The Ancestor's Reach on going
When the Pandaren were under the enslavement of the Mogu, a place they hide around is on this today landscape. Where druidism has happened and moral were reconstructed. The place was old and rebuilt. Unfortunately, the Mogu has found a way to invade their tomb to harvest their ancestor's soul for power. The alliance and the horde then compete for the honor to stop their invasion.
This project was started with the purpose of exploring the workflow of World of Warcraft. Where all objects are handpainted with no normal maps. All I can rely on are albedo maps and a flat roughness map. All the texture are handpainted or generated. All models are very low poly but enhanced by hand painting.
Originally, I have no idea how this landscape is going to be. Without much concept art, I have decided to go straight into modeling the landscape and see what I can come up with. I imagine a pandaren Moonwell in the middle of an island that connect elsewhere, to a hiddle cave or abandoned temple packed with trees, bamboo and bushes. A simple block out was made to test the vision and more blocking will be made later as I develop more into the environment. Since all models are handpainted, it takes a great deal of time to texture them. I speed up my process with substance designer and image that I gather. To enhance a stylized look in a game environment, not only must the texture not generate too much noise, it is also a great deal with the geometry itself. The whole set up takes about a week with some model being done, it is also when I realize that I shouldn't. I should have just gone right into blocking.t
The texture I have been making are usually generated then handpainted, it speeds up the process and allows me to spend more time designing instead. Sometimes I will texture with them to allow myself to create something less repetitive. My challenge is to make sure all texture follows a hue flow that is natural.
To make sure that the engine remains very effectively run, one texture map are somtimes shared with a few models and none of them are bigger than 1024x1024. It challenges me to think about UV maps and ensure to pull the best resolution.
With desire to expand this environment. I have decided to go through planning. It is a mean to create a little bit more backstory and to add onto it. For that, I have decided to expand through foliages and I cannot believe that I haven't been making bamboo yet. My latest update consist of me trying out lighting techniques and have decided to go with just one light. After populating the environment with more foliage, the environment felt more natural. Now that it is full of greens, I must add more color to it to counter balance the center piece.
Water Spline Demo
Taken inspiration from Talardor and how they handle water. I have decided to create a water spline material to avoid any additional headache to model the water and UVing them, a way that I developed is to create a spline mesh and allow a current flow in the direction of the spline. The most important node that we will use is called "DistanceToNearestSurface" node. This node return RGB value of the closest static they can detect from each vertex.
I start by creating a 3 by 3 poly plane so that it can deform a little. Deformation is what allow me to get curves and dimensionality on the water.
We don't want it to stretch at X and Y. However, we need to make sure that it only transform in Z, up and down. This allows me to create something slightly more dimensional than flat. It also allows the plane to snap into the plane lower than the object we place. By dividing the number, we can get any number very close to 0. Then we transform it upward by a value that we can set. This allows the plane to always appear on top of any surfaces.
After that, we have to create a blueprint that takes in a spline mesh. A spline mesh deforms the object base on the spline we set. I used the tutorial :
It allows me to extend and extrude the planes from its point. These points are adjustable and because the plane snaps onto the surface it detects automatically, you get a result of a adjustable water pipeline.
28 tris, 2 tris
Dragon Turtle rock Statue
868 polys / 1642 tris 1024p x 1024p (Only Base Color)
Architecture around Pandaria are inspired by Eastern Architecture ranged from Japan from the Jade Forest to Mongolia In Kun Lai. While most temples are inspired by Chinese architecture. I do a lot of research on their architecture and their forms are geometrical. Although the scene is not going to be huge to portray a story, I have decided to ensure that I can build these architectures procedurally. I start up by modeling assets on Maya and ensure that the parts can be puzzled together. This allows me to potentially create more than one type of building. I have 2 types of building that I want to build that is a monster of the ancestor that pulls geometry to the extreme and a little tea place with a Mongolian and more twist to remind the story of the enslaved panda. Right now there are no storytelling on the scene but beauty, I will have to make sure I keep in mind the content.