Engine: Unreal Engine 3 (UDK) Year: 2010
Zest Foundation is an project that's very dear to me because it opened so many doors on my career and ultimately landed me a job at Blizzard. Zest started as a simple experiment on modular design, heavily inspired by Mass Effect. I spent months just playing around with different styles and techniques, until something clicked and it all came together.
This environment takes place in a low-orbit station and features a few different areas. My main goal was to make a big environment out of the fewer amount of modular pieces possible, and that was accomplished by using different lighting and props for different areas. Though this environment aged quite a lot now, I think the style still holds up and I'm proud of how distinct it looks, even though the influences are very obvious.
I compiled everything I learned while making this on a big tutorial on modular environments. Some of the information on this tutorial aged a bit but the core is still relevant.
Fun fact: Zest was the name of a cheap restaurant me and my buddies used to eat. Even though the price was much cheaper than other restaurants around, the staff always tried their best to serve everyone well :)