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Questions from a newbie

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Hello my name is Nikolai , I am 15 years old and for a long time I have been thinking about starting to learn game desing , but up until now I had no time.So I have a few questions:
1.Do I need good drawing skills ?
2.With what software should I start?
3.Are there tutorials for that software?
4.Are there videos to explain/help you about the business.( example:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zAgpsks29W4 but more detailed)
And could add more information.
By the way I am not asking about concept art , but about the modeling.
Thanks in advance.

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[quote name='BagelHero' timestamp='1352639548' post='4999893']
Whoa, slow down buddy [url="http://www.sloperama.com/advice.html"]and take some time to read the FAQs[/url]!

That aside;
[b]Game Design is not an umbrella term for jobs in the game industry.[/b]

There are different sorts of disciplines in the games industry. Art, Design, Music, Programming, Marketing, Production... I've no doubt there are more. [url="http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson7.htm"]Read more about what sort of jobs there are, and what is required in them at FAQ #7[/url].

So you don't want to learn [i]game design[/i], you want to learn [i]game art,[/i] specifically 3D (at least, from what I gathered). Knowing this may make it easier to search for information relative to the path you're focused on.

[quote]1.Do I need good drawing skills ?[/quote]
Well, that depends. They certainly never do any harm. Doesn't take [i]too[/i] long to build a solid foundation for you to work with, if you're willing. Do you want good drawing skills? And what are you looking to model? Environments, characters? Guns, armor or other gear? Crates?

[quote]2.With what software should I start?[/quote]
A [url="http://www.pixologic.com/sculptris/"]free sculpting program[/url] and a [url="http://www.blender.org/"]free modelling program[/url].
If you're a student, grab some of Autodesk's Student Version programs, 3Ds Max and Maya are both good choices. But again, it depends on what you want to model, how you want to go about it... Sort of need more information.

[quote]3.Are there tutorials for that software?[/quote]
There are good tutorials for pretty much every 3D software I can think of. If you're thinking 3D, remember that a lot of tutorials can be translated to whatever program you use, unless they use a specific feature you don't have.

[quote]4.Are there videos to explain/help you about the business.[/quote]
Yes, there... There are a lot. I cannot suggest any, though, as I mostly use reading material.

Here are some links to places I go most frequently to find said reading material (aside from the oft linked Sloperama FAQs):

It's midnight here, so I might have left out a thing or two, but hopefully there's something of worth in here somewhere. Good luck, mate.
Thank you for the answer :).
I will check out the FAQ you linked.
So for now I want to focus more on objects such as weapons and gears and other kind of objects.
I might go to drawing lessons to learn about the human anatomy etc....

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Now you are ready to pursue being an artist in the video game field. As I am one myself, I will guide you here.

There are many no or little cost open source programs to use, as revealed by BagelHero. I use GIMP, Wings 3D, and Blender for more than 95% of my items, being a semi-professional in the gaming industry. The imagination, skills, and execution of artistic vision is far more important than the tools. Get used to awareness of end user issues in your art and how each one looks around others in a game. As a beginner, I urge you to experiment wildly at this stage for a while in order to explore everything which you use and create. You will be amazed how much more you learn by [u]exploring and doing[/u] instead of following tutorials, though tutes are needed some of the time.

My opinion is that your art ability will benefit according to your drawing skills improvement. To be fair, there are great artists who hardly draw a thing, but most 2D and 3D artists need at least good drawing skills if not expert.

Which programs to use is only somewhat important for a beginner. One very important thing is to learn to create outlines on paper, screen, or your imagination - sometimes all of these - for complex art. This is an important habit to establish early in your career, whether hobbyist or eventual professional. The plan is the first stage of almost all complex art in this gaming industry if you want to create it most efficiently. Another important thing is to have people look at your art and get their reaction. After you understand their initial response, then ask them how they feel it could be improved. Having a team or at least a peer group for reviews is a major advantage in creating art if your goal is mass appeal.

Since you are aggressive now at your age to pursue this fantasy to be an artist, I wrote important things to impress upon your mind which will cause better progress if you follow them. There truely is no limit except what you put on yourself. Follow good artist principles and your success reaches that level of values.

Clinton Edited by 3Ddreamer

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a student version of 3dsmax or maya would be first choice.
a google search will come up with entire lists of free 3d packages for DL.
blender would probably be the #2 choice.
right now i use truespace, as it used to be #2 after 3dsmax, exports to directx format (used in my projects), and i hadn't discovered blender at the time i chose truespace. but truespace is no longer supported.
all the above advise about tutorials, experimenting and playing around with the software, art classes, etc is correct.
the one thing i'd add:
when making models for realtime display in a 3d game, there are two basic restrictions that don't apply to other 3d artwork:
1. use as few triangles as possible.
2. use as few and as small textures as possible.
the simpler each model is, the more you can draw on the screen at once and maintain a decent frame rate.
if you start from the beginning modeling this way, you'll usually avoid the problem of having to simplify your "masterpiece" model that runs WAY too slow.
unfortunately, the best way to get a feel for such things is to make some meshes, load them up in a game and see how they work. a bit more work than just playing around with modeling software. a game engine or mod kit might come in handy there.
being a lone wolf gamedev, i have the luxury of a project-in-progress that i can add a line of code to to load a mesh and another line to draw it and test such things easily.
but basically, in realtime game modeling, the two rules of thumb are fewer triangles are better, fewer textures are better, and smaller textures are better. always keep these in mind when modeling, and you can't go wrong (well, almost never <g>).
note that i say realtime. when doing 3d backgrounds for menus, or whatever (anything not drawn in realtime), the skys the limit (within reason) and you can do anything you can imagine (and maybe find the right plug-in for).

start by getting you tool of choice. maybe download a few and check them out before you decide. all 3d packages are basically the same idea, a way to edit meshes and apply textures. from there its all about features, and the user interface of the package. modeling software is inherently big and complex, and the user interfaces can be daunting at first.

then hit the books / vids and figure out the basics, how to create geometric primitives (cube, sphere, etc), edit them, texture them, and maybe join them together. that right there will be enough to start building models for games. keep checking out the docs/vids to learn the rest of the tool. play with stuff. modelers are very powerful and can do lots of stuff. in the long run, the better you know your tool (your modeling software) the easier it will be for you to make models.

and when you don't know how to do something, don't be afraid to ask. we were all there once.

gook luck, and happy modeling !

Norm Barrows
Rockland Software Productions

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