Skaven Watchtower

polycounter lvl 14
Offline / Send Message
Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
Well, I figured this deserves it's own post.

It's a Skaven watchtower from Warhammer, I actually based it off of a scenery article on Games-Workshop's website.
Once I finish the watchtower I think I'm going to do this whole scene here.

I'm feeling really good, I'm back in the groove (once again). I'm doing all this Warhammer stuff to send to Mythic, I hope they like it wink.gif

well, time to quit my yacking and show the goods:

thumb_tower004.gif
thumb_skin004.gif

the blank area in the middle of the skin is reserved for some alpha mapped hay, chains, ropes, and other doodads I haven't thought of yet.

Replies

  • hawken
    Offline / Send Message
    hawken polycounter lvl 13
    I'm just guessing here but rocks and other assets would be better off in a seperate texturemap, right? so they can be used for other models. I'm sure if you show some sort of ability to optimise, they'll take notice. A seasoned modeller would opt for half that texture space and double up the repition. After all, who examines every rock and plank of wood to check if they are unique?

    (I hope I don't sound too confrontational, I don't mean to be)
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    That's it, I'm going to kick your ass!!
    lol, just kidding, don't worry, this is exactly the kind of stuff I want to hear.

    I think I get what your saying, I should approach texturing this like it was a level instead of a character? Should I do one tiling rock texture, one tiling wood texture and then skin the bell like I normally would?
  • Cubik
    Offline / Send Message
    Cubik greentooth
    The biggest problem I have with this is that the stone reads like stainless steel and galvinized aluminium to me. The white highlights looks like reflections instead of just bright spots.

    I'm with hawken on how you have used your texturespace. I think two tiling rock textures (one with the same dirt you have on the lower blocks) with a more chiseld look would be great.
  • Wells
    Offline / Send Message
    Wells polycounter lvl 14
    huh, i thought they were supposed to be metal. they'd look good if they were smile.gif

    usually the exposed interior sections of stone are much lighter. dull down those hotspots on the corners, too. unless the skaven polish their rocks to a high sheen?
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    d'oh, I was so proud of my rock texture too, oh well, it's going to be redone now anyway.

    I have a question about lightmaps, the Mythic job page list generating light maps as one of the responsibilities of the environmental modeler. All I can find on the net are references to lightmapping levels or coding tutorials.
  • ScoobyDoofus
    Offline / Send Message
    ScoobyDoofus polycounter lvl 14
    Generating Light maps may refer to lighting levels using the in-house level editor, or it may refer to baking quality lighting onto your 3D assets.
    Those are just my guesses.
  • Matabus
    Offline / Send Message
    Matabus polycounter lvl 14
    The light mapping Mythic is reffering to is of the light BAKING variety. You would generally be responsible for concepting out your building/asset/prop, modeling it, unwrapping it, painting your textures, and then baking down some good GI or directional light into the texture for use in the dark map slot of our proprietary shader.

    I think the model is spot on. You could probably get away with more polys for some good ole' fashioned detail (skaven droppings, more ornamental wood carvings, etc.) As far as the stone and the questions concerning the use of one page utilizing your unwrapped UVs: I would more than likely make one texture sheet at 512 of TRIMS only (one plank of dirty wood, one ornamental metal trim, one ornamental wood trim, one of wood with a metal top with screws in it) and then ANOTHER 512 sheet with JUST rock. You can paint in some scratches and chips and such and make it look good on any of the stone models you re-use it on. The bell would need to be unwrapped seperately for sure considering it's awkward shape. Environmental texturing is ALL about trim and the re-use of sheets (well for now anyways). GREAT start all things considered, Justin. smile.gif
  • almighty_gir
    Offline / Send Message
    almighty_gir sublime tool
    those rocks dont looks skaven enough, considdering all their buildings are either subteranian, or have materials from their underground burrows, they are too clean. also, a lot of their buildings are constructed with warpstone flecks (greenish glowing colours) for strength.
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    thanks Matabus! I'll get on those textures first thing in the morning (I work nights).

    Now the whole light baking thing, wouldn't I need to have the UVs laid out where nothing overlaps? Or is this something I shouldn't even worry about right now?

    almighty_gir: I'll try and dirty it up some more when I redo the textures. The pillar that the tower is built around is an existing ruin (the block resting next to it is the top of the pillar broken off) so it won't be totally skaven-ish but I do believe those rat bastards would filthy the place up a bit.
  • ScoobyDoofus
    Offline / Send Message
    ScoobyDoofus polycounter lvl 14
    [ QUOTE ]
    thanks Matabus! I'll get on those textures first thing in the morning (I work nights).

