A rock

I have been working on a new project for a while now and all I really have to show for it are some half completed boulders:

rocksimple1.jpg
rocksimple2.jpg
They look like this after some critiques:
rocksimple3.jpg
I made some edges more defined and removed 170 polys.
I am using these as z-brush practice as I haven't really had to use it lately. I am finding it difficult to make the look as there are about 1.76 tutorials that touch on rock sculpting. If any one has some good advice it would be most appreciated.

These rocks are for a "jungle" environment for unreal 3 so there will be some moss, lichen and a more interesting texture (just the base rock texture on there now). I have quite a bit of reference for rocks from real life and games, but these are my favorite looking:

These were done by Brice Vandemoortele (sorry for not making that clear before:)
fmpRocksWip.jpg

Replies

  • PixelGoat
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    PixelGoat polycounter lvl 12
    Looking good.

    But I almost thought those rocks in the last pic where yours. :P
  • 408
    smoothing groups + hard edges?
  • ArYeS
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    ArYeS polycounter lvl 8
    Nice, i suggest you texture some cracks and grass on them, they would look much better.


    However.. did you see that tutorial about creating rocks? Anyone knows where to find it? I lost the link
  • dv8ix
    I love how polished the rocks are, They have a nice sense of realism' great work
  • jmchristopher
    This thread?
    http://boards.polycount.net/showthread.php?t=50160

    I went through it, it was helpful.

    I have to say though, there are not many tutorials on sculpting good looking rocks in zbrush, but I think I figured out some decent techniques. I will probably do some kind of write up once I get these things finalized.

    Thanks for the comments guys.
  • Renaud Galand
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    Renaud Galand polycounter lvl 14
    Good start. You really need to work more on your highpoly, though. Atm, it's really soft and doesn't look like convincing rocks, yet. If you pay attention to the image you linked below your personnal artwork, you'll notice hardedges (in the sculpt NOT in the lowpoly), different angle and variations in the faceted look, cracks, moss, etc.

    Also, I'd go on google image and type "rocks" instead of taking another artist's artwork as base reference for such asset. Hey it's a rock after all and rocks photos would help you alot more !

    As a side note, don't forget to really credit the artist who made your ref image. In this case :
    Artist > Brice Vandemoortele ( http://www.mentalwarp.com/~brice/ ).
    Project > Full Metal Planete² ( http://www.mentalwarp.com/~fmp/forum/ ).
  • jmchristopher
    Good start. You really need to work more on your highpoly, though. Atm, it's really soft and doesn't look like convincing rocks, yet. If you pay attention to the image you linked below your personnal artwork, you'll notice hardedges (in the sculpt NOT in the lowpoly), different angle and variations in the faceted look, cracks, moss, etc.

    Also, I'd go on google image and type "rocks" instead of taking another artist's artwork as base reference for such asset. Hey it's a rock after all and rocks photos would help you alot more !

    As a side note, don't forget to really credit the artist who made your ref image. In this case :
    Artist > Brice Vandemoortele ( http://www.mentalwarp.com/~brice/ ).
    Project > Full Metal Planete² ( http://www.mentalwarp.com/~fmp/forum/ ).

    Thanks

    I think I should mention a few other things. I really like how Brice's rocks turned out. I am using them as maybe a suggestion rather than reference. He got quite a bit out of the polys, so right now I am aiming to make the geometry better and make the base texture work well with it.

    I looked at that. It is helpful, but it is more of a hint than tutorial.

    Edit: Got this after a couple hours of messing around today.
    rocksimple4.jpg
    I am almost happy with it considering it is my first time doing a rock in zbrush.
    I have to say that it does quite have that hard rocky feel to it. I think I need to harden the edges a bit more and make some more jagged. I honestly looks to me like some one took some scones an glued them together. I figured a few things out and will start over and just try again.
  • jmchristopher
    Ok, here is a halfway decent one:
    The top is flat because players are supposed to be able to walk on it.
    rocksimple6.jpg
  • crazyfingers
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    crazyfingers polycounter lvl 10
    when it comes to rock type assets, a lot of time can be "wasted" in zbrush. The thing about rocks, is they have a very even similar texture throughout the object, it's not important to make specific areas of the rock unique, as you can see on the bottom example rocks.

    I would suggest making a tileable texture that looks very rockish. Good spec, good contrast, you can bust a very quick normal using xnormals. Bam texture's done. Now just focus on the geo.

    Make a cube, apply the texture to it. The texture will tile perfectly. Throw a meshsmooth on it, put maybe 2 iteration on it. You now have a perfect sphere rock.

    Now you can go in and augment the geo, you might start with a noise modifier and an FFD modifier just to get some character going.

    Now just polish it. And by polish i mean make it rigid. Start by simplifying the geo. Do edge loops a control + backspace in max to just nuke the polys you don't need. Start simple. DO NOT REMOVE EDGES THAT ARE UV EDGES

    Get some hard edges going and a rock form. Now you're going to excentuate the rock with the texture you see. Add cuts where there are dark ridges in the texture, reced those areas, a good way is to create a slice along dark lines and then extrude those edges inward. Careful not to strech the texture, you can tidy it up in the UV editor though.

