Tutorials and Online Training Videos

Game Design: Character Development 1 Tutorial


This course was specifically designed to help demonstrate the many tools and techniques used within the 3D game and film industry in regards to character creation. The course begins with the very basics of setting ideal preference settings and creating a customized tool shelf for fast and efficient workflow. Author and 3D expert Michael Ingrassia then takes users through the very basic techniques of box modeling, UV layout and traditional texture map creation using Maya and Photoshop software. As the lessons progress, Michael begins to demonstrate much more advanced tools and techniques. Finally, he pushes Maya and Zbrush to it's breaking point generating a final character sculpted mesh to 33 million polygons before exporting the necessary maps and finalizing the low poly mesh back into Maya for exporting into a game engine. The various tools and techniques demonstrated here will certainly be beneficial to beginners as well as seasoned professionals alike. And his Zbrush texturing lessons alone make these videos worth the price. A DVD containing work files is included. To begin learning today, simply click on one of the movie links.

Introduction to Character Development

The Workflow Overview
Techniques & Processes Taught

Maya Navigation & Customization

Maya Quick Tour
Saving / Exporting & Setting Projects
Settings & Preferences
Displays & Navigation
Customizing the Tool Shelf
Installing Scripts & Plugins
Maya Hot Keys
Most Used Tools & Menus pt. 1
Most Used Tools & Menus pt. 2
Setting up a Modeling Template

Basic Modeling Techniques

Setting up the Weapon Template
Basic Box Modeling - Extruding Faces
Image Based Modeling pt. 1
Image Based Modeling pt. 2
Image Based Modeling pt. 3
Cylindrical Box Modeling pt. 1
Cylindrical Box Modeling pt. 2
Adding Further Details
Completing the Weapon Body
Adding the Bullet Cartridge
Adding the Grip Handle
Creating the Pump Handle
Adding the Trigger
Model Cleanup

Basic UV Layout

Intro to the UV Editor
Using Planar Projection Maps
Using Automatic Mapping
Creating Shells with the Move & Sew Tool
Checker Map Testing
UV Set Assembly
Cylindrical Projection Trick
Organizing the UV Layout
Creating the UV Snapshot

Basic Texturing

Blocking Out the Basic Color Map
Preparing the Basic Bump Map
Preparing Maps for Transferring
Using the Transfer Map Tool
Generating a New Color & Bump Map
Adding Dirt & Grunge Detail pt. 1
Adding Dirt & Grunge Detail pt. 2

Additional Map Creation

nVidia Normal Map with Photoshop Filter
Generating a Specular Map
Amb/Occ Shadow Map Creation
Overlaying the Amb/Occ Map
Texture Map Cleanup
Final Thoughts

Understanding ZBrush

Interface / Tools & Settings
Navigation & Importing Mesh
Divide / Crease & Sculpting pt. 1
Divide / Crease & Sculpting pt. 2
Brushes & Strokes
Using Masks
Using Alpha Masking Maps
Creating an Alpha Mask MAp
Using Polymesh & Subtools
Sculpting with Symmetry
Projection Master & ZApp Link

Character Modeling: Getting Started

Mesh & Templates Overview
First Stage - Blocking the Mesh
First Stage - The Arm
First Stage - The Hand
Second Stage - Adding Mesh Divisions
Third Stage - Attaching the Arm
Third Stage - Building the Boot
Extracting Mesh for Detail Modeling

Detailing the Body

Collar Detail
Chest & Back
Waist / Hips & Legs
Arms & Hands
Boots pt. 1
Boots pt. 2

Creating the Head

Head Modeling
Eye Cavity pt. 1
Eye Cavity pt. 2
Finishing the Face
Cranial Mesh
Adding the Neck
Creating the Ear pt. 1
Creating the Ear pt. 2
Detailing the Cap & Respirator
Finishing the Head

Mesh Prep & Advanced UV's

Understanding Subdivision
Subdividing the Arm
Unwrapping the Arm UVs pt. 1
Unwrapping the Arm UVs pt. 2
Head UVs - Unwrapping the Cap
Head UVs - Unwrapping the Face
Head UVs - Unwrapping the Respirator
Cleanup & Inspection

Character Sculpting in ZBrush

Creating the Head Alpha Mask
Creating the Skin Alpha Map
Sculpting Underlying Muscles
Skin Texture & Wrinkles
Detailing Eyebrows & Skullcap
Alpha Stamping Details
Adding a Scar with 3D Layers

Texture Painting

Using Polypaint
Flesh Temperature Zones
Detailing & Shadows
Cavity Painting
Burnishing & Highlights
Finishing Details & Final Thoughts

Maps & Assembly

Baking Polypaint to Textures
Generating Normals & Exporting Mesh
Shader Setup in Maya
Assembling Final Mesh

Conclusion & Credits

Course Wrap Up
About the Author


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