Project Destruction

An arena shooter with destructible walls and buildings that I made with a large team of programmers and artists

I was in charge of making trees and particle effects

During our final year of university, every video game arts and programming major is tossed into a room where we are told to have one goal in mind:

We work together and make a game by the end of the year.

This kind of group project is fairly common to most; however, we do not split into small groups. We, as in all 40 students, develop our own concept, design, leadership roles, and figure out how to best implement each part to adhere to the design. The class is not only created in a way that we have the opportunity to experience what it might be like to work in a large company setting, but also so that we understand how to manage tasks when there are so many working on the same project.

While each student rose to the challenge in their own way, I decided to take the year to learn more aspects of game development such as creating trees and particle effects. Unfortunately, as the focus of the beta was on destructible walls and buildings, and to make up for the final time crunch, the trees ended up being removed last minute. However, my particle effects survived the final testing. This was incredibly satisfying, as I learned so much about them throughout the project.

These are a couple of examples of my first texture materials I created for the project. Their coloring is because of Unreal’s ability to implement color within its own particle engine, so keeping them grey allows for quick adjustments within the engine rather than constantly exporting from Photoshop.

At first, I only created the texture materials for our particle programmer to implement, but I soon found myself working alongside him in creating how the materials functioned within Cascade, Unreal’s particle engine. After understanding my wide variety of options for particle functionality, I started creating more complex material networks within Unreal and using nodes already provided by the game engine.

For example, in the particle presented above, I utilized a 3D shape with the laser being a scaled cylinder while the particles depicting the intake and outtake of energy are created from a simple circle material node within Unreal.

Some of the trees I made:


Software used:

  • Unreal Engine
  • Maya
  • Photoshop
  • SpeedTree

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