    Once you have a nice rock going, do a second UV map in a new channel fitting all 6 sides of the original cube on one texture sheet. Do an abient bake to this new channel. You now have a rock. and you can make lots of new rocks out of this rock by augmenting the geo a bit, or simply rotating it. You can even get a fade effect for the rock making it lighter on top if you throw a second omni light that fades downward. Do more FFD modifiers and soft selects. They are amazingly powerful for assets like this.

    Hope this helps, i know it's a completely different workflow than you may be used to, but it's very efficient for getting the most out of your textures and time!
  • Mechadus
    Good tips here, and nice work on your new rocks - they look quite nice imo.

    @ crazyfingers - Dude, holy crap - I think you gave me a minor mental seizure lol So, what your basically doing Under the meshsmooth and noise and all, is you are cutting up a cube based on the diff map, messing with the form to taste, and by making sure not to delete uv edges, maintaining the original cubes UV's, which were perfect.... Thats very clever.

    Question tho - You FFD & noise, but you dont add an edit poly to the stack untill you want to start removing loops, correct? Like, you cant extrude or slice the mesh untill after you collapse it down right? Sorry for the cryptic question - Im gonna go play with your technique now :P

    -N!
  • Target_Renegade
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    Target_Renegade polycounter lvl 11
    Like it, I haven't done rocks since the unearthly challenge, and I sculpted then unwrapped, the whole rock faces. Foolishly. There are some tutorials around where you use the wrap tool in zbrush and create an infinite amount of tiled, rock wall. This might not be relevant. From what i've seen, with game engines, large cliffs/valleys are taken care of with the map editor.

    http://stephenjameson.com/tutorials/tiling-rock-tutorial/

    theres another tutorial i cant find, my pc went mental and i lost loads of cool bookmarks.
  • jmchristopher
    when it comes to rock type assets, a lot of time can be "wasted" in zbrush. The thing about rocks, is they have a very even similar texture throughout the object, it's not important to make specific areas of the rock unique, as you can see on the bottom example rocks.

    I would suggest making a tileable texture that looks very rockish. Good spec, good contrast, you can bust a very quick normal using xnormals. Bam texture's done. Now just focus on the geo.

    Make a cube, apply the texture to it. The texture will tile perfectly. Throw a meshsmooth on it, put maybe 2 iteration on it. You now have a perfect sphere rock.

    Now you can go in and augment the geo, you might start with a noise modifier and an FFD modifier just to get some character going.

    Now just polish it. And by polish i mean make it rigid. Start by simplifying the geo. Do edge loops a control + backspace in max to just nuke the polys you don't need. Start simple. DO NOT REMOVE EDGES THAT ARE UV EDGES

    Get some hard edges going and a rock form. Now you're going to excentuate the rock with the texture you see. Add cuts where there are dark ridges in the texture, reced those areas, a good way is to create a slice along dark lines and then extrude those edges inward. Careful not to strech the texture, you can tidy it up in the UV editor though.

    Once you have a nice rock going, do a second UV map in a new channel fitting all 6 sides of the original cube on one texture sheet. Do an abient bake to this new channel. You now have a rock. and you can make lots of new rocks out of this rock by augmenting the geo a bit, or simply rotating it. You can even get a fade effect for the rock making it lighter on top if you throw a second omni light that fades downward. Do more FFD modifiers and soft selects. They are amazingly powerful for assets like this.

    Hope this helps, i know it's a completely different workflow than you may be used to, but it's very efficient for getting the most out of your textures and time!

    Thats a really good idea. I am going to mess around with this. Your right, the faster the better, but one of the main reasons for doing it this way is just to get practice with the high poly to low poly workflow.

    Thanks. I will post what I come up with using this technique.
    Like it, I haven't done rocks since the unearthly challenge, and I sculpted then unwrapped, the whole rock faces. Foolishly. There are some tutorials around where you use the wrap tool in zbrush and create an infinite amount of tiled, rock wall. This might not be relevant. From what i've seen, with game engines, large cliffs/valleys are taken care of with the map editor.

    http://stephenjameson.com/tutorials/...rock-tutorial/

    theres another tutorial i cant find, my pc went mental and i lost loads of cool bookmarks.

    Also very good. I found this on my search for rock textures a little while ago. This mesh is supposed to be different from each side so that it can be repeated and just by rotating and scaling it a little it will yield all sorts of cliff variations. Kind of like this:
    (I know it looks crappy the normal map turned out a little funky)
    rocksimplerepeating.jpg
  • jmchristopher
    This is how they finally turned out.
    This took a little too long, but now that I have a few things figured out, I will make another one and see how long it takes me. I think they need a few smaller features and some more interesting cracks and fractures.
    Would any one be interested in a tutorial on this stuff?
    rocksimple7.jpg
    rocksimple7wire.jpg
  • Alec3d
    I never knew how interesting 3d rocks were to make (Im being serious if your wondering :P )
  • JasonLavoie
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    JasonLavoie polycounter lvl 12
    Very nice JM, i would be down for a quick tutorial, would love to see how you "get dem shapes".
  • ivan0v
    i made some rocks recentrly, ill try to put here my workflow from zbrush to unreal
  • [HP]
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    [HP] polycounter lvl 12
    Can we see the textures man?
    I like how the moss only exists on the indentations, it really makes the texture stand out on the model. downside of it, is that you can't use tillable textures if you want to have that effect on your rock, right?

    cheers
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