This task required me to create a 3D environment in 3DS Max and then apply different lighting and ambient sound to it in Unreal engine to create a horror atmosphere. This task links to other tasks I have done, including the task discussing techniques developers use to create mood and atmosphere in digital environments, and the virtual gallery I created as I had to create different atmospheres in the rooms.
Making the environment
The first step in this task was to create a box in 3DS Max that would become the environment. Then I created a second box and set the height at 192cm, length at 84cm, and the width at 84cm so that the box would represent the size of the character in the Unreal engine so that I could scale the environment so that the character could walk through it.
Once I had created the environment in 3DS Max I exported it by selecting it and going to file, then export selected. Then I imported it into Unreal engine by dragging in the file.
Once I had the environment in Unreal I started adding lights to it. To make it a horror atmosphere I decreased the brightness of the lights by selecting them and setting the Light map Resolution to -512. I also set the colours of the lights to darker colours so they did not illuminate the environment much to add to the horror mood I wanted to create. I did this by selecting the lights and changing the colour in their settings. I changed the colour of the lights to blue, orange, and purple.
When I had the lights how I wanted them I created a box trigger in one of the rooms and set up a piece of ambient music to play when the character entered the box trigger. I did this by selecting box trigger and scaling it to the size I wanted in the room. Then I selected the box trigger and went to Blueprints and then Open Level Blueprint. From here I set it so that the ambient music would play as soon as the character entered the box trigger and would continue playing until the track finished, then start again when the character entered the box trigger again. This added to the horror atmosphere as the ambient music was eerie.
I think the lights and ambient music did work to create a horror atmosphere as it was quite a dark environment and the music added to the mood, however I think the lights could have worked better if I chose different colours as the orange light I had didn’t darken the environment as much as the others and so it created a lighter area of the environment that didn’t fit well in the horror atmosphere I was trying to create.