For this project we were tasked to create an advertisement for a board game called ‘Pirates Gold’. As the idea of the project was already decided for us, there wasn’t much further planning for pre-production. I did, however, plan on adding an intro sequence and an end sequence to the ad. I also wanted to add another scene in the actual project which turned out to be a crab jumping around the trees. This was made during the actual scene production and didn’t have much thought prior to starting the project.
All of the assets excluding a treasure chest had already been made for us.
The only model required for us to make for this project was a treasure chest. This was done following a series of video tutorials to make sure our chest looked like it fitted into the scene. This process took a long time to achieve as this was the first time I had ever used 3DS Max, and I had made a couple of mistakes along the way. 3DS max also crashed a couple of times which meant reverting back to a previous save.
The lid and chest base were made as two separate objects, for animating purposes they were combined using a parented control for the whole chest.
Unwrapping the chest model proved to be a tedious task. Again, this was accomplished by following along with a video tutorial. I ended up going through the tutorial twice, as the first time through I snapped the vertices the wrong way on one side of the chest. As I was unable to go back to an earlier save or undo the snapped vertices, I decided it was easier to start again.
Although it was a rather frustrating process, it was interesting to see how UV Mapping worked.
Texturing the chest turned out to be a pretty fun experience. This was done by following another video tutorial. I used different layers for each of the elements. This added to the overall aesthetics of the chest and gave a nice overall look.
As I don’t own a graphics tablet, it became difficult to get some realistic looking cracks in the wood. This was, however, solved by using the pen tool and filling the stroke path. It didn’t have the same effect that a graphics tablet would give though.
Because I was dealing with an object that didn’t required much animating, rigging was fairly straight forward. I made a ‘chest control’ which was parented to the other two chest objects. This allowed me to move, stretch and distort the entire chest.
I also inset the pivot point of the lid so that when it was rotated it did so from where the hinges should align to.
Animating the camera and the assets was fun to play around with. With the chest I animated the lid moving when the coins popped out, I also added stretching to it when it lands in the scene. I initially animated the main camera movements, but that became tedious and so I decided to use a path for the camera instead.
The crabs were already rigged up, and with that I was able to animate the claw movements and arm movements. I had a couple of crabs in the scene, two of which jump into the scene whilst the camera rotates around the board. The third crab, which I focus more on, jumps around the trees and shoots out of the chest. I had planned on making the movements of this crab much smoother, but ran out of time.
For my scene I decided to have my objects fall from the sky in a sequence. The space around the board is pretty balanced with each of the assets, and the grass surrounds the sides and the back off the board.
Two cameras are set up for the scene, the first which rotates around the board along a path. I initially animated this camera without a path but it was much more difficult and decided to use the path to animate the cameras movement instead.
The second camera is much closer to the board and mainly focuses on the chest.
I used a Skylight to bump up the overall brightness and a directional area light to help with the shadows. When initially putting in the area light, it was too high and caused shadows to appear from the floating objects. This was solved simply by lowering the light and increasing the radius.
The Directional light was also initially on too much of an angle, meaning that the shadows from my assets were covering a lot more of the board. I didn’t realise this until after rendering my final project, I later went back and angled the light higher so the shadows appeared smaller.
This took a long time to complete. Each camera angle was rendered separately and because I have a lot of frames in my project it took a while to render. I also bumped up the quality a bit more meaning the process took even longer.
The making of the intro was used using a couple of different tutorials online (linked here and here), the burning effect, the embers in the background and the words that ‘swoop’ into view and disappear. These were all combined to make a flaming steel effect. By adding music I was also able to somewhat sync the text for the intro.
I later added the “coming this summer” title as a filler between the money falling on the ground and the crab landing on the ground. I Also added transition effects and audio effects.
Using premier, editing the project turned out to be relatively simple. After adding all my rendered images, intro, end sequence, and music, I just had to adjust the music to match it up with the project and intro.
I really enjoyed this project, and as I was putting together the scene I came up with lots of ideas I wanted to implement, but wouldn’t have had the time.