Environment FX Reel (Champions Online): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=81ivRU3zOtk

LinkedIn Profile: http://www.linkedin.com/in/flaagan

My work experience as an fx artist at Cryptic Studios (January 2007 – October 2010) 

  • Champions Online
    • Worked on “Marvel Universe Online” project (powers and environment fx) from near the start until it’s cancelation
    • Worked on Champions Online from its creation to post launch, and continued to offer both technical and fx creation support after moving off the project
    • Environment FX
      • Created and (and often placed) environment fx for the “Crisis” and “Zone” maps; the sheer number of fx done for the environments in Champions warrants just listing the zones, as I created most (and in many cases all) of the fx used on the maps:
        • Millenium City Crisis
        • Millenium City
        • Desert Crisis
        • Desert
        • Canada Crisis
        • Canada
        • Lemuria Crisis
        • Lemuria
        • Monster Island Crisis
        • Monster Island
        • Vibora Bay Crisis
        • Vibora Bay
      • Created standard and one-off environment fx used in numerous instanced maps and missions
      • Created the fx used for mission icons
      • Handled environment fx optimization, including using internal tools and technology to drastically improve fx performance throughout the game
      • Created a ‘standard set’ of destructible object fx to be usable by designers across multiple objects
      • Worked with designers to determine ‘standard sizes’ for the explosions, design would pick an explosion size and type and combine it with debris bursts
        • Created a set of small, medium, and large explosions for a variety of objects
        • Created debris bursts for multiple object types in small, medium, and large amounts
      • Created fx used for the numerous “Nemesis” missions
      • Created fx used for the various vehicles seen in the game, such as
        • Viper hover vehicles
        • Lemurian subs
    • Powers / Other
      • Created fx for DLC, preorder bonuses, numerous in-game consumables and mission items
      • Created the “level up” fx, as well as the standard hit fx used throughout the game
      • Created Martial Arts, Munitions, and Beastial power sets, also acted as support with other power sets and travel powers where needed
        • All power sets are designed to be hue-shiftable by both players and the designer
        • Worked with coders and designers to create a standard weapon parameterization setup that’s been used across multiple projects, including weapon set limitations for power sets
        • Worked with animation team to set up a animation skeleton and message-based system to use a minimal number of one-off fx across multiple powers (such as a ‘standard’ gunshot that can work on multiple powers, only firing when animation tells it to).
      • Martial arts & munitions sets custom weapons / powers (also referred to as “power replaces”)
        • Worked with outsourced and in-house weapon models
        • Worked with design and coders to create a process for setting up weapons, usable as unlockable and one-off items
        • Created all files needed for design to easily implement weapons into unlockables
        • Set up proper scaling and bone positioning
        • Set up all nodes needed for fx origins
        • Helped create a material standard (used across multiple projects) for custom weapon colorization (both done by players and as specified by design team)
        • set up all materials for weapons, defined ‘standard’ weapon colors
        • created a set of munitions fx types that are reusable across all the weapons
        • created a set of melee weapon fx
        • created a standard method for attaching fx to weapons (used across multiple projects)
      • Created powers and fx for numerous bosses and critter groups, including:
        • “Fake” Dr. Destroyer, Mega Destroyer, Destroyer Bots
        • Foxbat & Fox Battle Bots
        • Therakiel, Nephilim, Vampires
        • Rictus, Bloodstone, Tachyon
        • PSI, Medusa, PsiMon
        • Qwyjibo, MegaTerak, Teliosaurus
        • Telios
        • Qularr
        • Bronze King, Lemurians, Ghost Pirates
        • Ghost Cowboys, Gigaton
        • Wildlife Critters
      • Created power sets used for post-launch special events such as Bloodmoon, Nemesis Confrontation, and Revelation
      • Created a large costume fx set for both generic usage (tintable) and one-offs for numerous bosses, critters, and for player costume customization, such as
        • Glows and auras for various body parts (hands, eye, arms, legs, head, etc)
        • The standard ‘ghost’ costume fx
        • A ‘standard’ hologram costume fx
      • Created the ‘boost’ fx, both the dropped item and the body aura visible after a boost is applied
      • Created numerous ‘status’ used for numerous buff and debuffs, as well as ‘low health’, and one-offs used for special items and consumables
      • Created numerous weather and ‘on screen’ (screen space) fx
      • Worked with the animation team to set up a standard for turrets, including a message-based system so that one fx can be used with a variety of turrets types regardless of barrel count or firing rate.
      • Worked with coders and design to set up standard targeting fx
      • Numerous optimization passes on powers and environment fx as new tech became available
  • Star Trek Online
    • Created various “Ground” and “Space” powers, as well as environment / “weather” fx
      • Due to the short period of time I worked on STO, and style / design changes, I cannot show any of this work
    • Prior to launch, I was brought on to go through somewhere between 1/3 and 1/2 of the fx used on STO and do an optimization pass
  • D&D: Neverwinter
    • After working on Champions and STO, I moved on to Cryptic’s Neverwinter project (around the start of 2010)
    • Worked initially as the sole fx artist on the project, creating both template powers fx and various environment fx, moved to (mostly) environment fx after a second fx artist was moved onto the project.
    • Using previously created standards, set up a process for turning weapon concept art directly into color-customizable materials for standard weapon geometries
    • Worked with environment artists to created kit piece fx used with assets
    • Worked with fx coders to debug, define features of, and demo to artists an fx-based cloth / physics system
    • Due to the current ‘unexposed’ nature of this project, and the fact that what I worked on may or may not be in the final product, I cannot currently show off any of this work
  • Other projects
    • Assisted with numerous other projects (cancelled, and, and unannounced), offering both fx or technical support when needed

That about sums it up. Unfortunately my reel is going to be of work that’s at least a year old and older, as I can’t show off what I worked on for STO and Neverwinter. I’d prefer to get into environment fx again, as I’ve found them the most fun to work on, especially because they lead to a lot interaction between myself and the rest of the development team.