16 september 2019 - 22 september 2019

About my goal

This week I wanted to make more tools so that I'd be more familiar with Houdini and its workflow. I always wanted to make a pier tool in whatever program I already worked with. In my opinion, Houdini is the perfect program to make this with. But before I made that tool, I followed a specific tutorial about procedurally modeling a guard tower. 

Here is the link for the turorial: https://www.sidefx.com/learn/collections/guard-tower/

Guard tower

The Guard Tower project shows beginning Houdini users how to construct game ready units using Houdini. The learning series shows the process of building up the parts and pieces of the props using only Houdini to procedurally create each asset. Throughout this process you'll be introduced to the techniques of high-res modeling and baking using the toolset that Houdini provides.

My part in this tutorial

I finished about 60% of the tutorial (ground, wall & sandbags). Why stop there? Time is of the essence and I made the most important assets/tools (low-res & hi-res modeling) and learned a lot by doing it. For the other assets I checked out the workflow so that I understood how it was done. I could finish the prop by making materials in substance designer, but that was not one of my goals at the time. With my newly acquired knowledge in hand, it was time to make the pier tool I'd always wanted.

The pier tool

Before making a tool it's important to write down how your tool works. Extra sketches could be a useful guideline and give you something visual to start thinking from. If you just start building a tool without any prior research or concept in mind, it will be a lot harder and you might lose a lot of time and encounter problems you didn't think of before. The key is collecting enough reference/research so that you have an understanding of what's happening. The more you do this, the more insight you will have when working on a project like this.

To see how this tool works, click on the following image: