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May 19th, 2011 #1
C.O.W. #213. Game Critter Quadruped (and variants) - Wips Thread
cow rules post 200.jpg
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ROUND #213 - Game Critter Quadruped (and variants)
ROUND#213 - Game Critter Quadruped
This week I want to focus on variants in creature design. Today you will be designing a quadrupedal creature that would be present as an enemy in a third-person action game. But not just one creature, rather 3 versions of that same creature. Each version will represent a different distinct level in the game. You have the option of choosing any 3 levels from the list below. The creature’s design should remain ultimately the same for the 3 variants, but should be distinctly recognizable as creatures for each specific level. The levels are:
- Lava world
- The Ice Cavern
- The Poisoned Marsh
- The Temple of Shadows
- The Graveyard
This piece should focus on the design of the creature, thus the focus is exclusively to create the creature and it’s variants NOT an illustration. Much like a design sheet, your backgrounds should not extend far beyond drop-shadows. Beyond the creature being quadrupedal the design is up to you. Just bear in mind that we're looking for a monster for a game.
MAY 25th 9:00pm PST (GMT -8 )
finals go here...
Last edited by Si_Swe; May 19th, 2011 at 02:55 AM.
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May 19th, 2011 #2
Very cool topic Si!
I notice the title says Game Critter 'Quadruped'. Guadruple being 4, yet the description says to come up with 3 various designs. Does this mean to do 1 original design and then 3 variations?
Blackball23, tsad - yeah that makes sense, thanks for clearin that one up lol.
Heres my sketchy idea, just trying to get the basic idea down before making it match different themes.
Last edited by warburton; May 19th, 2011 at 10:02 AM. Reason: update
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May 19th, 2011 #3Registered User
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Quadruped is referring to the number of legs the monster is supposed to have. The majority of all animals are quadrupeds , with few exceptions.
May 19th, 2011 #4
yeah. so by 'quadruped' i think he meant the creature/s to have four feet/legs -and walks in fours, but in 3 variants..
nice topic! i think im in
May 19th, 2011 #5
Another neat topic! Just the kind of stuff you'd be doing in the field of conceptart! Definitly in this round.
May 19th, 2011 #6
May 19th, 2011 #7
Thank you to Blackball21 and tsad for clarifying.
To be clear:
The idea is to end up with 3 creatures. Their overall design should remain the same, but they should work as distinct representations of their "level" in the game. And yes, the creature should be quadrupedal, meaning it should use 4 limbs for locomotion.
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Rough sketch of my idea. Still toying with the design of the head, not sure if I should keep it cat-like. I'm definitely going for the ice variation, I'm torn between the other choices.
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May 19th, 2011 #9
Very nice topic. I've started out with a poisoned marsh variant, with some kind of alien rhino-thing.
Not sure what other variations to go for yet. I shall take a break and ponder over this.
logistic puppet - Nice creepy idea there Looks like it'd suit the darker themes, but then again, you could really go for anything.
Ah yes Si_Swe, forgot that point! Here's the revised version;
Last edited by Jää; May 19th, 2011 at 06:57 PM.
May 19th, 2011 #10
Jää - Remember, this is not an illustration. Little to no background, please. The creature should stand on it's own to represent the level.
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May 19th, 2011 #11
Yes! let the madness begin again! Never-ending monsters forever. I'm getting an early start this time. Great topic; I love that there is some real structure to the assignment without the requirments for the design being too specific- lots of wiggle room.
Thanks again to everybody who participated last time: it gives me lots of food for thought.
May 19th, 2011 #12
thanks for forcing me to do no background -cough cough-. i think i might be the reason you guys keep mentioning that lately. no bg would save me ooooodles of time and force me to focus more on developing my beasts. so, gracias, 谢谢.
since my lenovo thinkpad r400 (don't ever buy this computer) is in the shop for a busted monitor (flickers dramatically every 10 seconds, internal laptop monitor issue, manufactoring bs), i'll be doing this one with traditional media (most likely guache or oil). i had to paint that faberge dragon with that flicker goin on, btw.
here are my efforts so far. toying with the Graveyard - Temple - Lava Hell route (thinking Diablo fandom) with these guys:
and thinking more "Aquaman, meet thy Nemesis!" (swamp - atlantis - ice) with these:
right now still trying to figure out the base creature design, after which i'll brainstorm how to adapt him to the varying environments. thinking to make the creature actually use the environment, like with direction that games are going these days. in diablo the hero can break down walls and bridges now, starcraft similar as well. going to try and focus on fun gameplay ability - what makes him dangerous, what makes him hard to kill, and what would make me like to see him in a game (or rather hate cause he's so troublesome to kill).
good luck everyone! this one should be both and fun useful for portfolios.
