High Noon Shootout: Designing A “Lived-In” Background Scene
In today’s post, I will go over the choices I made when putting together the wild west town backdrop for my recent game.
Today’s Objective: Explain the options I had and choices I made when I designed the backdrop for the duel scene.
For the 3D models of this project, I was using the Synty Studios POLYGON Western low-poly pack, which includes many great 3D models for buildings, characters, weapons, and miscellaneous objects/props.
There is a great range of models to choose from to make the scene feel much more alive.
The Design Process:
When I started designing the backdrop, I didn’t have a specific plan in mind. I just wanted to use the available assets as best as I could.
As a general rule, it is good to start from the biggest elements first, so I placed the distant desert mesh backdrops first surrounding the town.
Next was the sand/dirt ground including the “path” that the 2 duelists would stand on.
Next was a pretty random, but organised selection of buildings in an order that seemed like it would suit a town. I made sure to include multiple layers of buildings on the Z axis, rather than just 1 layer next to the path.
Next, a scattering of props and objects, marking the start of the detailing phase. I make sure to not have everything perfectly aligned and/or organized so that it feels as though many people have interacted with it.
Next is populating the town. I figured, if a duel was happening, people would probably be outside to watch. I selected, placed, and posed a number of unique characters from the asset pack in a way I thought looked natural.
The final step was the special effects (“FX”). The asset pack came with some awesome ones: dust blowing, and tumbleweeds (collisions enabled!) rolling along.
After some interior lighting, post processing, and camera effects, the result is complete and looking great, if I do say so myself! :)