Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Evolution of a character

A quick update to the Evil Genius Online thread (I really must get on and do that page!)
Here is Jet Chan. He was a character in the original game so I took the original mesh and skeleton and optimised the heck out of it. He actually ended up on a much simpler skeleton to the one on the left, but I'll go into that later. This was used in our Flash / Flare3D game.

We then needed 2D artwork for the menus where he interacts with you, the game user. To do this I made a whole new high resolution mesh, put him on a very complex skeleton with facial animation rig and ten twist bones per forearm etc. He was then put into twenty plus poses for approval by the powers that be. The top five were then given to a very talented paintover artist we used to have here called Randolph. He produced the finished image (on the right). This was done for the eight main characters. Some had only three paintovers. Penny, however, had ten images done this way.
Click the image for a larger version.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

XM655 The loudest Vulcan :-)

Had a marvelous time at Wellesbourne Wings and Wheels show this weekend.
As well as a stunning display from the Rolls Royce owned Spitfire and a bonkers display from the Eagle 2 Muscle Plane, the XM655 Maintenance & Preservation Society (proud member) did two slow taxi runs and two fast taxi runs. Thirty feet away from 84,000 lbs of thrust certainly is loud!
Then, at the end of the day the Vulcan to the Sky XH558 gave a wonderful display to close the show.
I will be adding a new page soon with some photos and videos. Here is a piccy to put you on 'til then.

Wellesbourne Airfield is under threat from a housing developer. If the airport closes there is no way to get XM655 out so she will have to be cut up and scrapped. Please don't let this happen, To paraphrase the "Heros" T.V. programme "Save the Vulcan - Save the World!"
Join the Wellesbourne matters organisation to save the airfield - it only costs 50p (larger donations gladly accepted) - Go on: You can afford it!

Monday, 1 June 2015

Maya is a pair of Jimmy Choo's

If 3D software is like a pair of shoes then to me, 3DS Max is like a pair of old trainers. You know, a bit ratty around the edges and it trips me up every now and then, but I know it. I am comfortable with it. Autodesk Maya is like a new pair of Jimmy Choo's. For some folk that means it will be perfect. For me though, it may be stylish, a bit bewitching and slightly aspirational, but it is also spikey and a bit uncomfortable. It is taking a bit of wearing in, but I'll get there; I always do.

This will be my sixth major piece of 3D software and to be honest, none of them are "perfect". Not Symbolics S-World; not Alias Power Animator; not Softimage; not Lightwave; not 3DStudio Max; and not Maya either.

All I want is some software that actually does what it claims it is about to do and not something where I have to randomly guess at the correct settings and already know where the hidden tick box is that makes it "work".
For an example I give you this tutorial.