Dhruva completes two decades of being in business! A huge thanks to all our partners, to our family of artists who bring ideas to life through art, and to everyone who worked together in helping us make it this far. 20 years of video games… and we still can’t get enough of it!
Exploring Next Gen Techniques in Character Creation
The aim of the project was to explore next generation techniques in order to ready ourselves for the new wave of consoles. We chose to create an average female civilian. We wanted it to look like someone you could walk past on the street.
The first stage was producing an illustration for our modelers to work from. Our 2D artists use a mix of real world references and inspiration to create a unique but believable character.
The Next stage was to start Sculpting! Using Zbrush we created a high poly 3D mesh. Since we wanted to make this as realistic as possible, it was necessary to study the face and add detail right down to the pores on her face. A strong understanding of fabric folds and physics was also required to realistically simulate the clothes.
The finished sculpt looked great but it would never run in a real time game engine. We built a second lower polygon model around the sculpt. The hair and eyelashes were blocked out with strips of polygons. We gave ourselves a large polygon budget- Maxing out at 60,000 triangles. We really wanted to achieve a quality next gen model with this! The lighting information and Normal Map were then baked from the high poly sculpt to the low poly model, giving us the detail of the sculpt, but the efficiency of a low poly model.
Using the lighting information and traditional 2D painting skills, we created the diffuse texture. The aim here was to paint the model as if it was uniformly lit from all directions. This is the stage that really makes the model come to life. Metallicity, specular roughness, ambient occlusion and sub-dermis maps were all used to create highly detailed surface shaders within the Marmoset Toolbag.
Now that the model has been created we can start animating. A rig has to be created and applied to the mesh. A rig is like the bones of the model, sort of like the metal armatures made to control stop motion models. Once this is in place, controls are made which we use to move the bones and animate the character.