Critique => 2D & 3D => Topic started by: Lazycow on December 06, 2008, 04:26:46 pm

Title: Nanovoid
Post by: Lazycow on December 06, 2008, 04:26:46 pm
Hi, here are some graphics from Nanovoid, a space game which I am working on for quite some time now. The game is planned for the iPhone / iPod-touch, but there could be versions for PC after that, because it is based on a cross-platform game construction kit.

In the game you control a space fighter that has to pass several dangerous sectors of alien empires. (5 different empires are planned)

(http://img57.imageshack.us/img57/1343/showcase3cu9.png) (http://img176.imageshack.us/img176/9638/isometrican0.png)
The Fleet of the Humanoid Empire. [wip]

The objects are modeled with AC3D and rendered with povray. The screen of the iPhone is 480x320, and the average craft size is about 32x32 pixels and the boss-crafts are about 64x64 pixels. (where this is only a rule of thumb, because there is no real limitation) Although the iPhone may have the power to render all the objects in realtime, all the graphics are prerendered. (in isometric view)

Battlecruiser (80x44 /  128 rotation angles, 542 vertices/ 599 surfaces) This is a render-test without a texture map, but with procedural metal textures (chrome and copper) that have been assigned to some surfaces.

C&C about models, style and textures are welcome.

Update: (the game is finished, take a look)

*new* Nanovoid - reigning space, trailer (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUBZk5PHKqg)
Nanovoid, it's coming... teaser (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MEEO_rp4Jeg)

appstore link: http://itunes.apple.com/app/nanovoid/id488536633 (http://itunes.apple.com/app/nanovoid/id488536633)
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: TrevoriuS on December 06, 2008, 06:42:06 pm
If you'll be using this real time rendered, you need waaay less triangles for such a small format. If you prerender this, any more than 32 angles won't be noticed by the user once the result is interactive. So far, you're not really well optimized for lo-spec.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Willows on December 07, 2008, 01:15:00 am
Prerendered, not real-time :)

I'm curious how much more lived-in these will look with textures.

As it is, I'm not sure I'm feelin' any of the ships for what they are. Stargate works, starbase looks more like a refuelling station than a colony/habitation or battle station. Interceptor, Transporter and Supplier will probably pass for what they are, but I think the design on the battlecruiser just doesn't read as battlecruiser.

So I'll pick on it, and leave the rest alone ;)

Thinking "human space battleship", I think edgy, pointy, sharp thing with enormous engines and even bigger guns. Poly limits obviously prevent you from modelling tiny guns, but I think a whole lot more can be done than smooth, organic shapes. Obvious references for my vision of human space battleship would be Starcraft's Battlecruiser


and star wars' giant triangle ships, whatever they're called


Edgy, sharp, crude-looking and human. Your battleship looks like a giant carrier/transporter at the mo. That's my opinion :)
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: questseeker on December 08, 2008, 06:40:37 pm
The transporter and interceptor are too similar. You might make the interceptor more pointed (narrower back in particular) or add conspicuous cannons etc.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: snader on December 10, 2008, 11:14:17 am
you're using mostly round shapes which makes things feel a bit blobby, try putting in some boxy hallways or something around the starbase, also make some antennae stick out.
As mentioned before the battlecruiser doesnt fel like one, i personally see it more as a transport ship, maybe some sort of luxury cruise thing. it's got no weaponry, no shield and no agressive look.
the small ships don't look too interesting either but thatt'll probably clear up with some textures
do you have some concepts of thumbnails we can see?
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Lazycow on December 10, 2008, 10:38:13 pm
Hey, thanks for the comments!

@snader: My concept art is on paper and as I am no artist, it isn't really impressive to look at. You are right, I should definitely add some details on the starbase. (which is indeed a refueling station) And probably on the smaller crafts, too.

@questseeker: Yeah, more details on the Interceptor!

@willows: Well, what is the "typical" terrestrial battlecruiser? Is it edgy? Is it round? It is hard to say, because there are only fictional battlecruisers to look at. In Star Wars, these star destroyers are edgy, where in Perry Rhodan the terrestrial battleships are all spherical, and in Star Trek it is kind of a mixture, isn't it? But finally, I have to agree with you. The old version really looks like a bigger version of the transport ship.

