In today's main Gamasutra feature, and in an immensely helpful hands-on article, art director Riccard Linde (Battlefield Vietnam
) discusses how artists can create better textures for video games by efficiently managing the visual results of texture compression.
Linde explains in his introduction:
"Creating mods and games for PCs, we often have the fortune of large amounts of memory available, but creating art for low-spec machines, or even some next-gen consoles, is a whole different matter. We need to be more aware of how we use the memory available, and how we achieve the best quality for our textures. Knowing more about how DXT compression works, it can benefit you to use smaller-sized uncompressed textures, rather than increasing the texture size to compensate for the DXT compression and remaining within the same memory footprint.
As you most likely have seen, if you use a heavily compressed JPG, the texture becomes blurry, smeared and blocky. DXT has its similar blocky problems, as it will affect up the image in what can be seen as an uncontrolled way, something that can have devastating negative visual impact on our textures."
You can now read the full Gamasutra feature on the subject
, including multiple pieces of artwork demonstrating ways to mitigate the problem and create high-quality compressed art (no registration required, please feel free to link to the article from external websites).