walls and the bridge. I also added a different texture to the pipe ring so it has a blue ring around it. I think, although this is simple it adds to the Sci-fi feel.

When I was perusing through the static meshes in UDK I found this ring like model and though I would put it into my map, when I did it defaulted to this huge giant ring. I was going to delete it but I thought this would add immensely to the Sci-fi theme. It resembles the Ring in the Game Halo, and seeing that the Halo franchise was one of the games that influenced me most I thought I would keep it in as it will add to the theme I'm trying to portray through this map.

I then started construction of a building. In UDK it’s slightly trickier to create buildings, than in Cryengine. But I watched a few tutorials and got the gist of it pretty quickly I simple built the four walls by using the “add mass tool” and the added in the roof and the floor, I then had to use a “cut mass tool” to cut away at the mass to create doors windows and stair ways. I the just added the final details like the texture, decal and aesthetics. Here is the finished product after I had finished all these.

Here is a screenshot of the roof. as you can see here I have also added in a fence to prevent players from exiting the map, and I have also added static meshes to make the roof look more attractive and less open and boring.

Here is a screenshot of the interior of my building. This screenshot shows the second floor. Its pretty basic and simple but I think the interior overall is pretty good.

Here is another screenshot of the interior of my building. This one shows the bottom floor

After this I added in a wall around the map to keep all the players contained. I then added some more lights and a few more static meshes to fill in open space. Once I had done this I had finished my map, I rebuilt all the lighting and geometry and the saved it. Over all I’m happy with my map, I know its took me longer than it should have but its came together really nicely.

As you can see from the screenshot I have provided my map has progressed very nicely, although it has taken me  longer than I expected, I think the work I have done has met most of the briefs criteria and has kept to the theme of Sci-fi.If i was to change anything I would probably make my map slightly larger and maybe change the background so it looks more Sci-fi.

Engine Choice

Posted: March 23, 2012 in Uncategorized

After playing around with all three of the engines I finally decided to go with the Unreal engine. Unreal and Cryengine are simply supreme to Source in every way so I didn’t really consider it. It ended up being between Unreal and Cryengine. They both had very good aspects, which I have already covered in a previous post. The two aspects that attracted me most were: Unreal had loads of cool packages already loaded up into the software and Crengine was easy to use and had a better texturing tool. But after failing to access Cryengine I ended up going with UDK (Unreal) and I think this was a wise choice. Unreal just has a better feel to it although harder to use, assistance from YouTube tutorials and my peers, I found this obstacle easy to overcome. In addition UDK’s packages proved very helpful. The majority of the materials and static meshes in the engine had a very Sci-fi feel to them so this could help me reach the demands of the brief. In my opinion UDK is over all the best option for the task I am going to take on.

Yellow Week

Posted: March 19, 2012 in Uncategorized

For this week I was going to start my creating my map in one of the engines, but due to a change in timetable I would have to attend “Yellow Week” , a compulsory week were we would visit a side project which is relevant to our course. Because of this I would have to concentrate on the work  that was assigned to me. During “Yellow Week” we got to have a break from our usual work and get to do something else. We were first briefed on what we would be doing over the next couple of days. We were told we had to produce a final concept piece of a Pokémon character, and submit a detailed report on Concept art.

On the First day we were told to produce a variety of design for our Pokémon character. I had 2 designs that I liked in particular, one was a Pokémon based on a hedgehog and the other on a Griffin. I ended up going with the Griffin design, it was a fairly big creature which was a flying and fire type Pokémon. After the first day we had a 3 day rest which was mostly me working on my report about Concept art, the report took a while to produce and was very difficult, but I finally produced what I thought to be a very good Report on Concept Art. I commented on all the aspects the Brief had outlined, some points were better than others but overall I think it was a success. On the second and final day of “Yellow Week” we started creating our final Concept piece in Photoshop, it took me a while to draw the actual character, and because of this I didn’t have time to add any highlights or lowlights but I did add solid colour.

Here is my final Concept Piece which I created in Photoshop. Overall I think this picture is really good, although it doesn’t have highlights or lowlights I think it’s one of my best art pieces, which I have created using Photoshop.

