#54 – January 23, 2022

From news this week: Unity bought Ziva Dynamics studio, new free project Stack’O’Bot for Unreal Engine 5, 6 new free character lighting presets for Unreal Engine 4, release of SpeedTree 9, patch to add FSR 1.0 to Unity URP.

Of interest: a report from the GDC about 2D animation in games, a story about the tricks of developing Street Fighter II, a post from the creators of Gremlins, Inc about the lessons learned from the failed launch of Spire Of Sorcery.

Updates/releases/news

Unity bought the studio Ziva Dynamics, which created simulation systems for faces

This is something like MetaHuman Creator from Epic Games. Together with the recently acquired Weta, Unity has cool tools in the hands appeared.

It will be interesting to see what this competition will lead to now.

New free project Stack’O’Bot released for Unreal Engine 5

More reasonsto try out the new version of the engine.

Blender roadmap for 2022

Main directions: new node-based texturing system, extending the existing geometry node system to support physics, completing Library Overrides and Application Templates.

SpeedTree 9 released

Both SpeedTree Cinema 9.0 and SpeedTree Games 9.0 receive a new set of tools for editing 3D trees and Mesh Converter for converting 3D scans of tree trunks and branches into native SpeedTree trees.

Other new features include USD export, HDRI lighting.

Patch released to add FSR 1.0 to Unity URP

This patch changes Unity URP and adds FSR 1.0. The current version targets URP 10.6.0 but can be used for other versions with minor changes.

Freebies/Giveaways/Bundles/Courses

6 New Free Character Lighting Presets for Unreal Engine 4

Presets created with the assistance of cinematographer Greg Fraser and now available for Unreal Engine 4.26 and 4.27. Fraser’s highly regarded works include Dune, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Zero Dark Thirty.

Free effects and textures on ActionVFX

ActionVFX Stock Effects Site released three new sets of free resources.

Substance 3D Designer Free Survival Kit for Beginners

Vincent Derosier released the first part of an introduction to Substance Designer.

Interesting articles/videos

2D animation in games

Great talk about 2d animation. For me, as a person far from animation and art, it’s just normal. Basic things are explained and typical mistakes are described.

I think even those who are directly involved in animation will find it useful.

Creating a Victorian Adventure in Maya, ZBrush and Substance

Character artist Mattia Migliorin wrote about The Lost Hunter project, explained how the elements of the Victorian era were created, and talked about what he learned at Vertex School.

Run, but do not stumble: how AI works in Death Stranding

Kojima Productions programmer Eric Johnson, who works on AI, gave a talk at GDC 2021, during which he talked about how artificial intelligence works in Death Stranding. Vladimir Semykin made decryption for DTF.

Street Fighter II Development Tricks

PatientZero translated an excellent article about game development.

The creators of Hotline Miami about design and heritage

The authors of the game talked about the development of the game and shared their feelings about the rather negative feedback on the release of the sequel.

Creating a steampunk machine gun in Fusion 360 and Substance 3D Painter

Maysam Hani showed the workflow of the Liquid Pump Machine Gun project, explained why Fusion 360 was chosen for modeling, and talked about the intricacies of creating guns for video games.

Types of contrast in illustration: from space to meaning

Smirnov School keep talking about how to highlight an object in an illustration or emphasize its properties.

Lessons learned from the failed launch of Spire Of Sorcery from the makers of Gremlins, Inc.

Sergey Klimov shared with your thoughts for a newsletter by Simon Carless, game findability expert and founder of GameDiscoverCo. app2top made a translation.

Magic secrets of puzzle games

In his 2019 GDC keynote, Brett Taylor of My Dog Zorro examines the art and science of puzzle game design through the lens of human cognition.

Setting up Blender 3D to work with scripts

A guide that makes it easier to work with code and scripts in Blender.

How an indie developer can find an artist for their game and save $500

Translation of a useful post from Reddit.

original article.

Character and clothing design in the style of the Soviet era

Shao Chen told about the workflow of WWII-inspired soldier models, their clothing, explained the transition from a prorence artist to a character artist, and talked about the skills he upgraded while studying at the Vertex School.

5 things to consider when localizing a new game: Bermuda Adventures and Inlingo case

Inlingo and Belka Games toldhow they organized the work on the translation of Bermuda Adventures. They shared how to set up the localization process from scratch and talked about 5 difficulties that they have already learned how to solve.

Reinforcement Learning in Action: Creating AI for Arena Combat for Blade & Soul

In a keynote from GDC 2019, the NCSOFT team shares their experience of working on artificial intelligence of pro-level opponents for 1v1 battles in the arena in Blade & Soul.

Technical game design. When they work with their hands

In this article, Artyom Volkov told in more detail what technical game design is, what tasks you will have to perform and how to become a technical game designer in general.

Designing an old jungle temple in ZBrush, Substance and UE5

Remy Vigno told about The Old Sanctuary project, shared the history of resource creation in ZBrush and Substance 3D Painter, and discussed lighting setup in Unreal Engine 5.

Drawing poses: 3 types of angles in the figure that will help you avoid mistakes

Artist Kenzo explains how angles can fix most of the problems with drawing motion lines.

Smirnov School chose from the main video.

How to fund your indie game

Pontus Mahler of the Global Top Round shares experience from the world of financing from accelerators to venture capital

Development of Six Ages, a strategy game that tells a story

In a 2019 GDC keynote, designer David Dunham explains how the pieces came together to create replayable emergent storytelling in Six Ages: Ride Like the Wind.

Chivalry 2 and a huge flow of players to the servers

CTO and integration manager told how the launch of Chivalry 2 went, talked about some of the technical challenges they faced, and explained how to work with such a large audience.

Unity 2021.2: what’s new in the search engine

Unity Developers told about innovations in the editor’s search system in the latest version of the engine.

Efficient use of GPU memory in modern games

Game performance depends not only on shaders, but also on the correct use of CPU and GPU memory. The talk describes how memory resources are currently accessed through DirectX 12 and the Vulkan API, including a new hardware feature: Smart Access Memory (Resizable BAR). The author gives specific recommendations for optimization. Slides can be downloaded from site.

Creating a vintage drill in ZBrush, Substance 3D Painter and Marmoset

Rahul Day told about the workflow of the Antique Hand Drill project, gjdtlfk about recreating the worn look of materials and shared the steps of texturing.

The most important space in games

The games are full of interesting places. But the only space that I think is so often thought of but rarely talked about is the space between the spawn point and the boss. The author of the video discussed how our mind copes with the different sizes of this very space.

2d environment reference

John Nesky did a reference table on how to design a 2d environment.

Automated testing of artificial intelligence in games

author showedhow to write a simple framework that will not only help you write tests, but also make it easier to debug problems.

Useful Functions for Game Designers – Lagrange Interpolation Polynomial

In science and technology, it is very common to interpolate between data points. One of the many ways to do this is Lagrange interpolation. The video shows how it works.

Interactive Graphics: 01 – Introduction

miscellanea

Tools made by 343 Industries for terrain work in Halo Infinite

Senior Environment Artist Mikael Nellfors shared some examples on ArtStation.

Sculpting Vi

The character artist continues his series of sculpting characters from Arcane in Blender.

Photorealistic British seaside pub in Unreal Engine 5

More info on ArtStation.

Analysis of visual effects from WandaVision

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