UGAC- Master Chamber- Rules - Revised and Updated Please Read!


*Note: If you want an Printer Friendly Version of this post, look for the PDF below

[b][u]“Master Chamber[/u][/b][b][u]” -THEME:[/u][/b]

Welcome back to the new Unofficial Game Art Competition. Back by popular demand is another level creation based challenge, this time around; you will be participating in the “Master Chamber” UGAC. In this challenge, you are tasked with creating a single interior space (may it be an room, dungeon, ect

) that will populate your game world. Picture if you will, the Dark and Suspenseful rooms and halls of the Resident Evil games, or the large open control rooms from the classic N64 game “007 GoldenEye”. They are all objects from gaming history that have had their status elevated from just another part of a games level to a symbol of the genre. It is now your task to redefine that gaming staple. However, recently, game developers have shifted away from thoughtful level design in their games, focusing instead on other details and in the process leave their potential players with long bland halls and rooms that not only don’t differ from the rest, but act only to get the play from point A to B. When going about designing your interior space, try to take these past failures into perspective and learn from their mistake. Let’s see what your “Master Chamber” beholds for the adventurous gamer!

[b][u]“[/u][/b][b][u]Master Chamber[/u][/b][b][u]” -Guildelines:[/u][/b]

YOUR MODEL MUST fit within “Master Chamber”s’ challenge mechanics:
ONLY model the interior space. We do not want to see the rest of a large vehicle, house or environment that the interior space belongs to…This Challenge Is Only About An Specific (read: ONE) Interior Space. Sketches or a description of what, and how and what the interior space belongs to will be enough.


[li]20,000 triangles LIMIT[/li][li][b]4096x4096 texture space[/li]

THIS IS A CHALLENGE - PLEASE FOLLOW THE TECH SPECS VERBATIM, if you have any questions that are not already asked in the FAQ below, feel free to post them here (in the rules thread) and they will be answered and added to the FAQ’s


YOUR THREAD MUST begin with:
UGAC - Master Chamber -

So if I was creating a thread it would look like:
UGAC - Master Chamber - DevilHacker

** if you do not name your thread exactly as it is outlined above, it will be renamed for you!

“Master Chamber” -Submissions:

Posting guidelines will be in the submission thread. This thread will be up immediately this time around. So if you finish your project early, you can now post it before the final week of the competition. Finished models only, DO NOT post a WIP in the submission thread!

Please do not comment about other entries posted in the submissions thread (note: WIP’s outside of the submissions thread are ok) until all judging is complete and the “ok” is given

UPDATED UPDATED Competition ends August 24th UPDATED UPDATED

Good luck!
-Daren Loney

View this challenges PDF Rule Book:



Q: Where is the Front Page Plug?A: I will try to get this replugged in a couple of hours, if you have any questions/comments please post them as soon as possible!
Q: That Poly Count seems really low
Why was such an number chosen, it doesn’t seem to be very “Next-Gen”?
A: The specs it looks like we are shooting at are high end current gen, mid-end next gen (xbox 360, PS3). If you stop to think about it, 20,000 is really the sweet spot; while it is low enough to not be daunting; it is high enough to get impressive results; while at the same time being not ultra-time consuming (IE: More people theoretically finish). I understand the questions about the polys. But, those are around normal with PC games such as Battlefield 2, Half Life2, and Doom3… Remember, this is ONE area. If you think it is low, make the room smaller… It is all up to you

Check it out…[Link]

Q: How is voting done?[color=white]A: Voting is preformed by designated judges. Each Judge is given six (6) points to distribute among the contestants who have finished their projects. (Note: For your entry to be judged, it must be posted in the “submissions” thread) Each judge will critique each entry and then award 1st-3rd place. First place will receive three (3) points, second place will receive two (2) points, and third place will receive one (1) point. This process will be preformed an minimum of three times by different judges, and then be tallied, with the places announced soon after.
If[/color] you are interested in judging please PM Ghostscape or post in the thread, we’re looking for experienced folks in the game industry!

Q: What do I win if I get 1st place?A: 1st place winner will be able to choose the topic of the next challenge. They will also get their worked “plugged” on the front page. Q: Do I need to model an interior or not?A: 100% yes. While you should probably have props in the environment, the focus is the environment, which means don’t spend 18,000 triangles on a really cool tank and 2,000 on the garage it’s sitting in.
[left] [left][size=2]Q: 4096x4096 texture space what does that mean?
[size=2]A: You can use any combination of any type of maps, but when you add up the area of all of your textures, they should add up to 4096x4096. This means you could have 16 1024x1024 maps, 64 512x512 maps, etc. This is TOTAL texture space, so a 512x512 diffuse map, 512x512 normal map, 512x512 specular map, and 512x512 glow map would add up to 1024x1024 texture space, allowing you to make 15 more props with those same specifications.[/size]

Q:[/b] What type of texture types are allowed?[/size][/left]
[size=2]A: We allow all types of textures to let people focus on overall design and lighting. But, please remember, that what textures you use will be considered when judging entries. So; just because one entry uses the latest and greatest in HDRI rendering, while another uses only bump mapping, the more advance entry will not win automatically. The whole entry is judged.
[/size][size=2] Q: [size=1]Is the 4096x4096 texture space RGB or RGBA[/size]?[/size] [size=2]A: It is RGBA, so this means you can fit your opacity into your diffuse map, your specular intensity into your spec map, your parallax heightmap into your normal map, etc.