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May 19th, 2011 #13
Quick question! can the 3 vary i size and power as well as elemental traits?
Similaril to the way the grenchlers and Grapple Gurdian vary from Metroid Prime 2
May 19th, 2011 #14
May 19th, 2011 #15
I'll probably do something along the line of these rough sketches. The creature holds the element of the level in its rib cage (ex: burning coals for the lava level/ bones and human remains for the graveyard level). The skin colour and texture will differ depending on the environmental conditions of the level.
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May 19th, 2011 #16
some ideas for my next cow, throwing up some tighter sketches soon. My critter will be a scavanger and burrower that hunts for decomposing stuff, fungus and other smelly things. I'd love some feedback. Great start so far everybody
@Pat Thompson- digging the tusked lizard head, also the rhino looking one shows some promise. Try playing with the proportions more, some of the sketches have more mood than others. The Hyena looking creatures are a little uninteresting, but they communicate a mood really nicely.
@Jaa- i'd like to see some variants of the design/ some sketches or silhouettes or something. The painting is coming along great, but I wonder if your settling on it before getting to some of your best ideas?
@Pluttes- I could see that thing lookin mondo-cool as undead... sweet sketch so far. Same as Jaa; i wanna pick ur brain, show us more of your early ideas!
@logisticPuppet- The jesture of the monster makes it look like its creepin' around in a neat way, looks like a promising idea. More please?
@kleeWyck- Love the sideways venus flytrap head, that things expression seriously made me crack up! So for your ideas about swapping the contents of the critter's stomach for the different themes, take it a little farther than that. How might the creature have to have adapted to thrive in its level environment?
can't wait to see more!
Last edited by ChromaticCodex; May 20th, 2011 at 12:41 AM.
May 19th, 2011 #17
Some great initial sketches guys! logistic puppet lol, i feel like im supposed to have a staring contest with it, anyone else feel like its trying not to blink? hahaha thats awesome, sorry just had to say it.
also if anyone decides to do lots of drapey vine things, i dont know if we are supposed to design a plausable creature for 3d (which is my guess), id watch out for those drapery items, no one will love you if they had to mess with all of that. while fun to use in designs, not so much fun for 3d side of it.
anywho i figure ill throw in the first previews of my idea so far. I figure a ramming/trampling hulk of a beast.
May 19th, 2011 #18
@chromaticcodex: ? ...u might want to change my name to somebody else, cuz I didn't post any sketches yet
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May 20th, 2011 #19
Opps :X thanks, i meant Pat Thompson, edited.
May 20th, 2011 #20
Hey, ChromaticCodex, I got some digital sketches you can comment on!! ^^
Game critter Quadriped thumbs.jpg
These are all just very rough, the 3 on the left have some good potential, as well as Grubby Grubbington!! lol, jut put in a random name that matched the creature so I can cycle through the layers much easier if you were wondering.....
I have some better pencil sketches of the clawed rex, I just drew this up quickly on ps to show you guys the basic design.
Sleek slippery amphibian is just a really quick basic idea that is in desperate need of some extra features and creativity.
Not too happy with the skinny tusked runner design, once again I have a pencil sketch of a creature with a similar design that looks much better.
I will upload some pencil sketches later, so I can get some more feedback.
I'm really liking the Graveyard idea...1 word, ZOMBIES!!! The marsh also seems like a good theme....each environment has a lot of potential, it'll be hard to choose just three.
I really like the openess (if that's a word) of this topic as well! A lot o room for creativity.