Map Designs

Posted: February 27, 2012 in Uncategorized

At first I really struggled to come up with a map structure that I liked, the designs I did do were to simple and very boring. They lacked in finesse, they were very linear, one leveled with only few alternate routes they were simple crap. I started to get a little frustrated, so instead of drawing a whole map I though I would design a few sections and aesthetics for my map, and then with the design I liked I would stitch them together to make a whole map.

Here is one of the sections I designed for my map. This section here, is simple a very long and narrow corridor I’m hoping this layout will create constant fire fights from end to end, I’m hoping this will provide players with exciting battles, but to prevent it from becoming tedious. I have added in alternate paths and multiple flanking routes. Hopefully this will be a deterrent against  possible campers with sniper rifles. these routes will also allow the players to continuously push against there opponents. I’m hoping this factor will be very appealing  to the smarter players that like to get behind there enemies and rack up kills. I have also added in a cat walk over looking the corridor I’m hoping this will create the same kind of battles as the corridor from end to end but it can also be used as a flanking route, I might also add in a bridge which will go from the catwalk to the opposite side to the map, this bridge will most likely lead to a structure, most likely a building. In this design I have added a few aesthetics such as the destroyed vehicle and the shield emitters to give this section more of a sci-fi feel. When I create this map I will texture the walls and floor with a metallic paneling i will also have some lighting to give the section a dark feel, but I’m hoping this will add to the sci-fi theme.

Here is another section I designed. This is a very small area but it is composed of 2 floors. This section is really symmetrical, meaning it is identical on both sides. There is a stair case which lead down from a balcony. there a two passage ways one on the balcony and one directly beneath it. This area is very compact and very small, making it suitable for close quarter battles. The multiple paths, routes and the addition of a balcony make this section very open, if a player walked through this bit they could get shot from multiple directions, making it very dangerous, hence why its called “Suicide Staircase”. This section will most likely be used to connect two buildings together, or it could lead to the bridge I mentioned earlier. This will also be texture similar to  “Death Alley” ,but if I have passages I will add in a lighting such as blue neon strips, this will help give the area a sci-fi feel.

After this I started to get cracking on creating a map so I first made a rough sketch, then produced a tidier more detailed version which you can see above. This map is very angular but I might change it so the shape is more unique and curved. I will probably also make the map slightly larger or longer, I will also add more levels to this map to make it less linear.

Here are two designs I had refined on Photoshop. I have labelled certain sections, to identify what they are. I have also added a second floor to my design to give my map more depth, and to make it more interesting. I will create a bridge that will lead from the catwalk to the main building, as you can see above. But I don’t want to make this bridge to open so I’ll most likely add a wall running along it so players have something to hide behind when under fire. I will try and keep to this design as best as I can, but I will most likely tweak it to make it better.

Aesthetics

Posted: February 27, 2012 in Uncategorized

Our first week was purely comprived of research and design. For my reasearch I simple went on to google and typed in the names of varies sci-fi films, games and programmes that I like such as Star  wars, Stargate, Mass Effect etc. Here are some images i found that have very appealing qualities which i may use in my own map design.

 

I found these image on the internet when I was doing my research. I really like that it is long narrow, I think this would funnel players into this section making for some hectic battles, the area in this picture though is a little to open, if add this into my map I think I will make it slightly wider and add in a few obstacles for cover.

 

This corridoor has the same problem as the picture before, but i like its unique shape and the colours that have been used, i also like the lighting effects in this image.

 

Here is another image of a long corridor, i choose this one specifically because it has a small outcove which could be used for cover when fighting.

I like this staircase; I think it would provide players with a hotspot for battles. If I add this feature to my map I would change it slightly making it wider with columns for cover I hope it will have a similar affect to the stair way in Metro from BF3.

Mood Board

Posted: February 27, 2012 in Uncategorized

 I have created two mood boards. These boards basically display the style and mood I am going to try and portray in my game level. I have chosen images that give off a sci-fi feel, I selected pictures from varies games and films that I like and have influenced my design.

 This mood board is composed of a lot of dark images that contain a wide variety of dark blues. I chose these images because I want my map to be a very dark and ominous place, I’m hoping this will create a very tense atmosphere, making the players be very wary when moving through dark rooms and goin near dark corners.

 This mood board is comprised of a lot of images with deep oranges and yellows. Most of the images on this mood board give a really emphasis to the sun, giving the image a warm feel, this contrast with some of the images as some are also very dark and gloomy, even though there is a lot of colour.