Thursday, 6 October 2016

Sea of Thieves Podcast

Another YouTube video! Taking a break from VR to talk about some of the tech art in Sea of Thieves, in the second part of this Tales from the Tavern podcast:

Monday, 3 October 2016

Lining Up 3D Captures of Real Spaces (And Creating Them)

So, a lot of the work that went into the Stargate Unreal demo has been just in creating the bedroom environment and getting the Unreal level to line up with my actual playspace, which is harder to do than it may sound - aligning things by hand in the editor involves a lot of trial and error, and it's easy to get something aligned well on one side of the room, but small inaccuracies in scale and rotation means everything's way off on the other end. Even having included a metre rule in the scan hasn't made the process as easy as I'd have liked. To boot, even if you do align the mesh in the level, if you run room-setup again, it will probably put it right back out of alignment again.

So yeah, a better solution was required! First off, I'll talk a bit about the room scan though, since there's usually plenty of questions about actually capturing the space to begin with.

I Built a Stargate In My Bedroom!

So, I spent the weekend finishing off this little side-project:

All done in Unreal 4.13, using the HTC Vive. Will try and put together some instructions for how to do the more complicated bits like the maths for lining up a room scam with your actual physical space in a little bit - and hopefully will also figure something out for uploading the project and letting anyone that's curious pick it apart and see how it works. Will have to clean it up for that first though!

Credits for the assets used: Hrusov Castle by R0m1R Cloisters 2 by Paul by Szabolcs Bognár

This is the scan of my room that you can try on Destinations if you have an HMD:


A little update on what I've been up to the past four years:

The sixty-second format doesn't leave much room to talk about the specifics of the tech, but it does have some pretty imagery!

The technique is roughly similar to "Volumetric Clouds and Mega-Particles" in Shader X5. We render solid geometry with vertex lighting that approximates SSS to an off-screen quarter-res buffer, blur it, then apply distortion from a cubemap that we look up based on the eye-vector. To prevent the frosted-glass effect where it's very obviously a flat shader applied on top, we use the depth to decrease the standard deviation of the gaussian blur with distance and also modulate the strength of the distortion based on the blurred depth.

Might have a little bit more talking about this in the near future. It's almost exactly four years now since I've started working at Rare and this is just one of the many awesome bits of graphics tech I've had a chance to work on.

Friday, 26 April 2013

Joel Burgess: Skyrim's Modular Level Design - GDC 2013

Joel Burgess: Skyrim's Modular Level Design - GDC 2013 Transcrip...: Skyrim’s Modular Approach to Level Design Originally presented @ Level Design in a Day, GDC 2013 Co-Authored and Co-Presented w/Nate Pu...

So, I've not updated this thing in a while, I enjoyed this article so much, that I'm going to do the Tumblr thing and repost this!

Friday, 7 September 2012

Something For the Weekend

Finishing up progress for the weekend, here's a quick look at the animation editor I've been working on. It's almost feature complete (barring a few minor things like editing the Z component of the animations, which will in fact be 3D) and it's been an interesting task, designing such a specialised tool.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

2.5D XNA RPG Engine - Some Technical Details

I keep getting questions regarding some of the more technical aspects of my 2.5D shading implementation in my earlier YouTube videos like this one, so I want to dedicate an entry here to explaining a little bit what's going on behind the scenes there and fielding questions.