vrijdag 26 november 2010

Turning 2D into 3D

Dear readers,

I've been waiting for artists to continue my work on the platform game, but they were all put on other projects. So it was just me working on the platform game, which is not very exciting. In the meantime I've been working a little bit on a side-project, something that would be useful for the level designers. The levels for our platform game are in 3D and currently our artist Matthew has little bits and pieces that he has to copy and put together to make a level. Only in the 3D program we're using this is not a fast process. Matthew suggested using a 2D tile-program and then converting the 2D tiles to 3D as in the 2D tile-program you can create the level much faster. Good idea, but easier said than done of course. So I investigated a little to see if it would be doable within a short amount of time because if it takes me more time than Matthew gains by it then it might not be worth doing. But I was able to do it within one day and it works nicely and gives us a quick and easy way to make levels. The level designer no longer has to attach vertices himself or detach the grass objects on top. On conversion I also made it so that each disconnected piece of ground becomes an object which makes the game run more efficiently (as we can choose not to display ground objects which are not in the player's view). The level designer will still have to place custom items manually in the 3D program, but the 2D is very nice for quick prototyping.

Test level designed in 2D map editor:









 Converted to 3D:









I think I took more time programming this than if it was all done manually, but I learned more about scripting in the 3D design-program we're using plus the names of objects are always correct. So it's very useful :)

-- Stijn

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