CYBERPUNK CHALLENGE | "Heaven's Hell" - Update 4

General / 16 March 2020

Technically this is the fifth update as I somehow completely missed making a blog post after the last major update. Either way, we're now at about the halfway mark through the challenge and it's been really great and inspiring to see so many wonderful and talented individuals putting up some excellent pieces!

Since my last post, I've set up my master materials, replaced a bunch of blockout pieces with more fleshed out props and reworked the lighting a little. I still wasn't satisfied with the direction I was going with the lighting and kept going back and forth several times between different colour schemes. Finally, I decided that in order to get a better read of things and to focus myself, I had threw some textures, which is how I ended up with this:

This was working a little better than the previous interations but it still didn't feel quite right. After a few more tweaks to the lighting and materials, I ended up with something more like this:

But it still didn't feel quite right either, I realized that the composition wasn't really working and that the main feature piece was not bold enough and needed to be fleshed out some more. A friend of mine suggested something like a globe for the centrepiece. I wasn't completely sold on the idea at first as I still wanted to play with the idea of halo's / rings, but I became inspired by different orrery's and the idea then became to encapsulate an orrery of sorts made up of several different halos, with one larger one looming over the top of them.

I needed to also fill add more form and shapes to the lighting fixtures on the sides and went with a retro-futuristic aesthetic from the reference sheet. I used an IES texture to add some interesting shape and form to the light itself and had two separate lights, one pointing up and the other pointing down. This added verticality to the scene, so I decided to add some horizontal lighting to the wall panellings on the side. The next thing I did was to add some additional floor lighting, pointing upwards to lift the scene a bit more.

The last next big thing I needed to work on was the giant multi-screen array in the background. This had to be kept somewhat subtle so as to not draw too much attention. But I still wanted something interesting.  I knew I wanted some kind of glitch effect interlaced between two different types of images. This glitch effect is partly inspired by the Watch Dogs launch screen. I ended up settling on using two different material instances for the two different type of images that I wanted to  have on the screen and layered several vertical and horizontal gradients as masks attached to a panner that would do a time skip at random intervals. Eventually, I managed to work towards something I was satisfied with.

Things are starting to finally come together and I'm excited to see how everyone else's work progresses! With much of the foreground elements completed or fleshed out, I'll be spending this week concentrating on the main bar area and fleshing that part up a little more.