Thursday, March 31, 2016

Diablo 3 Mega Art Post!

I recently got some of the art I made for Diablo 3 approved for release, so here is a mega post of work I did on that project! I'm super proud of this stuff and really happy to be able to finally share it!


Treasure Chests

I had the privilege of working on almost all of the treasure chests in Diablo 3. Many of which I designed all the way from concept to creation. It is always great to collaborate, but sometimes it’s also nice to be able to point to something in game and be able to say “I made that from beginning to end.” I got to craft all of their models, textures, FX, and animation.

Environment Props and FX

I got to do a lot of the environment props and FX for Diablo 3. Many of these items are innocuous breakables, but I am especially proud of the Breakable logs. The team always makes such beautiful trees and it meant a lot to me to try and chase that quality level when it came to crafting the fully 3D breakable.  
Many of the breakables had gameplay implications too. In the case of the Nephalem sprit totem I got to not only create the object, and animate its effects, but I also got to design its powers!  It was a very unique item, whereas before most of the traps helped the monsters, this one would awaken a Nehalem spirit that would assault the enemies and awaken neighboring totems. 
I also especially enjoyed to make the exploding gut trap in the bog; that one was rad because it got to look so gross. It was fun making the physics work on its little fleshy bits.

Greed Realm Props

I was sort of the Diablo teams treasure chest, and barrel dude, so I was really excited to work on the treasure realm! I got to do all of gold FX for when the containers bust open. I also got to make the most Uber chest in the game! We even got to animate it falling down to crush Greed! 
When working on this I got to apply everything I had learned from the original game and reaper of souls to craft it. Additionally I got to revisit the Tristram resplendent chest to create the Greed power where she summons treasure chests from the sky to assault the player. It was nice to come full circle and use one of the first chests I made as a part of the fight.

Pandemonium Prop FX

These breakable FX where totally collaborative, One co-worker did the 3D models and another defined the VFX style for pandemonium so by the time I got to finish them up I had some awesome materiel to pull from! These are probably some of the coolest breakables I got to work on, and its totally because I got to build on top of an already awesome foundation! 
When they are destroyed they evaporate into dust and mist, as though they were barely clinging to the corporeal realm. I was thinking of how paper burns when its being carried up in the hot air of a camp fire and how the materials should look like they were getting eaten away as they drift though the air. If you played the expansion I hope you remember them.

This image was also featured on the Official Diablo Blog

Town Props and FX

I got to do a lot of the props and FX for town. I animated and did the FX for the Horodric Cube, made stash variants for upgraded space, and all of the Identify all Book of Cain desks. I love to infuse story into all of my art and I thought of the Book of Cain table as almost a sort of traveling memorial that the Artisans had taken with them from town to town. Many of his belongings are littered around it. I also really enjoyed animating the pages turning, I like to think that some of Deckard's Horodric magic lives on in this book, and that the player gets to commune with him whilst identifying their loot!

This image was also featured on the Official Diablo Blog 

Diablo Piñata 

When I was asked to make the Resplendent chest for the secret pony level, I figured that since this level was a joke so it might be okay to break the convention of literal treasure chests. So instead of a traditional resplendent chest, this level,there is the Diablo Piñata!
I made and designed the whole asset, from concept, 3D model particle FX and animation. This was fun to make! I love dark and Gothic stuff but this level was a refreshing goof.

Leah's Room

When the environment art team was blocking in the layout for this room I talked about how I thought it would be cool if it looked a bit like the cinematic, with a writing desk and tons of candles. They liked the idea too and let me decorate, light and make the visual Effects for the scene. I didn't get to do a lot of set dressing on the Diablo project so I’m very thankful to have gotten to do some scene work on this space.

Eternal Woods

Making this level seemed like a no brainer, frozen undead forest. It was sort of a greatest hits of appealing motifs. One of my favorite Effects in the game is when the ground glows in Tristram and a bunch of zombie climb out of the earth. I got to do a new versions of those effects here for glowing forest zombies. It was awesome to be able to revisit something I loved and try to make it better.

King Kanai's Throne Room


I'm glad to finally be able to share King Kanai's throne room! It was awesome to get to fill the space with fire and to get to work with our designers to set up all of the scripted events. I got to do all of the Visual Effects for when you approach the room. Kanai's Ghost was really fun to work on. I love the stoically he slams his axe on the ground to summon the portal to his hunting ground. I also like how dramatically different the room looks outside of the month of march. It was really rad to take a dark peaceful room and fill it with furious barbarian flames!

This area was also featured on the Official Diablo Blog

Greyhollow Island

I was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, and Greyhollow island was my chance to pull a lot of inspiration from my homeland. The marine elements where heavily influenced by the Graveyard of the Pacific, a zone of coastline that is historically brutal. I have vivid childhood memories of visiting this northern coast and seeing ships like the Peter Iredale or New Carissa slowly sinking into the sand set against the grey churning fury of nature. 

Greyhollow is supposed to be set in a treacherous area constantly assaulted by the weather. A player would have to stop on an outcropping to look for it but the entire background is undulating with giant waves. It’s easy to miss but that effect was one of the hardest things I worked on, and I’m really happy with how it turned out.

This area was also featured on the Official Diablo Blog

Buff Bar UI FX

Sometimes its the little things that help to make a game feel good. This was one of those small things.
The designers wanted a better way to show buffs without having too many icons clutter your screen, so they asked me to make an effect for the button bar. I am one of those players in RPG's that will turn on all of the numbers! I love having data and it was happy to help serve some of that information to our players! It might seem insignificant but it was one of those little touches that was very gratifying to get to make.

They even featured it in this little blog post!

Gem Upgrade UI

This was once of the first big Visual effects I got to do for our interface. I was really stoked to work on this because the Diablo UI team is awesome, and I hadn't gotten many chances to collaborate with them before.
We where going for a sort of shadow box cosmic look for Urshi to set her apart from other nephalem ghosts. I learned a lot  from working on this, and was able to use my experience in the games UI to later make the Kanai Cube as awesome as it could be!

The Book of Cain

I love infusing story into everything I make. I thought of the Book of Cain table as almost a sort of traveling memorial that the Artisans had taken with them from town to town. Many of his belongings are littered around it.
I also really enjoyed animating the pages turning, I like to think that some of Deckard's Horodric magic lives on in this book, and that the player gets to commune with him whilst identifying their loot!
You can't see it here in this gif, but in game the player stands in a channeling pose and the little golden motes of energy swirl out of the book and into their hands. I sort of thought of it like the spirit of Cain was channeling knowledge to them.

Kaniai's Cube's Uber FX

I always remembered Deckard Cains voice from D2 saying "You have quite a treasure there in that Horodric Cube". Back then I imagined it being a cosmic bag of holding, with infinite possibilities! So for the secret recipe effects I wanted to do something really awesome. As the Cube spins back into the void, I tried to make it look like it was filled with galaxies, I hoped to try to and re-create the same feeling I had back in D2. The thought that this Cube could do anything, if I only knew it’s secrets.
Because this cube was curated by the barbarians I tried to replicate the look of a barbarian fury orb at the top symbol.  This energy flows out filling the ley-lines and activating the cube. I also tried to incorporate some of these colors in the swirling energy around the cube as it spins out into the void.
I got to work with Diablo's awesome UI team on this. They painted the static textures for the main panel, and I did the animation. It's always a privilege to get to collaborate with those guys! One neat piece of trivia is that the symbol around the orb. which was designed by the UI team. is supposed to resemble of the letters KKG. That is because this cube was part of the teams tribute content for our friend Kevin Kanai Griffith!

Blizzard published a post about it here

Greyhollow Island FX

I posted this before as a still image but I don't think the scene is done justice without animation giving it a sense of life, so I made a gif!

I was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, and Greyhollow island was my chance to pull a lot of inspiration from my homeland. The marine elements where heavily influenced by the Graveyard of the Pacific, a zone of coastline that is historically brutal. I have vivid childhood memories of visiting this northern coast and seeing ships like the Peter Iredale or New Carissa slowly sinking into the sand set against the grey churning fury of nature.

Greyhollow is supposed to be set in a treacherous area constantly assaulted by the weather. A player would have to stop on an outcropping to look for it but the entire background is undulating with giant waves. It’s easy to miss but that effect was one of the hardest things I worked on, and I’m really happy with how it turned out.

This area was also featured on the Official Diablo Blog


~Thanks!

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