View Full Version : WIP Environment Cold Storage

12 December 2003, 07:37 PM
It occurs to me that I should be WIPing stuff as I start it, rather than once I'm finished. Unfortunately, it occurs a little late. (-: This is still very definately in progress.
The entire scene is about 2600 polygons, 14 512x512, 1 512x256, and 1 512x16 texture.

12 December 2003, 08:26 PM
What do you need all those splittings in the wall and floor for??
Sorry to say that but the whole scene looks pretty empty keeping in mind that you used 2600 polys.

But Iike the style!

12 December 2003, 11:04 PM
It looks really nice, are you gonna try and light the scene to give it a "mood?" That might make it more dynamic.

Did you split the walls up so you could swap different repeatable textures in and out on different areas of the wall?

I'm just starting a room design for a test and am trying to work out how to layout the different textures. Can you explain a little how you created your textures for the room? I'm interested if you made just a bunch of repeatable textures or a mix of some repeatable and some objects that are mapped seperately? Any info would help a lot, thanks.

12 December 2003, 11:43 PM
looks good considering the low polycount on items, but your textures definitley need work.

Dieblien's question reminded me of one i had a while ago about a since scrapped game level. It had no verts on the walls or floors aside from the corners of the walls and doors/windows. it was great because it was low poly, but lighting absolutley sucked. if the same brightness wasn't on all 4 verts, it looked horrible. do they split up walls and floors in professional game levels for lighting, or do they just fake it with textures? anyone know?

12 December 2003, 07:03 AM
Dieblein--The walls/floor are split up to give me more texture space

Eric--Thanks, lighting will happen eventually. Trying to figure out if I'm going to paint verts, do bizarre things with textures, or be lazy and assume it's in an engie that can manage shadow maps. (-:
As far as the textures go, I'm more of a character/prop person, so most of the textures are basically custom-made for the surface. Which tends to lead to odd looking maps when they're done, and incredibly inefficient use of textures in general. The Tubes have 2 512's on them (down from my original 5 1024's--ugh). The desk has 1 512 (yup, planned that one a bit better d-X). The floor is usong 3 different maps--one for the corners, one for the edges, and one for the center. Planning on doing the same thing for the roof. The hoses all have one aweful 512x16 texture that's in the process of finding it's way onto empty space on one of the wall maps. Which leads me to the walls. I was good with the bottom section (the bit with the lockers) That's all one 512, including the section that I haven't yet touched in the corners. I'm being really bad for the top sections of the wall, though. That's currently 6 separate maps. I'm trying to decide if I can compromise my mental picture to save on textures. (-:

Drei--Everything above the lockers is still in progress, and any advice you can give me on texture will be very appreciated.
With lighting, there are a bunch of different ways to do it. You can cut the surface up (essentially drawing shadows into the surface) and color the verticies, you can create separate geometry (I hear this, along with a special shader, is what was done in MGS2), you can add it directly to the texture, you can bake the lighting in via an editor (like in Unreal or Quake), and if you're really lucky, you get to work on a brand-new engine with full real-time lighting with shadow volumes. (-:

12 December 2003, 07:17 AM
tahl- reference, reference, reference.

-> the computers in the background (assuming that's what they are..) look like panels with weird swirling lines on them. Find pictures of labratory computers, render farms, servers, anything that matches the look you're trying to go for there and copy it to the best of your ability. if its a new concept, take elements for these pictures and use them to make your creation

->the machinery behing the glass looks appears to be flat color and looks like you took basic shapes and slapped them together.. .and depth to it, view it from an angle... have steam coming out of it somewhere...

->the glass... it looks like you took a brush with 20% opacity and ran it diagonally across a new layer. again, find reference photos for glass and how it reflects. for something like that, i think the 2D Light tool in photoshop would be very useful (under filter -> render, i believe).

->the cracks between the tile on the wall don't look like cracks between tile at all. find pictures of ceramic tile and grout.

another thing is, if you're using a 512 texture, paint it at 1024... add all that extra detail, and then shrink it down to a 512. you'll see hints of detail you wouldn't have a chance of being able to paint on a 512, and it really adds to it... try to fake as much ligthing as you can.

12 December 2003, 11:56 AM
the caps of a cylinder should not end up in a tri-fan. you should cut the polygons horisontally from vertice to vertice to get better tri-stripping. tri-fans are never good. only use them if absolutely necessary.

EDIT: also, if you have any, intersecting mesh have to be removed too. if not, your engine has to calculate the intersecting polygons anyway. if the mesh is not intersecting but just "floating" very close the floor for example, you get more objects to calculate in the rendering. so the best thing is to "melt" everything into one mesh.

12 December 2003, 12:19 PM
Well I´m sure I never heared this hint when I´ve been at HL mapping..
But I never mapped for any non-quake based engine. So you´re probably right.
Sorry :-)

But still I think you´re using the polygons in the wrong place. Why didn´t you use a block under the chambers? Who looks beneath them? All the details in the level are from the players perspective beneath him.

