Game Title: Voodudes

Team: Zombears, 15 Student Developers

Position: Animator, Environment Artist, Texture Artist

Dates: September – December 2012

Tools: 3ds Max, Mudbox, Unfold3D, Photoshop CS5, XNormal, nDo, Unreal Development Kit

Voodudes tells the story of Virgil, a voodoo doll charged with the task of saving the world of voodoo from the Shadow World unleashed by the evil Baron Samedi. Taking place in a New Orleans-inspired city, Virgil must collect all the captured Loa spirits to unlock voodoo abilities so that he may challenge the Baron.

Voodudes is a 3rd-person action game created by a team of fifteen developers for Capstone Game Production at The Guildhall at SMU. It will be featured at the Intel booth at GDC 2013 in San Francisco.

Check out the game!

My Work

My job was to animate all characters in the game, including Virgil’s basic movements, his abilities and powers, all enemy movements, and enemy attacks. All rigs and animations were created in 3ds Max and brought into UDK, where the programmers and I set up their animtrees. 

I also modeled, textured, and built collision for several environment pieces in 3ds Max and Photoshop CS5, as well as created two voodoo doll skins – one for Virgil to purchase in the in-game shop, and one for the main antagonist, Baron Samedi. My favorite task was painting several tarot cards used to tell Virgil’s story during cutscenes throughout the game.

Character Animation

 

Virgil's Abilities #2 Virgil's Abilities #3 Virgil's Abilities #1

Virgil Character Pose

Virgil is a voodoo doll set on a journey to banish the evil beings that have taken over his city. He was concepted by Ashleigh Mills and modeled, sculpted, and textured by Lisha Leston. Since he’s a stuffed doll with a goofy smile, I could be pretty silly with his animations, and that gave me a lot of flexibility to try styles of animation I hadn’t tried before.

First I sketched out the abilities according to the team’s descriptions. We prioritized the movements needed first – idle, walk/run, then Virgil’s first ability, etc. – and I proceeded to construct a biped rig and weight it to Virgil’s model in 3ds Max. The final step was to do the actual keyframe animation. I wanted to emphasize the fact that he’s just a doll, so I decided to make him somewhat clumsy and awkward. When he runs, for instance, he doesn’t seem to know that he should be moving his arms, so they fly behind him. When he jumps, he scrambles in the air as if unsure as how to land.
voodudes_virgil_animsheet

As mentioned, I also go the opportunity to create a skin customization for Virgil that the player can purchase in Mama Mambo’s shop.

virgil_scarecrow_modelsheet

voodudes_enemy_character2
The Creeps are all of the minor enemies Virgil fights on his journey to find the Loa spirits. They were concepted by Ashleigh Mills and modeled and textured by Alex Edelsward. They all share the same rig and the same basic animation sets, such as running and jumping. Each Creep, however, maintains a corresponding attack to Virgil’s, which makes them both unique and challenges the player to strategize. For instance, the Witch Doctor Creep throws bones at Virgil in the same way Virgil throws pins.

The Wardens are the bosses of each level. Like their lesser counterparts, the Creeps, the Wardens have attacks that correspond to Virgil’s, along with some extra moves that make each of them unique. These special moves required extra animations for me to design.
voodudes_enemy_animsheet_01

voodudes_baron_character2

Baron Samedi is the main antagonist of Voodudes. He sends the Creeps and Wardens after Virgil, and finally faces him one-on-one in the Shadow World at the conclusion of the game.

I created the Baron’s diffuse, specular and normal maps in addition to building his rig. I also built his nifty top hat and monocle! (You can’t try to take over the world without them!)
Voodudes_baron_animsheetbaron_skins_modelsheet_01

Environment Art

Gray_tarot_card_model_sheet_01

Gray_underground_assets_model_sheet_01

Gray_underground_assets_model_sheet_02

Market District

Spirit World

Tarot Card Reader

Crypt

Cathedral

Cathedral Courtyard Fountain

Bayou

Jackson Square Dance Party