roninworkz

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About roninworkz

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  1. 3D-Based Icon

    I helped out a friend of mine with his tech demo recently, and created a few fantasy-inspired inventory icons for him. He mentioned I should sell a few of these, but I don't really know how useful this style would be to anyone. I tend to stay away from realism, but this was what he wanted. I wasn't working from any concept, and this was done reasonably quickly. [img]http://www.nvrmor.net/marketplace/imag001.jpg[/img]
  2. Do overused monsters disappoint or annoy you?

    Depends. It depends on the type of game and the target platform. If it is a current PC, 360, PS3 game then yeah, there isn't much point for too much overuse when you have a budget of 8 million and a development staff of over 50 artists (including outsourcing). There isn't much of an excuse there, because you can have a lot of resources and storage space. Not to mention that there are a LOT of techniques that can be used to mitigate this (texture-swaps, generic models that can be fitted with different accessories, etc.) With an idie-type game or games for a portable console (PSP, phones) I can forgive it.. After all, it may be one or two people on the project working their a$$ off...often working a regular job as well. Portable target platforms also have limited horsepower and storage space. Careful character design for characters can help control the overuse. Plan for different textures, accessories, weapons, armor, etc and really mix it up. I knew someone once that was even working on an in-engine morpher that would automatically vary the height and body type for generic characters while preserving texture coordinates. Pretty cool stuff.
  3. How do you write a GDD?

    [quote name='Tom Sloper' timestamp='1313339043' post='4849018'] [quote name='third_ronin' timestamp='1313301047' post='4848864'] I've never been on a project without a MDD. [/quote] We had one on Star Trek DAC, but we didn't call it an MDD. [/quote] Oh yeah, the name itself is irrelevant Just so long as it contains all the goodies on how to create art content for the game.
  4. How do you write a GDD?

    [quote name='Tom Sloper' timestamp='1313295284' post='4848853'] [quote name='third_ronin' timestamp='1313292639' post='4848845']Media Design Doc [/quote] Oh! Hadn't seen that term used before. Practices vary; practices evolve. [/quote] Definitely. Media Design Doc, Art Design Doc, etc. I'll never say that my way is the only way, but proper extensive documentation has its advantages. I've never been on a project without a MDD. I wouldn't do it, but I'm sure it could be done.
  5. How do you write a GDD?

    [quote name='Tom Sloper' timestamp='1313249538' post='4848661'] [quote name='third_ronin' timestamp='1313214135' post='4848520'] your other leads should be pumping out their MDD, [/quote] [/quote] What did I miss? The Art Lead should be working on the Media Design Doc, and the Programming Lead should be hammering out the Technical Design Doc. Everyone writes documentation
  6. To outline or not to outline...

    I'm with Tom Sloper. IMHO creating outlines make the broad strokes easier, and helps people understand the flow of the story more quickly. It's an excellent way to organize thoughts.
  7. How do you write a GDD?

    Remember GDD's are [i]living[/i] documents that are meticulously updated throughout development. A LOT will change as you learn what is really possible within your development cycle vs. what you thought was possible. Start with the broad strokes: high concept, target platform and audience,game play, art style, audio, scale, etc. A good lead artist will provide the visual representation of the lead designers vision, and a good Lead Programmer will tie everything together, making the game itself possible. And remember, as you flesh out your GDD, your other leads should be pumping out their MDD, and TDD. [i]ALL your leads[/i] should be providing detailed production documentation. Good luck and get writing ;) Documentation is a crucial (but sometimes neglected) part of development. EDIT: BTW, make sure you create and update a readme that covers revision history for each document.
  8. Yes, you can be both. You can even be an artist as well, if you feel like you can commit to developing your skills. Understanding the technical nature and limitations of both programming and art will make you a better designer. Back in the early Pleistocene, there were arcades full of video games that were designed and programmed by one person.
  9. Some concept art

    I'm not much of a concept guy, but I think they are nice. They are a little muddy, but you have a really nice sense of color. These would be great for palette reference for a style guide. Content-wise you may want to pick a more rich composition, showing more of the levels, a broader view highlighting key areas of interest. Very nice work for someone that codes as well (no insult intended, but its fairly rare to see people that can work both sides of the fence.) Good job, and keep doing these as you are off to a really good start.
  10. My Character Design Art - would love feedback

    Nice Burtonesque interpretation. I really like the Reaper character, definitely the stronger design of the two. I would lighten his face up to more accurately reflect the concept. As a whole, both of these guys look a tad drab (a common side-effect of earthen tones). Since this is a non-realistic design (YAY!!!!THANK YOU!!) pimp the highlights in texture. Higher contrasting highlights will bring out more details in places like the faces. ZombieCrow would definitely benefit from a lighter face, as the color currently matches his hat, and they all sort of bleed together. His blue is a little too saturated for the rest of his palette as well. Concepts look good. Nice work ;)
  11. XR-H21 Spaceship model (Feedback please)

