By perculia on 2014/09/02 at 7:05 PM Pacific
By perculia on 2014/08/25 at 1:51 PM Pacific
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By perculia on 2014/07/25 at 3:04 PM Pacific
By perculia on 2014/07/24 at 7:35 PM Pacific
Hello, and welcome to another edition of Artcraft. I’m Chris Robinson, senior art director on World of Warcraft, and today our environment team is going to give you a look at one of the zones we’re creating for Warlords of Draenor, as well as share some insight into how we approach creating environment art. Take it away Gary!
Hey, I’m Gary Platner, lead environment artist on World of Warcraft. I direct a team of artists who help create the world . . . of Warcraft. We shape the land; texture it; place the trees, rocks, and buildings; and design the “sets” where our quest team will later place the “actors.” Today we’re going to be showing you some of what's going into the creation of the Spires of Arak. This location that would later become known as Terokkar Forest, but in Draenor-terms, this zone is the home of the regal, sinister, and flighted arakkoa.
One of the best parts about working on WoW for me is when we first start a new exterior zone. Creativity reigns, and almost anything goes—it’s real blue sky stuff. When we started working on Spires of Arak, we only had some basic ideas: tall rocky spires jutting out of a dense forest. So we got together to talk about what that might look like, and soon afterward, artist Jimmy Lo started making concepts.
Based on these concepts, we could tell right away that this zone was going to present some unique challenges. The biggest one was how we were going to build the large spiky rocks that would give the zone its distinctive look. We had two basic methods in mind to create those spires. Some of us thought that the best way would be to make most of the rocks as 3D props instead of using our terrain editor to sculpt the landscape into tall spires. 3D props have some distinct advantages, since building a prop allows for the creation of fully 3D objects of any shape, which gives us a lot of design freedom. The downside is they tend to be difficult to blend into the landscape in a natural-looking way (see the original Blade’s Edge Mountains in Outland). They’re also much more difficult to iterate on as design needs change. If instead we used our terrain editor to create the spires, that would allow us a lot of freedom to iterate on zone layout and design without needing to fidget with large pieces of premade geometry, with the potential downside of not being able to do the concept justice.
Our design team wanted to at least give the terrain editor option a chance, so they embarked on creating a proof of concept to see how well it could work. A lot of us contributed to the Spires of Arak, but ultimately Matt Sanders (exterior level designer) and Kelli Hoover (environment artist) were tasked with creating the zone. Kelli gathered resource material and started to do some paint-overs of our concepts in order to unify a distinctive new color palette. Meanwhile, Matt created the proof of concept in our editing tools in order to test ideas for creating large spiky rocks with the exterior terrain editor.
Kelli gathered a lot of reference pictures, paying special attention to color and mood. She then slightly recolored Jimmy’s concepts to model different times of day.
Then Kelli moved on to testing texture ideas by creating rough and quick block-out textures, which aren’t intended to look final but help give us an idea of color and detail. We can paint these rough textures over the landscape and do various tests to help us see how they interact. We can also see how the textures change and distort as they are painted on steep mountain terrain.
As you can see here, Matt and Kelli experimented with different textures and geometry in an attempt to duplicate the concepts from Jimmy.
Kelli and Matt discovered that using a striated rock texture would actually work better than a simpler rock pattern, and the striations give the impression of upward movement. These linear texture shapes would also bend and stretch well over the exterior terrain creating a really unique look for the zone.
Once Matt and Kelli finalized their demo zone and we agreed that everything was heading in the right direction, the real work could begin. Now the whole zone could be completed using the style and techniques that worked in the small demo zone. They’d still have to work out the look for some of the smaller subzones, though, like dense forests, beaches, and a massive thorny bramble where the Shattered Hand orcs dwell.
Last but not least, we’ve prepared a short video for you to demonstrate the various steps involved in creating the Spires of Arak. Thanks for tuning in, and we look forward to sharing more with you in the future!
Railmaster Pauli Rocketspark, chief foreman of the Grimrail Depot, has been enlisted by Garrosh Hellscream to build the technology required for the Iron Horde's infrastructure. Given the dim-witted assistant Borka to do the heavy lifting, Rocketspark set about building the Grimrail.
Kargath Bladefist, Chieftain of the Shattered Hand, honed his brutal skills as a slave in the Ogres' gladiatorial games. He slaughtered countless opponents for the promise of freedom, but after winning, was locked away with the other retired "champions." Fueled by rage, Kargath tore off his own hand to escape and led a revolt that soaked Draenor in ogre blood. Now, he eagerly returns to the arena to teach you the true meaning of savagery.
In Mythic difficulty, the raid must perform well to gain favor that is tracked by Roar of the Crowd. If the raid gains enough favor from Roar of the Crowd, the raid is granted increased damage dealing.
In Mythic difficulty, the raid gains favor for Roar of the Crowd the longer Kargath stays in Berserker Rush. However, if Kargath's fixate target dies, the raid loses a big chunk of favor.
In Looking for Raid difficulty, Kargath automatically tosses the tank with the least amount of Open Wounds stacks, one random healer, and three random DPS into the crowd.
