Here are a few hints as to how to keep good and clean topology:
- Try to keep the mesh in similar size quads. At the same time feel free to use triangles. Actually we'll convert our mesh to triangles for texturing and rendering because a triangle is the true form of a polygon and game engines see only triangles. Quads are just for human comfort.
- Every polygon should work for silhouette - don't add too many polygons.
- Add additional loops to bending areas (elbows, knees).
- Some polygons can be extruded in new objects later. Place edges loops in some places as a future base for extruding a new object. For example, if I know that a specific polygon row is going to be extruded as a belt, I make sure that the thickness of the base row will be the same as the thickness of the belt.
Here are the tools that I used to create the model:
- Soft Selection. Press B and move the sub-components. To adjust the influence hold B + the left mouse button and move the area.
- Split Polygon tool and Split Selected Edge Ring. These are in the Edit Mesh menu or in the Shift + right-click menu. It's much better to bind it to your own hot keys. These tools add new edges.
- Sculpt Geometry tools (Mesh menu). This works like some of the brushes in ZBrush. The most commonly used is the Relax tool. I like it a lot because it's a quick way to make your topology smooth and consistent (Fig.17).
When the rough body base was done I started to add new details, like the pants and sleeves. To do this you need to refer back to the concept (Fig.18).
The next step is extruding the new details. As I mentioned before when talking about the topology, try to place edge loops in places where you're going to extrude new details. On the picture you can see what I mean (Fig.19).
First, you need to duplicate the right part of the body and select the belt faces. Next invert the selection (press Shift + the left mouse button and select all of the model using the Marquee tool). Delete selected polygons and slightly scale the belt and extrude it. I also assigned another material and made a duplicate special. I added new details and used Snap to Points (press V) to attach the belt to the body even if they are separate objects. This is the most common type of snapping and you'll use it all the time (Fig.20).