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10-18-2004, 11:35 AM
James Kaufeldt has entered the Grand Space Opera 3D.

Challenge Page (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/grandspaceopera/view_entries.php?challenger=3764)

http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1105999787_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1105999787_large.jpg)

Well, here it is.

Had a few moments to spare tonight, and it felt really wrong to celebrate my fourth consecutive challenge with a non-completed entry - so I gave it a final push.

I had so much more planned for this, but somehow it feels better to join the happy bunch of challengers with a final image posted :)

All the best to all ye weirdos out there!

10-18-2004, 12:43 PM
Coming soon to a challenge thread near you:

The legendary system collapse of Neuronicon XIII

A thrilling story of heroes, malfunctioning machinery and personal in-flight waste recycling equipment. Dynamics! Explosions! Wonderful color schemes and hideously large, galaxy encompassing communication cablebundles! Preposterously enormous intergalactic repair shops! Furry animals!

...stay tuned for the full synopsis.... Don't touch that dial!

10-18-2004, 12:54 PM
ah ill be watching out for those schetches dude

G/l To you too !

10-18-2004, 01:00 PM
hey james ... just wanted to say hi and you already got my vote for "community award"

smiling already for what i'm anticipating to find in this thread

on another note i saw your trying to get away from teaching ... are you sure you want to leave that varitable "fruit basket" of young females for cg??? .. this proves your crazy:)

10-18-2004, 01:05 PM
Voutlooz - Sketches are a few days away... GL yourself!

pigwater - Oh, hi there. A little early for those votes perhaps :D But comment appreciated no less. Hope you'll have better luck with the timing for this one, if indeed you are planning to enter.... And I believe the exact term is 'clinically insane', that's at least what the doctor told me last time :blush:

10-18-2004, 01:16 PM
well as long as you get the good "meds", that's all that matters .... as for me i'm undecided ... i'm travelling next month and pretty busy after that ... but then again i've never finished a challenge (well , one) so why should that stop me ... but either way i'll be watching the fun and games

10-18-2004, 01:43 PM
Back again for a contest... nice to see ya here I will follow yours steps James !

10-18-2004, 01:52 PM
bring those furry animals on wabbit :D

10-18-2004, 02:00 PM
Hey James, seems like wild bunch rides again, ehehe
good luck man!!!

10-18-2004, 02:06 PM
:p :p :bounce: :p :p

No comments ... :p

10-18-2004, 02:25 PM
Good to see the old bunch hanging around - lets just do our worst :D

10-18-2004, 02:38 PM
Good luck James!

10-18-2004, 02:41 PM
Let the challenge wars being =) heheheheh Cant say it enough this is going to be a blast.

10-18-2004, 02:42 PM
Looking fwd to watching this one! :thumbsup: GOOD LUCK!

10-18-2004, 03:30 PM
Best of luck... I'm hoping for something in the greatest traditions of Douglas Adams. Do it justice.

10-18-2004, 07:28 PM
dam...i remember your alienware entry and i know youre going to kick some a** in this one...i cant wait to see your incoming master piece...good luck friend!

10-18-2004, 10:29 PM
James....................I am expecting soooo much "Eye-candy" with your entry I wish I had a third eye........:arteest:

Here is to Space opera's and grand epic scenes.............All the best to you,and here is to almost infinite possibilities for this challenge..............Now bring on the "Neuronicon XIII".............And a few malfunctioning machines to go with it sounds zesty............:cool:

10-18-2004, 10:46 PM
Thanks for your greetings guys... I'll bring the story here, a brief synopsis, just to give you an idea about my plans:

The background:
Neuronicon XIII, a nice little planet in a galaxy far away, is more or less controlling most of the trade and politics in a distant solar system. The neuronicons are good guys - there's no doubt about that, but since they have the power, they also have enemies. For the past 300 years they have been safe, not exposed to any major attacks from their antagonists - mainly thanks to their technology, effective defensive systems and financial superiority.

The most obvious reason for their technological advantage is their use of an extremely radical approach to clustered computing. Every city across the planet is in fact an enormous CPU, and every city is connected to the main server - a CPU of insane proportions installed several miles under the planet's surface. The power of this setup is indescribable - among it's features we find the capability to accurately predict the local future, which undoubtedly is the key to the neuronicons' successful living.

The moment:
The scene I'm about to model and render occurs at a very sensitive point in time. After 300 years of peace and quiet, it just so happens that the main server CPU is acting a bit strange from time to time. The neuronicons have decided to replace it with a new one. This is not a very simple task, since the processor itself is about as large as a 50-floor building and has to be hauled up by several large freight ships. Unfortunately the enemy forces have found out when this operation is to take place, and they plan to launch a massive airstrike at the very moment the CPU goes offline - the brief moment when the neuronicons are merely sitting ducks with an inoperable defense system.

The snapshot:
A backdrop with the huge CPU being pulled out of the ground to the left, long wires running from it to the freight ships hanging high up in the air, searchlights flashing, a swarm of enemy fighters around the CPU like flies on a pile of dung.... a soft watery landscape heading towards a nearby city/node to the right... In the foreground, a single but mean-looking battledroid waving a big chaingun, and just behind it our hero, Lord Panzerpants, right arm pointing to the sky, his hand holding the remote for the planet-auto-destruct-o-matic just in case he has no choice but to blow everything up rather than surrender the planet to the enemy.

It's the ultimate battle for the Neuronicons.
No matter how it ends, nothing is ever going to be the same.


I've got some thumbnails sketched up so far, but I'll post something better later on instead.

Rock on, and good luck to all :buttrock:

10-18-2004, 11:17 PM
sounds great so far. Definitely one Ill be keeping my eye on.

10-19-2004, 12:15 AM
Jeez, James :eek:
a brief synopsis Written the 'bible' for it already - good luck, be watching the updates closely :)

10-19-2004, 12:29 AM
Can't wait James! Sounds great. Think BIG, BIG, BIG!!

10-19-2004, 02:04 AM
uhh, you gonna kick a## :bounce:

10-19-2004, 02:12 AM
Hi James,
Looks like everyone is here again! I can't. Maybe in the next challenge.

Good luck fellow :)

10-19-2004, 06:09 AM
this is going to be good. just let me get some popcorn and a good seat... good luck little wabbit!

10-19-2004, 06:44 AM
Ahoy, cool idea you got there. Will be interesting to follow this. Sounds massive.
Keep us updated! :thumbsup:


10-19-2004, 07:04 AM
Yess the ultimate battle for the Neuronicons; that sound good and no mercy for the render :D

10-19-2004, 07:35 AM
hahaha wonder what got you thinking about cpu's ........ like it :D

10-19-2004, 07:45 AM
miketche - Dang it, now you got me adding an epic battle in the background as well :D

jddog - Nah, I always tend to torture the renderer... this will certainly not be different...

flyingP - My lack of a decent one :D

All ye others - It's going to be a blast! Got my thumbnails pretty much solid now, so I'll head on towards a more serious set of sketches soon, and then hopefully post some of them tonight or tomorrow (my scanner is not at home anymore, so there's some additional logistics to be worked out)

10-19-2004, 08:03 AM
I'm glad you're taking this down a light-hearted, slightly kooky path JamesMK. I'm sure it's needed amongst all this heavy space angst.:D

Peter C.
10-19-2004, 10:13 AM
Sounds like a great idea! Really looking forward to seeing you implementing them.

Best of luck James :thumbsup:

10-19-2004, 10:33 AM
Hi James,

great to see you here!:thumbsup: ..and it's hard - I'm looking for a more or less cool idea and u just got such a great vision... Love your idea with the CPU. Very creative!:buttrock:
Ur idea helps me to see the theme from another view...!!Thanx so much.

I'm looking forward to see updates errhh upgrades;-)

May the render pipelines be with u:scream: All the best to u:-)))

10-19-2004, 10:59 AM
Hi JamesMK!

Sounds very good...

I'm really looking forward to your job!

P.S. emmm... what about the cooling system :p

Good luck!

