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hannahbalesblog

Games Design @ Hull School of Art and Design

Date

April 25, 2016

Games Design – RPG Research Bibliography

The Last of Us Image 001

REVIEW: The Last of Us (Remastered)

The Last of Us Reviews 001

http://www.metacritic.com/game/playstation-3/the-last-of-us

The Last of Us Image 002

The Last of Us Ending: Breaking the Player Paradigm

The Last of Us Image 003

http://www.forbes.com/forbes/welcome/

The Last of Us Image 004

http://kotaku.com/5982646/the-last-of-us-has-a-series-and-it-looks-pretty-good

Bioshock Infinite Image 001

http://www.bioshockinfinite.com/?RET=media&ag=true

Bioshock Infinite Image 002

http://bioshock.wikia.com/wiki/Rosalind_Lutece

Bioshock Infinite Image 003

http://bioshock.wikia.com/wiki/Robert_Lutece

Bioshock Image 004

http://www.allwallpaper.in/rapture-bioshock-infinite-songbird-elizabeth-comstock-wallpaper-15054.html

Bioshock Infinite Image 005

http://www.btmreview.com/bioshock-infinite-review

Bioshock Infinite Image 006

http://guides.gamepressure.com/bioshock2/guide.asp?ID=9275

Far Cry 3 Image 001

http://store.steampowered.com/app/220240/

Far Cry 3 Image 002

Far Cry 3 Outsold Far Cry 4 Digitally on PS3; Here’s Why

Far Cry 3 Image 003

https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/off-topic-discussion/far-cry-3/63799/page1/

Tony Hawk Image 001

http://www.museumofplay.org/online-collections/22/52/109.11156

Tony Hawk Research 001

http://tonyhawkgames.wikia.com/wiki/Tony_Hawk’s_Game_Series

Tony Hawk Image 002

http://donkeynostalgia.blogspot.co.uk/2011/02/tony-hawks-pro-skater-3.html

Tony Hawk Image 003

http://getabandonware.com/review/tony-hawks-pro-skater-2/

Tony Hawk Image 004

http://getabandonware.com/review/tony-hawks-pro-skater-2/

Games Design – RPG Research

Role Playing Games are incredibly popular, most games feature Role-Playing. RPG’s are my favourite so I believe that it is a great way to be immersed within a game. An RPG (Role Playing Game) is when the player gets to play as a character in a game that goes on epic adventures, meets new people, fights enemies, explores new places and more; and to add to the list of opportunities you can also play online with other players or interact with an amazing storyline. Most games usually are better in one sector than the other for example ‘The Last of Us’ has been known for it’s amazing story but the gameplay hasn’t had the best of reviews whereas Skyrim has great gameplay but not a very long or good storyline.

Games with a Good Story

The Last of Us

The Last of Us 005

Known for its great storyline, The Last of Us has had so many good reviews. Released in 2013 by the Developers Naughty Dog the game was a smash hit. Below are just two of the great reviews:

Review 001Review 002

Also watch the Game Trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W01L70IGBgE

I have played some of the game and I must say it has such a good storyline mainly due to the way in which the characters interact. There are two main protagonists (Joel and Ellie).

********************SPOILERS*************************

The story starts with getting to know Joel. We find out that he has a daughter, but all of a sudden an apocalypse begins with people starting to go crazy (almost zombie-like). Unfortunatley Joel loses his daughter and the story moves on. We next see Joel with a new friend and to gain access to weapons they have a task to complete for a team called The Fireflies; this task is to take Ellie to the designated location and this is where the adventure begins. Throughout the game we see things happen to Ellie and Joel that scare us, make us happy, make us sad and make us angry, however, most of the game is a stealth game so I would also say that is a mechanic that adds to the storyline being more interesting. Also the game is well-known for its environment design. The first apocolyptic game to feature so many plants and wildlife. An example of this would be the finding of giraffes at a university.

Bioshock Infinite 

Bioshock Infinite 001.jpg

Another game released in 2013 which has such a crazy but good storyline. If you like games that make you think well this game will blow you mind. Although a lot people didn’t give it a chance considering Bioshock 1 & Bioshock 2 were quite repetitive the developers improved there game and made the story more interesting throughout. Even though there is a set storyline no one really knows some of the other little details that could either hint towards another game or reveal more of the story. Bioshock Infinite is clever in the way that it gives the player a chance to invent their own theory to the end of the game and as a community many people who liked this game came together to discuss how they feel the game makes sense.

