Award related interview

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Fairytale Fights recently won an award for best visuals. That’s still awesome, but I must also admit that getting those visuals in place was not easy. Now this months Control magazine (no.22) contains a 2 page interview where I talk about some of the struggles and battle tactics regarding Fairytale Fight’s visuals. For those who are interested…check it out :]

And as stated in the interview, I believe that the most important ingredients for a strong visual style are a solid rule-set and a good production process. That was clearly something we lacked at first, but later on everything started to fall in place. Let me show you some of the tools I used to get Fairytale Fights style in place.

Below you can see a few pages from the style-guide; a guide that contains a set of abstract rules that describe the visual style… It was definitely not the most popular document in the studio, for it dictated a lot of boundaries and in a way restricted the creative freedom of the artists.  But at the same time it was the key element that ensured a strong consistent style. It even helps the art director himself from changing his mind half-way the project.

Some random pages from Fairytale Fights styleguide

Below you can see some of our art sheets. These specific sheets were send over to Vietnam to be modeled and animated. Now because we were outsourcing these assets we needed to be very clear about every detail. For example, below you see that not all the arches in the model sheet are colored. We figured that the Vietnamese team could apply the same colour pallette of the arch in the bottom on all other arches…big mistake. It became a mess, and we were forced to color every individual asset. As we did in all following sheets.

Also the sheets you see below are just the tip of the iceberg. These sheets were accompanied by enormous excel sheets, naming-covention and file-management documents, technical guides and multiple content managers. All just to assure that we would actually get what we asked for.

An asset sheet

An animation sheet


Below you see one of the first animation sheets I made. This animation sheet was the basis for two of the first boss fights; “The beaver boss, champion of the lumberjack forest’. Now as you can see, this sheets contains far less information than the sheet for Hansel&Gretel above (it contains no sequences, just 1 key pose per boss-move). But in this case that worked fine because the beaver boss was fully developed in-house. So in this case we could just talk with each other about the details and you didn’t need  to write down everything. This made things far more dynamic and also more fun to develop….yeah, I guess I wasn’t a big fan of outsourcing, it’s true…

But I must say, after we ironed out the outsource process,  the Vietnamese team did manage to create hundreds of great art assets in a really short time. And that I believe, is the real power of outsourcing. So it’s not all bad :]

The first animation sheet

 
(Fairytale Fights copyright Playlogic)
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