Hello my name is [TWDEV] Brrr, a modeller and texture artist on the Traction Wars team. On this the second of my devblogs I will be discussing military asset construction.
On various maps in the game it is integral to add a sense of character and depth to the environment, and a sense that a war is being fought in its vicinity – naturally as a result a wide array of military objects are needed. In this particular case a 100mm cannon was required to decorate the interior of a concrete bunker gun position.
The gun in question is called the Skoda houfnice vz 14 100mm, a relic of the First World War used by the Czech forces – hundreds of these old cannons were captured in the early years of the war as Germany swept eastwards. Due to the outdated design the guns were put to more menial non essential tasks such as gun battery positions rather than full front line service.
Due to its high level of polys, lod models (level of detail) were essentially to help the optimisation of the asset. The asset consisted of four models: the render mesh (high detail model), lod1,lod2 and the proxy. Lod1 is usually approximately half the poly count, lod2 being half again – i.e. a quarter of the total poly count of the original full detail model.
This particular asset has not one function, but two. Along with providing an interesting backdrop to the bunker it will also acts as an objective for the British forces on the map. It is the task of the British forces to disable the cannons with the use of explosives – it is the aim of the German forces to protect them at all costs.
Further additions were made such as an altered texture and most importantly the use of dirtlayers, in cryengine 3 dirtlayers are applied by first painting onto the model the location of where you want the dirtlayer to show on the model – black is where the dirtlayer will show the strongest and in the white areas the dirtlayer will be totally transparent. Once in-engine the dirt layer can be selected in the material tab.
For this I chose a singed burnt tileable texture to overlay on-top of the damaged area of the model to further sell the effect of a disabled 100mm cannon – this tileable texture was tiled by a factor of four to ensure a high quality resolution finish.
For the final placement on the map, the gun itself will need to be scripted to allow it to be interactive rather than a standard piece of geometry. It being an scripted object in this case will enable it to be destroyed by the attacking team players with explosives.
Finally for further finishing touches to the scene, accompanying objects where created, in this case ammunition boxes and 100mm shells. These were placed in around the gun to effectively sell the scene visually. One cannon on its own would look rather odd in an empty bunker so small objects like this are essential in selling the effect of a habited operational gun room – as well as being useful in other scenes on a wide array of other maps . The finished gun room panorama can be seen below.
I hope you enjoyed this particular devblog, but that’s it for this time, if you have liked what you have seen and would like to share your thoughts about the game or just get involved in the community you can visit our forums. You can also keep up-to-date with current development and news via the social networking links below.