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About this blog

This blog will detail my environment art and level design work in Leadwerks.

Entries in this blog

The Zone: A final HD video tour

Hello again! Just in time for Halloween, my blog once again rises from the dead. Although I wrapped up the Zone project back in July, I just recently finished a 13 minute HD video tour of the completed project. I may be doing a "behind the scenes" video some time later on if there's interest.   For now, welcome to The Zone:  

DaveLee

DaveLee

Leadwerks Blog Post 11: Welcome to The Zone

It’s finally that time — the Zone project is coming to an end. I have really enjoyed working on this project and sharing the progress with you all. Thanks for all of the great critiques and feedback! Today I will be posting images of the last building for the Zone, as well as images of the final level design and some wallpapers at the end of the blog post.   To start things off, here is the centerpiece of the forest. This small, dilapidated house was condemned after the Chernobyl accidental an

DaveLee

DaveLee

Leadwerks Blog Post 10: A Grave Sign of the Times

Please excuse the rather horrifying pun in the title, but today’s update will highlight quite a few new assets and more level design, focusing in on the new grave sites and Zone signs specifically.   Let’s dive in!   First up, here are the new overview images. I’ve been working on the level design quite a lot, so you’ll notice lots of changes, along with a new skybox and afternoon lighting. I’ll be showing more detailed images of some of these areas later.   The new skybox:      

DaveLee

DaveLee

Leadwerks Blog Post 09: The Beginning of the End

Today’s blog update on the Zone project will be quite lengthy, as over the last few weeks I have been finishing up the remaining assets and now I’m beginning to focus on the level design side of things. My new Intel i7 system is up and running once again (and no longer on fire), so today I have a good number of screenshots to share with you.   It’s been a while since I shared some overview images with you all, so I’ll start off with those:       In these you can see where I’ve begun

DaveLee

DaveLee

The Zone Blog 08: Fire in the hole!

Some of you may have noticed via my status updates last week that I was in the process of my 2-year PC upgrade cycle, and that I was working on building an Intel Core i7 based system. The good news is that the upgrade went well despite having to reinstall Windows (nothing was lost), and the system was stable and powerful within 24 hours of the parts arriving. The bad news? Saturday, during a heavy CPU load, a capacitor on the motherboard exploded, sparking a small fire on the board. Yes, I’m ser

DaveLee

DaveLee

"The Zone" Blog 07: Milestones and Vertex Colors

Hello again, programmers, artists, and game designers! Today's blog update will be a smaller one, with a much larger update on the way soon. Today I'm going to talk briefly about one way to utilize vertex color when texturing an asset, in this case a building, and then share some images of the Zone beta milestone from the end of May.   Those of you that downloaded the R5 version of Leadwerks 3.32 are already familiar with my derelict garage model. For this model, I initially used a single main

DaveLee

DaveLee

Leadwerks Blog Post 06: Incoming Renders

As promised last week, it's finally time for a new blog update! Lots of new artwork has been created since the last update, but I'm going to start off by posting several large renders of the Zone project from a few weeks ago. These would make for great desktop backgrounds:     The biggest focus of the last few weeks has been the design of the derelict Ukrainian military barracks. This building was based off of a real barracks in the Exclusion Zone. One of the new Leadwerks features that

DaveLee

DaveLee

The Rumors of My Death Were Greatly Exaggerated

Hello again, everyone! As some of you may of noticed, it's been quite a while since my last blog update. Lots of good things have been going on behind the scenes, which is why there haven't been any recent updates. I'm currently preparing a large blog post for this weekend, but for now you get this little teaser:

DaveLee

DaveLee

"The Zone" Blog 04: A Bridge Too Far (Or as far as you need it, actually)

Hello again, everyone! It's been a busy few weeks on the Zone project, and a lot has been accomplished. Besides the work presented here, a lot has been going on behind the scenes as well. Last week Josh wrote the GMF Processor, which collapses GMF models into an optimized mesh. This tool has helped speed up in-engine performance significantly, and you can try it out for yourself here: http://leadwerks.com/werkspace/index.php?/topic/1767-gmf-processor/   I've also been fixing mesh errors and c

DaveLee

DaveLee

"The Zone" Blog 04: A Bridge Over Troubled Waters

Welcome to another installment of “The Zone” level design blog. Today I’ll be detailing what has been going on since the last blog post, which includes some new and imported assets as well as some significant changes to the level design in the Editor. I implemented the new SSDO that Josh posted recently, and redid the lighting based off of a few tips he suggested. The main sunlight is a white-orange, and a very dark blue-gray ambient light is used to lighten the shadows and balance the lighting.

DaveLee

DaveLee

"The Zone" Blog 03: Working on the Railroad

In the last update I was working on laying out everything in the map, especially the roadways and block placeholders for the main buildings. In today's update, I'm going to go over what I've been working on since then, which is the most logical step after roads...rails!   But, before we dive in, here is an overview image for Blog #3:     One of the biggest steps since the last blog update was to get a modular rail system set up. Based off of that photo shoot I did 2 weeks ago, I created

DaveLee

DaveLee

"The Zone" Blog 02: Setting up the terrain and importing initial props

Hello everyone! It's time for another blog post about The Zone Leadwerks level design project. I'm going to start today's update off with an overview screenshot of the map. I plan on doing this for each blog post so you can easily follow the overall progress week to week.     I've been working on setting up the major terrain features as laid out in the planning sketch. Below are screenshots of some of the roads with WIP textures, the swamp next to the military camp, the military camp itself

DaveLee

DaveLee

"The Zone" Blog 01: Getting My Feet Wet

Hello everyone! My name is Dave Lee, and I am a 3D artist and level designer. As Josh mentioned in a recent blog post, he has hired me to create a AAA-game quality environment for the Leadwerks engine — one that really shows off what it's capable of. This environment will be a fictional scene inspired by the real Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. For now it is titled simply "The Zone".   While I'm still getting the hang of Leadwerks and the Editor, I've found it pretty easy to just jump right in with

DaveLee

DaveLee

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