For builders - how important is symmetry to you?


#1

For the 6-7 years of the 8 years I’ve been on Roblox, I have mostly only exposed myself to the programming side of Roblox. Occasionally, now and then, I’ll build, but I lack confidence in my builds. My builds either look like something slapped together on a Build to Survive game or far too detailed-looking that I can’t match that same style on other days. One main problem I have with building is symmetry and that’s especially a topic for me because I’m trying to create a science fiction research facility of sorts.

How important is symmetry and should I worry about it as much as I do? I often have fears like, “my ceiling lights aren’t in equal increments between each other and the walls, it’ll look weird now” (example included below). I am attempting to build a science fiction research facility of sorts.

Example of lights:

Notice how if I add another light at the right-side, it’ll be cut off, therefore I don’t include a light and then there’s a huge gap. That’s what I don’t want, but I don’t know if it’s a huge deal or not.

Worries like this often make me over-stretch hallways or make lights look abnormal which to me is just as bad as asymmetrical placement.


#2

Completely depends on the build and style. Personally I try my best to keep things symmetrical, I actually have a calculator beside me if I’m doing more complex styles so I can calculate the amount of offset/sizes on certain parts to make sure everything lines up… I wouldn’t worry to much about it though. Nothing can be made 100% perfect all the times, my biggest issue is trying to line up the ceiling tiles/floor tiles but that’s hard without a texture offset (which I hope Roblox adds in the future…)


#3

It depends on what I’m building, that’s literally it.


#4

If I’m building something symmetrical, symmetry is of course crucial.

If I’m building a room, I don’t care about the symmetry that much if it isn’t necessary. But if I want to put the lights in even distances to each other and walls, I totally will.
But it all depends on the room itself and how I want it to look like, how it’s designed.

I always use math to maintain symmetry, I don’t just place things “by hand” so it looks symmetrical. I always use properties or grid placement, to know that everything is calculated and placed correctly.

To the light example, I would just keep (or remove, if deemed right) that one part, and then calculate how to replace it so they’re all evenly placed out.


#5

Symmetry is very important to me. However, there are exceptions in certain building themes, such as terrain & landscapes, those are very unpredictable and can be toyed around in whatever manners wanted.

Luckily, symmetry can be maintained using a special plugin. You build the half of the model, then use it. Afterwards, reduce the part count. If I want to remove a little symmetry, just edit it normally.

Oh, speaking of placements of lights, I’ll offset it in some way. If I want complete symmetry, I basically use math to handle the job, which can be quite heavy to handle.


#6

It depends on what your art style is.

In my opinion, it’s way more easier to both build and model symmetrically, especially in 3D Modeling.
Due to my OCD, I tend to batter my work to be symmetrical a lot; fantasy and “cute” themed models aren’t so symmetrical when I create them, this is to help enhance the cartoon fantasy environment the models help to procreate.

Check out this boat for example.


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Notice how it looks more cuter and in a way - more detailed - while it’s not symmetrical and rather a bit curved and bent like that. It helps to focus on the game’s said art style of fantasy and being cute.

So, the answer to your question is pretty simple, but complex at the same time: it all depends on what your art style is.

It should be cool to note, that Roblox has come to a point where it now hosts different art styles, rather than it’s basic default once we’ve had for a long time, thus labeling Roblox more and more as a platform.


#7

Well to me, it’s about personalities. I build with the grid on and when I started I used bricks to measure things. Very inefficient but my OCD kicks in when something isn’t the way I wanted.
Also I read something about the symmetrical shapes were more appealing to the human eyes but I enjoy low poly so… that logic is dumb.


#8

Psychologically, people like things to be symmetrical. It comes down to how we love order in things even if those things are inherently chaotic, almost all people have a form of apophenia that makes symmetrical things really light up our brains.

So with that in mind you can really play with people’s heads with your buildings. I like to add face-shaped models to builds that I want the player to feel like they’re being watched, or have a symmetrical building in an asymmetric surrounding to making the building really contrast and stand out, think like a forest to be asymmetric with an eerie obelisk in the middle. People would gravitate towards the obelisk because it looks important.

