This blog represents the artistic side of the upcoming projects from SND Games that are currently under development. All content shown
should be considered a work-in-progress. All feedback regarding gameplay should be directed to the main blog of SND Games.
This blog is not monitored for gameplay-related comments and they may either go unapproved or unanswered.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Week #033: Community Impact, Transformed

Unfortunately, no, it isn't yet time to begin with the starters. I'm glad to see the poll getting enough hits to make it interesting, though, and I'm sure it'll just continue to pick up as we move along. You guys really seem to like the mythical starters! and it seems you really want to see the dark starters revealed as well.

What I am here to deliver, is what was asked about what I get up to when I'm not working.

Some weeks ago, I founded an "Alphabet Challenge" with a friend of mine. I believe this was just after I got over a cold and I was looking to ignite my artistic fire once more. The challenge was simple: draw a character for each letter of the alphabet, though we had the option of deciding on our own secondary themes as well (for example: for a bit I considered doing all Mega Man characters, and later considered all females).

These three are only the first three (A, B and C for those playing along at home) in the challenge, which are unfortunately all I've made time for so far.

If there's enough interest in these, I'll be sure to post the next three once I get back to the project.

In other news, there's a pretty amazing community movement happening over at the SEGA forums. Challenged by a developer from Sumo Digital, the studio behind Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed (which is a game you should really look into if you like racers!), the community has assembled a large cast of petitions in an effort to show their support for a strong DLC presence to be made in the game. If you're a SEGA fan, whether it be classic or modern, I strongly encourage you to get involved and sign a few petitions to show your support for characters like Vectorman, Ristar, Bayonetta and many others! The movement is doing well, but they're looking for it to do even better before it's December 1st deadline.

It should be no surprise that I support such a movement with how much we here at SND Games like to involve our own community!

That's about it for this week, but I'll see you all again soon.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Week #032: So Many Starters and So Little Time

Oh, hey, I remember you guys.

As I've been combating the rise and fall of my "art drive" over the last few weeks, I've been attempting to gear up for some updates I could actually post here. Last week (or so), someone asked if I could post some of the stuff I do in my free time as filler, so I'm looking to do both that and share some work from the project we're all hard at work on recently.

...which brings me to why I'm here, making this post! Unfortunately, I'm not ready to post anything just yet, but you know how I favor community feedback. Oh, yes, it's that time again...

Project ANPO Starters - Who's On First?

My time has been largely spent polishing up the many designs we have (now over 140!) for use in the game. Some of these are as simple as pulling the designs from other artists into the one consistent style. Others are as complicated as taking something extremely vague and making something interesting out of it. It's a challenging job, but one that I volunteered for to show my commitment towards making the game as flavorful as we all dream.

As I had been working on polishing these designs, I knew that I would one day have to take the art (what you've been seeing so far on Sam's blog in that distinctive monochrome sketch style) and finish them with full ink and color. This hasn't been a priority since they wouldn't be used for much more than promotional purposes... but promoting the game has to start at some point, right?

I've only three more starter families to go before I'm ready to start that process. So what I want to know is, who you want to see first! Some of them may be completed as you saw them on Sam's blog, but others may see varying levels of redesign and some may be redrawn completely, so there's sure to be plenty of progress shots to see.

As always, you can find the poll for CIP#003 off to the right of this very blog.

I'm looking forward to getting things going again here. I hope you are too!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Week #031: Time For A Change Of Pace

Stage One - Loose Sketch
A few weeks ago, while I was working on the basic interface elements for PTD2, I came to Sam with interest in doing a fancy title graphic. I roughed it out pretty quickly, and thought it would be fun to show the stages of the process here once it was done. Unfortunately, I clearly wasn't thinking and rendered all of these with transparencies enabled, so they might be hard to see here. Sorry! I can't really go back now.
Stage Two - Refined Sketch
I fleshed it further out pretty quickly after that. I chose the five that I did based on the first pokémon to be revealed per generation, though in some cases I picked those that were more iconic. For example, I think Machamp was one of the first ever to be revealed, but it seemed wrong to not include Pikachu.
Stage Three - Inked
After that, I got caught up in the development of Project ANPO for a little while. It wasn't until I finally invested in a much overdue tablet upgrade this past week that I came back to it, aiming to finally finish it up. Below you'll see the final version of it as it appears in the upcoming update to the game!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Week #030: Gemstone Dwarfs

