Tuesday, June 13, 2023

A new milestone

Today I painted the last backdrop for Nighthawks. This milestone has been a long time coming - largely due to the fact that I have been working quite busily on Old Skies while Richard finished putting the actual game together - but it still feels good to reach this point. I still have a few touch-ups, and map screens, and vignettes and things, but every milestone reached in a game's development always feels like a nice accomplishment.

This has been a fascinating project to paint for, quite different to what I'm familiar with and filled with the normal education that such a project brings. I think both Richard and I would do everything completely differently if we had our times again, but that's true of every project. I think his very polite feedback helped me to gather some semblance of cohesion in background styles, despite my approaches varying an impossible amount, and I think my focus on painting atmospheric scenes with moody lighting suits his approach to this world pretty well. I could easily spend another year cleaning up and polishing up the scenes in this game, but I would find that very boring, nobody would want to pay me for that, and it honestly wouldn't change how the scenes work in game that much at all.

I used a lot of coloured lighting, thick atmosphere and the idea of texture to try and sell our vision of the city. Many of the scenes have quite large amounts of both pure black and pure white. There are areas of the game with more magenta than anybody has probably ever seen me paint. It's been fun, while also being the normal amount of hard work, and anxious uncertainty, and "Gosh, why can't we make a smaller game" and "Why can't I make all of the scenes look as good as the good scenes?"

I'm posting a few of the scenes that I still enjoy looking at here. I've shown them off before, but not much on this blog, so now you can see some of the scenes I like to go back and look at without all of the text and portraits that normally bring them to life.

A view over the city's rooftops

Inside Cygnus Rare Books

The queue outside Nighthawks

Bikers hanging out at their local bar

A magic shop in the Lapis district

1 comment:

Ben304 said...

Thank you very much! Looking forward to seeing people explore this world. :D