The Environments Behind TideTurn

From the defenders to elements within the map, the world of TideTurn is brought to life by Ali Akdogan, Stanion Studio’s 3D Modeler of environments and map assets. As the game reaches completion, it’s been exciting seeing TideTurn’s expansive lore shown through the details in each 3D map model. It’s even more exciting imagining players interacting with these elements, Akdogan pointed out. 

Akdogan has been doing 3D art for five years. He now handles the 3D modeling and texturing of map assets for TideTurn, a tactical and strategic third-person shooter that blends fast-paced action with split-second decision making and high-energy communication. 

Explain to me what exactly you do at TideTurn. 

I create the map objects and components in the game that players see and interact with. I modeled the trolley in the San Francisco map that characters can jump on and ride across the city. I modeled the boat and many of the shrines and buildings and objects in the Japan map.  

TideTurn indie game map

Without these environmental objects, the map is more or less an empty field. First, I get the modeling assignment from the level designer. Then I start the planning stage and begin the 3D sculpting and modeling. After that, I do the texturing and then the UV mapping. And then we test the object on the map.

What are some of the challenges for creating 3D map models for defenders? 

The major challenge is usually reference and art direction. That’s usually the challenge in every game development journey. But in TideTurn, each defender has such a detailed backstory and personality that we try to support those elements and abilities on the map.

What has been your favorite thing to create for TideTurn? 

The Japanese buildings were interesting to work on. We had to study traditional Japanese structures, including the paneling, roof shapes, windows… We wanted to incorporate these important elements into our own buildings to really make the map authentic and immersive. 

But we also had to keep in mind the insane movement options available in TideTurn. Defenders can jump on top of buildings, running across the roof. They can also climb up the buildings by creating a water path, which they can also submerge into and traverse. They can jump out of the water and dive into another water path or object elsewhere on the map. 

It requires a balancing of elegant, beautiful design to ensure that the buildings and map objects in the environment support this kind of fluid, fast movement, and mechanics.

TideTurn buildings map

What’s the importance of creating 3D models for things like cars, benches etc. in a map for TideTurn? These are sometimes elements people don’t think about when playing. 

Creating different objects on the map improves the aesthetic. But it also keeps players engaged and creates a more interactive experience. In a game like TideTurn, players are utilizing every little thing on the map to create paths and unique movement patterns. 

We want to make sure they have a variety of objects on each map to support their creation of these unexpected techniques. 

What do you think players will like about the game? 

I think the conflict between Humans and Atlantians is an exciting approach. I think players will have a hard time choosing who to side with, especially once they see all of the exciting abilities on each side and learn more about why each defender is fighting for the earth’s oceans. 

How do you like being a part of the TideTurn team at Stanion Studios? 

It’s been really nice working with the team. They are open to ideas and constantly seeking ways to improve the game’s quality. We are always collaborating on exciting things to add to the game or make the maps more immersive.

Olivia “y05h1eggz” Richman //

Stanion Studios Marketing Copyeditor

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