I am working on the environment for Imperium. We are using Unreal Engine 4, and I work with another artist to prepare our city kit including modeling, texturing and setting up.
Working with a small art team with a big scope for the game is my original motivation of creating procedural generating blueprints and tools in Unreal Engine 4 for level designer to quickly build environment, and easily maintain and manage large amount of assets for artists. This will allow us to same a lot of time when it comes to level building.
Procedure City Kit
Our environment combines Victorian architecture style with Scifi elements. That is, we will need many similar pieces around the city. As a result, I decided to make blueprints in UE4 for the level designer to quickly build buildings. Since I have made a building generator tool in Maya, I took the same thought process combined with spline in UE4 to achieve the goal. Also, I grouped different assets in the same category together to manage the large amount of assets. Level designers can easily switch the meshes/texture through the blueprint, and I set up the code the way that artists can easily add in more assets if they want.
Example BP for the city kit
Master Material / Vertex Painting
To add difference and uniqueness to the architecture, our artist and I decided to allow color changing on certain part of the mesh (including light from the windows etc.) I made a master material that take color map, and calculate the color changing amount for the piece.
I also set up master materials to allow vertex painting using height map one low poly meshes.
(Pictures Coming Soon)
We decide add neon into the environment as part of our scifi elements. The blueprint I created allows the level designer to easily changes the shape as well as the texture of the neon sign, and manipulate the light effect along with many other attributes at the same time.
I used a master Neon material to manipulate all the attribute and create the mesh and material based on user’s choice through blueprint. I also set up the UV for the board meshes so that we can use one texture for all different shapes.