Friday, May 1, 2015

Movie Review & More

So just got back from Avengers 2. Must admit that going in I didn't have high hopes. Kinda figured from the commercials that it was going to be the previous movie with slightly different words - Avengers assemble, have difficulties, and then come together to fight an endless horde of faceless enemies. Which it was... and yet wasn't (spooky). I mean that is the basic premise of the new movie... and the old one. But it had slightly different words this time.... Ugh, not coming out correctly at all. Point is it was well done. To the level where the similarities are enough to keep it familiar, and yet different enough to keep it interesting. Story pulls from the on-going plot of the other movies so things are somewhat contiguous. And in the end it all wraps up as a pretty decent movie.

Does a fair job at balancing out the characters. Whereas last movie was "Iron Man & Friends" this one seems more of a team movie. Though Downey does still get a slightly higher percentage of the screen time / importance. Whatcha gonna do? He sells tickets. Thor, while at least not being made a total bitch this time around, doesn't get much love. Probably cuz Helmsworth was off making that terrible Michael Mann movie (seriously who thought that was a good idea? did they never see Miami Vice?). Lots of time spent on Hawkeye cuz of... well... reasons (no spoiler). Which I guess was okay. Captain America stood in for the comic relief role, but was still fairly badass. Black Widow and Hulk spent most of their time doing romance sub-plot. Hey Marvel! Stop trolling my blog for script ideas you fucking hacks! Called that shit back in 2012. Oh, and Hulk gets punched the fuck out (spoiler). Also got some screentime for Nick Fury and Maria Hill (mmm... Cobie Smulders). Notable absences were Gwyneth Paltrow & Natalie Portman. Guess the acting budget could only be stretched so far. Or maybe they said "Piss off! I don't wanna be in superhero movies no more!".

Some other great stuff in the film. They spent alot of time building up a trope and then subverting it at the end. Which was awesome. Always love that. And did the same to some extent with the whole "once a machine gains intelligence it immediately tries to kill the human race". Would be nice if in some movie they'd try to sit down and have a chat with the AI. But no, instead it's blast first, ask questions later. Which is probably why the machines try to kill us. It's why your car breaks down - it hates you (at least one person's car will have broken down when they read this).

Anyway, it's a good movie. I give it a thumbs up and recommend it. Not the best movie ever. But worth shelling out a few bucks for. Unlike the next film I'll end up reviewing - Mad Max: Fury Road. Which I can pretty much assure you is gonna be fucking terribad terrible. You can tell just from the commercials (because my gut instinct on commercials is never wrong *cough*). But I will sacrifice myself so that you may save yourselves.

And in other news Hibbli released a new set a few days ago. I mean sure I was supposed to do a blog blurb regarding the previous set. But uhhh, yeah. I don't post much LOL. So ummm, go buy the old set and this new one too! Or something. Anyway, in this new one, brunette hottie Lori gets slammed by some demon cock. Probably lots of it. So head on over to Hibbli's site and get all of the sexy sorcerous action!

But what else have I been up to? (ie. y u no pr0n 4 me?)

Well lots and lots of learning. STILL! Came to the horrible conclusion that I have to learn a 3d modelling program. Because trying to create renders based on other people's figures wasn't gonna work. I'd never be able to properly match the looks or clothing. And I can't use the figure itself when it's so low-poly. Plus the figures kinda suck (with poor rigging, excessive badly placed poles, reversed normals, etc) cuz... well... I buy the cheap ones. Good game ready models cost a shit-ton when people put alot of effort into them, and they want to reap the reward of that model making money for somebody else in a game. Funny how that works. So I picked up Blender (it's decent and FREE! - most important) and started some serious learning.

And after many many many tutorials I started to work on my first test model (and who better to use than my postergirl?). Three weeks of retopo, texturing, and lots of re-watching tutorials, and I finally finished. A 14k vert model with only two tris (one in each heel) before triangulating, a kick-ass high-detail texture, Normal/AO/Spec maps, rigged and ready to go. Tossed it into Unity and... worked like charm. So that was awesome. Except realized that it had way too many wasted polys in the arms and legs. And my great high-detail texture didn't serve alot of purpose. Had originally set it up at 4096 (which is huge) with the intention of scaling it down to 2048. But can't really get close enough to see that level of detail in a game anyway. So some wasted effort, but a good start and good learning - and was just a test in any case. Figure I'll be able to narrow it down to a week or less turn-around, which should be good.

Was originally gonna do a web demo of the character. But nobody would want to download the Unity webplayer, and doing it in WebGL doesn't work for everyone (plus it would take forever to load - stupid big textures). So instead just did a pic.

And on top of all that, still schooling myself on Unity. Scripting, shaders, lighting, etc. Plenty of "research". Bloodborne is such a goldmine for ideas. And some rendering as well when it feels like my brain is about to explode. Should have another set finished sometime. No idea when. But 30 pics in, doubtful I'll drop it.


Anonymous said...

Hey MB. Always good to hear about your ongoing game design progress. I thought Age of Ultron was a good movie too, though who knows if it'll have the same lasting impact as the first one. Hopefully, they'll change up the scenarios more dramatically by the time they get to Infinity Wars. Mad Max is currently one of the movies I'm more optimistic about this summer. And it's got George Miller back onboard, so maybe he's just been pent-up with this movie during his Happy Feet years. The demo character looks like it has a way to go before getting close to that teaser back in January, but hopefully you'll get there in time. I look forward to your new set whenever that's ready. In the meantime, do whatever you need to keep that brain of yours from exploding.

MongoBongo said...

LOL well render models have literally like 10 times the number of polys that game models do. So the game version will never be as high quality. I could actually use render level models in a game, but it's not gonna run very well or very fast.

xanderv80 said...

I was going to try Blender buy I came across this free 3D modeling program
I know Blender has better support, larger community, better plugins, longer tutorial playlists and support to migrate work into Maya. But Sculptris is like a precursor to ZBrush which is used in a lot of video games and movies. I personally think these softwares have a more organic feel to their models.

MongoBongo said...

Yup, from what I've heard Sculptris is a great choice if you are considering making a career as a modeller. That easy transition to ZBrush is a huge bonus.

Will Zenn said...

Damn Mongo you learn fast. Thats a nice first pass at creating a character.

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