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An interview with C132's lead modeller
hl2c_articles - Its been a while since i last conducted an interview, well im back with avengance this time interviewing C132s Lead Modeller Snozzle | Posted by Psycho_byte on Sep 17th 03 06:48 AM
Hl2central had the opportunity to interview Citizen-132's lead modeller, following a public design chat in their channel. Whilst we've interviewed citizen-132 before this one focus' more on the modelling aspect of the mod.

Psycho_byte: Could you briefly describe your roll with citizen-132 for us?

Snozzle: I'm a weapon modeller for Citizen-132, creating both Player view models, and world view models. Recently i have also been made the Head of the

modelling department in C132

Psycho_byte: What lead you to explore the path of modelling as apposed to mapping or coding for example?

Snozzle: I first helped out in mod teams about a year after halflife was released as a person who couldnt really do that much, but was eager to help. (all

these mods eventualy fell flat on their noses) I looked at all the areas that were needed in a mod, and just chose one i thought sounded the more enjoyable

for me. I started to learn 3d modelling to see how i enjoyed it, and it just took over. I just think modelling feels more solid than

Psycho_byte: As a modeller for c132, where do you see the ideal equilibrium between quality and low-poly count?

Snozzle: Originally for Half-life, Modelling guns that had a lot of detail and looked good was pritty tricky with the engine, due to having to keep the

polycount down. I always found myself sacraficing some quality, for the low polycount. Some people managed to do everything they wanted within the polygon

quota, but i just couldnt always find it possible.Now with Halflife 2 on the horizon And obviously the development of people's computers, polycounts can go

up, and so can model quality. I think the quality should be put before polycount, However polycounts should always be a high priority, and you can still

achieve detail whatever the polycount.

Psycho_byte: In terms of a players body, are there areas in specific you believe need greater focus and why?

Snozzle: I think the detail of player models has greatly improved, especialy with half-life 2. The crunch skin and muscle effects avaliable in hl2 are going

to add a whole new zone of detail into the game. Things are still along way to go, but games developers are getting there. Head's are getting far more

detailed, with lip syncing and realistic hair effects, but things still dont quite look as they do in the real world. It's hard to put a finger on whats

wrong. Facial expressions havent been used much, but again, hl2 is breaking the ground with this too.

Psycho_byte: With an ongoing debate as to the best modelling program, which application do the modellers of c132 or yourself feel most


Snozzle: Theres quite a big variation of modelling programs used by c132, which in theory does not help the modelling process that well. I think most of us

are able to model in 3d studio, yet still one of our members tends to create a model in milkshape, one of the most primative programs (yet still powerful

enough to be a good modeller) before porting it over to max. Some of our modellers also know this new softimage program, although i have not had a chance to

learn it yet. We havent really had a compatability problem, even though we are using different formats. I think modellers work best in their chosen program,

and its all down to taste.

Psycho_byte: With your mods concept artist undoubtably one of the best in the community, do you feel there is alot of pressure on you to

follow through?

Snozzle: Yeah, i think there probably is. I am in awe of some of the concept art produced by our artist and feel that it is really hard to live up to.

Although it may seem strange, but i am probably the worst artist on paper, not being able to draw the simplest of things to any great effect.However i am

able to make *ok* models. Although i am not a character modeller, so am not using the conceptual art as much as our other modeller is, i still think the art

raises the proffesionalism of the mod to a whole new level.

Psycho_byte: Are there any models or type of models you favour doing most?

Snozzle: I obivously favour player view models far more highly than world models, simple because of the level of detail. Model wise, i think i prefer melee

weapons. They can be really simple to model, but this is where the challenge comes in, as sometimes the simplest of models can turn out looking too simple.If

that makes any sense ¬_¬

Psycho_byte: Ignoring your favourite type of model, which do you feel your performance exceedes most in?

Snozzle: I think probably rifles or again melee weapons. I havent modelled a handgun for a while, but my last attempt was apalling. I think it was because i

tried to make the model to simple. Rifles also often have the most detail, and being able to add lots of detail to a gun enhances it (as long as you have the

polygons to do it)

Psycho_byte: As a modeller it is vital you keep to a strict control chain, do you feel you get along with your collegues and meet these targets to your full potential?

Snozzle: I think we work very well as a team in c132. There are always going to be slight communication breakdowns, when you interpretate something wrong,

but things normally go fine. Deadlines and targets are always important to make, and sometimes the tighter they are, the better the final product may be.

This may not always be the case, and goes against logic, being pushed can produce the best results. But then again, being given time to do something without

rushing is important. You just have to keep a good balance of the two.

Psycho_byte: Prior to citizen-132 what other experience in the modeling field have you had?

Snozzle: I've modelled for other mods, which sadly like so many other mods go down the plug hole. One such was 007 halflife, which were making a mod on the

film moonraker (not to be confused with the team who made the goldeneye mod). There have been many more, but all fall into insignificance as soon as they

fade away, except for the experienced i gained through modelling for them. Citizen-132 is the most promising by far, and i have no doubts at all about its


Psycho_byte: In your opinion what would be the best piece of work you've produced thus far?

Snozzle: I lack self confidence in my modelling abilities, which is probably not a good thing ;). I think since i started modelling with max about 4 months

ago, my modelling ability has steadily picked up. I think each model i make gets slightly better, so i'd have to probably say it was the famas, which was

also my first scene based rendering attempt.

Psycho_byte: As one of the teams main modeller you have undoubtably been briefed on some of the weapons to be produced, are you able to give us a hint as to

what non-standard melee weapons will be available(i.e not knife)?

Snozzle: I wont give too much away, but we have decided to remove the skipole, and replace it with a slightly more adventurous melee weapon. Ice picks ;).

You may even get to wield 2 icepicks at a time, but only if you've been a good boy/girl this year ;)

Psycho_byte: You mention earlier you are the leader of the modelling, is your department currently in search of more members, if so how should someone go

about applying?

Snozzle: The modelling department is currently in need of new faces . To fill this post you can send me an email , or pop into

#citizen-132 on gamesnet. We are also looking for 2 other members to join the ranks. An animator and a skinner, to ...... animate and skin ;) These people

may also apply through me at the previously mentioned email address.

Psycho_byte: I would like to thankyou on behalf of hl2central for taking the time to participate in this interview, we wish you and your collegues the best

of luck in the future.

Snozzle: Thanks Psycho_byte :)

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