Those animations look amazing!! Great job!
Very cool review of the making of Spellbreak. Would be even more cool to see some videos inside UE4 showing how they do a few very specific things unique to them.
This was so helpful for me. I'm hoping to adapt your tutorial to pull off something similar comparing modern satellite imagery with historical maps. No topo, so my steps should be simpler, but I'm a novice with Blender and you've really helped. Thanks!
A couple of weeks ago Bethesda asked to terminate the development of the unofficial DOOM II remake, conducted by Eyal Medina. The game was built on Unreal Engine 4 and featured all the iconic levels and weapons from the original shooter rendered in full 3D with effects, particles, and cool lighting. Unfortunately, we will never see this game released. Thankfully, the game’s developer was kind enough to talk with 80.lv about his project and his plans for the future.
About Eyal Medina
My name is Eyal Medina, I’m 28-years-old and living in Israel. I have always liked games except I enjoyed watching them more than actually playing them. I treat them kind of like they are movies, and this is why visuals are very important to me. These days I’m working as a programmer and making simple apps, but not games. I really like to develop games in my free time, which is where I can focus more on sculpting and other artistic features.
Start and Inspiration
When I had my second computer (Pentium I 166 MHz), it came with some games on it (with some blue custom DOS menu) and one of them was DOOM II. I remember the first time I saw it, I was blown away. I didn’t play it as much as I actually wanted to though, I was too scared [laughs]. This was the first awesome game I’ve ever played, and it got burned into my brain since then.
All the other games didn’t stand out to me like this one did, and at some point I wondered how cool it might be to make my own game exactly the way that I want. So I continued to dream about doing this for a few years. Finally, at some point in my life I decided I wanted to actually do something about it so I went on the computer and googled “how to make games” (or something like that) and I found out about programming, graphics, etc.
Making the visuals was a lot more exciting to me than programming the game. So I decided to learn to create some animations. I learned programs like 3ds Max and Adobe After Effects. Although I did some nice stuff, I got bored after a while. After that I did research into programming (which wasn’t so fun at the beginning) and learned some cool stuff. However, I needed to build something to actually progress so I had to decide what game I was going to make and then DOOM II came to my head. I then thought to myself that if it was made today with today’s visuals, it would be so awesome. So I got right to it.
I started it in Blender Game Engine (I thought was enough for what I want, but obviously I had no idea) and then moved to Unity 3D which is a great engine, but it didn’t give me the visuals I need to make a good looking remake. Then I moved to UDK (Unreal Engine 3’s workflow was not so friendly, but I just had to for the sake of having the best visuals I can get). Then when Unreal Engine 4 came out, I started all over again because the graphics were even better. You get the best graphics an indie developer can dream of. Of course there are more, but this one is very friendly and has an awesome support and community. Working with physics was also a blast. It was a lot easier and I got much better results compared to any other game engine that I’ve tried.
Tools and Middleware
I really like open source softwares, so I used:
Techniques for Effects and Trees
There is no special technique behind the lighting and shadows. Unreal Engine 4 just makes everything look awesome. The spark effects were easy too because a friend I used to work with on some project (which ended pretty fast due to some disagreements) assembled this effect from sample particle systems that were provided by Epic for free. So I just used it on my project.
With the trees I just took some trees from SpeedTree’s free samples. The materials it came with already interacted with Unreal Engine’s wind system. Basically, I just had to put it in the scene. Boom!
Conflict with Bethesda & Future Plans
It kind of sucked at first, but I just had to ask Bethesda for permission. I didn’t want to continue working on the project more and more just to get it all shut down by them later. So I guess it’s all for the best.
After all that happened, I had to think of what to do next. I just felt like I had to do something, so I decided that I would make my own project. Currently I’m working something that will have Doom-like gameplay, only with different monsters, levels, textures, etc. The biggest difference though, is that the user will be able to build his own maps, and import his own sounds and textures. So basically, this game will be moddable to any old school game with Doom-like behavior. Therefore, the project’s name is “OldSchool Nightmare”. More info is coming soon (hopefully).