From what I understand I believe that the game starts with you being in a rowing boat with two twins explaining to you your task. You stop near a lighthouse and in this lighthouse is a secret way of transportation into the city of Columbia (a floating city in the sky. See more here in my previous blog post: https://hannahbalesblog.wordpress.com/2015/10/12/games-design-character-design-2k-games-gavin-goulden/) Once in this city you explore and continue your task which is to find a girl of the name Elizabeth and bring her back. At the end of the game you find out that elizabeth is really your daughter from an alternate universe kind of. I say kind of because within this game there are so many universes. Within one part of the game elizabeth explains it as there are constants and variables (constants which are events that happen in every world and variables which are events that can have multiple outcomes). As an example throughout the game series the environment consists of a unique environment such as underwater and Columbia in the sky also you have the antagonist that is really a protagonist in this case a Big Daddy or Songbird and then you have Booker and Jack, multiple Elizabeth’s and the main antagonist. Same events but different outcomes. Elizabeth “You. Me. Songbird. Columbia. Sometimes things are different, yet the same.”

Watch this video for a more in depth description and be careful it contains a lot of spoilers.

 

Bioshock Infinite 003Bioshock Infinite 002

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bioshock Infinite 005

Bioshock Infinite 004

 

 

 

 

 
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Games with Good Gameplay (controls – character or vehicle)

Far Cry 3

Far Cry 001.jpg

The story for Far Cry 3 is quite repetitive, however, it is known for it’s bad guy as many people really liked Vaas. I really like the gameplay as the character is easy to control and so are all of the vehicles. Having a wide range of vehicles is great and later on in the game you get a flying suit which is a huge life saver. My favourite method of transportation is the hang glider as it is easy to control and you can travel quite far quite quickly, although it takes a while to get the hang of landing the vehicle I finally managed.

The controls are  basic and by basic I mean they are controls you would already assume; for example (If playing via Xbox) most games consider ‘B’ as Crouch, ‘A’ as Jump and ‘X’ as Reload, these are the controls Far Cry 3 uses. I also like the way in which the Far Cry game series keeps the controls consistent throughout.

Tony Hawk Games (Pro Skater 2)

Tony Hawk 001.jpg

All of the Tony Hawk games are great and you either learn all of the tricks or button bash; either way the game is still fun. Anyone new to the game can learn how to play within 5 mins of gameplay as it is that easy. that is why the game is called pro skater (the more you play the better you get). Tony Hawk has got 15 skateboarding games (not including remakes) and the more popular they got the better as he even got to feature celebrity friends such as Bam Margera, the game series has lasted between 1999 and 2015. I love the game as you could free roam, do missions and complete challenges. The customization was great but overall the controls are so simplistic and I love that.

Games with Good User Interface

Please find below the link to one of my posts from my blog. This post is about game with a good user interface.

https://hannahbalesblog.wordpress.com/2016/01/05/games-design-user-interface-and-user-experience/

Creative Futures -An Intro to Production Design/Games Design

The Games Design Industry is growing more and more each day. Games are getting better and more people seem interested in playing games even the female audience are starting to dominate the online servers. With currently studying to be a Games Designer I am mainly interested in the art sector of the Games Design industry, my favourite job would be a 3D Designer; mainly working on environments and objects.

Roles within the Games Design industry:

  • Creator
  • Developer (Rocksteady, Rockstar, Lionhead, 2K Games etc.)
  • Director (Game Director, Studio Director, Art Director, Audio Director, Technical Director etc.)
  • Producers (Senior Producers, Art Producers, Associate Producers etc.)
  • Animators (Lead Animator, Motion Capture, Technical Animator etc.)
  • Environment Artist
  • Concept Artist
  • Front-end Artist
  • Asset Artist
  • Lighting Artist
  • Technical Artist
  • Special Effects
  • Audio Programmer
  • Sound Designer
  • Character Artist
  • Cinematic Director
  • Level Designer
  • Narrative Designer
  • Designer
  • Marketing Game Manager
  • Community Manager
  • AI Programmer
  • Engine Programmer
  • Player Programmer
  • I.T Director
  • Desktop & OP Support Specialist
  • Finance Manager
  • Office Manager
  • Human Resource Manager
  • Office Assistant & Receptionist
  • Production Assistant
  • Lead Quality Assurance
  • Quality Assurance Testers
  • Outsource Partners
  • Engine Programmer
  • Character Concept
  • Special Thanks
  • Company Babies
  • Art Team
  • Developer Relations & Management
  • Production Administrator
  • Certification
  • Development
  • Coordinator
  • Usability Manager
  • First Party Operations
  • Talent Relations
  • PR Representative
  • PR Manager
  • Country Sales
  • Trade Marketing
  • Sales Planning & Analysis
  • Distribution
  • Deputy General Counsel
  • Worldwide Operations
  • Regional Office
  • Sound Designer
  • ADR Mixer
  • Sound Editor
  • Foley Artist
  • Story Writers
  • Voice Over Actors
  • Sound Engineer
  • Composer
  • Sound Engineer
  • Dialogue
  • Composition
  • Music Orchestration and Conductor
  • Music Preparation
  • Score Coordinator
  • Cutscene Re-recording Mixer
  • Creatives (Officer, Interactive, Associate)
  • President
  • Publishers
  • Business Development
  • Business Development
  • Business & Legal Affairs
  • Franchise Management

