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Games Design @ Hull School of Art and Design

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Environment

Game Theory – 1.1 – What Makes Games Interesting?

There are many reasons why we play games from design to mechanics. Below I explore what makes game interesting (in both digital and non-digital context) looking at environments, characters, story lines, graphics, game mechanics and popular game franchises.

Story lines

A lot of games are well known for their story lines, characters and environments can impact the story, however I believe it is the game mechanic ‘Ownership’ that makes us feel the way we feel when playing video games.

The Last of Us

Image result for The Last of Us banner image

Image Source: http://telkomgaming.co.za/the-last-of-us-remastered/

This game is incredibly well-known for its intense story line, incredible environments and immersive interactivity. In 2014 the game won a BAFTA games award for the story along with many other awards including awards for audio, performance and best game of the year. The story is intense and features many sections to get your heart racing which may include jump scares and dark/spooky environments. The game is fun, however I believe we don’t play it for fun; I believe that we play it to find out more and more of the story as we go along (purely for curiosity) and to see the relationship of both characters grow. Most recent games are almost always featuring a companion which also adds to the story as you get to know them along your journey and then something intense/dramatic will happen therefore affecting the players feelings.

The Bioshock Game Series

Image result for bioshock infinite banner

Image Source: http://savegameonline.com/c2-reviews/bioshock-infinite-will-the-circle-be-unbroken

This game series is very consistent, I do find that the game can be boring when doing repetitive fetch quests, however, when the quest links more towards the main story line it gets rather interesting as the game is clever in which you can depict what is actually happening; by this I mean the game is so confusing that there are many ways that you can depict the ending and even parts of the story. Some of the story line has been set in stone, but the games complexity is what makes it so interesting. I have played Bioshock Infinite about 3 times now just so I can understand and wrap my head around the main story line, I’ve even looked at the DLC’s in relation to how they fit into the main story line. Most of the game mechanics stay the same, the only thing that technically changes is the constants and variables which is explained in the main game. “There is always a lighthouse, there is always a man, there is always a city” – Elizabeth states within the main story of Bioshock Infinite, the first Bioshock features an underwater city (Rapture) and a man (Jack) and the lighthouse (portal to infinite universe i.e. a tear via the luteuce device.

Assassin’s Creed

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Image Source: http://www.f-covers.com/facebook-cover/assassins-creed

This game series is again known for many great game aspects, however I think the story lines for these games are amazing as they teach us about history and what it was like in that sort of time era. Most of the games feature a character called Ezio and throughout the game series we grow attached to him and other characters which then affect the story line and also our feelings. The story lines are very interesting and there are also many fetch quests, however these fetch quests (unlike other games) are not boring as you still get to free roam around the city with amazing free-running and parkour mechanics as well as beautiful landscapes to view.

Characters

LA Noire

Image result for la noire banner

Image Source: http://game6789.net/san-pham/820/l-a–noire:-the-complete-edition.html

Within this game you play as a detective called Cole Phelps who has just recently joined the Los Angeles Police Department. Although he isn’t a well-known or iconic character such as Mario or Sonic I chose to write about him because his character is unique as we feel the way he feels throughout the story and we watch him grow as a character as you rise through the ranks of the police department. Phelps goes from Patrol Officer to Detective to homicide to vice to then get demoted to arson after a series of events happenend to then unfortunately lead to his death. As well as seeing how his work life is going we also get a glimpse of his home life and we do feel sorry for him at most of times. Also to gain more interest in the game we also have a companion with each promotion. The companions all have different personalities so it gives us a chance to like and hate (as well as having the usual enemies/suspects).

Murdered: Soul Suspect

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Image Source: http://www.nisute.com/2014/06/21/murdered-soul-suspect-rest-in-peace-detective/

Again another detective game in which the main aim is to uncover the mysteries about the deaths of characters. When the detective gets close to uncovering the mystery of the serial killer known as ‘The Bell Killer’ he gets attacked and pushed out the window by the killer. Ronan (the main protagonist) dies and turns into a ghost, he is then informed by his wife (who was already dead) that to rejoin her in the afterlife he needs to solve the case of ‘The Bell Killer’. The story line is good, however it has been said to be the only good thing about the game. I have played it and I do admit it would be hard to replay it as it would be very boring because you know all the mysteries that have been solved  also when in trouble or around enemies you can only really run away. It could have been better if they worked longer on the game or made it today with the technology we have in which we can program AI to learn from your mistakes as well as randomly generate the levels.