    Now the whole light baking thing, wouldn't I need to have the UVs laid out where nothing overlaps? Or is this something I shouldn't even worry about right now?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Possibly 2 sets of UV coordinates?
  • sinistergfx
    Offline / Send Message
    sinistergfx polycounter lvl 14
    It auto lays out the uvs in a seperate uv channel. Just like every other game engine that uses light mapping.
  • Matabus
    Offline / Send Message
    Matabus polycounter lvl 14
    [ QUOTE ]
    It auto lays out the uvs in a seperate uv channel. Just like every other game engine that uses light mapping.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Yeah, 2 seperate UV channels. One all layed out nice for your texture, the other for the light bake. The dark map channel is kinda like an overlay layer in PS.
  • KMan
    Mat- you are dumb. The dark map channel is like a multiply layer in photoshop. There is an overlay layer like channel, but is mostly used for detail textures.

    I will laugh at you at work tomorrow, k?

    Looks good so far, justin. You gonna apply here, or what? You could take my cube.
  • Matabus
    Offline / Send Message
    Matabus polycounter lvl 14
    Kman are we going to get married or what?

    Yeah, Justin ... if you get a job here, you can have K's cube. I'm subsequently hiring his hitman now (off of craig's list). He's got me down for a substantial inheritance. shocked.gif
  • cholden
    Offline / Send Message
    cholden polycounter lvl 13
    Some debris, more distorted wooden beams and planes on the ground to blend with a scene would add a lot of mileage. Personally, I'd like see the whole wooden support structure fatter around the rocks, and the base of the bell thicker as in the reference image.
  • almighty_gir
    Offline / Send Message
    almighty_gir sublime tool
    have you read any of the "slayer" books? particularly skavenslayer?

    the watchtower would have most likely been built by skavenslaves, who are perminently scared. and when skaven are scared, they "squirt the musk of fear" slaves also crap themselves.... so i imagine not much of the watchtower would be very clean :P
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    hehehe, listen to you two, invite me to the wedding, will ya? I'm going to apply as soon as I have some good stuff to show, I haven't created anything substantial in the last 2 years but I'm back in business now!! lookout!

    cholden: I plan on putting dirty hay, bones, turds, anything else I can think of throwing in there. I'll also thicken up some of those beams, there are looking a bit anaemic.

    almighty_gir: nope, I actually don't know much about the Skaven. I'm more familiar with the 40k universe and only just started getting into the fantasy one.

    Here's what I got done this morning:
    thumb_tower05.gif
    thumb_skwood01.gif
    thumb_skrock01.gif
    The textures need some more work, I whipped them up pretty quickly so I could lay out the UV's on the tower. I had some redundant areas in the wood originally so I redid the texture, I highlighted the unused space, I'm going to do a plank with rope rapped around it at intervals, might use that for the ladder planks.
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    spent a majority of today working on this but it looks like crap, meh :P
    thumb_skrock02.gif
    thumb_tower06.gif
  • MoP
    Offline / Send Message
    MoP polycounter lvl 14
    Coming along well. I'm not sure about the wooden planks getting lighter on the sides, it doesn't make much sense to me.
    A nice ambient occlusion or GI bake layer thrown on top of this texture at about 25-50% opacity would make a world of difference in making it seem more solid and massive, I think.

    Keep it up!
  • Matabus
    Offline / Send Message
    Matabus polycounter lvl 14
    That's what the final dark map light bake will be for. It's always a good thing to paint in as MUCH lighting as you can but with these types of textures that are being utilized ALL throughout the scene, it's not going to be possible to overlay any type of baked light INTO the texture. What MoP wants to achieve can be achieved when the dark map works it's magic.

    With that said, I do feel that the textures could use some more shadow love.
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    I'm scrapping the rock texture, I'm not happy with it, I'm going to try and recreate the original texture from my first post (but less metal looking) and I'm going to scrap the idea of the little skaven markings, I'm going to redo the carvings too, I'm hating it now :P

    MoP: yeah, the wood bites, I'm redoing that too
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    Ugh, had all four of my wisdom teeth removed, helped my mom move out and my brother move in annnnnd was without internet for a week. Phew, well, I got back into working on this:
    tried to work some shading in but still keep the texture reusable
    thumb_tower07.gif
    thumb_skrock03.gif
  • Mark Dygert
    I see nothing but massive improvements thumbup.gif keep up the great work and I hope you heal up P.D.Q.
  • Cubik
    Offline / Send Message
    Cubik greentooth
    Much, much better. Now it looks like stone and that face is a nice touch smile.gif.
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    thanks guys, I might redo the face, it doesn't look dwarfy enough (since the piller has a bit of a dwarvish look to it I'm going with the idea that it is ancient, dwarven ruins)

    I'll probably spend another day on the rock and then I'm done with it, I need to move on to the wood and the bell.
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    Gotta be quick, I gotta get ready for work!