I think that some roles in industries such as this clash and some end up doing similar sort of tasks. I think that this is a good thing as there is more chance of working as a team as well as reassuring that everything in production is up to standards.

When reviewing the job roles for Games Design most of these roles can also be used in the films industry such as Voice Over Actors, Sound Editors and Country Sales as an example, however, I have been tasked to research ‘Entertainment Media’, ‘Production Design’ and ‘Art Director’.

The term ‘Entertainment Media’ is the format in which the product has been released e.g. Film, Book, CD, DVD etc. In our case we have our games on disc and even sometimes as a digital download.

‘Production Designers’ are in charge of design obviously. They are what decides on the styles, themes and aesthetics of the media; whether it be a film, music video or game.

An ‘Art Director’ may seem similar to a production designer but it is not. An art director is in charge of the art department and what goes on there. They will decide on what artwork to use and what to change.

Creative Futures – Perspective Drawing

Perspective Drawing is quite new to me as I have always drawn everything free-hand, however once I started to draw using perspective it really helped me to understand how 3D objects should actually look.

Perspective 005

  1. Here is my first attempt (Image above). Gareth taught us this method so that we could create buildings or crates; I like this technique because if you always draw this step by step and get it right the box created will always be even, however I found it quite difficult to understand how to get the shape and the size of the box that I wanted; therefore I attempted more.

Perspective 0062. Here I tried to create a bigger (less slim) building sort of shape. The black pen was my first try, however I wanted to try a different view so I used the red pen to try and get a larger and lower perspective. Unfortunately I made some mistakes in doing this so I tried again.

Perspective 004

3. This try was okay but I still was looking for a shape that resembled the average building. The more and more I repeated this technique the more I learnt. At this stage I knew I was getting closer to the shape I was looking for.

Perspective 003

4. This attempt was much better, as I managed to create more of a cube rather than a really thin top and a really large base such as the previous one.

Perspective 007

5. Finally I am really pleased with how this attempt went as it is in the shape of an average building, however you can see the use of perspective in this as seen in the image below.Prespective Building 001

6. As I liked my final design I decided to take it into photoshop and turn the cube into an actual building to show my intentions.

Perspective 001

7. I like this sort of perspective, however, I feel that my house and fences look quite flat. If I was to improve this I would attempt making everything a bit more 3D as the reason for perspective is to make your work more realistic and 3D.

Perspective 002

8. This method is similar to the previous (no. 7) however, instead of drawing objects on the side I decided to draw a road going into the distance from the bottom. This isn’t my favourite method as I think that the road disappears too quickly. It would look better with a wider road and more detail.

 

Creative Futures – Graphics Design (Shop Fronts/Signs)

Living in Hull we have a wide variety of cultures and personalities; I suppose that is what makes Hull quite unique as together as a community we focus on making Hull a better place (or in other terms a ‘City of Culture’). Like any other city Hull has its advantages and disadvantages and by looking at the information below I can prove this.

Advantages

  • ‘The cost of living is around 40% lower than the national average’ – http://www.hullcc.gov.uk/portal/page?_pageid=293,722107&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL
  • ‘Hull is at the heart of Europe and trades with the rest of the world’ – http://www.hullcc.gov.uk/portal/page?_pageid=293,722119&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL
  • ‘Chip Spice is also another variation, which origninated in Kingston Upon Hull’ – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seasoned_salt
  • ‘A thriving ferry terminal that has the world’s largest passenger ferries’ – http://www.hullcc.gov.uk/portal/page?_pageid=293,722115&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL
  • Hull has ‘the longest single-span suspension bridge in Britain’ – https://uk.news.yahoo.com/hull-uk-city-of-culture–best-things-landmarks-humber-tourism-121548412.html