Skyrim, Fallout, Saints Row, Grand Theft Auto etc.

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Image Source: http://telkomgaming.co.za/steam-selling-skyrim-for-r50-this-weekend/

Image result for Fallout banner

Image Source: http://s654.photobucket.com/user/ShadowWeezle/media/fallout_banner.jpg.html

Image result for Saints row banner

Image Source: http://www.sticktwiddlers.com/2015/03/10/a-look-back-on-saints-row-from-the-hood-to-hell/

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Image Source: http://www.ucgl.net/page/index.html/_/commnews/frontpage/grand-theft-auto-5-r2

All of the above games feature character customization and character development/progression. I am a really big fan of games like this because designing your character is so much fun; you can make it look like you, make it look like a celebrity or even make it look really creepy and alien-like. When playing as a character you have created you feel a lot more involved and when looking at Grand Theft Auto and the Elder Scrolls we get to see other players character creations online as well as show off our own. I also find that with games like this we enjoy it more as when the main story line is over we still have the chance to unlock items and customize. Character progression is great as it keeps the players so interested and when we have great story lines, great characters and large, immersive environments like all of the games above we find ourselves within a state of flow.

Environments

Rise of the Tomb Raider 

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Image Source: http://gamecloud.net.au/review/rise-of-the-tomb-raider

When the new Tomb Raider games were announced I became quite worried just like many others as most people prefer for good games to stay in their original state, however, the outcome of these games is truly amazing as Lara is looking more realistic, the story reveals more about how she became the Tomb Raider she is and most of all the environments are so immersive. I like the environments in this as the detail is incredible. If there is snow Lara walks slower the thicker it gets, shivers when shes cold and leaves footprints therefore we feel more immersed when playing the game as seeing her reaction to the weather and we actually understand the difficulties she must be facing. When in water her hair and clothes get wet and again we get reactions from her when she enters cold water. As well as the environment affecting Lara, the environment itself gets affected in many ways; paths crumble and the environment can be quite interactive such as smashing walls down, discovering murals and walking into death traps.

Resident Evil 7

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Image Source: http://news.evatech.com.au/

This game has only just come out and I am already amazed by the environment. The graphics are in so much detail from a completely realistic human to centipedes that are so real you don’t want to go near them. Obviously I don’t know too much as the game has only just been released but I know the environment puts the player on edge at all times (as it is a horror game) and the environments are quite enclosed as the player is restricted to tight, confined and scary spaces. They have really put a lot of thought into making this game because they have considered every little detail. One of the main NPC’s named ‘Mia’ is incredibly detailed and I actually questioned if the start up was live action or not as she looks so real.

 Spyro the Dragon

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Image Source: https://www.gamingnexus.com/Article/3479/2012-Gaming-Nexus-IP-Draft-Rounds-5–6

Graphics aren’t always the most important. The 1998 Spyro the Dragon game had such an amazing environment which was great for exploring. When looking for inspiration for my game I looked at Spyro the Dragon because the environment is quite free roam and you have a range of levels and area hubs to explore. There are many themed levels which makes the game even more interesting. Compared to other games I feel like it is very simplistic; I’m not sure if that is because of the time era it was made in or if that is the way in which they decided to go for making the game but simplicity really made the game quite fun to charge around.

Non-Digital Games

Monopoly

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Image Source: http://newfullerton.com/2013/10/13/8th-annual-ywca-monopoly-tournament-set-for-oct-19-in-fullerton/

Monopoly, now known as the game that tears families apart. The game was and still is popular but no one can finish the game as it takes too long to complete and most people are arguing within the first ten minutes. The game is now popular due to the many special releases they have made such as:

