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3.8 out of 5 stars6
3.8 out of 5 stars
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on 8 June 2011
First of all: I only have the ebook-version of this book, so I can't say much about the quality of the printed version. The ebook-version however is in full color and of high quality.

The book is seperated into 16 chapters, including one about the basic 3D terminology for people completely new to 3D and a longer one about getting started with the zBrush interface for people coming from other 3D software or zBrush versions prior 4. The explanation of 3D-Terminology is short but enough for a complete beginner to follow the book. The book is aimed at game-artists but the infos and techniques presented troughout the book could also be applied to other areas as well. Each chapter starts with a short summary of what will be done during that chapter, key concepts are explained before being used. If a new or advanced technique is used while creating one of the models, there is a short and very useful "What just happened?" section that explains everything in detail. Another great feature of the book are the "Pop Quizzes" that are scattered throughout the book, these contain questions regarding the techniques you have learned during the chapters. So you can try and test yourself!

There are 4 main models that are being made in this book: A spooky tree, a sci-fi drone(featured on the cover), a creature(with fur and accesoires) and a harvester ship. So there are two hard-surface models and two organic ones created, which is really a good choice to cover nearly all of zBrush's features. All of these models are of a high quality. These 4 models are used to introduce zSpheres & zSketch, organic & hard-surface sculpting techniques, polypainting, extracting maps, preparing a model for a game and many more. Also there are numerous small tipps and tricks that are a nice addition to your zBrush workflow. Aside from the tutorials there is a useful overview of the parts of a game-asset pipeline in a studio and for which stages zBrush could be used.

The weakest part of the book is the cover, because all of the three other models of the book look more advanced, but maybe that's just my opinion.

All in all is this a great book and I can only recommend it, not only beginners but everyone trying to sharpen his/her zBrush skills!
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on 8 May 2011
Scherer explains at some length how ZBrush version 4 lets you fairly rapidly build detailed artwork for computer games. As the book initially promises, the program suppresses much of the technical computing requirements that relate to putting together a mesh of vertices into something approximating a figure or object in your game.

Many functions are embedded within ZBrush that give you as the artist the means of easily and intuitively applying a special effect to compose. One nice example is the 'Bulge', which bloats a surface. In the text this is used to expand the dominant muscles of a leg. This is done within the larger context of using free form sculpting to craft an entire character. Far nicer than grubby and tedious mucking about with polygons and vertices.

Though you will probably need to explicitly deal with meshes in shaping the finer details of a character. Another concept available for use is the polygroup, which can handle mesh manipulation.

The book goes into quite a few other techniques. The overall package can be quite slick when you get used to most of these methods.

But a drawback of the book, and not of ZBrush, is some of the diagrams. Typically the ones I mean are screen captures of menus, where the background is dark. It becomes hard to see much of the details with this low contrast. The best figures are done against a white background. But the hard to see ones are sometimes done because the images were then edited to add white coloured rectangles or text that point to certain aspects. Graphically, it is not an easy problem, especially when the ultimate output is as hardcopy grayscale. Still, and ironically because this is after all a book on computer graphics, more effort should have been spent on improving the figures.
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on 25 April 2011
ZBrush 4 Sculpting for Games Beginner's Guide reads in the way the manufacturer's of Zbrush should have taken in producing official Zbrush training. Most Zbrush training is produced by impressively technical people who assume that the reader has some existing degree of knowledge of the subject often leaving out the motivation for wanting to learn to use the software effectively. This guide differs in that it is indeed written and illustrated by an impressively technical minded person who understand that many people may need to be led gently by the hand into the more complex aspects aspects of Zbrush sculpting and he succeeds by offering useful explanations of why he approaches specific aspects of modeling in a given way towards a specific and practical goal. Lots of step by step illustrations detailing every stage of every process ensure that even the most enthusiastic novice will advance both technically and creatively while following the suggested workflows. The book covers organic and hard surface modeling exploring many of the often unused features in Zbrush with regular "Pop Quiz" features that really do help impress and reinforce the learned knowledge.
Ive used Zbrush for over 8 years now and im very pleased to say that Ive learned a few new tricks from this publication.
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on 2 February 2015
good book
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on 15 September 2012
Be warned the images in the paper back version are appalling, actually they are a disgrace. Zbrush the program, is bizarrely laid out - very confusing and not at all intuitive and good visuals for reference are needed to make sense of it.
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on 10 May 2011
book received free of charge

For one handling of zbrush, if you wish to work by the object, that is form by learning step by step to obtain a precise result, I can only recommend you this book. Built well, interesting and formative.

On the other hand, I am really anxious to specify that if you aim at one professional optics, you are here only in a small third of the road! And it will very quickly be necessary to continue to train you to respect this "professional" centring. And if you have only an artistic aim, it misses the concept and the rendering. It would have taken only some additional pages, but at least, they would have been there!

And it is finally, what I retained of the book ' This book addresses exclusively beginners. OK. But Scherer has toproduce to us quickly the continuation, because there, it has to be really very just, even if to be already the very good beginning of 314 pages! ^^
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