12 December 2003, 12:25 PM
Originally posted by Dieblein
Well I´m sure I never heared this hint when I´ve been at HL mapping..
But I never mapped for any non-quake based engine. So you´re probably right.
Sorry :-)

But still I think you´re using the polygons in the wrong place. Why didn´t you use a block under the chambers? Who looks beneath them? All the details in the level are from the players perspective beneath him.

as far as i know a quake based engine has a fabulous boolean-kind-of-system that fixes the issue for you :)

an engine like renderware wont do the same.

12 December 2003, 05:57 PM
Here's an update. More detail above the player's waist, but those textures are still not finished.

SPM-Thanks for catching those tri-fans. That cut the poly count on the tubes a ton, never mind the side effect of making them more engine-friendly. (-:

I'm curious about what kinds of issues engines have with intersecting polygons. I hear that it's bad, but it's something that can be found in most console games even today. Things like shadows and weapons are major culprits, but there are also things like segmented character's joints. Is the "don't make it intersect" rule one that only applies to the environment itself?

Dieblein-The panel under the tubes is there to put holes in the floor around the base of the tubes. It makes a big enough difference in my eyes that it's worth the extra texture and 2 polyogns. Though I keep debating weather smaller textures or fewer polyongs are more important, as I could make that 1 64x64 and 1 128x256, but that would raise the polycount there to 8.

12 December 2003, 08:17 AM
Originally posted by Tahl'eN
I'm curious about what kinds of issues engines have with intersecting polygons. I hear that it's bad, but it's something that can be found in most console games even today. Things like shadows and weapons are major culprits, but there are also things like segmented character's joints. Is the "don't make it intersect" rule one that only applies to the environment itself?

I've also been wondering about this...

12 December 2003, 11:54 AM

I havent read all of the replies, but I can see the general idea of whats being said.

I do think that the texturing although I can see that it has been refined, still needs a little more work.

Although the lighting will give them all more pop, as it is, they could be a little more dynamicly painted. i dont know, perhaps to me at the moment they all just look a little too painterly, and airbrushed? Just my two cents.

Are you making this for a particular engine, or particular console or PC spec? Didnt quite catch that in what I read.

Keep up the good work, and dont forget to keep posting updates!



Sho Takahashi
12 December 2003, 11:59 AM
i'm a texturing newbie!
Could you please post the floor variation tiles cuz' i didn't understand that polygon splitting stuff.

12 December 2003, 05:51 PM
Nathan--are you talking about all the textures? 'cause the ones above the player's waist and the stuff in the corners are maybe half-done. I'm aiming at getting everything to look like the tubes texturing is. (and the vent on the right of the wall).
At the moment I'm not aiming at any particular spec. Just low poly. I'm probably going to reduce the texture res at least 50%, and maybe more to see how well it holds up.

Sho- This is what I'm using on the floor. hope it helps. (-:

Quandary One12
12 December 2003, 06:15 PM
just a quick question are you trying to make some kind of dragonball z lab? Becuase that is the only show I know of who does pink objects if not, would you please change the color so I don't go mad and they have to put me away :)

12 December 2003, 08:02 PM
I'm not quite sure what it is about the texturing, it just doesnt seem eye popping enough at the moment - even in its unfinished state I dont see the promise in it, if you know what i mean. Im in no way trying to bring you down, dont get me wrong! lol.

You can clearly paint, and looking at it again, I think its just because the colour pallete isnt as diverse as it could be. Perhaps a little more variation and dirtiness in the textures would go a long way?

Im sure once you get it down itll make for some cool renders, so keep up the updates and the good work.

btw, on the back walls, do i spy some things that havent been welded to the walls? are they not supposed to be? if they are, if you weld them, the lighting should be alot nicer on the eye in the long run.



12 December 2003, 03:34 AM
accept for the coloring, it reminds me of the first level in Halo.... :D

12 December 2003, 04:16 AM
Coloring is fine with me. Be original! Don't listen to what they say.

"Make it look like Doom 3!" Screw that. Do what you want to do, man.

12 December 2003, 01:39 AM
Update. More dirt. Still far from complete, though.

Quandry--Pink is maddening unless in the context of an anime? Hmm....WHEE!!

Nathan--Has the dirt I've thrown on there helped? If not, am I not putting enough light/dark contrast in? Or would it help if I threw the red around more liberally?
Yeah, on the back wall there's a few hovering polys. They're holding information on the little screens there, any they probably will be a pain to vertex light. I've got a lot of cutting to do if/when I go that way though so I'm not terribly concerned at the moment.

Matt--As long as it looks good. (-: And I'm rather glad you don't think it looks like Doom3.

