Monday, December 26, 2016

Experiments at the Solar Theatre

A little something I was working on over the Christmas break of 2016.



I've been learning Substance Painter, to be able to make nice realistic PBR textures.

So I built a scene to test my new walls, floor, table, sword, crystals, etc.

I wanted to try to get nice looking lighting, so I grabbed a Light Rays script that has more fully functioning volume-lights (which can be seen even when not looking directly into the light source).

I made a day/night cycle, which is accelerated in this video.

And I made it so you can light wall-torches using the torch that you are carrying!

I also made some "Sensor Lights", which is a light that gets its brightness and color from a Render Texture, which is the view from a camera I place in the scene.  So, I set up a camera that looks straight down from above, therefore getting the overall average color and brightness of the world, and sends that info to some lights I've put inside the house, thus emulating a sort of ambient bounce lighting within the house.

Using these Render Textures could be quite handy for other purposes in the future too!

I also learned more about how to use the Realtime Global Illumination in Unity, as well as making reflective surfaces using Reflection Probes.

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Thiefy plans

I'm keen to try to make a full Thief-style level some time, with AIs in it, that can see and hear you, become suspicious, chase you, and search for you, as well as give up and return to their patrol route if you remain undetected.

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An earlier iteration of the same project can be found here...



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Saturday, December 3, 2016

S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Call of Pripyat - An inspirational immersive sim

I played the first STALKER game for several hours, but I never got deep into it.

Years later, I kept tabs on the series, and noticed that "Call of Pripyat" has consistently been the most highly considered game in the series.

So seeing it on sale on Steam just before Christmas, I decided to jump in and play it!  

I thought I'd record my experiences here in a blog post, thinking about immersive sims in 
general, and what the game inspires in me.

Here's a bunch of my sightings from the first play session in the game.

































Sir, You Are Being Hunted: A gorgeous procedurally generated first person stealth game

I finally got around the playing "Sir, You Are Being Hunted".  

This is a fantastic looking game, with some very cool gameplay elements.



The game begins by being randomly generated!



There's a great talk about the processes for creating the world here, by Tom Betts from Big Robot, called Creating FPS Open Worlds Using Procedural Techniques from the GDC Vault.

The core goal of the game is to collect the mysterious artifacts, scattered around the 5 islands.  These must be brought back to the standing stones to win.  But all the while you will be hunted by robots!





The landscapes are quite gorgeous, with an accelerated day/night cycle, with all different hues of sky and fog on the different islands.  It is a feast of opportunity to take great screenshots, and soak up the atmosphere.

Here's a bunch of sightings from my first play session in the game.