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Underwater Scene (Fish Inlcuded)

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    Underwater Scene (Fish Inlcuded)

    Hi all!
    I just posted this up on the Polycount forums and thought I'd share here too:

    For just under two months now, I've been working on this underwater scene in UDK and I'd love to know what you guys and gals think.



    (Ignore the compression - YouTube loves to butcher my videos :P)



    As always, critique away and rip it apart if you like.
    I'd love to know your thoughts on getting the colour grading right and some help on making the lighting better especially

    #2
    Whoa, this looks fantastic, really fantastic. Jaw drop.

    But since you wanted crits also , I think fog blends nicely in the background giving a good impression of the water, but when focusing view on the sand floor up front (second and fourth pic) looks maybe a bit too bright compared to the background like that part is not underwater. Maybe fog start distance bumping in too far.
    Also I might try increasing light source angle properties to 0.5 or even 1 to soften shadows on that grass a bit since water gives some scattering.

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      #3
      Wow, amazing work.

      Is there a reason you created this? Or just for portfolio?

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        #4
        Originally posted by Count_de_Money View Post
        Whoa, this looks fantastic, really fantastic. Jaw drop.

        But since you wanted crits also , I think fog blends nicely in the background giving a good impression of the water, but when focusing view on the sand floor up front (second and fourth pic) looks maybe a bit too bright compared to the background like that part is not underwater. Maybe fog start distance bumping in too far.
        Also I might try increasing light source angle properties to 0.5 or even 1 to blur shadows on that grass a bit.
        It's funny you should point out those two images with the fog issue as they are both facing in the same direction - away from the main light source.
        The ExponentHeightFog was set to have a light aqua-blue when facing the sun and a darker sky-blue when facing away.
        I see what you mean by the sky-blue not blending so well with the foreground so I'll have a tweak, thanks!

        Edit: Now you mention it, the dynamic shadows are a bit hard. This is why it's handy having a fresh set of eyes.

        Originally posted by Carsten View Post
        Wow, amazing work.

        Is there a reason you created this? Or just for portfolio?
        Just for my rather sparse portfolio

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          #5
          Nice work, definitely the best water scene anyone's done in UDk thus far I think. I wanted to do a scene like this (among 10 million other things). If I had to crit I'd say the lighting looks too bright in a lot of it, for that depth of water (but it's understandable you don't want to wash it out too much). Also it'd be great to see some more heavy oscillating wave action on all the weeds I made a vertex shader that oscillated an anemone back and forth (tied to the wind actor) once but lost it somewhere

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            #6
            THIS is how you do an underwater scene.

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              #7
              Great job looks really good.

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                #8
                I'd increase this shadow distance of the directional light, idk how it's called, something about cascaded whatever...because atm the realtime shadows from the dir. light are fading in too close

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                  #9
                  Yeah, I've been having a lot of trouble with those shadows as there is a definite gap between different shadow cascades.
                  Having the shadows fade in further back doesn't remedy the problem much though, as it hits performance and lowering their resolution looks **** :\

                  In the meantime...

                  I have updated my current scene to a pretty much finished state, bringing in the fog a lot closer and narrowing it's falloff to really overlay that blue colour thick. (Hopefully) this gives a lot more of an 'underwater' look to the scene!

                  The god-rays from the DominantDirectionalLight have been amplified and the water surface has had its bloom exponent multiplied by 50.






                  With these settings, the stills really don't do it justice, mind.

                  I think I might leave it at that for now and move on to something drastically different such as a cityscape.
                  Thanks for your help everyone!

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                    #10
                    looks great

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                      #11
                      it looks great and awesome etc but something still doesn't feel right - something with lighting and colors
                      light definitely looks too strong at least on close parts

                      how deep is your water ?

                      on those bright parts where there is no fog sun light looks as if there is H-bomb experiment just above the surface - WAY too bright and saturated
                      at this depth of sea you should already loose some of saturation and get some bluish tint
                      for example if you look at the fog - something that is lets say 5 meters from camera and its already 30% mixed with blue fog color - then if you are 5m under the sea level your light should get some of that tint and loose its energy

                      most underwater photos look pretty bluish and darker and desaturated with bluish tint on top except on those photos where someone is using extra light /flash

                      also, since the water is not perfectly calm there should be some of the caustics effects on everything

                      you could add some post processing for better control of colors and you might use depth information for controling some of saturation and coloring

                      one way of faking stuff could be if lets say you use some bluish directional light to give everything the "darker" look so that lighting would match better on far elements and to use some spotlight /pointing in same direction as your directional light/ that would make things brighter and not too blue/too dark around your camera (it should move with the camera to get that feeling)

                      chromatic abberation could help a lot too
                      just an idea - you might add some slight chromatic abberation effect on caustic texture too

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                        #12
                        Thanks for the breakdown @Xenobite!
                        I got the "H-Bomb" water idea from Gears 3, which uses a similar overdriven emissive exponent that works to make the water seem darker in comparison without losing visibility. Obviously it hasn't come through particularly well.

                        I tried making more of a realistic post-process lighting type, such as more of a blue colour-grading, but that ended up losing a lot of the vibrancy of the scene and made the whole thing seem very bland. I'm not saying it can't be done, but my attempts were rather poor.

                        I'll try using that moveable blueish directional light that follows the camera too. Thanks for the help!

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                          #13
                          The ripples on the boat don't seem quite right... too slow maybe? Not enough of them? I'm not sure, they just feel off. Other than that it's a fantastic scene.

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                            #14
                            Overall the scene looks really good. The only crits I have are some things already mentioned. First of all you need more caustics on the ocean floor and reef surfaces. Secondly most of your fish are like 2d sprites and when you pass by them the flip and look really bad. Last thing is the lighting... just try and add some more bluish/green or darken up the water slightly.. its too bright for even 10ft of water. Like I said nice work and keep updating. Thanks!

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                              #15
                              Beautiful SirCalalot, very inspiring!

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