View Full Version : WIP: Tank (Criticism please)

11 November 2005, 08:37 PM
Hello im an amateur at maya,


I have been working on this on and off for quite some time, its about 60% done. Textures need some looking at and an environment needs creating but it will come in time

Anyway the renders, not of the highest quality

Medium light

Dark render

Different views (normal light)

I'm 14 and just learning the basics of maya.

Let me know what you think, I'm really intrested in what you think but don't forget i need every bit of criticism I can get, so I presume this will be a field day for all you experts

2 questions though:

1)How could i get smoke coming out of the exhausts
2)Any tutorials? for creating cloth to drop over the top of it?

Thanks and I wait in anticipation

11 November 2005, 10:43 PM
14 huh, wow I wish I did stuff like that when I was 14

anyway, its much much better if you post a shot showing the whole tank instead of close ups. or a shot of the 4 views inside your maya

I am not a maya user but I'm pretty sure its quite difficult to do a cloth as well as a smoke

11 November 2005, 11:39 PM
Ta very much. Here you go :)

Do you a want any wires of it?

I want 2 seperate renders one with smoke, the other with a cloth on it

(one running)(the other stood still)

11 November 2005, 11:52 PM
Here you go,

Tell me what you think :)

Thanks (do you need any wires?)

I was planning on doing 2 seperate scenes with the same tank

1) In a warehouse with a cloth(cover) over it
2) The other with the engine running (smoke out of exhausts)

Just wondered how it could be done

11 November 2005, 12:11 AM
thats not bad m8

If your scene is just a still picture, you could do the smoke on Photoshop or a 2d app, if not then I guess you better off with some1 who knows maya.

That left shot, it looks weird, the track/wheels thing, specially the round plates, its not a perfect circle. check what I found on google, ( thats how the track should look I think. Now it has a cartoony feeling.
Finally, are you unwrapping your model, because I'd say that you'd get much much better realistic texture.
Not bad, keep them comming m8

11 November 2005, 03:35 AM

I wish I was smart enough at your age to start learning 3d modeling :) I think it is definately a great start for a person like yourself. Is it supposed to be cartoony? Sorta looks like a Sherman Firefly. I'd recommend going over to or and finding blueprints of a real tank to create. Whether you want low poly or high poly its up to you and you'll learn new stuff either way.

Can you get us a larger profile view of the thing?

11 November 2005, 04:42 PM
Hmmm i didn't really take a cartoony approach to it but hey

Newer render

Its based on the T34-85.

Heres a mess around with environment and lighting

I think the spotlight comes out real nice.

I'm considering revising the whole tank tread to make it more realistic.

Anyone liking my work? (this tank is an assignment set to me by an artist at one of the worlds leading games companies)

I've only been working with maya for 2 or so months but I think I've got to grips with it fairly quickly

What do you mean by a large profile view?


11 November 2005, 06:00 PM
Just a heads up, game art design is the wrong forum for this. Game models need to be made of polygons; it looks like you're using NURBS for the tank.

11 November 2005, 06:52 PM
Just thought you should know, I'm not planning on putting this in a game. i a small amount of the tank is made of nurbs but the majority is poly.

If I was putting it into a source engine I would change all the nurbs to polygons manually.

It's just a model that 'could' be used on the front cover of a game... etc so technically its still game are design but i see what your getting at so thanks for the heads up

Thanks for the crits so far

11 November 2005, 06:54 PM
nice tank
it's great that you're starting at your age.
I started at 12 myself.

I don't know how high the brighness is on your monitor, but in the dark renders, I can barely make out ANY of the tank. If you're trying to hide it because you think it's not up to par, forget it! SHOW your tank! the spotlight should be ILLUMINATING the tank and making it hte focus of the image. I think you have a lot of talent, and posting on the forums is good.

I'm sure there's a tutorial for maya cloth online somewhere, and if you just want it draped over like a tarp, it shouldn't be too hard.

I think the oblong wheels are a bit funny. That and the turret's proprortions are what make it seem cartoony. If you want something more realistic, I'd say get some pictures of a sherman tank and study them a bit. Its the closest looking tank to what you've got.

I'd also suggest rebuilding your turret out of one peice not 3. try some boxc modelling and meshsmooth.

I can't wait to see this finished, gj so far.

