JEFF! A Knight Wizard.

polycounter lvl 10
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WipEout polycounter lvl 10
So I haven't shown any work in a long time, and with reason-- I haven't finished any in a long time! This model will mark the end of that bad habit, however.



He's based on a co-worker, I intended him to fit in with the Diablo III scene. Right now he sits in at 5041 triangles. Textures are two separate diffuse 512's, with one alpha-- no normals, no spec maps. I've been working on him in my spare time and he's almost done in my book. Needs tweaks to the textures, a little more work in the details and such. Any suggestions?

Send some C&C my way, I could use the feedback as this is to be a portfolio piece. Started out as a personal learning experience, as I've recently picked up Silo, then decided to fly with it as I haven't finished anything in recent months.


  • Slaught
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    Slaught polycounter lvl 12
    Really liking the model but the textures look you´ve just started textureing and this is the basic color layout.

    If you´re going for diffuse only you´ll need to paint in some shadows and highlights. folds, creases, damage, dirt...stuff like that.
    Also the materials need to be distinguishable.

    Keep it up and you´ll have a fine piece for your portfolio. :)
  • turpedo
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    turpedo polycounter lvl 9
    I think the texture is what is hurting this the most. It looks like you don't have an ambient occlusion baked in. I forgot what they are called but the mini man skirt(kilt?) looks like it has some UV stretching. I don't know if you're making us of a specular map or not but the armor and skin share the same specularity as well as the cloth. I would play around with the materials and get some nice contrast out of your textures(The weapon blade especially). This has great potential, just push that texture more.
  • renderhjs
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    renderhjs interpolator
    yup model looks very good, but the texture looks bad. Almost everything in the texture does not play or integrate well - it makes it look so unnatural or unbelievable.
    Some more blendings between the different shapes and color elements might do the trick but also perhaps a better harmony of the colors and perhaps some shading (wrinkles, folds, smal highlights) could help.
  • s0id3
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    s0id3 polycounter lvl 8
    Modeling is okay but the textures need a lot of work.
    I think the textures need wear and tear. It looks too perfectly clean, and there is no color variation. Add scratches, dirt, accented edges, and more ambient shading to the textures in general.
    At this point the textures look more like a base than anything else, really push it and this can be a good portfolio piece.
  • butt_sahib
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    butt_sahib polycounter
    Hai :D
    Will have to agree with everyone here. The thing its missing are shadows and highlights :)
    What it looks as of now, is that you baked a lighting map of the low poly and overlayed on the whole texture.
    Everything else is pretty excellent :)
  • WipEout
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    WipEout polycounter lvl 10
    Slaught: Thanks for the crits! Yeah, another learning bit for this guy is armor-- I rarely do anything remotely related to hard surface, lo-poly or not. That said, any suggestions where I might look for examples of hand-painted armor? I was checking out sites like MMO Champion and World of Raids for examples of armor sets and was following a WoW style when painting the maps, but shifted gears mid-painting and decided to go for DIII style.

    turpedo: I agree, the textures are the things I am least confident in with this guy. There is an AO baked in, but after rigging and posing, I saw how much it stretched and decided to drop its opacity a LOT so as to reduce the look of stretched UVs, especially around the skirt. I am going to turn it back up now, though, since as I was posing him I noticed that lack of AO as well.

    renderhjs: Thanks! Any suggestions for hand painting gold? That's what the yellow highlights are supposed to be, but it washed out a lot with tweaking the AO and such. I looked into a lot of color theory and complimentary colors (orange compliments blue, gold is a shade of orange, blah blah blah) , but again, that gold washed out quite a bit under Marmosets lights and my messing with the layers for other tweaks.

