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What makes FF games look so good?

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So if a single person were to attempt this how long do you think it would take? Making a FF quality character from scratch? Provided they have years upon years of experience.


Probably 1-2 weeks. I agree with kburk though - if you make the character look great, you will probably also want to make the rest of the graphics look this good. And somewhere between all the levels and art assets needed, you realize the large amount of work that needs done. Then you have other things to worry about besides graphics, like making your game as complex as Final Fantasy. The character might take 1-2 weeks, but your entire game could take 3-5+ years :).

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So if a single person were to attempt this how long do you think it would take? Making a FF quality character from scratch? Provided they have years upon years of experience.


Probably 1-2 weeks. I agree with kburk though - if you make the character look great, you will probably also want to make the rest of the graphics look this good. And somewhere between all the levels and art assets needed, you realize the large amount of work that needs done. Then you have other things to worry about besides graphics, like making your game as complex as Final Fantasy. The character might take 1-2 weeks, but your entire game could take 3-5+ years smile.png.

 

Seriously?! Thats it?! 2, even 3 weeks, even a month is incredibly south of how long I thought it would take. I start school next semester for comp sci so I'm taking baby steps to learn programming. Like a lot of people I really wanna make a game but like many more people I have no where near the skillset required. So I was hoping to hire a few skilled artist to help. I recently inherited a bit of money you see and I was hoping to put it towards this project. Thank you again Shane, you've been helpful beyond words ^_^

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Yeah, a week or 2, but just for that one character, and no environment to put him/her in yet.

 

How much money are you talking about?  A character like that will likely cost anywhere from $250 to $2000, but I can't give exact numbers because I don't really know, though that amount sounds pretty close to me.  And I'm estimating a price like this for just the one character, forget the rest of the art, etc...

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Yeah, a week or 2, but just for that one character, and no environment to put him/her in yet.

 

How much money are you talking about?  A character like that will likely cost anywhere from $250 to $2000, but I can't give exact numbers because I don't really know, though that amount sounds pretty close to me.  And I'm estimating a price like this for just the one character, forget the rest of the art, etc...

Omg thats awesome!! I never realized it would be so cheap xD lol. I just looked it up and I saw prices around $250-$1000/SECOND!! Thats absurd. Who gets payed on a per second basis? I dont need a lot really. I just plan to have 2 playable characters vs 1 enemy in a room. I have a budget of about 100K.

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 So if a single person were to attempt this how long do you think it would take? Making a FF quality character from scratch? Provided they have years upon years of experience.

 

First let's establish the models and environment seen in FF non-gameplay trailers/cutscenes (pre-rendered CGI) are almost entirely totally different models from what's being used in the actual game that is rendered real time. They are much higher polycount and texture resolution models involving complex modelling/animation such as facial rigging and baked physics simulation (cloth, hair, etc).

 

 

 

 I think just a character, normalmaps, animation etc... could be done in a few days.

 

Probably 1-2 weeks.

 

 

I personally find the hours mentioned here way off if we are talking AAA quality models and animations. I don't want to repeat myself over what kind of credit list Square Enix has for single character and I don't want to question the expertise of some other people that made the evaluations.

 

I don't work for Square Enix and I don't know what kind of schedule they have but the actual character design process probably lasts for months before anybody starts modeling anything.

 

In a large game project such as FF "making" a character model with animations is process that last through the game development process. New animations / tweaking are needed almost on daily basis as cutscenes and game features are developed and the models need to play perfectly together in so many instances.

 

Omg thats awesome!! I never realized it would be so cheap xD lol. I just looked it up and I saw prices around $250-$1000/SECOND!! Thats absurd. Who gets payed on a per second basis?

 

 

Without citing the source it's hard to tell if you have misinterpreted something, but it is common for animators to charge per animation length. These rates aren't so absurd if we consider mastering one second of animation can take tens of hours of work especially if we're talking about animating an entire scene instead of one character.

 

If you are considering investing big bucks to get results comparable to FF / AAA titles you should probably do careful background work so you don't place your funds ill online. My advice:

- Make accurate plans on exactly what you need to get accurate time estimates from everyone you need to hire. "FF quality character" needs much further specifications such as detailed concept art, info on polycount / possible LOD, texture maps, texture resolution, rigging description, list of needed animations with descriptions... I could further expand on the details of each of these so ask if there's something you're interested. I've often needed to discuss the needs of client when agreeing on a price of an asset I'm making.

 

- Don't overlook the importance of actually designing the characters, reserve time and money for graphic design as well

 

- Good asset creation results require good coordination, which requires expertise on overall game development If you don't have it hire someone who does

 

- Throw away all these evaluations on what quality takes how long because only thing that counts are the offers and portfolios you are able to get from the professionals

Edited by ShadowFlar3

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Yeah, a week or 2, but just for that one character, and no environment to put him/her in yet.

 

How much money are you talking about?  A character like that will likely cost anywhere from $250 to $2000, but I can't give exact numbers because I don't really know, though that amount sounds pretty close to me.  And I'm estimating a price like this for just the one character, forget the rest of the art, etc...

 

i wouldn't expect to get 40-80 hours worth of work for $250 tbh, normal freelancer/outsourcing rates where i live sit at around $50-$300 / hour depending on their skill level and the size of the contract. (Small contracts tend to cost alot more per hour)

 

For larger projects you're best off hiring a full time artist or outsourcing it to a company in a low-cost country.

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You can get freelance artists for $20/hour. Some pretty good ones too, because a lot of people need money to pay the bills. However, for a Final Fantasy character, you will probably need to find someone really good and works in the game industry and pay them like $40/hour. The number of hours is kind of up to them, I guess, but I estimate you will probably need 50 hours work, which equals $2000 at $40/hour. There might be ways of cutting corners, but quality might suffer.

Source: I have some experience with the whole freelancing thing. Just not to this magnitude, I can only make estimates at this point.

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I agree that I underballed the amount some, though there are bound to be some artists that are willing to work for that cheap.  The final quality may be quite questionable, but you may come upon a gem student working cheaply, mostly interested in a portfolio.  So $250 may happen, but yes, it is much more likely to be higher, like $2000 or more.  I still don't have a source though, as I don't work in the field.

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Omg thats awesome!! I never realized it would be so cheap xD lol. I just looked it up and I saw prices around $250-$1000/SECOND!! Thats absurd. Who gets payed on a per second basis?

 
Without citing the source it's hard to tell if you have misinterpreted something, but it is common for animators to charge per animation length. These rates aren't so absurd if we consider mastering one second of animation can take tens of hours of work especially if we're talking about animating an entire scene instead of one character.
That's a good point - I once worked on a 45 second in-game cutscene, and if you add up the wages for everyone who worked on it, it's about $100000 total, which is over $2k per second of cutscene.

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