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This is one of the first areas I created for GoW3. The murals at the top were concepted by Scott Seeto. All of this is built by me, but I reused the main columns and the far left portal (better visible in the second picture below) from the adjacent section that was built by Nate Stephens.
I built the Zeus portal in the middle using zBrush and made it all golden to fit the concept I got. I also created shaders for the window and all the wall sections, one of them looking like hammered metal. It's hard to see in this shot but it reflected pretty cool ingame
since everything had a different angle. This level went thru a lot of iterations because our engine and shaders was constantly changing. I redid the shaders multiple times here because we were still in RnD with the engine, but it ended up looking about the same in the end.

Olympus

This below is one of the first meshes I did in zBrush for GoW3. Back in 2007. I started out of a plane, carving out the details while eyeballing at the concept. It's not too detailed since it never got close to the camera, but it worked well for the purpose.
This is actually one example of how to prioritize the time in the schedule. You often need to add detail where it counts and move on to the next piece. It's good to get a habit of not getting stuck with one piece too long. This model took about a day in total.
Texture size for the final piece is 512x512 (color, normal and spec)

 

 

Timo Pihlajamäki