Monday, 3 March 2014

Brainstorming Ideas

Along with our timetabled sessions in college, our group have been sharing and discussing our work via 'Google Drive' and a 'Facebook' group conversation. When we decided to make a game initially, there were some loose ideas on style, but we hadn't pinned down any solid narrative. We liked the idea of a Steampunk/ Cyberpunk approach, and decided to each put together a moodboard each to generate more ideas:

With my moodboard I included lots of stylised imagery, displaying a mix of environments and character illustrations often following the Steampunk genre. We had discussed originally creating a retro car racing game, so I included some vintage cars and Batmobiles with wacky expressive forms. The Steampunk Star Wars illustrations down the right hand side of the moodboard give a good sense of colour and tone. You have the muted brownish colours with retro art-deco forms. I also included nostalgic propaganda adds for a comedic tone. I thought this kind of approach might help with world building, including billboards that reflect the virtual world the player inhabits. Ultimately, we decided against the car racing idea.

Teammate Adam produced a more futuristic Cyber Punk moodboard, a style which I adopted with my first early production piece:

I took a rainy street approach, as there is something very visually appealing about a damp reflective floor. Often in film, the ground is deliberately wet to reflect silhouettes and lights on set. The idea of an early production piece is to inspire the team and sell the IP. Before rigorous research, this loose piece just suggests a possible approach, so the key idea was to achieve something very visually satisfying. Furthermore, I adopted a complementary orange and blue colour scheme. I am following basic design principles here, like included human subjects in the piece for scale and to in turn boost the narrative. To the right nearest the foreground, there is a man sitting curled up looking cold, likely homeless. To the left we see a man walking, hands in pocket hunched over, looking stand-offish. In the far distance to the right, we can just make out a couple fighting. These small events tell us that this is a poor, crime ridden location:

I think the general feedback with this piece, was that it felt too futuristic, and was lacking the whole retro approach. Note that at this very early stage our ideas were still very loose, and we were just visually jamming. Like the 'The Last of Us' video, we had a very basic premise, and all we knew was that we wanted something retro science fiction.

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