@TrevoriuS: As far as I know the iPhone specs are like this: 480x320, 24 MB texture memory, textures up to 1024x1024, over 2000 polys with "very good" speed. So yes, 600 polygons for a craft would be indeed way to much. Actually, I still want to keep them prerendered, so the polygons are not the problem, but the 24 MB texture memory. "lowpoly" is with me as a fallback option - let's see how it will develop. By the way, the required number of rotation angles for a smooth rotation depends also on the rotation speed. So 32 angles may only be enough for small, fast rotating objects.

(http://img504.imageshack.us/img504/1412/showcase4gd5.png) (http://img177.imageshack.us/img177/6732/bcmk5rotrv7.gif)
The fleet of the Fanatics Empire / the new Battlecruiser (reduced to 400 polys) better?

A first attempt on texturing. I only wrapped the texture on the sphere of the supplyship, so far. Well, looks a bit boring. Any hints?
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: TrevoriuS on December 10, 2008, 10:46:01 pm
if it's prerendered anyway, make good use of normal maps, and add some greeble to the surface.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Sherman Gill on December 10, 2008, 11:44:42 pm
new battlecruiser is way better :).
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Willows on December 11, 2008, 12:57:16 am
Now THAT's a battlecruiser :D

An' it's not even so much what a "typical" battlecruiser is as much as "What does the design of the craft suggest it is?"

What you've got now is pretty awesome, though. Sweet update.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: ptoing on December 11, 2008, 07:51:42 am
As far as prerendering goes, you do not really need to texture stuff, it's better to model and just have flat colours. Cave seems to be doing that for their shmups and it works very well. Good lighting is also very important.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: TrevoriuS on December 11, 2008, 08:11:21 am
Good lighting is also very important.
I'd like to mention consistency here as well.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Lazycow on December 14, 2008, 12:07:50 pm
@TrevoriuS: I have tried greebles already and did not like the result very much. The models are probably too small for that. But normal maps were a good idea!
@ptoing: I did not find any shmup screenshots from cave. Do you know the name of the games?

Here's a render test with bricky normal maps and one specific white light source at the top left. (and some white ambient light) Looks like there is still some room for improvement.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: ndchristie on December 14, 2008, 05:02:24 pm
Oh, normal maps are a great idea, but only when they are used to accentuate the forms!  criss-crossing a ship that's quite flat now (medium-glossy is your friend in space) with some arbitrary bright and dark lines only destroys the nice details of the model!
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: TrevoriuS on December 14, 2008, 05:34:08 pm
It works on the center ship, the sphere
But indeed fails on the right
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Lazycow on December 20, 2008, 07:59:29 pm
(http://img401.imageshack.us/img401/4391/showcase6amr6.png) (http://img509.imageshack.us/img509/5192/showcasehwn5.gif) (http://img201.imageshack.us/img201/9383/showcasefsd5.gif)
The Humanoid Fleet: Now illuminated by 3 light sources. Does that normal map really look that bad? I tried to imitate metal plates on the hull. Also, the Interceptor and the material colors have been tweaked a bit and the now obsolete old Battlecruiser is the Transporter now. The Fanatic Fleet: These crafts are build out of glowing crystals. (mostly) The middle one probably glows a bit too much.

still WIP...
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: TrevoriuS on December 20, 2008, 08:05:59 pm
Where's distortion, filth, things like that?
I myself find this way too clean to be convincing.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: vierbit on December 21, 2008, 12:02:38 pm
They looks far better with the new lightning, and the higher saturation and brightness.
I think normal maps only hurt when they packed on very small objects, like this rocket shaped ship, on the others they look fine to me.

Interesting concept with the fanatic fleet, but the details get a little lost. Simplify the shape could maybe help.
Where's distortion, filth, things like that?
I myself find this way too clean to be convincing.
Explain what you mean, as I personally think its contra productive on such a small scale. Probably only adds to much noise to it.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: ndchristie on December 21, 2008, 09:29:48 pm
I agree with vierbit on the no dirt.

