Dead on arrival (FINAL)
Updated 2 months ago


UPDATE: For anyone who wants to try the demo on their PC here's the download link. Everything in the scene runs in real-time, including reflections, so old PCs will struggle to maintain 30 fps at high resolutions. I also fixed some minor bugs in the build that bothered me personally, but the video remains original.


Hello. My name is Veaceslav and I'm an indie Unity developer with just 2 years experience in the industry.
For this challenge I decided to go with a simple concept of a ship crashing on an abandoned colony planet with high seismic activity. The assets I used are something I did a few years ago for a mobile game, as well as some props from the asset store.
My goal was to make a fast-paced dynamic scene and see if I can make something good looking with mobile environments and Unity's cinematic features.


I had this idea in my head for quite some time, an intro cinematic for my future sci-fi game where a small vessel crashes on an abandoned colony planet, the pilot survives and must find a way to get out of it. But for this demo I chose a simpler, yet more interesting route.
As basis for the environment I used a portion of a racing track I made back in 2013 for Cyberline Racing (iOS, Android) and heavily modified it so the sky would be visible, as well as replaced and added new buildings. Here is what the original looked like:


Let's try make it brief.
At first I planned to make three sections in my demo, but quickly scrapped the first one, where the ship flew above the clouds. I didn't think it looked presentable and had trouble connecting it to the second section which is now the first (city view). But the clouds (two giant particle emitters) were not wasted. I recolored them and put above the city. The city itself is composed of random buildings I made for backgrounds years ago.
All my initial attempts with camera movements were done with scripts (translate, rotate). At that point I had Unity 5.6.3 installed and there was obviously no Cinemachine.
After a prototype of the city view section was done, I started importing random low-poly stuff I made back in the day, just blocking out the general picture and ensuring the differently styled parts fit together in one shot.
Overall the 3D soup of the main scene consists of:
  • Props taken from five levels of Cyberline Racing game (my own stuff, of course)
  • Some stuff I made as test tasks and freelance work (gate, animated bug)
  • Asset store models (ship, terrain, flying drone, ATMs, sci-fi radar)
  • Props from my upcoming game Preventive Strike (shooting turret guns, fire particles, explosions)
Below you can see some screens from the viewport. Particle systems are disabled, so no weather effects like clouds and rain.
The general scene was built in Maya and was imported to Unity 2017.2 as a large pile of separate objects for tweaking their layout in engine. I tried importing them as one object, it did not affect performance on my PC, but made life miserable. All the materials use standard shaders available with Unity. There are 6 texture atlases (1024x1024) and a few small tiled textures used for the environment.
Once I became happy with how things look with lighting, fog and post effects, it was time to install Cinemachine. After playing with it for several days, my timeline looks like this:
  • All the camera and drone animations were done inside the timeline.
  • The bug animation was imported from Maya.
  • Turret guns behavior, ship movement and its explosion after hitting the building are scripted.


  • Crash-landed Military Ship
  • Heavy Sci Fi Drone
  • ATM
  • MSFMC - Radar Dish
  • Post Processing Stack V1 (V2 broke my project, twice)
  • Unity Particle Pack (heavily modified)
  • Auto Turret Pro (heavily modified)
  • Ambient Sample Pack
  • Explosion SFX
  • 15 Jet Engine Sounds
  • Dark Sci-Fi Music Pack
  • Camera Sound FX (for bug running)
  • Volumetric Lights for Unity 5 (GitHub)
Tools used: Autodesk Maya 2016, Unity 2017.2.1f1 (64-bit), Adobe Photoshop CS6, Audacity


It was a busy month, I could only work late in the evening. Having a regular job and a 2 year old kid at home does not boost creativity, but that's life and I did what I could and I am happy with the result. :)
I thank the Unity team for organizing such an outstanding contest and wish luck to other participants!
The scene is pretty much ready, maybe I'll have time to fix and bump the texture resolution, since this is a mobile environment from the start. This week I'm making the animation and optimizations.

Today I made the ship crash using gameplay mechanics (translate, rotate, rigidbodies, colliders, tags and OnDeath instances), as well as a standard camera with LookAt script attached, for testing purposes. Looks good so far.
For some reason I can only view volumetric fog in the viewport, but it doesn't build.. :(
This black and orange building is one of my old assets, I thought it fits nice in the background.
I'm surprised what Unity can do with an old mobile racing environment. This is actually my first time using reflection probes.
The scene includes open-source volumetric fog I downloaded from github, but I find that halos work better sometimes.
The red lights on the sides of the road are just a cloned texture with an alpha channel (where self-illuminated areas are white and the rest is black) applied as a secondary detail albedo in the standard shader. It would be a pain and extremely inefficient to make them shine otherwise. Or am I wrong?
P.S. I think I will be changing the mobile models with high(er) poly ones, as the current environment is a no go.
Finally I'm back to work.
I scrapped the first (clouds) section as it doesn't bring anything of value to the scene. I'm still working on the 3d section with the ruined city. Finished with the lighting and added one of the animated drones (bug) for testing. There are still particles to add here and there and I will probably change the layout of the ruins. As I said previously, once I finish the 3D work, I will breakdown the whole scene by its components. For now just a screenshot.
P.S. Oh, I updated the first section as well.


I edited and imported the city ruins I made 4 years ago. I think this view looks post-apocalyptic enough. Right now there's no "life", no aditional lights, etc. I also plan to add ash rain and a few animated drones. Once I build the final scene in 3D, I will cover each of the sections more in-depth.

Ok, the first concept is pretty much done. This is basically a terrain with low poly buildings, a spaceship from the asset store and a few particle systems I made earlier for my game. All covered in fog. I plan to make 3 sections in this scene - above the clouds, near the ruined city and ground view. All the lights and effects will be added later.

Veaceslav Zolotariov
TocanaDev - Artist
TocanaDev - Artist
Farrukh AbdurGreat final result :) Good luck .
Farrukh Abdur
2 months ago
3d Artist / 2d Designer - Artist
Great final result :) Good luck .
TocanaDev - Artist
BrettNice work! And you have a "bug" in yours as well! Very cool how it pops into view! And nice animation too man!
But the aperture uses animated UVs, so I don't think I will be able to import that anim to unity.. Doing it otherwise would break the bug's skin and there's no time to mess with it.
TocanaDev - Artist
BrettNice work! And you have a "bug" in yours as well! Very cool how it pops into view! And nice animation too man!
Thanks! I made this bug 3 years ago and decided to re-use it in this project. It actually has an animated aperture, which clicks when the bug looks at the camera.
2 months ago
3D Technology & Innovation Lead - Other
Nice work! And you have a "bug" in yours as well! Very cool how it pops into view! And nice animation too man!