Heyo! So to explain the sudden onslaught of art…I been working on some stuff on the side and only just recently have I been able to show it. Just so happens, I finished a personal piece for a gallery show right around the same time :D.

Anywho, I did this about a month and a half ago or so. I got to work with Treehouse Brand Stores (now Geeknet) and they wanted me to do a “badass illustration of Power Armor from Fallout”. It was so much fun to do, and I think I found a fun technique for adding texture. I should also mention that the first 4 images are the final and close ups. After that is the WIP shots.

Thanks to Jeremy McHugh and Jon Schindehette for making this possible!

If you’re interested in BUYING one of these babies, go here.

Why love and Fallout have never mixed

“Fallout players have launched nukes, battled aliens, and saved the world multiple times over, but they’ve almost never fallen in love. That romantic reticence has its roots in Fallout’s tonal core: a deep cynicism—toward both human nature and, specifically, the family-focused idealism of the 1950s—that resists artificiality at every turn. Fallout is a series with little respect for the human animal and its romantic needs, and its signature disdain for sentiment has manifested itself in every installment since its debut in 1997.”
Affine Polynomials in Skyrim

I’ve been slacking in collating examples of maths i.r.l.

But sometimes it’s easy.

Skyrim, like any Dungeons & Dragons system, has to model certain aspects of reality.

  • how likely you are to encounter a random group of bandits on the road

  • what are the relevant attributes of a person?

    Somewhere the computer stores some tuple that represents everything it knows about your character.
  • whether someone likes your character or not

    «let me see here … Nice to meet you, Fry.»
  • how telepathy works. (What happens if you try to read a horse’s mind?)

  • how battles work (will there be hit points? will there be THAC0?)

  • how learning, or training works.

The result of the models must be balanced, believable, and fun.

After dragooning your GPU into computing a couple billion triangles per second on the graphics side, the designers of Skyrim decided to go easy on the maths they use to model learning of skills like

  • smithing
  • lockpicking
  • speechcraft
  • two-handed weapons

. They use a different binomial for each skill.

determines how hard it is to get from “level 5 → level 6” versus from “level 78 → level 79”.

In addition to choosing a paradigm (existence of “levels of alchemy” and “experience points in alchemy”) and calibrating attainment grades, the game designers had to decide how much XP to reward per action.

Here again a binomial per skill, eg smithing:

  • 25 + (3 ∗ item value0.65) base XP for constructing an item.
  • 25 + (8 ∗ item value delta0.6) base XP for improving an item.

Relating this to maths terminology,

  • the 25 would be the affine b from y=mx+b, allowing them to put a floor on each smithing experience;
  • “Learning” is modelled by repeating a map.
  • 3 ∗ 0.65, the derivative around item value=1, would be the first m in a sequence of declining b+m+m+m+m+m+m+…’s.
  • Three parameters; that’s almost enough to fit an elephant! And yet the designers made a hit game.
  • 0.65 < 1 as an exponent makes learning concave in splendiferousness of the item crafted; repetition is more important than making one spectacular thing.

Fallout 4.
Synths, Power Armor and A Bridge Over Troubled Water.

New concept art from Fallout 4, released by Bethesda Softworks to promote “The Art of Fallout 4″ Artbook, out in december.

“Our artists created 2x the game assets for Fallout 4 than Skyrim, get a taste in our art book.” -from the BethesdaSoftworks bethesda​ on twitter.