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Building Interactive Worlds in 3D
Virtual Sets and Pre-visualization for Games, Film and the Web


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Word Power Books

Building Interactive Worlds in 3D
Virtual Sets and Pre-visualization for Games, Film and the Web

by Jean-Marc Gauthier (Author)



ISBN: 9780240806228


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Details the steps required to build simulations and interactions, utilize virtual cameras, virtual actors, and real-time physics including gravity, collision and topography. This work helps to create interactive, 3D sets - virtual buildings, terrains, as well as other virtual prototypes for games and film/video pre-visualization.

In Building Interactive Worlds in 3D readers will find turnkey tutorials that detail all the steps required to build simulations and interactions, utilize virtual cameras, virtual actors (with self-determined behaviors), and real-time physics including gravity, collision, and topography. With the free software demos included, 3D artists and developers can learn to build a fully functioning prototype. The book is dynamic enough to give both those with a programming background as well as those who are just getting their feet wet challenging and engaging tutorials in virtual set design, using Virtools. Other software discussed is: Lightwave, and Maya. The book is constructed so that, depending on your project and design needs, you can read the text or interviews independently and/or use the book as reference for individual tutorials on a project-by-project basis. Each tutorial is followed by a short interview with a 3D graphics professional in order to provide insight and additional advice on particular interactive 3D techniques-from user, designer, artist, and producer perspectives.


ISBN 240806220
ISBN13 9780240806228
Publisher Focal Press
Format Paperback
Publication date 20/04/2005
Pages 448
Weight (grammes) 1036
Published in United Kingdom
Height (mm) 246
Width (mm) 189

Chapter 1 - A short history of computer simulations History of interactive 3D, from early flight simulaters during World War 2 to state of the art low cost virtual sets.
- Inverview: Ken Perlin, Director of CAT/NYU, special effects supervisor for Tron, Disney.
Cahpter 2 3D basic kit
- Solutions to practical and conceptual problems
- Modeling and texturing for interactive 3D
- Alpha channels and transparencies
- Photorealistic real-time 3D rendering on a PC or on a Mac
- Project:designing a skybox
- Interview: Benjy Bernhard about creating virtual sets for the AMNH's Planetarium
Chapter 3 Adding interactivity
- Director
- Virtools
- Reusable behaviors
- Scripting interactions
- Simulating natural laws or physics in a virtual set
- Controlling interactions with input devices: dragging 3D objects
- Project: 3D artist, Tamiko Thiel, about museum installations
Chapter 4 Animation basics
- Keyframed animation: simple animation in Maya and Lightwave
- Morphing
- Animated textures
- Exporting animated 3D models
- Character animation: bones and biped
- Exporting animate dcharacters
- Scripted animation in Lingo
- Advanced interactive animation
- Capturing real-time motion
- Project: Interactive showcase for virtual actors
- Interview: dancer-animator, Liza Herlinger-Thompson, Troika Ranch, about character animation
Chapter 5 Interactive Lighting
- Natural lighting
- Indoor lighting
- Distant light
- Spot light
- Point light
- Building a virtual light studio: a virtual set for TV
- Adding interactivity
- Testing the virtual light studio on a movie set
- Advanced interactive lighting: particle animation, special effects and volumetrics
- Project: Interactive lighting of a character isnide a virtual set
- Interview: interactive 3D artist, Florent Aziosmanoff about lighting for virtual sets
Chapter 6 Virtual Cameras
- Virtual cameras adapted from Hitchkok and Stanley Kubrick's movies
- Steadycams
- Movie previsualization
- Parent-child scripting and targets
- Controlling virtual cameras
- Advanced interactivity for virtual cameras: artificial intelligence, portals
- Tutorial: 3D interactive adaptation from a scene from "Night Hawks" from E. Hopper
- Interview: director of photography, Kaminski, AI, Minority Report, discusses using virtual sets for movies
Chapter 7 3D sound
- Introduction to immersive experiences
- Synchronization of display and sound
- Spatialized sound
- Controlling several sound streams
- Real-time 3D sound
- Sound envelopes
- Tutorial: sound mixer
- Interview: 3D Sound inventor and engineer, Bo Gehring, discusses spatialized sound for virtual sets
Chapter 8 User interface and input devices
- Linear and non-linear story telling
- User testing
- Testing playback performance
- Building input devices: serial inputs
- Midi inputs
- Interactive phones
- PDAs
- Project: Designing a new interactive camera: the "cocktail camera"
- Interview: Interactive designer, Bill Tomlinson, Synthetic Character Group, MIT MediaLab about input devices for virtual sets
Chapter 9 Following a terrain with a remote controlled car
- Modeling and texturing a terain
- Modeling the car and obstacles
- Collision against the terrain
- Collision between a character and walls and other collisions
- Adding physics: springs
- Other methods: ray calculations
- Project: an online 3D game
- Interview: game designer, Sokal, creator of Syberiade, about virtual sets for game design
Chapter 10 Communication environments
- Communication from and to the virtual set
- Introduction to multiplayer 3D games
- Serial communication
- Web communication
- Interactive phone communication
- Example of online multiplayer 3D game
- Project: a robot talks to a virtual set
- Interview: bio-robotic specialist Robert Full, Director of the Polypedal Lab, Bugs Life, Disney and Pixar, about using virtual sets to stimulate robots inspired by insects.
Chapter 11 Advanced interactive 3D characters
- Advanced character animation: blending motions
- Cloning motions
- Crowd control
- Path finding and terrain analysis
- Project: characters from a movie set are controlled by cellular phones
- Interview: virtual sets designer, Colin Green, from Pixel Liberation Front, The Matrix, Panic Room, discusses movie previsualization for virtual sets
Chapter 12 Artificial intelligence and gameplay for virtual sets
- Introduction to AI
- Decision making and self-determination
- Managing crowd in an open space
- Integrating AI in a game with AI
- Project: virtual agora in the antique city of Aphrodisias
- Interview: 3D interavtive designer, Zach Rosen, about using AI inside virtual sets
Chapter 13 Multi-user server and database
- Database administration
- Connection to database
- Saving and loading
- Managing characters in multi-player environment
- Chat in 3D world
- Project: Multi player virtual movie set
- Interview: CEO of SIA-TV, Adrian Simonovitch, about database driven virtual sets for interactive TV games