Update time! If you have not read my previous blog post, perhaps it is worth checking out first before reading on to understand the work scope for Section 7, Game Asset Pack, in the Blender course I am taking. Recall that I mentioned I will be concentrating on the following assets circled in red:
Most of the assets circled in red are essential and modular meaning that they are necessary and should be able to assemble together like building blocks. This way, when exported to – say a game engine – it will allow the user to quickly construct a room or building of any size with varying levels of lighting aesthetics (i.e. – number and placement of wall torches).
Just as a reminder, I am and have been deviating away from most of the content in the course (I explained why in my previous blog post). In turn, I’m learning that using additional, external resources and tutorials and also experimenting and doing things on your own helps! And now, onto modelling the assets!
Brick Wall (Asset #1; essential + modular)
For the brick wall (very low-poly, 82 faces), I had initially used a simple plane to map and bake an image texture onto it. I then realized it would be problematic though if the wall was viewed from the side. While it likely would not be viewed from the side since a room is almost always contained entirely by its walls, this was a concern for the room entrance (see Asset #6 below). So, I added a bit more geometry simply by extruding the plane out and then re-mapping the texture. Bear in mind that I do have a high poly version of it with individually-sculpted bricks – ideally used in a rendering of a scene with up-close camera angles/shots rather than a game asset as with this low-poly version.
Cobblestone Floor (Asset #2; essential + modular/tileable)
For the cobblestone floor (relatively low-poly, 506 faces), I struggled with this particular asset the most. I had actually re-done it several times and am still thinking of re-doing it differently (I followed pananag’s tutorial for constructing tileable medieval stone floor on YT). This particular asset was tricky for two reasons: 1) individual cobblestones should look round as in the reference picture, 2) it not only needs to be modular/tileable but should also appear seamless when assembled together. For point 1), subdivision surface and/or multiresolution modifiers could easily make the cobblestone appear round, however, this greatly increases the geometry – which for the floor, should be kept low-poly. For point 2), making it tileable without the entire floor looking patterned once assembled together was impossible unless I increased the size of it, but this would make it useless to construct small rooms. Furthermore, since there are two different material types, it was difficult to make it look seamless. Anyone have thoughts/ideas to get around these two issues? I will have my ear to the ground for this – pardon the pun!
Room Entrance (Asset #10; essential + modular)
For the room entrance (relatively low-poly, 4343 faces), I started with a simple cube (lol). I scaled the cube by flattening and elongating it. I then sculpted it to resemble a wooden plank (following most of Grant Abbitt’s tutorial for sculpting wood on YT). A second wooden plank was constructed and the two pieces were duplicated and given some variation using proportional editing. All four pieces were then aligned and joined to form the doorframe. I then took the existing brick wall asset (see Asset #1 above) and removed some geometry in the middle to make a doorway. Finally, I joined the wooden doorframe with the wall. Once this high-poly version was completed, a decimate modifier was used to bring down the insanely high poly count.
Wall Torch (Asset #6; essential)
For the wall torch (low-poly, 453 faces), I started with a cone for the rigid joint. Two cylinders were used to construct the arms and just simple extrusion and beveling was done to create some of the detail. The internal Blender physics engine in cycles render was lastly used to generate a flame (following Olav3D’s tutorial for creating a quick fire animation on YT). I then added a simple material node setup (glossy BSDF, ColorRamp, and Layer Weight) to generate a chrome-like material for the torch.
Rock (Asset #3)
For the rock (low-poly, 175 faces), I started off with a metaball, which was immediately converted to a mesh so sculpting could be done on it. Once I had the general shape of the rock as pictured in the reference image, I added a decimate modifier to bring down the high poly count. Using a simple yet ingenious material node setup (following Blender Smoothie’s tutorial on making a rock using built-in textures on YT), a rather realistic look was given to the rock. I won’t show the node setup here as it is massive and you won’t be able to see any of the parameters, but have a look in the linked video if you are interested!
Crate (Asset #4)
For the crate (low-poly, 664 faces), I started off with a cube (of course…). Keeping it entirely a single mesh, I subdivided it several times – just enough to construct the outer housing. I then UV unwrapped and mapped two different textures: one for the inner planks and another for the outer housing. This was the first non-essential asset I had modelled actually (before the rock) in which I didn’t follow any tutorials so I’m pretty proud of how this one turned out. I’m equally excited to do the same with the barrel.
Alas, this is pretty much what I have so far! Here’s a quick prototype scene I put together in a few minutes. This full HD rendering (1024 samples) took approx. 20-25 minutes:
I will likely be re-doing the cobblestone floor (I think I have some ideas actually…) and continuing to model the rest of the assets (or at least have a general idea to low-detailed versions of them over the next week or so). Hope you enjoyed reading today’s blog post and I look forward to writing the next one as always!