Disadvantages

Well it seems I don’t exactly have to post a few disadvantages as this next link just shows what people think, open up this link to find out what disadvantages some people believe Hull holds. http://www.knowhere.co.uk/Hull/East-Riding-of-Yorkshire/Northern-England/info/worstthings

One disadvantage that interested me was this quote ‘The dingy boarded up shops’. Currently in Hull we have a large problem which is the construction. If you are not aware Hull is having a major make-over; most of the paths and roads have been dug up so that we have a brand new nice-looking town by 2017 (Hull City of Culture), however the construction is not due to be completed until at least 2018 or 2019. Recently it has been all over the news and social media that this construction is causing all sorts of problems and one of them being shops not able to stay in business as they are losing customers. Not many people want to visit Hull any more.Eden.jpg

Here is just one of the shops shutting down due to these reasons. The owners of Eden stated to the Hull Daily Mail that they have had a 50% reduction in footfall since the construction. Considering the shop from the front looks quite advertising this comes to a surprise to everyone even popular shops such as Brooks, Mootch and The Tea Shop are struggling for business.

Links:

http://www.hulldailymail.co.uk/Eden-shop-Hull-city-centre-close-street-works/story-29065337-detail/story.html

http://www.hulldailymail.co.uk/City-centre-work-killing-Hull-traders-say-shops/story-29002714-detail/story.html

For our Creative Futures project our task is to look at the graphics of a selection of shops then describe and explain why they look like that, what their business is and do people shop there?

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Although this sign is rather large most people either don’t know that it is there or have troubles getting to it. I have been myself and I must admit it can get quite busy, however a bit of colour may have helped this sign although it does light up on a night (useful for when customers want to go for a nice evening meal. The font is quite smart and easy to read, maybe could be improved by adding a space in between the two words and also maybe adding the logo so people know what it is instantly.

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When doing our research we came across this little restaurant. I have never heard of or seen it before, however they have an advertising menu in the front window and a graphics design to match the style of the place. From here it looks quite small but it does extend quite far (not able to see at this moment in time due to construction). The construction actually helped in this case as I was looking for which way to go I came across it.

The theme is consist throughout based on ‘Old Grandad’s Shed’ according to their Website as the place is full of interesting objects such as old typewriters, an old diving mask and the odd garden equipment. The sign out front has a washed out green/blue coloured painted wood which already indicates an ‘old shed’ sort of style also I find that most American Steakhouses use this sort of style as people find it unique and interesting. The font is quite smart I see this as a representation of the grandad; old (the washed out wood) with a great personality that lasts forever (the paint) and smart, filled with plenty of knowledge and adventurous (the font). Also during the night time I believe that the sign will look quite nice with the lights above shinging on it.

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Unlike the other two images Kapow! has a slogan and a website which I see as an advantage as it encourages the customer to look online as well as instore. I am a really big fan of this shop as it is great for all your retro favourites; featuring merchandise from classics such as ‘FraggleRock’, ‘Wacky Races’, ‘Looney Tunes’, ‘The Goonies’, ‘Batman’, ‘The Blues Brothers’ and more. Even though the store sells all of this cool stuff I feel that the sign lets it down. It is an interesting sign compared to others, but I think an image of something retro or a bit more colour could possible improve the quality of the store front. I do however like the way in which the word Kapow draws your attention, with the word Kapow being written in comic books we all know from common knowledge that words like ‘bang’, ‘pow’ and ‘kapow’ are loud ways of showing someone being hit without the violence so in our heads that word automatically shouts out to us they way we see it in comics.America 001.jpg

Studio 1-West – Orlando, Kissimee

No longer in Hull I have expanded my search to Orlando, Florida, Kissimee. The reason I chose to research this area of America is because I have been here several times down this same street and all of the shops stand out incredibly compared to Hull. First of all the shops are more spread out which gives the owner more of an opportunity to expand on the design. Here for example this whole shop has been Americanised. This shop is very patriotic, however, I feel that the only downfall is with shops like this is the fact that this shop as an example does not sell patriotic items such as the American flag or presidential merchandise it sells a large quantity of Disney products with being quite close to the Disney parks (non-official Disney products) and also the typical tourist merchandise such as t-shirts with funny slogans.

The reason the store uses this graphic design style is to draw people in, some of the stores in this area are completely honest and advertise on simply selling cheap items as that appeals great to British tourists as we like a good deal and have most likely run out of money due to being at the Disney Parks and paying their prices. Even though the store isn’t very patriotic on the inside I must say that I have found some great deals and great items in there; and the graphics was one of the reasons I wanted to go there beacause the bold blue and red from the American flag stands out perfectly.

