Gift Wrapping Blender Style

In this post I would like to show people how to wrap textures around objects in Blender. I feel like this is an interesting thing to talk about because it took me forever to learn how to do it. Then I celebrated by eating more chips. Blender is an incredibly powerful program that gets to be really exciting when you know what you’re doing, but up until that point you can feel really lost. It takes watching a lot of tutorials and working time to understand it more than anything.

So here is a video that I posted on how to wrap a texture I had previously drawn to a cylinder mesh. It’s a coin that I’m working on for our game Vikings that is still a work in progress. We’re opting to make a lot of the assets in Blender now instead of hand drawing all of them in Photoshop. Hopefully it’ll make things shine a little more than if they were drawn flatly in 2D.

If you don’t feel like watching the video you can just look at this picture of the final product here below:

Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 7.19.57 PM

As you can see I’m still very fresh to texturing, and you might find that there’s a better way to do it but at least this one way works. You’ll find that you can make things smooth or bumpy, and once I get to that point I’ll share a video update of what I learned. Maybe I’ll learn how to wrap an object, 3D print it and send it to someone’s house as a gift. Just gave you a glimpse of the future. You’re welcome.

Have any thoughts or better ways of wrapping textures?

Will It Blend?

This week I found a couple of hours to learn how to build landscapes within Blender. With a couple of strokes of the mouse I was able to throw up mountains and sculpt plains. I even conjured a couple of houses and trees. I was feeling the powers of divinity course through my veins when I remembered that I was just a dude sitting in front of a computer eating chips. There was some clicking on things going on as well.

At first I was unsure of what kind of landscape I wanted to build so I set up a flat plane and started to sculpt it. As a visual learer I love being able to watch someone make something and then try it myself. For that reason I recorded myself making a simple landscape that you can watch here:

I’ve only been fumbling around with modeling for a couple hours now so please don’t judge the jumpiness too harshly. Or judge it, this is the internet after all.

After building the land I decided to plop some trees and some houses onto it. I decided that I would build them from scratch because I was bold and didn’t want to cheat by using a frame from online. I realized how hard of work this is and understand why a lot of artists opt to download textures and features that allow them to build realistic looking things more quickly. If a 3D artist spent all his or her time building everything from scratch it would take hours upon hours to get anything to look good. In a way artists are combining pieces from everywhere to make art, which in my opinion is what they were all doing in the first place before computers ever existed. Here are the results of my playing around with a sandy texture and modeling some simple objects:

Screen Shot 2015-01-19 at 5.25.53 PM

As you can see I’m still working on it, and I do when I get time. I’ll post some more updates on my landscape in the future as it improves. In the mean time I need to learn how to stop accidentally hitting my knee whenever I get up from my chair.

Seriously. It hurts.

Binary Cocoa Has an Identity Crisis

A little more than a year ago Binary Cocoa embarked on a mission to build solid 2D video games that would be intuitive and visually excellent. As the art director, I was happy and comfortable drawing assets in Photoshop in the corner of my lair. I would spend hours stroking a green eyed cat on my lap, cackling while drawing characters and backgrounds for 2D games we were working on. Then one day the mad scientist, or Joseph, howled down from the top of the lighting filled tower and asked if I would try out something new.

This new thing was Blender, a free and open source 3D animation suite. Blender was completely new to me, but the prospect of building assets in 3D was intriguing even if the notion did seem farfetched at first. To get some help I started watching tutorial videos, and within an hour I was starting to build my own simple models. Here is the first one that I built:

Screen Shot 2014-12-24 at 4.01.54 PM

Is it a space station of sorts? Or is it a door knocker? I don’t have a clue myself, but I do know that it was fun to build.

I fooled around with the program a little more, trying to make a spaceship, and came out with what looked like a hot dog with extra appendages:

space hot dog

Progress was made by learning how to make things smooth by using the tools given to me, and then rendering an image of it using the camera built into the program. It also lets you adjust the lighting on your model by giving you a lamp that can be moved around.

I set out to build a third model and came up with something more angular. I was still trying to build a ship, and created a goofy looking duck that looks like something straight out of Star Fox:

duck

I know it’s not extraordinary, but I’m making progress! And I’ve only been playing with Blender for a day. I have yet to learn how to color or do other crazy things, but when I do I will be sure to post my progress and tips here for anyone who is interested.

