[UDK] Living Quarters

polycounter lvl 7
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mospheric polycounter lvl 7
*NEWEST UPDATE*

RTu7dac.jpg

I'm looking to learn as much about UDK as possible, so I'm working on an environment concept by James Chung.

wbSfWy6.jpg

With this concept, I am looking to improve what I know about material definition, UDK's material editor, UDK's lighting (basically new at it), and use of decals to break up repeating elements. I'm sure there are a lot of other areas I can improve upon too :D

For now, I have the blockout finished and started some basic texturing.

http://i.imgur.com/336CRLi.jpg

I'm looking forward to any comments or critiques that people have. Thanks!

Replies

  • Endfinity Jon
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    Endfinity Jon polycounter lvl 5
    Nice start here, like the block out, and really like the concept as well! Got a little lighting advice for you so you can get that started early.

    The illustration uses pretty bold framing as most of the nook is pretty dark forcing your eye into the bright parts of the room just beyond that. Try and see if you can pull back on the intensity of your bounces so that the front room gets darker. Either kill bounce numbers, darken your environment/ambient color, or lessen the bounce strength.

    Take a look at how the blue from the bed is having a little bit of rim lighting influence on some key foreground elements. You might have to cheat that effect using light exclusivity, but I think you would really benefit from having some soft blue hitting the edge of the table and the door threshold.

    Might want to consider making the back door more of a hallway as well. It's sort of unclear in the concept if it's a closed door or an open hallway but the way the light seems to be pouring out and into the room suggests it might be coming from down a hall, especially the way it's accenting some of the surfaces.

    I'll hang around if you have any questions and just to see how this cool piece turns out overall.

    Good luck to ya, this looks like fun,
    -Jon
  • mospheric
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    mospheric polycounter lvl 7
    Jon thanks! That's a big help, and I'm diving into lighting research. I see what you mean by cheating the light effects. I downloaded some environments from Polycount that people made available. I was surprised by the amount of lights present in a scene XD

    I do have a question though. I've seen environments made using lightmaps, and others made using dynamic lighting. How do you know when to use what method?
  • TheRealFroman
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    TheRealFroman polycounter lvl 4
    Lightmaps tend to be used when objects within a scene are static and not moving. Dynamic lighting I believe, is used when scene assets are moving around and you want to tie a lightsource to that particular object as it transitions around. :)

    Your blockout is really awesome too, keep adding detail, and keep at it ^^ I love the concept you have chosen
  • mospheric
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    mospheric polycounter lvl 7
    TheRealFroman - Yeah I knew that much. I was just confused because some examples, like Jordan Walker's Bathhouse, don't use lightmaps. Didn't know what the reasoning was besides pushing yourself to use only dynamic lighting.

    Spent the evening going over lighting through various videos and digging through other environments. Great learning experience! On top of that, I figured out about the post-process chain :P Now I feel like I can make adjustments to the overall look similar to color correcting a photo. I feel comfortable enough to tackle some of the props since the scene is more or less set up.

    http://i.imgur.com/FsoDrcn.jpg
  • Spoon
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    Spoon polycounter lvl 5
    Really nice concept, and super execution so far. This is going to be really good! :)
    mospheric wrote: »
    Didn't know what the reasoning was besides pushing yourself to use only dynamic lighting.

    Im an unsure why you say this. Dynamic lights are super expensive, so you really want lightmaps as much as possible in production. Obviously, if you are doing something personal, then you can do what you want, but I don't think it is pushing you more. Just depends on what you are learning :) Dynamics might teach you how to do lighting, which is great if that is what you want. But if you dont know how to make a mesh work perfectly with lightmaps, then there is something to learn there as well :) On the AAA I am currently working on, no asset is accepted if it is not perfectly lightmap friendly (among other things).
    My point is, do what you want to get a sexy result, but learn how to use lightmaps as it IS required of you :)
  • Endfinity Jon
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    Endfinity Jon polycounter lvl 5
    Much better already, the idea is really getting across. The only real thing I'm unsure of is the door at the entry of the room. It's really difficult to see what's going on in the concept. It could be shut or it could be open; there's some vivid blooming light coming from the left. I'd figure out what you want to try there, either open it up to a hall that you leak some light into the room or figure out a practical source that you could end up giving motivation to that source. It is rimming some of the geometry in the space, so keep that in mind.

