SketchUp is a user-friendly, entry-level modeling program that can be used for game prototype design and modding.
Using its 3D visualization and physics-based simulation tools, SketchUp enables game designers and developers to generate a realistic and visually immersive game environment, levels and props.
A game designer can get the ability to make presentations and concepts quickly, effortlessly and reasonably.
SketchUp includes a drawing layout feature which is very useful for storyboarding.
Sketchup, the must have software for video games
With SketchUp, the game developer can stimulate the game development process by quickly inserting realistic details.
They can use 3D drawing to handle each plan proficiently.
SketchUp provides a modeling advantage and promotes the application and progression of free and open-source 3D models, as well as high-quality game resources and textures.
All 3D models created with SketchUp can be imported into third-party game engines such as Meshlab, GIMP, and Unity 3D to turn them into 3D game assets that can be used for game creation.
Game developers can take digital photos and use SketchUp to convert them into 3D objects to create fast and fun games.
They will be able to create realistic 3D models like land, buildings, barrels, vehicles with rusty fences and low polygon 3D objects to bring the game to life.
SketchUp makes it easy to render surfaces in editable styles, implement third-party “plug-in” programs with pragmatic photo rendering, and position its models in Google Earth.
The game developer can find free models in an online repository of pre-built objects, called 3D warehouse, and download cars, boats, people, trees and whatever he wants there.
SketchUp exists in several versions, including SketchUp Pro, which is very useful for game developers. With SketchUp Pro, they will be able to export models for use in other software.
SketchUp Pro can produce 3DS, OBJ, FBX, and COLLADA (DAE) files, among others. The game designer can quickly realize his ideas with SketchUp and transfer them to his favorite 3D program.
The game developer can create a complete graphical user interface (or GUI) with SketchUp, then export it to a third-party program such as 3D Studio MAX for rendering and finalization to program it into the game at the end.
SketchUp offers the game designer/developer the following advantages:
- Perfect game level design
- Generate premium quality textures for games
- Create dazzling graphics
- Get a 3D preview of all models
- Add materials and colors, as well as textures, lights, entities to surfaces.
- Create a quick animation
- Model low-poly game assets to sell in game asset stores.
- Photo-textured models for ultra pragmatism
- Create “ready to use” textures and models from photographs.
- With built-in sandbox tools, carve uneven terrain.
- Set up some lighting and walk around the game visualization.
- Create 3D physical objects and environments with professional graphics, levels and props.
- Save predefined views to show during presentations.
- Instantly find aerial and terrain images for multiple locations from Google Earth.
- Configure your character’s controller
- Fence the areas of your creation
How to train in Sketchup?
There are many resources through which a game developer/designer can improve their design skills.
Robin Jongh has published a book called “SketchUp for Game Design”.
This book provides step-by-step tutorial and screenshots which can be very useful for beginner developers in 3D game development.
Game developers will learn how to create a complete game level with realistic 3D models, textures, levels and props.
The book is available from Packt Publishing or on Amazon (with a Kindle version).
Stefan Boeykens, the famous architect-engineer and doctoral researcher at KU Leuven, personally reviewed the book and gave his valuable opinion on the pros and cons of the book.
Renowned art director and concept artist Robh Ruppel has used SketchUp to design award-winning video games such as Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. SketchUp was used to visualize the environment of video games.
It is the first video game of 2009, considered the most critically acclaimed game of the year.
Robh Ruppel also gave an exclusive interview about how he uses SketchUp to make decisions and design shapes in this video game. The interview was published in SketchUp artist.