Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Pohatu Posing

Ok, I swear Onewa comes soon, but I wanted to make a post about my progress and how I plan to/already have rigged the models.

It's very simple because the pieces don't have to have weights painted. In fact, the only Bionicle with flexible parts is the matoran (like Hafu) which I'll do a smooth bind with the arms.

Instead of binding the skin on Pohatu, I parented each part to the corresponding bone which allows me to move the bone without any problems in the animation. Technically the skin isn't bound, but I can still use IK handles and FK for animation. When making Pohatu, I simply rotated each part individually considering that none of his parts have joints, etc. However, when it comes to actually animating him, I'll put bones in his knees to have added articulation.

I tried to pose Pohatu similarly to the cartoon version, but found some things didn't match up perfectly. This is probably because of the inaccuracy of the drawing and the artists' liberties (considering Pohatu is also missing the four pegs in the side of his legs). Either way, I was pleased with the result of the pose.

 I added a detail map of brushed metal from Google to see how it would turn out and was incredibly satisfied with the outcome. I'm not used to using detail maps, mainly because my final product will be in UDK and thus, the detail will be incorporated into the diffuse as well as a normal map.

Now, there is just one thing missing from Pohatu, and that is the hole for his mouth which I am well aware that I did not include. In fact, when I do the sculpt, I will add it in and bake it into the normal maps. After Onewa, I may take a break from modeling new pieces and texture Hewkii, make a skeleton for the Matoran, and begin the sculpting for the normal maps on the current models. The Maha was for fun, but if I feel like it, I may texture him too. After all, he is a part of the town environment.

Because of how Pohatu is progressing, I am newly inspired for this project and am no longer reaching the end of my rope (doing those pieces individually was tiring). Making the masks and parts for Tahnok will be fun and I am very excited for it. Also, I recently have looked into an article for using gradient maps for UDK instead of diffuse. I am intrigued with this and am considering using that for the Po-Wahi and Po-Koro.

For the gradient maps article/post, check here:

I've noticed that I'm actually getting a lot of readers every time I post a blog and I wanted to thank everyone for the support.