  • Monopoly Token Madness.
  • Monopoly: Ultimate Banking Edition.
  • Monopoly Junior Game.
  • Monopoly.
  • Monopoly: Star Wars.
  • Monopoly Empire.
  • Monopoly Junior: Disney/Pixar Finding Dory Edition.
  • Monopoly Junior: Yo-Kai Watch Edition.
  • Monopoly Jackpot.
  • Monopoly: Angry Birds.
  • Monopoly: Disney Princess Edition.
  • Monopoly: Despicable Me 2.
  • Monopoly Junior: Frozen Edition.
  • Monopoly Junior: Disney Sofia the First Edition.
  • Monopoly Grab and Go Game.

and those games above are just the ones from the Hasbro website, here is a link to another site which shows all Monopoly Releases (some may be digital). http://monopoly.wikia.com/wiki/List_of_Monopoly_Games_(Board)

The game is now mainly bought as a collectible item and can be sold for incredible amounts of money. As a Games Design student who is a fan of Fallout 4 I am interested in the Fallout version of monopoly and I also have the disney version, whereas people with other interests such as Game of Thrones or Breaking Bad can pick up a monopoly set thatt they can enjoy.

Dungeons & Dragons

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Image Source: http://www.towergames.co.uk/shop/dungeons-dragons-monster-manual/

This game is very popular and brings many people together. You can create and enjoy many stories as well as read about stories told by fantasy authors. One person is known as ‘The Dungeon Master’ and they control most of the story (they are almost like a narrator), the others play the game by rolling dice to depict parts of the story and aspects of their character as well as actions they might take throughout the game. The game is great for improving imagination and becoming a creative. However there are some issues; even though the game might be quite good to play many people don’t give it chance as it can be seen as ‘unpopular’.

Charades

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Image Source: http://www.ministrypass.com/explore/

I chose to write about this game as it is something that can be played without technology, without a board and even without words. The game requires one person to act out actions so that the other people playing can guess what the word is e.g. if the subject was ‘The Little Mermaid’ the person acting would make little actions then act like a mermaid and the other would have to guess. At the beginning of the action the audience are told how many words it is and also what type of media it is. As simple as this game is (not needing anything at all but players to play the game) people have still made it digital. The digital version is called heads up and the bonus with this game is that it records the players actions and scores points.

My Favorite Games 

Fallout 4

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Image Source: http://3dnpc.com/wiki/fallout-mods/fallout-4/

I really like this game and I was in such a state of flow that I just ignored every other game I had until I had explored everything I could within the game. The game gives us the option to have a companion and we also get a choice of companion in which they all have their own unique personalities and abilities they give us when we achieve 100% happiness within the relationship. The map is rather large as well and even when you attempt to uncover the whole thing you still uncover more. There are many weapons and weapon modifications as well as modifications to armor and your own power armor suit. The environment is amazing and very different to see and that goes with Fallout 3 as well as Fallout New Vegas.

Abe Game Series (Oddysee, Exoddus and New ‘N’ Tasty)

Image result for abe's oddysee banner

Image Source: http://www.wtfgamersonly.com/throwbackthursday-20-years-playstation-oddworld-abes-exoddus/

The game series that got me so interested in becoming a gamer but also scared the life out of me as a child. The original game was so good in its time and so good now that they have decided to remake it, also there will be another Abe game being released soon which has a new story line so fans are incredibly pleased. The game is fun to play as you have to take many risks, be patient and have a childish sense of humor as the game features very informal wordplay, funny but brutal deaths and a Mudokken full of gas. I really like the transformation the game made from Oddysee to Exoddus as you can see the improvements that were made were the improvements we wanted e.g. speaking to more than one mudokken at a time and having mudokken’s with feelings.

Rayman (The Original)

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Image Source: https://blipblop.net/page/2/

I really like the original Rayman which was released on PlayStation 1 for its 2D aspect and its difficulty. I tried to recall playing the game as a child and all I could think about was the first level set and then I recently played it again and remembered that as a child I could never get past those levels and still to this day I find the game intense and difficult. The game has some characters but little detail about them. Usually the NPC’s are usually in danger or in need of help. Also the game is all text and Rayman is mute apart from grunts and little noises.