10-19-2004, 11:15 AM
ammm ... again you are here ...thats make me feels ......awsome
good luck james ...
you wabbet post something soon

10-19-2004, 11:27 AM
erilaz - Well, dangit, I might manage to squeeze some angst in there as well... Don't think I can touch your threat towards the very fabric of the time/space continuum though :D

Peter C - Howdy, fellow swede - I see you're in too... This will be a lot of fun

Saschi0815 - Good grief! You're here again - I'll keep my fingers crossed for your hardware this time

splotch - Hey, cool... Oh, and I'll post something right below here:


Can't have three pages and not a single image, so here's my compositional calculations for you to study :D I changed it to a greek font to make it easier to follow :rolleyes:


10-19-2004, 11:34 AM
Looks like a super secret mission planning...hmmm 42 right?


10-19-2004, 11:48 AM

Composition Outline
mumbo jumbo


ΥΟΘ ΑΡΕ ΣΠΑΨΕ ΝΘΤΣ!!! ΧΑΧΑΧΑΧΑΧΑΧΑΧΑ (->> τρανσλατιον (swithing keyboard from Greek to English)..YOU ARE SPACE NUTS)

10-19-2004, 11:48 AM
The mad wabbit in space!! This is going to be fun :thumbsup:


10-19-2004, 12:03 PM
yeah, impresive concept! I guess you'll need a CPU as large as you had described the one on your planet to render it! You are speaking Lots of Deatails, will you make it on time?

10-19-2004, 12:07 PM
Some cool concepts here. I'll definitely be watching this one....

10-19-2004, 12:23 PM
Pufferfish - 42 is certainly the answer. Alas, if we only knew the question...

Dimitris - Oh, I spelled 'mumbo jumbo' in greek correctly :bounce:

Cartesius - Yep, hope you're joining too (if you've got that graphics card issue sorted by now that is)

Sky_one - Unfortunately my own hardware power is far less than most people around here have. Yet I'm confident that I'll be done in time. Just have to make the right decisions along the road.... compositing layers, details in textures rather than geometry and so on and so forth...

unitstudio - Glad to hear that!

10-19-2004, 12:39 PM
Sky_one - Unfortunately my own hardware power is far less than most people around here have.

never actually knew just what a pocket calculator was capable of :eek:


10-19-2004, 12:48 PM
Hi James,

This is a really nice story you have got here. Can’t wait for the first concepts. Good luck to you and bring on the furry animals.:bounce:


10-19-2004, 12:55 PM
Sounds very interesting :)

10-19-2004, 01:49 PM
Nice start, good luck James :thumbsup:

10-19-2004, 06:43 PM
welcome aboard James , good luck with your entry , the concept is taking shape . Keep on

10-19-2004, 07:24 PM
flyingP - Hey, it's a 466 MHz OK? :D ......pocket calculator... yea-yea-yea.... hah!

Russel_Nash - Ah, well, you will soon notice that you actually COULD have waited for the first concepts.... You wouldn't mind at all....

superlayer - We'll see how things go....

Eyad - Right back at'ya!

adr - It will get there eventually... not today though :D


OK, the much dreaded SKETCH MILESTONE coming up in the post below. Put on your peril-sensitive glasses, sit down, grab on to something and hold your breath........ *omg omg omg*

10-19-2004, 07:24 PM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098213882_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098213882_large.jpg)

Unfortunately I still can't paint.... Aside from that, this serves as the Concept Sketch milestone. (Don't worry, the nausea will settle in a few minutes).

This is what I'm considering right now, though it apparently needs a much more clear colour perspective and a bunch of other things - things that will become more understandable as soon as I enter the third dimension.

What you're looking at is the action-packed background (huh?) along with Lord Panzerpants and his trusty battledroid in the foreground. The final POV will most likely change quite a bit, but this will have to do for now.

10-19-2004, 07:59 PM

just out of curiosity too what have you painted that with wabbit :curious:

10-19-2004, 08:02 PM
just out of curiosity too what have you painted that with wabbit :curious:
A wet sock and a bar of soap. :D

No, seriously though, it's painted with a neat little app called ArtRage (google it) and my trusty old mouse. Someone who actually can paint would probably make some stunning stuff with that program, which incidently happens to be freeware as well.

10-19-2004, 08:09 PM
A wet sock and a bar of soap. :D

works better than you would think :wise:

10-19-2004, 08:43 PM
Interesting stuff man... I think you should try getting the sketch a little bit more detail, so people that look for details (like me) can talk more about the picture.

All I can say about the sketch is that looks very dramatic :\

10-19-2004, 08:50 PM
I'm totally with you there, ARSA - even though I will not do anything further with that particular painting, there will be more sketches showing partial details later on... I usually work through it in this order - rough blocking/composition first, then separate detail sketches for the involved objects before moving on to the actual modeling.... So, hang in there :D more to come...

10-19-2004, 08:57 PM
Hey James................ I can see very easily where you are headed.The sense I get is a very dramatic fierce and intense battle.Large in scope.I like the character ideas,the angles,the BG that goes with them.The whole scene carries alot of weight..................:thumbsup:

My only comment on the help front would be to possibly move the characters just a bit to the center of the picture,as of now the building to the far right looks to be partially growing out of Lord Panzerpants head.......Just a slight crit and tip.Other than that I see epic battle scene in the making with a grand scale written all over it..............:arteest:

10-19-2004, 09:02 PM
possibly move the characters just a bit to the center of the picture,as of now the building to the far right looks to be partially growing out of Lord Panzerpants head.......Just a slight crit and tip.Other than that I see epic battle scene in the making with a grand scale written all over it..............:arteest:
Ah, much appreciated pointer! Although a building in his head strikes me as rather interesting, it's not what I had in mind this time (shocker!) - I'll make sure to rearrange that when the time comes :thumbsup:

Sidenote: Haven't found your thread yet, Virtuoso... You ARE going to enter, yes?

10-19-2004, 09:04 PM
Heh!!! Hey hello all here! I'm new, just wanted to say that theese are the best sketches around and cool story line too... Keep it comming and good luck!

10-19-2004, 09:08 PM
just wanted to say that theese are the best sketches around
I truly appreciate your comments, and welcome to my thread - but you REALLY should check around in the other threads as well, because these are much closer the the WORST sketches around :D Have fun and welcome back!

10-19-2004, 09:32 PM
wet sock ey..... /me has and idea :))

10-19-2004, 10:32 PM
hey JamesMK! still like the free softwares things eh? :D You still have the heart of a good ol' blenderhead! hehe

Keep it up dude! Can't wait to see your stuff in 3d!

I might aswell enter soon, just need a good idea and a bit of free time :D

10-20-2004, 02:36 AM
ahh the virtues of being a cg'er. TIME = No job!

10-20-2004, 03:01 AM
Great story ... (why don't they just install the newer CPU in another location, and switch between them instantaneously ? ... oh ... i know ... because there wouldn't be any battle left :) .... )... that was just something that striked me as i was reading the story ... it's no big deal .... the image is all that matters....
So, looking forward in seeing images to depict the original story... i'm kinda' tired of huge battles and huge spaceships gathered in a huge fleet... it's too common...

Good luck and keep it up !!! ... u've got something there :) and i really think (hope) you (anyone) won't be judged by the concept sketch :)

PS: why did u choose such a ... horrible ... name as panzerpants ? :)

10-20-2004, 06:21 AM
But I like your initial sketch !

10-20-2004, 06:41 AM
James, what a great story you've got there, when i remember your art work on machineflesh and alienware i feel this challenge will be definately rough.
good luck friend. i'll check your progress indeed.


10-20-2004, 07:16 AM
markovicd - No funny business now, ya hear?

X-WARRIOR - Long time no see! Hope you're doing OK... and I'll refrain from bugging you with questions about... er... that project :D And yep, with the exception of Cinema4D and Photoshop, freeware is the way to go. Hope to see your thread in here as well soon enough... The theme should be right up your alley.

spirogyro - Indeed. Though I'm personally working this month at least :argh:

Zeratull - Good point about the flaw in the story. But it's like I usually say when watching action-adventure movies: "Never kill a good story by introducing logic." :D Good point about the battle factor as well. I'll keep it as a mere background detail - not very prominent in the final image.

jdddog - Maybe it's time to get your glasses adjusted :D

Designer2 - Thanks, mate. I'll keep an eye on yours as well you know.


That aside, I've been doodling some more. I'm not 100% convinced that my current concept will work just yet, so there might be some changes soon. Been drawing some designs for the battledroid to warm up, but I don't really feel them either. Much more concept work needed. Stay tuned, and may the schwartz be with you and your projects!

