To go along with the changing textures in the corridors, the tree is going to change textures every time a corridor is completed. This removes the jarring effect of going from abstract to realism to abstract.
I made a quick realistic texture from a cgtextures photo, then hand painted a bark texture. I had a look on polycount for some stylised texture inspiration. I then ran the cutout filter over those textures to make the graphic ones.
I used blueprints to change the material after each corridor. I used the score variable I had created earlier to change the material if the score was equal to a certain value. I had problems with this at the start, which may have been due to floating point errors. As I need non decimal values, I changed score to an integer which fixed the issue.
At this point I wanted to test the game, but kept getting errors when trying to render lightmaps. I fought with this for a while, before realizing that this was due to me running the project off a memory stick that was full. I coped it over to my pc and was then able to test it. I really like the idea and think its working well, but its not enough. While the texture style fits nicley with the corridors and the symbolism is pretty overt, the tree looks a little odd standing there on its own in its realistic texture. I think the solution to this is to create a whole room that symbolizes the mind.
As for the textures themselves, I am happy with the stylised and graphic textures, though more time could have been spent on them. I think the perception of depth in the hand painted bark is particularly well executed. The realistic textures are not so great – its very obvious that they are just pulled photo textures. I could use DDO to sort this, or try to create my own photos from scratch. I’ve never really been sure where etiquette lies on this – is it ok to use royalty free photo textures? The main issue is the UVS of the tree. They are just awful to deal with! The branches are way too small and are arranged very awkwardly. This is because they were done hapazardly as they were designed to take a plain emissive texture. Trees seem particularly difficult to UV and I am definelty starting this model again to try and fix the issues.