    thumb_tower08.gif
  • PeteJ
    i think its looking really attractive!
    the wood textures seem a little grainy, but i think thats just the res, looks like a large image downsized.
    either way its coming on nicely! perhaps tone down that bell a bit though!
  • Rhinokey
    Offline / Send Message
    Rhinokey polycounter lvl 11
    yeah i would suggest smoothing the wood out more, make it read better drom difrent distances
  • almighty_gir
    Offline / Send Message
    almighty_gir sublime tool
    that bell is WAY too clean, grime it up, it needs moss, cracks, dirt, tarnishing... THAT is the skaven way!
  • MoP
    Offline / Send Message
    MoP polycounter lvl 14
    Nice work so far, I'm sure the bell is just a start, and you've hardly touched it - but it's far too bright and, well, orange. I always think Skaven are not clean creatures, they don't keep stuff in excellent repair... beaten brass or copper is an excellent look for their metal, kinda greenish and dingy.

    Here's a quick paintover I did for the effect I think would work best on the bell... bear in mind it's just my opinion, though smile.gif

    skaven.jpg

    Keep it up!
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    oh yeah, the bell is just started, I spent the morning tweaking the lighting on it.

    I had a hard time with the wood, it something I've never done before and I ended up relying on photo overlays more than I'd want to, my hand painted stuff ended up looking too world of warcraft cartoony. Does anyone have some good techniques for wood?

    thanks for all the tips and suggestions, it's really helped me out. I've noticed while working on these textures that they would work good for a few other models, so I'm going to whip up a dwarven way stone and a skaven screaming bell (or whatever the bell thing is called)
  • Bronco
    hey justin

    Im no exspert at this justin but ill try and help.

    I also do alot of wood stuff and do rely on alot of overlays t0o help me...the bit I find the hardest is making the grain looks realistic.

    So what ive done is gone out found some nice wood grain and taken afew pics with my digicam....then opened the file in PS,adjusted curves/levels as nessary to an exstreme amount..so you can then select colour range and pick the general shapes of the grain,copy and paste onto a new layer and I then I use this as my template....if your going for a cartoony style erase all the other artifacts you may have picked up and tidy up the grain lines and then you have a nice wood grain to work with.

    Hope this helps

    john
  • motives
    uhm you always got the Distort -> shear filter in PS to get some nice woodgrain
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    the epic saga continues...
    I tweaked the wood a tiny bit but I think I'll just have to redo the wood from scratch. Got the bell dirtied up, I still need to add bolts to the iron bands
    thumb_tower09.gif
  • poopinmymouth
    Offline / Send Message
    poopinmymouth polycounter lvl 14
    Nice progression. I'd like to see it with a basic light bake applied overtop to really see what it would look like in game. The scale right now isn't reading too well. I can't tell the size of the different things.

    Also it looks like it's supposed to be a haphazardly constructed apparatus, made out of whatever was available by a primitive race. Yet the boards consistent thickness and overall neatness of the entire thing make it read like it was made from a lumberyard with a bellmaker with all modern equipment. Some more varying thickness on the lumber, as well as more bends would help. If not all the boards were a standard length it would add to the illusion of ill repair as well. Having the wood that travels around the bell be a bit more crooked and variagated would work well too.

    Keep on trucking. If you get the gig at mythic, watch out for Kman, he is a fruit.
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    howdy, Maya decided to take a crap on me a few days ago, finally got it back up and running again. I figured out how to generate lightmaps from Jeff's awesome tutorial and I also figured out how to apply the texture inside of Maya, I'll make a tutorial out of that. The only problem: my website is down, argh!

    poop: I've bent, wiggled and generally tried to mess things up on this model but from a distance it doesn't really convey the haphazardness of it frown.gif, once again, if my website wasn't down I could show some close ups. Any suggestions?
  • poopinmymouth
    Offline / Send Message
    poopinmymouth polycounter lvl 14
    Larger scale damage? I think you should make the tweaks in one window that's zoomed in, and have another that's zoomed way out. Tweak in the zoomed in view till stuff becomes noticeable in the zoomed out view.

    Always keep game distance view in mind while modeling and texturing, and check frequently from that distance.
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    well, looks like my domain name expired and I registered it with my old host so I can't seem to re-register it, hopefully their tech support can help me out.

    Here's the model with a light bake and a simple ground thrown in.
    tower127lj.th.jpg
    I'm going to take another swing at the wood tomorrow and try to dirty this thing up.
  • Justin Meisse
    Offline / Send Message
    Justin Meisse polycounter lvl 14
    I went and took a bunch of photos of wooden boards laying around my yard. This thing is starting to drive me crazy so I think it's time to move on to something else.
    thumb_tower12.gif
  • MoP
    Offline / Send Message
    MoP polycounter lvl 14
    Turned out great, I'd say!
    Nice work smile.gif
Sign In or Register to comment.