11 November 2005, 09:24 PM
I see where your coming from with the turret.

Aerial view : New Turret inc.
New : Behind (PERSP)
New : Side

Made some alterations to it,*** Please bear in mind the small things that i add to this will make it better (small handles + chain bolts + little front gun + lights....etc) ***

I'm not trying to cover it up I just like how you can see faint grey details. That scene was a mess around, I'll concentrate on the tank for a while now, It is supposed to be an T34-85 so looking at shermans wouldn't be all that beneficial.

If someone could source some cloth and/or smoke tuts i would be very greatful as i can't find any useful ones

Thanks (glad your anticipating the final render :D)

11 November 2005, 07:36 PM
Just a little update,

I added a 3D Fluid container and put in an emitter, I'm no expert on fluids but i think it looks aright for a first attempt. Anybody know how i can get a multitoned smoke effect

Tank with smoke
Tank with really faint smoke

I can't found a suitable cloth tut though :(

Anyone got any C&C

11 November 2005, 11:17 PM
well im a 3ds max user, but i can help you a bit, first it's nice to see there are other young people doing 3d things, im just 15 and i've got quite a bit of experience with 3ds max now but your doing very well for only 2 months!! just a few tips, it's a good idea to get blueprints so your model will be more accurate, it looks cartoony now i think, this website is really good, , for the smoke you should obviously use particles, i don't know anything about maya particles but using low opacity 'facing' particles will be the easiest way to create fairly realistic smoke(in 3ds max, dunno about maya), you can add me to msn if you want to

11 November 2005, 01:29 PM
Could anyone help me get better renders using mental ray? Any tips?

Here are two close ups, but I not very happy with the results

Thanks for everyones help so far

11 November 2005, 09:37 PM
Ill add my textures

3 256 x 256

I think some more reshapes of certain things are in order.

Please keep the crits coming, even if your just whizzing through say what you think


11 November 2005, 05:44 PM
Hmmmmmm, seems to have lost intrest I'm sure experienced and adequate people can give their views and crits and improvement lists on this tank which isn't the greatest.....yet

Multishot (excuse bit of photoshop work)


Heres the tank in what could be its surroundings (mountains - 377 tris) small tank

Thats about it. still have to make 'new' round wheels and small handles.

Thanks keep the crits coming :):scream:

11 November 2005, 11:12 PM
Right finally done new wheels

I agree that this probably isn't the best piece of work art on these forums, so either give me some credit or rip my work apart i don't mind as long as its constructive.

Need more shots (clearer ones) then post away

Thanks I have taken alot of peoples opinions on board so thanks

11 November 2005, 11:41 PM
Was it your intention to make the tank with 'stylised' proportions? If not, I recommend getting a hold of some good reference imagery to work from, so that you may create a much more accurately proportioned model. If it was your intention, and you already stated as such without me noticing, my apologies. :)

12 December 2005, 06:09 AM
Looks like a funky tank so far. However if your not going for a cartoon tank i'd suggest, as others already have, acquiring some reference material. My big tip to make this seem more "real" would be to select the entire mesh and scale it all down a little in the Y direction to "round out" those wheels :thumbsup:.

12 December 2005, 04:00 PM
Thanks you two will work on the proportions.

Heres what it looks like at the minute

Excuse the untextured bits i need to do more work on UV

Scaled it down a touch


12 December 2005, 04:45 PM
One thing I notice that you seem to be very concerned with how the renders look from using the Maya renderer. That stuff is fine but you're posting this in a game art forum. If your intention is to place this tank within a game engine your concern should be more with polycount and topology. Basically how your design will fit into the target game engine, how well it will animate and interact with the game environment. How well it looks should be secondary to those things because if you don't have that part down it simply wont work and you'll have to redo it.
If your tank is just "for show" you may have better crits and suggestions, especially on rendering, by posting in the 3D stills WIP forums or the Maya forums.

12 December 2005, 07:47 PM
Hi chaduke, my main priority at the moment is getting a pretty looking model in an environment once i have the scene rendered well i will worry about animating...etc

Maybe it should be in stills but it was a project set to me by a game art designer so i thought it might have been a suitable choice but as you can see im new :rolleyes:


12 December 2005, 11:52 PM
Ya I noticed in one of your previous posts you said you weren't planning on putting it in a game. I must have missed that the first time around. It's funny how often that happens ;)

The textures on your model look almost like procedural textures at this point. I would suggest checking out google image search for tanks and grab some real samples of the metal on the outside of the tank, especially in areas where there's bolts and rivets and other sorts of detail. Even better is if you can find a real life model of a tank and bring a digital camera with you to get samples.