    S0id3: I agree on the wear & tear: I had added some but the small cuts just didn't read well at all. Again, was using MMO Champion's armor set images as ref, but I was way too shy with the gashes and cuts you might see on a well-used plate of armor.

    butt_sahib: Thanks for the compliment! I definitely need to up the AO again, but also hand-paint the shadows and such (particularly on the armor pieces) where there is no polygonal detail. I certainly did bake an AO then overlay it on the texture, but I also went in and hand painted (dodge & burned, actually) shadows and highlights. That didn't work well for the gold bits, so I tried hand painting gold shadows, but obviously didn't push them far enough.

    Thanks again for the crits, all! Please, folks, any more suggestions or tips would be greatly appreciated, as I want to move on to a new character very very soon. Like next weekend :P
  • Slaught
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    Slaught polycounter lvl 12
    This thread from Shinsen has some great painted armor in it.

    You could also check out b1ll´s stuff here:
  • Mcejn
    I really think you should have spent the extra polys on the axe to really round it out. Everyone else pretty much has you covered, so my only other comment is that there is no real depth or texture (feel) to it, it's all really flat. Please try and check out sama.van's thread:, he's got a lot of good going on with his textures.
  • WipEout
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    WipEout polycounter lvl 10
    So here's an update (finally):




    I can see where I could improve, as in the weapon now needs a few more sharp details and other such stuff, but I think I'm going to call this one finished for now. I'm taking way too long on my models, I need to bulk up the 'folio.

    So what do you guys think? Does the metal look like metal now? I'll be coming back to him if necessary changes seem quick enough to complete, but I need to work on another character before I go insane.

    Thanks for all the help, and C&C is always welcomed!
  • Joopson
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    Joopson Polycount Sponsor
    The eye should really have some shine/wetness to it. That would add a lot of life to this piece in my opinion
  • killingpeople
    i don't know why "knight wizard" made you think plaid
  • Colemerson
    Noticeable improvement over the original. I'm going to have to agree with the plaid kilt though. It doesn't fit with the rest of the character design. Also I'm not sure why you changed the axe/staff as I think the first version is more visually interesting although maybe slightly busy. I noticed there is nothing connecting the front armor leg piece to his waist or the other armor parts. You could add some leather straps or more armor along the waist area. Anyways keep it coming.
  • ZennDavid
    Great work ! , the second texture pass is looking much better and the model looks like it was a lot of fun !. i am a bit confused about the history of the character . Before making your next texture pass , think about who the character is , and what he has been through . Based on what i see ( without textures ) he looks like an aged warrior or commander . If that is the goal , get dirty with your textures . Even out of the blacksmith, weapons / armor are never flawless . Try adding more dirt / blood / dents / fraying / etc , to your clothing , think of all its history . If you wanted to push textures even more , give him darker eyes and stronger crows feet ( since battle takes a large toll on physical/mental health. Keep up the good work ! its coming along very nicely :)
  • woogity
    hey there man, dont mind the plaid, tho right now it is kinda random, he could use more of that element to make it seem more appropriate, also he says "knight" alot right now ( that and scotsman) but i dont realy get alot of wizard escept in that he has the staff. i think he could use a little less armor in some places and maybe some sort of jewlery. also wizards almost always have a spell book or buncha scrolls with them. i think the weapon design is decent, but it needs more love, very plain atm compared to the armor pieces. i think he would get alot more wizard out of it with a longer skirt piece and some scrolls, or pots on his belt, and a bit more of a sleeve on his left arm.

    think a bit more bout the characters background aside from the setting he is in, think about his past and goals and it should help come up with some awesome accessories and details.

  • Piotr
    Looks good. Metal doesn't look like metal yet unfortunatelly. Lacks speculars. Doing more than one model at once is good idea. Having some break and coming back to it every few days gives you more distance. I usually cycle through 3 models at once. Very often when I come back after a week I instantly see what is wrong.
  • WipEout
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    WipEout polycounter lvl 10
    Joopson: oops! Thanks for reminding me :P Completely blanked on finishing the eye.

    killingpeople: Yeah, the plaid-- I wanted to make the skirt more of a fabric instead of a plain color. Thought red with blue would unify the armor and cape colors, but instead I should probably drop the busy plaid and give the red some kind of trim like the cape.