A concern that maybe someone here can help me with--most of the textures here hold up really well, even down to 128. The only thing I'm having a hard time with is the keyboards around the room that basically turn to mud when resized at all (those keys are, after all, only 2 pixels wide each). Should I even worry about making things smaller than 512 in this age of powerful consoles? And if so, what kinds of tricks could I use on that center console?

12 December 2003, 11:06 AM
Good to see you progressing, and yep, its starting to look a little better, although, yes, i feel you are right: more contrast is needed.

Would it be possible to see some of the new texture maps?

Without looking, Im guessing that to represent the metal youve just used grey, and as good as this is when used well, metal is more dynamicly represented when texture painting. Its always wise to really stress the dark and light areas with colour, rather than contrast of one area. So instead of using lighter and darker greys, you could look at the grey you have in the colour picker in PS - or whichever paint package you are using - and play around a little to let the grey youve chosen define two light defining colours.... Par example...dark blue for dark, shadow cast/affected areas, and a yellow/ brown for the areas in stronger light. Although the skin might look to vibrant in colour when painting, once added to the scene, and once the scene is lit, it'll really dramatise the skins, and compliment a nice light set up.

Hope this helps and doesnt sound as though Ive been babbling! If you need to see what i mean, I'll post a skin posted by a friend of mine - i view it as a near perfect example of what Im referring to.



12 December 2003, 04:21 AM
I think the details and everything look good but it does seem kinda drab..that pink is a very blah color, saturate it more or go with a redder ting...and add some complimentary colors to the shadows like green etc. put shiny light areas for dramatic affect...put wires hanging go crazy... I know you have a budget but what could a few wires hurt...

12 December 2003, 05:14 AM
ok I did a quick tweak..I might of added too much contrast but you get the idea...

12 December 2003, 05:21 AM
Definately more orance than I'd had in mind. Also significantly more eyecatching. How did you do the highlights on the glass?

12 December 2003, 06:17 AM
Well you can still remain pinky mauve is it? just up the saturation. The highlights were done by using the straight lined lasso in photoshop drawing a rectangle area and taking the burn tool or is it dodge..(the one that brightens things up) and starting from the center with a soft edge for your brush and a low opacity... they are called cuts and are used alot in comic book coloring.

12 December 2003, 07:46 AM
Progress made. I probably need to brighten some stuff up now, but tell me what you think.

12 December 2003, 12:56 PM
Looking much better now, it's actually got some atmosphere. Maybe a little too dark though (as you said). Floor looks great.

12 December 2003, 01:07 PM
a couple of words about intersecting polygons:

imagine a flat plane with a cylinder stuck trough it. make a boolean and youll get all those nasty polygons on the plane connecting it to the cylinder.

these polygons will be calculated by the engine if the cylinder intersects the plane in the game. also, the remaining polygons of the cylinder behind the plane are calculated. a huge waste of performance.

another option is to place the cylinder VERY close to the plane, but not intersecting so that it seems to be stuck in it. the drawback with this is that you COULD get errors with the Z-buffer while rendering the game, and you also get a "jagged" seam due to the fact that they are not one single object. and, you have two objects to render instead of one.

the mesh will be optimal if everything is one single object, but its as always a matter of priority and what looks good. performance vs. aesthetics.

12 December 2003, 03:53 PM
Certainly looking more dynamic, and gernally darker - although I cant help feel that the wall on the left behind the containers is too dark. Perhaps, as I saw in an earlier render, you have red glowing things..perhaps just have the glows evident, and a little detail being picked up by the glow.

Certainly looking sharper - keep at it.

12 December 2003, 02:49 AM
SPM--Does the engine boolean things even when the intersecting parts are separate objects? (ie, robot arms, "blob" shadows)

12 December 2003, 08:01 PM
Originally posted by Tahl'eN
SPM--Does the engine boolean things even when the intersecting parts are separate objects? (ie, robot arms, "blob" shadows)

every polygon intersecting another creates the additional calculation mentioned above.

it is even better to actually make a real boolean in the 3d-software instead of making intersections in the engine. this way you get more polygons, but in return you get better performance in the engine. this means ofcourse that you have checked your mesh to see that the tri-stripping also flows well.

as for characters there are hundreds of examples of intersecting mesh. hair, clothing, skinning related deformations etc.

some developers are very strict about clean meshes, some are not. its all about what you can estimate having room with performance-wise.

notes: the quake level editor has a very neat boolean function that makes everything to a one mesh model. in 3d-software this is more difficult.

in every level-editing tool ive seen there has been a strict method by which you work. everything is based on units and snapping to these. this way you will have very precise placing of objects etc. and youre guaranteed a non intersecting environment if you snap edges and vertices according to the grids. if you for example snap the legs of a chair on a floor you get a situation where the chair is not intersecting the floor, nor is it hovering above it. they are merely infinitely close to one and other.

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