Character art work request

First things first. I’m not an artist, at least not a good one :stuck_out_tongue:

So, I had this idea of creating a character (Captain Holt) that will follow your progress and at the start gives you a little tutorial and introduction to the archipelago biome. That is how far I got, he shows up at the start, explaining and teaching a few things. Later I want him to be a recurring character for a few new events and maybe even a campaign.

I needed an image for him, those that show above the dialogs, a few example already in the game:

With my (not) incredible art skills, I made this one:

And… I didn’t like it :disappointed:
So I’m here asking if there is a good soul out there with free time to help me with this? :blush:


@Kittyodoom :wink: 20chars

{Appears from a puff of smoke}
I have been summoned?

Do you have a general concept of his appearance? Something you could stick into Google to give a few reference images for how you envision him?

That’s a problem I have, I’m not sure how I want him…
I’m sure that he is not a low level sailor, but not also some super high royal captain either. Maybe just a friendly pirate. I hadn’t developed him any further than being a guide/helper to the biome.

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Hehe, ok, that’s fair. I’m predisposed with school stuff atm, but I’ll toss you a few concept pieces later, help figure out what appeals to you most and refine it from there. If I had a Voxel art app for my iPad, I would “doodle” something out now, but alas…


Big apology, needs to wait until a bit longer; my cheap mouse died on me, need to replace it while out tomorrow morning

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I could help too!, but as Kitty said, you’ll ususally need more of a concept for who he really is in order to design one

Perhaps a old pirate captain that now retured but owns the lands? And is welcoming you?

There’s no female NPC’s that relate to a biom aside that lady from the township quest, so perhaps a female pirate? With a more warm Personality? Or not?

You can juggle around with anyconcept to bring something interesting to mind

I’ll just do some basic concept art while i’m at school since i have nothing better to do :slight_smile:

I liked the idea of a female pirate. Sounds cool. (btw, searching “female pirate” is not safe for work lol)
Here is what I got so far.

The starting guide, where a character will introduce you to a few new things in the biome. This is already working and finished, except for the graphic image of the character. It is very simple and direct, like, “hey, you can find these boat wrecks and harvest it for gold”, “this plant will produce this fruit” and things like that.

Then I have two basic drafts of campaigns.
One is a “town tier” mission, like what we already have, but this will be about your port and sea commerce. Probably will work the same way too, like you reach tier 2 and unlock a few things.
The other will be something along the lines of someone (probably the guy from the introduction guide) coming and telling that he found some ancient artifact, giving it to you. Later a pirate attacks your town for your “treasure”. Once defeated, he apologize, and you discover that he was cursed or something and he didn’t wanted your gold, but the magic artifact, which you later give it to him, healing him and making a new friend, unlocking some more things.

Not commenting on the actual art itself, but rather some “higher” requirements.

Personally, I find most of the voxel characters either indistinguishable, or never raised enough interest for me to try to distinguish them. To be frank, all the in-game hearthling portraits are probably replaced by some grey icon in my head: this is not done consciously though, just the way it turns out. It is certainly way less effective than say a usual 3d char model or even a 2d illustration. If I am given a test to recognize hearthling faces, I would probably score 0 except when I make lucky random guesses.

Perhaps part of it is due to the limitations of voxels to how it “blurs” distinguishing visual factors to the brain?

But one thing I feel needed for an important NPC etc is recognizability. He/she doesn’t have to be pretty (though it would be nice) but should be damn well recognizable the instant you see the portrait. (e.g. if I had to examine the portrait to recognize other distinguishing factors one by one, I’ll say it doesn’t meet the mark.) The problem here is that the voxel representation is a big hurdle to overcome…

Don’t get me wrong though, I am all in support of the ideas above. Just voicing a concern I feel myself as an “average” player. The challenge here (to artists/modellers) perhaps would be a broader problem than just creating one character: but rather: how to make voxel faces more … distinguishable.

Two words:

fancy. hat.

I don’t personally have the same problem with recognising the voxel faces, except when the generator spits out a bunch of identical ones; but that’s just down to how I recognise faces. Different people perceive facial features in slightly different ways, so yeah there are probably a lot of players out there who have trouble differentiating one set of square eyes and no-nose from another…

For me, the hair and facial hair is a major factor; which only works because I look at their head as a whole. Without that hair though, there’s only like 3 features on the face to begin with. Ironically, it’s easier to identify the goblins or kobolds because their faces have all kinds of distinguishing marks (including tattoos, but I’m thinking about the teeth and different noses and so on).

So, giving the characters memorable hats is a great way to make them instantly recognisable. It’s fortunate that this particular character has some obvious options in that regard (whether piratical, an “admiralty” tricorn, or a more classical sailor hat); although an eyepatch would accomplish the same thing.

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yeah… I guess we need to rely on those external factors which are more recognizable. as long as not every body else wears hats (which would go back to square one).

kinda reminded me of lego minifigurines. The “head” pieces can usually be grouped into highly similar types that are hard to distinguish among themselves, but if we add “hats/hair” and “cloths”, suddenly they are more recognizable.

That’s actually another good approach. Depending on the art it could even be better then the 3d voxels. The only problem is it gets out of the game standards (3d voxel portraits).

agreed with this… torn between having a consistent style vs making something more intuitive for the brain.

Perhaps a middle-ground, 2d hand drawn pseudo-voxel art? the overall style retaining some block-like outlines, but can be selectively warped/soften by hand-drawing (e.g. lines may be slightly curved to provide a softer look, but not enough to break the “block style”)?

kinda hard to describe, and I am not good enough of an artist to provide a visual example…

Basically like Allie’s original title screen style?

yes! that’s what meant, though I totally missed the blatantly obvious existing source… LOL… I must be blind…

Shit, sorry, got caught up in my first week of school and homework… glad to see there’s more response

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No need to hurry. It will not break the game or something :stuck_out_tongue:

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Well, I’ve been trying to make something like this fellow;

But as it turns out, I really can’t do a wide brim hat like that -.-


I feel your pain, everything I tried looked like a messy pile of voxels :sweat_smile:

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I’ll give it another stab when I’m less frustrated (stupid homework)