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Athonite - 3rd Year Project by Sebastian Vomvas


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#1
Bomber

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Following today's pitching session, it is time for me to create a thread for the solo project I will be working on this year.

 

 

Athonite (meaning "of/from/related to Athos") will be a game level and a short first person exploration game, with platforming elements. The player will get to explore an old abandoned Byzantine monastery and ascend to its highest point.

 

The project is inspired by real world locations, mainly Meteora in Greece, as well as the impressive level design, atmosphere and architecture of Team ICO's games.

 

The game's visuals will be stylised, simplified, colourful and wonky. The Witness and Sea of Thieves are the main points of reference for its art style.

 

 

ltOY4Zf.jpg

Athonite - Concept Art by Artur Zima

 

Things that I have done so far:

 

- Gathered reference and created mood boards.

- Collaborated with the talented artist Artur Zima, who created a very nice piece of concept art for Athonite (displayed above).

- Visited Meteora again this summer, got loads of reference and explored the place to get its feel.

- Rough blockout with primitive shapes, to get an early impression of what the game will play and look like.

- Art tests, created stylised rocks using various techniques to nail down the art style.

 

I will be sharing more here during the next weeks and months.

 

 

For now, here is the current version of Athonite's Lore (subject to change):

 

Athonite is set in an alternate timeline of the real world, in which the Byzantine Empire won the Battle of Manzikert in 1071. This led to a golden age of economic and technological prosperity for the Byzantines, during which they constructed architectural marvels all over the Empire.
 
The game takes place at a fictional region of northern Greece. Groups of monks from Mount Athos arrived there during the 12th century and founded the first monasteries on top of the area’s vast rock formations. The brightest Byzantine architects guided the construction of imposing temples and towering bridges all over the region.
 
Five centuries later, the Byzantine Empire entered an age of decline. Most of these monasteries were abandoned or destroyed.  Some were sacked by invaders, others occupied by mountain brigands. In Athonite, the player gets to explore one of these mysterious monasteries and uncover the story behind its downfall.

 


Edited by Bomber, 25 September 2017 - 11:38 PM.

  • Chlowaii, chrisdunham95, Hann94 and 5 others like this

#2
Moid

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I like the look of this :) Seeing as you're going for stylised you might want to look at some paintings of made in the 1930s - 50s to advertise tourism in Britain (don't laugh!). These were made by the railway companies and many were painted by very talented artists, and your colour scheme / style reminds me of their stylised work

 

Herbert%2BAlker%2BTripp.%2BWales.%2BGWR.

 

Sir Herbert Alker Tripp

 

H.%2BR.%2BWilkinson.%2BDevon.%2BGWR.jpg

 

H. R. Wilkinson

 

H.%2BR.%2BWilkinson.%2BThe%2BCambrian%2B

 

H. R. Wilkinson

 

Jack%2BMerriott.%2BNewquay.%2BBritish%2B

 

Jack Merriott


  • shakeyc123, Bomber and nerdsharpie like this

#3
Bomber

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Cheers Martin! This is really cool stuff. I will eventually need a solution for far away stylised backgrounds and these are good references. Also, something post-process-y could probably be done in Unreal to replicate a similar colour style to these.

 

When it comes to the art style, I'm being very inspired by this GDC talk:

 

 

As well as these:

 

 

http://polycount.com...tch-image-heavy



#4
Bomber

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Mood board spam:

 

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2AvUJ2X.jpg

CkZaX1X.jpg

ZR6xyyP.jpg

aMtGedL.jpg

Jev1Uww.jpg

zmdzvo4.jpg



#5
Bomber

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The first thing that I need in order to start building this level is a bunch of rocks, which I can combine in different ways to create even bigger rocks. I started making them this week and these are the ones I have so far (they are supposed to be the 'medium sized' ones):

 

ZACyZEK.jpg

 

lQ9EDB8.jpg

 

s8iRbtZ.jpg

 

 

You can see some of the elements of the art style I'm going for - polygonal aesthetics, lacking realistic details and noise. Still too early to know how it will all come together, but I am pleased for the time being.

 

My workflow for creating these is the following:

 

1) Exporting primitive from Maya, in the scale that I want it to be.

2) Dynameshing, sculpting/chipping away pieces and exporting decimated mesh from ZBrush.

3) Defining hard and soft edges in Maya, UVing, giving hard edges a slight bevel, cleanup.

4) Baking an edge mask in Substance Designer.

5) Importing to Unreal and setting up material instances.

 

This is what the rock material template looks like at the moment:

 

4c2P1lb.png

 

A thing I definitely want to improve in the next rocks is their silhouettes - I want to push them a bit more and create a larger variety of shapes.



#6
Moid

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I think you should make better rock shapes - those look really crude and look like badly sculpted cubes and cylinders. Stylised does not have to look badly designed! 

 

Look at Eyvind Earle's paintings of deserts - his images look almost low poly and could be adapted to 3D easily and would be much more interesting.

 

eyvind-earle-desert-rocks.jpg

 

desert-rocks-1991.jpg

 

d07dc2d21f813b6b2771ecaa88b97948--americ



#7
Bomber

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I definitely agree that the rocks could look better. Thanks for the reference paintings, Martin. :)

 

Speaking of paintings, I've also been looking at how various artists have painted Meteora (these two are by Artan Kola and Arto Isotalo):

 

 

AIWw9Bz.jpg

 

7MFsExw.jpg

 

By the way, here is the flythrough video I presented yesterday, an early version of the level's blockout:

 



#8
Bomber

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I made a bunch of new rocks, which you can see in my first showreel submission:

 






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