Wednesday, 9 November 2011


Im starting to concept now after settling on a final roof idea. Ive dropped the appartment idea and just gone for an industrial rooftop. Its now 2 levels for more variety and ive moved the sign to a better place so its not too crowded near the watertower.

Lights and Logos

By now im sure im having a neon company sign in just the right place so its realistic but somewhere the player can see it from. Also, i needed a company name for my sign. I knew i wanted industrial signage so to the point, and maybe with a logo would do.

I wanted to call it, i dont know, something like 'EMPIRE', something grand. However i really didnt want to get into all that copywrite stuff so was extra careful on my name. I thought i could make a take on the word empire and 'logoise' it into something more company like. I played with combinations like :


But most turned out to already be out there a small companies. I really liked the way EMPR looked on my building but this was an Australian Hardware company. After contemplating some additional symbols i came up with EMP-R, which i think still reads empire and doesnt breach the Aussie name.

Here were some logo designs before and after settling on EMP-R:

And this was to be my final logo.

Roof shapes

Exploring layout i couldnt settle on a shape for ages. I wanted something fun from both the player view and above while maintaining a realistic scale and shape. I didnt want something too oversized and barren nor did i want something too small and crowded.

After researching New York buildings i began to get a sense of the assets i needed to provide my rooftop with.

Little things like:

Air vents
A/C units

Aswell as these i wanted one/multiple main focal points for my level to give it something extra.

Water tower

These would be the biggest features and the most interesting so would require the most budget when it came to the modeling and texturing.

I was struggling with the shape of the building so tested some shapes in max.

Here you can see how my idea fits into the city scape as not being the highest building and giving it a more enclosed feel.

The EMPIRE Inc Rooftop

We have been given two projects to complete by Christmas and i am starting with the rooftop project. For this we are required to build a unreal level designed for a 3rd person action shooter situated upon a New York style skyscraper. I really liked the sound of this and after using UDK last year for the first time feel i know the basics enough to get started and get exploring.

So i knew the rooftop had to be situated in New York but still needed to think about the layout, who would use it, what condition would it be in. To get ideas i began browsing the net and using Google Maps over New York to get a good idea of the average rooftop design.

A smart thing to do would be to look around existing game levels because the idea was going to be used for a in game shooter. I had a look at multi player levels because these would need the most diverse and interesting cover and structure, essentially being an arena it would be intreresting from wherever you were on the level.

In the brief our tri count was heigh enough for us to get creative but the texture budget was going to be a challenge. This really limited me to what i could have in the way of unique 'hero' assets but was something i could work with easily and was happy to accept the challenge.

After exproring plently of images of high rise buildings and rooftop gardens i settled on an industrial style building, not the highest but high none the less. And possibly with a rooftop appartment that the player could look down into giving it an edge on most basic rooftops.

The catch-up

I was just informed that we are to produce a blog for semesters 1 and 2 aswell as the FMP blog so excuse me while i try to catch you up on the past few weeks events.

Id like to start by saying, well, here i am in year 3. The uni experience is drawing to a close but hopefully not without a bang! I'm running a parallel blog to this which will cover FMP related posts which can be viewed here:

This blog (my continuation from the last two years) will cover until Christmas. It should present you with some exciting works from rooftop level design to vehicular modeling but first ill catch you up on what ive been getting on with over the summer. In August, Arena Net announced a year internship at their base in Seattle and being such a huge fan i thought this a perfect opportunity to try to get a foot in the games industry. However with the announcement being so late in the summer break i was unsure weather to apply as i wouldnt really have a choice in leaving uni that close to term time. But then i saw it as such a big thing to miss even their acknowledgement that i would go for it anyway. I then dedicated the remaining weeks of my holiday working solidly on the project brief set by ANet to see if i was deemed worthy.
Still feeling a little unprepared and overwhelmed i gave it my best shot because afterall it was practice of my 3D skills. The project was to produce a house or character, both with the orthographic views supplied along with the texture budget and tri count. Heres the brief:

These were my outcomes.

After the deadline i did hear back from them but not the news i was hoping for. In the end it was all practice and will hopefully help towards this year.