Game Boy

Prop Breakdown

Oday Abuzaeed


Oday Abuzaeed

Environment Artist


3D Environment Artist focused on game development with a strong interest in creating environments and detailed props for modern games standards.


This was a part of a course I am giving at Nayzak  Animation School. My main goal was to show my students how to make a detailed model with a realistic look. Making the board wasn’t in my plan at first but my students were so keen to make that transparent look.

For software

I mainly used blender 2.79 for modeling, UV, animation and rendering.
I use Substance Painter for baking and texturing.
I also use Zbrush to add geometry details.

References/ Inspiration

The main inspiration was  John Harris’ project
so I gathered tons of Hi-rez reference images that describe both form and surface details as well as the imperfections that you can find on the Gameboy as well as the electronic boards.


I was trying to achieve a balance between geometry details and texture details so most of the edges are fairly beveled for details mainly used the knife tools and tried to preserve topology flow and avoid Ngons.


I just added the big main details such as line strips and holes and you could skip this step as you could add it later while texturing.



UVing is one of the steps I enjoy most, I just ad seams (red edges) to separate the body into sections (front, top, bottom and both back and sides are in one UV Island) and the batteries placed was UV separately as well as the cartage and the battery itself.

While the boards were done on another texture set just plane and mapped from an image.


Was done in substance painter with default sittings just with explode method witch each sub-model is renamed with Suffix ” _Low” and  “_High” and separated from each other.


At this stage, I wanted to add all the details I saw in the references in my model so I give more attention to the colour channel and roughness channel to make the readability of the model easier by highlighting the edges and cavities, sharpening the dirt, add micro normal and surface details and usually.

I finalize my texturing by adding the curvature map on the top layer stack with the overlay blending mode and lowering its intensity a bit just to give crisp contrast and highlight the edges.

And for the screen, I used a fake shadow and AO to give the feeling of layered geometry for the screen.
For the screws, I used a tool I developed for that


I rendered my project in Blender Eevee engine, for shading I just did 3 things:

  • For the gameplay video, I just made the video with a separate UV channel for the screen only and added to an emission shader and blend it with the original screen texture just to give an effect to it.
  • The screen (extra sauce to spice things up) so I wanted to mimic the pixel look of the screen so I made an RGB pixel image and multiply it with the video to achieve that pixel effect and I tiled the pixel image to give me the exact number of pixels of the game boy screen (160×144) (too nerdy I Know :D).
  • In the transparent shader, I used a light path node to speed up the glass shader and make it faster to render and also give me the thick look around the edges.

Lighting & Rendering

It was pretty straightforward forward just used a suitable HDRI from HDRI haven and hit render but before I enabled AO, screen-space reflections and bloom.



Thank you for reading, please feel free to visit my Portfolio or ask me any questions!