Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Slightly More Detailed Storyboard

Monday, December 08, 2008

Far Cry 2

Farcry 2, spiritual successor to Crytek's FarCry. There is no relation in terms of storyline between the two games. Crytek wasn't even involved in the production of FarCry 2.

Surprisingly, I find that a good thing. Why? Because then they wouldn't have decided to use their power hungry Cryengine on Farcry2. The DUNIA engine used in Farcry2 is way more efficient and optimized, graphics-wise. As far as I can tell at least.

The realism in the environment is very immersive even on my weak Asus G1s lappie. I had to play at 1024x728 resolution though. You could actually feel the heat in the hot desert and actually feel like standing under the shade of a tree when it is high noon and blazing hot. And you can pretend you're a real hunter too. DIE ZEBRA!

The engine also has very good fire effects, fire spreads to whereever there is grass. And the engine seems to take consideration what kind of grass as well. If you're in a swampy area, the fire won't spread as horrifyingly as in the hot wide open plains.

Animation is also a fine point in the game. Everything the player does is in first person view, which is effective at making it feel like you're directly controlling the player. However, the lack of legs can sometimes make you question your existence.

Character models and animation are done very well too. I say this in comparison to Fallout 3.

Driving in Farcry 2 is quite frustrating as the cars feel too light and steering is too snappy. But maybe that is just limited to the PC version.

The explosion and action effects are pretty awesome, guns feel powerful and all that, one mentionable is that ammo crates light up like firecrackers when fired upon.

Then theres the quests.

I think playing Fallout 3 alongside Farcry2 has clouded my judgement over the quality of quests in Farcry 2 but hear me out.

I do enjoy the open world in Farcry2 but it just doesn't feel open enough, to get to point A to point B, there is often only a single most effecient road to get there. This is comparable to driving to work on the same road every flipping day.

Not only that, if this road has an enemy checkpoint, you HAVE to stop and take care of them before moving on. Or you'll die in the explosion of your car. This for me disrupts the flow in the game. I just want to get to Point B with no interruptions please.

It's different in Fallout 3 because the enemies are in random places all the time. In Farcry2 it's like, "Augh, not THIS checkpoint again. I just leveled the place 5 minutes ago!"

That is one of the major turnoffs in Farcry 2 for me. Repetition. Graphic-wise, awesome. If you'd like to explore Africa in the comfort of your own home, this is a nice visual simulation of it.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Big Boss Says

Mister Kerotan

Monday, December 01, 2008

Skeleton Jack and The Temple of the Terracotta Squid

This post details me and my adventures in The Faculty of FCM and The Project Of Yearly Finality!

Concept Board

Character Design

  • Skeleton Jack

Clearly an homage to Samurai Jack, this oriental treasure hunter is as bad-ass as (that was a mouthful) Genndy Tartakovsky's popular Samurai Jack.

The origins of Skeleton Jack is of yet unexplored and we just have to assume he doesn't eat very much. His anatomy isn't too accurate in the concept board.

Limbs and any articulatory appendages are simplified in order to ease animation.

Lookie, its little ol' Samurai Jack.

  • Gui the Temple Apparition

The powerful apparition which guards the Terracotta Squid. Contrary to what the top image would convey, Gui is not a wugui, therefore is perfectly as untortoise-like as you can not imagine.

Later, I came up with one of those hideous ghost demons that you usually see on Chinese New Year. After a few more sketches I decided to ease my workload by simplifying Gui into something less hideous and slightly more appealing but still maintain a certain level of menace.

I also experimented with a dragon/serpent design but decided that with my inexperience, I would have problems animating the damn thing.

  • Little Baby Guis

Creepy little creatures that are supposedly offspring of powerful ghosts. Only two made it into the treatment so far as having more may convey a sense of "he doesn't love that one as much as that other one"-ness.

  • Temple Guardians

Mechanized guardians of the Temple. Design greatly influenced by robots from the Samurai Jack episode "Samurai vs. Samurai". They have blades for arms and uniform roughly similiar with the Terracotta army armor theme.

Background and Prop Design

The treasure was initially a fruit, a gold ingot and a ruby squid. But ruby squids don't really fit in an oriental setting. Terracotta it is then! Though it's not reaaaally that valuable. Then again, that might explain the ending.

The temple design was based upon a few reference images of pagodas which I didn't save because I sketched on the spot.

I always loved those curvy hills that you see in a lot of "China" tagged images so that's what I plan to use as the main background scenery in the animation.

A treasure hunter, Skeleton Jack, clearly an homage to the Genndy Tartakovsky (I can't get enough of saying that name) TV series, Samurai Jack, finds the Temple Of The Terracotta Squid, grabs the goods, becomes hunted and a spoilerific ending ensues. Now don't tell anyone about the ending. It's only between you and me.

Longest. Post. Ever.