Procedural generation of 3D models

10/25/2018 at 07:13
This video demonstrates the range of 3D models that can be generated with the technology being developed for Cybernation Online. All the models in the video are defined by code, and can be modified programmatically. The system allows to have static and script-controlled components in the same models. The majority of mechanical objects in the game will be generated with this system, ranging from robots and their weapons, to spaceships and huge orbital stations.

Let's look at the process of generation of a model like this one:

The main body of the spider is created with an algorithm that given a set of 3D boxes wraps them with metal to produce a convex polyhedron. With only one box the model looks like a... box. Then another box is added in the same plane, but rotated 90 degrees:

After adding 2 more boxes on top and 1 on the bottom, the body gets its final shape. Assignment of materials is also controlled programmatically. Cast iron looks better for the body.

The model definition language allows to select faces satisfying certain criteria, for example, all corner faces of the model, and then specify what has to be done to them. In this case, fringe attachments are created first, and then little boxes are attached to the fringes that will eventually become the robot legs:

Then the end butts of the legs are selected in the similar way, and an extrusion modifier is applied that creates a few side faces, and shifts the ends towards the floor. Little details such as red shoes on the legs give the model a better look:

Of course, that's not the final look of the model. It will have to have more details, and better materials to make it production quality. All of this is coming.

Now let's take a look at other objects that can be generated with the system. A space station is one of them:

Robot weapons are also generated with the same system, and then they are attached to the robot bases:

Generated models are hierarchical. For example, spaceships flying through space can have surfaces that serve as a floor for the robots:

The power of this engine will allow you to design and manufacture your own robots, spaceships, buildings and weapons in the game. Just imagine: when you colonize a planet and build a secret underground lab to engineer new designs of the robots, the produced robots will have their unique look, animation, textures and properties!
10/25/2018 at 09:39
That's a really cool system! Nice to see some progress.
10/25/2019 at 15:13
10/28/2019 at 13:12
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