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Kyretzn

Unity Questions about Tile Graphics!

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Hey people of the Isometric Community! Im embarking on a personal project, and I was curious of how people made their Isometric graphics. My engine is not utilizing OpenGL in anyway, however I am using SDL. The engine is NOT 3D, it doesnt use models... Anyways. Ive seen Morning Wraith / Morning Wrath (whatever), and Ive played Arcanum. Now, Id like to have graphics on par with Arcanum, I loved its models, its terrain and its dynamic lighting. Ive got some 3D modelling tools, such as Lightwave 3D, Maya and Blender. Ive also got Photoshop and such. No graphics tablet, but I *could* use the University's Scanners if I needed. So, how do you guys make your Tileart? Do you make a detailed 3D model, texture it, then render it at a Isometric view? or do you simply draw something on paper, digitize it, make it cool looking then make it a tile?. IF anyone is curious about the project, just ask and ill give a little description. :) I intend it to use some technology ive developed recently and that im a little proud of :). ~Kyretzn, ze Black Mage. <warddg1@tekotago.ac.nz>

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you seem to have the right idea... if you are good at 3d modeling do that, if you are good at drawing.. do that. For me, i would use a modeling program

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Secondly, Im curious about the design of the engine running in both Arcanum and Morning Wraith / Wrath.

Are they running in OpenGL? And there objects (including walls, mountains, etc) all actually 3D models projected in an Isometric view?

or are they just standard tilemap, created exceptionally well to cause you to feel wowed?

Im trying to think what would be the best idea, for a nice game.
Im experienced in SDL and can create most things without much stress, but GL, is relatively new to me.

For example, I know how to draw a cube in 3D space, translate and rotate it.
But, I dont like how its done like this :

glBegin(GL_QUAD)
glVertex3f(0.0f, 0.0f, 0.0f);
glVertex3f(0.5f, 0.0f, 0.0f);
glVertex3f(0.5f, 0.5f, 0.0f);
glVertex3f(0.0f, 0.5f, 0.0f);
glEnd();

Like, is there a way to specify the size of your 3D Object in PIXELS?
Rather than obscure numbers?

I understand that the Orthographic view will allow you to do this,
But that basically turns everything to 2D, correct?

If I made the game fully 3D, It would be kinda cool, I could make the structures, Walls, etc, Just Models. Entirely polygonal, I could destruct certain segments, etc.

What are your views?
THe alternative to doing this is making a standard Isometric game, 2D, with Bitmap images for the specific underlying tiles and the structures.

That - or having a prerendered background with specific collision maps and such running in the 'background'.

Sorry if all of this seems disjointed, I havent had much sleep in the psat couple days, Cramming hardcore.

Stoopid tests ><

~Kyretzn, ze Black Mage.
<warddg1@tekotago.ac.nz>

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for the tiles, something like darktree is quite useful, with a bit of photoshopping after to add some details where needed.

for the objects (rocks, edges, buildings and the rest): 3d models, textured then rendered to fit the perspective. it's easier to find a 3d artist (or even do the whole process yourself - free 3d models are everywhere, are easy to tweak to fit your needs, free textures are, well, everywhere) than to find a 2d artist that would be able to achieve the same results. of course, it's a point open to debate :)

at least this was what i did ages ago, for the engine in my sig.

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most traditional Isometric games are actually 2d, and create the illusion of 3d. they are made up of tiles shaped like diamonds, and each tile is drawn individually and then drawn onto the screen based on a map. 3D isometric games are like you suggested, an array of squares textured with the appropriate tilemap. As far as I know, walls and objects arent actually modelled in 3d isometric games, but are still done in the same traditional way. AFAIK, the only advantages to using 3d are rendering speed, and rotation(but its not too difficult to do rotation in 2d either). If you are using SDL I recommend using the 2d method. There are some great tutorials to be found Here. hope that helps!

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Quote:
Original post by Kyretzn
Like, is there a way to specify the size of your 3D Object in PIXELS?
Rather than obscure numbers?

I understand that the Orthographic view will allow you to do this,
But that basically turns everything to 2D, correct?


The space you work in in ogl is entirely up to you. You can make the units be feet, meters, miles, whatever. You can make them be pixels too, but there are a few things to keep in mind here. If you are using a perspective projection, then objects far away from the front plane are smaller than objects close up. Therefore if you set up the space so that one unit on the front plan is one pixel on the screen, a unit on the back plane will be smaller (perspective) so it will be less than one pixel.

If you use orthographic projection then objects are the same size at any distance, so the front and back planes could both have 1 unit = 1 pixel. Orthographic projections are usually used with 2d graphics, but they can be used with 3d as well. An isometric 3d engine would use an ortho projection to render 3d models.

One disadvantage of using pixels as units is that your engine is no longer resolution independant, which is na important advantage of 3d. As you increase the resolution of the screen, objects will become smaller and the area of the world shown by the screen will increase. If you use a different unit, objects will remain the same size at higher resolutions, but hopefully appear more detailed.

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God, Im having a hell of a time making decent isometric stuff.

I cant get Blender to render as Isometric, its always rendering as Perspective... so, I cant really make nice tiles for my 2D SDL Isometric Engine.

*sniffle sob*

Anyone who can make decent isometric tiles, and is interested on working on a quirky game, email me :).

*searching internet for Isometric Tile generating tools*

~Kyretzn, ze black mage.
PS: How do you set the Unit? From say... Whatever it is by default, to Pixels?

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Quote:
Original post by Kyretzn
I cant get Blender to render as Isometric, its always rendering as Perspective... so, I cant really make nice tiles for my 2D SDL Isometric Engine.

In object mode, select the camera. Then select 'editing'(f9), select 'Orthographic', and there you go.
To tune the camera angles and distances, select 'Transform->Properties' (n).

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