I’m definitely going to focus on the technical side of my development this semester, so I began looking up cool images of props and locations i’d love to create. Over the past 3 years, I’ve shied away from rural design, because of the scale of difficulty and lack of experience I have creating it. But no more! I collated images of rural environments to start my inspirational journey.
(Images from fineartamerica, travelphotoadventures, wallpapersup)
The above images show serene, tranquil scenes. The colours are all very saturated, adding an ethereal quality to the images making them seem almost imagined and mystical. For the tone of an undiscovered forest, filled with hidden secrets and undisturbed history, a mysterious and bright tone is essential.
(Images from reddit, pinterest and doliferight)
Another set of images with ideas that would be cool to implement. The train is old, derailed, rusted and used as a bridge over a river. The amount of time that would’ve taken; the need for a bridge and the resourcefulness of the locals; it all adds up for great storytelling. The bridge is coated in a thin mist, veiling the track in an otherworldly, pale tone. It adds a sense of the unknown, mystery and fear. Again, these emotions and responses are vital for immersion in game environments.
I visited an old factory before returning for summer in Dundee called William Halley & Sons LTD on Arbroath road.
(Photo from the Courier, 2012)
It was an old factory built in 1836 as a spinning mill, but was repurposed as a jute mill,and re-named to William Halley & Sons during the American Civil War. As of 2004, it had closed and become abandoned and fell into degradation. Over the past 11 years, the mill has been graffitied, burgled, broken and left to nature. The paint has began to strip, rust has set in, and it looks like a fantastic place to explore. The amount of belongings from homeless people, the remains of the jute, and the objects lost and left behind by explorers will all give a unique narrative to the history of the building and its past from the last 11 years.
It got me thinking that there must be games with levels like this, filled with history and set dressing that make the player make up their own history, without being spoon-fed a story. The Last of Us (2013) & Tomb Raider (2013) were very good at this, Tomb Raider less so, but you could piece together story elements yourself through exploration. I’d really like to explore this route through my experimentation.