The idea for the NEON Challenger scene is to develop the interior of a spacial destroyer using only assets.
Since I could not make a good video, I decided to put the Unity presentation in a Webgl provider. It was a lot better, however, because it's Webgl some features are not working as they should be. The link is https://supernovagamestudio.itch.io/neon-challenge-20172018
Note: The presentation did not look exactly the same. In an attempt to optimize the video, I deleted everything. I discovered the worst way when copying a scene, it does not copy the timeline file. Result ... I had to redo everything and this way it did not look exactly the same.Step 1 - Planning the scene
As a basis for inspiration, we are using the internet (SPACE X, NASA e Pinterest for example).
We are using only assets.
For NEON Challenge the proposal is as follows:
In a certain part of the game, the characters are aboard a spaceship.
In it there is a deck with the launch of spaceships. The idea is to portray this location.
As a base we did some research on the internet to take as base as aircraft are stored inside for example of an aircraft carrier, as pictured below:
Although the idea of using an aircraft carrier as a base for the scene is cool, we realized in a preliminary assessment that it would be too many elements to assemble and generate an animation.
The idea of setting the scene with a smaller vessel seems more interesting to us.
A modern Destroyer that usually takes few aircraft seems to us something more attractive. Most destroyers carry two helicopters. As we will be in space, we think of two fighters and two dropships.
So the final idea of the scene is to have the deck of a space destroyer.
Step 2 - Asset Study
The idea of developing a game with these features is already relatively old. Now with the stimulation of the NEOM Challenge, we have decided to put into practice what we have learned (or are learning).
In July 2014 to evaluate the assets and check the characteristics of the animation tool (timeline), we assemble a small video, very simple and without touch-ups. At the time we set up the animation using only the timeline and the control of activation / deactivation of several cameras.
Space Unity (https://www.assetstore.unity3d.com/en/#!/content/7095)
It did a lot of work, not only for the fact that the station was built using the assets, but because of the control of the cameras, something much simpler today using Cinemachine.
The result you see just below:
Until we can use in the future these elements and scene in some level of the game.
Step 3 - Choosing the assets
Based on the experience of assembling the station, we chose the following assets for the new scene:
We chose the following assets as a basis:
Wasp Interdictor (https://www.assetstore.unity3d.com/en/#!/content/74433)
Sci-Fi Level Construction Kit 2
Sci-fi Level Kit
Step 4 - Setting the scene
We plan to build the structured deck as follows: an aircraft maintenance area on the left, a takeoff or transit area to the center, and the command center on the right (as in aircraft carriers).
With the assets we begin the assembly of the scene. The result so far is in the figure below:
Now let's work to improve the lighting and start putting the animations
Step 5 - Structuring the spaces on our deck.
One detail I find interesting is how to move the aircraft on the deck of our spacial destroyer. I do not think there is much space. I could not imagine something practical and functional initially. I thought of rails, monorails when I remembered something great. There are some places in the world where robots perform the task of parking the cars. See the example below:
Based on this concept, we took some assets and set up the platform and the robot as shown below. It was simple, but if we give time before the end of the deadline, to improve this idea.
Another thing we started to research today are the characters in the scene.
We already had the Extreme Special Forces Character Pack from Vertigo Games (https://www.assetstore.unity3d.com/en/#!/content/10618). There are other excellent options, but we've decided to start with this asset to evaluate.
Step 6 - Planning the animation
We think of animating two scenes: a simpler and a more complex one (if it takes time!).
In the simplest animation, we will show a normal working day. The sequence of the animation will be as follows: in the central part, an aircraft descending from the elevator to the bottom. On the left side, we will have another aircraft under maintenance. The first aircraft will pass through the deck and be parked by the robots. A forklift truck will carry supplies from one side to another and eventually we will see some drones bringing materials to the mechanics.
The second animation, in addition to what has already been presented in the first animation, will launch a spacecraft.
Step 7 - Cinemachine
I did not know Cinemachine until I got into the Neon Challenge.