Bibliography

http://www.ranker.com/crowdranked-list/the-most-compelling-video-game-storylines

http://lanoire.wikia.com/wiki/Cole_Phelps

Game Theory – Self Initiated

After lots of thinking I have decided on a main game idea. I wrote my project proposal and throughout the proposal I changed many ideas and throughout creating the main game I will most probably come across some game changes. To finally decide on a game idea I had an in depth discussion with my teacher to understand what would be possible to make and what would also provide me with a challenge, I also created a survey in which I asked my classmates to answer. The survey features each game idea I created and I asked students to choose their favourite. Two ideas became favourites:

Idea 5 – Spyro/Gex style game. Finding Collectables to complete a level, also featuring a free-roam hub area and player choice of levels.

Idea 6 – Horror style game either 2.5D side scroller or third person view (similar to the way in which Crash Bandicoot plays). Cartoon low poly theme, jump scares and lots of enemies.

My idea at the moment (it still might have some slight changes) will play similar to Crash Bandicoot and Spyro as there will be a main hub area with separate themed level areas with individual levels inside. Rather than having a horror themed I have decided to do themed levels/areas. Below is my research towards my game ideas and inspirations.

Level Areas

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Crash Bandicoot: Warped – Medieval Area

Image Source: https://wizarddojo.com/2015/07/30/crash-bandicoot-warped-review/

I like this game style and also the level area idea as the main character starts in one area and then walks into a themed zone which then gives you the option to choose 6 levels that match that theme. For example the theme above is Medieval so the environment around Crash Bandicoot features castle pieces, a time turner and some sort of wooden device.

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Crash Bandicoot: Warped – Futuristic Area

Image Source: http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=&page=3

This is the futuristic area which features futuristic skyscrapers and lots of lights to give a very technical effect. Again this is a really great area to explore as are the others. This game is great as it features many different levels that delve into different eras.

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Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back – Level Areas/Main Hub

Image Source: http://www.vizzed.com/games/crash-bandicoot-2cortex-strikes-back-psx-playstation-34267-user-screenshots

In this Crash Bandicoot Game the levels are not based on time periods, they are based on environments in general. For example jungle, snow, sewer, night etc.

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Spyro the Dragon – Town Square Level Entrance

Image Source: http://www.emuparadise.me/Sony_Playstation_-_Demos_ISOs/Spyro_the_Dragon_Demo_-_Foil_Version_[U]_[SCUS-94439]/138910

I like the level entrances to the Spyro levels because they don’t give anything away about the level theme but the title. Most of the doorway frames look quite similar, however depending on the time of day or weather the sky inside the portal will be different such as Town Square is at sunset (late afternoon) so inside the portal you can see a nice orange sky.

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Spyro the Dragon – Dark Hollow Level Entrance

Image Source: http://www.redbubble.com/people/mpc3rd/works/20926601-spyro-the-dragon-sunny-flight-realm

In this level you can see a night sky as the level is set during the night. I also like how the game is very consistent with the font as from portal levels to gem values you can see this font.

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Super Mario 64 – Level Entrance via Painting in Themed Area

Image Source: http://www.mobygames.com/game/n64/super-mario-64/screenshots/gameShotId,246942/

Such a classic game, Mario 64 has the use of paintings as your transportation to your levels. The main hub area is Princess Peachs Castle in which you can find many hidden secrets and find many collectibles. The aim of this game is to progress from level to level by collecting stars to get further on in the game and finding your friends. In the later edition on the Nintendo DS you start as protagonist Yoshi whereas in the older version you start as iconic protagonist Mario. As you explore the different rooms of the castle you come across different paintings/levels and usually depending on the level the painting matches the theme of the room e.g. this water level is set in a water themed room.

Super Mario 64 – Hidden Level Entrance Inside Boo Ghost

Within the castle there are hidden levels so that you can earn extra stars and there are even stars hidden around the castle. In this example their is a hidden level found inside a ghost. If you are a big Mario fan you will know that these ghosts disappear when you look at them and reappear whilst chasing you and when you are not looking at them, after defeating the ghost it drops a mini-mansion in which you can then explore as a level.

