Project 2 Evaluation

• Explain planning, production and post-production techniques and processes you used to create an effective media product that will present and promote your idea to targeted audience?

Throughout this project I have been planning and researching the necessary tasks and assets for the project, when developing ideas for assets I used secondary research as a way to learn what styles would be suitable for a late 1800s time era. An example of planning would be the floor plan I designed which was used as a reference for dimensions of objects in my bunker room. Another example of my planning was the design document I created which had a list of all models I had created, which ones I had left to create, which ones produced audio and which ones had interaction. When producing content for the project I had to consider Tri-count for 3D models, I also considered how the textures would affect the overall tone of the room, I wanted the room to not look in the best condition but not seem ravaged or unused. When doing this I attempted to keep the room’s tone similar to the way the game was being marketed and close in theme to the story. In terms of post-production marketing was a heavy focus, for this I developed a banner for the game’s Twitter page, the rest of my group created art for other social media sites. We focused on social media sites as they are free to use and reach a large audience.

• Describe your project?

My project was a group effort which focused on learning and employing a broad variety of skills. The end result was several rooms of an underground bunker, each developed in the Unreal Engine for a game called Age Of Napoleon. Each of us created one room with its own purpose and theme for the bunker, though we worked together to keep the rooms similar as they are part of the same bunker. When creating the rooms we researched every aspect of what we wanted the rooms to be and planned ahead for development, during development we were taught and used skills pertaining to 3D Modelling, Unwrapping and Texturing, Audio production and working with the Unreal Engine.

• What were your goals and expectations?

My main goals were to create a room which gave an impression of the surrounding world even without prior knowledge of the setting, audio such as the distant gunfire and the audio log helped set the tone of the world while objects such as books, cans and plates being strewn around the room helped give the area a lived-in feel. My expectations were to create a small explorable environment which had good quality models, textures and audio and I believe I have lived up to my expectations.

• What is challenging, different and interesting about my media product?

My media product stands out from other forms of media in that it can be explored, inspected and interacted with. The player can choose to learn as much or as little as they like about the world by walking around, listening and observing different aspects of the room.

• Who is your ideal target audience?

My ideal target audience would be people who are teenagers or older. Due to themes of violence the game would not be targeted at a younger audience and would instead focus on more mature audiences. When marketing our game we did not leave out imagery of weapons or try to make the art appeal to children.

• Why the audience should see, listen, use my media product?

The audience should see, listen and use my media product as it tells a small part of a larger story, learning about the world that the player finds themselves in can be an interesting and rewarding pursuit. Both visual and audio aspects of the product have been well researched and maintain a coherent theme throughout and these parts of the room give an idea of the alternate history the player is in.

• What is the message of my media product?

The message of my product is that there is a complex and unique world to learn about, it sends this message by giving small glimpses of the world at large. These glimpses are designed to tell the player that there is much more to the world that they can piece together as they explore the bunker.

• How your creative decisions help communicate message?

Footsteps from other rooms indicate that you are with other people like yourself, distant, muffled gunfire indicates a war is being waged and the audio log from the book gives the player information on how the residents of this bunker survive. Parts of the room are untidy, yet the room as a whole has not fallen into disrepair which suggests that people are still using the room.

 

Unit 5 (LO3.1):
• What audio problems did you encounter during the production and post -production process?

During this project I had to develop audio which gave a lot of information or made sense to be heard, for example the gunfire and footsteps each gave the player different information, the gunfire was sporadic whilst the footsteps were generally consistent, only occasionally changing to a faster pace or multiple people. The audio I developed had to give the impression that the character wasn’t actually hearing it, because it was just the character hearing in their head what was written on the pages of the journal.
• What did you do to solve audio problems you encounter?

To solve the audio log issue I researched how other games give the impression I had intended, I found that they created this effect with a subtle reverb effect and I worked to edit my audio log similarly, I also added the faint scratching of a pen into the background of the log as to further suggest that it is the voice of the writer.
• How effective was you final outcome in solving audio-based problems at the end of your creative media project?

The audio that I developed for this project met my expectations, each piece of audio is significant and gives the player valuable information about the world they are in. When solving audio-based problems I had no issue as I researched what other games do and techniques that I could employ.
• How can I make this better?

I believe I could have improved the audio log by using a skilled voice actor rather than myself as I have little experience with it. I also believe the cross fading on the ambient light buzzing could be improved.
• What audio skills have you learned during this project and how can you develop them further for your FMP?

During this project I learned more about incorporating foley and more techniques to give audio I create a specific feel or atmosphere. I could incorporate foley into my FMP by performing and recording my own audio, I could also employ new techniques which create a certain atmosphere such as reverb effects.

Unit 6 (LO3.1):
• What visual problems did you encounter during the production and post -production process?

One of the problems I had with my room was scale, some of the assets I created were disproportionately tall and had to be edited to make them fit without just scaling them down which would greatly reduce their quality.
• What did you do to solve visual – based problems you encounter?

To fix this problem I simply edited the model until it fit the correct dimensions, however in the future I will use greyboxing to give myself a better idea of what a room full of furniture might look like when implemented. I would use the dimensions of these greyboxes as a template when creating the models.
• How effective was you final outcome in solving visual-based problems at the end of your creative media project?

I believe I solved my scale issue well as the final product does not have any scaling issues and none of the items sacrificed their quality to solve the issue.
• How can I make this better?

I believe I could have gone far closer to the Tri-count in my project, I was too concerned with my models being too high-poly and instead didn’t make the most of my budget. In the future I will maintain a focus on my budget for Tris and make the most of what I have.
• What visual based skills have you learned during this project and how can you develop them further for your FMP.

During this project I have learned a lot about texturing and types of texture such as specular maps and normal maps. Texturing is an aspect of visual work which I need to work on to improve the quality of my models and so I will try to improve my texturing abilities and use these different texture types on my final project to the best effect that I can.

 

Unit 7 (LO3.1):

 

• What interactive –based problems did you encounter during the production and post -production process of your creative project?

When triggering my audio log I didn’t want the audio clip to play each time the player entered the trigger box, this would cause the audio to overlap and become overbearing and unintelligible. This is the default state of the trigger box playing audio so I had to edit blueprints to fix this.
• What did you do to solve interactive – based problems you encounter?

Using a technique which I learned during the course I used the blueprints to make the audio only trigger once, this way the audio would begin when the player entered the trigger box, it would play the full audio log and then could not be triggered again.
• How effective was you final outcome in solving interactive-based problems at the end of your creative media project?

The solution to my problem was simple and did exactly what I wanted, I didn’t have any problems with interaction outside of this.
• How can I make this better?

I could add a button prompt above the book which indicates a key to be pressed, this key would act as a start and stop button for the audio log in case the player wanted to turn the audio off or hear it again after having played it once.
• What interactive based skills have you learned during this project and how can you develop them further for your FMP.

Through this project I have learned more about blueprints and how to use them in several ways. I can use blueprints to toggle events, to initiate events only once or to trigger an event every time the conditions are met, such as a button press. I could use this in my final project by incorporating one of these methods of interaction to trigger an effect such as audio or an animation.

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