James LaPierre

Customize Your Robots with Wacky Cosmetics!

James LaPierre
Customize Your Robots with Wacky Cosmetics!

What could possibly be cooler than building the robot of your dreams in RoboCo?

Customizing your creation with wacky hats and cosmetics, of course! 🎩🎩

Hello! Meg here. As our team’s 3D artist, I spend most of my days creating all sorts of objects, environments, textures, and more – pretty much everything you see in the game outside of menus, UI elements, and the robot parts themselves!

Today, I’d like to show off some of the cool in-game accessories that I’ve made recently, as well as give you a behind-the-screens look at my process for creating these cosmetics. It may seem like modeling a simple item like a tophat would be fairly straightforward, but you may be surprised to find that the process is a bit more involved than it seems. Let’s take a quick look:

First, I start out in Maya and model the cosmetic. I model the asset and usually the next LOD (LOD0 and LOD1) this means I can put in a bit more detail since we don't use textures and I can LOD out detail the further away the camera gets from the asset. 

Then, I apply vertex colors to the asset based on how many colors I want on that cosmetic in .1 increments from 1-0.1 so there's a good amount of colors I can have per object. There are 3 on this asset.

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I then export the assets and start making the prefab in Unity. For this police hat asset, I use a pin and bobble joint to allow it to bob around when put on a robot. There is also our material system, collision made out of primitives and a few other scripts- i.e highlighting, etc., for each cosmetic. Some cosmetics have simple rigs that allow them to move in different ways with physics and VFX.

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After all that, I add it to the database so it can be used in game. This means creating a Part Data Asset for each cosmetic with unique parameters to be displayed in the UI. This includes any special rotations, scaling, naming, and a message that displays when hovered over in the cosmetic menu in-game.

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Once that's done, you just drag and drop it into the Parts Database and presto-change-o, you have a cosmetic ready to use when you hit play!

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Now that you’ve familiarized yourself with the process of creating these assets, here’s a look at a few of my favorite so far – using my trusty PigeonBot as a model, of course:

🔪 Chef Hat 🔪

🦄 Unicorn Horn 🦄

🌵 Garden Hat + Cactus + Succulent🌵

🔎 Fedora + Mustache 🔎

💭 Bubble Machine 💭

Keep in mind that the above items are merely a fraction of the cosmetics that will be present in our game at launch – but we hope you’re already getting excited about the customization possibilities afforded by these items. And if you’ve got an item in mind that you’d like to see in RoboCo, give us a holler on Twitter and maybe we’ll make your robo-dreams come true!

As usual, keep watch here on our dev blog for routine RoboCo development updates. Oh, and did we mention you can wishlist our game on Steam right now? That’s right: tell your friends, your family, your foes, a stranger – whoever! Thanks for your support as always, and we’ll see you next time!