    Self promotion alert: if you're new to lighting, I have a blog post about some basic techniques I use - http://jcricreate.blogspot.com/2013/03/tutorial-lighting-workflow-tips.html

    If all of your meshes are independent (not one giant scene mesh), you could try some mesh exclusivity to do some custom accent lighting. With GI, it's very hard to limit what your lights are influencing but by using the custom tags in the properties of the mesh and light, you can essentially marry a light to a mesh. Again, open the light properties, select "custom 1, 2, etc" and that light will then only effect meshes that have that same custom property selected. This is a good way to activate some of your surfaces with light that doesn't wash into the entire scene. You're already doing a decent job with this but as you start polishing, really consider some of the rim lighting and accenting that you want to do based on the concept.

    Finally, Spoon is right. Learning to use both a static/light-mapped solution as well as dynamic is the way to go. For this scene dynamic might not be necessary as you might not have character shadows that need to render in real time. It all depends on the needs of the scene. For our latest DDD open world title (that's right, eat your heart out AAA), we don't use lightmaps at all, everything is dynamic and deferred but only a few lights are at casting shadows/projecting textures, etc. Again, figuring out the needs of your scene is the most important, but most certainly learn all the fundamentals.

    Keep at it, can't wait to see it develop!
    -Jon
  • Spoon
  • mospheric
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    mospheric polycounter lvl 7
    Hey Jon! Your blog was the perfect thing to read! I think there are too many technical posts about lighting and not enough about the art of lighting. Also thanks for suggesting to use light channels! Definitely fixed some small errors and deleted extraneous lights.

    I didn't get as far as I'd like due to 4th of July, but I thought I'd update with the bit of lighting I did change and tweak. I could not resist reading more and trying to improve what I had. I feel pretty comfortable with it now. Will be proceeding to props and textures next!

    http://i.imgur.com/PIvpCS8.jpg
  • Endfinity Jon
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    Endfinity Jon polycounter lvl 5
    Hey! I really dig what you've got going here, really solid blockout and some good thinking in terms of lighting. I think you've pushed it nicely for a scene without any textures applied; my eye is moving through the space, and there's interest even in this simple form. When a scene reads this well without textures and pizazz, you're off to a really good start! I'll be looking forward to seeing how your materials effect the scene. Nice work so far!
  • mospheric
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    mospheric polycounter lvl 7
    Heyo! It's been a while since I posted XD I spent the time between working on the Polycount VG Remix contest and freelance work. I'm back on this environment though! I am determined to finish :P

    I've been working with the materials and creating shaders (I really hate the glass shader so be aware that it is temporary). I've also started working on props and getting some assets done. Again there are some that I'm not too happy about, so I'll probably redo those in the near future. I've also tweaked the lighting endlessly to get closer to what I want. I'll end up adjusting it more towards the end.

    On top of that, I cleaned up the thread a bit so there are image links for the older images. I'll try to maintain it without bloating it with files :P So here is my current progress!

    http://i.imgur.com/FkMlUnZ.jpg

    Next I'll be tackling the plants in the mid-ground before working on the bed and industrial equipment in the background.
  • mospheric
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    mospheric polycounter lvl 7
    Went through 3Dmotive's tutorials on foliage and knocked out the plants. Had some weird results in UDK, then realized that I wasn't importing the tangents/normals and letting UDK calculate them.

    http://i.imgur.com/io31abr.jpg

    I'll be starting on the bed and industrial equipment next. Getting close to finishing :P Then I can start the endless tweaking to get things just right.

    Any suggestions or comments to make the scene better will be appreciated! Thanks!
  • CharlieD
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    CharlieD Polycount Sponsor
    I forgot what the original looks like, but this is coming out really well. Keep it up.
  • Clark Coots
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    Clark Coots polycounter lvl 6
    looking nice. you using DX9 or DX11 in UDK? how you going about your reflections?
  • mospheric
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    mospheric polycounter lvl 7
    Coots7: I'm using DX9... I don't have a proper DX11 card yet :/ Right now they are just cubemaps. I actually have a cubemap for the foreground room and one for the midground.

    CharlieD: Thanks man! It's a bit tough right now with family visiting, but I'll be posting more soon!
  • mospheric
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    mospheric polycounter lvl 7
    It's been a while since I've posted about this :( Since then, I've acquired a DX11 card, finished the props, and adjusted the lighting. I'm going to spend my time doing any final tweaking before I dive into various post effects (LUT, screen scratches and bokeh effects, lens flares, and small particles).

