View Full Version : Zelda: the wind waker modelling attempt?

12 December 2004, 04:52 PM
Hey, does anybody know if the eyes and mouth on the characters in "The Legend of Zelda: the Wind Waker" were modeled or textured on? I would like to create a model of similar style, but having never played the game and only going by the tiny pictures in the strategy guide I can't tell how they did it. Any help is appreciated!

12 December 2004, 07:22 PM
Having played the game extensively, I'm pretty sure they're just textured. The animation is much easier to do that way... also keeps the polycount down.
Probably just a little plane for each eye and the mouth with the texture applied to it, so it's not even on the actual head model...

12 December 2004, 05:23 PM
Probably just a little plane for each eye and the mouth with the texture applied to it, so it's not even on the actual head model...
I'm not exactly sure what you mean by not even on the actual head... wouldn't something like that look weird when he turned his head because then the eyes would seem to be floating off of his face? Maybe I'm misunderstanding you...

12 December 2004, 02:58 PM
No, you didn't misunderstand, that's exactly the way I think it's done. Of course the texture might as well be projected onto the head model, but seeing as the head itself never changes in shape, it wouldn't be hard to create extra geometry for the eyes and mouth and have it just a tiny bit away from the head, just so much that it doesn't look strange in a side view.

Then again maybe I'm completly wrong and they have a totally different way of doing it... but that's how I've done it on several models of my own in the past and it worked out well :thumbsup:

12 December 2004, 05:45 PM
oh, so you've done that before... cool! Usually when I UV map a character's head I just map the eyes (I usually model the mouth) directly onto the head. What is the advantage of mapping to some separate geometry instead of mapping directly to the head? By the way, thanks for your help so far!

12 December 2004, 06:10 PM
My main reason for doing it the way I explained was so that I could simply exchange the models when I needed different expressions.
So I'd have one model for "eyes closed", one for "wide open" etc. plus of course little animations for whatever I might need inbetween these states. Seemed a bit simpler than handling all those textures through scripting or even by hand.

Moreover, cartoony animation becomes very straightforward as you can simply squash and stretch the eyes/mouth to achieve various effects, which would be much more complicated using UV mapped textures directly on the model.

12 December 2004, 06:42 PM
ok, that makes a lot of sense. I hadn't considered the squash/stretch aspect but that would definately make it easier so I didn't have to create separate textures for simple things like wide eyes, etc. Thanks again for your help and I checked out your website; great work! You have a very nice style to your work!

12 December 2004, 03:14 AM
Well, I decided to model the eyes, mouth and eyebrows, but I did partly use your idea for the eyebrows. I think it'll be easy enough to animate the way I did it and it won't force me to make extra textures. Here's what I created.

12 December 2004, 10:54 AM
Looking pretty good so far! :thumbsup:

However, another advantage of using textures for the facial expressions is that the eyes won't look so "edgy" if you use a proper alpha channel. Some programs actually allow you to use vector graphics for textures, which I found very useful in this case.
Maybe it's just a problem with your shader or the model isn't properly smoothed yet, but edges like these (or those at his feet!) are what always make a toon stand out as CG.

12 December 2004, 04:42 PM
Yeah, I'm in agreement with you on the smoothing... I'm planning to start over from scratch and use the texture method... I decided that would make it easier to create several similar characters with different clothing, eyes, mouths, etc. That model was kinda' pieced together from a very non-efficient mesh and I just tried to make it work for the situation... it needs to be redone completely...

12 December 2004, 07:39 PM
Well, like I said above I decided to redo the entire model. This time I tried to remain more true to the "Zelda: the Wind Waker" style. I didn't finish the texturing, because I decided I liked my first one better so now I'm back to fixing it. Oh well, here's what I made, and next to it is the original model that i've now smoothed out a bit and started creating morph maps.

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