So, I have been playing with a new freeware tool called MagicaVoxel, which allows you to build voxel-based models, which you can then import into your projects for free.
MagicaVoxel: Playing with blocks was never this fun.
I decided to do a bit of toying around and create a building. I ended up going for a futuristic base in the middle of the ocean:
I thought it came out rather nice, truth be told, for a first try. Using this program is addictive, I have to tell you, and soon you will find yourself carried away by the sheer joy of building. Soon, I decided I wanted to try my hand at something a little more challenging, like a beach location. Something with a little bit of organic shapes. So, I ended up with:
You know, it’s still a pretty passable attempt. It certainly wouldn’t look too out of place in the more stylized type of games. I am definitely getting into the groove of things, and I am thinking I’d like to try my hand at a more organic-looking tree. I can do that, right? It’ll take a little bit more work ,but surely ’tis doable! So there I go:
I’m definitely getting the hang of things here. Detailing the organic treetops requires a lot of manual passes, though, so I can see why some people would go for the more stylized treetops. Speaking of stylized trees, I decided I’d try to do one, my way, and so I ended up with this voxel kitty stuck on top of a stylized autumn voxel tree:
And that’s when I discovered that MagicaVoxel lets you export your creations in both isometric sprites and 2D sprites! Well, I had to go back over everything I had tried and just see how those turned out! Predictably, some views look better than others, and I can see how the 2d view for some locations might need to be touched up before they’re usable:
So, as a test, I decided to do a rendition of my character, Vorpal, the superheroic Cheshire Cat. My first attempt went for a very basic pixel art character approach:
That’s pretty cute, actually. But I decided I could go with a more complex model, and thus I finally ended up with this:
Now that’s more satisfying!
My verdict: MagicaVoxel is a lovely tool, easy to use and easy to learn. It’ll have you building in no time, and you’ll surprise yourself with what you can do.