Recreating the Nostromo

4. Continuing the Blockouts


Minor update from my last entry since not a lot has changed in terms of what I've been working on. Still continuing on with ‘phase 2' of the blockout. This was something that wasn’t in my intial plan to do but after finishing the first blockout I decided the complexity of the structural elements in the scene warranted further research.

Getting everything fitting together right and constructing decent modular assets are a high priority to me and my initial white box blockout still left me with too many unanswered questions.

The far right of this image shows the first and second iiterationsof the blockout, these mainly came for set building blueprints I discovered. They suffice for the broad strokes of the environment scale but are far less useful or anything else.

A big part of the Alien aesthetic for me is the ‘lived in’ nature of the environment. Truckers in space being the term thrown about the most. Aside from the major sci-fi elements in the scene much of the spaces uniqueness comes from the various accoutrements that the occupants have added over the years.

By going through and creating a more detailed blockout I am able to, at this early stage balance the amount of low-frequency details (floors, walls) with the more high frequency details (panels, props)

Although this is going to add an extra few days to the blockout procedure I feels it’s justified as I wouldn't want to discover 2 months down the line that I’ve created far to many props, or that I haven’t given myself enough time to add extra detail to areas that will really need it.

Another benefit of this ‘Blockout+’ is it allows me to go through every assets one at a time and identify problems or areas that I know will require addition research at this stage. For example, the two light-grids that border the inset kitchen unit. In my initial blockout these where just rectangles, however on closer inspection I realized that these will end out higher poly that I had suspected and that their molded design will affect surrounding assets geometry.

Clearly this is something that I would have noticed at some point further down the road, however I'd rather take time out now and develop it than having to constantly pause my modelling to fix issues that would crop up.

As I go through this new blockout process I’ve make a new asset list that will track the assets, the naming conventions, concerns or areas of considerations that need researching and progress that I have made.

Test shots in Unreal Engine

Next update will be a breakdown of a single asset and how I go from a simple box blockout, through my research method and decision making process, before showing the final asset.

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