The experience was great. In my opinion it is an intuitive and relatively easy tool to work, alias I got carried away. The scene almost became a short film, so much excitement.
Working in conjunction with Timeline allows for accurate, organized assembly of content.
There are several tutorials on the internet and this has greatly aided learning.
Step 8 - Light, Optimization and Post Processing
Since I wanted to leave the environment half DARK, I thought it would be interesting to use lights with volume.
In the same way, during assembly, I discovered that my machine could not render properly. This way I was forced to optimize the scenes, removing objects, rearranging prefabs and other actions to improve the performance of the presentation. We lose a bit in detail, after all a greater amount of objects allows a greater degree of realism.
We did several tests for the Post Processing format.
Coincidentally, in December, an asset was released for this process. Although the features are excellent, we made the option of a custom Post Processing.
Step 9 - The preview of the scene
After losing countless hours setting up the scene, we found that my computer can not properly render the scene, even though it does the optimization.
It is hoped to be able to solve this in another way. Look how the preview of the scene was. It looks more like a slide than a video because of the low fps rate.
Step 10 - Final Version
We made some changes to the final version of the scene. Likewise, we improved the capture rate for video production, but it still was not ideal. See the result below for good graphic quality.
Step 11 - Bonus
Initially he had thought of putting together a reduced version of the scene (only presenting the deck of our space destroyer) and another presenting an additional with the launch of a spaceship.
He did not know if he was buying the space destroyer asset or mounting it using the asset objects he already had.
Since I did not have any money in December to spend on assets (due to the holiday season), I decided to build our space destroyer.
We use only the assets of Sci-Fi Level Construction Kit 2 and Sci-fi Level Kit assets.
I lost about 3 days riding our space destroyer. I think the result was great.
Since I lost a lot of time riding, I wanted to see the result soon. As I was anxious and did not want to waste much time setting up another scene, I thought of something simple.
Paying homage to the game Destiny, we set up the scene similar to that of level loading, that there is any ship flying over the destination planet of the level.
The result you see in the video below (see my notebook, can not render the edges of the scene).
Step 12 - Units Assets Used
Sci-fi Level Kit / Hedgehog Team
Sci-Fi Level Construction Kit 2 / Velkin Labs
Third Person Cover Controller / Redbee (we used this asset initially to see how the scenario would look, but then its features were not used, even though we kept and used the animations in the characters in the scene).
Sci-Fi Hero / Will Morillas
Wasp Interdictor / FORGE3D
Extreme Special Forces Character Pack / Vertigo Games
Extreme Vehicle Pack / Vertigo Games
Realistic Turrets 2 / Artic
Mars Landscape / Black Sun (Used in the second scene as a test).
Volumetric Light Beam / Tech Salad
Huge FBX Mocap Library / cMonkeys
Dark Future Music / Daniel Gooding
Cinemachine / Unity Technologies
Recorder / Unity Technologies
Post Processing Stack / Unity Technologies
Post Processing Profiles / Gesta2
Step 13 - Conclusion:
Despite the problems, the experience was great.
Especially because I learned a lot when I was forced to use certain technologies to meet Neom Challenge specifications.
I had never used Cinemachine and knew little about Post Processing (I was studying these features when I first started participating in the Neon Challenge).
All scenarios and objects were created from the second week of December, a period that I learned of the challenge.
Although I have used a lot of assets, many of them have been for years.
In fact I have some ideas of games and every month I buy some assets to enable the development of these games.
With this I have a lot of assets available. Coincidentally, for the Neon Challenge theme, there was a wide variety of assets that could be used.
What was missing in this process was time. So much to learn and do. I had to share my time with work (working in a website creation agency) and various tasks.
Due to the lack of time to develop the project, there was not enough time to better handle the textures and shades of most objects, since many of them are from old technologies.
It is also evident that I will not be able to work with my current machine if I want to develop more elaborate projects.
Anyway, in a few weeks I learned a lot and what was done stimulated me a lot to develop certain ideas that were previously kept waiting for an opportunity