10-20-2004, 07:22 AM
Hello JamesMK!! I really like the innovation and the power in your story!!! I'm new to these Grand Space Challenges so I hope I'll learn alot even by just watching!!! Wish you the best starts!!!

The sketch is not too explanatory to my eyes...but I see the triangle! Anyway, keep it up! Waiting for the partial sketches....CPU and staff!!! Bring in the Terra-Hz!!!:twisted:

10-20-2004, 08:26 AM
jdddog - Maybe it's time to get your glasses adjusted

lol or cleaned do you mean ? :D haha

10-20-2004, 09:25 AM
Hey Wabbit ....the story is way cool and at the same time simple and i think u gave a more space tech taste to your story with this giant cpu stuff. I lke the concept too and i think that i will soon see there the WABBIT BUBBLE twist ( it's there in your head..i know :D )

What i would like to see more but i don't know if it is proper for your composition is more structures in the center background. Maybe also u can show ionization in the atmosphere the moment they detach the CPU or the moment they attack on it...

P.S : don't tell me u are still using that revised Pentium with less than 512 Mbytes ram ?.... u are my hero :bounce:

BUBBLE NUT :thumbsup:

10-20-2004, 09:41 AM
terraarc - In a historical perspective, all my sketches are famous for being rather impossible to make something out of :D so you're not alone there... The teraHertz thingies are booting as we speak....

jddog - Cleaned AND adjusted

Dimitris - Some more filling in the background center might be a good idea. I will probably show some of the more distant city|nodes there... It's a good observation: the inner area defined by the triangle would feel empty without it. Some ionized air and electric arcs might fit the moment quite well - - - And yes, I'm still on my 466 MHz/224 MB RAM :D ... just need careful planning, and everything will work out fine :scream:

10-20-2004, 10:15 AM
markovicd - No funny business now, ya hear?ok, i wont :( :D

10-20-2004, 01:13 PM
^^ GREAT, I’m looking forward to see some more sketches, I like sketches, they give me the necessary amount of information to visualize the final product :D; that way I can give you my personal opinion based upon "What would I like to see"


10-20-2004, 01:45 PM
Amazing story!! :applause:
And good sketch, want to see more! :thumbsup:

10-20-2004, 07:46 PM
Very nice orignal concept, Waiting to see more updates:thumbsup:

10-20-2004, 08:40 PM
just want to get clear on this, "Lord Panzerpants", does mean we need to expect another version of the “groin adapter" :eek:


10-20-2004, 09:12 PM
markovicd. - I'm glad to hear that

ARSA - Yeah, there's a bit more coming below now...

SuperXCM - It's a horrible sketch, but I've got another one for you below :D

madshooter - Coming... coming...

flyingP - Nah, no groin adapters this time :D Have to come up with something infinitely more silly.... Not yet though [damn, there really should be an eyebrow-waving emoticon available around here somewhere]


So, I've been playing around some more.... New concept painting below::::

10-20-2004, 09:12 PM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098306771_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098306771_large.jpg)

Just playing around with an idea for the battledroid design. I want something that would seem to be an effective device - just legs and a big chaingun of sorts...

10-20-2004, 09:14 PM
this design rocks! :buttrock:

10-20-2004, 09:26 PM
just want to get clear on this, "Lord Panzerpants", does mean we need to expect another version of the “groin adapter" :eek:


...HAHAHAHAHAHA..This did make a lot of impression last time James...lol.....

Now...you are right JamesMK...with some city nodes u are ok back there ...i like the Battle droid...and i think i can imagine how will this go...i am waiting man....i want bubbles .....let's have some... :bounce:

(by the way ..as i was looking on the Droid...maybe u need a back weight to balance it...and then again maybe not ...sorry i am getting carried away....do your bubbles! ) :wip:

10-20-2004, 09:35 PM
sorry just occurred to me, I forgot to add a "Daaaa Daaaa Daaa" before 'groin adapter' :D

10-20-2004, 09:38 PM
Bloody hell - you guys really need to lay off the groin adapter theme :D *sniff*

I'll come up with something else, right? Right. OK. Bwaahaa!

10-20-2004, 10:12 PM
I checked this one out, and you've got a great story behind this, and the preliminary artwork is also looking fantastic! Keep up the amazing work!

10-20-2004, 10:31 PM
Hey Nice "battlemech"!!! I die to see your 3D models!

10-20-2004, 10:33 PM
Nice sketch, a lots of things going on there. I like the captain's
hand lifted in the air...looks like he's holding a flare...me like!!!

10-21-2004, 01:14 AM
Nice chunky designs. Reminds me of some kind of 2000 A.D. comic cover crossed with warhammer and that Amiga game Walker. Anybody remember that game?:D

Lovely sketches. Getting excited!

10-21-2004, 07:33 AM
Yeak... :sad: too much friends here... and I can't participate...

Then James... for sure... I'll follow your thread... I read faster your story... as usually, I don't understand all... but I agree with it...
and May The Force Be With You :bounce: and with your BattleDroïd :twisted:


10-21-2004, 08:13 AM
Krypyl, GaNNEl - Thanks guys, that's encouraging to hear.

EmpY - A flare is a great idea! It's really supposed to be the remote control for the planet-destruct-o-matic... but I could make it look like it's combined with a flare somehow, it would be quite cool. I mean, it's alien technology, so anything should be possible... The reason it looks like a flare is probably that I went a bit too wild with the palette knife there for a while :D

erilaz - Hmm.. . not played 'Walker', but I take it it looked pretty lame then? :D

Lemog - Ah, very nice to see you around here. Too bad you will not be joining us then :cry: but thanks for your kind words and I'll hope you'll be around to watch the ride then at least.


More stuff coming later tonight. I've got some more pencil sketches scattered around the house, but no longer any scanner - so it looks like you won't be seeing too many sketches except for the ones I've posted.... Sorry about that. I will start modeling the battledroid tonight and post some of that instead. I figure the droid will be the best place to start to get my modeling hands warmed up properly. See you soon!

10-21-2004, 09:11 AM
Good luck James looking great so far i :thumbsup:

10-21-2004, 10:10 AM
Thanks Linda - though it's not easy to make any sense of it just yet, I hope to be more clear once I start modeling :blush:

Oh, and I just found a picture of the WALKER from some abandonware Amiga game Erilaz was talking about... It seems to be made with the same idea in mind as my battledroid, although mine will be even more "barebone" so to speak:

Image above copyrighted by whoever designed it in the first place.

10-21-2004, 10:24 AM
Work,work,work! The second sketch seems more descriptive :) ! Nice BattleDroid, quite massive. Back to work, work, work!!!:bounce:

10-21-2004, 12:50 PM
James! - great to see so many C4D'ers here, and I am looking forward to yours!

Love the story and concepts thus far! :thumbsup:

10-21-2004, 12:54 PM
I like your story very much. Lots of potential there.
Knowing your talent, can't wait to see that epic burlesque ballet lead by lord Panzerpants!

10-21-2004, 12:56 PM
you remember that discussion we were having about KFC :eek:


10-21-2004, 01:12 PM
terraarc - Yup. All work and no play... or if it was the other way around :curious:

kromekat - Right back at'ya - we shall soon rule ze earth *doom doom doom*

m@ - From what I've heard, he's one helluva dancer, so it might turn out to be fairly interesting. I hope my 3D will be more convincing than my 2D :D

flyingP - I do... I have some problems sorting out how it relates to this very moment though... unless you mean that my paintings induce a strong urge to throw up in a most hideous way :D ... that would make sense :lightbulb


Today's modeling session will begin in a few hours (checks watch...) erm... actually in about five hours.... followed by a break for one hour while I'll be watching this week's episode of '24' (third season).... followed by two more hours of modeling, after which today's update will be posted. Technically that will become tomorrow's update, since it will be after midnight... nevermind....

10-21-2004, 01:15 PM
flyingP - I do... I have some problems sorting out how it relates to this very moment though... unless you mean that my paintings induce a strong urge to throw up in a most hideous way :D ... that would make sense :lightbulb

no but that walker image you found sort of brought it back to mind :hmm: not sure i should thank you for that :scream: :scream:

10-21-2004, 10:16 PM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098396987_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098396987_large.jpg)

Just to get things rolling... Here's my humble start on the head of the battledroid. I want a certain balance between hard and smooth surfaces here.

