Digitally recreating some of the world’s most stunning cars
04 November 2017
When French gaming studio Eden Games decided to launch its first-ever mobile racing game the developers were determined to make it as elegant and realistic as possible.
In October 2016, after three years of meticulous planning and obsessive attention-to-detail, Gear.Club was born.
Co-founder & CEO of Eden Games David Nadal believes the success of any racing game depends first and foremost on its cars. In today’s sophisticated market, gamers expect perfection and it’s this belief that drives Nadal and his team to painstakingly recreate each and every element of the cars featured in the game.
“We individually simulate every mechanical element relevant to how a car behaves,” says Nadal. “Fidelity is key and we are proud that our game engine can reproduce subtle nuances that only a true car fan will be able to feel.”
These subtle nuances Nadal talks of are generated using the developers’ own in-house simulator to recreate the physics of the car. CAD data is provided by the manufacturers of the cars included in the game. The data includes measurements for torque, gear ratios, the size of wheels, the length between the axles; the list goes on. Anything that could modify the physics of the car in any way must be included to give an experience that’s a realistic as possible.
Here, Nadal explains how the gaming specialist creates the exquisite digital replicas of some of the world’s most beautifully crafted cars, using the Pagani Huayra Roadster as an example.
Step one – modelling
The first step in developing any car is to obtain as much data from the car manufacturer as possible. This includes imagery, video content, vehicle dimensions, and CAD files, which are used to create 2D and 3D designs.
The first stage in development, once all the data has been received from the car manufacturer, is the car modelling. This consists of placing and moving around polygons and vertices until the exact shape of the car is obtained. One crucial point to be mindful of is that the number of polygons used for each car is limited by the computing power of the device it will be run on; past a certain number of polygons, the car looks better, but the game may slow down as the CPU and RAM suffer as a result.
Step two – ambient occlusion calculus
The ambient occlusion calculus is an important phase. This is essentially the shadow that appears between two objects when they are close to touching each other. The shadow must be exact to give the illusion that the car is touching the road in the game.
Step three – texture and shading
Once the shape and positioning of the car is approved, the next stage is to create definition by replicating the raw materials used in the composition of the car. Using different textures and shading, artists apply patterns and logos and focus on the minute detailing such as the lights or the carbon finishing so synonymous with the Pagani brand.
Step four – interior
Arguably, the most difficult part to replicate of any car is the engine and interior. Supercar engines are especially difficult to replicate as the brands seem very keen to expose the intricate engine designs.
When dealing with a bespoke supercar manufacturer like Pagani, every detail matters including each stitch in the exquisite leather upholstery.
Step five – finishing touches
At last, the final car is integrated into the game, where it will benefit from a few last touches of polishing. For example, when Pagani decided at the last minute that the rims on the Huayra Roadster would be gold on one side and silver on the other, we obliged to recreate the exact same in the game. These final refinements ensure that the car looks as faithful to the original car as possible.
Gear.Club is available to download now on the App Store and Google Play.
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