[/size] [size=2] Q: [size=1]Do particle effects count towards polycount[/size]?[/size]
[size=2]A: Treat each point in a face sprite particle setup as a single triangle. For geometry particle effects add the total triangle count into the environment. Keep in mind particles typically have complex shaders that are expensive and are not usually used en masse for large visual effects.

[/size] [size=2] Q: [size=1]What about lighting and shaders and other environmental voodoo[/size][/size]
[size=2]A: Do not count baked lightmaps in your texture space requirements, and feel free to light your environment as needed. As numerous engines are out/are coming out with a multitude of different styles and workflows for lighting methods, take advantage of the full capabilities of your renderer. As most engines support either stencil shadows, projection-map shadows, or other advanced shadow techniques, feel free to render with shadows turned on. For environmental shader effects such as mirrors or water, feel free to use either real time shaders (.fx files and the like) or non-realtime shaders as needed, and note which is used. While using real time shaders will shine more favorably on your entry, due to their individualized workflows in engines it is okay to use non-realtime shaders.[/size]

[left][size=1][color=white][size=2]Q: What was this previous nonsense about compression
[size=1][color=white][size=2]A: Ignore it, for the sake of convience and to even the playing field amongst those of us that do not have experience/knowledge of various forms of compression, we’re sticking to a block of texture space instead of compression.



Thanks for this resolution! I know a lot of people were confused and frustrated. It’s nice to know we can have plenty of texture space now.

I do have two lingering questions that weren’t answered from the first rules topic: How are effects and procedurals considered in terms of the technical limitations? Will particle effects, light projections, etc, be counted in the polygon count? My environment will include these, so I would really like to know.


Got a Q:

Is the 4096x4096 texture space allowed to be in RGBA or just RGB?

(Oh and cool we can keep going even without DH:bounce:)


updated the FAQ


Thank whoever that mess got sorted out, I might get round to entering now…


Realized that I commented on some threads lol and it brought this down so let me bump it :smiley:


I can’t help but wonder. Will winnign this ACTUALLY allow you to get one of those nifty “CG Society Award Winner” icons by your name?


No it wont get you an award, you will get a front page plug. With a front page plug, the mods will actually see it though, which would improve your chances. However it seems like over 1/2 of the mods here dont care for game art. I havent seen a cg award been given to game art in a long time… Now that I think about it, other than this challenge, the only game art that I have seen get a front page plug in a long time was BoBo’s work on Titan Quest.


removed for board untiy


Than Sheppyboy2000 you have not seen a lot of it. I have seen a lot of good work. At the very least the best looking ones have gotten pluged and awards. But I agree the mods are lacking a bit when it comes to choosing game-art plugs. Thing is game-art is very diff compared to highpoly modeling. Those diff are slowly being taken away which is good. Game artists with the new tech are able to do far more impressive models than in the past and it just keeps going. Game art can not really impress like a full highpoly model or a very nice painting in these fourms. But that is what a few people here are trying to change. I know I try to get people I know to post game art here. But a lot of those people stick to the mod communities or game modeling community. Which kind of leaves us with a small group of experianced people here in Cgtalk who have done amazing models. But we need more people from the outside to come in and post and do stuff for these comps. I will try to enter every comp that involves level design and as I get more experianced with charecter design ill go for that also.

We have a lot of talented people here just not enough to really make an impact just yet.

Edit: But slowly the number of new and talented people are coming :slight_smile:


I’ve seen Bobo, Mindrot, b1ll, and a couple of others get plugged. Pretty much the people that make fantastic looking characters and are probably people we all find inspiring get plugs. To be honest, a lot of the stuff in the gameart forum simply doesn’t stand on it’s own next to the other masterwork without caveats like “I only had 2k triangles to work with” etc.

It’s possible to get a cgtalk award for gameart but it takes a truly masterful level of skill, but to be quite honest, it does for regular 3d and the 2d guys as well :smiley:

The strongest portion of the UGAC has always been, imho, the learning experience that you get when you have 20-40 people working on a similar theme. People have different workflows, styles, etc, and you get to see WIPs with them dealing with problems similar to what you’re facing. The prize doesn’t matter so much as the learning experience, in my opinion.


removed for board unity


David Sheppard, next time you post please read the header above the message entry field titled “Before posting, please review the following:”


I didn’t enter the compo, to get plugged. It would be cool if it happened, but I would like to think that we should all be in it to challenge each other. To me, a challenge helps me focus, and I can complete something with more ease. Glory and fame is all good, and the victor should get the spoils, but don’t enter a challenge like this win, enter it to become better.

My two cents anyway.


Removed for board unity


…oh no…


Sorry David, I wasn’t looking for an argument.


Neither was I. Tell you what, for the sake of board unity, I’ll edit my previous posts. My opinion still stands but this way, it doesn’t really offend anyone.


I like the idea of fitting the SpecPower map into the alpha channel of the Spec Map, but I was wondering how to set this up to render in Maya. I’m assuming this is how things will work in Next Gen engines like Unreal3, but would it be cheating if I used two different tex maps as a workaround in Maya (with one representing the “alpha channel” of the other, if it were there, being used as a file texture for the spec power)? Or is there a way to plug just the alpha channel in to be used to dictate spec power? Thanks for your help.