Modelling a low poly model

In this post I’ll explain my work process when creating 3D assets for Pareidolia. I’ll be modeling a low poly M4 Sherman which will be used in the game later on.

The first step is finding references, luckily there are loads of photos and drawings of this tank online. Sometimes you’ll also find blueprint and turn around drawings of different vehicles which can be very handy.

Since I found a turn around drawing I can use it as a reference in the 3D software to get the shapes and sizes right.

Since we’re doing a low poly style game, I just want the largest and most recognizable shapes of the tank for the model. What makes the M4 recognizable is the compact size and round shapes

I’ll start on modeling the body, the kind of triangle looking shape. This is all just simple extrusion poly modeling. And there’s no need for any details yet.


With the main shape of the body done, we can start creating the tracks. There are lots of details on the tracks, but we’ll just focus on the large parts. The tracks themselves and the wheels inside. The tracks won’t move in game so we don’t have to rig them. We can just make them out of solid objects.

When looking at the references I noticed there are some protruding parts from the body covering the front of the tracs.

We also have to take a look at the back. According to the references it’s not completely flat, but protrudes a little upwards at the middle like this.

With the tracks and main body done, we can start on the turret. A cylinder seems like the right primitive for this. We also need enough polygons to get the round shape of the turret.

The gun itself is also made of cylinders
With the body, turret and tracks done, we can now add the final details to the model. There are some hatches at the front with a machine gun sticking out from under one of them. We can also add a door on the turret.

At last we can put some colors on our finished tank. The model is now ready to be exported into Unity.