Modular Environmental Art for Game Artists

Learn the secrets of environmental game art by using a modular workflow. You’ll learn everything you need to know to create effective modular environments in quick succession – everything from use-cases, snapping, quick modifier techniques, transitional UV unwrapping, setup, and more!

Professional Game Workflow

All the modeling and UV mapping will be done in 3ds Max and textures will be created using Substance Designer. We’ll be using Unreal Engine 4, along with a tiny bit of Photoshop for our scene set-up. We’ll take you through the entire process from start to finish.

13 Hours of quality game art training

This course contains just under 13 hours of content and you can follow along with every single step. The course does include a few small, time-lapses, this is only to speed up very repetitive tasks, the rest is done in real-time.

We will start by creating a blockout using 3ds Max and Unreal Engine to get a sense of scale and composition, after that we will start to create our final models along with all the textures needed.

From Blockout to Final Models

We will replace our blockout with the brand-new final models and textures and then we will spend the rest of our time on lighting, composition, and general scene improvement. Finally, we will finish this tutorial off by creating some additional assets (this will be done part time-lapse), before ending up with the striking scene as shown in the images. The plants in the final image are premade free assets from the Unreal Engine Marketplace.


This course is perfect for students who have some familiarity with 3ds Max, Substance Designer, and Unreal Engine 4. Everything in this tutorial will be explained in detail. If you have never touched Substance Designer before we recommend that you first watch our Intro series on the software.


  • 3ds Max (all versions)
  • Substance Designer 2020
  • Unreal Engine 4
  • Photoshop (for color balancing only)


Emiel Sleegers is a senior environment artist currently working in the AAA Game Industry. He’s worked on games like The Division 2 + DLC at Ubisoft, Forza Horizon 3 at Playground Games, and as a Freelancer on multiple projects as an Environment Artist and Material Artist. He is currently working right here at FlippedNormals as a Senior 3D Artist.


There’s a total of 38 videos split into easy-to-digest chapters.

01 – Going over our Reference
02-07 – Creating Our blockout Assets – 3ds Max
08-11 – Setting up our scene in Unreal Engine – UE4
12-19 – Turning our blockout models into final assets – 3ds Max
20 – UV Unwrapping our models – 3ds Max
21-25 – Creating our textures – Substance Designer
26-28 – Doing our first lighting pass – UE4
29-31 – Composition and scene improvements – 3ds Max+ UE4
32-34 – Creating additional assets – all programs
35-36 – Creating our statue – 3ds Max
37-38 – Final Scene Polish – all programs


Average rating: 4.67 out of 5 stars
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  • Really Good

    This is not the first tutorial I’ve done by Emiel, I really like the way he goes about things, not afraid to show how the thought process changes as production goes on. There’s some great techniques in here and it makes tackling these larger environments a lot less daunting.

    Just some things people should know: There are two time lapse videos where he makes the sofas and some of the smaller props, not an issue for me but for someone more beginner it might impact. I am a Maya user and other than the statue towards the end I had no problems following along, so I imagine if you use Blender or basically anything other than 3Ds Max you should do alright if you already have a bit of modeling know-how.

    Overall, really good tutorial, straight forward, easy to understand and a really good jumping off point for people to start getting into their own modular environment workflows.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Definately could polish this tutorial a bit but otherwise learned a lot

    I am quite proficient with unreal and substance painter already so this tutorial was amazing for learning 3DSMAX. He’s got some great techniques for setting up snapping for the models to work well in unreal. He also UV’d 17 modular pieces at the same time which I thought was impossible. However I find the only way to follow these tutorials is to copy them exactly on my end, which is hard when the guy is constantly changing his mind and going back and editing things. Also it would have been nice to see the FBX export settings you used in 3DSMAX, because my 3DSMAX was exporting stuff in inches which totally messed up Unreal until I realized what was going on.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Finally

    Please make more mirror edge stuff not many people do more art like that. I like the simplicity and stylization of it. I simply love the art. If you make more I will gobble them up but anyway looked around the scene pretty nice.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful.

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