Alright, I really dont know where else to ask this. I have looked over polycount forum and there isnt too much stuff so…yeah.
I really want to try to learn VFX for videogames, but I cant find any kind of documentation that will lead me to what to learn or do as a starter. Before I jump myself blindly over cascade and UDK just because im a kind of a huge ignorant in the matter, I want to know if anyone knows sites of tutorials (hopefully free for a starter) or where to start looking.
Atm I know a lot of modeling, texturing, UV, and Aftereffects, things that I have read are all handy when it comes to learn and do particles. I have used particle flow on 3DSMAX, and used particles on Blender too. I have seen videos where they use particleflow for some unclear purposes to me (making textures???),and then they always end up using cascade and UDK.
So thats my question, where do I start, how do I test stuff, etc, if anyone did the research before me.
I honestly feel like the Unreal Engine 4 is a better choice. UE4 has a lot of improvement over UDK, in in my opinion is way more powerful and easier to use than unity. On top of that Epic has tons of tutorials on how to get started using it. UE4 is used in a lot of AAA games, but has also been used in indie games. UE4 is only $20/month, and if you decide not to pay for the second month you still get to use UE4. Really cannot beat that.
i think a very good way is, to learn some 3D graphic basics:
there a some phrases you should google:
normalmaps (tangent space, object space, world space )
ambient occlusion, speculars pre-baked to the diffuse maps
maps in general
Particle effects (Billboards)
smoothingroups/sharp edges, (normals in general)
Shading (lots of different, aspects)
LOD (level of detail)
how skeletal animation works.
morfer / shapekey-animation
This List is only, what i came up spontanuisly. and there is a lot more stuff to learn,
but you need to know the tweaks and tricks to fake visuals in realtime.
Unity is a very good Start, especialy with its blendfile support, thats a quite nifty feature.
Unreal4 is a monster, very good preformance and awsome features. they do a really good job. i would recommend it.
Cryengine 3 is verry easy to use for artists but a nighmare for programmers.
Currently we are creating a huge total-conversion for skyrim. The Creationkit is very powerful and has its moments
But implementing custom objects, animations and the quest-implemention is a ungreateful job, so i wont recommend it for beginners.