Mars - WIP shot

Work In Progress / 08 November 2021

So, this is what I've been working on lately, in UE5. None of these assets are mine. All of these are from the market place; the rover, astronaut, small sphere drone, the cliffs, particle effects, etc. I wanted to make a scene based on Mars, and I came across this piece by Amante Lombardi

I made a very quick sketch on the idea that I had in mind. Right now, it's just missing something on the far right area. I'm still planning to adjust a few spots on the cliffs. I added a hill for the shot, but that was mainly it. The material layers for the rocks, sand, and cracks were already built. I moved a couple of the particle effects closer to the camera. Also used the nanite feature, just to see how far I can go adding many cliff meshes. I already went over the texture streaming budget :), so I turned it off. Definitely went overboard.

This is the first scene where none of the assets in the scene are mine. Just literally using what's in the marketplace.

As I was making this, I was leaning more towards a shot inspired by The Martian movie, with Matt Damon. I wanted to add a small drone, but tried to make it fit, floating by the astronaut, but because of the helmet, it didn't seem right seeing two round shapes next to each other. I went with a ball that could roll nearby the astronaut, almost like the BB-8 droid in the Star Wars series. As far as what the astronaut's looking at, I'm aiming to not make it too fictional, but almost realistic in some way. This is still a work-in-progress.

[UE4 - WIP] Columbia Scene - (Based on Hitman 2)

Work In Progress / 14 September 2019

Going to try and wrap this up soon. I didn't get all of what I wanted, but for the most part, I wanted to dive on mainly creating foliage. The past few days has been boggling down on tests and some interviews. Something's locked down for sure, and I'll eventually have to pack up and get things moving. For now, I'll want to get most of this out the window before I move on to the next thing.

[UE4 - WIP] Columbia Scene - (Based on Hitman 2) - Trees

Work In Progress / 29 August 2019


Back on some more foliage pieces. Made some leaf clusters for the trees, and some hanging pod flowers by the leaves, using what I made, along with the tree bark material. Went for a 2nd pass on the plants and flowers I made a while back. The vines, I'll work on those later. 

I made some of the stems for the plants a bit thicker, just because they'll be fairly small. I'll most likely use of couple of those to break some of the space of just seeing so much green around the scene. Going to make a few more trees to replace what I added a while back.

[UE4 - WIP] Columbia Scene - (Based on Hitman 2) - Foliage

Work In Progress / 14 August 2019


Here's an update on the leaves. I've been trying out ways making some of the flowers and plants in SpeedTree. I'm still trying to wrap my head about the flowers, and making the back side of it. So far, I'm planning to make a couple of these, that'll be around the grass, to avoid just having a green grass look around the scene.

I initially was using a bunch of materials and textures from MegaScans and GameTextures, but decided to go back and make the foliage from scratch. They'll be fairly small, but for the most part, I just wanted to make them, for the sake of the portfolio piece. I didn't want to just fill up the majority of the scene with assets that aren't mine. Aside from the foliage cards, I'll probably go back and make a moss material that's covering the rocks, that's probably the only other material that's not mine (it was from Substance Source). The paint passes were done in ZBrush. I went the route of just using the Polypaint tool.

[UE4 - WIP] Columbia Scene - (Based on Hitman 2) - Grass

Work In Progress / 30 July 2019

Small update on this scene. I'm in the phase of adding some grass. Using that LandscapeGrassOutput node in UE4.

It's basing it off of the grass material, of the 3 blends. I have 3 variations of grass, and 2 variations of the fern plants/clusters. This might all be overkill, but I'm just testing this out. I played through the Hitman 2 game again, and noticed that they have a ton of plants around for the player to use, to hide from the AI. I'm trying to find a fine line in between.

Just a while ago, I was debating on whether or not I should create the foliage plants on my own, or use what exists online. I'm using some materials from MegaScans and GameTextures, and am editing them out in SpeedTree. I have some plants that I grabbed off of from the SpeedTree store, that I plan on using, either working off of the graph nodes, or making some from scratch, and switching the textures completely. 

