This Masterclass Includes
- Step-by-step instructions
- Over 20 hours of video lectures
- Course Files
- Certificate of Training
- Teacher Support
- 6 Personalized Feedback Moments from your Dedicated Teacher – get the same kind of feedback you’d receive at a game studio or campus classroom!
What You’ll Learn
WHAT YOU’LL LEARN
This Masterclass teaches you how to model props for AAA games, focusing on key assets and hero pieces. With the recent improvement in hardware and game graphics, the quality bar for key assets has raised considerably and what was considered excellent just a few years ago is today not up to standard. So what is the difference? How can we achieve the level of quality we see in current AAA games? What makes the models so believable and appealing?
Using the example of a prop (crossbow) for a AAA game (Witcher 3), we’ll address these and other related questions as I teach you how to approach the process of creating game assets with AAA quality.
AT THE END OF THIS MASTERCLASS YOU WILL
- Understand what makes a high quality asset for AAA games;
- Understand why deep knowledge of the subject and game world is so important, and be able to apply this knowledge to make your assets tell a story;
- Follow a professional pipeline to create your own assets, just like in a real game studio;
- Incorporate quality checks into your work;
- Be able to create professional game models, with optimized topology;
- Understand the impact of PBR and lighting in the game topology;
- Know how to create optimized UV sets;
- Be able to create unique textures, suited to your game and visual style;
- Know how to create custom textures, alphas and masks;
- Know how to work with multi-material assets;
- Know both how to model and paint normal maps;
- Be able to create professional quality textures that bring your model to live;
- Export your work into the game engine;
- Have the knowledge and skillset to apply this same process to your own models;
- Receive a printable Certificate of Training.
One of the most frustrating aspects of e-learning is the lack of interaction with the instructor. When you get stuck with a step you can’t follow, something you don’t understand or an instruction that just doesn’t work for you, there’s nothing to do but give up. And it’s a horrible feeling. I know, I’ve been there myself.
That’s why I strongly believe in teaching courses, not tutorials. I believe that having the means to contact the instructor and the rest of the class is fundamental to a fulfilling learning experience: not only it avoids giving up because you’re stuck, but it also allows you to go in-depth on a subject, ask questions, want to know more. Not to mention the feeling of belonging, of being part of a learning community. Of not being alone.
When you sign up for a course at Game Art Unboxed, you’re immediately signing up for instructor assistance as well. There are many ways you can interact with your instructor and the rest of the class. I usually answer within 48 hours and will do my best to help you any way I can:
Scheduled Feedback: At the end of each key moment of your course, there is a scheduled feedback where you can submit your work in progress for individual and personalized feedback from your instructor. This is also a great oportunity to ask questions and highlight any points which are still not quite clear for you.
Via the course forums: where you can ask related questions, show your work, or bring up interesting facts and shared knowledge you find interesting;
Emailing the teacher: when you want to ask questions where a public forum isn’t the best solution.
Have a question right now? Use the form below to get in touch or email me at nataskastatham @ gameartunboxed.com
Via Our Facebook Group: for casual posts and discussion. Unfortunately Facebook is not the best format for asking workflow-specific questions, so if you need extra help with the course itself, please use the course forums instead.
* Please note that spamming, abusive behavior and trolling will not be tolerated and might result on your account being suspended. Game Art Unboxed is a learning environment, and we ask all students to respect each other and keep the tone polite at all times. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.
About the Instructor
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR
Nice to meet you 🙂 My name is Nataska Statham, and like you I have a passion for bringing games to life with beautiful models and animations. I also happen to love teaching, and believe that everyone has the potential to become a game artist. And yes, that includes you!
I started working with games in the early 2000s with a focus on 3D modeling and animation; my list of published titles include: Battlefield 3, Kane & Lynch 2, Alan Wake, Battlefield: Bad Company 2, ArmA and many others. Over recent years I’ve fallen in love with teaching, taking a position as a game art instructor at the Uppsala University, in Sweden. During this time I have won an award as Teacher of the Year and have been nominated for the same award a second time. But what I’m really proud of are the hundreds of students who I’ve had the pleasure of teaching that went on to become professional game artists and create amazing games and visual worlds.
That’s where Game Art Unboxed comes in: I want to offer you the same opportunity, regardless of where you live, what your background is or previous experience. As long as you have a decent enough computer and access to the basic software, I can help you with the rest.
Like many of you, I also struggled with learning options when I was starting: I grew up in a small town in Brazil where there was no access to a game development or game art education, let alone a game studio. I also had to learn on my own, sifting through the few available books and tutorials at the time. But I got lucky and was fortunate enough to have companies that took a chance on me and wonderful mentors that taught me more than any classroom ever could. And that’s the experience that I want to return here at Game Art Unboxed.
