Ricochet – Coming Soon

Ricochet Coming Soon

I thought I would update you all on what I have been working on.

Currently I am putting together an alpha test version of a side scrolling shooter named Ricochet, created in Unity 3D.

Below are some work in progress screenshots of the game to wet your appitite.

Keep an eye out on the Andrew Solesbury website for more info and free downloads as the project progresses.

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New Website Design


This week (Jan 30th 2012) came with a moment of inspiration on how to better design my website.

Driven by the need to move my site to another server (paid for so it’s now pop-up advert free) I totally redesigned my website.

The new site is now also designed to ‘reform’ to fit perfectly on smart phones, and IPod’s/IPad’s/Tablets.

Take a look at www.andrewsolesbury.co.uk (if you are not already here!!!)


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AS Logo Design

This is my latest Logo design, based on the idea of having plastic “buttons” and then dropping several in a photo booth.
It was modeled and rendered in 3DS Max 2008, and then Photoshop CS3 was used to create the depth of field effect.

Keep an eye out for the making of here soon!
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Some easy, quick, and effective tips for speeding up renders in 3DS Max

As a frequent user of 3DS Max, and someone who is still learning all of it many complex menu’s and options, I am often looking for tips, tricks, and tutorials. One such tip that I looked for online many times when I started with 3DS Max, was how to easily speed up my render times. However, I could never find anything that easily and quickly affected it. I have therefore decided to post my simple guide to speeding up your renders. Many of these things I am yet to fully understand in depth, and all will only work on certain scene’s and systems, but here they are nonetheless. I do hope they help you!

1- Switch off “Rendered Frame Window”

This is the easiest, and quickest of all. Switching off the Rendered Frame Window saves on RAM, and therefore allows the renderer to use more RAM.

PS. Remember to save the file before rendering, as you will not see anything once finished, although you can click on the rendered frame window after rendering to bring up the image (I think this may only work in newer versions of Max)

2-Switch on “Multithreading” if you have a Dual or Quad core processor and more than 3GB of RAM.

This allows Max full access to all available cores in your processors, and therefore speeds up rendering.

note: this is only available on 3DS Max 2010 and above.

3- Switch on “Use Placeholder Objects” and “Use Mental Ray Map Manager” if you have lots of instances in your scene.

This will speed up the time it takes to translate the scene, and then speed up the rendering as it controls instances much more efficiently.

4- Use “Geometry Cache” in 3DS Max 2010 and later, especially for architectural flythrough’s/stills.

This stores your geometry in a Cache which Max can use over and over. This is especially useful if you are rendering several frames (animations) or several different cameras.

5- Switch to “BSP2″ on the “Ray Tracing” panel if you have a fast computer.

BSP or Binary Space Partitioning is a system that Max, and other 3D packages use to build the scene within its system. BSP2 is a newer, more efficient version of BSP which is significantly quicker at rendering large scene.

note: BSP2 requires a fast computer, with lots of RAM, as it stores the data in much larger detail than BSP.

I hope this helps you in your endeavours, and I will update this when I understand more. I apologise for those tips that don’t have Images, as I do not have 2010 on my home PC, however, you should find them within the various rendering tabs.

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Why does it feel like cheating when I use a template/wizard?

As a designer of various disciplines, I often design websites/blogs/profiles etc. Often, these are on sites which have a full customization. So why is it, when I see that edit HTML button, that I feel obliged to use it?

This blog is one such example of what I want to talk about. As I only had just half an hour of editing and designing to get this blog up and running, and a lack of inspiration in photoshop, I decided to cheat, and simply edit an existing template. Now I feel like some sort of design whore, who has sold out, and left behind his design degree and web knowledge.

I understand the ease of use of these templates, and appreciate the effort the original designer went to, as i am sure it took him/her a lot of work to produce and a keen knowledge of php and advanced html techniques. I guess, as such, I should celebrate the fact that someone is prepared to do this for free. However, I can’t help but worry that I do not actual know the name of the person who did this, nor shall I ever.

This leads me back to my original worry; I am now abusing someone’s work, and selling it as my own, without any acknowledgement to the original designer. So here it is; thank you to the designer of my original template, whoever you may be!

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