K-ON! Clubroom – Donuts!

Hey everyone, it’s donut time!

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But only if you select Jun as your character. My goal is to have at least one special item for each character before the first release, and even more in the final version.

What kind of secrets do you expect to find with each character?

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The cassette player has been finished since my last post. This is probably the most accurate model in the scene so far, thanks to all the reference images I had.

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Interacting with the cassette player will play any files you’ve put in the special “Cassette” folder. The needle on the top right even tracks the level of the music!

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Every side of the player has the same attention to detail, but the top is especially cool thanks to all the fancy controls. Every switch, jack, button, dial and slider is labelled accurately. Naturally, this is a SOWY brand player, just like the show.

 

If there’s not a donut constellation already, I’m going to find it. See you soon.

K-ON! Clubroom – Cassette Player!

Phew! It’s been a while since I last posted. I picked up a cold from PAX and haven’t been feeling well since then. Even so, I’ve made some progress on the clubroom and still intend to release a beta version before the end of the year.

Let’s look at the features that have been added recently. First up: realistic refraction.

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I cannot take full credit for this effect; my brother did most of the programming, I only had the idea.

Most game engines like Unity can’t do true refraction, since it requires ray tracing. If you’ve seen refraction in games before, it’s usually an approximation that works well enough for effects like water ripples and frosted glass, but cannot accomplish what you see in the screenshot above.

To achieve the effect, every side of the tank is equipped with its own virtual camera, which projects an image of what it sees onto the water surface. The virtual camera is deflected from the player’s viewpoint according to the refractive index and the distance from the tank.

Since adding more cameras reduces performance, I have decided not to enable this effect in VR (since it would require twice the number of cameras).

Speaking of performance, the soft shadows under objects now use decal textures rather than projectors, which is a huge improvement.

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I have also been hard at work modelling the cassette player, which you can see above.

After a lot of research, I discovered that the player was based on a Sony CF-1980Ⅱ. You can see a photo of the real-life player here. I actually found a lot of great reference photos by browsing Japanese auction sites, including close-ups of the control panel.

As of today, the model is 99% complete, and I’ll be starting the textures soon. The cassette player is the last major 3D model that will be added before I release the beta.

 

Thanks for sticking around like Sticky the stick insect after getting stuck on a sticky bun.

K-ON! Clubroom – Cake!

First of all, a big hello to everyone from /r/k_on! Thank you for taking an interest in this project.

Today I was planning to start modelling the cassette player, but although there are some great reference images from the show, I’d like to get some real-world images as well.

Instead, I decided to finally model the centrepiece of the K-ON! clubroom: the cake.

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It’s a delicious strawberry shortcake, possibly the most memorable type of cake in the show.

I wouldn’t consider this finished yet: I plan to add cherries and extra decorations to make it even better (not to mention some plates and forks to eat with). Let’s hope Yui can survive until then.

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The cake uses simulated subsurface scattering to appear even more realistic (and mouth-watering). Working on this model seriously made me hungry.

 

Until next time, I’ll be paying a visit to the cake constellation (is there such a thing?).

K-ON! Clubroom – Model Spotlight #3

Everybody say hello to Ton-chan:

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I don’t have much experience with organic shapes, so Ton-chan was a little more difficult for me to make than the other models. Luckily, Ton is quite a small turtle, so I didn’t need to make him extremely detailed. He is made up of several different parts:ton-spotlight-1

  • Head & Body
  • Eyes
  • Shell
  • Front Flippers
  • Back Flippers

Ton’s flippers are not fixed relative to his body, this allows them to waggle up and down, as if he is swimming.

Right now, Ton’s behaviour isn’t very realistic; he simply floats up and down in the one spot. The poor guy is doing his best, perhaps he’s just tired! In a future version of the application, I’d like to have him swim around the tank more actively.

 

Take care of your pets, and I’ll see you on the other side of the constellation Lyra.

K-ON! Clubroom – Seasons!

The seasonal system has been massively improved, along with the 2D/3D skybox visible outside the window. There are now a total of four “seasons” that the application can choose between:

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Each season has dramatically different lighting and a custom 2D skybox, complete with hand-painted clouds. The colours of each skybox are based on references from the anime.

There are also unique sound and visual effects to complete the mood, such as heat haze/cicadas in Summer and chirping crickets at night.

I will be adding a Winter season as well, but first I need to close the windows to keep in the heat. It’s only sensible.

k-on-72-city-lightsDuring the rainy season and at night, you can see city lights glowing in the distance. Even the Moon makes an appearance during the evening.k-on-73-moonlightEvery season also sees the Sun in a different position in the sky, as determined by an accurate simulation of the Earth’s orbit. All the calculations are set for the year 2009 in Toyosato. I even checked the phase of the Moon.

 

See you next time, under the light of a waxing crescent.

K-ON! Clubroom – Model Spotlight #2

It’s been a little while since the last update. Unfortunately I was delayed because of a software issue. Anyway, today we’re looking at the school desk model:

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desk-spotlight-1This desk has quite an unusual design. The sides of the desk were created first as 2D shapes, and then extruded to the correct thickness in 3D.

As you can see in the image to the right, the desks also have an interior where the students can put their books.

Overall, this model is quite simple. Even so, their unique look really adds a lot of personality to the room.

In VR, the desks actually feel quite small, but then you have to remember that they’re designed for high school students!

This model is also special because I’ve had it 3D printed! I own the entire collection of K-ON! figma figures (because of course I do), and I wanted to give them some matching props. Here’s Nodoka-chan hanging out with the first print:

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If you’re interested, you can purchase your own 3D printed Sakuragaoka desk from my Shapeways store. If you have any suggestions for other 3D printed K-ON! models you’d like to see, just leave a message.

 

Next time I’ll be posting another progress report. Let’s beat Elon to Mars, shall we?