In Art Spotlight, we invite Sketchfab artists to talk about one of their designs.
My name is Sebastian Irmer. I’m 28 years old and I’m living in Germany. I’ve studied applied media management at UAS Mittweida. After receiving my Bachelor of Arts degree I’ve been working as a 3D artist in Berlin. My passion for games began with the “SNES era” and since then I’ve wanted to create games.
I’m currently working at a company with the lovely name “sMeet Communications GmbH”, working on a game called Metamons. I’m responsible for creating the environments and assets of the game. Metamons has got special technical requirements as the polycap is about 10k and the texture size is about 2k. Every asset and the stage itself must fit on a single 2k map. There is no real time lighting or shading I can use for this game which means diffuse map only. Therefore I’ve created a technique, which allows me to bake effects like light, shadow, gloss, reflections, ambient occlusion and global illumination into the texture. This proves beneficial since the game runs with a high frame rate by 1080p on browsers and mobile devices with nice but faked light effects.
I start with a concept that is provided by our lead artist Ersin Soyer. He defines the size, the details, the proportions and the overall look of the stage. We have to keep in mind, that there will be two monsters fighting each other in the middle of the stage. That is why we have to care for plenty of space for them in order to interact.
The modeling is really straightforward. I start with rough shapes and create more details by inserting edge loops. I try to go as low poly as possible, since the game has to run on browser and mobile devices. That means that I have to delete all faces, that cannot be seen by the user. After finishing the meshes, I insert a basic lightning setup to get some feeling and tone to the stage.
The unwrapping is critical. Since I want to bake the texture in the final step, I have to make sure, that the unwrapping is as clean as possible. All edges have to be neat and straight on the uv layout in order to avoid disorders and artifacts. Assets near to the player should get more texture space to provide more details.
After unwrapping the stage I start with some simple bakes like ambient occlusion, falloff and gloss to get a feeling of depth and haptic. I start with a rough coloring, using the ambient occlusion map as a guidance to see, where assets make contact with the ground and with each other. I use some footage of the Switzerland Alps to get the color scheme right. Blue green and brown in a light manner will do the job here. Its important to bring a variety of values to the color. For example, wood is not only brownish in this stage. It contains traces of yellow and green to make it more vibrant. After setting the base colors I start to draw more details until I’m pleased with the result.
When the base texture is done, I start with some test renderings to see how the stage will look at the end. When I’m happy with the result, I start the final bake. The bake includes light, shadow and global illumination combined with the texture. I use a minimum sampling rate of 6 to avoid artifacts . The baking takes several hours to a full day to complete. After the bake is done, I start with the post production in order to correct details and color values of the texture.
The last thing to do is implementing the stage into our engine. Here I add some particle effects and an animation for the gondola in the background.
The final result can be seen here:
If you want to experience Metamons by yourself, just visit us at metamons.com.
Now you know how its done. The work flow is quite unusual regarding the baking part. Nonetheless the result can be awesome. It feels pretty good to see how many people liked this stage and I’m honored to be a small part of this Blog. Sketchfab is a great way to share cool 3D Art with the community and colleagues and I’m really glad I’ve found you guys.