My courses are based on classroom-tested curriculum. I teach you step-by-step how to become a professional Game Artist following industry standard techniques. My areas of expertise include: 3d modeling, rigging and skinning, character modeling and animation, capturing and animating with motion capture. With the support of my students and our learning community, I’m constantly working on more courses and new content so that you too can become a Game Artist.
Hope to see you on a course soon,
Most online tutorials teach you how to model a specific asset only, but courses at Game Art Unboxed are different. As an instructor, I believe in enabling my students – you – to achieve your own dreams, and I know that means different things to different people. It’s the old story about teaching you how to fish, instead of just handing out the catch of the day.
When you take a Masterclass at Game Art Unboxed, my focus is on teaching you a specific skill-set in depth. In this case, how to Model Props for AAA Games. We’ll use a weapon (crossbow) for the Witcher 3 game as an example for going through the process of modeling props for AAA games, in the process learning:
- What is the quality bar for a AAA game? What makes AAA models so special?
- How can you incorporate the AAA standard of quality in your own work?
- Why research and a deep understanding of your subject and game world is so important?
- How does a pipeline for creating props/ unique assets/ hero pieces work? What are the quality checks to make sure you’re on the right track?
- What details should you model on the mesh, and when should you use texture only?
- How to create AAA quality meshes with clean tesselation/ topology?
- How to obtain smooth, high quality normal maps?
- How to create unique textures that fit with your visual style?
- How to tell a story with your texture?
- How to add aging and wear and tear in a believable and visually appealing way?
- How to make your model pop, with high level of appeal and believablility?
- And most importantly: How can you apply this same knowledge to other assets?
Throughout this Masterclass, we use the crossbow as a means to discuss each aspect of the asset creation pipeline and decision-making process. It’s as if I’m sitting by your side, sharing with you knowledge, tips and tricks acquired in over a decade working with some of the best artists in the game industry. This is the kind of information you can’t get from a book, manual, or tutorial – but only from an experienced artist who is willing to show you the ropes. Which is exactly what I’m here to do.
All of the lectures are visually based, in HD video that you can watch at your own pace. When we’re discussing practical aspects in the software, there are no shortcuts or hidden steps – I go through each step of the process with you, in real-time, so you can see exactly how I would approach each little extrusion and brushstroke. We also discuss common mistakes, why they happen, and how we can fix and avoid them.
Throughout this Masterclass we have 6 scheduled feedback moments where you’ll receive personalized feedback on your own work, making sure that you’re progressing well and addressing any problems as they develop. That means you’re not only gaining new knowledge, you’re also receiving timely feedback and the kind of teacher support you can only find in a small brick-and-mortar classroom – until now.
And if you need extra help, you can also ask questions in the Course Forums, or even email me directly. That’s the difference with an Assisted Course: you get the full benefit of a classroom experience, at your own pace, from the comfort or your home.
As well as a nurturing learning environment, unique content and instructor assistance, when you successfully complete the course you will be awarded a printable Certificate of Training, which you can add to your CV.
This Masterclass is web-based, with video lectures that you can follow at your own pace and from the comfort of your home. The lectures cover the full process, with no hidden steps: you can follow along as we go through each extrude and brushstroke, seeing how I would approach each specific challenge as we discuss the motivation behind it. We’re constantly referring to the WHY behind the process, so you can apply the same knowledge and thought-process to your own game assets.
This is an assisted course, and there are several ways to contact both your instructor and fellow students: via the course forums, under each unit via the Discussion section, by direct emailing the instructor, or via our Facebook group. The curriculum is carefully organized so the learning process is seamless: at the same time that we’re learning a new skillset, we’re also practicing it via our example asset, solidifying the knowledge with a hands-on approach.
The course comes with unlimited time access, you can review completed units at any time, as well as skip ahead if you want. When you successfully complete the course, you will be awarded a Certificate of Training, which you can add to your CV.
This Masterclass is ideal for artists and students who already have some experience with 3D modeling and texturing, and want to learn how to achieve high-quality results consistently, following a professional pipeline and approach towards creating game assets.
The course is taught in Autodesk 3ds Max 2016. A trial copy can be downloaded from Autodesk. You can easily follow with another 3D software such as Maya, Blender, Modo, etc.
Textures are created in Substance Painter. A trial copy can be downloaded from Allegorithmic. You can also follow along using Quixel.
- Some familiarity with 3ds Max is a plus.
- Some familiarity with a 2D painting package, such as Photoshop, is a plus.
- Substance Painter is covered from scratch, no previous experience is necessary.
- A painting tablet – such as Wacom Intuos – helps with the texturing process but is not mandatory.
Both Autodesk and Allegorithmic offer free educational versions of their software, ideal for students who are enrolled in a conventional college or university education:
- Anyone who has an interest in game modeling and texturing.
- Beginners looking to expand their knowledge.
- Students aiming at a career as a game artist.
- Professional artists who want to refresh their skills and learn techniques towards the new AAA standard.
- Modders who want to create professional quality game assets.