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Create a Game Character: Jouster - part 3

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Date Added: 13th August 2013
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This exclusive, free tutorial series will explore game character creation workflow. I will cover my entire process of taking a concept through to the final game asset.

You can see how the concept was designed by Marc Brunet on LayerPaint in his two-part tutorial.

The tutorials are intended for intermediate users with some knowledge of the software being used, plus a base understanding of character art workflow.

During this tutorial series I will cover:

1. Blocking in the proportions
2. Sculpting the face
3. Sculpting the armor
4. Creating the armor meshes
5. Finalizing the details
6. Creating the low poly model
7. UV unwrapping and texture baking
8. Texturing the armor
9. Texturing the face
10. Model presentation in Marmoset

I hope you'll find this series of helpful in some way and if you have any questions feel free to contact me. Let's get started!

Block in the armor

Step 1: Torso

In this section of the tutorial we'll be covering blocking in the armor suit. At this stage we aren't going to worry about making the mesh super clean; it's all about roughing in the main shapes. We'll be using these meshes to create the final, cleaner meshes later on.

Duplicate the body SubTool (SubTool > Duplicate), then hide the legs and arms (Ctrl + Shift + drag) and delete hidden (Geometry > Modify Topology > Del Hidden). This will be used as our base mesh for blocking in the armor around the torso.

In order to create the shapes we'll need from this mesh, we'll take advantage of the DynaMesh feature. With the SubTool selected, click on DynaMesh (Geometry > Dynamesh > Dynamesh). Adjust the DynaMesh resolution to suit what you need. I use a resolution of around 256 and while sculpting, I have Blur set to 1 or 0 and ReProjected Dynamesh turned on.

Use the Clay and Move brushes to begin to create the rough shapes of the torso armor. Concentrate on the silhouette and larger forms before cutting in any details. You will need to re-DynaMesh (Ctrl + drag on the document) regularly to maintain good polygon distribution.

Use the DamStandard brush to create defining cuts and separation between different pieces of armor. Once the main areas have been blocked in, use a combination of the Smooth and hPolish brushes to smooth out the armor surfaces.


Pro tip: Alternative Smoothing

When using DynaMesh you will come across poles - where a vertex is shared between 3 or more edges - in the topology. Using the normal Smoothing brush (Shift + click) can still leave visible imperfections in the mesh. However, you can use an alternative Smoothing mode to help eliminate those imperfections. Simply hold Shift and start to smooth, then let go of Shift while still smoothing the mesh and ZBrush will switch the alternative Smoothing mode.

Step 2: Widen the stance

In order to allow for easier sculpting of the leg armor, we'll need to widen the leg position. Using the Mask Lasso tool, mask the legs and then invert the mask. Using the Rotate (R) Transpose Tool, draw out a transpose line from the hips down to the feet and then rotate the legs out slightly.


continued on next page >

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