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Gex: Enter the Gecko – Hub Area, Level Entrance to Toon TV 

Image Source: http://www.vizzed.com/boards/profile.php?id=182516&profile=game&screenshots=250

This game isn’t as well known as Super Mario, however I love the way in which you are teleported to your levels via a television screen. The hub area isn’t really the best yet the game was released in 1998 so for its time it is ok. There are some aspects of the main hub area that I like such as the different colours to represent some areas, secret/hidden levels and interactive objects (the televisions); I don’t really like how plain the hub area is as all of the floors and walls are mainly all the same texture, also there is just a bit of blue or white as a background which does make the hub stand out but I think it is just too plain.

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Donald Duck: Quack Attack – Level Area no. 1

Image Source: http://superadventuresingaming.blogspot.co.uk/2014/10/donald-duck-quack-attack-psx.html

Such a classic Disney game in which you play as Donald Duck. This game features a main hub area at the Duck house and then it has platforms you can stand on which transport Donald to different themed areas which then feature 6 individual levels that relate to the themed area.

WatchMojo – Top 10 Video Game Hub Areas

This video shows the top ten video game hub areas and explains very well each area and game. WatchMojo is very trusted and is watched by many, I find them great to look at for ideas.

Character Design

Image result for coco bandicootImage result for crash bandicoot original

Crash Bandicoot and Coco Bandicoot – Crash Bandicoot Game Series

Image Sources:

Girls Who Hack: Coco Bandicoot Was My Childhood Role Model

Generation gone: Where PlayStation mascot Crash Bandicoot is today

Looking at characters I am looking for a low poly style. Most of the games I am looking at can’t help but be low poly due to the time era in which they were made, yet some have been purposely made low poly for the choice of art style. Above is Crash Bandicoot and Coco Bandicoot from the Crash Bandicoot game series. The characters are low poly yet very recognizable. Crash is quite slim and lanky, whereas Coco is slim and small; comparing these to their older brother Crunch he is rather large in comparison.

Image result for ape escape character

Spike – Ape Escape

Image Source: http://sarugetchu.wikia.com/wiki/Spike

The Ape Escape character has changed over the years, however I chose the character from the first game because he is low poly. His hair is spiked (also matching his name) and he is that low poly you can even see some of the topology.

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Lara Croft (young) – Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation

Image Source: https://www.pinterest.com/elisadeiaco/tomb-raider-iv-the-last-revelation/

Out of the large range of Tomb Raider games I decided to pick Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation because I played this so much as a child growing up with games and also I find the character looks so different to most of the other character designs as she is a lot younger here in this game. Again this game isn’t supposed to be low poly, however it is just because of the time era it was made. Also I quite like the clothing here as it sparks the look of a little adventure.

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Donkey Kong – Donkey Kong 64

Image Source: http://gamefabrique.com/games/donkey-kong-64/

Donkey Kong is just as loved as Mario, Spyro and Crash Bandicoot, however he is shaped different to the others. He is strong and has longer arms because of the type of animal he is, I have to take into consideration animals as characters as most games feature animals as the protagonist.

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Sam and Max – Sam and Max: Freelance Police

Image Source: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/VideoGame/SamAndMaxFreelancePolice

From the subject of animals I have also looked at the game Sam and Max, this game was originally 2D, however the decided to make it 3D and the characters are quite low poly but the polys have been smoothed out. Simple characters made for a classic game remake.

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Pyramid Head – Silent Hill Game Series

Image Source: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/364791638542651439/

Pyramid head isn’t really low poly but his mask is amazing to look at for my sort of art style. In the original game Pyramid Head was low poly again due to the time era in which the game was made. Looking at his mask and his weapon though gives me ideas for my character design and also just the fact that the character is so well known due to his design and his appearances.

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Manny Cavalera – Grim Fandango

Image Source: https://suwalls.com/games/manny-calevera-grim-fandango-33768/

A game I have not yet played, however the art style looks quite interesting. Also this game has been remastered lately but still has the same art style. Again it is low poly and the art is different as each level is set on November 2nd (Day of the Dead) which has such an amazing advantage towards the art style.

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Alice – Alice: Return to Madness

Image Source: https://www.pinterest.com/Mollylynn549/alice-in-wonderland/

This game isn’t really low poly but i like the art style and I like the outfit changing. Most levels throughout this game feature different outfits depending on the level theme. Alice in Wonderland is great to look at as so many people see the story of Alice as a way to express their art e.g. Disney, Tim Burton etc.