In Mythic difficulty, killing Iron Grunts grants favor for Roar of the Crowd.
In Mythic Difficulty, the Ravenous Bloodmaws are released from their pits. Setting these beasts on fire will gain favor for Roar of the Crowd.
In Mythic Difficulty, any player that has 3 or more stacks of Gushing Wounds will perish instantly.
An ancient embodiment of the chaotic forces that shaped the terrain of Draenor, Tectus has been twisted and enslaved by the maddened Pale Orcs - who themselves barely maintain control over this imposing force of nature.
Fungal Giant. All visuals are temp.
In Mythic difficulty, two players may enter the rune per phase of Charging.
In Mythic difficulty, the rate that Overflowing Energy forms is accelerated.
In Mythic difficulty, the Rune of Displacement remains active while the Rune of Fortification is active.
In Mythic difficulty, the Rune of Displacement and Rune of Fortification remain active while the Rune of Replication is active.
Working with the Iron Horde, the leader of the Warcasters attemps to empower himself by feeding upon the power locked inside the ancient runes placed in the Spire by the Dark Iron Dwarves that built it.
A survivor of Nefarian's force, Kyrak has remained in Blackrock Spire attempting to harvest the remaining Black Dragon Flight eggs.
Born in Draenor, Tharbek was honored by Warlord Zaela with the opportunity to lead the Ironmarch into Azeroth. Relentless and cruel, Tharbek demands obedience from all who serve under him.
Ragewing is a gigantic Proto-Dragon raised by the Dragonmaw clan. Her unbreakable spirit has kept her from being taken as a mount by any of the Dragonmaw, although Zaela has been able to create an uneasy friendship with her.
Zaela, Warlord of the Dragonmaw clan, was entrusted by her old ally Garrosh to work with the Iron Horde invasion vanguard to set up a doomsday weapon in the heart of Blackrock Mountain.
In Heroic difficulty, the amount of abilities you must use to break the channel is increased.
In Heroic difficulty, Witherbark can continue to cast Unchecked Growth even while affected by Brittle Bark.
Archmage Sol is the last holdout of the Kirin Tor expedition here; but ultimately has succumbed to the spores that have taken root in her brain. She now lives as a prisoner inside her own body.
In Heroic and Challenge difficulty, Entanglement can target players.
On Argus - the former homeworld of the Draenei, now the stronghold of the Burning Legion - Azzakel waits, poised for a servant of the Legion to open a portal to one of the countless worlds they seek to invade. As Soulbinder Nyami lowers the defenses of Auchindoun, Azzakel senses that his services will soon be employed towards the destruction of the holiest of Draenei temples.
In Heroic and Challenge Mode difficulties, Fel Sparks shoot out from the Fel Pool when it is created.
Working alongside the Sargerai, Gul'dan's agent Teron'gor plots to feast upon the bounty of souls that lie behind the barriers of the holy city of Auchindoun.
The Arakkoa's penultimate Chakradhaari, Ranjit has mastered the secret techniques required to create gale force winds with his chakra.
A construct of ancient Arakkoan civilization powered by the light of the sun.
Oregorger is an overgrown Goren who has burrowed his way into the Blackrock Foundry's storage room and gluttonously consumed their Blackrock ore.
Hans'gar and Franzok are twin brothers raised to become masterful brawlers of the Warsong clan. Both carved paths of glory on their way to become Warlord, but destiny had other plans. The brothers, each unwilling to slay the other to claim leadership, were banished from the Warsong and left for dead. They survived, alone in the savage wilds of Draenor, and when the Iron Horde called, these powerful warriors found a new home among the massive war machine.
Under the banner of the Iron Horde, Blackhand has enlisted Flamebender Ka'graz of the Burning Blade to imbue the Blackrock-forged armaments with the essence of flame. Along with her assistant Aknor Steelbringer, Ka'graz toils before an everburning forge in support of the Iron Horde's conquest of Draenor.
As a young orc, Darmac quickly rose through the ranks of the Thunderlord as a gifted trainer of beasts. Where others only saw animal instincts, he recognized intellect and drew forth untapped potential from brain and muscle and bone. When the Iron Horde demanded his service, Darmac saw no greater honor than to outfit and train the most savage beasts Draenor had to offer.
With little opportunity to exercise her tactical brilliance under the ancient social structure of the orc clans, Gar'an was thrilled to be one of the first warriors to volunteer for naval duty under the Iron Horde. Instantly successful in battle, she was named Admiral of the Iron Horde fleet and selected Marak and Sorka as her lieutenants. Together, they are called the Iron Maidens, and have crushed any who have dared face them in battle.
Warlord of the Blackrock Clan.
In Heroic Difficulty, Dancing Flames initially strikes two players.
In Challenge Mode, Dancing Flames initially strikes two players.
In Heroic and Challenge difficulty, Fiery Boulder will return to Roltall along the same path once it reaches the end of the bridge.
By perculia on 2014/07/17 at 9:52 PM Pacific