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Google SketchUp for Game Design: Beginner's Guide Paperback – November 25, 2011


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 270 pages
  • Publisher: Packt Publishing (November 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849691347
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849691345
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,104,258 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"I know a lot of teenagers who would go nuts trying out the book's projects. I imagine that someone who becomes really proficient in the applications shown in Robin's book would be well on their way to a cool career." - Bonnie Roskes, Author of Google SketchUp Cookbook.

"It presumes that you're a SketchUp beginner, but then quickly gets on to the good stuff... Robin's writing is accessible and easy to follow. He packs a lot of information into each page, but manages to keep the tone friendly and even funny at times."  - Aidan Chopra, Google

"The book is full of screenshots and step-by-step tutorials to help make things as clear as possible. If you've ever had an interest in developing 3D games, this book would be a great way to get started." - Mickey Mellen, Google Earth Blog

About the Author

Robin de Jongh

Robin de Jongh worked for many years as a Design Engineer and 3D modeler, and was an early advocate of SketchUp. He has a degree in Computer Aided Product Design from Nottingham Trent University, and is the author of SketchUp for Architectural Visualization: Beginner's Guide. He works as a book editor and lives near Nottingham, England.


More About the Author

An experienced 3D artist and CAD designer, Robin focuses on learning how to use free and Open Source software to give commercial quality results. Robin worked for many years in the construction industry as a CAD Technician and Design Engineer before moving on to becoming a Structural Consulting Engineer. He sat on the AEC (UK) CAD and BIM Standards committee and was a member of the Institution of Engineering Designers and a Professional Engineer registered with the Engineering Council UK.

As well as authoring three books he has edited over fifty computer books.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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See all 8 customer reviews
So for anyone wanting to create 3D walkthrough spaces, I highly recommend checking this book out.
F. Kahl
I imagine that someone who becomes really proficient in the applications shown in Robin's book would be well on their way to a cool career.
Bonnie Roskes
I like how author grabs your attention with his passion for the subject that really comes through in every chapter and makes it a fun read.
SAM

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Bonnie Roskes on January 17, 2012
Format: Paperback
I'm a SketchUp author myself, and it's always fun to see what others are writing about.

This book actually targets two industries: game design and film / stage. Both use storyboarding to lay out scenarios, and Robin de Jongh explains how to do this in SketchUp, helped by other applications. I'm not an expert (to put it generously) in either field, so the fact that this is a self-stated "Beginner's Guide" is great for me.

To be clear, this isn't a book that teaches SketchUp modeling, though there's nothing presented that requires advanced SketchUp skills. But you'll be ill-served if you pick up this book with no SketchUp experience at all. This book is really about integration - combining SketchUp skills with skills in other applications.

Like Robin's previous book on rendering, this one is quite fun to read. Robin is very funny, and while this one isn't as laugh-out-loud as his first one (maybe his editors wanted this one to be more serious), the intro to each chapter is something to look forward to. And his casual, informal, writing style makes this book a lot more fun than your typical, dry "how-to" book.

And like in his first book, Robin's passion for free stuff comes through loud and clear. He uses free software for graphic editing (GIMP), and finds places to download free models and textures (CGTextures). He demonstrates using Unity 3D for setting up the environment after importing SketchUp assets (terrain and buildings and props). He also focuses on doing things as easily as possible - such as making model changes in SketchUp, rather than in more complex app's like Unity.

There's a lot in here about textures and materials. Not just how to use them in SketchUp, but the most efficient way to use them.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By SAM on January 30, 2012
Format: Paperback
Overall this a fantastic book to have in the 3D section your library. Beginners will find this book most useful as it will get you up and running with the tools you need to begin your journey with 3D & gaming, but even experienced pros will find SketchUp a very useful tool in rapid prototyping; particularly since you can import sketchUp models into programs like 3ds Max.

I like how author grabs your attention with his passion for the subject that really comes through in every chapter and makes it a fun read. It lays out what you can -and can't- accomplish with SketchUp and just how relevant this free tool can be to a 3D artist whether a professional or a hobbyist. The book is refreshingly honest about such a complex subject as 3D asset creation.

You'll get hands on experience though practical exercises that are easy to follow and encourage adding your own personal style as opposed to cut and dry recipe examples. These examples are great jumping off points that allow you to practice techniques used throughout the book. I like how each exercise ends with a challenge to push you to take the exercise further.

My favorite aspect of this book is how it focus exclusively on FREE tools available that allow anyone to set up a 3D development environment. Sketch-Up, Google Warehouse, Gimp (Photoshop alternative), CGtextures, Unity3D, Meshalb - all the tools necessary to create AAA quality game assets or any interactive experience. What's exciting about this is that any with curiosity can jump in.

The modeling exercises start with creating simple but useful game objects and introduce a repeatable work flow: researching real-world objects, preparing textures for game engines, modeling and texturing objects, and finally importing them into a game engine.
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By R. Sullivan on February 19, 2012
Format: Paperback
An excellent book relating to 3d modeling for games. Although, one thing I didn't care for is how the author proclaims how money can be made selling models on sites such as turbosquid. I believe many (most?) people who purchase models on those sites created with SketchUp will likely leave negative reviews, as the SketchUp models tend to be too simple for people to be happy with. Other than that, a great book. I'm quite happy with my purchase.
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By F. Kahl on February 18, 2012
Format: Paperback
Google SketchUp for Game Design is exactly what the title says: A Beginner's Guide to creating navigable 3D gaming environments. The specific process this book focuses on is to create models in Google SketchUp, then bring those models into Unity to create walkthrough environments. The audience for this book is anyone who is interested in creating 3D walkthroughs in UNITY, which can be published to the web, using the unity player. Its easy to follow for anyone with or without experience with either tool. I could see this book applying to budding game designers, architects, artists, or anyone interested in creating 3D environments.

This book is broken up into chapters that break it down into easy to follow steps to create models including terrain, buildings, cars, and objects including palettes, barrel, wrench, etc. They cover modeling from photos, texturing, optimizing the model and more. The car modeling chapter, in particular, is a great technique. There's also lots of references for where to get free textures and models on the web, for you to use if you don't want to model them yourself. Once the models are created, they are imported into Unity. The author goes step by step to teach you how to create walk-arounds in the model, and you're off!

Its pretty amazing how far all this technology has come, because pretty much anyone from my mom to my son could pick up this book and start making their own 3D environments, using freely available software. I'd be really interested to use this as a high school class curriculum and see what kids could make. So for anyone wanting to create 3D walkthrough spaces, I highly recommend checking this book out. It cuts out the learning curve and gets you creating cool stuff fast!
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