Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Feedback for Vinyl on EAE day

        I asked suggestions and comments for people who play our game for a while and got following response:

        1. Most people don't get the power system and they think power bar is not make sense for them on the UI. (Some suggestion want exchange position for power bar and song procession).
        2 Most people think that shaking on the pipe is awesome especially when it corresponding to music rhythm. However, some people had point out that shaking on the screen make them uncomfortable and dazzle.
       3  They also want our pipe to be different at some extend like it may turn right (Our game just turn left right now..) or boarding on ceiling.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Principle I have concluded

          It is the first time that I working as an artist in the team. So I did learn lots of valuable lessons on this semester.  
          1. It's important to communicate with team members especially producer or director who responsible for art part. 
          The best art asset is the one that fit for your game theme most. Make sure you got "key word" right. In other word, you need know what kinds of art style that the team really wanted through their description or picture. Double check art style that you figure out in your brain is the same one that director willing it to be. Because it is fact that different people have different understanding in same word and concept. Take our project "Vinyl" for instance. We have a meeting after IGF to discussion and changing our art style. On the meeting, they knock down a key word "Night Club" for new art asset. So I scratch out this skirt and high heel shoes for fitting the night club style. Because my understanding about girl (Character) in night club is equal to sexy and attracting. 

          However, it turns out that they want the night club environment not the character style. They want neon and shining light as night clue theme but a character which have decent suit fit for the boarding sports. (This conclusion is made after lots of communication) 

And finally I have balance their ideas and built out a character fit boarding, night club, and music style.

          2 It's hard to make everybody happy on one art asset, it may be a good idea to give them some tiny choices.
      That is a trick which I learn from my mentor Mark. I do remember that he always ask me to show the character to team with three detail changed, Like changing hair color, tattoo style, tattoo position or something else.  
       "People are wired. They always want this or that and......" "People are strange. They always have lots of different opinion and ideas". Above two conversations was given one by other artist in our team and the other was by my mentor. Yes, people have different of opinion about beauty and fairness. It's inevitable that someone in your team may dislike your work. But if your give them some choice to combine their preference. We can optimize negative opinions and comments at some extend.

          3 Get some buy off when you are working.
           It's easy to understand this one. You can avoid changing details or even the whole thing again and again. 

          4 Put you art assets on the game earlier.
         You may experience some unexpected problems or visual changing when you put you assets from art software to game.
          In my case, three big issues happened in this process. First time is when I totally done the mesh, I gave it to engineers to put it on the game then I found lots of detail that I working so hard on it cannot be seen on the screen. Like tattoo and fingernail:
    Second, when I finish two animations and gave them to Jason K (Lean from previous mistake I just try two and asking him to put it on see what it would like.) .....Just as my concern, since they have shrink down the character, it's hard to see some motion animations since I made them based on full size and real life motion style. So I have to rebuild some new animations that exaggerated a lot. 
   Last one is lots of formats detail and animation detail between Maya and Unity and stuff that I need working with engineer to solve it.
   All in all, the earlier you put you art asset in your game , the more time you get to solve unexpected problems and get know what kinds of  parts you need focus on working process. It is very important in working efficiency and making you model and animation perfect fit in game.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Technical artist road begin

         Thanks for my mentor professor Mark. I got a new road for experience game industry—technical artist. I found this area is promising and valuable, and most important it’s just fit me so much for the so many reasons.

I do like programming, but programming in C++ especially debugging is very painful for me. I like scripting which focus on function itself.  Same to art part, I don’t have any foundation knowledge on drawing, but I do enjoy visual effect on the screen generated by computer. 
I just feel I can sit in front of computer do modification in detail for character like sculpture, rigging constrain, painting the weight, animation for whole day. I may say that those learning experience is kinds of like playing video games indeed. Yeah~ when I get some free time, I prefer to open Maya or Z brush to do some funny thing now.  

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Particle Effect on Vinyl

My core concept was to express the feeling that Needle (main character) moves on very fast speed to corresponding to music mood which would be DJ in our design process.  So the high frequency music works together with flashing game scene to catch player’s attention and make them immerse in this music world. 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Summary of what I have learnt on graphic class

        At first, I want to say” Thank you very much” to John-Paul Ownby for giving us such nice class on this semester. I intend to go to class tonight for got some new information and choose option 1 to build a nice scene at first. But I have to back China to do internship at April 29. So option 3 seems good for me because I should finish all the Assignment as soon as possible and do some preparations for summer travel.

     For computer graphic and coding skill aspect, honestly speaking, I know nothing about computer graphic and DX11 before this class. So starting from a rectangle to a scene with shadow, transparency, light, environment map, translucent effect is truly a long but colorful road. I still remember the day that John explains the graphic pipeline in such an easy way but turn out to be a huge code structure (which has been proved a very expandable and nice frame right now.).

       My understanding of game graphic is a process that lots of vertexes that encased with position information, color information, texture UV, normal, tangent, bi_tagnet and other information we may not know from now on. These vertexes ordered by index buffer (with left-hand rule in DX) then sent to vertex shader to do some math problems like normalize, dot, matrix handle.(generally speaking, is a transition process model position between world position, then world position to view position). After that the vertex shader work out the data which fragment shader use it as input and do lots of magic work (for my understanding blending color in different way.) to show the scene on the screen.  And this also the reason why graphic hardware is such an amazing stuff—do magic work behind screen, under the code.

         Imitate Light is the most impressive creation for me compare to all of our assignment. I already pointed that out in older blog that how this inspired my mind.  This method solves the problem on different way, the way usually opposite to us   (at least me). I should keep in mind to try to solve problem on some amazing different way in daily life.  What is more, I think environment map, render target as Texture and translucent effect are all based on the method inherited from imitate light.

        Code structure is another critical part for me. From this class, I got deep understanding of I/O demanding and why expandable quality is important to a code frame.  We use “Scene” file to determine which Entities and Lights are in the scene. Then use “Entity” file to determine Mesh and Material. “Material” includes Effects and Texture. “Effects” file responsible for which shader we may use. As assignment became more and more complicated, I can feel how important to have this stuff to expand function.

      Besides class, I think JP has lots of excellent personality I should learn from. He demands people (including himself) to finish task as perfect as possible. CADE stuff is a good example. The time he spent to help me to solve this tiny problem is totally enough to just let me use whatever kinds of online driver. But he did this, he give me a detail email comments and link for asking help. No matter how classmates may complain about the assignment, he never canceled it out. “Just use more time to finish what you should finish and learn what should understanding”

       All in all, I am glad that I chose this class and it’s truly meaningful experience.  

Friday, April 12, 2013

Game Graphic 10

 This Assignment ask us to finish soft intersection. So we had to built depth pass first to store opaque bucket information first, then use it on soft intersection Effect. This time we name this information as "view depth texture". Similar to Assignment 9 except that we only output value to red channel. So D3DFMT_R16F texture  was used.......... Nothing beyond clear, preparing data for use, send data to shade for rendering.

Some detail to mention: Lots of trick parts in this assignment, especially to implement comparing current fragments' view depth with the previous view depth.  And remember normalize Z value at first=.=

Here is the result of soft intersection:

Depth Buffer:
Depth texture in red Channel: