Color And Design For Unity Developers
Updated: Jun 4
Learning color and design can be a complex thing. You have millions of colors schemes to choose from when designing your worlds. Using complementary colors is a good way to set a natural mood in a game. In this case we are going to look at a simple dungeon 3D environment with some dark dank lighting.
We grabbed some old 3D props that we got 5 years ago to see how they hold up in HDRP lighting. As you can see, HDRP can really make a difference in how you mesh looks. All the textures are 1024 x 1024. The models are mobile ready low poly models. We built a simple scene here, watch the video to see how this scene was put together.
We started off by creating a new scene. The HDRP pipeline already has the post processing setup. All you have to do is click on post processing settings to make your adjustments.
We added Volmetric Fog to give us that dark scary mysterious look.
Next we bump up the ambient occlusion
Next up we turned on the Lift Gamma Gain and adjusted the colors to get a bit more contrast between colors
We turned on contact shadows to give us a bit more contrast between dark and lighter shadows.
For lighting we used point lights. We placed orange color lights around the lava pool and green lights around the dungeon walls
In the video below you can see how we placed the lights to create a nice dark scene. Be sure to look at other illustrations and concept art and break them down to their basic colors and you will get your color and design scheme. If you look at the color pallet below you can see how we just took at few colors to make our color scheme.
Another good source is Adobes Color Wheel. Its a really good resource for picking out colors for what ever you are trying to design. Adobe color wheel will work for graphic designers, illustrators, film and concept artist. Most Schools for game design teach this technique.
Green and orange colors have a warm look to them. Since the scene is setup in a lava pool, we are going to use the warm version of these colors. Lava takes up most of the scene there for we are going to make the orange glow the dominate color. We are placing point lights around the lava pool, just enough for the warm glow effect. Below are some examples of similar color schemes.
Notice the contrast between the dark and light colors. Notice how the ghostly characters are in the green hue while hero's are in the more warm orange hue.
Notice how the colors give this scene a nice murky look.
Using complementary colors like red and blue can also make for some nice dark scene. Red and blue colors are great for Sci fi and modern environments. Notice the color scheme on the pictures below.
Here you will notice the two colors dark blue and a nice saturated red hue's to give a nice synthwave cyberpunk vibe
When designing scary dank dark environment don't just rely on lighting alone. Keep in mind that color will play a vital roll in immersion for your audience as making your game look more presentable and will pay off in the long run. If you want to see more Unity Tutorials on game design art or Unity 3D subscribe to our social media channels.
What you are seeing is the top down view of the dungeon we designed. Notice the colors we used to set the mood.