May 20th, 2011 #21
@chromaticCodex: thanks for the crit. I like the rhino guy as well, but the first guy with the mood sparked my new idea for the creatures premise, and i don't think the rhino would fit into the new concept. Although technically, it could, since my new concept might eat him and use his body... hmm...
on yours: funky mole idea, but how can you make him more than just a mole? think about what else has been done for underground beasts, and one-up it. There's Tremors with Kevin Bacon. There's the Ant Lions from HL2. Then think about how he can attack from his place of strength - tenacles? digging traps? the ol' grab the ankles trick? think of how it will play in the game, and let that guide your muse.
figured out my creature's premise:
Heroes beware, and watch your back (or rather the trail of bodies you leave behind), for the ghoulish Devourer lurks amongst the cliffs, trees, and behind tombstones and temple pillars. If it hears the cries of the dying, it will begin to crawl as though a demonic spider down to the trail of corpses you leave behind. As it consumes the deceased' flesh (be they human, zombie, demon, angel, or monster), it will merge itself onto it as though a parasite, consuming it slowly from the outside. While it digests, it wraps it tendrils around the corpse, animating it and using it for its own evil purposes. When combines with the physical strenghts of the fallen, it becomes a formidable foe.
gameplay - if you see these things coming out of the woodworks, kill it before it completes merging with the corpses of your enemies. Once it completes a merging, it becomes a much more powerful foe, especially if the fallen was particularily nasty - such as a demon or fallen angel. (to sum it up, think Venom on cannibal zombie crack, with a flair for the demonic)
I've chosenhis three shapes: Temple of Shadows - Fallen Angel Devourer; Poisoned Marsh - Ungoliant's (LotR Spider Demon) Spawn Devourer; Graveyard - Abomination Devourer.
@Logistic Puppet: cool beastie so far. Interesting idea, nice weak spot, though he looks hella hard to kill with that long reach. At first I thought he'd be a smaller jumper, though, like a demon flea. Make sure to get super creative with his variations.
@pluttes: liking the style and feel of your lion king guy, however try to keep him looking a bit more different than a regular stylized lion. is the head gonna be kinda komodo dragon-like? that might be cool. looking forward to seeing some more heads of yours, you've got great linework with a nice flow and style to them.
kleewyck: nice work on the creativity of the belly aspect. not so sure about his head though. looks too "ahh! real monsters!" for me (anyone remember that cartoon on nickelodeon? ). Can't wait to see some arms and heads popping around inside your beastie.
doctor digits: nice critter. I think many people will go a similar route though, just with slightly different anatomy and head changes. i forsee many lava cracks in legs, moss on backs, etc. what else can you do to your creature to make him fit in with the level - or even use the level? what makes him so cool that the designers wanted him in three levels? think about his attacks, and how the hero will have to use his brain to overcome him, and maybe this will help your beast stand out from the crowd.
rob powell: clawed rex is my favorite out of these guys. grubbs is cool too, but what changes will he go through? earlier i was thinking an evolving creature, like a baby in the marsh, teenager in the ...., and adult in the .... - so maybe he grows up? that'd be interesting. also liking the horned charger. chargers are freaky in games. what changes will the rex go through? i'd brainstorm on each change and then decide where to go from there.
May 20th, 2011 #22
Some inspiration from some of the oddest animals you could think of encountering.
May 20th, 2011 #23
Working out some tighter sketches. Might refine these some more, or do one more batch. A. Graveyard B. Poisoned Marsh C. Ice Cavern
A large scavenger in any environment, this creature uses its extremely sensitive olfactory to locate decaying animals, once finding a meal, they often defend the spot with their lives.
A. Encroaching on civilization, this monster is infamous for rooting up the recently deceased for a free meal.
B. Sometimes stumbled across in the putrid poisoned marsh this monster is adapted to digging through muck and rotting organic matter for corpses, smaller scavengers and fungi. They will occasionally go for a fresh meal if a suitable target happens by their watery hiding spot.
C. This enormous scavenger wanders the frozen planes in search of long frozen animals, delighting in the spring thaw, when these corpses are the ripest. It lairs during the coldest months by digging massive ice caverns creating habitat for many other species.
May 20th, 2011 #24
May 20th, 2011 #25
May 20th, 2011 #26
Some great ideas floating about here - I'll add my feedback in a few hours when I have time to make a proper job of it.
Edit - feedback as promised;
pluttes - Nice sinuous shapes in your design. Looks promising.
