Below are some examples of the photographs I was able to take;
These initial reference photographs weren't intended as reference for the modelling stage but instead to highlight the richness of detail at the circuit on and off the track, from the wealth of racing oriented props to planes and helicopters flying overhead from the adjacent airport to racers preparing their bikes/ karts in the pit areas.
These first reference images were a great starting point to begin developing the visual style of my project. Also, with it being the summer, the conditions were perfect to describe the atmosphere and conditions I'd ideally like to achieve during the game-play.
Firstly, using satellite images from Google Earth I constructed a circuit diagram to describe scale, the playable area and the level of detail likely to be used throughout the level.
Below is my circuit diagram to scale;
Only the part of the map highlighted in red below will be explorable using the vehicle;
Level of detail;
The heat map below describes the amount of detail contained within the environment in relation to polygon counts and texture budgets etc.
Visual Style and Game-play;
The game should be visually accurate and realistic to the real-world location but should be strong and vibrant similar to the notable games above giving it a wow factor and grabbing the players attention. The game-play should be less simulated than some of the above games with a slight arcade feel so that the game is easy to pick up and is quickly enjoyable and fun to play.
The diagram below best describes my aim for visual style and game-play in relation to other notable games;
From this I began to put together some quick concepts intended to highlight what's described above, the visual style my project including lighting, weather conditions, and colour palette etc.
Below; screenshot concepts of how the game should look during gameplay;