TREAD: Hard Surface Asset Creation for Video Games

Chunck Trafagander

Get a grip on hard surface modeling and the complete game asset workflow.

TREAD takes us on a ride through the entire workflow of hard surface asset creation, from start to finish line. 

We'll explore how we can harness modifiers and non-destructive modeling techniques in Blender to design complex models with relative ease. We will discover some tools to help us create efficient UV unwraps which will also play a critical role in clean, high quality textures. Using Substance Painter, we will generate those textures which will bring life into our model. Finally, we will look at importing our game-ready asset into Unreal Engine and set up a material using our texture maps.

The techniques explored in TREAD will provide a universal basis for tackling any future hard surface modeling, and build a foundation for understanding the game asset pipeline in its entirety.

Get Caught Up

Are you brand new to Blender?

These courses should help you get up to speed in no time.

Course Overview

Chapter 1


We'll start by creating the "high-poly" version of our model, taking the time to model out the important details that will increase the realism and believability of our asset. Once we've crafted our high-quality model, we will spend some time developing a lower-polygonal version which will serve as the game-ready asset.

Chapter 2


Before we can start texturing our model, we need to provide our model with a UV Map. This process will involve strategically adding "UV Seams" to our model so that the software knows how to properly "unwrap" it for texturing. 

Chapter 3


Texturing is the best way to bring life into a 3D model, and convey the type of environment your model could inhabit. This chapter will explore texture baking and creation using Substance Painter, a 3D texture painting application used professionally in productions for film and video games.

Chapter 4


Back in Blender, we will discover how we can generate high quality renders for our game asset using simple but effective lighting setups and backdrops. Blender makes it easy for us to capture top-notch renders for our assets which could be used for portfolio renders, or other image-based assets for a game.

Chapter 5

Importing into Unreal Engine

Finally, we'll cover how we can import our game-ready asset into Unreal Engine, and set up a material to display the textures we had created. 

Let's get rolling with hard surface, game asset creation!

Start Course

Get this course and 252 others by joining CG Cookie

Awarded upon completion:
100xp +
Course Curriculum
2 Reviews
  • A
    Matt Sutton(Altire) ·

    Thanks for this course, you guys have done a great job. I've got a fair amount of experience with modelling, but have really struggled to piece together a real, working and feasible workflow for creating game assets. I've watched countless hours of YouTube videos to try to get an understanding of this, but nothing gives a complete picture and everyone seems to have completely different methodologies! It's quite frustrating creating models of assets and exporting them into Unreal, only to find the texturing is completely off. 

    This course has finally given me the information I've needed, and as a beginner, I now feel like I have enough information to create game assets, and improve my skills... even if I am having to regularly refer back to the videos for help!

    Definitely recommend this course for anyone in a similar position.

    • author Wes Burke(wesburke) ·

      Thank you Matt, and I'm happy the course has helped along the way. Excited to see what game assets you created and happy Blending!

  • G
    'Guest' ·

    going into this with some experience i still learned alot. The instructor teaches many useful techniques and tricks.

    I rate this course 5 stars for these reason. It does use substance painter which is a plus for me as someone who wants to have the skills of a texture artist. 

    Great course highly recommend it