Collection of Tech Art and Game Props

Collection of Tech Art and Game Props

Wannes Stroobandt
by wstroobandt on 31 May 2022 for Rookie Awards 2022

My passion is to create art using the best technical solutions I can think of. In this collection I'll guide you through some of the work I've created from september 2021 until today.

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Yosemite Valley - Procedural Landscape

The first projects I'm going to talk about is my procedural landscape generator. This tool was created using Houdini in combination with Unreal Engine 4. The setup for this landscape consists out of 5 HDAs:

1. The Terrain Load HDA loads in the cache file of the terrain from Houdini into Unreal Engine.

2. The River Tool HDA gives the artist the possibility to created a river in Unreal Engine with plenty of adjustable parameters.

3. The Cliff Tool HDA generates cliff meshes with tri-planar materials in Unreal Engine based on the slope of the mountains.

4. The Layer Allocation HDA assigns the correct materials and grass types to each landscape layer and blends these nicely using real-time virtual textures.

5. Finally, the Object Spawner HDA lets the artist input tree meshes and adjust their parameters so that the landscape gets populated by these trees, bushes, mushrooms, etc.

Procedural Materials

I recently picked up Adobe Substance 3D Designer and I immediately loved the non-destructive workflow it offers to create flexible PBR materials. Below are a few materials I created for my latest project, all rendered using Unreal Engine 5. I definitely want to dive deeper into these workflows in the future. 

Maya Python Scripts

The thing I probably love the most out of everything I've learnt so far is creating Python tools for 3D software packages like Autodesk Maya. I love automating tasks or using existing features to build a chain of operations making processes more efficient. 

Model Checker

I'm currently working on a script that is supposed to assist technical artist with checking models going from the modeling department of a studio to the texturing department, to lower the chances of a model getting sent back to fix some issues. The technical artist can specify for which issues to check and what the priority of a certain issue is. When executing, the script will output a report file listing everything that should still be fixed before going to texturing. Optionally, the user can also generate a turntable video where issues will be indicated on the model itself. I've included one of these turntables below that indicates non-manifold geometry as an example. 

Megascans General Improvements Script

This script is able to process a user's entire Megascans library in order to adjust the vertex colors as well as some other attributes. This allows for numerous improvements such as more realistic shader wind inside of Unreal Engine, moss growth against objects and better pivot placement. I wanted to make sure the script would run quite performant so processing an entire Megascans library wouldn't take long. To get an idea, processing a rock consisting of 30K triangles with all available settings enabled takes less than two seconds. 

Realistic Game Props

Finally, I wanted to include some realistic game props I made. Working on these learnt me a lot about the importance of layering very subtle details in order to create realism. 

DBAL-I2 - Dual Beam Laser

Improvised Briefcase Bomb

If you made it this far, I want to thank you for checking out Rookies 2022 submission! In case you want to check out my other work, feel free to go to my ArtStation or connect with me on LinkedIn

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