Monday, October 12, 2009

Low-Polygon Character Modeling...

Hello again!
Thought I'd shoot a quick update to the intertrons to show what I've been up to lately. In addition to looking for full-time employment, I'm finding myself juggling several projects at once! This time it was a month-long contest held on the forums.

The contest called for a low-polygon character (or series of characters) that numbered 700 triangles or fewer designed for a mobile device, such as a Nintendo DS or Sony PSP. The theme was an action movie side-scrolling brawler, such as Final Fight or Streets of Rage.

"Final Fight:" The perennial "Beat dudes up until they disappear" game.

One of my favorite action movies of all time is "The Seven Samurai" directed by Akira Kurosawa. It's one of those kinds of movies in which every time you watch it, you notice something new. I also thought that the idea of a side-scrolling brawler set in feudal Japan sounded pretty awesome as well. I decided to model the leader of the Seven, Kanbei.

Best. Sideburns. Ever.

Modeling a low-poly character is really tough! You really have to make every vertex and line count. Texture space is also super-important. The contest only allowed a single 512x512 map for the entire character.

Click the Image for a larger view

For every additional character after the first one, the limits were even tougher. You couldn't use more than 500 triangles, and the texture sizes were reduced even further! Nonetheless, I decided to include a bandit character for Kanbei to fight against.

Click Image above for a larger view

In addition to modeling and texturing both characters, I also created a custom rig that is shared by both of them. It makes use of IK and some basic controls for moving and controlling several groups of bones at once.

Click the above image for a closer look

So there we go. That's what I've been up to lately. Check back later this week when I'll give you a dose of High-Detail stuff that will blow your mind! Until next time!

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