The New Artists
There have been so many comments from everyone about what they think the Old North's characters should be portrayed as. Even as we discussed it internally there were a couple of disagreements here and there, both regarding art styles and the artists themselves. Last Tuesday however, we came to a decision.
To answer which artist we would like to embody the spirit of Old North, we returned to our roots on how we originally wanted the game to be. The Old North is, in a single sentence, a hybrid between J-RPG gameplay and western style of mature storytelling. We love old school RPGs, but we can't help to think that their plots are often.. too awesome (we've just recapped FF8's storyline, and boy did we shake our heads). To over-simplify things, think of it as making a Final Fantasy, a Chrono Trigger, or a Suikoden with the plot of Inception, The Dark Knight, or Game of Thrones.
As such, we decided on this Reynard, made by the collaboration of artist #4's sketch and #3's coloring:
Reynard was never designed to be handsome in the sense of a common J-RPG hero. He is fierce, has titanic strength, and is arrogant beyond limits. That masculinity is what makes him Reynard. It is what makes him shine among other characters. We think this representation best suits that image.
We noticed that many of you liked Reynard #1. For those who do, we'd like you to know that the artist himself told us that he has other commitments to pursue and that he won't be able to work on schedule due to them.
So, from today and onwards, please welcome the two artists who will be making all the character illustrations for the Old North! :)
As with last update, there are so many questions regarding game designs. Sometimes it's good to ask ourselves: why are we doing it like this? Can we do it differently? Are we just copying what others do? When we understand the limits of the box that we created in our minds, we can let creativity out of it and explore many, many more possibilities.
So, today's question is:
Why do main heroes in Japanese games tend to be younger than their Western counterparts?
We always say this as a joke in our office -- if you're past 20, you can't save the world anymore. But why does it always have to be someone so young wielding that big ass sword (or key, depending on what games you play), killing thousands of higher-ranked soldiers, generals, soul-eating demons, and world-ending sorcerer-gods? We don't know for sure how old Commander Shepard or the Dragonborn is, but probably not in the teenage years anymore :P