Traveller High Society

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Thursday, May 29, 2014

Rendering Traveller RPG Images Using Vue Infinite

I used a ground plane for this shot so I could get some atmosphere added to the edge of the planet. The haze hides the water in the distance. So many ways to make wave effects in Vue. Made decision-making harder.

The main thing was getting the right angle shot of the Broadsword. I didn't want the camera too high, but still higher slightly than the model. A point light was added to get the lensflare to show more. It may be too bright, because the legs are almost white.

A happy accident here. The Sun found itself inside the planet. Technically, Vue (version 9.5) does not use a physical Sun object. It is just a lighting effect for atmospheres. Anyway, I was trying to get the Sun to show behind the planet. But I had made the planet object too big. Thousands of miles wide instead of my usual thousands of feet wide. Vue's Sun "object" cannot be placed that far away from the camera, even though it let's you. The atmosphere renderer proxy-moves it closer to the camera, so it ended up super-heating my world from the inside. The result was, the water became land and the land became lava. The poor lighting conditions then proceeded to light up only the sky, so ship textures came out black (thus the stylized look).

This mash-up happened more likely because I have a ground plane intersecting with a planet sphere. It's all true, the glowing planet is just some spheres inside of spheres with no real atmosphere.

For this shot, I added alien plant life. Then moved the Sun from behind the sphere object (aka the planet). The ships are just copies I placed in various spots. I placed some ships above a couple of buildings (maybe they are landing or taking off). That's how far away and huge those buildings are.

When building a scene to render, I almost always keep everything to scale. The planet is not to scale of course. It is just for looks, and is made small to give the illusion that it is super huge.

Here I moved the Sun out of the frame and cleared out the grass from under the main ship.

Not much to say here. I used my Mars model this time. No atmosphere used at all. This is how images looked when printed in Starlog magazine in the '70s.

Space: 1999 used such shots, and got away with it all the time on television.

Anyone that knows sci-fi movie history will recognize where this shot comes from.

By the way, CameraBag 2.0 was used for all the postwork on these renders. It's great for removing most of the CG look from them.