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Link – Zelda: Wind Waker

Image Source: http://zelda.wikia.com/wiki/The_Legend_of_Zelda:_The_Wind_Waker

A game I haven’t played but it looks like a very different take compared to the other Zelda games. I like the low poly style yet I would add a bit of edge to their faces as they look very rounded.

Art Styles

Ylands is a sandbox / survival game with a gorgeous, low poly style. It’s still very early in development, but the description hints at an interesting mix of world-building, exploring, crafting - and just trying to stay alive. Looking forward to how...

Ylands is a sandbox / survival game with a gorgeous, low poly style. It’s still very early in development, but the description hints at an interesting mix of world-building, exploring, crafting - and just trying to stay alive. Looking forward to how...

Ylands is a sandbox / survival game with a gorgeous, low poly style. It’s still very early in development, but the description hints at an interesting mix of world-building, exploring, crafting - and just trying to stay alive. Looking forward to how...

Ylands – Survival Game

Game and Image Source: http://www.hypersimulated.com/post/141912346927/ylands-is-a-sandbox-survival-game-with-a

This is very similar to what I am wanting to achieve. A preview screen on the oculus gave me the idea to do the low poly style game, however this game is something similar to what I would like to accomplish as it is low poly, third person and it also serves as inspiration towards most of my design work such as character design and environment design.

Aer Game – by Forgotten Key

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Necropolis Game

Low poly style yet it differs from the others as it is quite dark and has certain hues coming from each light e.g in the image above most of the environment is blue because the flames and the pyramid light are blue. The character isn’t as low poly as the environment which makes the character stand out, however their outfit is also blue (bit of a cold colour).

Jackie Chan Adventures Game

This was a childhood favourite for me as there was a cartoon show of this and then the game was made so it was a great transition from tv show to game as the art style was similar and still portrayed in a cartoon fashion. The lines are more bold and I think nowadays a lot of games use this art style to make bold statements. Games such as Borderlands and any Tell Tale game has the use of this art style.

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MineCraft

Image Source: https://www.wired.com/tag/minecraft/

MineCraft is such a well-known and popular game yet I am just not a fan of it. I really like low poly art styles but in my opinion I believe that this is just too low poly. I like the concept of creating your own world but I just can’t get into this game. Also a lot of people try to make really detailed towns or cities which look realistic because they have used so many blocks but I just don’t understand the point in that as the game is supposed to be for building low poly. Example above. I do think it is a great thing to

Innerspace

The game seems very relaxing to play especially by watching the trailer above. The music is nice and calm and even though you are flying a ship you can see a bit of freedom from the bird looking ship as it slowly strokes a wall with its wing. It seems interesting and is mainly a collectible based game in which the player learns a lot about the artifacts that you collect and about the environment around them as well as upgrading your own ship.

Image Source: http://www.alanzucconi.com/2015/06/20/the-3-most-anticipated-games-lowpoly/

OceanHeart

Image Source: http://oceanheartgame.tumblr.com/

I really like the environment and I also like the way in which the character was designed. I automatically think about using a normal human shape whereas this character is quite small with a large head for a more cartoon-like style. Also the shadow is a pretty good touch to the scene even if this is just a poster.

Image result for low poly game

Sea of Solitude

Image Source: http://www.alanzucconi.com/2015/06/20/the-3-most-anticipated-games-lowpoly/

Yet another low poly style but the water is incredible. I’m not entirely sure how they managed to do the water but it looks quite real as it is reflective and there is also a current if you look carefully. I really like the pastel colours, most of the games I have researched so far have quite bright colours so it is nice to have a different game style that isn’t so much in the players face.

Creative Futures – Roof Space – Game Research

Throughout the evolution of games roof space may not be an environment space you think about straight away, however,  the roof in games is used quite often for many purposes therefore it is a design process that really needs to be considered.

Reasons to use a roof space and game examples:

  • Saints Row IV: Helicopter Pads.

In Saints Row Helipads are essential at the beginning of the game as throughout the game you gain super powers which allow you to almost fly but you get those powers later on so flying vehicles become very useful. As well as being very helpful in transport and battle the helipads are not just there to provide vehicles but they are there as a luxury and a matter of appearance. The Saints Row series is all about your reputation and how people see you, having a helipad shows that you have a lot of money.

