This week in map stuff

Hi everyone!, over the past week i have spent most of my time doing minor changes to the map, most of these being changing the length of lanes and other such things to allow for the implementation of assets into the level, as well as this i have begun creation of textures and unwrapping models for texturing, with my textures they’re mostly just basic colors and shapes with some added noise to make them more visually interesting, then when i am happy with the base texture i create a normal map using an Nvidia plugin that can generate a normal map and then i edit this partially to get the desired effect.

Below is an example of the textures i have so far created along with their normal maps and specular maps, the normals maps are used to give the effect of 3D and the specular maps are used for the engine to figure out how to properly light the texture, Their is also an option within Unreals material editor to let me create a specular just using the blueprinting system, for this project i have tried a combination of both to try and get some cool looking lighting out of the textures.

TextureSheetAfter i have create the textures,normals and sometimes speculars i then take it into UE4 and begin creation of the material, depending on what i want this can be either a very straightforward process of a bit of a tricky one, For instance the below gif is a material that i have created entirely within UE4, none of this has been animated within another program.

MaterialEffect

In order to create this effect i had to create several different nodes, within the emissive area which gives it a glow effect when rendered in game i also have a cloud texture that i quickly made in Photoshop using the cloud filter which i am overlaying on top of the colors and then panning to the left.

Within the pulse section of the material i have set it up to occasionally make the material glow slightly brighter than what it is default set to by the emissive, Above this is the specular map input which also contains two variable which are plugged into roughness and metallic which further help to make it feel like a real object in the scene.

Above that their is also the default material that is overlayed on top of everything else and then also the normal map which is used to give it the pretend effect of 3D lighting.

MatExampleSo other than all that stuff which i have greatly enjoyed doing i have also been slowly optimizing and unwrapping my 3d models that are already in the scene to be ready for when i texture them.

Hope you’ve enjoyed reading and tata!.

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Hi everyone here is another update on how the map is going, currently I have created multiple assets to populate the scene with, the major parts being Huge pipes which i guess would be used to transport sewage,water or house electrical cables for connection between the higher and lower part of the city, Below is a gif of a brief fly over.

MapFlyOver

Mostly i have been working on trying to make sure the pipes phase in and out from top to bottom using either fog or at the top of the level a massive block, which is meant to represent part of the unfinished city, Originally i was going to use a volumetric fog to cut off both the top and bottom, however currently their is no such tool in UE4 to allow me to do this eventually i will try and create a fog particle effect to try and block out the upper sections.

I also had help from one of the lecturers who helped me improve some of my already completed assets and i plan on creating some basic textures for the level so that we have something more tangible to show off for a presentation that is coming up soon on the project.

As well as all this both myself and another class mate have begun designing what the HUD will look like, below you can see the most current design for the HUD, it has to show all three placeable towers, the players crossbow as well as a wave counter and a bolt counter for the player, We decided to position it at the top center of the screen instead of the bottom as having the HUD and the crossbow in the same section of screen space would be to confusing for some players.

HUD

Aside from all that i haven’t been doing much else, i look forward to mocking up some textures for the level and seeing how that goes as i always enjoy creating assets, anyway hope you’ve all enjoyed the read and ill see you next time.

Moving along

Today i’m going to update you on my progress about how the map is going, for one thing I’ve been working on more models and if you look below you’ll see some of them with captions so they actually make sense, I’ve also been trying to figure out how to add rain to my map, it’s more difficult than it sound’s but i think i’m nearly there with it, and last but not least i’ll show you some of the textures I’m using and show you some normal maps.

 

The the air vent to the left you can see it is fully textured but some of it has stretched i’m going to go back and fix this if i have time but most people probably wont even notice, and for the wall panel to the right i have not started texturing but will be doing them shortly it’s going to be scattered around the map to make things feel busy.

For those of you who don’t know what a normal map is it’s pretty much a way of making a low poly model look amazing, what it does is add a sort of 3d effect on the 2d texture by raising certain colors within the files RGB (red,green and blue Example below) basically it goes and applies the RGB to the x,y and z coordinates of the map to give it that 3d effect, pretty cool yeah.

  

This example is of a texture not a 3d model but it gives it the feeling of 3d doesn’t it? what this does is make it use up less processing space than  actually covering the floor of the map with real models as that would be very intensive to the player’s computer and slow them down far to much to enjoy themselves.

Completed model

Ok so I’ve completed my first model, i think it turned out okay, the first image is the completed model and the second image is the texture i used to cover the model with, if you’re wondering why the texture looks so damn funny it’s because when you complete the model Maya allows you to unwrap it  into a bunch of separate flat pieces on a grid you can then export this mesh to an image and open it up in Photoshop.

The two blue pieces of metal at the bottom of the image are the top and bottom of the cylinder and the hazard line is the skirt at the bottom, if you’re wondering how i made this model i’ll tell you, what i did was get a bunch of free texture files from http://cgtextures.com/ (it’s a great website) then i chucked them into the Photoshop file which contained the wire mesh for my model and i placed the bits and pieces i needed where i wanted them, some of them are overlaying rust images with transparency on, The blue metal was originally a more silver color but i messed around with it’s hue/saturation and curve to give it a more blue look,  i’m not the best at photoshop but i think it came out very well.

Hope you all enjoyed this, Finn