Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Mock FMP

This task is to write a mock FMP outline, although the ideas themselves I have not decided whole heartily upon. I will produce technical specifications for a current generation (Xbox 360/PS3) The ideas themselves are based upon different games scenarios but would represent similar texture and polygon budgets to what I would be producing in the industry.

I have done some quick research of polygon counts for current generation titles and previous generations and these can be found in the links below;

For instance a character for GTA IV (2008)

Story Characters – 8-10,000 polygons with multiple 256×256/512×512 diffuse, specular and normal maps

NPCs – 3-4,000 polygons with multiple textures

Gran Turismo 5: Prologue (2007)

Cars - 200,000 polygons (interior + exterior)

This link shows how Forza Motorsport 4 (2011) has current polygon counts of 400,000-1,000,000

These links surprised me a little with just how massive some of the polygon counts are for just vehicles, obviously these are current generation racing games and being the focal point, more care and attention will be speared. I would say that reasonable triangle counts for most other games titles would be between 8-12k for un-interact able meshes and between 20-100k for other racing titles. Adding polygons can only show so much so it would be better for a portfolio to show a lower end of this scale as it is easier to add than take away. As for texture sheets it seems it’s entirely dependent on the title you would be working on. For instance a racing game would probably contain large and multiple 1024 texture sheets as for, non-playable vehicles they would quite often share texture space between multiple vehicles.

This link shows how current fps style weapons are modelled about 10,000 tris but obviously have LOD for pickups etc.

Another thing that surprised me a little was actually how small the textures used in the industry are. Smaller textures are less expensive and are often tiled to save memory. Polygon counts are not limitless but Unreal and Cry engine can quite happily handle several million polygons at a time and texture sheets and vertex counts are what slow the engines down. For instance the levels already in UDK are very triangle heavy and run completely fine. I will probably pay particular care to vertex counts on my modelling as this is what will set me apart from others in my modelling knowledge.

Project outline

I will produce an environment scene for a current generation game based on the Xbox 360/ PS3. I will aim to focus on environment work so that I can gain a better understanding of how to produce high quality, industry standard work. I will produce realistic assets and will allow myself generous triangle counts of 150-250k for the entire scene based on the fact that currently titles exceed this for most scenes but I will limit myself to using small texture sheets and maximise efficiency but using mask and multi-sub objects, to use the most of texture sheets. I will aim to try and control my total vertex count (the vertex count is dependent on triangle count, uvw space and smoothing groups). I will focus on producing efficient low-medium density modelling, as well as trying different shader and lighting setups. I am to better my knowledge for future projects and consider this both a portfolio test and personal test. I will use the unreal 3 engine (UDK), as well as 3dsMax, Photoshop, Crazy Bump, Z-brush, Mudbox and other plugins that might help me. I am to have a completed scene that is entirely playable at the end of the project schedule. I will produce concept work and white boxing, as well as trying to gain a online support on Polycount for critique. I will make tillable textures and try to maximise the reusable assets that I produce. I either want to produce a ship scene at sea/or docked as environment piece and try to stay away from character modelling. Or try and focus on hard surface modelling, of weapons and assets.

Based on this brief I would allow the following triangle counts for various models(the list is short and consist of just a few assets) ;

Ship Scene;
Lead Character-(Shipmaster) 10k 1x1024 2x256 (alpha)
NPC-(parrot)                     1.5k 1x512 (alpha)
Vehicle-(small ship)             5k 2x512
Environment-(large ship)      80k 5x512 2x256
Props-(crew sleeping bag)   500 1x256 (alpha)
        -(barrel)                             300 1x256
        -(cannon)                 1.5k 1x512

FPS scene;
Lead Character-(Player)       12k 2x1024
NPC-(enemy)                     1.5k 1x1024
Vehicle-(APC)                     20k 2x1024
Environment-(City Street)     80k 6x512 4x256 (alpha)
Props-(rubbish)                  300 1x512 (alpha)
        -(Tree)                     6k 2x256
        -(weapon(fps))                   10k 1x1024

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