Once I discovered that UE4 was capable of dynamic Global Illumination my head nearly exploded! I went about implementing it and found it was a mixed bag of results. Sifting through forums for information on this feature reveals that it is still in experimental stages and may have been abandoned. Unfortunately, in its current state the quality just isn’t there compared to baked lighting.
I was able to get acceptable results under certain situations…
…but problematic for the most part.
It seems that you can have good results for outdoor environments but you’ll run into problems with light-bleeding and other artifacts in an outdoor/indoor scene. So at this point in time, I’m just going to go back to what I was doing before because dynamic GI out-of-the-box is a no-go for me. q_q
If you remember, in the UDK version of the project, I had implemented a fully dynamic lighting system with a 24-hour day and night cycle:
It looked really nice for the outdoor areas but I had run into a few issues with indoor lighting that I never disclosed. Fully dynamic lighting does not support proper global illumination and while it is cool in many ways, it just can’t look anywhere as good as baked lighting (even when using tricks and workarounds to fake it) Over time, I accepted that I wouldn’t have any nice light bouncing or subtle shadows and was content with it.
Shortly after I posted the last update, I started to re-implement that same dynamic light system into UE4. I succeeded in doing so fairly quickly and I was happy about that. However, I also started to play around with UE4’s Lightmass Global Illumination and I got a much, much better result. I’ve decided that I will be discarding the fully dynamic lighting system because it looks like a shaved asshole compared to UE4’s baked static lighting. Since this version of Out Of Hell will be a bit closer to the original than the previous projects, the whole day/night cycle thing is not really needed anymore.
Please note, everything is a temporary placeholder for prototyping purposes. The Lightmass GI settings are not final and will have even better quality in the final version. This is merely to illustrate the differences between the two systems.
I’ve also adopted a new method of building the levels. Before, I would build the level itself out of BSP and flesh it out with staticmeshes. Now, I lay down a rough shape of the level with BSP in UE4, export that into my modeling program and use it as a guide to build the level. When it is all done, the entire map should be made of staticmeshes.
Building the entire level in an external modeling program offers me more tools, way more control and it is much faster as well. Yay for progress!
EDIT: July 3, 2016 – Looks like I spoke too soon! I was able to get dynamic lights to work and have some pretty nice-looking Global Illumination with Light Propagation Volumes! I’ll post screens in the next update!
When I was working on the original Out Of Hell I remember someone asking something along the lines of “Why are there no female zombies?” and the short answer to that is because I am a lazy bum that didn’t want to put in the extra work. Eventually I did and added one single, solitary female zombie model to the game.
Well folks, this time Grinwood will be populated by more than just one female zombie model! This time, I give you……………………………….TWO!
Seriously though, with the modular setup I’ve done, the engine should do a pretty nice job creating a lot of variety in the way each monster looks! YAY FOR MODULAR!
Just a little tidbit to tide you over until the environment screens that are coming down the pipe! You’ll be dealing with these slow-moving types in large numbers so pack your melee weapon of choice and some hand sanitizer!
(As an aside note, please do keep in mind that all the art up until now will change later down the line when I add the final details to the game. I’ll be coming back to them and adding tears in the clothes, cleaning up the textures, optimizing and/or adding more geometry where needed etc.)
Some old, familiar faces are returning to the town of Grinwood in all their rotting glory! It’s nice to see them all again but keep your distance; you still wouldn’t want to give any of them a hug.
The nice thing about the material setup in UE4 (and UDK) is that it allows me to randomize textures on the models and so I’ve built them in a modular fashion. Textures and parts are able to be switched and swapped out by the Engine each time you play so there will be way more variety. The way it used to be done in the original OoH was that each monster had one set of textures applied to the entire model. Basically, the way it’s done now is that the model is divided into parts such as ‘Head’, ‘Shirt’,‘Pants’,‘Body’etc. and each ‘part’ will have a number of different but corresponding textures which the Engine randomly picks out of the pool and assigns to the model. This concept is applied to a lot of other things in this game as well to ensure a slightly different environment each time it’s played.
Of course, it is still quite a ways away from the final polishing phase but at that time I’ll do a couple more art passes and either cleanup, fix or add more details to all the visuals.
I’ll be adding a few more of our undead friends in the next update so come back soon!
I’ve had some free time here and there so I squeezed out as much work as I could and this is the result! Some What-in-the-H-am-I-looking-at monsters! Now, I’ve got just a handful of creature reveals left; most of which are original OoH zombies revamped! I can’t wait to show all the fans of the original OoH what has become of their beloved dead-heads!
Also, a thing to keep in mind is that most of the monster names I’ve shown so far are what some of the characters in the gameworld will call them BUT there is backstory and alternative names to these creatures; all of which will be described in detail when you find the Daemonicon Ictrama! (for those unfamiliar, this was a Demonic Tome hinted at in the original game) I loved writing the lore and coming up with the names for these demonic creatures. If you’re into that sort of thing, prepare to be immersed in it!
I’ve also got a bunch of NPC characters but I won’t be revealing those any time soon because I have to maintain some element of surprise.
You know, speaking of surprises, I’m surprised that for some reason there is still a small part of me that just resists learning new things. I don’t know why that is but it happened way back when with the whole modding process, level design, Unreal Editor, programming and so on but most recently; ZBrush sculpting.
In the long run I have never regretted taking out the time to learn these things so why is there still this little voice that says “Bah, it’s too much work! Bah, just hire someone else to do it! Bah, learning sucks!”
Though I am nowhere near any level of mastery with the techniques or tools that I use, I have always been able to do what I needed when I needed so I don’t know where this resistance comes from.
P.S Learning does NOT suck!
Hello everyone! I’ve just had the absolute pleasure of doing a nice Q&A with Ragequitters! There are some really great questions here that should provide a little more insight into what you can expect out of the new OoH.
A huge thank you to Gregs2k and the folks over at Ragequitters for this opportunity!
So, what have I been up to since the last update? I’ve been working a lot (job) since it’s now the busy season again but that will change and return to normal early on in the New Year when we should experience a bit of a lull.
I also managed to learn a sculpting program (about a month ago) in only a short period of time and this means that I no longer have to wait for or hire another artist to sculpt the fine details; I can just do it on my own now. This is another tool I can add to my toolshed!
I’ve also brought back some classic OoH monsters that you will recognize (they weren’t included before) so once they are painted and fully textured, I’ll be adding those to the site.
You may have noticed that the forums are gone as well; it actually got auto-deleted due to lack of activity and because I was so busy, I never saw the notification email when it was originally sent. This is alright though because eventually I will have to give Out Of Hell it’s own website, seperate from the Blog. When that time comes, I’ll implement a new, fresh forum!
I hope everyone has a great Holiday Season! Merry Christmas and I’ll see you all in the New Year!