Week 7: Version Control
Updated: May 14
This week we looked into Version Control as well as receiving the theme for our second Rapid Ideation challenge. Firstly looking at Version control which is defined as: "a system that records changes to a file or set of files over time so that you can recall specific versions later." (Chacon, 2014) In game development you can see why Version Control plays a vital role in the development process as it allows developers and artists to refer back to earlier stages of the project in case errors appear in the code or the engine itself. There are two main ways of using version control and this can be by saving the project to your computer under different dates of use, which can be very monotonous or you can use a version control software such as GitHub and push your project to this software every so often to create a chain of past and present versions of your project. GitHub also allows you to branch off from the main project so you can experiment with your project and bring experimental elements from the branch to the main version at the end of your project.
Secondly, I wanted to talk about the rapid Ideation of course, we received the theme on the Wednesday which was presented as a hackathon ("is any event of any duration where people come together to solve problems" (Tauberer, 2017)) to solve a world problem.
My main goal to come from this rapid ideation project was to firstly create a creature/ Hexapod and secondly, bring the creature in to Unity and procedurally animate the creature. Masanobu animation director from The Last Guardian says, “His description of Procedural Animation was any motion that was automatically generated using mathematical expressions, scripts & pre-entered data, etc” (Themando, 2018)
Highlights from the week include:
- Sketching ideas
Creating a sketch (fig.1) is the initial start of any project I undertake. I explore a number of iterations and for the creature I was creating I had to name each of the pieces of trash it was made of to form a checklist reference for when I started working in 3d. In reflection I should have created more iterations of the character to fully explore the character design.
I created a repository on GitHub, however, I ended up saving multiple iterations of my files on my device as I was working by myself. This was more of a habitual mistake as I am used to this process from freelancing and I think I will use GitHub over the Easter break to create a repository as I believe it is a useful skill to have.
- Creating a 3d creature in blender
I created rubbish materials in blender such as an old CRT screen for the face and floatation tube for the torso. I then put all of the pieces together to create the creature which was all done in blender(fig2 and fig.3). I did not want any textures placed on the model as I wanted a very basic art style and I wanted to get to the main part of the project (procedural animation) as fast as possible. I was lucky to have drawn the character first so I knew where to place all of the pieces and that is why I find the concept art stage very important and it is good to take more time on the concepting stage of any project.
Fig.1 Luke Morrisby. 2021. Character concept drawing
Fig.2 Luke Morrisby. 2021. 3d rendered objects
Fig.3 Luke Morrisby. 2021. 3d rendered Character
Tauberer, J., 2017. Hackathon Guide. [online] Hackathon.guide. Available at: <https://hackathon.guide/> [Accessed 12 May 2021].
Chacon, S., 2014. Git - About Version Control. [online] Git-scm.com. Available at: <https://git-scm.com/book/en/v2/Getting-Started-About-Version-Control#:~:text=Version%20control%20is%20a%20system,can%20recall%20specific%20versions%20later.&text=Using%20a%20VCS%20also%20generally,files%2C%20you%20can%20easily%20recover.> [Accessed 12 May 2021].
Themando, B., 2018. The Last Guardian: Procedural Animation. [online] Game Anim. Available at: <https://www.gameanim.com/2018/01/24/last-guardian-procedural-animation/> [Accessed 11 May 2021].