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Modelling my favourite mythological beast
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Modelling my favourite mythological beast

Gareth Sealy
by GSealy on 2 Dec 2020

A summary of my experience working on the emerging tech project at UTS Animal Logic Academy 2020. Inspired by Greek Mythology and Sony Santa Monica's God of War series.

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Update - 2 Dec 2020

For our emerging tech individual team projects halfway through the year at UTS Animal Logic Academy 2020, I helped pitch an asymmetrical multi-player game set in Greek mythology called 'LabARynth'. This would utilize the incredible Unreal 4 game engine as well as Quixel's Megascans to efficiently look dev and prototype our game. The emerging tech aspects were implementing VR and AR, making the game accessible to most users, as high-end gadgets such as VR headsets and Hololens are pricey, users who didn't have access to these devices could use AR on their mobile phones and First Person on their PCs. The idea was to 'bridge the gap' in an entertaining and innovative way. 

' LabARynth' team member Jason Capili's awesome promotional material for the game. 

My favourite of all Greek mythological beasts is the Minotaur, a half-man half-bull hybrid, before this course I didn't have much experience 3D modelling and sculpting bipedal characters. A video tutorial series I highly recommend is 'design and Anatomy' by Rafael Grassetti he is a professional Z Brush artist, he also worked on God of War (2018) designing the characters and creatures in the game. Raf's tutorial series helped me with sculpting the Minotaur's human anatomical landmarks of the body, for the Minotaur's head my Creative Lead at the academy Alex Weight helped with quickly photoshopping images for me to reference. I'll never forget Matt Estela's feedback every time he saw my model's progress "Make the head bigger!" 

This was the first pass of the Minotaur, beginning the process by sculpting a dynamesh sphere in Z Brush and shaping the basic forms before adding any detail. The feedback from the leads at this stage was he looks like a cool monster but.."That head needs to be bigger!"

The head also needed to look more like a bull and less like a monster.

Once I'm happy with the final version of the Minotaur for the game thanks to the constructive feedback from my leads next I imported a retopologised OBJ into Substance Painter for surfacing. To be honest I was very new to this app but soon fell in love with the non-destructive workflow of using layers and masks similar to photoshop. Quixel Megascans was also a great source of finding the appropriate materials for my Minotaur.

Currently, I'm adding more detail to this character and remaking geometry that was too thin in the final version such as his pauldron armour made up of fallen heroes helmets and macabre collection of skulls hanging from a chain on his neck.

I loved working on this project because not only am I fan of Greek Mythology but I love the God of War series by Sony Santa Monica. The reaction from industry guest judges was positive, even though it wasn't successful as a project we'd continue to work on for the rest of the year I'm proud of what our small team achieved in a short time and hopefully, I'll revisit this project in the future.

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