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2010 October | PencilGym.com

Archive for October, 2010

i just don’t get it…Minecraft has been nothing but absolute  success. It has become the latest viral bloggers craze, every site has something about Minecraft.

just what about this 1-man-developed “game” is so intriguing that has millions worldwide addicted?

i decided to give the game a whirl on my own finally, the free version “Classic” is readily available for play in any web browser. In this free version, players simply join a multiplayer game with other people, and build anything they can conjure up in their imaginations, with 1×1 cubes. It’s like Kindergarten and Building Blocks all over again. And that’s it.

the world loves that.

apparently as you can see from this Statistics chart available at the main website.

Last 24 Hours: 7280 Sales.

at €9.95 a piece, or about $16USD a piece, thats already $116,480USD. For just the past 24hours. And because it’s managed, updated, monitored, developed, debugged, all by 1 person, all that money goes straight to him. No publisher to split it with.

what gives? @___@
share your thoughts, why do you play it?

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epic short…are you freakin’ kidding me..!

guess which part is real, and what is digital :D

watch first, then check out the “making of” after…


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here’s my “article pull out” for october…if you like what you read here, be sure to check out gdmag.com and subscribe!

this is a small interview with a student game development team over at the Art Institute of Las Vegas, Broken Mind Games.

they discuss the plus points of the Unity engine (which they used for their student game project “Fig”) and why they chose it over Unreal Editor. and i too totally appreciate Unity for it’s amaziiing ability to show new changes we make in the game real time, without the need to recompile the dam thing over and over again just to see our new outcomes…makes me recall the nights i spent waiting literally for my level to recompile in Valve’s Hammer editor to test out new lighting and gameplay flow in the level..”building new leaf…0…10…20…30…40..etc” sigh…Unity FTW!

they also talk about how team chemistry is extremely important…! doing activities with teammates outside of work is key! organizing simple, casual get-togethers to relax, play games, have fun, and most importantly, break down any ice between members! As the team in the article responded, work in the studio became significantly better once everyone bonded..teams would chat between disciplines and offer stronger and better feedback, contributing to an overall better end game!

in the past managing my own online communities, i always emphasized teamwork and encouraged the members to open up and look for positive ways to respond to one another (maybe now that i’ve grown up as an artist, the term used better would be “constructive criticism”?)…it’s “innate” in me to want everyone getting along with each other! :D

anyways, i strongly encourage you guys here to read through this article, it hits many heart points! (?)

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found this the other day, thought i put it here for “safe keeping” and my own reference..
i’m guessing this is somewhat the average poly budget we get when we work on any next-gen game..
key to note is that part about it being mostly dictated by what the game is planning to have on-screen at any one time.

below discusses tri-count:

From UDN: ______________________________________________

Typical Content Specifications

Here are the guidelines we’re using in building content for our next Unreal Engine 3 based game.

Characters

For every major character and static mesh asset, we build two versions of the geometry: a renderable mesh with unique UV coordinates, and a detail mesh containing only geometry. We run the two meshes through the Unreal Engine 3 preprocessing tool and generate a high-res normal map for the renderable mesh, based on analyzing all of the geometry in the detail mesh.

* Renderable Mesh: We build renderable meshes with 3,000-12,000 triangles, based on the expectation of 5-20 visible characters in a game scene.
* Detail Mesh: We build 1-8 million triangle detail meshes for typical characters. This is quite sufficient for generating 1-2 normal maps of resolution 2048×2048 per character.
* Bones: The highest LOD version of our characters typically have 100-200 bones, and include articulated faces, hands, and fingers.

Normal Maps & Texture maps

We are authoring most character and world normal maps and texture maps at 2048×2048 resolution. We feel this is a good target for games running on mid-range PC’s in the 2006 timeframe. Next-generation consoles may require reducing texture resolution by 2X, and low-end PC’s up to 4X, depending on texture count and scene complexity. Environments
Typical environments contain 1000-5000 total renderable objects, including static meshes and skeletal meshes. For reasonable performance on current 3D cards, we aim to keep the number of visible objects in any given scene to 300-1000 visible objects. Our larger scenes typically peak at 500,000 to 1,500,000 rendered triangles. Lights

There are no hardcoded limits on light counts, but for performance we try to limit the number of large-radius lights affecting large scenes to 2-5, as each light/object interaction pair is costly due to the engine’s high-precision per-pixel lighting and shadowing pipeline. Low-radius lights used for highlights and detail lighting on specific objects are significantly less costly than lights affecting the full scene.

and below here i believe they’re talking in polys:

Polygons counts for some of the Half-Life 2 characters:

* Soldiers: 4682
* Police: 3852
* Resistance: 4976
* Zombie: 4290
* Helicopter: 6415
* Strider: 6444
* Alyx: 8323

There are no fixed rules in determining how many polygons you use in your model, or how much texture resolution you’ll use in your materials. There are upper limits of engine capability, (10,000 polygons/model, 17,433 vertices and 2048 texture size) but these aren’t usually going to be what you’re shooting for. You’ll need to consider how many of the character, vehicle, or prop you’re making will be on screen. If you’d like dozens of them on screen at any given time, you’ll have a different budget than if you’d only like to see one of them ever on screen at a time. With humanoid characters, especially for multiplayer use, you shouldn’t need to go over 4000 polygons to get a character that has enough detail to accurately describe the form, bend properly at the joints, and have enough edges to light properly. Of course you can have more than that, but with normal mapping, and high res textures, you shouldn’t really need to.

read on for more over at CGTalk.com =)

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hmm… time has finally come, putting together my portfolio and demo reel..looking at some other reels out there to get ideas for presentation..and oh man..

the stuff coming outta VFS (Vancouver Film School) simply shadows out any of the work coming out of my school..at least in the 4 or 5 years i’ve been at my school, and visiting the winter/spring show events, i don’t recall seeing any kind of work as intense as the work by VFS students. Same degree program, but seems to be a whole different ball game at VFS.

either ways, these are my favorite reels and probably the most inspiring ones. it’s nice to see what another student that went through the same degree program but just at another school can achieve in the same time frame.

cheers and press on.

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