The Construction of Sampson's Grotto
These images show a layout for the first two floors of Sampson's Grotto, a short "teaser" style trailer that walks through these areas, some works-in-progress that showed how Carbon Scatter was used to flesh out early stages of the environment, and finally a large selection of stills from the video. All elements of environment construction, including models imported into Carbon Scatter for use in ecosystem population, were created by myself.
Escaping Sampson's Grotto
Software: 3D Studio Max, Photoshop, Carbon Scatter
Class/Project/Team: 3D Modeling & Animation
When Created: Fall 2010
This environment, created in Fall 2010, was part of project in which we were to develop a simple game from scratch, prepare a series of artistic assets and concept drawings, and produce a modeled environment based upon the first two levels of the game. All work was too be fully original and for our Final we were to develop a "teaser" trailer for the game, the sort that is used to entice viewers into wanting to play our fictional game.
This particular environment was a bit of an adventure because it was at this time that E-On Software was offering an open Beta program for their brand new software, Carbon Scatter. By now I had used Vue for years, and I knew that if I could populate my environments with ecosystems based on my own customized meshes, I could quickly give the environment life and create the appearance of a truly run-down series of ruins. The stills that show my environment development in weeks two and four, above, give a glimpse of what these environments might have become. Unfortunately, the weather was hot, and I had less than two days to put in final revisions and fully render out the animation, so I was not able to utilize the higher rendering functions that would have put the Carbon Scatter ecosystems into the animation for my Final. Alas! When I went to re-render the scene in cooler weather a few weeks later, the serial numbers for Carbon Scatter had expired and the open Beta had ended. And so, my practice with Carbon Scatter came to a rather abrupt conclusion.
As with most of my school projects, this environment came with a wide variety of challenges beyond those of Carbon Scatter. Although I was becoming used to creating customized textures for fully fledged environments, this was the first time that animated elements were built into the environment and integrated into part of the animation, and many of the props I made were more complex than those I had made previously. Each of the rooms had a specific purpose according to the game design I created, and each of the props were designed to play a role in how the game progressed. It was one of those projects where we really started to learn how the pieces fit together. My only regret was that we did not have the time to build our environments into fully playable games!