The modelling at this point looks pretty good now that you've made some adjustments to the wheels. Personally I prefer a tank with a more elongated look and less tall. They seem "meaner" that way. I would probably scale down the turret base quite a bit and the part between the turret and the wheels a bit as well, but thats just my opinion.

12 December 2005, 07:27 PM
Chaduke, see what you think of these

New Texture/shape

New Shape

Hmmm tell me what you think


12 December 2005, 10:58 PM
Right I have made some updates on both the texture and shape of my T34-85

All these renders are done by GI preveiw setting in mental ray in maya 6.5

Medium shot -
Another angle -
Back view -
Front Close-up -

A question on my front lights..... how can i make the light from them appear more realistic (using spotlights?) and what settings should i use? intensity,colour...etc)

Notes -

I have temporary textures on the barrels although the final one will be similar.

Whole tank is about 75% complete

If you need any better quality or closer renders just ask, keep this flow of crits coming and to those who have already critted have you noticed any improvements?

Cheers :)

12 December 2005, 08:26 PM
The tank in 2 v.rushed environments


(Small for some reason?)

Tell me what you think (some of the textures used in environments are from


12 December 2005, 08:50 PM
For some reason all your renders look really dark. I'm not sure if it's your monitor or maybe you don't have enough light in your scene. It makes it really hard to see any kind of detail on the tanks surface.

Another thing I notice is in almost all your renders, especially the most recent ones, is that the tank is always partially out of the scene. It's never centered, there always seems to be one part of it chopped off. Your best renders will be with the entire tank showing.

12 December 2005, 11:00 PM
14!!! damn. when i was wee lad i was messin around with 2d animation programs like Iota on the Acorn before 3d, was hard but i enjoyed makin what none of my friends could and entertaing um. If you enjoy creating in 3d and like maya then carry on. all the best look forward to your posts dude. v promising

12 December 2005, 11:10 PM
Are these better?

Thanks for letting me know about the light it looked normal on L1720


12 December 2005, 04:13 PM
cheers PRIOR always nice to hear that my work is very promising

and yes i like creating art in programs maya, photoshop, Zbrush i'll probably be going down the game art route as a career.

Thanks fella

12 December 2005, 04:49 PM
That's much better now. I can see the surface well. One of them is still off center with the barrel sticking out the side. Some of the others have too much extra black area around them.
You should take these into Photoshop and crop them.

I wasn't sure if you had them off center like that on purpose or if you were having trouble with the renderer. I'm only being critical in the way that I see it personally and what I would do. When part of the tank is missing or not centered in the picture I kinda think of it in the same way as when you take a photograph of someone and part of their head gets cut off or something because the camera moved at the last second.

It's looking much better since you first posted and I admire your persistence and ability to learn from criticism.

There's two things I see now that you can possbily work on. One is the texture on those cannisters. I'm assuming that's supposed to be a sort of rusted metal look. It looks a little strange to me, perhaps its being stretched out too much. From the side view there's two cannisters lined up and the texture looks exactly the same on both of them, as if they both rusted the exact same way.
The other thing I notice is the text T34-85 looks a little odd. See if you can get the letters to look a little clearer.

Check out this render of the same tank I found:

12 December 2005, 06:43 PM
Chad, I'm working on 256x256 sheets and the steel bit was only a quarter of that page which doesn't leave alot of room for text so its blured ill see if I can make it clearer

Thanks for your help :thumbsup:

12 December 2005, 09:24 PM

I Have put a college of my work in progress. Not sure if its a decent size yet but anyway.

Here you go

Chaduke, sorry about the cropped bits thats just how it was rendered lol. Ill post some more full version renders of the tank when i make it better

Thanks for all the critcism if there is more i would like to hear from you


12 December 2005, 09:49 PM
Hey im 14 too. I remeber doing a tank like this awhile back. But like everyone else is saying that i think it would be good to look at reference. Try to import Image planes(if you dont know what they are there should be a million tutorials. Then try moving verts to get it to the right shape. Again try looking at the details. Like the barrell of the tank seems off. It may not be but to me it just seems odd. Also could you post wireframes of the tank. Also I think you might find better help in the WIP for Maya. I know that some guy at a art place assigned this to you but people that know more about Maya and not game stuff will be looking at the other WIP forum. Great start though.

12 December 2005, 03:19 AM
hey not bad at your age;), i think you should also should render the tank with shadowing maybe it will turn out to look good in a rendered presentation.

12 December 2005, 04:24 PM

As I have said I have only been involved with maya 2 months on and off, so I'm unaware of how to create shadows

Can someone give me tips on how to get shadows with mental. (Render globals?)

