Replaced the video with a new one; featuring boosted lighting, a few new static meshes (chains for the roof lamp thingy, pillars at the altar and entrance), a new particle effect (dust particles), and lastly; the body of the Lich now uses 2048 textures instead of 1024.
All the normal and specular maps have been completed, as well as the final lighting and tweaking.
Final Video of our Project (about 700mb)
During this last week, our level went 55% to 85%. about 25% in like 30 hours, right before the 3rd Milestone. I must say this must have been the most intense project I ever experienced, and I’ve endured many hectic projects during these 3 years here at LTU!
Luckily, my character was more or less complete, so I have been able to help Milad allot, since I already been working with materials, particles, cloth, Matinee sequences, and Kismet functions I have been able to help Milad getting these things to work without the hassle I had in the beginning. This meant less of our precious time have been wasted on getting stuff to actually work!
I have also made new walk animations and a turn animation for my character, and spent quite allot of time polishing the animation sequence.
And since the bone controllers I created for the eyes of my character went so smoothly I also made bone controllers to his feet, making them stick to the ground more naturally. (this wasn’t that very important since he never walks on uneven ground, but It did fix a few clipping problems I had before)
I have also optimized all of our particle systems by reducing the amount of instructions on the materials (in many cases, by 90%) And worked a bit on the lighting of our Environment. Dynamic lights have proven to be rather troublesome in cases were many of them are present close to the player at the same time. UDK only renders a fixed number of them at the same time, and when one was replaced by another one, it instantly changed the lighting on the scene. So far, the only solution seem to be to scale down/remove the lights to prevent to many of them being affecting the player at the same time.
I also recorded a video, (heavily compressed)
Today I’m going to show you how far our level has developed. There is only one or two objects in the scene left for me to texture and the post processing needs to be tweaked a little more. Right now we have bloom, DoF, and a baked ambient occlusion over our entire map. Some of the lights in our scene are dynamic and cast realtime shadows, like the torches and the lich-characters staff.
I’m happy with the results on the post process, we also used color grading to have the colors melt with each other a bit more.
The scene needs to be desaturated a little bit but the light rays look really nice thou ^-^
Today I’m happy to present a level in udk. Finally the level is textured, lighted, and some effects are added like particles and cloth-dynamics, even some post effects. The only thing left is some touch-ups like fixing the bouncy cloth simulation and some rough textures. This week has been not too exaggeratedly productive but, lets say it all ends well. I may have many things to polish but the good news is that i will have one extra week to do so and that is way more than i need to finish in time.
this is our Post Mortem and Presentation
Printscreen of the level in UDK
Today I managed to implement some bone controllers to my anim tree. This allows me to set up a Look at function in the matinee that makes my character look at the player if he gets close enough. Really Cool! I know this isn’t something I had planned to do but thats only because I didn’t know the option was available when I planned the project!
The only thing I can think of that I haven’t implemented yet is blend shapes (aka Morphs in UDK), but I really don’t see the need for that anyway, although from the research I made it seem to be a rather easy thing to add.
After a quick test, I managed to easily copy and paste my entire Kismet Setup and my Matinee Sequences from one level to another. All I had to do was to copy the actors and the Kismet nodes, then remake the variables in Kismet and hook everything back up. This is really good news since I unfortunately haven’t been able to work with Milads current version of the level, but since it was this easy to transfer everything from one map to another, this should not be a problem!
I have spent most of my time during the last few days touching up things and making sure everything works. I have managed to set up my character with animation, cloth, and attached particles and dynamics lights to add more effect. I have also textured and animated another skeletal mesh, a book that the lich will be able to interact with in the cinematic loop.
I ran into some troubles regarding the attachments when I was putting the stuff together in the cathedral map. It simply Didn’t want to work, even though it works perfectly in any other map, very strange.
Luckily, setting up the attachment through Kismet worked, I just had to adjust the particle systems a bit to emit using world space instead of local space since the Kismet attach function lacked the ability to use local orientation on attachments.
I have also updated the “About” Page to clarify the goals of this project.
I have started to make new better animation loops as well as researching particles in UDK. Im planning to use Milads props to make specific animations were my character can interact with the environment, as well as making smaller animated props that my character can interact with. I have already made a book that my character will be able to pick up and read and then put back to the ground.
Regarding the particles, Im thinking of adding some kind of effect to my characters staff, like a glow from the eyesockets or some kind of fog like effect around the skull. I have done some reasearch on how I will be able to attach the particles to the character as well.
Wip Playblasts of the new animations. [Video]
Well unfortunately Fraps is not going to cooperate so I’ll be posting some screen shots instead of a video footage. I’ve been playing around with ncloth and environment fog and smoke particles. The collisions are working and everything seems to be in the right place.
I have started blocking out the base colors on the textures and put together a basic material in UDK using my normal maps and diffuse maps.
I’m not very happy about the normal maps inside UDK; so much detail is gone and I don’t seem to be able to increase the texture sizes above 1024. I’m sure I will figure that out soon but I understand the main problem isn’t really the texture size but my UV mapping. I’m sure I could have optimized it better, and I probably should have put more time into optimizing the mesh; removing faces that aren’t really visible and so on. But going back and fiddle with the meshes at this stage would mess up the skinning (my theory is that by adding and removing geometry on the mesh, the vertex IDs are changed, not sure if that is the case though).
I have also spent some time working more thoroughly on the cloth simulations on my character. I noticed that the cloth didn’t correctly collide with the collision boxes I made for my character but managed to solve it by making sure all elements of my character were using the same collision channels. I also noticed that cloth simulations gets all tangled up if the character would instantly move or change animation due to a cinematic sequence that is starting over for example. My goal in the end is to have a cinematic that will seamlessly loop and in that case this should not be a problem, but it is still something that might cause problems for me in the future. So I’m going to try finding a way to freeze such cloth simulations when i need to move simulated cloth instantly.