    Colemerson: good call on the armor straps. I kept telling myself after the fact that I forgot to include those (I think I was too far over budget at the time, figured no one would notice), then I got lazy. I shouldn't get lazy on a potential portfolio piece. I'm sure I can add 1 strap and duplicate it over the model (with one spot on the texture sheet too).

    ZennDavid: To be honest, I hadn't really given him too much of a story (if one at all, really), which is something I know I need to work on for my characters in general. Basically, he is based off of a coworker, after we joked about how he should be a goofy wizard/warrior in WoW. I'm doing "badass" poses for the portfolio, will do the "goofy" poses for the personal project.

    Poitr: Maybe I'll switch some layers around, see how that turns out. I had painted in all the highlights much brighter than last time, but I feel like the AO is just clouding/covering them up.

    Thanks all for the awesome crits and props! I'm getting over my fear of sucking at this (greatly fueled by constant developers' rejections), so the next model is going to be even faster & fun as hell!
  • crazyfingers
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    crazyfingers polycounter lvl 9
    He looks a little surprised for a lone warrior, you might consider lowering his center brow. If you select between his eyes with a soft select and move down the geo down it should do the trick. Here's how it looked with a quick photoshop warp:


    I also did a curves edit on the skin to get a bit more of a range, you can toy with this too if you do a curves edit, mask everything but the skin and adjust the RGB, R, B, G settings. Very handy tool. Very powerful too so be subtle with adjustments.

    Also a quick gradient overlay on the front cloth covering the hips would help a bit. Darken it at the bottem and brighten it at the top.

    Good luck, i share a name with this dude so don't F it up! jk ;)
  • Wells
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    Wells polycounter lvl 13
    if your'e not going to use a spec map, you need some highlights on the trim of the metal, and on the sharp corners created by the scratches. currently it's all very softly lit in the center and not convincingly metallic.

    all of your colors are very monochromatic - you're getting no real color modulation, just sticking with a base and adding darker or lighter for shadow/highlight. this ends up creating unconvincing textures. get some other tones in there.

    the design on the cape isn't deformed at all by the folds it is on.

    i like crazyfingers' ideas
  • WipEout
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    WipEout polycounter lvl 10
    stepped away for a while to work on another character, but decided to try to finish him with your most recent suggestions taken into account.




    crazyfingers: I lowered the brow (he did have a perplexed look on his face before), added a bit more color variation to his skin tones (more blues, reds, greens, yellows) than before, which darkened the shadows a bit as well in the process-- does that look better?

    Sectaurs: thanks for the tips. I brought out the highlights more (moved the damage layer above the AO layer-- what do you think?). I also skewed the cape design to fit in better with the painted-in folds of the cape, thanks for the suggestion.

    Looking at the pose, though, I still see some bits that could be pushed. The trim still looks bland and non-reflective as Sectuars pointed out, I think bringing out the trim from under the AO as well as the damage would probably do the trick. And I need to add some trim to the skirt similar to the cape to ties the two pieces of clothing together more.

    Later, though, because I want to remodel my website.

    Again, thanks for the crits, and please keep them coming.
  • Swizzle
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    Swizzle polycounter lvl 10
    He's looking much better than he did when you started the thread, but there's still some funny stuff going on with the armor texture. Certain parts are looking dull and flat, so ramping up the contrast a tad and giving the gold some more juicy highlights and deeper shadows would go a long way towards livening things up.
  • renderhjs
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    renderhjs interpolator
    the textures look pale and so does the presentation color wise. Here is a makeover with partly of what Swizzle said as well:
    basically more contrast and color variation to support more depth and contrast from concave to convex and front to back. Like the cape that could use some shadows or slight color variation on the back side.
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