I most recently asked Ryan to take a stab at the monsters themselves. I’ve always drawn them thusly:

Thin arms, legs like tree trunks, nothing like a chin. I took Ryan off the leash (I had been very specific about how I wanted the main characters to look) and let him try whatever he wanted. I’d rather go too far and reign in than tread carefully. He did not disappoint (he never does).

He tried a lot of different stuff. I do especially like how the feet have become talon’d. A good sense of scale and skull. And the thin legs and height are something incredibly appealing. We’ll be looking at the next batch soon; I think monsters of this style are more capable of showing menace, though they do a lot more than menace people. To check how this style gels with the character art in the game, I took it on myself to pixelize one of his drawings (still unshaded):

It looks right out of Sam & Max Hit The Road. The old art I drew fits with the character sprites, but may be less versatile. This uses the exact same palette, which mightn’t be the best decision, nor the decision to use an outline. This looks really good but I’m not convinced it will work with our chosen aesthetic. We’ll be trying a lot of different things with the monsters, from both their conception and how they are rendered in pixels. I document only to show a record: at some point, we were here.


Random fact: this year, three adventure games were submitted to the IGF: The Blackwell Convergence, Resonance, and PuzzleBots. I rarely see adventure games submitted, though last year’s Excellence In Art winner was Machinarium. Maybe it’s time to blow the lid off this beast; if all goes according to schedule, we’ll be entered in next year’s IGF. Though, really, what award would an adventure game get nominated for? Design? Nuovo?


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