Secrets of a Technical Artist (Part 2)

Welcome back to secrets of a technical artist, today I will take you through our art pipeline, and I’ll be showing you some of the tools I’ve created to simplify the process of making our art assets.

Hopefully by the end of this post you’ll have a greater knowledge of our working process, and perhaps you’ll take away some ideas for how to make things easier, so you can concentrate on what matters - making the game look good.

Screenshot: Preloaded Tools for Maya

Writing Tools

Here at Preloaded the artists mostly work within Maya, Photoshop and Unity. Mostly these programs work really well for us out of the box. But sometimes we have specific needs that they can’t naturally accommodate, or we can see ways of improving what is already there. Thankfully they all allow you to write scripts to modify how they work, which ...

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The most important games of 2013

Last year saw a sustained boom in games that challenge the traditional mindset that games’ sole objective is to entertain. As we look forward to the new year, we thought it would be good to pay homage to the games which we felt led this charge and stood out, to us, as the most important games of 2013.

Social Commentary - Papers Please

The possibility of putting the player in the shoes of another character, to let them see and empathetically interact with the the world from a different perspective is one of the most powerful advantages of games over passive media. For many games, the purpose of this avatar character is empowerment, allowing the player to become a heroic space soldier or a stealthy ninja. In Papers Please, the player is granted the power of bureaucracy, charged with deciding whether a seemingly endless stream of hopeful applicants are permitted to ...

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Why games should matter in the Health sector

One of the fastest growing areas of games industry is the development of games for more than just entertainment. Harnessing the power of games for alternative purposes - for education, training, communication or social change - is something we're very passionate about, and one sector which we believe will benefit most from games’ reach and transformational qualities is Health.

This post attempts categorises the opportunities, and showcase some of the best games leading this charge. 

Screenshot: Actual Sunlight

This post attempts to categorise these opportunities, and showcase some of the best examples of games in this space. 

Public awareness and outreach

One of the most visible parts of the health sector is focussed on outreach and education. The success of any public awareness campaign is measured in reach and engagement, and the pervasiveness of games and their flexibility makes them the perfect tool to target large numbers of people with a ...

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Crafty Cut - Making maths fun

The first reaction the word “Maths” is generally one of fear and loathing. Whilst science has recently been given a media makeover with the likes of Brian Cox and Dara O’Briain both presenting prime time TV shows in what had previously been considered terminally dull subject areas, Maths still remains deeply unglamorous. Of course the interesting thing is that maths, perhaps more than any other subject, has the capacity to illuminate, inspire and astound.

We wanted to make a maths game with allure; something you wanted to touch, something that had the capacity to surprise and, crucially, something that didn’t instantly cause students to put up the shutters. One of the problems is that when you think of maths most people instantly default to imagining a sea of numbers. Maths can, however, encompass more than abstract numbers- it can include the wonders of geometry and this was where ...

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Secrets of a Technical Artist (Part 1)

The games we make at Preloaded are varied, each of which has unique style championed by the Lead Artist. The beginning stage of a project is devoted to the concepting and fleshing out of the overall look of the game. Once this has been achieved, it is my job as a Games Technical Artist to make this vision real.

Initial direction

I usually keep an eye on concept art development from a distance. I’m always sizing up the ideas to see if they’re achievable, but it's important at this stage to give space to define something unique without fear of limitations. 

Once the style has been approved, I sit down with the lead artist, looking through the concept art and discussing the vision of the game. The final art isn’t always meant to be an exact replica of the concept art, so it's very important ...

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