Blog Entry 25/10/2016

Final Project Proposal


How Can I Create the Emotional Response of Trepidation in a Set of Game Ready 3D Models?

Development Blog URL:


Brief Outline of Work:

It can be demonstrated that specific shapes can invoke many different

emotional responses in a chosen audience. A lumbering Star Destroyer is a

primary example, factors such as sound, camera angle and most importantly the

shape work seamlessly together to leave the directors desired impression on

the viewer. It is, therefore, my goal to focus on and dig down on to understand

why it is that shape is so important, psychologically, when it comes to invoking

the emotional response of trepidation. I will then apply this knowledge in

modelling and texturing nine complete game ready spaceship assets.



My personal motivation for doing a dissertation in 3D modelling is my

enjoyment of films such as Star Wars and Star Trek; they produce such powerful

emotional responses on screen, and this is something I want to emulate myself

with this dissertation. The professional capacity is something which has also

informed my decision in which I must be able to link my dissertation to real-

world industry practice. To address this, I’ve chosen to target my models

towards a AAA studio which would be looking for fully completed spaceship

assets with a chosen platform being PC.  To further adhere to industry practise,

I’ll be LODing, my models, to further appeal to a studio looking for my spaceship

assets. My Academic sessions over the past two years have not only allowed me

to take on this dissertation, but they have allowed me to excel beyond and

answer specific design questions and how I can project specific responses in the

3D modelling I’m creating. This is why I want the challenge of getting

Trepidation (A fear of something that you expect to occur) from my models.


3D Modelling Software:

I’ll be using 3DS Max as my 3D modelling software. It’s been my chosen

software for three years now and is the one I’m most experienced with.


3D Texturing Software:

Over two blogs I’ve researched into which piece of 3D texturing software I

wanted to use. MudBox and Zbrush are the two I carried out research on based

on industry preference and came to the conclusion that Zbrush by way of ease

of use and preferableness that its was the tool I was going to use for the



Psychology of Shapes:

The research carried out into why specific forms invoke my targeted emotional

response is the basis for the design of my spaceships. I’ve informed my designs

on several differencing reference points, including those both from the film

industry, Star Wars and the games industry with Naughty Dog’s Crash

Bandicoot. This being that angular structures and that primarily the triangle

project a sense of wildness and unpredictability, this a crucial step towards

invoking my chosen responses.



My focus on professional AAA  complete assets informed me of the importance

of LOD models, and it effects on game performance.  My blog on “LOD Models”

informed me on the greater implications of the whys and hows of LODing a

model, in which, I found bugs and glitches to dig down to uncover the LOD

process happening in Elite Dangerous.


What I’ll present as my finished product;

Component 1: 3D Models:

My poly counts have been directly informed by my research carried out on

several AAA titles, namely Elite Dangerous and Star Citizen. Both games are

aimed at the higher end of the PC market and an older audience with more top

end computers. My blog “How many polys to use” goes into greater depth and

backs up the high poly counts I have chosen for this dissertation.


-3 LOD Battleships –

HIGH                                                MED                                               LOW

40,000 24,000 14,400

-3 LOD Destroyers-

20,000 12,000 7,200

-3 LOD Corvettes-

10,000 6,000 3600

Totaling = 9 Ships


Materials & Textures:

  • TBA number of discrete materials
  • Each material must contain a single diffuse colour map, specular map, AO, Displacement map and normal map. Self-Illumination if need be.
  • Texture maps will be 2048×2048 pixels


Component 2:

Renders:(Within 3DS Max)

  • Annotated with asset name, poly count.
  • 3 Renders for each of the high poly models
  • 1 Render for each of the Medium and Low Poly LOD models
  • 1 Render containing all three models of the ship type together

Totaling = 18 Renders 

Renders: (Within Unity)

  • 1 Render for each of the high poly LOD

Totaling = 3 Renders 

= 21 Renders

Market Place:

The best place for my models after completion is on the Unity Asset store; It’s a

professional outlet for people and businesses to get hold of your work. Though

my work is destined for particular AAA studio through a combination of design

choices, LOD, High Poly, Angular design It’s still best placed there, alongside its

presence on this website. Its cost is something I’m still yet to work out; my blog

covers more information on the Unity asset store as a suitable marketplace.