    Good stuff! I dig the angular style of it, and the front light integration is very slick and flows well with the design. I agree with Prinz regarding the retro look of the rockets, but I think it's the organic shapes of the rockets don't really match the angular structure of the craft itself. Check out some modern day armament for reference. I would like to see much more detail on the hydraulics of the front landing gear. Check out some pictures of modern-day aircraft for reference. Also, your craft looks very tough except for the cockpit area. I would maybe add some reinforced-looking framework for the canopy, similar to say what you may see on an Apache helicopter. Overall though, I really dig the style and can't wait for textures. Good work.
  12. Questions on UV mapping and texturing of models

    [quote name='Ashaman73' timestamp='1312521082' post='4844871'] [quote name='third_ronin' timestamp='1312491095' post='4844700'] I have never heard of anyone starting with painting the texture first, particularly if you are using 3ds max and not a tool like Z-brush or Mudbox. The advantage of doing UV mapping first is that UV coordinates are very easy to adjust to remove distortion. Adjusting the painted texture? Not so much. Don't get into the habit of doing textures first, then trying to adjust the image (stretching, etc) to get rid of UV distortion. It takes a LOT longer, and if you go professional a Lead Artist/AD/CD will rip you a new one for it, because it is a bad habit. I know I would ;) [/quote] Then it should be time to learn something new: [url="http://www.polycount.com/2011/07/11/the-making-of-the-zest-foundation/"]example[/url] , this guy use one(!) texture for almost all the environment. Character artists are not the only one making textures and photo sources textures are still common in environment art. [/quote] Not what I meant. I have made meta-tiles for a 3d engine (A windmill for example, complete with a tiling grassy hill, moss-covered stones, wooden crates and fencing that was all one object in Lightwave, with a single UV sheet ) and all that all fit on a single 512x512 texture. That was in 2001. It takes a lot of planning on your UV layout, but it can be done, and its not really a new technique. When someone is new at something, you want to teach them the basics first. And nothing against the example you showed me, but look at it and dissect it. It LOOKS like it was made with one texture from a palette standpoint. And yes there is more than one way to skin a cat, but from my personal experience I have never run into a professional artist of any kind (environment, character) that works on the texture painting before doing UV work. Corrections, yes....but proper technique and planning will limit those in the first place. EDIT> I see what you mean with photo-sourced textures, but UV layout still comes first. You can adjust them after to your hearts content to match different photo textures...but making sure you have clean, non-distorted UVs should be a priority before you ever think about color.
  13. Dropping the F-Bomb

    I would pass on it. For one, its getting really, really prevalent in games, and IMO is schlock parading as character development. If someone isn't a "tough enough" character without using expletives in dialogue, you have failed as a designer. For another, excessive language is the difference between a "T" or "M" rating from ESRB, which could definitely affect your distribution depending on your publishing options. EDIT> Even in modern FPS games, I don't like it. Why? Because the VO never delivers quite right. IMO, it always comes out as silly and actually detracts from the product.
  14. 3d environment artist block

    [quote name='goldtupac' timestamp='1311033295' post='4837105'] I for some reason cannot find anything I want to model to turn into a scene. Any help is appreciated. [/quote] Think about environments you like found in games or movies. What did you like about them? What genre do you gravitate to? Then make [i]your version[/i] of that environment. Mix it up, get creative. Some important things to remember: - What [i]encapsulates[/i] that environment? What makes a jungle a jungle? There are certain things found in a jungle environment that simply make sense. These things comprise a jungle. These things also form your asset list to populate that jungle environment. -Wanna impress someone? Get your environment up and running in a real-time game engine -Keep it small, and simple, but keep the quality high and make it cool (is a jungle good, or is a jungle at sunset with overgrown ruins better?) Develop a good library of books, games, and videos to pull ideas from, and for modeling reference. Proper reference is essential. I get my stuff cheap from yard sales or clearance isles at bookstores. And don't be hard on yourself, everyone gets creative blocks. ;)
  15. Is Photorealism a bad aproach?

    [quote name='SymLinked' timestamp='1312492561' post='4844712'] [quote name='third_ronin' timestamp='1312491880' post='4844705'] IMHO realism is very limiting. I'd like to see the industry produce some style that goes beyond MW2 or WoW. [/quote] I don't get it. WoW isn't exactly realistic looking, is it? MW2 and WoW are apples and oranges, too. But I do agree, I'd like more stylized games rather than realistic ones. [/quote] Nothing to get, I was a hair off-topic ;) Apologies to the OP. I am just tired of reviewing art candidates online portfolios that are largely WoW -inspired. My inevitable response is "O.K., so what is [i]your[/i] style?" to which I get the "uhhhhhhh...."