Saints Row 001

  • Dead Island: Hiding from Zombies.

Dead Island 001

I don’t know if it is just me that does this but I use rooftops to hide from zombies. In Dead Island Zombies cannot, to my knowledge, climb ladders so using rooftops towards my advantage is very useful. You can use a range of weapons to attack them from far away and find useful resources in high up places.

  • Dying Light: Main Story.

Dying Light 001.jpg

Dying Light is a free-running/park-our which you fight and run from zombies. Throughout the game you climb up buildings and run across rooftops as well as fighting on the ground as well so most of the main story is set on the rooftops of an apocalyptic city.

  • Batman: Arkham Knight: Environment Atmosphere.

Batman 001.jpg

Throughout the Batman games series you spend a lot of time in a large variety of environment spaces. Medical Facilities, Botanical Gardens, The Batcave and many more, however, a lot of the time you spend travelling to these locations and you do this by gliding over the city. Although the Arkham Knight game introduced the Bat Mobile we still find side quests the require us to glide rather than drive. It’s one of my favourite rooftop environments as the cityscapes usually look all gloomy and dull but yet they still look beautiful and you feel the urge to explore the whole city.

  • The Amazing Spider man Game: Appearence.

Spiderman 002

 

Whilst playing The Amazing Spiderman game missions are separate from the free-roam world. Once you start a mission you have to either quit out of it or finish it to go back to the open world. If you’re a huge collectible fan then you will probably know that you see a lot of roof space whilst travelling and collecting items. The rooftops don’t really need to be detailed and most of them look a like but you don’t use the roof space much, you just see the roof space a lot.

  • Fallout 4: DIY, build your own roof space.

Fallout 001

Unlike the other games I have mentioned, Fallout 4 gives the player the chance to design their own space. As long as you have all of the resources that you need you can create whatever you like. Building can be quite complex especially as you don’t just build, you also trade resources with other settlements, wire electrics, supply water and defend. When creating a roof space you can use it for anything you want such as a chilled area in which enemies cannot attack, a defense post including turrets and gunners etc.

  • The Last of Us: Design, Atmosphere and Immersion.

In The Last of Us the environment is incredible. It is unlike any other game as other apocalyptic games show damage but The Last of Us shows more than human and zombie destruction; it also shows nature destruction. Plants are everywhere in The Last of Us environments and because other games don’t use environments like this we become so immersed in our surroundings.

Overall game environments are very important as we have a reason to be in that environment at that current time, whether it be saving the game, hiding from enemies or just exploring.

Creative Futures – Architecture

Game Architecture

Cultures – Roman and Egyptian architecture look quite similar. They would have large structures and both have tombs (secret or not secret). Roman buildings usually had quite beautiful architecture they had arches on their buildings that were rounded at the top whereas Egyptians would use square and triangular shapes rather than rounded. The architecture in those centuries meant a lot to the people and was quite symbolic. However, a main similarity between these two cultures is the fact that both cultures had the passion to create large structures that are very outstanding compared to the present day in which nearly every building is the same.

RomanArchitectureEgypt

Film architecture – Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit has its own style of architecture. In these films the people who lived in the cities would not cut down trees however they would build around them instead; this style of architecture looks stunning as the wildlife grows around all of the buildings which adds to the architecture. As well as Lord of the Rings, films such as Alice in Wonderland have a great style of environment as it has a crazy and abstract style from the help of Disney and Tim Burton.

Hobbit.jpgCastle.jpg

Countries – Spain has flat roofs because there is not much rain at all during the year whereas in England if we had flat roofs our houses would collapse because of the amount of rain that would flood the house. Russian architecture is beautifully shaped and stylized as well as colourful; the type of architecture here is again very symbolic and must have taken a lot of effort to build. Arabic buildings are still colourful but are more bland/pastel colours and hold a lot of detail, also a lot of repetition is used. I love the Japanese and Chinese architecture. They are both quite similar as they both use curves and points to shape their buildings however the Chinese use deeper curves. Also the Statues around the buildings will also be different as they will be based on symbolic and religious themes.

