Interview with Adrian Bugnar, Co-Founder and Art Director of Tractor, Set, GO!
It’s been a while since our last interview with Tractor, Set, GO! founder Andreea Cristea; now is the time to continue our series of interviews. This interview is based on a conversation I had with Adrian Bugnar, Art Director and co-founder of Tractor, Set, GO!(TSG). In it, we discuss his role in TSG and the Hash Rush project, talk about the difference between 3D art and concept art, and much more. Take a look below!
I like seeing our team at Tractor, Set, GO! work well together, and seeing that they enjoy working on this beast of a project that is called Hash Rush. / Adrian Bugnar
- Hi Adrian, thanks for taking the time for this interview! Could you tell me, what are you doing at the moment — or what were you doing just before we started this interview?
Hello Jochem. I was just talking with the 3D artists in our team about the various stages of development their current projects are in. Some of them just started working on “the Ruins”, which is a group of assets heavily linked to the lore of Hash Rush. Other artists are working on two of the smaller creatures in the Hash Rush universe.
- That sounds great. Well, to start this interview, could you briefly introduce yourself? Who are you, what do you do?
My name is Adrian Bugnar and I am one of the founders of Tractor, Set, GO! game studio. We’re based in Cluj-Napoca (Romania) and we handle the game development part of the project. In other words, we do the coding and assets creation for Hash Rush.
- Great, so how did you come to hear about the Hash Rush project?
The first time I heard about Hash Rush was when Kris and Nathan came to us in search of someone to help bring this bold project to fruition. I instantly loved it, and I am glad to be part of this great endeavour to create such an incredible game.
- What are your main responsibilities in the Hash Rush team? And what are your main responsibilities in Tractor, Set, Go!?
Since our game studio is small, I do a little bit of everything. My official title is Art Director and Lead Animator for Hash Rush. However, I also handle things like line management and other problem-solving tasks.
- Who do you work with most, on a day-to-day basis?
I keep a very close daily relationship with our 3D artists: Ale, Denisa, Razvan and Matei. Together we figure out the best way to create content for the game. I also work closely with Horea, our Technical Director. And on a weekly basis, I take part in general meetings with the project’s leadership and also with Dendy and Ng, the concept artists.
- I see! But then, what’s the difference between 3D artists and concept artists? And what different assets do they produce?
So a concept artist’s scope is to create hand-drawn ideas on a model. It’s also to look at any particularities of the model and make sure all relevant elements appear in the concept. The end product of a concept artist is a drawing of a 3D model. In contrast, the 3D artist’s job is more technical. He has to actually build the concept he received from the concept artist in 3D software. The 3D artist’s end product is the actual 3D model that you can see in the game.
- Right, that’s a great explanation! So what is your daily routine? How do you go to work and what does a regular day look like?
Before I go to work, I try to spend as much time with my one-year-old daughter. Seeing her laugh makes my day. I usually ride my bicycle to work. The first half of the day, I oversee the 3D-asset production pipeline: creating, assigning tasks and fixing visual or technical problems that the team might encounter. In the second part of the day, I implement and test whatever work has been done. And if time allows it, I work on asset production myself. This includes for instance 3D modelling, sculpting and animation. I usually spend the evenings with my family.
- That seems like a fulfilling day. So as an Art Director, you both work on a higher level, and make art concepts and animations yourself?
As I touched on a bit earlier, I handle the general art direction and work in production if I can. I also do some concept art, but just as a means of communicating my ideas to Nathan, our creative director, and Dendy and Ng, our concept artists.
- What are some differences between working on Hash Rush and some of the other projects you worked on with TSG?
Well, at TSG we’ve done a lot of different projects over the years. From commercial animations and short feature films to VR apps and of course games. I must say that Hash Rush is one of our largest projects. Our studio is the biggest it has ever been, both in terms of scope, but also in terms of talent (programmers and artists).
- What do you like most about Hash Rush and creating Hash Rush? And what are you most proud of so far (with regard to work you did for HR)?
Hmm, that is a hard question. There are a lot of things I like about this project. But If I were to choose, I must say that I like seeing my team working well together, and seeing that they enjoy working on this beast of a project that is called Hash Rush.
- That sounds great! And so you must be a gamer yourself as well? What is your current favourite platform and game?
Yes, I am a gamer. My favourite platform is “PC master race”, haha. And I currently play an RPG called Darkest Dungeon; I’d definitely recommend it.
- Great, thanks so much Adrian. Is there anything else you want to share with the Hash Rush community?
Well, I just want to thank everyone for following and supporting the project. That means a great deal to me.
That marks the end of the talk we had with Adrian. In the next few weeks, we’ll pick up the pace with our interview series, and sit down with our new Marketing Manager, Matthew Chuen and Japanese Community Manager, Yoshikazu ‘Yoshi’ Osada. Stay tuned!