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transcengopher

Slow down on animal model details

Mob Models   35 members have voted

  1. 1. Select any and all animals that you feel have models that are too detailed and should be simplified to fit with Minecraft's style. (You can check more than one box at a time).

    • Pheasants
      0
    • Deer
      5
    • Bears - New Model
      2
    • Bears - Current Model
      0
    • Cows (Horns)
      0
    • Roosters
      0
    • Pigs (Tusks)
      0
    • Fish - New Mob
      3
    • Sheep (Horns)
      0
    • None - I think all of Dunk's models are fine.
      27
  2. 2. Do you think that all of the custom animal models in TFC look good alongside the vanilla ones?

    • Yes
      10
    • No - The custom models should be simplified.
      3
    • No - TFC should add new, more detailed models to replace the vanilla ones.
      22

Please sign in or register to vote in this poll.

46 posts in this topic

What the title says - as time goes on, I see more and more steps towards making animal models closer to how they are looking in the real world. I thought about this and realized this isn't as amazing an option as that might sound.

 

Reasons:

1. Style compromising. Minecraft has quite distinct blocky style to it. Mostly. More often than not shapes are parallel or perpendicular to each other, which fits well with the looks of the rest of this world. Higher model quality looks out of place in this.

2. Animation quality. There seems to be a great deal of compromises done in the engine's innate animation handlers and providers - models do not have turning, jumping, falling animation states, walking animation triggers on any movement, including entity being moved via minecart. I bet there's no real hooks for resolving these problems either. Now, for simplified default models that isn't a problem. However, as detail count increases, it starts to look more and more stupid. There's a reason "big" developers are starting to rely on motion capture as graphics get better.

3. AI. Not that it is an insolvable problem, but I myself will actually expect more detailed entities to behave more life-like. As far as I understand, these things are a massive PITA to code into minecraft, which is the reason we had so little in terms of mods that add and/or improve this particular aspect of the game as opposed to mods that simply add some plain blocks with "magic" machines and some tools (no matter the actual mechanics of said blocks and tools), and considering that most of aggressive mobs just charge the player head on, occassionally taking detours for navigating pits and walls.

4. Performance. This one is miniscule and the least of a concern out of all three, but I just felt like having three bullets to my point, so it's in there too.

 

I'm not saying I don't like models Dunk is making, mind. All I'm saying is these models are far better being used somewhere else, and for TFC we need to have simplified ones with a not a lot more details than in current vanilla minecraft models have. I'd say twice as much body parts (that would make 12-18 pieces) should be a max number.

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I'm going to try to take as objective a perspective as possible with this.

 

First off, I think vanilla models look like crap. Maybe there is a style to it, but that doesn't mean it's good. I'm certainly not the first mod developer to introduce highly detailed models to minecraft. I don't want this to sound like I'm just trashing your argument because I don't like it, but I'm going to say that I plan to continue modeling animals in TFC the way I feel they should be modeled. I don't think I've gone drastically overboard on the pheasants, chickens or the modified vanilla mobs and I don't plan to alter my art style either. The only parameters I have in mind when designing them is whether it will hurt performance. Beyond that, I want to create what I feel suits the animal I'm implementing. I resign myself to using the cubes that minecraft provides, but I try to use them in ways that still evoke the form of the animal.

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I like the new animal models but their movement needs some tweaking. Bears are too slow and deer zip around so fast it looks like they teleport.

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Through the correct usage of cubes alone you can make a perfect circle, very very hard and takes a lot of cubes but it is possible so in theory Dunk may well be using the cubes but to create custom shapes (Deer tails, Pheasant models etc.)I do have to say I agree with the actual animation side of your post however to do so would be complex and disallow some users the ability of using the mod, perhaps as a compromise the usage of more player animations... sit, crouch, lie down (Prone) and perhaps new climbing and swimming animations would perhaps please you...

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Dunk knows my thoughts on this and lets just say reason #1 hits it home :)

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I love Dunk's animals. If the new animals are going to fallow the same style they will be beautiful.

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I will just put out there that I do agree with both reasons #1 and #2. To me the new bear model just looks out of place, and the existing deer model is just derpy and ugly when you watch it animate. Considering that two members of staff have a different opinion compared to the member that is actually making the models, it would definitely be interesting to get more opinions from the players on how they feel about it. For reference, I will include some images in this post of models I think correctly fit the Minecraft style, versus models that just go overboard and don't fit into this game. I'm going to go ahead and do a mini hijack on the OP and add in a poll to this thread so we can get a better idea of what people think.

 

Good Models:

 

New Fish (They could use a little less detail considering they are so small anyways, but the general appearance of them is blocky and fine):

 

Posted Image

 

Pheasants (Nice and blocky, not very many moving parts):

 

Posted Image

 

Roosters (Very similar to the vanilla chicken, fits in perfectly. The tail is eccentric, but not overly so.)

