Builder Tips: Composition and Process
Tips and tricks for composing the coolest virtual environments in Decentraland’s Builder
Decentraland’s Builder comes with all sorts of helpful tools and lots of fun models that you can use when creating your scenes. However, just like any creative process, there’s plenty of tricks and techniques that you can use to make your scenes more realistic, engaging, and memorable.
Keep reading for some easy Builder tips to help with your scene composition!
Rotate, rotate, rotate!
When placing a lot of non-structural items in a row, give each one a little bit rotation variance on all axes. This adds texture and dimension. Try it on rocks lining a path or fences (especially temporary construction fencing)!
When in doubt, rotate everything!
This will help prevent the artificial consistency that always pops up when placing or duplicating similar items. For example, check out our woodland path below before we mixed and matched the position of the rocks… see how artificial it looks?
By using the rotation gizmo and tweaking the position of each rock, our woodland path looks far more believable.
Making subtle, small adjustments like this can make a big difference in how your scenes feel.
Tip: hold SHIFT when manipulating an object to turn off the snap-to-grid feature. This makes precision adjustments much easier for smaller objects.
Build in three dimensions, not two!
Don’t forget that you have three dimensions in which to build! The more vertical height you can work into your scenes the more interesting they become, especially if you add multiple layers that users can explore.
Try using light poles or fence posts as supports to make a pirate boardwalk! The floor tiles make great platforms, walkways, and catwalks. All of these structural models have colliders, too.
Frame your scene
Always think about how your scene might fit into its surrounding LANDscape.
One way you can draw attention to your creation is by building short walls around the edges of your parcel, if you have the spare resources. Even a partially completed fence will act as a frame for your larger composition.
We’ve noticed that it’s a little easier to start building your scene in the middle of your parcel(s) and then working your way out, rather than starting on the edges and building inwards.
Just like photography, it’s helpful to think about where you want users to focus their attention. Place most of your detailed items and story elements in the center of your scene, and expand from there to flesh out the ambiance that you want to achieve.
Tell a story
The best scenes all tell a story. These “place stories” often have three parts: this place was made for an activity, but now something else happens here, and soon something entirely different will take place.
What’s your story?
Sign up for the Creator Contest
Put these composition and design tricks to use when building your submissions for the upcoming Creator Contest! Not signed up yet? It’s never too late, just visit contest.decentraland.org to get started.