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WildStar Wednesday: From Concept to Creature, Part 2

Written by Robert "Robeardo" Land on October 13, 2011
It's the return of Metal Maw!

Good WildStar Wednesday, everyone! This week we have a visitor from Nexus! We're going to be checking in with Metal Maw and see how our devs are treating him.

For those just joining us in our "From Concept to Creature" posts, let me explain...no, there is too much, let me sum up. We had WildStar fans at gamescom help our Lead Concept Arist, Andy Cotnam, design a creature for WildStar. He brought that sketch back to Carbine Studios and finished it up. Read all about that process right here! Then, the sketch was handed off to Senior Character Artist, Brandon Dix to make and texture the model.

That brings us to where we are right now. Every creature in WildStar goes through many stages on its way into the game. We're going to show those stages as Metal Maw is subjected to them. I'll let Brandon explain what's going on in each stage:

Step 1 - Initial geometry is created to take into zbrush (a 3D sculpting program) so we can sculpt a rough form for the body. This geo includes the anatomy of an unaltered version of the creature. (As Andy alluded to in his explanation of the concept process.) This will save time if we want an "un-techified" variant of Metal Maw in the future. That variant will share the same proportions and some of the same details.




Step 2 - This is the initial sculpt where we add the details needed to establish Metal Maw's proportions a little further and to give a solid base to start building the tech pieces into his body.




Step 3, version 1 - Hard surface pieces are modeled into the creature's body. A bit more sculpting is done during this process to make sure both the organic body and tech implants meet up the way we want them to - the way they were envisioned by the fans at gamescom.




Step 3, version 2 - The previous render (version 1) shows the mesh of the body so you can see where the "organic" parts of the creature meet the tech. This is a full render:



Thanks, Brandon!

There you have it, folks! That's where Metal Maw is right now - one step closer to developing a serious Player Kill Count in WildStar. We'll check back with him in a few weeks and see what he's up to! By then, Brandon will have done (read: subjected Metal Maw to) many, if not all, of the following:

  1. Sculpt and base texture on high poly while sculpting
  2. Use re-topology tools to build a low poly model over top of the high poly model
  3. Use the high poly model to generate normal maps and base color maps on the low poly
  4. Finish painting the texture maps
  5. Put into engine and fine tune to make the shaders and colors work with our world cohesively

For those who want to do a side-by-side comparison, here is the current model next to the finished concept so you can see just how impressive our Art Team is!

     

Come back in seven days for the next WildStar Wednesday!

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