 

 

Posted Image

 

 

Bad Models that don't fit the style of Minecraft and therefore TFC:

 

New Bears (Way too many pieces, can only imagine the animation):

 

Posted Image

 

Deer (Look really bad when they are moving around, just way too many moving parts):

 

Posted Image

 

 

 

Sidenote:

 

Another massive thing that needs to be put into consideration with these as well as that the intricate models have texture files that are almost impossible to understand what actually goes where. I myself have gotten complaints from texture pack artists that making new textures for the custom mobs is almost impossible because the file just doesn't make sense.

 

 

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If this really seems to be an issue, I'm prepared to offer alternatives to the more complex mobs.

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I'm not particularly sure why the mobs need to be equivalently detailed. Is anyone going to put a pen filled with bears right next to thier sheep pens and think, wow, those sheep should be more detailed?

 

This is of course assuming the complex models don't have adverse effects on gameplay. Obviously, if the complex models lead to A.I. issues or create exploits (mob attacks too slow for example, or has movement issues), there is a problem.

 

As far as I'm considered, as long is the model maker is also the one designing the animations, they can be as complicated as that person wants (assuming complicated models don't cause gameplay issues)

 

And as a side note, having the "I don't think the models are too complicated" or "I like the new models" choice actually state the models are perfect is probably too strong of a wording. Models can always be improved.

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As far as I'm considered, as long is the model maker is also the one designing the animations, they can be as complicated as that person wants (assuming complicated models don't cause gameplay issues)

 

And as a side note, having the "I don't think the models are too complicated" or "I like the new models" choice actually state the models are perfect is probably too strong of a wording. Models can always be improved.

 

Changed the word "perfect" to instead say "fine" so you'll stop reading into it that much. It's not like people aren't going to click that answer on the poll because it "can always be improved."

 

And the problem of the matter is that the model maker is also the one designing the animations, but the animations still look bad. The problem isn't that it is causing gameplay issues, the problem is that Bioxx and I have both stated that we think its ugly.

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Update:

 

 

I've come up with a stripped down deer model that I think is still deer-like enough. I had trouble trying to reduce it because deer heads have a weird shape and no single-cube head felt right. There's no texture and I haven't added the right half of the body (that will just be a copy-paste of the left half) but you can see there are only 14 cubes in the deer, with another 8 needed to complete it (3 for antlers, 1 for ear, 2 each for front and back legs)

 

The legs in this version are only made of two blocks, but that's still more than the one that vanilla sees reasonable. I just think deer feel to nimble to be swinging giant stilt-legs around when they move.

 

Posted Image

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Soooooo much better in my opinion. The simplified legs and body fit in much better with the style of all the default mobs. The only thing I would change would be to make the ears more like in the old model, instead of sticking out straight sideways.

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I think there needs to be a middle ground.  I like the detail of the animals, but think they look a little out of place when seen in combination with some of the items that are just icons (pots, campfires, rocks/sticks on the ground, etc.)  If those items are going to stay simple to help with performance, I think that some simplification of the animals would help TFC be more consistent throughout the mod. I really like the simplified deer that Dunk just posted.  I do not think that elements that distinguish genders, such as horns, should be removed.  The vanilla game doesn't have the realism that makes such features necessary, but TFC does. Removing gender differences would reduce the believability of the mobs, but it is possible that some could be done in a texture pack.

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After some feedback from kitty, I have newer images of the deer:

 

First part, showing minor ear adjustments and the head from more angles

Posted Image

Second part showing the neck being more vertical

Posted Image

Took a second look at it from a distance against some pictures of a few real deer (I'm using white-tailed for reference) and I've made a few minor adjustments to the head and the back legs

Posted Image

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Double posting, but I want to separate these two.

 

I feel confident with the model I've come up with. I've added all the body parts and adjusted them as I need. With texture artists in mind, I've set up a diagram to help.

 

First, the finished deer model: 

 

Posted ImagePosted Image

 

 

Next, the texture diagram:

 

Posted Image

 

 

Finally, the texture at the proper resolution:

 

Posted Image

 

 

I don't have a texture for it yet, but maybe some of you can give it a shot :)

 

I've been using a few images as reference, so i figure they might be the best option for designing textures:

adult male: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/b/b7/White-tailed_deer.jpg

fawn: http://www.donaldmjones.com/data/photos/2035_1whitetail_deer35804d.jpg

 

Two textures would be required: adult and fawn.

For females I only have to hide the antlers while rendering, so they don't need their own texture.

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Personally I like All of Dunks models and to be honest TFC is an overhaul mod so why are we trying to match Minecraft when TFC pretty much changes all the base vanilla things anyway.

 

Surely we should be looking at making vanilla mobs "Fit" with TFC not other way around.

 

If other texture artists are having issues (I am a texture artist too) then maybe Dunk can provide help like above on what goes where. I just feel it is a step backwards to "Dumb Down" TFC mobs to match Vanilla.

