Urban City: Providing Longevity to an Outdated Pack

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It’s been over a year since Urban City Pack has released and has continued to be our bestseller. Luckily, we have not abandoned this pack. It’s been on our mind.. it haunts us as night.. it’s the crying baby screaming “update me!” and just needs a bit of TLC.

We have been gathering a ton of feedback and now have a gameplan on how to tackle a major update for this pack! There are lots of features we have been adding to our newer packs like Medieval Village and Industrial City that make Urban City look outdated.

Here’s a quick summary of some things we have been tackling the past few weeks to give this pack longevity:
  • common scale pass on all assets
  • material pass
  • interiors! our biggest request and we have delivered 🙂
  • hyper-modular and level modular pieces
  • transparent windows to see those beautiful interiors now
  • addition of new signage (street, store fronts

Having to universally scale everything up or down to match a third person character size caused quite a bit of issues for the buildings. Modular/hyper-modular pieces ended up being off the grid and not match anything to the power of 2. Luckily with Unreal’s vertex snapping we were able to find a middleground solution that made it work. Another thing we are trying to sort out is a transparency issue on the windows. Since the concrete is connected to the window texture, the glass part has to be see through but this causes the concrete window sill to be see through as well.

We have a laundry list of other things we plan to tackle that will be announced once they’re started. Here’s a sneak peek at some of the work we’ve been doing. Everything is still work in progress.

Screenshots
Doing a quick test to see transprancy on the windows and into the interiors. We think this really adds depth to the buildings and more life. One thing we did to the municipality building was add more geometry to the exterior giving it a bit more “pop”
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Currently our windows are using an emissive texture to fake lighting in the windows. With proper window and interiors, you would be able to add an actual light inside and help sell the realism of your level.
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Shot of our interior shells, we’re looking into finding a good way to add interior walls but haven’t figured out the best solution just yet.
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Added a lot more corner pieces to make sure everything snaps together perfectly. We spent a lot of time cleaning up the hyper modular pieces. Once we scaled things properly, we noticed a lot of cracks on the walls and no corner pieces. We used a dirty trick to create them before by intersecting side walls together.
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Inside of the hyper modular walls
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Now that doors/interiors are enter-able, we had to thicken them and make sure they are two sided. We also modeled in a bit more detail such as the door handles since the player will walk right up to them now.
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Some new materials we have been playing around with. Higher resolution walls, ceilings, ground textures for the buildings. Most of the textures in the current pack are 1024×1024 so we felt it wouldn’t hold up in the future.
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Work in progress for some street signs being added to the pack. We felt like it’s a standard in most urban cities so it was a must add.
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Details up close! We used a height map mixed with a metallic map to give it that reflective look. The finer bumpy details come from a height map
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That’s all for now! All these fixes and new content will really add a breath of fresh air to this outdated pack. We will have more updates as this pack continues to be worked on.
Thanks for reading 🙂
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Medieval Docks: Dev Preview

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PolyPixel is back with another new pack named Medieval Docks! We’re continuing with the Medieval theme after releasing Medieval Village last month.

This pack has a darker theme featuring grungier assets, thatched roofs, and more dead foliage.

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WHAT IS THIS PACK?

While Medieval Village featured more of a booming area, Medieval Docks takes a step towards the shorelines where trades, farmers and boats reside.

It has a darker tone with grungier props, houses, and dock areas. The surrounding vegetation follows the theme with more dead branches, autumn type trees, and tall grass. Something we haven’t seen in most other packs are BOATS! We provided a few variations to help populate the shoreline.

The docks and foundation walls are all modular so users can mixand match to create a large shoreline area. There’s still lots to do but we feel the packhas a great tone and atmosphere already.

 

WHAT HAVE YOU DONE SO FAR?

  • greyblock and nailed down scale of demo level
  • set atmosphere and tone of pack
  • great start on the foliage
  • created modular docks and foundation parts
  • first pass of houses
  • first pass on boats

 

WHAT DO YOU PLAN TO MAKE?

  • polish/optimize the trees
  • add VFX & Audio to breath that extra bit of life into the world
  • bit more variation in houses
  • optimize scene with LODs, occluders, etc.
  • populate marketplace area

These are early shots made in Unreal Engine 4. Enjoy!

Screenshots

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This should be released on our own store sometime in October and Unreal Marketplace & Unity Asset Store in November.

For now, check out our other products such as Medieval Village which has just released!

Please leave a comment or question below, thanks for reading!

 

 

 

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Developer Spotlight: 138 Game Studio

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Old paper texture with some stains

Welcome to our very first developer spotlight! I love when we get emails about developer’s having great success using our packages and seeing all our stuff in their game. Jago came to me excited and announced his game Sniper Blacklist had been greenlit on Steam.

Sniper Blacklist is a third person action/adventure game in an open world setting. Long range shooting is the main feature of the gameplay.

