Kingdom Espionage: A Look Behind the Scenes at Video Game Art and Game Development
Have you ever wondered how video games get from the rich imaginations of game designers on to the electronic screen? Are you curious about what it takes to become a video game artist? The folks at DreamHatch Studios are hard at work on Kingdom Espionage and have posted the project on Kickstarter with a whole lot of concept art, offering rare insight into the game development process! Check out these concept stills.
Sweet, right? But game design isn't just about how things look standing still.
Characters have to move, and the world around them has to be able to interactive based on those movements.
So game art has to include notes on the way things work, becoming a sort of a cross between art and, well, let's call it fantasy-based engineering. Take a look at this concept work for the ice ring spell:
See how the artist's concept includes the start of the spell, the cast effect, and the final explosion? These notes help to ensure that the artist's vision is translated into the final product, and it gives the programmers something to relate to visually while they are laying the groundwork for the character's movement. To see how this art translates onto the moving screen, check out the game's Kickstarter page for a video!
When thinking about game design, characters are almost always the first thing to come to mind, but game art is much, much more than that. Have you ever thought about the elements in the game that the characters have to interact with?
Everything that appears in a video game has to be envisioned by a video game artist.
Trees, rocks, sky, buildings, animals, weapons, caves, dungeon walls... everything! Take a look at these concept drawings for traps that you can connect to the floor tiles of your castle.
See how the art isn't just a picture? The artist has included notes on how each trap operates, including how it looks before the trap is sprung, how the trap is triggered, and what happens when it is released. Video game art is often about designing moving parts, and the concept art has to reflect those interactions.
Finally, video game art has to be fleshed out.
From the concept art to the final product, complete with rich textures, light, and shadow, giving the player a sense of depth and realism (assuming the game is going for realism), video game art must be comprehensive.
Take a look!