AlienRoosterHead

The rooster has been my personal symbol throughout my whole life. It all started with a plush rooster toy that I got as a xmas present from my mother back in ’82, and ever since the theme has followed with me here and there over the years, eg. in my drawings, as a tattoo on my left arm, and finally as a source of inspiration for SUNREAL. Even though not as clear or distinguishable, certain bird-like features on the characters/lifeforms all derive from the rooster in me. Now, as I’ve tended to draw a small rooster head to accompany my signature on greeting cards, guest books etc. for as long as I can remember, I finally decided to give it a SUNREAL treatment and bring it into my graphics and game project as well.

Along this new logo, my artist & developer label henceforth is ”AlienRoosterHead”.

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Avianoid & Upgrades

”From fungal origins in the liquid depths through amphibian ways of life to
avian lifeforms taking over the skies before making its way even further to the
stars.”

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Finally got my new workstation up and running. Rocking a brand new Threadripper 1950X 3,4 GHz and 32 GB RAM inside. The latest image took 1d 07h 03m 22s to render, and I don’t even want to think about those many days it would have taken with my old FX-8350 machine. The CPU temperature seems to cap at 68 °C during rendering, so I’m happy with the Kraken X62 liquid cooling as well.

Also upgraded my old Corel X3 license to the Graphics Suite 2017. Had I waited around 3 weeks longer, I could have got the version 2018 that was released just 5 days ago. =D

The original image in 1280 x 720 resolution can be found in the POV-Ray Newsgroups.

Workflow

To open my workflow and use of programs to some extent, my main software is POV-Ray that I’ve been into since ’93. All final scenes are built and rendered with POV, and especially all planetary images are done solely using the POV scene description language (SDL). My nr. one modeller is TopMod which is a nice and small topological mesh modeller that I’ve used in all organic looking and ”loopy” models (creatures, ships, constructs). For further subdivisions I use Wings 3D, as for some reason it has given me the best results so far in that purpose. Some geometry adjustments here and there has been done in Silo 2 Pro. Not every model needs such fixing, but it’s a good piece of software to have at hands when needed anyway. All my external models are saved in .obj format and I’ve used PoseRay for .obj to .inc conversions for the final scene setups in POV. For adding text or lines on the images I use Corel Photo Paint X3. I could perhaps buy a newer version at some point though.. No post-processing done on the images otherwise. My aim has always been to get the best and finest possible results from POV itself.

For building up the actual game engine, structure and system I’m going to use GameMaker Studio 2. Still learning but getting there. Of course, as a backup plan I’m also having a mostly functional beta level game engine coded in QB64, so in case everything else fails, that’s my route to salvation.

(Oh, and for the animation posted earlier, the images from POV were put together with Veedub64.)

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UI Screen Preview

The user interface will be minimal just like the keyboard-only controls. The images are located on the top left in the UI grid, the alternatives are numbered from 1-5 depending on location and actions available on the bottom left, the examinations, narrations and other story related texts appear on the top right, and the bottom right area is reserved for additional info such as newly discovered locations, recently initiated actions or received items to make it easier to keep track on what has been done already and what should be done next.

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Fractured Destination

Although there will be only still images in SUNREAL, last year I made a test animation of one of the locations in-game just for fun and to try out some ideas for possible future uses. Who knows, perhaps there will be also animations coming up later on.

(On a more technical note, the animation is a quick and rough test on the clock variable in POV-Ray. Zooming in to an isosurface object surrounded by a scattering media with emission. The scene includes also radiosity, focal blur and fiddling around with the camera angle. The animation consists of 2 separate parts combined.)