My main objective when I develop the game is to give the players the real sensation of a sniper. patience, precision, orientation and training will be your best asset! – Jago

Video Demo:

Our team was excited to see our demo level from our Lake Side Cabin pack being utilized for something more than just a promo shot. Jago and his team were smart to quickly prototype their gameplay in a pre-made level to see how things would play out in a finished presentation. It looks absolutely amazing!

Screenshots

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Stories like these keeps our team motivated to keep making great products for indie developers. Sniper Blacklist should have a kickstarter very soon so please go out and support this!

Here’s some links to check out more about Sniper Blacklist:

Steam Page

Studio Website

Unreal Forum

If you have a game or prototype using our product and would like to be featured in our next developer spotlight, please email us at info@polypixel3d.com

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Product Release: Medieval Village

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Great news! We have just released our newest product Medieval Village which can be purchased here

Every pack we have been trying to add a new element that will give more value to the user. Post Apocalyptic World saw the introduction of interiors, Lakeside Cabin we added a hyper modular cabin.

With Medieval Village, we have BOTH those elements and included a whole lot more!

 

Here are just some of the features:

  • Ability to create multi-level floors with interiors – we give you both modular and hyper modular pieces that can be mixed and match to create an endless variety of buildings
  • Over 100 hyper modular pieces – create thousands of variations multi-level houses with windows, walls, stairs, roof, and floor pieces
  • Over 20 pre-built roof, main & mid floor pieces
  • 85 medieval props – huge variety of props to fill out your scene from crates, signs, fences, pottery and much more
  • About 10 vegetation props – trees, bushes, grass, carrots to help add some greenery to your scene
  • 4 tileable terrain textures – paint walkways and dirt paths, help break up ground with variation
  • LOD (level of detail) states for trees & props – allows for a more streamlined game that doesn’t bog down from a distance
  • Complete Support & Documentation – we make sure we update and support our products with quick email support and full documentation

Demos & Speed Level Test

 

Screenshots:

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Modular & Hyper Modular Buildings 

We’ve been listening to a lot of feedback from our previous products and customers want more customization. They love our quality of work but some of our assets lack the ability to create something that is truly unique in a game developer’s level. We believe the marriage of both modular & hyper modular pieces is the answer to create thousands of variations.

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High Quality & Quantity of Props

We spent an extra two weeks on this pack to build out the necessary props needed to make a medieval village level. However, our prop artists still spent the same amount of time creating each individual prop keeping the AAA quality we’re known for. One fun thing our team did after creating the initial set of props is ask ourselves “what else can this prop be?” A rice grain sack could become a closed sack, a 4 person table could be turned into a smaller 2 person table, etc. These simple variations allows the user to mix & match even more props without wasting more texture memory.

 

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Optimize, Optimize & Optimize

This is our biggest pack we have ever created yet it runs the smoothest! Optimizations such as LODs, occluders, compacted maps to save on memory, and clean shaders should ensure your game will run smoothly even with a large amount of assets.

 

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This is one of the only times we have released a pack with COMPLETE CONFIDENCE this is all we could have done. We went 2 weeks past our scheduled release date to make sure we gave everything we got.

Hopefully others can enjoy this pack as much as we had creating it.

For now, you can purchase the Unreal Package & Source Package on our store 

Purchase here

It has been submitted to Epic and should be in the Unreal Marketplace sometime this fall. The unity version will be released in a couple of weeks, stay tuned!

 

 

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Why Our First Product Was a Failure

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It’s been almost a year since we started content creation on the Unreal Marketplace & Unity Asset Store. We’ve learnt so much in every aspect – from what customers want, to improving quality in our art packages.

 

Looking back at our very first pack CountrySide, we hate to admit that it looks mediocre. It didn’t live up to the PolyPixel name and we had to do something about it.

CountrySide V1.0 Screenshots
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As you can see the tree quality was not good, the rest of the assets looked mediocre but not close to anything we have done in the last 3-4 packs.

 

Forum posts and reviews mentioned again and again the low quality of the trees & vegetation and it didn’t settle well with us. We felt like we cheated our customers of the potential of a high quality art pack and knew we had to do something about it.

 

Our team sat down and made a laundry list of things to do.  Here’s what we ended up fixing:

Version 2.0 Improvements:

  • Added 40 new trees
  • Improved global foliage material
  • Re-textured stone wall
  • Remade terrain material
  • Remade terrain textures
  • New demo scene
  • Added creek
  • Re-textured rocks
  • Added dozens of new flowers, weeds and grass
  • Added nature ambient sounds
  • Fixed legacy terrain

 

We just finished up LakeSide Cabin, our new nature environment pack, and learned a ton of new stuff on how to make better trees, ground plants, and rendering/lighting. This was the perfect time to update Countryside while we had momentum.

CountrySide V2.0 Screenshots
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The quality has been improved drastically compared to what it was a year ago. It was a great project for us to tackle as we’re able to see the growth in our artists and company over that time. But most important is being able to deliver a product our clients deserve.

 

We appreciate you, as our customer, giving us honest feedback even if it’s not always positive. It lets us know what’s working and what needs fixing. In the case of CountrySide, we listened to your comments and hopefully delivered with these major improvements. CountrySide V2.0 is our promise to you that we do not abandon our packs. 