Blender also allows you to render sprite sheets of your work which you could use in 2D games. You can save a lot of animating time by drawing one character and animating it, instead of redrawing it eight or ten times. It also means that Binary Cocoa is changing the way it is looking at implementing art in its games.

I guess you can say we’re having an identity crisis. I suppose that because we are mad scientists, this should be expected. So what happens now? Does Binary Cocoa just have to settle down and make changes or be shipped off to the psych ward?

Binary Cocoa Bakes a Pie

Binary Cocoa has been furiously working away at our new game, Collider, over the past couple of months. The game involves shooting bullets that develop their own AI and try to destroy you. It’s so evil and cute I can hardly stand it. Check out this nifty trailer:

https://youtube.com/watch?v=K7YyDOa8rpk%3Fhtml5%3D1%26%23038%3Brel%3D0%26%23038%3Bhl%3Den_US%26%23038%3Bver

The game allows players to use up to eight game pads and multiple game modes. For the extra-creative players, Collider lets you build your own game modes that can be shared with an online community.

In the past, Binary Cocoa has built games and sold them through providers such as the Humble Widget and Desura. This time we are using Steam Greenlight to get the word out about the game. Help us by voting through this link. Your votes determine whether or not Collider becomes the next big thing.

Also, our programmer Joseph has agreed to take a pie to the face as soon as Collider gets into Greenlight’s top one hundred. We will, of course, document his reaction for our records.

Let us know in the comments what type of pie you believe should be used.

Binary Cocoa Releases Trailer for Boco

Watch the first trailer for Binary Cocoa’s newest game BOCO!

https://youtube.com/watch?v=sVKzM9EQXlo%3Ffeature%3Dplayer_detailpage

Check out bocogame.com for more exciting tips and information on how to play the game. Check here for further updates on a release dates and more posts on how to make your own games using the love 2D framework!

Binary Cocoa Soars to the Future On the Wings of a Grouse

The team at Binary Cocoa has been busier than a nest of hornets chasing the kid who threw rocks at them this year. We’ve put our sweat and caffeine into making new blog posts for readers who share an affinity for game development, and we’ve had fun along the way. We’re on the tipping point of something great and are bracing ourselves for maximum warp on the highway of success.

Hexapod Defense Force has seen its release for computers across several platforms, and we are currently evicting the bugs from the code that are keeping it in beta mode. Improving its performance has been a priority, and we are picking up new tricks along the way. Someday we’ll share some of those here.

Here’s what Stephen and Joseph have been up to outside of the gaming world:

Stephen packed up all of his stuff, crammed it into his tiny Honda Civic and drove it across the country to Virginia, where he’ll be staying for a while. The trip took four days, two boxes of fruit snacks. His back was very sore. Then he drove back and forth between Baltimore and Williamsburg on a weekly basis to do job interviews at different school districts. After much searching he finally acquired one in Queens Lake, VA. This allowed him to move into an apartment and continue to do art in the evenings and every other day.

Joseph continued to function at his day job, as well as taking on Binary Cocoa projects at night. His dedication and hard work kept things going while Stephen lived in a car and smelled bad. His efforts brought much advancement to a game the team is developing that is called BOCO. The game is nearing completion, and we expect to do a release sometime in the near future.

The work on Viking Escape has slowed for the time being, but after preceding projects see completion it will see its day. We’re all very excited about this one. We were much more efficient on coding this game having experienced much with the previous one. Every game has pushed us a step further in quality development, and we hope to continue the trend as long as we’re creating games.

Additionally, Binary Cocoa has brought on an intern. Braden will be working with us to keep our games moving forward, and we’ve been able to work with him on bringing some of his ideas to life. Collider is another game being worked on that should be released before the New Year. Expect to see postings about it.

So, in summary, here are our plans before the New Year. Release the final versions of HDF and BOCO for Win/Lin/Mac/Android and have it submitted to Google Play store as well as the Apple App Store. Collider should be ready for people to enjoy and Vikings should be close to its final release. The blog will have more posts, specifically more in depth tutorials for those learning development.

So tag along with us as we puff out our chests and grouse our way into the future! Or just check in for our weekly posts and try our games if you don’t wish to be so showy. Leave us comments and we’ll be happy to answer them during breaks from squashing bugs in code.