EDIT - I'm a bit of a slow starter it seems. This is my first real project with the upgrade to C4D R9, and the modeling tools are revamped quite extensively... all for the better of course, but it takes some getting used to actually... I'm slowly getting the hang of it again :D

10-22-2004, 07:58 AM
While looking at this again I realize that I don't feel it at all either :D

Have to go back and rethink this whole thing for a while. If it really was any good I would have the bulk of the modeling done in 3 to 5 days, and I just can't see that happen with the current concept.

Must come up with something else me thinks. Better to rethink now, with the odd 90 days still left, rather that trying to force a less-than-perfect concept into something it is not.

/me runs back to the lab :wip:

10-22-2004, 08:51 AM
well ..i understand what u are thinking...but maybe u don't have to change your approach to your concept...maybe you just need to refine what 's in your mind about it...(i don't know if i am making sence...sometimes my ENGRISH are ...very engriSH...:scream: ). I like the story and the Droid concept(...i still need the back weight on that guy)...i am waiting to see how will u express it ...:wip:

*Bubble subscribed*

10-22-2004, 09:27 AM
I aggree with Dimitris, the story is awsome and the droid too (well, at least those parts I can clearly see! :)). Perhaps another aspect on the scene would do a lot difference. Anyway, I believe there is no restriction to your inspiration whatever you decide!

10-22-2004, 09:34 AM
u might want to give the gatling gun some support on the barrels

i doubt that loose barrels would be accurate due to centrifugional forces or how ever its spelled
would just give it that tad more gatling gun feeling to it :)

remember your making a killing machine :)
it would be kinda lame if it looks like its not going to kill you :)

10-22-2004, 09:45 AM
well ..i understand what u are thinking...but maybe u don't have to change your approach to your concept...maybe you just need to refine what 's in your mind about it...

I'd go with that.

.....maybe you just need another cup of coffee :D

10-22-2004, 01:34 PM
Dimitris, terraarc, Voutlooz and flyingP - Thanks for your input. You've all got valid points in different ways :thumbsup:

I've spent most of my day today in the great outdoors, away from the computer a bit - which has resulted in a different take on the subject::

I will stay in the Neuronicons' universe, but I will show another pivotal moment in their history rather than the great system collapse/CPU switcheroo event.

While working on the Alienware challenge I learned a very important lesson: If I don't feel the concept 100% from the get-go, it's no point for me to work on it at all. Simple fact. I just can't do it.

My first idea for this Space Opera doesn't work for me. The main reason is that I have a mech and some spaceships appearing as rather primary objects in the image, and the plain truth is that I never really enjoyed doing those kinds of things :D

Thus - enter the NEW IDEA!


So, we've still got this universe where the Neuronicons rule. They have effectively taken control over all inhabited planets and planted their city|nodes all over the place to get their insane piece of computer equipment to run as effectively as ever. They also have several nodes on all of the other planets, and those nodes retrieve local data which is sent on to the mainframe on the Neuronicon home planet. All races of the universe live in slavery.

There is one single planet, El Fluffo, that has yet to come under Neuronicon control, and my image will show the horrible day when this last fortress of independency is assimilated into the Neuronicon network.

El Fluffo is a rather primitive place, a self-supported agricultural civilisation. They don't do any spacetraveling themselves, but prefer to stick to their own business, which mostly revolves around growing, cooking and eating potatoes.

THE ASSIMILATION shows a dramatic moment where the Neuronicons are planting their nodes into the soil of El Fluffo, and bolting the last few pieces of titanium plates on a planet-encompassing grid of steel built around the entire planet... The last few shreds of sunlight being forever shut out, never to shine on the Fluffian potatofields again. :D

Now, as I'm doing something from the underdogs' POV, with a healthy amount of intergalactic angst - I'm at peace, convinced that I've got something that will work :wise:

So, after just a few days, I have now learnt that I shouldn't stick to the first idea, but rather take a long walk in the great outdoors instead and wait for a second idea.

Concept sketches to appear tonight. Thanks for looking :thumbsup:

10-22-2004, 02:24 PM
sweet! I would like to say, is a very interesting story you are developing here :D

10-22-2004, 02:45 PM
sweet! I would like to say, is a very interesting story you are developing here :D

and it has potatoes :thumbsup:

umm, long walks in the great outdoors......you're not getting.....well, healthy or something? :D

10-22-2004, 02:49 PM
.....you're not getting.....well, healthy or something? :D
God please no! That would be totally out of character...

10-22-2004, 02:53 PM
God please no! That would be totally out of character...

you'll be dancing naked in forest clearings next :D

10-22-2004, 02:59 PM
you'll be dancing naked in forest clearings next :D

HAHAHAHAHHA...i fell of my chair ...hahahahahahahah...U ARE NUTS...hahahah

sorry for the no meaning post....hahahahaah ....dancing naked in forest clearings...hmmm ..ghhrrrh

clearing voice...sorry.:bounce:

10-22-2004, 04:04 PM
SuperXCM - It's a horrible sketch, but I've got another one for you below :D

So, I've been playing around some more.... New concept painting below::::
Yeah it's better of course!!!:eek:

10-22-2004, 04:45 PM
GOtta love the insanity of this thread. But seriously, love the droid head design, though to be honest i was a tad baffled as to where exactly its front was.

10-22-2004, 05:39 PM
Mabye that's how you work. First come up with a non-workable idea. Sort of develop it. Scrap it all, then come up with a concept that blows everyone away! :buttrock:

10-22-2004, 08:39 PM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098477582_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098477582_large.jpg)

OK, a quickie 3D/photoshop sketch here to save time and humiliation :)

To demonstrate what I have in mind now for the assimilation of the last independents.... You've got your average tall boxes representing the nodes, a soon to be complete 'ceiling' above the entire planet, some evil hovercrafts down below.... and I hope you can see the nice Fluffian potatofields disappearing towards the horizon.

Subject to minor changes, but now I'll get to work....

10-22-2004, 08:43 PM
flyingP - No.

Dimitris - Go away.

SuperXCM - Not too sure about that.

miketche - I'll get back to you on that.


10-22-2004, 08:50 PM
Lots of fun going on here. LOL.
I like your new sketch.
I have nothing clever to say yet.

10-22-2004, 09:32 PM
hmmmm.... I don't see any potatoes :)

10-22-2004, 09:34 PM
you'll be dancing naked in forest clearings next :D
thats my dayjob man !

10-22-2004, 09:36 PM
thats my dayjob man !

:surprised :surprised I hear the pays good :eek:

10-22-2004, 11:18 PM
nice restart James...i like more this sketch...i can imagine the nodes youre talking about are not going to be square shape ...do they?...please give me a little sketch of one of them so i can imagine better the scene....
sorry maybe im to exited to see this becoming alive...
im watching u James!;)

10-23-2004, 10:43 AM
Ok everyone, now JamesMK has started to rock. Very nice interesting concept. I love your
droid head model nice details, clean model.
Man keep rocking, nice job:thumbsup:

10-23-2004, 10:57 AM
superlayer - Doesn't matter... just nice of you to pop in :)

flyingP - Can't see the potatoes? Look closer....

Voutlooz - Quite the opposite of what people usually say, but you really should quit your dayjob :D

rattlesnake - Hey mate! Previs on the nodes coming up....

madshooter - I'm afraid the droid head has been turned over to the vast empire of 'da treeshkaahn' ... other things cooking though...


Started roughing out the node design. Update coming up below:

10-23-2004, 10:57 AM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098529038_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098529038_large.jpg)

To clarify slightly what I have in mind for the nodes, here's a little previs on it. Some inspiration (very very remote, but still) drawn from the movie 'Epoch' if you've seen that one.

This is a segment of what a city|node is composed of. The final thing will be very tall and huge, and my current plan is to have them hover a bit above the ground (hence the Epoch hint) - this will also offer some interesting lighting problems since a few of these things will get indirect light only (no shadows) so I'll have to think hard about a viable occlusion solution (hey, that rhymes)

Very basic modeling using cylinders, some cutting and extrusions, FFD deformers and a shear deformer.

