Thanks to everyone who participated in the challenge. It was a great success and we couldn’t be happier with the entries. Great work everyone.
There has to be a 1st place who will scoop up the prizes but there are also 2nd and 3rd places. All winners will be reached in the next few days and prizes distributed.
Scott Homer Feedback
Initially my first impression was that the liberal use of colour in the scene is refreshing, however I struggled to read the scene as I felt that it is struggling compositionally. I believe this is due to a number of reasons, generally (in games) saturation, contrast and detail are used to direct the player’s eyes towards a central focal point. Here, there is no focal point, and saturation is turned up to 11 over the entire scene, with the white sand on the ground contrasting heavily with everything around it pulling the player’s eye away from the interesting areas of the scene. As a rule of thumb, your eye will always be drawn towards the brightest (or darkest) areas of a composition, so focussing your use of light, colour and details in places that are interesting is key to making a composition work.
This being said, I spent that little bit longer studying the diorama, and having had a chance to read more deeply into the area, I found myself finding the level of ambient story here intriguing, drawing me into the world that you have created. This in itself is a sign of a well constructed world, with small details like the posters really adding to this feeling of believability. I genuinely think that this piece would sit nicely in a game with very little work as technically it is very well put together. Separating this off into an individual piece has made it difficult to appreciate the quality of its construction. The use of textures is impressive, and the graphic design work is itself charming.
Overall I would say that this scene has some great potential, technically it’s very well put together, however a focal point and better use of composition would really make this piece come alive.
Tor Frick Feedback
Consistent style throughout the scene. Great use of color, and a good balance between details and simple surfaces. Very solid scene.
Scott Homer Feedback
My initial impression of this scene was great, I really like the Corinthian columns, and the use of zbrush to take the sharpness out of the corners of the stone structures really adds alot to the overall image. The quality of the roof area is fantastic, the work on the statues either side of the clock is really impressive. Generally I try and look at a scene as a big picture and dedicate my time to areas depending on their value to the scene, the roof area certainly looks the most polished part of the building which is unfortunate as it only covers a very small section of the entire image. I think your scene could benefit from less post processing as it generally tends to detract from an overall scene unless used very sparingly.
The use of texture space in the scene could benefit from more focus on reuse, you could have saved yourself alot of texture space by using tiling textures and blends in the areas that you wanted to localise damage. The textures up close look great, although I would advise in future dropping the alpha channel from the diffuse (these actually double the cost of a texture) and putting the AO into the blue channel of the specular texture.
Overall this is great piece, I think with more time put into making this game ready and some more focus on the scene as a whole you could really make this piece shine. Extra credit for the quality of your stone work!
Tor Frick Feedback
Overall a solid scene, architecture works well and some solid props, like the columns. The buildings textures look a bit flat, could have used more variation in them to bring the whole thing together further.
Scott Homer Feedback
Overall my first impression of this ‘slice’ was great, the quality of the overall picture is really good, It feels very believable and the glimmer off the dome really caught my attention (in a good way!). The modelling itself is very good, although there are a few jagged areas (around the doorway) which I think you could benefit from smoothing.
Having looked closely at your textures, I was disappointed to see that modularity and reuse hasn’t been taken into consideration when constructing the scene, this really undermines the overall piece, as I know that without some seriously big textures the up close the quality will suffer greatly. Taking that extra bit of time to create tiling textures for large wall spaces, and making modular, repeated detail pieces to break up these areas would definitely improve this entry as a whole. Reuse is a fundamental skill of an environment artist, as this not only helps the game run at 30/60fps, but it also reduces the amount of time it takes to construct a space. I would say that going forward you would benefit from reconstructing this scene using tiled pieces, allowing you to benefit from increased resolution across the scene. By breaking it down to reused, tiling areas you give yourself more scope to focus your time on polishing the scene with Zbrush, thus improving the quality of the slice with each brush stroke.
Overall a lovely scene that I think would visually fit nicely into a Sim City game; however the technical implementation of the scene has let it down.
Slice of Environment Diorama
Your brief is to create an environment diorama of a well known place. It could be a famous or interesting building from your hometown, a market scene from china, a scene from an old game re-imagined or a place in a film. The diorama should be like a cut-out of the environment. A slice of the scene. Not the entire building but a small portion of it created in detail. Think about reducing the slabs of a pavement or bricks on the edges, or showing the inside of the wall. Here are some example ideas ;