Employment Rationale:

This is something I addressed in a separate blog, about researching possible job

applications after my third year. It was important to discover the kinds of

experience games companies were looking for regarding technical skill with

modelling software and game engine experience. It was also important that I

found applications which matched my dissertation, meaning I could have

something directly relatable to said company. I’ve explained in greater detail in

my Job proposal blog and used several example applications.


Project Milestones

My project Milestones is something which is fundamental to setting myself the

time needed for the completion of my dissertation. The workflow I’ve set out

incorporates my knowledge of the period required for the four main sections of

modelling, The Design, Modelling, Texturing and Rendering. Following this

workflow ensures that I have adequate time to produce high-quality models.

2016 — 17 Week # Milestone Deliverables and Tasks
26 – 30 Sept Week 1 Research: Blog: Psychology of Shapes
3 – 7 Oct Week 2 Research: Blog:  3D Texturing Outline: Mudbox
10 – 14 Oct Week 3 Research: Blog:  3D Texturing Outline: Zbrush
17 – 21 Oct Week 4 Research: Blog: Sculpting A Galaxy
24 – 28 Oct Week 5 Research: Blog: Initial Concept Drawings
31 Oct – 4 Nov Week 6 Start Modelling My Ships from Drawings: Blog
7 – 11 Nov Week 7 Modelling: Blog: 3DS Max Update
14 – 18 Nov Week 8  Modelling: Blog: 3DS Max Update & Submission of Final Project Proposal
21 – 25 Nov Week 9 Modelling: Blog: 3DS Max Update
28 Nov – 3 Dec Week 10 Battleship Model Completed & Modelling: Blog: 3DS Max Update
5 – 9 Dec Week 11 Modelling: Blog: 3DS Max Update
12 – 16 Dec Week 12 Modelling: Blog: 3DS Max Update
19 – 23 Dec Modelling: Blog: 3DS Max Update
26 – 30 Dec Winterval

All Models Completed Untextured:

-UV Unwrap

-Pre-Export Checks


2 – 6 Jan
9 – 13 Jan Texturing: Blog: Import into Zbrush Update
16 – 20 Jan Texturing: Blog: Zbrush Update
23 – 27 Jan Week 13 Texturing: Blog: Zbrush Update
30 Jan – 4 Feb Week 14 Texturing: Blog: Zbrush Update
6 – 10 Feb Week 15 Texturing: Blog: Zbrush Update & Seminar Presentations
13 – 17 Feb Week 16 Texturing: Blog: Zbrush Update & Seminar Presentations
20 – 24 Feb Week 17 Texturing: Blog: Zbrush Update
27 Feb – 3 Mar Week 18 Texturing: Blog: Zbrush Update: Texturing Completed
6 – 10 Mar Week 19 Rendering Blog: Rendering Update/V-Ray/Unity Renders
13 – 17 Mar Week 20 Rendering Blog: Rendering Update/V-Ray/Unity Renders
20 – 24 Mar Week 21 Rendering Completed: Tidy scenes and folders for presentation & Create Questionnaire
27 – 31 Mar Week 22 Questionnaire/ Statistical figures taken on the models produced
3 – 7 Apr Week 23 Blog on the Results of the Questionnaire
10 – 14 Apr Spring Fertility Festival

Finalising of Blog Posts, Error Correction, Conclusions, Final Read Through’s

17 – 21 Apr
24 – 28 Apr Week 24 Submission of Final Product and Blog: by noon, Fri 28 Apr 2017


