Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Modelling Workflow

Firstly, sorry about my sloppy use of English. I'm very tired right now. If you need me to clarify any of these points please let me know what's confusing you in the comments section.
  • Please focus on the assets that actually do exist in the Queens building for the time being. The cultist assets shouldn't be approached until we have a clearer art direction. It would be a nightmare if we all envisioned the cultist aesthetics in different ways and ended up with an inharmonious nightmare of conflicting asset styles. Further concepting of the cult further down the line will help us to unify styles and envisionments.
  • Set your units to UUS (unreal units). This can be done by going to customize > units setup > custom, and then enter a value of 2.54 for the CM parameter. Then going to tools > grids and snaps > grid and snap settings > home grid and setting the grid size to 16 will make it such that one grid unit represents 1 foot. 95 UUS or 6 grid units will thereafter represent average human height.
  • Ensure that all pivot points are centred to 0, 0, 0 and meshes are positioned such that they sit ontop of their pivots. The except to this is for meshes that are attached to walls, which should instead have the mesh make contact with the pivot point where the object would meet the wall.
  • For static meshes, delete any hidden faces that the player would never see.
  • Ensure all meshes are without floating verts and contain no Ngons.
  • Tris should only be when absolutely nessissary.
  • Model collision meshes such that they have the lowest possible complexity
  • As for naming assets a specific naming convention should be used:
 Collision meshes should include the prefix UCX_ followed by the asset name in lowercase. Seperate words should be joined together without a space with the first letter of any word preceeding the first being upper case. For example: UCX_cardboardBox

  • Please do not texture yet. We need all textures to harmonise with one anouther and will use techniques such as ambient occulsion baking that require for texturing to occur further along the workflow.
  • All models should be UV unwrapped efficiently with very small gaps between UV shells.


  1. Hey Max, just so I know- do we add collision meshes in Studio Max or is that in Unreal? Also, can you suggest a file name for assets (In my case I've just done the circular light)- would that be UCX_circularLight or something else?

    I know nothing.

  2. Hey, Andy. Collision meshes are made in Max. Once you've modelled your asset, duplicate it such that both meshes reside in the same file and then add the prefix 'UCX_'. The collision mesh should be a highly simplified version of the original mesh that captures its fundamental shape.

    Collision meshes aren't necessary for all assets. Unreal engine can generate a simple box collision mesh for assets that don't play a core role in the physics engine. A circular light would be an example of an asset not needing a Max collision mesh; the corridor's railings, however, would be an example of where a collision mesh would be very useful. Use your own intuition to determine what requires a collision mesh and what doesn't.

    Name the assets as they appear in the Google Docs spreadsheet. For example, 'debrisBlockages_02' should have the object name 'debrisBlockages_02' and its collision mesh should have the object name 'UCX_debrisBlockages_02'.

    Hope that makes sense. Let me know if I've not explained anything properly.

  3. Damn, that was quick. Cheers man- I'll look into it more tomorrow. I guess the stair way will be a lot trickier than I anticipated... I've only managed to model and unwrap the light so far (Chris' sculpting ate up too much time) so I might have to throw a sickie off work tomorrow and crack on... oh, and don't worry- I don't mind throwing sickies now and then :)

  4. To further clarify, assets that the user interacts with and is likely to collide with are the ones requiring a collision mesh in Max. Both the normal mesh and the collision mesh should be saved in the same max file (you can hide the collision mesh if it gets in the way of things).

  5. If you would rather exchange the staircase for a different asset please say so. No one will judge you or think any the less of you if you're finding it confusing. It is indeed a very demanding asset to model.

  6. Cheers man, I'll have a go at it- I may as well because I have the measurements here (well, some of them). I'll let you know if I'm having an utter fail time with it and maybe trade ya.

    Thanks again!