Game Modeling in MODO: Tips and Tricks

Game Modeling in MODO: Tips and Tricks

Rakan Khamash discussed his workflow in MODO, shared his first impressions of it and talked about its advantages and compatibility with other tools.

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Introduction

My name is Rakan Khamash, I'm a 3D generalist artist with a passion for making pretty much everything that looks interesting/fun to me (characters/props/scenes) with both stylized and realistic looks.
I started my journey back in 2006 when a friend introduced me to the 3D world through the software Lightwave, where he had built a simple house from cubes and cylinders and was really interested to know more about it, I would consider most of my experience is self-taught but that being said, I had a great start with amazing friends who guided me and kept me motivated to learn more. (Thanks, Yazan Malkosh & Zaid Khurma)
I worked on all kind of projects (cartoons, products, cinematics, games, industrial, and more)
I always work on something, either to have fun or to learn some new things or find faster cleaner ways to improve my workflow and skills, recently I’ve been doing a lot of Overwatch/stylized characters and guns because I absolutely love that art style and chunkiness it packs, and it has been my favorite style to recreate for the past 10+ years and was one of the main reasons I joined the best company in the world, Blizzard!

The Main Principles 

Never stop learning new tools/techniques. Working with a bunch of companies with different needs made me learn so many workflows and approaches to complete my tasks, such as new texturing software like Substance Painter, or how to read references and shape better and translate that to my modeling and detailing process. And some other stuff like Golden ratios/Anatomy/Curves/Spacing, and so on.

Working in MODO

I have used MODO for 7+ years.
The second I started MODO I was like…WOW! This has to be the most organized & clean user-friendly layout I have ever seen, it takes away that scary feeling that you are programming or scripting and just displays the tools in a way that makes you feel like an artist, at least, that’s how I felt about it.
I have used many software before but I always say that MODO by far is the most friendly and approachable to new users and artists.

The neat and organized look is great but that’s not the main reason I loved MODO, it was the modeling tools and rendering features.
The tools MODO offers and new features that are being added consistently are just something that always kept me hooked.
Render features such as “render passes and fast real-time preview” saved me hours of extra work and got me great results in no time.

MODO is well explained by Bruce Lee - formless, shapeless. You can add/remove/custom make anything you need in your workflow. You put MODO in a gaming environment, it becomes a powerful tool to create and prepare assets for any gaming engine.
You put MODO in a Product environment, you can always count on it for high res final clean renders with fast render times. Interiors or exteriors? No problem, it got you covered with all that realistic natural-looking scenes and noise-free renders, and the list goes on and on.

Having premade Shaders/Materials/Light setups and rig tools to test on your models and have variations in seconds saved me days of work. 

Combining MODO with Other Tools

The modeling tools are world-class, super effective and easy to use and can be edited and integrated into any workflow, not to mention the great sculpting tools and the ability to handle high res meshes efficiently.
One of my favorite modeling tools is MeshFusion, it gives you complete freedom to design and experiment in a non-destructive way and have a clean mesh with pretty much automating the entire process. 

The Game Modeling


Having tools to model quickly both High and Low polys, then creating efficient UVs and using shaders like the rounded edge and baking that to the low poly was super handy. I remember creating my full Dota2 set in MODO,it was the first time I try that workflow and MODO just made it a fun experience.

Tips for Beginners

Don’t be afraid to try new things, such as nodes and modeling tools like MeshFusion, and make sure to add the cool stuff MODO offers to your workflow, like Light setups and Material libraries, play around with these and learn how they were made and the process behind them, all that will add to your knowledge and will help you improve and make the process a lot more fun and less time-consuming.
Also, MODO plays very well with other software, so it can be used anywhere no matter what type of projects are thrown your way.
I mean it was used to model the Mark 1 suit from Iron Man. Do I need to say more? 

Rakan Khamash, Game Modeler

Interview conducted by Ellie Harisova

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