Annotated Bibliography


Arch Viz Camp. (2014) How to create simple yet realistic floor tiles in 3ds max - Arch Viz Camp. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 11 Oct. 2016). Tutorial for creating floor tiles inside of 3DS Max using Vray as a renderer.
Arno. (2011) LODs, do you recommend them? (online) Available at: (Accessed: 16 Sep. 2016).Description on the when’s and whys to using LOD models on your meshes.
Burgess, K. (2016) Exporting Textures out of Zbrush. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 11 Oct. 2016).Tutorial on how to export textures out from Zbrush
c64orinoco. (2015) Vulture model LOD / Reflection shader bug. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 19 Sep. 2016).Bugs and errors caused by the LOD models being swapped out in game.
CGPitbull. (2013) Asset Store. (online) Available at:!/content/11146 (Accessed: 23 Sep. 2016).Unity asset store example spaceship
CloudImperiumGames. (2014) Jobs - Cloud Imperium Games. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 19 Oct. 2016).An application which relates very closely to our university course, in terms of the modelling portion.
CV-Library Ltd. (2016) CV-Library. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 18 Oct. 2016).The Job search website I used for finding 3D modelling jobs
Datascope. (2016) 2D/3D Artist (online) Available at: (Accessed: 18 Oct. 2016).An application which relates very closely to our university course, in terms of the modelling portion.
Davies, J. (2016) World War Two Ships: Ship Types. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 16 Sep. 2016).Research into the types of ships which very used in WW2, but also present day
Edge-CGI. (2016) Zbrush for Beginners Tutorial. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 11 Oct. 2016).A beginner’s guide to learning the GUI and tools of Zbrush
Ekman, P. (2003). Emotions revealed. New York: Times Books.A look at what are the emotional triggers, and how you can express emotion through facial expresion
Forum.unity3d. (2009) What are Draw calls, Unity Community. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 19 Sep. 2016).A definition for what DrawCalls are
Gombrich, E. (1965) Art and illusion. (New York): Pantheon Books.Ernst Hans Josef Gombrich examines the history and psychology of pictorial representation in light of present-day theories of visual perception information and learning.
Grafskiy, J. (2016) Asset Store. (online) Available at:!/content/51185 (Accessed: 23 Sep. 2016).Unity asset store example spaceship
Jones, I. (2013) Polygon Counts. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 16 Sep. 2016).Research into the quantity of polys used in the industry
Kendricken, D. (2016) mudbox-3d-modeling-software (online) Available at: (Accessed: 3 Oct. 2016).An understanding to what MudBox is
Kmai. (2016) How to extract ship models from Elite: Dangerous (online) Available at: (Accessed: 16 Sep. 2016).Tutorial which allowed me to pull 3D models from games, Further research into the poly count in the industry presently
Lu, X. (2016) On Shape and the Computability of Emotions. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 26 Sep. 2016).Paper researching the correlation between the shapes we visualise and the emotions that they produce
Marshall, J. (2014) ZBrush or Mudbox: Sculpting Showdown. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 4 Oct. 2016).Industry preference to either Mudbox or Zbrush
MrDude. (2010) 3D model polygon count. How much is optimal. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 16 Sep. 2016).Further research into the poly count in the industry presently
OutplayEntertainmentLtd. (2016) Outplay Entertainment Ltd - Job Board. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 18 Oct. 2016).An application which relates very closely to our university course, in terms of the modelling portion.
Peterson, L. (2006) Sculpting a Galaxy. San Rafael, Calif.: Insight Editions.Lorne Peterson’s book about the design processes ILM went through on the original Star Wars trilogy
Pixologic. (2016) Home of ZBrush. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 3 Oct. 2016).Software company, Pixologic home to Zbrush
Sterritt, J. (2016) CRASH BANDICOOT (online) Available at: (Accessed: 26 Sep. 2016).Video documenting the shape language/reasoning behind Crash Bandicoot’s rise and fall in the games industry
Talyn. (2015) LOD model geometry. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 19 Sep. 2016).Bugs and errors caused by the LOD models being swapped out in game on the surface of planets in Elite Dangerous.
Tara Arts Movie. (2016) 3ds Max Tutorials V-RAY for Beginner. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 12 Sep. 2016). A tutorial in using V-Ray in presenting 3D Models with the addition of using HDRI images for added reflection.
Technologies, U. (2016) Unity - Manual: Draw Call Batching. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 19 Sep. 2016).Research into how Unity breaks up and deals with rendering using different types of DrawCalls
UstwoStudio. (2016) 3D Artist for VR Project. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 18 Oct. 2016).An application which relates very closely to our university course, in terms of the modelling portion.
Wiesmeier, W. (2016) Shape Psychology. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 26 Sep. 2016).Further documentation of shape psychology in the games and film industry
Wloka. M (2016) BatchBatchBatch. (online) Available at: (Accessed: 19 Sep. 2016).Some of the reasoning behind why large batches are bad for PC performance