woensdag 1 mei 2013

I'm the boss!!

Hi there,

We've just released Burnin' Rubber 5 (BR5) about a week ago and we're very happy with all the positive feedback it's receiving. We hope all you guys have as much fun playing BR5 as we've had making it! 
Please note this post does contain some BR5 spoilers!!

A while back I posted about the creation of an epic boss for an epic game, now I can tell you it's the final stage/boss for BR5. When writing the post we just started on the 3D models and textures, now that the game is done I can show you a lot more about how we setup the files in 3ds Max. 

The final boss/stage is split into three files: one for the environment, one for the skybox and one for the giant boss vehicle we've named "the Crawler". 

The Environment file
The final battle starts off in the desert where the player approaches the giant Crawler in his car. His first task is to open the rear hatch by destroying two power generators within a time limit. 

We didn't want to create a huge desert environment and wanted to keep the file and download-size small so we only created a small tile-able desert model. This way it's easy to create an "endless" track.

Here's an explanation of the markers of the image above.
  1. Total triangle count for the desert environment
  2. A one sided "half pipe" model with a tiling cloud texture applied. In the final boss sequence we scroll this texture to simulate speed.
  3. A dummy object used as a location marker for the game's final credits. Dummy's aren't visible in-game but are only used as reference objects. Dummies don't contain a mesh but do have a position, rotation, scale and can even be animated.
  4. Invisible wall object to prevent the player from going places he shouldn't go. Hidden in game of course.
  5. Tile-able desert mesh
  6. Simple plane with a tiling and scrolling dust texture applied. This creates a simple dust wind effect.
The Skybox file
The skybox is a very important part of the final scene as it's mostly responsible for the tone and feeling.
In racing games like BR5 the player doesn't look up and down a lot but mostly into the horizon therefore we've used cylinders for our skyboxes. This way we don't spend texture space on sky areas you'll hardly see and they are also easier to create. :)

  1. Total triangle count for the skybox
  2. The skybox model
  3. Skybox position dummy
  4. Vertically tiling skybox texture. 

The Crawler file
This might be one of the most complex 3D files created in the history of Xform. In the image below you only see the outer shell and objects, there's loads more stuff on the inside.

To destroy this beast the player has to enter it through its rear hatch, drive up to the second level, battle four opponents continue to the third level shoot the Crawlers core and jump the exploding vehicle. Meanwhile the crawler's top detaches itself and starts flying. Crazy stuff!!

Here you can see how we set this file up. Open the above image in a new window to get a better view.
  1. Total triangle count for the crusher
  2. Crusher 3D model which is constructed of multiple parts. We use a lightmap on the second UVW channel to shade this beast.
  3. A dummy for a pick-up. Which pickup it will be is determined by the dummies name.
  4. A position marker to lure the player to this location where it will trigger a cut-scene when driving through. As you might notice the marker and some other objects like the engine flames have a black background. These objects will be set in-game to a different blending mode (additive) which "extracts" the black and makes the rest appear to be glowing.
  5. Scrolling arrows to guide the player in the right direction.
  6. This file has about 300 objects which can make it hard to keep track of things. This is why we group everything into layers which can easily be shown and hidden from view.
  7. All scene objects are listed in this window. It's crucial to name every object correctly!
  8. Dummy for a turret position
  9. AI vehicle position dummies
  10. Player respawn position dummy
  11. Al waypoint to guide the opponents through the vehicle
  12. An animated cut-scene camera
  13. The crawlers shadow. Real-time shadow's can cut heavily in the game's performance, this is nothing more then a simple texture of the crawlers shadow on a 3D plane. This plane will hoover just above the desert floor.
  14. The tracks. This isn't a complex animated mesh but just a small tile-able scrolling texture which give the impression of moving tracks.
  15. Invisible wall to prevent the player form going past the sides of the crawler.
I hope you've gotten some insight on how we setup our files here at Xform. If you want to see the crawler in action just take a look at this youtube video of one of our players or you can play it yourself online.

Have fun!


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