How we turn an idea into a living and breathing design.
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Creating a Legendary Character

When we were first approached by N3TWORK in 2016, we knew that it was going to be a perfect match. They were about to launch their first title "Legendary | Game of Heroes", a strategic puzzle RPG where you can build a team of heroes and fight enemies. We thought it was perfect because we are specialised in character design and we love fantasy! After designing a few characters for them, we knew that it's going to be a long ride with them. They were so fun to work with and their character briefs were just amazing. They also knew what they wanted really well so it made the process much more easier for us.

Like every art piece we create, there is a long process behind every character we design as well. Below you'll find the break down of a battle mech we created for Legendary (Which was named "Bulava" after) back in 2018. This was super fun to do so we wanted show how this mech came to life. Hope you enjoy!

Initial sketching

It all starts with an idea. We always receive a written brief from N3TWORK supported by reference images, roughly explaining the idea of the character. It's usually quite straight forward so our artists take this and start sketching some initial ideas. We try to be very loose at this stage and just play around with general shapes and proportions as well as some design ideas. After the first round of sketching, we send it off and wait for feedback.

Cleaned up sketch

With the first feedback, we usually receive an altered sketch from the Art Director at N3TWORK explaining how we should proceed. Our artists take this and creates a cleaned up, more detailed version of it. Depending on the artists style this could either be a line art or a value sketch. In this case, we do a detailed line art and finalise the design. Next up is colouring...

Coloured sketch

Before sending the detailed sketch off for the second round of feedback, we add the values and colours. In this stage, we try to setup the lighting as well. We usually try to make the lighting quite neutral as we don't know the environments they are going to be displayed on yet. In this case, we presented three options and the one on the right was chosen. Now it's time for the final render and delivery.

Final character and in-game art

After the approval of the coloured line art, we go ahead and render it to a polished state. How we deliver the artwork is quite important though. After delivery, the talented animators at the N3TWORK HQ take the artwork and animate it so it looks awesome in game. So we chop the character into animatable pieces. Any part that we think that can be animated (which includes arms, legs, fabrics, cape, etc.), we separate it and place it on it's own layer. Last step is cleaning up the psd and delivery. You can see the final in-game card on the left.

Hope you liked this break down. Send us a message and let us know if you want to see anything specific. We would love to hear from you. Piece! - Mooncolony Team