America 002.jpg

Magic Castle Gift Kingdom – Orlando, Kissimee

Here is one of my favourite stores ever for graphics design. At first glance I would assume that this was either a magic shop or a costume shop, although it really is a gift shop. Again similar to the previous image, it is using graphics to persuade people to come inside their store. Also if you look closely they have the tactic of cover the windows with prices and sales so that we have to look inside to see what it sells. Stores with this type of style draw in the attention of children espicially. I like the way that the wizard covers most of the building from left to right; my eyes travel from left to right and I view the whole thing with interest. I would say the colours are a bit faded but we have to take this into consideration as in England we don’t have the warm weather in which they do, therefore the sun fades some of the colours away. To describe it briefly I would say colourful and quirky.

America 003.jpg

Gala Gifts – Orlando, Kissimee

Another one similar to the above, however this one doesn;’t have any typography. They have only placed the typography onto the sign outside (meant for people in cars to view). In a way that is a good idea but all of these places just seem to be named a ‘Gift shop’ but after doing my research I found out the real names (as you can see from above this one is called ‘Gala Gifts’.I like the way in which they use cartoon, friendly animals to again persuade children to drag their parents into the store. Also I like the design on the roof as they haven’t just focused on the object they have actually fully painted the roof also.

America 004.jpg

Cici’s Pizza and Bonanza Golf – Orlando, Kissimee

This place was right next to my hotel and I must say it was very popular. Seeing a golf course on a mountain looks cool, fun and adventurous and even though the main name Bonanza isn’t included on the mountain, just adding the one word golf makes it easy for people to know what it is. Simple is always key. My main worry is the font and colour of the text. I feel that orange blends in with the mountain way to much and should be maybe blue or green, however with a waterfall at either side I think that is what makes the typography stand out. As well as having the golf sign they also have an advertisement for cars to see as they go past, this on the other hand has the full name of the place; still I would find these American Store more interesting if they had logos.

Practically next door (almost colliding with the golf place) is Cici’s Pizza. This place is awesome as it sells so many unique pizzas and it also has pizza puddings (e.g. pizza apple slices). My only concern would be that it is quite hidden as it only has it’s advertisement on the board outside along with the other ads and it is similar to the gift shop at the golf centre (Cici’s on the left next to Bonanza Golf Sign and Golf Gift Shop on the right). Even though it is such a nice place it doesn’t have the graphics behind it to support it.

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TD Bank – New York

I chose to look at New York next as it is a great place for advertisement obviously. This building isn’t as extravagant as the some of the next ones you will see but I chose it as it is very repetitive giving the customer to view the sign all the way down the street. It has four of the same signs all on one side of the building as well as other little advertisements around it. The design is simple but the colour stands out great and is quite smart and simplistic, overall I just think it is a unique way of advertising.

America 006.jpg

 Times Square – New York 

Advertisements and shop fronts everywhere. Times Square is know for it’s graphics design using digital and non-digital advertisements and shop fronts. This area is mainly full of top brands such as McDonald’s and The Disney Store, I like the way in which some shops don’t even have to have their name anywhere as they are so popular that they just use there logo. In films a lot of these shops pay to get their store featured in the movie. I can imagine a property in this area would cost quite a lot.

America 008

Times Square – New York

I like the Shop front for this ‘Toys ‘R’ Us’ Store as they have their genuine logo/font over the doorway yet use the whole of the store windows to not advertise what is inside their store unlike other places but to advertise upcoming merchandise for a new children’s film. Seeing this as a store front is incredible as I can’t imagine seeing such a large method of attracting customers like this in Hull and if so it won’t be the best of advertisements.

America 009

New York

Finally I chose to write about the Radio City Music Hall. The main reason I decided to write about this is because the hall uses old techniques rather than new to attract customers. The old fashioned unique lights in those particular fonts screams retro to anyone that walks past. Also you can tell this place is successful just by looking at how many people are interested in this attraction. I really like the way that they have used more than one font. In most cases you can’t usually get away with this, however in this case the font is what makes this place so stylish. The colours used are great as the red and blue are contrasting and the gold is a really nice gentle touch as a background.

Overall I believe that other countries have a great use of graphics design whereas Hull occasionally has some good designs but most shops are ruined due to criminals using graffiti or tools to ruin signs. With Hull being a small city compared to New York I feel that New York is more of a popular tourist destination and therefore needs more designs and development.

 

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