Into the mud.

Well,things have been slow going this past week but wouldn’t necessarily say that’s bad.

I have spent much of my limited free time this week reading several books on Mudbox and Maya. I have  touched Mudbox once before… a year or more ago. This week changed that.

As I began talking to people who work in the game industry it has become clear that normal mapping is well… *cough* the norm of the industry. I also realized that I knew very little about normal maps, thankfully this is a time of change.

I took some time to think about the first time that I really noticed normal mapping. I remember reading an article in game informer way back in 2002-2003. There was an interview with  John Carmack and was talking about some new way to fake geometry with very sophisticated texture mapping… and something to do with per-pixel lighting. (At that point it was way over my head to even think about such things.)

Id's Doom 3 Imp
Id's Doom 3 Imp, in all it's awesomeness.

I realized recently that Doom 3 was the first game I played that had normal mapping as a feature. Found my old disks and I have been going through playing and really looking at the game. It’s been proving to be a valuable piece of learning software.

To say I felt little inspired would be a bit of an understatement. I opened Maya and Mudbox. I quick put together a very low poly form for an Imp of my own. For this being my second time opening Mudbox I feel pretty good about the results.

My Doom 3 Imp
My version of a Doom 3 Imp. Made from low poly mesh below.
My Doom 3 Imp low poly mesh that I exported to Mudbox. This is what I started with.

I am still learning with both of these programs and I look forward to continuing to do so.


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