10-23-2004, 11:14 AM
Sweet I like it. :)

10-23-2004, 12:36 PM
cool .. but wouldn't your coffee slide off your desk??:shrug:

10-23-2004, 12:41 PM
Eyecatching the design on the city nodes....i really want to see where u heading with this :) ...naked in forest...with squirrels all around.. :scream: :p

Keep going man ...i am very curious about the asimilation idea...(oh oh..again i write ENGRISH.)

10-23-2004, 01:40 PM
looks cool, unique design, can't wait to see e final composition though :)

10-23-2004, 02:07 PM
rmmmmmhh... j'adore... then... I like... but... how it's it's possible to walk inside ??? or to do another things... or maybe it's for sleeping... or only for rabbits ??? :scream:

more... more... more...

I think that's not easy to wash angles of glasses... I go asking to my wife :twisted: (I'll take care...:eek: )

10-23-2004, 04:39 PM
hey...nice design mate...now is much clear to me...hmm something really amazing is cooking here..i can feel it in the air!...

10-23-2004, 08:34 PM
now is much clear to me...hmm something really amazing is cooking here

that'll be the potatoes :D

....still can't see any though

10-23-2004, 08:51 PM

10-23-2004, 08:52 PM
much better :thumbsup:


10-23-2004, 08:56 PM
ROLF!!...theres no doubt youre in the NUTS club!...you both!

Peter C.
10-23-2004, 08:57 PM
Hey James, you got two very cool asteroids there :D

10-23-2004, 10:11 PM
BookMansBlues - Goody!

pigwater - Technically yes - but Neuronicons don't drink coffee....

DimitrisLiatsos - The squirrels are driving me nuts.

Edric Yoeliawan - The final composition is soooooooo far away :scream:

Lemog - You're right, this is only for wabbits.... But I'm sure with this highly advanced technology, they've got self-cleaning windows, so it's not really a big problem....

rattlesnake - I think it will be pretty neat, but there's so much work to do before I even get close....

flyingP - :p

Peter C - It is! If I remember correctly, the geode in 'Eon' was referred to as 'the potato'... I guess there is a deep meaning hidden here somewhere....


Updates coming below::::::

10-23-2004, 10:11 PM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098569492_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098569492_large.jpg)

Settled on a design for one type of node segment. There will have to be a few more with various features and functions, but I have to start somewhere.

Also unwrapped and started painting a little in the colour channel... nothing serious, merely trying out a possible surface. No spec or bump maps here yet, hence it looks a bit bland currently.

10-23-2004, 10:13 PM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098569582_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098569582_large.jpg)

Just an early stage of the texture painting phase...

10-23-2004, 10:14 PM
The nodes are really shaping up.
I dont think I would like to live there ughhh.
Are they flexible?

The potatoes inspire me to eat fries now. Great!!!

Mmmmmm potatoeeees..... ralle ralle...

10-23-2004, 10:15 PM
Very cool modeling! I like the style of the bulding! Keep going!:thumbsup:

10-23-2004, 10:38 PM
good work James, i love the cam\view
good lukc friend
stay out of trubles man :twisted:

10-23-2004, 11:55 PM
And here I was hoping for "Space bunnies from outer space"....................:drool:

Well the next best thing to space bunnies are node thinga- ma- gigs.....:cool:

As always I will keep my eyes peeled,as I know this will be off the hook soon enough james...............:arteest:

10-24-2004, 12:53 AM
WOW James impressive architecture, remebre me the tower of pisa....

10-24-2004, 06:32 AM
...good starting for the textures of potatoes factory James... :thumbsup:

10-24-2004, 09:20 AM
superlayer - Hmm... not really flexible as in 'bendy'... modular at best, which is indeed a form of flexibility

SuperXCM - I'm on it!

splotch - I never manage to stay out of trouble. This will certainly not be an exception.

Virtuoso - Sorry, no spacebunnies. And I hope this will fly soon - it's not off the hook yet... lots of work this time :scream:

jddog - It's a good sign if you in particular appreciate the architecture. I'll keep expanding on it until it hopefully will end up looking rather sporty :D

Lemog - Thanks... lots of painting to do. It's really the first time I've had the proper tools to do any real texturework (got BodyPaint 2 now), so it's a learning experience unfolding here...


I'll be building some more node modules today and continue texturing... Slow progress so far, but I hope to pick up some speed along the way...

10-24-2004, 11:35 AM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098617716_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098617716_large.jpg)

Although it's certainly much too early to worry about lighting, (with 95% of the modeling work yet to be done) I still wanted to make a rough test to make sure that what I have in mind will indeed work out decently... I think it might.

What we have here is one spot over each node, with hard shadows and a neutral white light. To get some sort of colour perspective, I've set the foreground fill (arealight) to give a warm cast with very saturated orange light. The background fill (also an arealight) emits cold cyan coloured light. Then there's some mild distance fog applied.

The POV here is rather much an aerial one... if I stick to that I will have to make a very detailed, large-scale ground to convey the intended mood... not sure about that yet... back to modeling.

10-24-2004, 11:35 AM

good stuff man.

so inspiring...

10-24-2004, 11:52 AM

Nice modelling, and your textures, although v. early, are very promising.
waiting for more updates ;p

may the cheese flow

10-24-2004, 02:39 PM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098628797_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098628797_large.jpg)

A first start on one of the Fluffian villages... Because of the POV chosen, I'll be needing a lot of houses, we're talking hundreds here, so I've kept the geometry as simple as possible. I'll have to make them slightly more detailed however, but most of their look will be made with textures eventually.


pinnamraj and Versiden: Aye! One order of cheese coming up....

10-24-2004, 02:58 PM
wonderful man....i think u are right ...textures can do the trick for more details on them since we are talking for hundreds of them....waiting for more :bounce:

p.s : am i the only one who hasn't start modeling anything...lol

keep it up friend...I 'll be back! (oops ..wrong movie)...

10-24-2004, 04:03 PM
Coming along very nice James . Doesnt C4D have some sort of instancing for the houses ?


10-24-2004, 07:24 PM
I love the curved walls. The roof looks more boring, very normal proportions and angles. Perhaps they could be made steeper or more squat to contrast with contemorary architecture. Or even curve like the walls?

They will look great with some more details, chimneys and little towers perhaps - I am guessing when there are 1000's of them you will see the roof part more than the walls given your viewpoint so this bit needs the most detail. Looking forward to the next installment!

10-24-2004, 07:41 PM
Dimitris - Yep, textures will be the way to go... each house will after all occupy a veeeeeeeery small area of the final image, no point throwing too many polys at it... And don't worry about not having started modeling yet - we all know that you could finish a couple of insane motherships in just a few hours anyway :cool:

EvilE - About instancing: yes and no. Standard instancing is available straight out of the box. That is not however the memory-saving rendertime type of instancing that I believe you are thinking of here (and that I assume is what you've been using for your lotsa-fighters-at-once test render). To get that kind of instancing (rendertime), I would need a third party plugin. But I'll get around the rendering anyway somehow.

simoncvy - Thanks a lot for your thoughts. I'm building a few different houses right now, and I'm trying to make the roofs as interesting as possible, because, as you point out, they are most likely going to be the most prominent part of the buildings in the final composition. Chimneys seem to help a lot so far :D

10-25-2004, 09:52 AM
I can now see what you meant on the "100% in it" :thumbsup: Quite more dynamic start on the new idea! Cheers to POTATO then :applause:

10-25-2004, 10:08 AM
This is a "krasse" (german for hmmm, lets say extraordinary cool ;-)) perpective. This got a very special optical focussing on your scene. :beer: As simoncvy stated before, the curved houses are really great (a taste of fantasy here),but if the roofs are curved in the same way they will look like traditional witch-houses. What about some muli-leveled houses with a little bit of japanese style(the roofs)?

