Sunday, 26 February 2012

* Victoria VS Character design

What gives a character “character”? 
Visuals are the clearest way to represent something.
I'm going to write my post about the visual side of character design and instances in where the visual design of a character has provoked me.

Victoria Vs Character design.

African american cop  

I know everyone moans about character stereotypes and how cliche they are.  I will defend them because there are instances where they work well. Character stereotypes can be a good thing, depending on the genre of the game.

This is Isaac Washington. How many times have you seen this guy? you instantly have that feeling of familiarity with him. He is a stereotype, you've seen him before.

Take an on the rails shooter, House of the dead overkill is a great example of when stereotypes work well. The aim of the game is shoot and kill, shoot and kill. Just look at this guy. He screams stereotypical African American cop. The relation to this character is instant there is no mystery. It works for this type of game. My thoughts were “ I know you, ive seen you 1000 times before, now lets shoot the heads off some mutants. Straight to the action.

Good visual design. Very cliche but Suitable for this game.

Metroid box art

When the game cube came out , the memory's (wipes tears from eye) It came bundled with this game that I had never heard of before. Metroid Prime and the first thing I saw was the box art.

I thought cyborg, lads game, no thank you.

I found this game in the bargain bin a year later and I picked it up for my man friend. I played it, The main character was called Samus Aran, not really a gender specific name. I loved this game, The cyborg took its helmet off at the end revealing a blonde woman.

The point is the visuals of the character made me associate it with something it was not. 

Good/Bad visual design, this game is now in my personal top 10 the character worked well within the game, it fit but I could have experineced it sooner.

Resi 4 shopkeeper

In a survival horror game when enemies come from the shadows with axes and whatnot you have to react quickly as to avoid being hacked to death and seeing the dreaded “game over” screen.

The problem with the visual design of the shopkeeper or merchant is that it was very similar to some of the reoccurring enemies in this game.

The shopkeeper in resi 4 served the purpose of letting you cash in treasure you had found in exchange for weapons etc. at least I would have if I hadn't kept shooting him on sight.
The times I killed the shopkeeper before I had the chance to cash in my treasure for some goodies/weapons was one to many not to be annoying.

Bad visual design . Non playable characters..... there is no clear difference between the shopkeeper in resident evil and a hooded enemy that must be decapitated on sight.

The reaccuring death of Tim Westwood, The reaccuring death of Tim Westwood

Relating to a character in a game is a pleasant experience. Especially if they look like someone you know. Its Tim Westwood or “Westwood the big dawg” as he's known in the hood.

Disc jokey/ gangster wannabe Tim Westwood.

Now look at the zombie/mutant below, see a resemblance? This particular “reoccurring enemy” is known as “Tim Westwood” in our house. I understand that not everyone would make the association between Mr westwood and said mutant.

Tim Westwood, and who's that behind him? Its Tim Westwood again...... I tilt the gun sideways to kill him “gangster style” its what he would have wanted.I can relate to this character because I have made an association between his flailing zombie arm movements and the "I.m a gangster innit" arm movements of Tim Westwood.

Good Visual design. Classic. You  kill him, he come's back and lets be honest no one will ever get tired of killing Tim Westwood.

Image sources.

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