Out of Thin Air
It has been nothing but a pleasure to be working at RillyBoss Studios, This will be my first gig as a game developer for a local company. All I ever wanted to do was make video games and now I’m finally here. In this blog post, I will show you how to create a character out of thin air.
Hello, my name is Julian, I am in charge of concepts and character creation at RillyBoss. A lot of my work focuses on the environmental aspect of video games, however, I found this to be a good chance to build my skill set. You may have seen my previous concept work in the community update 4, like those the process for character development is very similar. I will show you the process of creating a character. The character I will be showing you is our Firelord enemy in the desert level. This is like a sneak preview of what is to come! With everything, you start off with concept art and for characters, something that is good to learn is silhouette design.
As a team, we picked the three that we liked the most and went with them to design our final concepts for our characters. They are numbered to help us decide which ones are the best fit for the look we are going for. The Firelord is a combination of #16 and #4 and using those shapes I was able to create these rough sketches.
Once the concepts are done for the characters its time for modeling! When modeling characters it’s good to take note of the look and feel of the game you’re aiming for. Our game is low poly and has a very stylized look to it. The 3D model for Firelord isn’t exactly like the concept drawing, however, It gets the point across and has the overall shape design we were aiming for. The model matched the look of the game and the concept art which is what you should always aim for. This is the complete model for the Firelord in all of its glory!
Here is a short video of my moving the skeleton to create animations of Firelord. Firelord is a very bulky being so he moves slower than most creatures. Keeping that in mind helps the process of making the animations look and feel believable. The 12 principles of animation is also a handy tool to use at your disposal. With these principles, you will be able to animate anything your hearts desire.
12 Animation Principles:
- SQUASH AND STRETCH:
This action gives the illusion of weight and volume to a character as it moves.
This movement prepares the audience for a major action the character is about to perform, such as starting to run, jump or change expression.
A pose or action should clearly communicate to the audience the attitude, mood, reaction or idea of the character as it relates to the story and continuity of the storyline.
- STRAIGHT AHEAD AND POSE TO POSE ANIMATION:
Straight ahead animation starts at the first drawing and works drawing to drawing to the end of a scene.
- FOLLOW THROUGH AND OVERLAPPING ACTION:
When the main body of the character stops all other parts continue to catch up to the main mass of the character, such as arms, long hair, clothing, coat tails or a dress, floppy ears or a long tail.
- SLOW-OUT AND SLOW-IN:
As action starts, we have more drawings near the starting pose, one or two in the middle, and more drawings near the next pose.
All actions, with few exceptions (such as the animation of a mechanical device), follow an arc or slightly circular path.
- SECONDARY ACTION:
This action adds to and enriches the main action and adds more dimension to the character animation, supplementing and/or re-enforcing the main action.
Expertise in timing comes best with experience and personal experimentation, using the trial and error method in refining technique.
Exaggeration is not an extreme distortion of a drawing or extremely broad, violent action all the time. It’s like a caricature of facial features, expressions, poses, attitudes, and actions.
- SOLID DRAWING:
The basic principles of drawing form, weight, volume solidity and the illusion of three dimensions apply to animation as it does to academic drawing.
A live performer has charisma. An animated character has appeal. The appealing animation does not mean just being cute and cuddly. All characters have to have appeal whether they are heroic, villainous, comic or cute.
Thanks for stopping by, Keep on creating!