Spain.jpg

Spain

England.jpg

England

Russian Architecture.jpg

Russia

Arabic.jpg

Arabic

Japanese

Japanese

Chinese.jpg

Chinese

History – Viking, Medieval, Tudor, Vikings. Vikings had a lot of architecture that was in a triangular form. Vikings would use beams of painted wood to show their symbolic cultures. Medieval times had timber structures with a cottage style and a straw rood. They would also have white against black architecture. Tudor architecture was similar but they used white against grey or used different colours instead of white.

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Viking

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Medieval

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Tudor

We are influenced by many types of media and information. However we don’t always know the truth about what everything looked like in the past because of the way everything has been modified/restored today.

Architecture within Games

Assassin’s Creed

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Assassin's Creed 002

Assassin's Creed 003

The Architecture in all of the Assassin’s Creed games is beautifully stunning and very accurate to the history period in which the game is set in. The games are usually set in different areas or different time periods and sometimes within one game there can be a cross between two.

Batman

Batman 001Batman 002

BATMAN™: ARKHAM KNIGHT_20150626025853
BATMAN™: ARKHAM KNIGHT_20150626025853

The Batman Games series is great to look at for architecture because whilst playing as Batman you get a bug’s eye view of the buildings as well as a bird’s eye view so the architecture is very detailed. Each building is different and certain buildings that relate to the missions are extraordinary such as Wonder Tower or Wayne Enterprises. The city is based in a city but it is not like all the other games based in cities as this game has made the city very gloomy and dull yet it still looks amazing. You can even use the building to your advantage to take down enemies and view the city.

Fallout

Fallout 001Fallout 002Fallout 003

I really like the art style of the Fallout game series as the towns/cities are supposed to be set in the 1950’s but we only really see the environments with the after effects of a nuclear explosion. In the Beginning of Fallout 4 we have the chance to experience a section of the game for a little while before the explosion which is great as it gives us an opportunity to see what it was like before.

 

 

Notes

Art deco – Geometric shapes.

Art Nouveau – Plants and Wildlife.

 

Games Design – Iconic Antagonists Infographic

My Info-graphic is based on Iconic Antagonists. Most of it is drawn digitally, my inspiration comes from my favourite 2D Platform games. The brief asks for a ‘visual understanding of the heritage of games’, my theme was Iconic Antagonists and I have looked more into the visual side rather than the research, however, I have included facts and useful information, enough for someone to ‘visually understand’.

Final Timeline-01

 

 

 

 

I have used appropriate game concepts to match the chosen theme and I applied 2D game design principles throughout this project. I believe that I could have improved the transition between each game, even though I tried to experiment with transitions such as pixelation, the Mario pipe and smoke I still feel it could look better if I worked harder. However, I am really proud of the final product as it took a lot of time and effort, also I used a drawing tablet to draw the characters and environment and I’m glad that each set is recognizable.

 

 

 

 

Games Design, Environment Design – Bethesda Softworks, Noah Berry

SkyrimFallout

(Elder Scrolls V, Skyrim)                             (Fallout 3)  Source: http://noahberry.weebly.com/f3.html

http://80.lv/articles/building-open-worlds-with-skyrim-envir-artist/

Noah Berry is an environment artist from Bethesda Softworks who was influenced to enter this career choice as they enjoyed fine art and graduated from University with a Ba (hons) in the subject. Berry gives advice towards environment art saying that you start with the basic shapes then work your way into the detail, use basic shapes at first and then add in texture, colour and lighting effects. I am a huge fan of Skyrim and I believe that the graphics for the game are highly realistic and very stunning, from the environmental concept art that I have seen I like the way they have drawn the image from a certain camera angle; from the first image above you can see the camera angle is stunning. The image shows the sun in the centre and the light creates a shadow on the character as well as setting a tranquil setting on the beautiful lake streaming from the mountains which is slightly glistening in the sun. (The use of The Rule of Thirds).

Berry uses a program by Unity called World Machine in which you can create the world you want using all sorts of different terrains and detail. The environment is obviously one of the main important aspects that needs to be created with detail and the correct colours to know where you are and also when you are because the environment can debate the time era as well as where you are whether it be somewhere around the world or even in a completely different dimension.

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