Originally posted by arran
it would be good to hear any advice for working on game characters as well.
Mike would be the best man for that, but from what I learned on my 8 monh stint on an Indie Project, was if a texture can do the job don't model it. The eyes for example can be part of a facial texture, so there is little need to go into mass detail on the face, save the poly count for something else.
If you have Steam and own HL2 get the SDK and have a look at some of the models (7,000+ polycounts), the textures are great and if you have XSI you can import them for a more detailed look. Modelling for games is all about limitation and your budget. How many polys we can spend on each main character? How many polys we can spend oneach secondary character? How many polys the engine will allow on screen at anyone time? the list is endless. But hey thats why Art Directors get paid the big bucks :p