Anyway, The man I'm making it for seems to be happy with the sytle and shape of the tank. But i still feel alot more work can be put into this

(Scotty Doesn't know do you have MSN PM me if you want me to add you :))

Ta fellas

12 December 2005, 05:12 PM did this at 14...geez i was still milking cows at 14...

the tank is really starting to come together buddy!

12 December 2005, 06:57 PM
Okay then...

I pressed play by accident and a few objects either shot up or out of the scene.

I have deleted all the rigid bodies that were there and I have also deleted history. But when i render the shot turns out like this even when i manually move everything back into place.

Can anyone help me?



cheers Jason, yep its almost done now ;)

12 December 2005, 07:08 PM
I have sorted it out now....i hope

I duplicated all the flyng objects move them into positiong then deleted the old ones.

Its seems to be ok now. Anyone else ever had anything like this happen to them?

Thanks :) keep the suggestions for improving my tank coming

12 December 2005, 07:57 PM
This is some nice work, especially for starting so young. :thumbsup:

Not exactly suitable as game art, per se, but possibly as a high-poly target for normal-mapping. As previously stated, it's not quite a T-34, but it's recognizable enough as a cartoony approximation. :)

One thing. Being that the tank is so high-poly, and you've modeled in so much detail, I would suggest bumping up the texture size. 512^2 at the very least, I would think.

Let's see some updates. :)

12 December 2005, 09:10 PM
Hi I have done this all on 3 256 texture sheets one is unused atm

I not sure of all these terms normal map and bump map? I put my textures into UV map editor and moved the UVs around

Are ther any plugins and/or tuts and/or tips on how to bump map

Thanks for comments :)

12 December 2005, 10:38 PM
An update

Sorry its a not so good render .. again lol

Here are some mess arounds with a close up i used photoshop for the splash its really crap and took about 5mins but I'll post anyway

Before -

After -

First time Iv'e had ago at doing something like that and i supose I should use a 3D program like Glu3D or realflow to make more realistic mud but anyway I thought I'd post


I post some better more detailed renders of the tank when i get round to it ;) stil isn't done yet though


12 December 2005, 03:57 PM
A good render here please criticise as I have attempted to normal map

Not sure if I have done it right though

I put my normal mapped texture(blue one) onto the selected objects then I made a new Lambert material and I put the coloured texture back on

12 December 2005, 11:15 AM
I'll post a front render of the tank i'm still trying to get shadows... it's hard work

Please give me crits :)

I have sorted the writing out on the side of the tank(its supposed to have a written on feel)


12 December 2005, 03:42 PM
This isnt supposed to be low poly, isnt it ?
There is so much texture stretching going on on your texture, you should get rid of that.

12 December 2005, 04:19 PM
Yes it's supposed to be low-ish poly and the texture stretching is a problem :sad: but all the green colours have been done on one 256*256 so it's a bit tight. And i can't designate each side a unique colouring as their isn't enough space

Thanks for the reply very much apreciated

12 December 2005, 04:57 PM
Like I said before, you're not going to get low poly if you're using NURBS. Converting those into polys is going to give you a couple thousand even for simple shapes. For example, the turret of your tank is a rounded square; that's going to take a lot of polygons to get it rounded like that. Since tanks usually aren't rounded anyways, you'd be better off rebuilding that as a polygonal box with a few sloping edges, then swapping it out with the rounded square on the tank. That would help it to be low poly. Also, the wheels inside the tread aren't going to work if you're trying to keep something low poly. With that many wheels, they either need to be really simple cylinders, or not there at all. Those are details that you'd be better off leaving to a normal map and a texture, or at least reducing the sides on the cylinders by a whole lot. More like 8, whereas right now they're either NURBS or something like 20.

12 December 2005, 06:21 PM
The wheels aren't nurbs but they are high poly :(. I agree with you though. I should have dedicated more time to texturing and less to smoothing. This is one of my first ever models so if you take that into consideration.

I have realised that smoothing polies is a bad thing in games as the programmers won't like you

lol if I have time i will try optimize the smoothed polies and turn them back into normal low poly.

Thanks fella

12 December 2005, 06:56 PM
You're doing better than i did when i just started out.

Maybe you could paint the dexture on something bigger than 256x256. Try something like 512x512, which still is ok for most game textures, but gives you 4 times as much space.

Anyway, keep it up, you're improving!

12 December 2005, 08:49 PM
Thanks, I'm afraid I have been set to do this with 3 256 sheets.

Cheers guys im taking everything you say on board :)

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