10-25-2004, 10:26 AM
terraarc - Thanks, it feels much better now :) And I'll do 'the mashed potato' naked in the forest later on.... videoclips to be distributed as soon as they're edited :scream:

Saschi0815 - Thank you... Funny you should say that about the roofs by the way, because I had this idea to include some japanese, chinese or thai influences for the architecture. Initially I had it planned for the nodes, but it didn't seem right for some reason. Might do it for the fluffian houses instead then :thumbsup:


That aside, I'm awfully busy working with something completely different than 3D this particular week, so you will perhaps find that I'm not around the forum commenting your progress or posting a lot of updates.... Things will get back to normal next week though. My apologies :p

10-25-2004, 10:45 AM
comming up really cool... keep it up buddy...and yeah good job on the lighting... cant wait to c it finished ... m trakin this thread. :thumbsup:

10-25-2004, 11:05 AM
You should take a week off.....your too fast anyway.I like the plan,and I know the execution will back it up.Keep at it James,but just a little slower.;) ...................Now get your compositing toolkit out,this scene will be looking for it.Until later James.:arteest:

10-25-2004, 11:21 AM
I kinda figured out a way to have as many as u like and don't worry much about memory....make them Instanced Particles...yes?:bounce:

10-25-2004, 11:21 AM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098628797_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098628797_large.jpg)
what is this? a village for ants?! it should be.. at least.... 3 times bigger..

LOL, just a bit of movie humour...dunno if you saw it. I'm being silly ;p

but as for the modelling it's looking sweet.

10-25-2004, 03:54 PM
Ok-ok everything is right here, BUT where are the space beers?

James, all the space bunnies and mutant aliens are watching you...me included,


Bets beast beerst beks, oh grhmmmmf Best luck to you!

10-26-2004, 07:59 AM
3doid - Thanks for stopping by... more to follow, though this week will be slow...

Virtuoso - Indeedy, lots of intricate compositing excercises ahead... makes it even more interesting :wip:

Dimitris - That's an interesting idea. I'll have to make some tests and see what happens in terms of memory consumption.... have to put that off until next week though.

Verside - He he :D That's from 'Zoolander' right? I haven't actually seen it.... maybe the inhabitants of El Fluffo should look like ants.... nah....

Tremoside - Hey, cool to see you around! Space beers... we'll see about that. So far I've covered space potatoes... more to come hopefully.


Although I'm not officially working on any 3D this week, I couldn't resist doing a little bit anyway... Update in the post below!

10-26-2004, 08:00 AM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098777612_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098777612_large.jpg)

OK, got some work done in spite of other stuff needing my attention....

I have rebuilt the components for my fluffian village, this time with modularity in mind. So I've made separate objects - ground plates, wall blocks, windows, doors, chimneys and roofs. Each object neatly unwrapped and with upcoming 512x512 textures. Adding up all possible combinations of parts, and using bulge and taper deformers, together with a bunch of different color and bumpmaps, I can make a crapload of various houses very quickly, and they will all look a bit different... which of course will make it all a bit more believable rather than having the exact same house appearing 50 times in the final scene....

I've only made one colour map so far, but more to come.

Anyway, this is a preview of the new house designs, with slightly japanese roofs too :)

10-26-2004, 08:07 AM
Cool buildings and pretty houses !

10-26-2004, 08:12 AM
looking good wabbit, the way you've laid them out helps too, took me a while to realise that they're duplicate groups :thumbsup:

10-26-2004, 08:36 AM
Thats an excellent plan James.Like your planning and thinking ahead process,it sure makes sense,and retains some nice quality too.Plus as you say a good variety,avoiding the "Cookie cutter" look.....................Well done..............:applause:

Peter C.
10-26-2004, 09:23 AM
Wonderful diverse look there James. How many poly's are there in total in one "town square"?

Also, when seeing the houses, I can picture them being used as greebles on a large spaceship. IMO, that would be very cool :D

10-26-2004, 09:31 AM
Great job on those roof modifications. They now have a whole bunch of unique cultural feel to them :thumbsup: I like the low angle, the oriental details - and in particular the broad chimney which I think is the most original part of the new design :applause:

10-26-2004, 09:43 AM
gpepper - ThanxX0rs!

flyingP - I must be getting better at covering my tracks then :D

Virtuoso - Well, I have my bright moments, though they are brief and far apart :D

Peter C - Each house is roughly 800 polygons (quads). I could have made it much leaner than that, but since I use deformers on some of them it's necessary to have a bunch of extra cuts to get smooth deformations. Putting them on the surface of a ship is a rather interesting idea.... they would be like small parasites :scream: You could borrow a few of mine to put on your excellent mothership....

simoncvy - Thanks a lot. It seems that slightly weird chimneys help the overall look a lot. And I just realised I've forgotten to make a cylindrical version... I'll add one to my kit...

10-26-2004, 10:04 AM
Cool, pretty houses.:)

10-26-2004, 12:17 PM
Yeppa - thats it, James:thumbsup:

The houses now have a "cultural-feeling" - and they are so fluffytuffi....:D

10-26-2004, 12:46 PM
Create a watch tower :D

10-26-2004, 12:51 PM
Create a watch tower :D

good idea, you never know when the next potato is going to creep up on your :wise:

10-26-2004, 12:54 PM
good idea, you never know when the next potato is going to creep up on your :wise:
LOL! :applause:

10-26-2004, 01:02 PM
It's no laughing matter.... El fluffian potatoes are known to be very dangerous if they feel threatened :eek:

10-26-2004, 01:05 PM
Great job on the modelling!
Pretty good idea to work with modules for all the houses. simoncvy your're so right, the different roofs are cool. I'm so excited. When are going to start creating textures for those buildings?
What other buildings or props are you putting in that village. Maybe a watch tower, like ARSA suggested or fountain or something like that.

10-26-2004, 01:08 PM
sweet. looking foward to seeing the whole scene! good luck

10-26-2004, 01:09 PM
space patatoes armoured with ketchup, now thats a bloody scene!

10-26-2004, 01:24 PM
space patatoes armoured with ketchup, now thats a bloody scene!

that's only when they're in chip mode, otherwise I believe it's sour cream :wise:

10-27-2004, 09:51 AM
You've really been busy with your special cookings! Nice little villages. Interesting to see how this all comes together :)


10-27-2004, 10:09 AM
Puff-o-matic - Well, it's not really cooking now, more like slowly simmering because of other commitments (if anyone starts singing 'long tall Sally' now, I shall strike him down with great vengeance).... But I've made a few more details for the village... a water reservoir (barrel-type, like those seen in old wild west movies) some fence details... stuff like that. What remains is telephone poles and similar things. I need a believable village with an old-fashioned level of technology... a very basic agricultural world. Then I'll make the final layout for the houses and make a matching terrain with crop fields and such... and I've got a great idea for how to demonstrate the destructive powers of the Neuronicon nodes in a subtle way... to be demonstrated as soon as I get past the initial terrain modeling... This particular week will not result in any major progress due to my current workload.... Thanks for stopping by, fishy :thumbsup:

10-27-2004, 10:14 AM
...(if anyone starts singing 'long tall Sally' now, I shall strike him down with great vengeance).... *sings* "long tall Sally..."

Im not gona stop untill I see those details for the village! :D

*sings* "long tall Sally..." on repeat...


10-27-2004, 10:20 AM
You'll end up with a very sore throat :D

Here's the great vengeance strike I promised: :wip:
... OK, so it doesn't look that impressive... Now go away, got work to do! :D

10-27-2004, 11:06 AM

LOL :bounce:

10-27-2004, 11:10 AM

ever heard a squirrel singing 'long tall Sally' BTW, most amusing :D

10-27-2004, 11:11 AM
and....ROFLAMO...weeeeee..check this...(for u James) ..


10-27-2004, 11:26 AM
:D *sniff*

Now knock it off! I'm trying to get some work done here! Goddammit, leave a thread unguarded for an hour, and what happens? Oh crikey... yada yada... mutter... groan.....

10-27-2004, 11:28 AM
:D *sniff*

Now knock it off! I'm trying to get some work done here! Goddammit, leave a thread unguarded for an hour, and what happens? Oh crikey... yada yada... mutter... groan.....

welcome to the club Wabbit :p .......hmmm clubbed Wabbit :lightbulb

10-28-2004, 07:26 AM

send in the french fried army :)

and give them some potato guns ^^

10-28-2004, 07:52 AM
To all - :scream: :scream: :scream:


..::Managed to do a little more work, so I've got a minor update coming below for you guys::..

10-28-2004, 07:52 AM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098949958_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1098949958_large.jpg)

Think I have the necessary details built now. Still got a heap of textures to make, but that shouldn't take too long.