    I'm hoping I can get some critiques before moving forward to the final post work. I don't think I've been using the real-time reflections as best as I could, so I'm going to be replacing those to get more out of them. I also need to hop back into DX9 and rebake my cubemaps. I'm new to DX11 features, so any suggestions would be appreciated!

    http://i.imgur.com/cRA5Nr5.jpg
  • Rurouni Strife
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    Rurouni Strife polycounter lvl 6
    Love the scene. I think the reflection on the seat on the left needs to be blurred more. It feels just a tad too reflective to me considering the material.

    Everything else really matches the concept super well. I personally want the tanks in the back to have a bit more detail.

    Do you have subsurface scattering on your plants? I highly suggest it, it makes a really huge difference (though you don't have a foliage heavy scene so you can get away with not adding it).
  • mospheric
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    mospheric polycounter lvl 7
    Thanks for the feedback Dan! I have transmission on the leaves, but I can look into SSS as well. I'll see about going back to the tanks to have more detail, really agree with you on that.

    Collecting critiques from everywhere and adding it to my task list. Hopefully I can update during the three day weekend!
  • Bigglesworth
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    Bigglesworth polycounter lvl 4
    I like this scene. I notice one thing: Sofa on the left. There is a door with porthole behind the sofa. I think this is a door, because it has an arrow to show which side door opens.
    Sofa does not block the door on the sketch. But in your realization it does.
  • Polygoblin
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    Polygoblin polycounter lvl 7
    Everything looks very good, it's nice to see more progress on this scene :) Only bits of advice I could add is the light bouncing through those green drinks to shine some feint caustics on the table. Another thing is the yellow light feels too bright, and needs to be toned down 15-20% to be in better harmony with the blue light. That may be my personal preference, but look it over.
  • marcobar
    I agree with Polygoblin about the yellow light, it looks a bit strong in the scene. I'd suggest making its falloff a little smaller, but maybe keeping the brightness as it is? That way it'll give the impression that the corridor beyond is still bright, but won't change the mood of the room too much.
  • Endfinity Jon
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    Endfinity Jon polycounter lvl 5
    This is looking cool, Josh!

    My biggest concern is saturation. Like value, saturation can pull the eye. This focal saturation should pull the eye to the bed and be strongest there. In your current iteration, the hallway competes a bit with the bed, and some of you other emissives/colors meet similar levels.

    Let's talk briefly about the bed, the light source above it seems to throw light in all directions. If you're using a point light there, make it a spot. Concerning directionality, it should be dissipating across the roof struts much quicker and instead throwing light downward toward the bed. In the concept, this soft blue light turns purply on the way down, not sure if you can supplement and additional light in, but I'd try it - it's a nice way to go from the blue light, to the red bed.

    I did a quick paintover - pretty minor changes:
    fHz9EnW.jpg

    Next I'd tone down the emissive quality of the foreground elements. The brightness pulls the eye, and they're not important. I'm my paintover and in the concept, you can feel some light coming from the surface so you might could try to add some very soft lights that highlight the planters and possibly the bench. Something subtle to sell the feeling of sourced light.

    The saturation of your sweet space beverages is a little high as well and they feel like they're glowing. Try to tone it down, and if you can, try to fake some scattered caustic light through the glass. This is apparent in the concept and I dabbed a hint of green below them in the paintover. Light might very well push the distance and bleed some of that green tint through the translucency of the liquid. Might be a cool touch.

    I desaturated the red in your booth chairs, thought they competed against the red of the bed. Downplay them a bit and let the interesting spec/reflection elements be the star there. In the concept they're nearly brown, and very soft at that.

    Finally I softened the intensity of the hallway light in relation to the bed light. You've really pushed that source and it looks nice, but if you wanted to stay a bit more true to the concept (and not detract from the bed), might be worth a shot. Very minor there.

    I gently blurred the foreground too, might be something to think about as you approach post. Speaking of post, getting the bed lighting to be more hazy and volumetric would be rad. You could try a custom placed fog volume at the bed and then have your directional bed lights have some subtle blooming rays that would sift through the haze a bit. Something to try.

    One day I'll stop writing novels and critique only using buzzwords.
    Love,
    -Jon
  • mospheric
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    mospheric polycounter lvl 7
    Between getting accepted as art director and planning a move to Raleigh, I've been swamped. Fortunately I found the time to finish this environment! While I could sit here and spend even more time on this, I'm going to take what I've learned and use it toward my next environment (in UE4!)

    Thanks everyone for the help!

    RTu7dac.jpg
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