What I like to do is start a build with everything symmetrical and as I dive deeper into the style, I add or remove areas to make things asymmetric as I see fit. An example would be how I made Aymor’s rig in Egg hunt 2018:

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Even though the head itself is symmetrical, the texture is not with the scar across the eye and the hat tilted. It just adds more of a “this guy is evil” kind of look.

And play around with styles and find a balance, I made that head at least four times to get it right. Don’t think you can get away with one-and-done developing haha :wink:


#9

Not much of a builder, but if I’m trying to build something where symmetry is sort of implied, like in your ceiling lights, it would drive me crazy to not have it be exactly symmetrical. To the point where I painfully make the simple script to do the sizing and spacing perfectly for my needs. If the room is like 33.4 x 66.8, o boy, I’m gonna need to make the ceiling tiles symmetrical with scripts.


#10

Try to use round numbers when you can :slight_smile: makes things a LOT easier


#11

What I do when this happen to me I usually space them out more or don’t do them in a strait line (as shown in the image) and if what your building is a realistic style you can say in real life not everything is perfect (old style building) but on the new style building it is important for symmetry. If I where you I would not worry to much about the fixtures symmetry and deal with it when I get to it because you can plan ahead for the structure symmetry like the flooring but you don’t have to because you can divide the space and see what you are left with to work.


#12

Personally, it’s not really a matter of how truly symmetrical it is, but rather how symmetrical it looks. Like, in terms of my build’s true symmetry, it’s absolutely terrible and horrendously unclean when you go into studio and look at each part. But when you just look at it and analyze it, it doesn’t appear unclean.

My personal rule of building is if it looks ok, it’s probably fine (excluding collision issues).


#13

Try telling that to me lol
I recently saw two images that didn’t have perfectly centered object in it by only 1 and 2 pixels, but I still could see it’s not in the exact middle :laughing:
It sure disturbed me


#14

Symmetry evokes the sense of balance, unity, and usually makes people feel more relaxed.
Asymmetry is often associated with chaos and unsurity.

It depends on what “feel” you want for your game. For example, a horror game might want to use asymmetric features while a roleplay game would work best using symmetric builds.


#15

Personally, I can’t stand whenever I see certain floorings or patterns that have a slight offset off of the other.
Usually what I do to fix this, is create a loop and copy and paste that over until I have my desired length/size.
After that, I scale the first loop to match everything in it’s entirety so I can remove all of the other parts I used for the loop.

Slightly time consuming, yes, but there is another alternative.

Increments! You can take a 1x1x1 “Part”, copy that, set your increment to 1
(or even 10, depending on how big the distance is) and drag it over to the point where you think your model/part should end.
Using standard parts as reference point can help a lot in symmetry.


#16

In that situation, yes, it should be symmetrical. Move the lights you’ve already placed to be centered with the wall, if you can’t change their size for some reason.

I use cmdutl to help me centre things.


#17

I do make things symmetrical the best I can when I build, but I don’t use calculators and math and stuff (Unless I can do it in my head, then I might)

Instead, I use bricks to line stuff up. For example, I can put a brick in between lights 1 & 2, resize it to fit between then, and then move it to be by light 2. Now when I add light 3, I’ll know the precise distance to put it at. It’s hard to explain without pictures,but I’m on my phone so.

I also made a plugin specifically for centering parts and models on top of stuff. Heh.


#18

Symmetry is very important just depending on what you’re building and how you’re doing it.

For example, if you’re building something medieval-like you probably wouldn’t expect too much symmetry if it’s something like a house. You would see something much more symmetrical for futuristic and potentially modern* items like skyscrapers or futuristic jets.

It can be very hard trying to replicate stuff on one side to the other doing it the first time, but it isn’t all that hard if you have a planned and structured strategy doing it which makes it worthwhile, and making symmetry essential overall.