Remember Thomas? He works with instructor Mike M. as part of Game-U’s Accelerate program. A hardcore virtual reality fan, Thomas usually focuses his efforts on building VR games in the Unity engine. His current project? A Jade-inspired dungeon crawler featuring locked door challenges.
Since Thomas’ player needs to see in order to explore the dungeon and hunt for the right keys to open its well-secured portals, Thomas modelled a torch to serve as a light source. Next, he turned that model into a prefabricated (prefab) object in Unity and used the lighting/fog settings to brighten the scene within a certain radius, creating the illusion of torchlight. Lastly, Thomas added multiple instances of his new prefab to give the whole level genre-appropriate lighting. The flickering, ruddy radiance transforms the straightforward layout of tunnels into a gloomy, sinister labyrinth, rife with exciting possibilities and heavy with atmosphere!
Thomas wasn’t finished yet, however. Because real torches generate sparks, he also spent some quality time learning Unity’s particle effects. Thomas worked with particles before to incorporate special visual effects into his games, but this time he did more than simply link an effect to an object. He and Mike M. opened up the size and emission settings of the fire particle to customize its appearance and frequency. Watch the video to see the “sparks” in action!
Lastly – because this is, after all, a dungeon crawler – Thomas broke out the modeling program Blender to start a skull prop. Proportional editing (a new skill for Thomas) helped shape the skull’s outline, while more detail-oriented tools allowed him to sculpt its eye sockets and nasal aperture. Skull prop rough draft, complete – and torchlight makes the already good model look even better!
Your game is really shaping up, Thomas. No one’s surprised! Keep in touch, and keep designing. We’d love to test drive some of your builds!