10-28-2004, 07:58 AM
wow! wabbit, very cool, the power/telephone lines are a nice addition too :thumbsup:

10-28-2004, 08:40 AM
Obviously i like it...telephones lines ...great addition...me just thinks that the water barrel thinky should be a little smaller cuase now houses lose in scale ,juts a humble thought,

...keep it on wabbit


10-28-2004, 08:40 AM
looks sweet, very nice cluster of buildings. The models are really cool, and the layout is good too.

10-28-2004, 08:42 AM
just thinks that the water barrel thinky should be a little smaller cuase now houses lose in scale ,juts a humble thought,
Good point - I had a vague feeling it could be so... Textures might change the perceived scale a bit I think, but I had better scale it down slightly too just to make sure. ThanxX0rs greek nut!

10-28-2004, 09:30 AM
I agree, aren't water towers normally only 2 or 3 storeys high.... that thing looks 4 or 5.

I can't wait to see these buildings textured though... should look cool.

10-28-2004, 09:45 AM
what if they like taking really long showers ?? .. then the water tower might be a little small:eek:

very cool ... tons of personality .. reminds me of stalag 13 for some reason :shrug:

10-28-2004, 09:55 AM
I really like those houses, I agree with pigwater, it has a lot of personality. Those details really make the trick. Waiting to see even more details ;) (telephone lines connected to houses, clothes drying on strings , carts, and, and .. potato sacks! ) keep it up...

10-28-2004, 10:06 AM
cool update, I like those telephone lines:thumbsup:
Keep going.

10-28-2004, 10:30 AM
yes, finally I can stop singing!!... Great little village! Now triple the details several times and you got the perfect little Fluffian village on your hands! You gona do rest of the detailing with textures?..if so bring em on!! :D


10-28-2004, 12:06 PM
stevetwist - Good ballpark figure there... I'll adjust that water thingy

pigwater - They only use water to rinse their potatoes - showers is not an option. They are ugly and dirty (but not mean though, actually very friendly... of course, visitors rarely stay long since, well, they never do take showers...). Googled 'stalag 13' but found lots of very diverse references.... anything in particular you could link me up with? Me gots curious :D

m@ - Thanks a lot, and more details like those you suggest would fit the scene... I'll see what can be done :thumbsup:

madshooter - I'm going, I'm going!

Pufferfish - Time for a gallon of Läkerol now eh? Tripple the detail.... OK, hang on a sec...


Next step will either be

1) More details for the village and start carving out a landscape


2) Go back to work some more on the nodes.

Time will tell. Thanks for stopping by everyone :cool:

10-28-2004, 12:14 PM
Wow! - this has come along!! - love that village/town!!

10-28-2004, 12:41 PM
hey that really great james... bravo :bounce: i really like it util now, no particular comments....

10-28-2004, 12:41 PM


it was a tv show in the 70's in U.S. ...

Schultz was the MAN !!

10-28-2004, 12:45 PM
kromekat, jddog - thanks guys :beer:

pigwataaah - OoooooKay, that was one of the things I stumbled upon. Cheers!

10-28-2004, 01:39 PM
Water towers in small towns aren't very big but they don't typically look like a big keg. :D Mostly just open on top to catch water.

Anyway I really like the change between the first town shot and these latest ones. Like little pagodas, they definately have more character now. At this point they look slightly cartoony, not sure what your vision is but that is just my observation. Textures will probably change that.

10-28-2004, 05:25 PM
I really like your little village. What’s in the barrel? Potato-schnapps?:D

10-28-2004, 05:35 PM
WyattHarris - Thanks for your feedback! The El Fluffian houses are indeed slightly toony. This is intentional, and the rationale behind it is to ensure that they look culturally different from the Neuronomicon nodes, which are supposed to be very high-techy and "hard" (from an emotional perspective). The textures will be realistic (ish) though, so in the end we will have something inbetween.... sorta... Good points about my keg too :D

Russel_nash - Yep, gallons of schnapps! :bounce:

10-29-2004, 05:12 AM
great village james , with a lot of style , i really like the toon style in those houses , the telephone lines rulez hehe

Watching closely , cheers :thumbsup:

10-29-2004, 08:41 AM
Hi James, glad to see you again.
As an outsider, both stories (system collapse/CPU switcheroo event vs. The Assimilation of the Last of the Independents) are good enought to be used in a Grand Space Opera scene. Both of them could serve as a major turning point in Neuronicons' universe. You made a strong point considering that you have to feel the concept 100% from the beginnig, before getting involved to much in work. My option goes with The Assimilation of the Last of the Independents. Why? Because I like the general shapes of the Fluffian village (very indigenous and native looking) underneath the nodes and evil hovercrafts. It`s obvious that a mojor event is taking place. And the name El Fluffo is perfectly suiting with the houses design. And the concept sketch is far better than the first one.
He he, and the Fluffian potatofields is a funny idea!!! :bounce:
Good luck James!!! :thumbsup:
I'll be looking forward to your work.

P.S. - Thanks for the ArtRage info. It`s a funny little app.

10-29-2004, 07:46 PM
LOL i really love this thread... theres ll sort of weird and funny ppl here... and i dont get it... wad is abt the potatos anyways... o well.... hey wabbit nice modleing there.. glad dat u didnt used that sqush thing in the buildings... now it ereally looks cool... keep hoppin :thumbsup:

10-29-2004, 09:46 PM
Yeah lot of work already done since my last visit! :bounce: I like this little town, really cool!!

Want to see it with textures. :arteest:

Keep going!! :beer:

10-29-2004, 09:53 PM
adr - Great to see you around, dude. Staying tuned...

PROctavian - Thanks for your thoughts, you seem to have studied this closely... more to come...

3doid - Trying to keep things cheery you know :D Have fun!

SuperXCM - I've got another one for ya below....


OK - I have started to work on a major detail for the terrain. I was VERY unsure of whether I would be able to pull it off, and I still am to be honest, but things are coming along in small steps.... Check post below, and thanks all for stopping by :thumbsup:

10-29-2004, 09:53 PM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1099086799_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1099086799_large.jpg)

So, I got this idea.... The Neuronomicon nodes have the standard issue anti-gravity drive, OK? However, to prevent them from drifting around over the planet, they would need to be anchored properly. Enter THE HUGE ANCHOR thingy (which is lovely because those things will really cause havoc among the fluffian households).

You're looking at an initial test of a rift torn up in the ground by one such anchor.

Modeled mainly with mesh brush tools on a rather dense mesh, then I've added a subtle displacements map and some bump (noise type: poxo). In this particular render I've only thrown a modeled rift on a plane, that's why you still see a rectangular edge around the site in question.

Will have to work on a shader and texture map, add more destroyed houses in the area, add grass, plants and of course lots of potatoes.

10-29-2004, 10:00 PM
AMAZING!!! :eek:

Excellent JamesMK!! The texture and the model is really cool!! Very Realist!! :thumbsup:
More !! More !! More !! :bounce:

10-29-2004, 10:00 PM
There goes the potato-schnapps. :cry:

Very good model for an initial test. Cool idea.


10-29-2004, 10:23 PM
Damn didn't think it'd turn out that good....clever Wabbit, very clever :applause:

10-29-2004, 10:41 PM
Greeeeat, super sweet :). Love those models :). Keep it up! Just want more :bounce:

Peter C.
10-30-2004, 12:34 AM
Wow, James. Thats is so well done :applause:

Those fluffians must be excited now when work has started on the new community swimming pool.

10-30-2004, 01:43 AM
Respect! - that's bloody great James! :thumbsup:

10-30-2004, 02:32 AM
I really like where you are going with this anchor concept...very orriginal.:thumbsup: Im not likin the chain link on it though, it ruins the scale for me and doesnt feel very 'alien'. Besides that, great start...i cant wait to see where it goes.

10-30-2004, 03:43 AM
Great start mate... Keep them comming

10-30-2004, 04:59 AM
really nice work you got there. It'll be nice to see the anchor's path break upwards more and also let the heap of earth behind the anchor look more cracked, its looks very sand-like and soft now.

shouldn't there be carrots too?

10-30-2004, 07:41 AM
wow , damn cool work..

neat and solid realistic work. pls.. tip us on how to arrive at such composition..

damn cool !!


