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  • Writer's pictureKatie Lofts

Games Proposal - Stray - Week 2

Updated: Apr 28

Week 2 Commencing 3/4/2023

This week I started off by putting in the walls, floor, and ceiling of my room into Substance Painter and texturing them.

I decided to do this before finishing the rest of the models because I felt that I needed to figure out the textures of the walls first to be able to then think about the textures of the rest of the models so that I knew everything would look good together.

I also wanted to do the walls so early on because I was getting a bit nervous thinking about how I will eventually end up doing them. At first, I thought to do a tilable texture using Photoshop, but I felt like that approach would not look as good even though it would end up saving time.

I weighed out my options and decided it would be better to just texture it all individually in Substance Painter to ensure it looked the best it could even if it ended up taking more time. Surprisingly, it took a lot less time than I imagined.

Here, I replaced my block out in UE5 with the one I did in Maya, now fully UV'd and of course textured. I placed in some lights to help me envision what the final product would look like, and also to see if I needed to adjust any settings in Painter, like the height or roughness of the textures.

I did not need to go back and tweak anything because I was very happy with how the lighting interacted with these textures, such as the blue light in the left corner shining on the wood floor.


I got some feedback from my lecturer for this module and she made a quick sketch for me to demonstrate her ideas of things to add, such as having a space of multiple plant pots, all of differing sizes to add visual interest.

She also recommended adding various other clutter, like bookshelves.


Now, I just went back to my scene in Maya and continued on modelling things both from my original concept but also from the various references I compiled in my last blog post.

I also added the things recommended by my lecturer, like the series of plant pots towards the back of the room in front of the window, and bookshelves.

Now, with everything UV'd and ready to texture, I attempted to separate each model into certain groups, such as; large props, medium props, small props, etc.

Each colour means that this model is on the same UV map / texture map as the other objects that have the same colour. This way, I was able to keep optimised but also texture things in chunks which made more sense to me as well.

For more important objects, such as the large canvas, I decided to give them their own texture set or allow them to share one with only one or two more objects. For example, the big painting on the wall has its own UV set so that I could make sure I could put a good quality painting on it. The air conditioning unit/vent only shares a map with the stool, as I wanted to give more interest to each of these textures as well.

I felt like this was a more optimal way to do things because I did not feel like it would make sense for each individual object to have its own texture, as that would take far too long too, but also take up a lot of space and memory put into UE5. This is something I learned during my internship last summer too.

I exported all of these together like how you can see above, and this is the file that I put into Substance Painter to texture. However, I also saved individual FBX's of the individual models in 0,0,0 with the correct pivot. This would be the models that I in fact import into Unreal, so that I can place them wherever I want without issues. With each model being saved like this too, it made sure that I was free to duplicate any meshes I wanted in Unreal and place them freely, not forcing myself to be strict with the layout I had here in Maya.

I also tried to group up the objects by assets that were of similar nature or material, such as all the paintings/papers going on one map, all rugs together on one map, all lights together on one map, etc.

This was so that I could easily work on one master smart material for them in Substance Painter without waiting to switch between the maps.

When texturing, I made sure to always reference the style of Stray. I used PureRef and the Pinterest board I made to keep track of all my references, as seen above.

Also, from the Stray wiki, I was able to find pages on the graffiti and posters used in game, with the textures that they used uploaded on here too. I downloaded these and edited them in Photoshop to get rid of any backgrounds they had and imported them into Substance Painter as textures or alphas.

I used them on my paper notes and also on some of my paintings, though I did not use them all.

I was very happy to find these because I felt like it would really tie in the atmosphere of my scene, given that these textures are already used in Stray and portray the original language used in the game. Though, I will make sure to give proper credit and specify these are not in fact made by me.


Once I had finished my texturing in Painter, I put everything into my Unreal project to see how it looked.

Overall, I was really pleased with how it had all turned out, given that working within this style was way out of my comfort zone too.

I still need to fix some things like the windows, which currently do not have any glass panes or windowframes, but other than that I just now have to work within Unreal to finish the scene - set up cameras, lighting, any particles, and post processing effects.

I also gave some of the textures an emissive texture too - like the computer monitor, and the lights.

For the main painting on the canvas, I also just imported a sketch I had done perhaps a year ago but didn't use for anything into Painter and added some quick weathering around the edges to imply that the painting was still a work in progress.

Also, here are all the folders I ended up with for the exported textures from Substance Painter and how I sorted them.


Schedule Spreadsheet update

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