 

We all know the vanilla ones aren't great (Points at new vanilla Rabbit as proof!)

 

Anyway this is my two pence worth and Dunk I back you 110% in your modelling

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Wow, I the new deer looks amazing :)  Awesome work dunk! I really like it.

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Personally I like All of Dunks models and to be honest TFC is an overhaul mod so why are we trying to match Minecraft when TFC pretty much changes all the base vanilla things anyway.

 

Surely we should be looking at making vanilla mobs "Fit" with TFC not other way around.

 

If other texture artists are having issues (I am a texture artist too) then maybe Dunk can provide help like above on what goes where. I just feel it is a step backwards to "Dumb Down" TFC mobs to match Vanilla.

 

We all know the vanilla ones aren't great (Points at new vanilla Rabbit as proof!)

 

Anyway this is my two pence worth and Dunk I back you 110% in your modelling

awww

 

But for serious though, the deer was the second model I made (after the bear). I can't claim it was perfect or is still works with the mod now that it's more fleshed out. (I believe I made it summer of 2012) and now the mod has a certain aesthetic to it that the deer may not entirely fit anymore.

 

Thanks for your support, I appreciate it :)

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Good work Dunk! The simplified deer model is an adequate compromise without too many small parts. As to how it's going to animate, we will see.

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I think the new deer model is much better than the old one.

 

I'm editing the starting post, actually, adding a new bullet that I've forgotten at the time of writing it.

 

Also, seeing as there's this texture map now, I think it should be made for each complex model in a bit higher resolution, given a legend in form of signed parts, like already done in an example, and  in some way included in the TFC download, maybe in separate archive or something.

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I'm being torn between both approaches :) I really enjoy old deers, they are so cute that I could catch one just to keep in a zoo. Their teleport-running made them a more interesting game. Like they have a feature - ultra fast running. And their visual fragility suits their speed.

 

Bears - the new one looks more like a cartoon one, a good, kind bear. Or actually as polar bear: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polar_bear

The old one - as a brown bear (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brown_bear), a real bulky forest predator. Maybe make it bigger?

( Believe me, I "know" what I'm saying - in Russia bears walk in towns and hijack vodka from children, unless busy playing babalaika :-DDD Old russian joke about foreign people seeing our country :) ).

I would actually love to see both bears, one in forests and one in some polar region or snow or whatever :)

 

I'm not a designer inside so I can not understand difference without a texture. I can not compare old spotty deer with plain white new model. Same with bear. Maybe new models will look great with great textures. Pheasant and rooster textures are also great, and rooster model is pretty simple.

 

Same with fish - I can't see how it will look small and in the water. Now seems great.

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Sorry, it was a doublepost.

 

[An addition]: vanilla simplicity can actually suit some animals. Take sheeps or pigs - they are not much detailed irl too.

But animals with muscles, like deers or panthers - very complicated forms and expressive body and face.

 

Brown bears are not much detailed irl - a bulk, cloud of fat and fur, all muscles underneath, hidden.

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Sorry, it was a doublepost.[An addition]: vanilla simplicity can actually suit some animals. Take sheeps or pigs - they are not much detailed irl too.But animals with muscles, like deers or panthers - very complicated forms and expressive body and face.Brown bears are not much detailed irl - a bulk, cloud of fat and fur, all muscles underneath, hidden.

I designed the new bear model after a grizzly bear I saw at the zoo. I wanted to capture the lumber in the way it walks, the shape of the head and the way the front paws angle inwards. I guess I focused too much on all the aspects that make it a bear without balancing it against simplicity. The best model is one that says what it is so clearly in as few words (or boxes) as possible. Hopefully, I'll be able to design a new model which is unmistakably a bear in its basic form. Thanks for the support :)
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I designed the new bear model after a grizzly bear I saw at the zoo. I wanted to capture the lumber in the way it walks, the shape of the head and the way the front paws angle inwards. I guess I focused too much on all the aspects that make it a bear without balancing it against simplicity. The best model is one that says what it is so clearly in as few words (or boxes) as possible. Hopefully, I'll be able to design a new model which is unmistakably a bear in its basic form. Thanks for the support :)

 

You did a fine job with the deer, so I'm in no doubt you can do the same with the rest of the models (namely one, unless animal-that-can't-be-named counts as well, considering I havent heard about the latter for a good while now).

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Might I say, the head on the new bear model looks great, and I hope it can somehow be included in the reworked model of the bear. I think the new deer models also fits in nicely, so props on that. As well, I really enjoy the fish model, and hope it doesn't get changed to much. Just because the fish is composed of many small pieces doesn't mean those pieces(blocks) have to move independently of each other, does it? It seems like if just the tail/body swayed in the water, and the rest was for the most part stationary to each other it would look fine. Another thing, I'm assuming when everyone says things like "models should match vanilla models more closely", that doesn't mean vanilla models (like pigs and cows) aren't going to be reworked for TFC in the future?

Anyhow, keep up the great work!

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