 

Countryside V2.0 is available on our website and has been submitted for review on the Unreal Marketplace.

 

We plan to revisit Urban City as well in the next few months, stay tuned!

 

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Lake Side Cabin – Unreal Package Breakdown

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Here’s an in-depth video done by two of our artists Cody & Jonny showcasing everything that will be included with this 3D Nature Environment Pack. We decided to have two people in the video to add a bit more life and keeps Cody from rambling on all the time. Hope you guys enjoy!

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Lake Side Cabin – Sneak Peek

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Here’s a first sneak peek at our next pack! We’re taking a step back from Environments and letting our zen mode kick in with a nature pack.

We recently took a summer trip to our backyard up in Northern B.C. Canada. Seeing the beautiful mountains and trees inspired us to create this Lakeside Cabin pack.

WHAT IS THIS PACK?

This pack is our coniferous nature environment inspired by the backyard of Pacific NorthWest Rocky Mountains.

We want to give our users enough pieces to build a large scenic environment..boulders, trees, different ground plants, dock area, & terrain shaders. Our goal is to create a massive world that looks great and have it all running smooth at 60fps.

WHAT HAVE YOU DONE SO FAR?

  • lots of rawks!
  • most trees integrated
  • world machine terrain
  • built most of the man made props
  • Added a handful of ambient sounds to bring the world to life

WHAT DO YOU PLAN TO MAKE?

  • Polish/optimize the trees
  • Get terrain working 100% and looking great
  • Add VFX to breath that extra bit of life into the world
  • Bushes Bushes Bushes

These are early shots made in Unreal Engine 4. Enjoy!

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Continuing with our Zen Mode, here’s a time lapse of one of our artist building the scene in Unreal Engine 4. The music and work really puts me in a relaxing mood!

 

 

Please take a second to leave a question or comment below.

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Post Apocalyptic World: Unity Integration

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Hello everyone! A small update about Post Apocalyptic World here. We have integrated everything over from Unreal into Unity without much problems.

The only big difference is Unity doesn’t have a foliage tool that allows for pain-table vines like in Unreal.

You can purchase it from our Online Store Now!

Check out some media below from Unity

Screenshots


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Video

 

Sketchfab Models

 

Well this the last post for Post Apocalyptic World. We hope you’ve enjoyed it! Stay tuned for our next product called “Cabin in the Woods” (name is a work in progress)

Please take a second to comment below

 

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Launch Sale for PolyPixel 3D Store

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We have some exciting news. Our online store has officially launched!

 

Head on over to our SHOP to check it out.

Benefits of Our 3D Store

We understand customers may be wondering why buy directly from us vs. on the Unreal Marketplace or Unity Asset Store?

Here’s a list of benefits

  • receive 3 packages for price of one – for the same price as on content stores you will receive: Unity Package, Unreal Package, and source files
  • quicker updates – with other marketplaces there’s a long review process and sometimes critical updates can take days or even weeks to come out
  • early releases – as stated above, there’s a review process with content stores but our store releases our products instantly
  • bundled discounts – we will be bundling some of our products and passing onto the savings onto you!
  • free giveaways – for being loyal customers, we are giving away special products throughout the year

 

Launch Sale on NOW

All our products will be 30% off until June 30, 2015

Please use the code: LAUNCHSALE30 for all your purchases

CLICK HERE TO GO TO SHOP

 

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Post Apocalyptic World: Sneak Peek #2

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Hello everyone! This is a huge update and we’re excited to share things with you. The pack is ready and has been submitted to Unreal to go onto the trello board.

Our team couldn’t be happier with how this pack turned out. We believe this is our best looking product and hope to continue to keep up this quality. Thanks for reading and please take a second to leave a comment.

WHAT IS NEW?

Last update we noted that we had all our assets into a greblock stage. Everything is now finished the with proper materials, LODs, Collisions.

When we built out our asset list for Post Apocalyptic World, we said to ourselves “no way this all gets done”. Our team proved us wrong by working hard and efficiently and got way more than we could have imagined. We believe we tackled the big items and hit home runs with quantity AND quality.

WHAT IS OUR PROCESS?

We’ve been trying to think in terms of how a customer might use the pack and how we can build out our assets to make it as easy as possible for them. One new method we’ve been trying is building out speed levels to see how all our assets would work if someone were to build out a level from scratch.

 

Here’s the video below of our test:

One problem we had before was trying to add too much tech into our packs. This took away from our art and created more technical issues than us providing high quality art.

We understand that our customers may not come from an art background so anything that feels too technical or art related, we’ve tried to simplify it

Screenshots:

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WHAT IS LEFT TO DO?

With Unreal Engine 4 out of the way, we now need to apply the same treatment to Unity. With Unity 5 things are much more similar to UE4, but there’s still quite a bit of differences that have their own headaches. We have our own in-house tools to make processes easier but like any art the Unity pack needs its own TLC. Stay tuned for the next post about our Unity updates!

 

 

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