I most likely will replace what I did, and recreate them, without heavily using the asset packs. I tested out making some grass, from scratch. I plan on refining this for the scene.


[UE4 - WIP] Columbia Scene - (Based on Hitman 2) - Layout

Work In Progress / 22 July 2019

I posted this around just a while ago, on Twitter and Instagram. Just thought I'd leave a post here, to keep track on where I am now, on this scene.

Haven't been on this for quite a while. Made a texture pass on the stairs and the arch piece in the back. I might start on the trees and plants next. I've been holding off on that.

Been debating on how I would approach this. I have some packs I grabbed off of the SpeedTree store..

I'll most likely give it a shot, making some leaves and foliage, based on the tree packs I grabbed from the store.

[UE4 - WIP] Columbia Scene - (Based on Hitman 2) - Trees

Work In Progress / 03 July 2019

It's been a while since I posted on here, but I didn't want to forget this scene. I put this whole scene on hold, since my last post. Worked on a few art tests, and got into some substance materials a while back. I ended up working with a small indie team, Evil Noob, in late May, on a quick re-design on a map, for their next small browser game. I helped them out before, bug-testing their previous games, War Scrap and Dead Walk. When they asked for help on 3D, or if I knew any artists to help out on redesigning a map, I just joined it to give it a shot.

After that, I joined Airborn Studios! But! There was a catch. I was on a one-month trial period, to see if I'd be a good fit. The work was fun, I loved it :) But after the trial, they decided not to continue the gig for me :( Not in a bad way. The team was fun to work with, even though it was a brief period of time. I learned some new kinks that might actually come in handy for the jungle scene I had on hold. With that, I'm going to be back on the hunt, but if anything, I'm happy to have had the chance to work with those guys.

Now, on this scene, I felt like I was procrastinating trying to learn more about foliage. This was a slow process, but I've been slowly wrapping my head around Speed Tree. I'll eventually make a set of trees to add in the scene, grass, and a few plants. I don't know exactly what approach I'll take, either working off of an existing jungle tree and refining it, or making some from scratch. This is a new process for me, and I'll try and sink more time onto this.

For now, just thought I'd give an update on where I'm at, and where this scene is going.

[UE4 - WIP] Columbia Scene - (Based on Hitman 2) - Temp Meshes/Placement

Work In Progress / 10 April 2019

The trees & foliage meshes are from the UE4 Marketplace. Wanted to get a better feel on what it'll look like. I'll eventually replace them. Placed a chunk of rocks & cliffs around the scene. Water's temp for now. Blended the mud/grass materials. For the rocks, I plan on making some more to break the shapes. So far, I have mainly 3, w/ one being a big chunk. I may want to blend them with moss. Vines, trees, and more plants are definitely on the my bucket list. Most likely will work on the greybox meshes next.


[UE4 - WIP] Columbia Scene - (Based on Hitman 2) - Mud Ground Material (WIP 3)

Work In Progress / 04 February 2019

In between all the stuff's that's been going on, work and non-work related stuff, I've been making these for the Columbia scene. Some slow pickings. These will be for the ground in the scene, to blend. I was aiming for a mud base material, mud + grass, and grass. The grass might be over-kill, as far as the height, so I'll adjust that a bit.

I hung out with some indie devs earlier today to try and focus on the albedo/roughness for the first material, before bolting out for the Superbowl. I haven't placed all of them in the scene yet. Just thought I'd post a WIP for the sake of posting a WIP. I'll get back on this whenever I'll squeeze in the time.

[UE4 - WIP] Columbia Scene - (Based on Hitman 2) - Mud Ground Material (WIP 2)

Work In Progress / 27 January 2019

Mud ground WIP, part deux. Might make another variation with the mud ground.

Mud (slightly different form) + grass
Grass + some mud  

I'll eventually play around with these, blending the materials in the scene. Still refining this one, but don't want to get too stuck on it.