The greatest rock-racing, tower defense, art history game is back! Like the title says, Bigger and Boulder cranks up the surrealism and gameplay with chaotic 2-vs-2 multiplayer, new time periods, and improved graphics, physics, and destructibility powered by UE4 to be, well… BIGGER AND BOULDER.
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Release Date: Q1/Q2 2017

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May 29

Rock of Ages giveaway! Win a Rock of Ages figurine!

Hi guys,

We're running a new Rock of Ages themed giveaway. This time we'll draw a cool 3D print of the game's lovely boulder lead! Ideal for your videogame collection.



To participate all you have to do is be a member of the Rock of Ages 2 hub. In addition, if you wishlist the game on Steam your chances of winning are twice as good!!

To join the hub press "Follow" on the Rock of Ages 2 Steam store page:

http://store.steampowered.com/app/434460/Rock_of_Ages_2_Bigger__Boulder/

We're also running this contest on some of our other social media sites. Join our Facebook and Twitter pages and share our posts about this giveaway if you want to increase your odds:

Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/theACETeam/

Twitter:
https://twitter.com/theACETeam

We'll be drawing 3 figurines in the RoA2 hub. Winners will be announced on Friday June the 9th. Good luck to everyone! Don't forget to tell your friends!

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May 9

Impressionist Art in Rock of Ages 2, using Unreal Engine 4

People who have been following our blogs will know by now that we're putting a lot of effort into creating distinct visual art styles for the different art periods of the game. Of all the work we've done, the most radical and unique is most definitely the real time rendering of impressionist type levels in Rock of Ages 2 (Siggraph worthy stuff here!).

The following image is not concept art – it is an actual in-game screenshot of one of the levels in the game:


Edmundo developed the technique we use to make Impressionist art, and the method is not based on a post-process that we apply over an existing 3D scene. The assets are all custom-built into the game using a creative way of mixing 3D assets, with 3D brush strokes that are “hand placed” by the artists in 3D Studio Max.

Below is the first Impressionist level we developed and our source inspiration; a painting of Monet:


In very simple terms, the way this works is that we custom paint simplified base models with a variety of brush strokes, similar to how hair is placed on characters in current video game development. We use the vertex colors of our mesh and brush strokes to determine the colors of the “paint”.


Baba Yaga, are you in there?

These painted strokes use a special shader in Unreal Engine 4 which does many things, such as lighting, aligning the strokes properly to the camera, and also allows us to control the width and thickness of the brush strokes. This allows us to make the art seem as if it was painted by a very thin paint brush or a very thick and larger paint brush. (See image above)


Here you can see the technique applied to some assets and a comparison to regular models. (Note: The models on the left are not the same models than the ones on the right. They are completely different assets)

While we mostly use this rendering technique for static meshes and world geometry (re-creating all units in the game could be done, but would be too much work) it can be used on skeletal meshes with bones and animations. The technique is also compatible with lightmapped objects. Here is another example of a level using the Impressionism rendering style:



There is a lot more that can be said about our implementation of this art style, but we try keeping these blog posts short so that they are appealing to everyone. We will probably re-visit this subject in future trailers or maybe another post. For now you can watch the Rock of Ages 2 trailer if you want to see a brief glimpse of how the art style looks in the game itself.

Who said games aren't art? Our Impressionism levels would make Vincent van Gogh proud :P


(Note: This is a screenshot of a custscene – it is not using the implementation discussed in this blog post. It is purely 2D art)

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About This Game

The greatest “giant rocks rolling through historical/artistic ages” tower defense game is back with Rock of Ages II: Bigger and Boulder. Just like the title says, Bigger and Boulder cranks up the surrealism and gameplay with to be, well… BIGGER AND BOULDER. With an emphasis on the chaotic new 2-vs-2 multiplayer, new time periods, and improved graphics, physics, and destructibility powered by Unreal Engine 4, players will need to be ready for some intense rocking and rolling.

Rock of Ages II: Bigger and Boulder features:

  • ACE Team’s Trademark Quirkiness - The Monty Python-esque humor is turned up to 11, as players literally rock and roll through the ages. Humorous animated vignettes will also make a return in full force, so famous historical figures beware!
  • An Emphasis on Multiplayer - A little friendly competition never hurt anyone, so that’s why ACE Team decided to improve the multiplayer feature of the game. Play with up to four players online in a 2v2 match to the death with the ability to customize banners and colors for your “units.” Oh, and did we mention that opposing tracks can now intersect each other?
  • A Positively Absurd Art Style - Just like in the original game, ACE Team has created various levels inspired by the greatest art periods in history. Players will gaze upon exquisite art from the Egyptians, Late Gothic and Early Renaissance era, Surrealist movement, as they carve a path of destruction with their rolling rocks of doom!
  • Improved Physics and Destructible Environments - With upgraded physics and even more things to be cracked, crushed, flattened, and slammed, rolling various rocks down a hill has never been a more pleasant experience!
  • Utter Chaos - With the addition of brand new defensive units and unique boulders with special traits, chaos reigns supreme so be sure not to take each turn for granite.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: 64-Bit Windows 7 Service Pack 1, or Windows 8
    • Processor: 2 GHz Dual-Core 64-bit CPU
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX10 Compatible GPU with 1 GB Video RAM
    • DirectX: Version 10
    • Storage: 6 GB available space

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