I am personally surprised by the amount I have learned and achieved for the for this first year at university, with the help of my peers and teachers I have managed to get a firm grasp on what I would like to do in the future. There are a few achievements that I am particularly pleased with, and I’m sure that they will be very important in the future.
Animation has been quite a difficult subject for me, especially in rigging correctly and effectively. For modelling and animation I use the program called Blender, this particular program is known for it’s manual nature, meaning that it would not aid me in creating anything, only giving me base shapes, armature bones and a verity of tools. This means that making a skeleton for my character proved awkward and generally difficult. Despite all of this I have managed this year to get a firm grasp of how to rig as well as animate, creating various animations that went towards the creation of my game. Below is an example video of one of the animation loops.
I have always had a very simple idea of how to UV map a texture onto a particular model, however this year I seem to have developed a higher interest and knowledge on how to UV map in more interesting and effective ways. Before I started the course I was content with putting a texture plain on a model, using the basic Blender render engine, but I have been experimenting with the Blender cycles render engine, which makes use of nodes to add effects onto textures. For example, if I where to make a wall with a stone brick texture, I could give the texture a bump map to add an extra layer of depth, as well as an extra node to effect roughness. Although this process is time consuming, it ends up being worth the effort.
The Unreal Engine
Due to the unreal engine coming out free fairly recently, I have not had that much experience with it, and at the start of the year I found it too large and confusing so I left it until I had made enough assets. As soon as I had created a couple of houses and exported them to the unreal engine, I found I was piled with error messages, this forced me to explore the engine and learn what was where, despite it taking weeks to figure out the problems. As I kept on moving meshes into the engine I found myself becoming more and more familiar with the interface. In order to become familiar with the character blueprints system I began a fresh blueprint, instead of using the existing ones. This might of been a mistake to do at the present time, however it greatly helped my understanding in how everything works, despite me constantly running into constant troubles.