A few weeks ago I posted a 3d rendering of a 1935 Buck Rogers raygun that I modeled in Maya. The next step in this “American Maya Myth” project for Michael Nitsche’s class on virtual worlds is to export this 3d model to Unreal Editor 2 and create a playable environment to contextualize the object. After some deliberation, I decided to make my Unreal mod into a newsgame.
To those of you out of the know: this is a picture of Daniel Petric. He’s been tried and convicted for the murder of his mother and the attempted murder of his father. Why’d he do this? Because he’s bat-shit insane.
What set him off, though? His parents took Halo 3 away from him. When Petric went looking for his game disc in his father’s room, he found the game sitting next to his dad’s gun. So what did he do? He shot them.
This mod will basically be a map of a typical suburban cookie cutter house. At the beginning, your character will be standing near a couch with two “mom and dad” characters standing in front of him. In the system log some dialogue will go into why they’re taking Halo 3 away from you. Stepping forward (and onto a game trigger), the Halo 3 box and the two parents will despawn. You will then wander the house until you find your dad’s closet. When you step onto the gun (my raygun model) and the Halo 3 box, your character will be given one of the laser gun weapons from Unreal 2k4. This will also trigger your “parents” to spawn. Shoot them, game over.
Is this exploitative? Not really. It’s a school project, and it’ll be my first time doing rough animation and scripting in Unreal. Will it shed any light on the case? Not really. It’s a prototype of what could be a fairly informative piece if I had the time to actually work on this kind of stuff for a living (or at least for building a better portfolio in order to start earning a living). Ideally there would be image overlay (a la Graveyard) of the parents shouting at you and probably some triggers to change the wall textures into crazy people nightmare worlds (a la Assassin’s Creed). But this is only one of about 5 midterm projects I have due in the next week-and-a-half… so exploitative prototype it is. Wish me luck?
Objectives: Learn Maya; model the American Dream
Time: 20 hours
I ended up modeling the first Buck Rogers raygun toy from 1935. The original appears to have been made from a few solid pieces of molded copper. Texturing was a bit of a disaster. After a few hours of trying to get an automap for all the different little parts, I settled on a planar mapping with an extra texture for the detail work.
Keep poly counts low at the beginning, because you’re in vertex hell later on when you have to add divisions to round edges.
If you’re going to mirror geometry across the Y axis, never move vertexes around in the perspective view window; this will fuck you.
Save a separate file before texturing. Everything gets a lot harder when you get to this step.
So for Carl’s class I have to design an interactive map of a space that shows something about that space that wouldn’t be found on any conventional map of the area. I’ve decided to map the street I grew up on in Alpharetta, with pop-up maps of the “forts” that my friends and I played in. I’m thinking I’m going to make the map of the actual street relatively boring, or stale, or something. On the other hand the sections of the map where the forts are are going to pop up into richly described and (hopefully) visualized areas. Anyone have any cool ideas on how to do this? I think I’ll narrate everything from the voice of myself at around 10 years old, and future events on the street will probably be like, “Mr. Lloyd lives here. He is a really old man and I never see his wife. I think he will die when I go to college.”