10-30-2004, 08:00 AM
really nice work you got there. It'll be nice to see the anchor's path break upwards more and also let the heap of earth behind the anchor look more cracked, its looks very sand-like and soft now.

or wet cement, although I still feel it's a very good start, the point about the chain effecting the scale is perhaps valid too, I kind of get the feeling that the houses are very small, not that the chain is very big, not really sure how you'd get around that though :shrug:

10-30-2004, 08:08 AM
I have do agree with this scale issue. May be try something the human eye is not so familiar with.

The overall idea is great.


10-30-2004, 08:16 AM
Thanks all for your comments - very encouraging indeed!

The scale issue is an important part of the puzzle. The problem here of course being that I've now introduced two different things with a "known" size, but they are in conflict, which might result in the houses looking small of course. The texture carelessly slapped on the chain doesn't help either as it provides a wrongful sense of scale as well.

Solving the perceived scale problem while keeping a standard chain might be difficult, I'll give it some thought. Russel_Nash is on to one solution.... there might be others too.

Textures for the ground is coming. I do indeed want the cracked earth, but also the sand (thinking different layers of ground matter at different depths here, and the anchor cutting through it turns all that upside down.... it's a messy thing really)

Once again - thank you all very much for looking :thumbsup:

10-30-2004, 08:32 AM
The problem here of course being that I've now introduced two different things with a "known" size, but they are in conflict, which might result in the houses looking small of course.

Actually I think my be more of a perspective issue we are looking down at, rather than up from the houses.

10-30-2004, 09:02 AM
Actually I think my be more of a perspective issue we are looking down at, rather than up from the houses.
Hmm.... that is perhaps a contributing factor as well... In the final image we will indeed be looking down from a rather elevated position - hopefully it will come together better then as we see the chains (or whatever it will be) connected to the nodes very high above the ground... we'll see about that :D

10-30-2004, 09:02 AM
waww! crazy composition !! very impressive! love the chain textures supahyparealisteek!!bravo!

10-30-2004, 09:07 AM
Wow ! This is a really big anchor !

10-30-2004, 09:14 AM
This is just a suggestion (and it may be waht you intend to do anyway, I don't know), but it would be sweet if the image captured the moment just as the anchor was ripping through the town (as opposed to when it had stopped). With debris flying everywhere - creating a stange parallel between the effects of the anchor, and the effects of a twister, both with straight paths that cause a huge amount of damage - it could be a really powerful scene if captured from the houses POV. However, this is only an idea, and I don't actually know exactly what you had intended, but thought I might as well suggest what I was thinking.

10-30-2004, 09:40 AM
Hmm.... that is perhaps a contributing factor as well... In the final image we will indeed be looking down from a rather elevated position - hopefully it will come together better then as we see the chains (or whatever it will be) connected to the nodes very high above the ground... we'll see about that :D

just a thought how's about adding a few birds (or something similar) higher above the town and closer to the camera as a point of reference, it might help to define the scale. :shrug:

10-30-2004, 09:43 AM
That might just do the trick, pig... :thumbsup:

Oh, and stevetwist: that's a very cool idea actually...

10-30-2004, 10:05 AM
True points made about the scale actually! - the best solution would be to convince the viewer of the enormity of the chain would be to bring the viewpoint nearer to the houses, but equally, when you get a whole lot more detail in there, it will probably be more apparent! :)

10-30-2004, 11:41 AM
Just a suggestion, but may be you can use a bunch of smaller chains rather then one big one. Something like this: LINK (http://www.bluesplinearts.de//Temp/jamesMK_test.jpg).
It could be a major polygon killer but, hey, this is what we're here for.:scream:


10-30-2004, 02:42 PM
Several chains instead of one... hmm... it might be worth trying :thumbsup: It sort of brings a cool bondage theme into it :D ... might fit the bill just perfectly.

10-30-2004, 08:55 PM
For some reason when I see that shot I think of three World of Gulliver....I can picture just outside thate shot would be Gulliver chained to the ground by the Lilliputians..............:cool:

I like the look,it is interesting,something new to look at and think about.I like where you are James,and where you are headed,Keep up with the usual fine effort and results.........:arteest:

10-31-2004, 03:29 AM
• Cool sketchs, looks like a promising image

• This is my first Challenge :) It seems every body knows each other around

I'm glad to be here and I wish you all the luck!

10-31-2004, 08:38 AM
It sort of brings a cool bondage theme into it...
I think you did not enter the good challenge !

10-31-2004, 08:48 AM
I think you did not enter the good challenge ! :hmm:
Fear not - I'm all talk and no action anyway :D

10-31-2004, 09:00 AM
I'm all talk

and way too much of that too it would seem :p

10-31-2004, 09:03 AM
Mwaaaahaaaahaaaa! :D

10-31-2004, 09:27 AM
nice work you have here man...like the designs and everything...good luck with the contest techart

10-31-2004, 09:29 AM

that made a 'nice' (if by nice I mean weird) break from the norm... back to work now, hehe.

10-31-2004, 01:40 PM
techart - Thanks, good luck to you as well :thumbsup:

stevetwist - There are some outbreaks of oddness every now and then... But back to work indeed


Minor update below::

10-31-2004, 01:40 PM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1099230012_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1099230012_large.jpg)

Testing a little something for the node engines... there's no fuselage in the middle here at this point, have to come up with a design for it sooner or later.

If you think that I'm jumping around between the various aspects of the scene all the time in a seemingly aimless fashion... you're absolutely correct.

10-31-2004, 01:45 PM
This is shaping up real good and that anchor image is marvellous! I like the fuselage image as well and if you continue like this you'll end up with one heck of a final piece! :bounce:


10-31-2004, 02:17 PM
Awesome work man, looking cool.

Yeah, you do seem to be jumping around, but if that keeps your motivation up - then rock on.

Awesome, that's all I can say.

10-31-2004, 02:30 PM
Had a chance to recap on some of the Challenge threads today, James; and WOW! serious scaling stuff coming on here, and just loving those buildings, too!
The heavy chain (although dam heavy enough already!) would look cool with some other bits dangling off it or the like (some extra features, sort of....maybe some 'debris' from it's previous activities?)
Looking bold and dynamic - Excellent work :)


10-31-2004, 02:47 PM
Excellent!! I like a lot!! The impression af "big-little" (i don't know how to say that in english :blush: ) is very nice!! :thumbsup:

10-31-2004, 02:58 PM
Wow, very impressive. I can see one village being destroyed by that giant anchor and the other being blown away by this engines. Poor little Fluffians.:sad:


10-31-2004, 03:31 PM
http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1099230012_medium.jpg (http://www.cgnetworks.com/challenge/entries/7/3764/3764_1099230012_large.jpg)

This is spooky...Cool scale... hooowwaaa (Al Patsino style voice mode )

10-31-2004, 05:12 PM
Cartesius - ThanxX0rs mate... I have some hopes the end result will be rather funky... we'll see :scream:

stevetwist - Spot on there. If I stick to one single thing too long it gets a bit boring.

Atwooki - Your words carry a lot of weight, so I'm happy to hear that. Previous-activity-debris is a great idea... considering the amount of suggestions I've got about the anchor and chain in particular I have to conclude that this specific sub-concept is a good one :)

Super XCM - Glad you likey... it's a lot of fun playing with scale like this to be honest...

Russel_Nash - Assuming that the fluffians are small and cuddly, maybe they simply deserve to get all the crap that's coming their way :D ... just consider what most people would do if they were presented with a bunch of Ewoks and a flamethrower :buttrock:

Dimitris - Yup, this is part #1 in a series called "things you don't want to see through your kitchen window" :D


Perhaps one more update coming in six hours or so.... Or not...

10-31-2004, 05:32 PM
Somehow those houses remind me of the little house in the monopoly board game. :scream: crazy wabbit, you're definitely heading in the right direction. And as for working in an aimless direction, i feel its rather relaxing instead of focusing on finishing model after model.

10-31-2004, 05:38 PM
nice, really nice...
it will be a great piece of the challenge..
Thanks you to show me this work !
i am very impressive.

10-31-2004, 09:20 PM
With all the hundreds of other threads, I seem to have missed this one. James, the last work of yours I remember paying attention to was years ago when you were doing that Face model (with the scissors) in Blender. Of course you were well ahead of your time (at least as far as the blender community went). Glad your still around doing 3D. I will deinitely keep a close watch on this current project of yours.