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14. March 2019


SideFX Software have just released Houdini 17.5.  You can learn more about the 17.5 release here with more detailed release notes being available here.  Houdini is such a unique procedural 3D software package that the release notes will make little sense, unless you are already familiar with Houdini.  Houdini is “built from the ground up to be a procedural system that empowers artists to work freely, create multiple iterations and rapidly share workflows with colleagues.”  Traditionally known for special effects work, Houdini is becoming more and more commonly used in game development.  In fact, they ship a runtime version, Houdini Engine, that enables you to bring their procedural approach directly into game engines such as Unreal Engine or Unity.

Perhaps more importantly, Houdini is also now available in the much cheaper Houdini Indie version (also on Steam), bringing Houdini within the price range of indie developers, so long as they make less that $100,000USD per year.  They also have the non-commercial but completely free Houdini Apprentice for people looking to learn or evaluate Houdini.  To go along with Apprentice they also have tons of free learning resources to get you started.  Be forewarned though, Houdini is a very unique application with a very harsh learning curve!

For a better idea of Houdini’s game related capabilities, be certain to check out their games reel and details available here.

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12. March 2019


SpriteStack.io is a tool for creating 3D pixel art using the technique known as Sprite stacking.  Basically it’s a matter of creating a 3d object by making stacks of sprites.  Sprite stacking is described as:

Sprite stacking is a simple technique that allows you to get 3D models by making a stack of 2D images. Each image is offset by 1 pixel and represents a horizontal slice of a 3D model.

The tool runs entirely in the browser and is very simple to learn.  The help/documentation is available here.  The tool is free to use but requires a $1 payment to enable exporting outside of the public gallery.

You can see SpriteStack in action in the video below.  To get started in SpriteStack click here to launch the editor.

Art


23. February 2019


It’s simply amazing the amount of free software available these days for game developers, and SculptGL is no exception.  It is a 3D sculpting application similar to ZBrush, Sculptris or Mudbox, but it runs entirely inside your browser (or locally via Electron if you prefer).  Features from SculptGL include:

  • Sculpting tools
    • Standard tools : Brush, Inflate, Smooth, Twist, Drag, etc
    • PBR Vertex Painting (color, roughness, metalness)
    • Alpha texture support for each tools
  • Multiresolution sculpting
    • Quad-tri Subdivison (catmull-clark/loop)
    • Reversion (compute opposite of subdvision if possible)
    • Navigating from low/high poly level subdiv will retain sculpting changes
    • keep UVs (both reversion and subdivison)
  • Voxel remeshing
    • Uses SurfaceNets meshing algorithm (produces quad-only mesh)
    • Uniform remeshing (quads will have the same size)
    • Can also create non-manifold vertex :(
    • In case of a non closed mesh, a naive holefilling algorithm is performed first
    • Deletes UV
  • Dynamic topology
    • Triangles only
    • Operates in real time
    • Local subdivision (create new triangles)
    • Local decimation (deletes triangles)
    • Deletes UV
  • Supports OBJ, PLY, STL import/export
    • Reads vertex color
    • Optimizes post and pre transform cache (tipsy algorithm)
  • Undo/Redo support

It is an open source MIT licensed project with the source available on Github.  Check out SculptGL in action in the video below.

GameDev News Art


16. February 2019


So many of the best games ever created use the Isometric graphic style.  Games such as Baldur’s Gate 1 and 2, Planescape Torment, Ultima 7, XCom and Diablo 1 and 2 are shining examples of games made in this style.  In this tutorial we show how you can easily create Isometric style maps using the excellent open source Tiled map editor.  We show how to import multiple tilesets, create an isometric tile map composed of multiple layers and how to define triggers and properties for use in your game.

Resources Used/Mentioned in this Tutorial:

Programming Design Art


14. February 2019


If you’ve found yourself looking for a dedicated and free 3D modelling application, look no further than Rocket 3F.  Available for Windows powered computers, Rcoket3F has all of the functionality you would expect from a modern 3D application, in a streamlined but well documented interface.  Rocket is based on nvil which was previously known as VoidWorld.  Rocket 3F is full functioning in it’s free form, with a premium version available with advanced customization abilities.


Learn more about Rocket 3F in the video below:

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