Saturday, 10 November 2012

Final Major Project Overview


Create a natural outdoor environment with transitional day/night, weather and seasonal variation and procedural skybox.


To demonstrate my technical skills – notably shaders and VFX – and organic and structural environment creation.


Visually should be impressive to the lay person.
Technically should be impressive to the experienced artist.

Key targets

  • Awesome
  • Beautiful 
  • Exaggerated realism
  • Ever-changing
  • Diverse emotional key moments

Technical requirements

Using lab computers,
Target framerate: 40 FPS
Lowest acceptable framerate: 30 FPS


Approx 4 months



Must take around 30-45 seconds to walk briskly from start to end

  • Foliage (grass, shrubs, trees),
  • Rock formations (cliffs, boulders, small rocks),
  • Ruins of man-made fantasy structures (arches, pillars, monuments, small buildings)
  • Water features (waterfalls, streams, large body of water)
  • Primary vista (large waterfall, large river, large structures, mountains, etc)
  • Background (mountains)

Credit to Gnomon workshop (upper-right), Andree Wallin (lower-left) and Raphael Lacoste (lower-right) for their images (with minor adjustments)


Must transition smoothly between day and night, affecting light direction, intensity and colour and altering the skybox.


Must transition smoothly between seasons, affecting many aspects, including but not limited to:
  • Foliage colour
  • Fall and growth of leaves on trees and their gather and decay on the ground.
  • Weather and temperature probabilities and ranges


The weather must cycle between at least the following types of weather
  • Clear day
  • Rain
  • Snow
  • Fog
Weather types are to be implemented through particle effects and post-processing and must affect the shaders used in the environment as well as lighting. These same systems must also express temperature and wind speed visually.


  • Sun and moon, which move through the sky
  • Several types of clouds which form and disperse and move through the sky
The skybox must accommodate all previously mentioned systems as follows:
  • Clouds must be lit by the colour and direction of the sun
  • The sky colour must vary with the sun's position in the sky
  • The sky must feature both sun and moon as well as stars and clouds