Monday, December 29th, 2014 Posted by Jim Thacker

Gnomon ships new guide to games environment art

The Gnomon Workshop has released Environment Modeling and Sculpting for Game Production: a comprehensive guide to creating environment assets for videogame production.

Recorded by SCE Santa Monica lead artist Nate Stephens, and providing over five hours of training, the video explores the use of ZBrush for hard-surface modelling, including key toolsets like DynaMesh and IMM.

A comprehensive guide to environment work in ZBrush
In the video, Stephens creates a 3D temple scene, beginning from reference photography and blocking out the layout in Maya.

Having imported the base meshes into ZBrush via GoZ, Stephens sets up Polygroups, then begins to refine the models, working from low to high-frequency detail.

Once the hi-resolution sculpts are complete, Stephens retopologises the models, bakes normal and AO maps using xNormal, then shades and renders the scene in Marmoset Toolbag.

Although the tutorial is focused primarily on game art, the techniques are also applicable to environment work for visual effects or concept art.

About the artist
Nate Stephens is lead environment artist at Sony’s Santa Monica Studio, where he has worked on titles including God of War 3 and City of Heroes. He previously worked at Blizzard Entertainment and Cryptic Studios.

Pricing and availability
Environment Modeling and Sculpting for Game Production is available from The Gnomon Workshop as a digital download, price $59.

Buy Environment Modeling and Sculpting for Game Production from The Gnomon Workshop’s online store

Full disclosure: CG Channel is owned by the Gnomon School of Visual Effects.