Normal maps are great when drawn to the mesh, but this is just meaningless lines stretched over and the result is awkward segmentation and distortion.  Normal maps are like textures effective on a small scale when used to create or emphasize edges implied, but not expressed, by design.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: TrevoriuS on December 21, 2008, 10:30:47 pm
It's not purely noise or dirt I mean to add, but these colours are too saturated, and have too little difference in the diffuse part. It's like having a huge brick wall in which all the stones have the same colour (and luminance?). Just wrong.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Dr D on December 23, 2008, 12:03:26 am
I don't agree, I think in designing such a fine piece of craft (possibly even in space, where there is no dirt!), you would take much care to keep it clean, and from being weathered.

Now whether it's built on Earth, on some futuristic space station, or a different planet, could affect that totally, as well as where it's been, such as having a heavy battle, by a big, soily, planet, with lasers and rockets flying into it, shooting up dirt to land way out onto one of the ships.  ::)

But nevertheless, I think it'll be cleaned up time to time.

Bricks just sit there, on Earth, and nobody ever messes with them again. Depending on their location, they get eroded, some more than others.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Lazycow on December 28, 2008, 06:58:30 pm
Update time!
@TrevioriuS: The surfaces of the crafts looked a bit like the spaceship versions of matchbox cars (although they are no cars). Is it that what you had in mind? Modding materials in povray is still a cryptic book for me, but I somehow managed to tweak the metal texture a bit to a different look which is not so shiny. So what about that?
@vierbit: It's a sad story to remove all these details that made it in the models over all the time. But yes, they just looks like distortions. Seems like I have to revamp the models again.  :-\
@Dr.D : Ha! I asked myself everytime why Janeway's Voyager starship from Star Trek looks like polished after years in hostile space. But that's another story.

The Reptiloid Fleet: a) heavy fighter, b) light fighter, c) transporter with fuel capsule, d) tripod fighter (3 joined heavy fighers)
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Lazycow on January 05, 2009, 02:16:47 pm
Finally, I finished all 20 "vessels". They look not as good as the spaceships in Tanscendence or Escape Velocity Nova and additionally they look a bit like "toy"-starships. I think this is because the surface textures of my crafts are not that advanced. (Looks like the other games use handmade textures) But somehow the Nanovoid ships have their own (not so 100% realistic) style and so I think they could be good enough.

I tried to remove the "small" details on all crafts as they did not really give that much of improvement. In the hope to get a cleaner look. Hope you like it...  ;)

Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Border on January 05, 2009, 02:59:23 pm
really cool design and most of them read well.
maybe the laserstar isnt defined enough or it just a matter of taste.
i love the ingame action on your site, is it a mockup or its real?
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Lazycow on January 06, 2009, 09:47:19 am
(http://img300.imageshack.us/img300/8562/laserstar2kr2.gif) - (http://img246.imageshack.us/img246/9333/tentacle1on8.gif)
Somehow, I have managed to squeeze a bit more out of the laserstar... (EDIT) and... "the tentacle of the Bastard"

That ingame animation is from the gameplay prototype. (which has old graphics) Nevertheless, you can play it if you want. You may find it here (http://forums.tigsource.com/index.php?topic=3670.0), where you also can take a look at the old graphics. (or better not)  ;) Do not expect too much, it is just the prototype.
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Lazycow on December 14, 2011, 07:39:11 pm
Well... finally, the game is finished and coming to the app store. Phew...
Just in case you are interested, take a look:

*new* Nanovoid - reigning space, trailer (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUBZk5PHKqg)
Nanovoid, it's coming... teaser (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MEEO_rp4Jeg)
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Indigo on December 16, 2011, 11:31:06 pm
As a huge fan of the escape velocity series, I'm super excited about this!
Title: Re: Nanovoid
Post by: Lazycow on December 17, 2011, 03:39:51 pm
it's in the appstore now: http://itunes.apple.com/app/nanovoid/id488536633 (http://itunes.apple.com/app/nanovoid/id488536633)