Promotional concept artwork of Hugo and Trixie, the gemstone dwarf poster children.
Images represent a game currently in development.
Brave and burly, the Gemstone Dwarfs hail from cities of crystal grown on the water's surface. Using their mysterious ability to crystallize liquid matter through touch, they intricately craft their cities, expansive underwater mines, and can even walk on water!
Height roster in the game's discarded pre-alpha hand-drawn graphics style.
Images represent a game currently in development.
My philosophy while designing the dwarfs - as it is with anything these days - was breaking the mold. I feel that it's important for any media today to grab the viewer's attention with original ideas, and while games can also do this through unique mechanics, I feel that it's still important to explore these options from an artistic standpoint. I frequently feel that I wouldn't be doing my job if I wasn't.
Variations on dwarf appearance including hairstyles.
Images represent a game currently in development.
With the dwarfs, I sought to do this through both visual and character design. Most will still recognize them as the beloved stout warriors at a glance - like several of you did even from the early teasers. But when you dig deeper than that, you'll find that they're different from the usual mountain-dwellers.
Modeling sheet for the gemstone dwarfs.
Images represent a game currently in development.
I hope everyone enjoys this preview of the Gemstone Dwarfs coming soon to HTD! I'm currently looking into other methods of further exploring their background and just who they are as a race, so I hope you look forward to that, too.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Week #029: So Hum A Merry Tune

Development on ______ has been going slowly but steadily. It's a tricky thing, breathing life into a whole new race. Creating the human race for HTD was one thing, since there's really only one way to do humans in a game like this. But with other playable races, such as ______, I really wanted to find a way to make them new and exciting, while maintaining what everybody loves about the ______. This can be a difficult balance to strike, and I'm personally pleased with the results so far.

I'm really looking forward to working with some of the other race ideas that Evan, Josh and myself have had further down the line, too.

With progress breaching a third of the way complete on my end, I wanted to mark the occasion with an additional teaser. I won't keep this up too much longer; since I'm no longer creating the assets themselves, I really could have revealed the ______ a week ago. But where's the fun in that?

One thing I want to stress, as I mentioned, is that these progress trackers are only following my own progress, on the conceptual and character design levels. They don't speak for the development of the actual character models or in-game assets.

If you think that I've surely been up to more than this, though, you'd be correct. Sam has also brought me on board to build a cleaner interface for Pokémon Tower Defense 2! He plans to talk about the new interface this week himself, and I got clearance to offer up a preview to go along with it.

Images represent a game currently in development.
For those of you excited for PTD2, well, you should be! It isn't my place to reveal the details, but from what I've seen and heard, it should blow the first game away.

Oh, also, ______.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Week #027: Meanwhile, at SND Headquarters...

It sure has been a while. Again.

You can more or less prefer to my previous post on why things have been so slow lately. We're still hard at work to catch up to where we were before, but from what I've heard and seen, things are coming along nicely!

I was personally very happy with the vast amount of creative ideas everyone came up with in regards to pets. We haven't even had a chance to start going through to pick our favorites yet, but I can tell they're going to be a ton of fun to work with. But that doesn't mean that we're not still open to more ideas! Just be sure to direct such ideas back to that previous post, or wait for our next big call-out, to ensure that your ideas aren't lost in the shuffle.

Meanwhile, I thought I would take the time to share what the art team (we're a team now!) as a whole has been up to over the last few weeks.

Before Bill took his extended vacation, he was happy to lend his love for creatures to HTD. Sharing in my philosophy in regards to originality, however, he wasn't happy doing anything that might've been done before. This little guy unfortunately comes from before we decided on the change of direction in regards to the game's graphics, but the design will still see some life.

Images represent a game currently in development.
As for me - in between assisting Evan with the development of the new graphics - I've been working on creature designs of my own, including but not limited to the Reanimated Hero here. Most of the other things I've been working on are far too young in the development stages to be shown just yet, including my own "Project Endless", which is a story for another time...

Images represent a game currently in development.
As for the new graphics (can you tell I've been practicing my segue skills?), Evan has been hard at work getting the human males ready for action... again. It should be noted that this is a pretty early work-in-progress that was all I could grab at such short notice. For example, the final in-game graphics are still planned to be cel-shaded, and, you know... textured.

Images represent a game currently in development.
Another testament to my philosophy of originality comes from our newcomer, Josh. Spiders are one of those generic creatures that just makes me want to gouge at my eyes, and not because of arachnophobia. How out of ideas do you have to be? Spiders? You would never see giant flies as enemies (even though that would, by relation, make them an original idea). When Josh had the idea of a half-spider-half-octopus, though, of course I was quick to jump on board.

We hope you enjoyed this sneak peek at some of the ideas we've been working on for HTD! Hopefully once the new graphical system is in place, I'll be able to start bringing you more regular updates once again.