Pat Thompson - Great variety to your designs! My favourites are those which are simpler, like the hyena and rhino (for lack of better names). Just personal preference - lots of teeth and spikes and claws can look quite generic imo, and don't read that well. Get a really simple but effective silhouette, and everything else should fall into place.
KleeWyck - I think your change to the head was a good move; it was just a bit -too- bizarre before My only suggestion would be to adjust the body shape a bit. Right now, the head is that for a predator, and the body that of a large grazing animal, like a Brachiosaurus. Although, that could work if it was a large scavenger, in a place where carrion is easy to come by, ie: graveyard.
ChromaticCodex - I'm really liking these designs - they're not too otherworldly to look weird, but they're certainly unique. My concern (not a criticism, though), is.... are they too different? To quote the brief "the creature’s design should remain ultimately the same for the 3 variants". Now, it's difficult to judge exactly how similar they should be. If Si_Swe is fine with them, then obviously you're good to go
DoctorDigits - A great design that I'm sure could be adapted to any one of the six level choices. The pose itself, to me, looks pretty awkward. Mainly because of the front legs, which are both facing inwards. Perhaps change the left leg so it's overall direction is corresponding with the upraised one, so it would appear much straighter. Hard to describe really... I always find some rough experimentation and flipping of the canvas can help with such things.
Rob Powell - You have some good varied concepts there. I'm definitely favouring the alternate head for the Goblin Dog. Actually I like the bottom four equally - you could make any of them work well with the brief.
Okay, I've decided to go for ice cavern and shadow temple as my other environments. Not sure how much difference is allowed between the designs, so I'm keeping them very similar. Some rough work to give an idea of where I'm thinking of heading with these two -
Shadow temple one is going to be a mount for the priests, therefore it'll have armour and the like. All C+C welcome.
ChromaticCodex - I have to confess I only did about two other super rough designs, then went for this one. Just keeping it simple for now, so I can tweak them individually for each level variation.
Last edited by Jää; May 20th, 2011 at 12:54 PM.
May 20th, 2011 #27
Hey there, you guys are kicking it already! madness!
Logistic Puppet, funny insect thingy haha! basic sketch looking good so far. Hope you don't mind me adding some thoughts.
-3/4 view, you need to paint in some more of his behind to match the sideview sketch.
-eyes.Think you should explore some eye variations, being an insect you can play around with a lot of designs, multiple eyes and different type of pupils.
-design. Explore more elements, just small things like spikes/outgrowths etc. to enhance its design. Base these details on the 3 different environments. Have fun!
Pluttes, strong foundation you got there! now explore variations on the design with environments in consideration!
jää, for some reason I always think you're swedish when I read your name haha. Really like the colours in your concepts so far! looking forward to see you push them.
Pat Thompson, arh! Diablo! sweet I like the top sketch the most. Having your creature not only live in, but use its environment is a good idea.
KleeWyk, I like the whole "environment inside body" concept, cool idea!
Chromatic, cool sketches man! gonna be fun to see where you bring it. I liked number 4 the most in your first sketches, I think you should explore that design as well. The new ones are looking really good.
Rob Powell, nice sketches! I like the rex and charger the most! gonna be fun to see how you vary them. The Rex still looks bipedal though so think of the design before you render.
DoctorDigits, hope you don't mind me doing this. I'd like to point something out in your concept you need to fix.
I did a quick paintover to show what I'm aiming at. Try to pose your own arm the way you want your creature to walk and notice how it feels and how the joints bend.
Also, I'd suggest you dont paint in the veins before you've filled in the basic sketch. Try to have a process that works from big to small,
in a grayscale case:
2 block in the values; shadows and lights
3. Work on the big shapes, defining form
4. this is where you start adding details like the veins!
5. further refinement.
These are just process guidelines, gain some experience and find something that you're comfortable with. If you feel like doing details early then go ahead. But be prepared to work extra if you need to correct something
*edit* just noticed the joints of the front arms bend outwards instead of backwards kinda like reptile anatomy. If thats the case, you don't have to change the angle of the foot that much. Pose your arms and see how the feet should bend. Cheers.
got some ideas, exploring thumbs for now. Finding a basic design first before building it around three of the environments. More to come!
Last edited by DefiledVisions; May 20th, 2011 at 01:00 PM.
May 20th, 2011 #28
gah, i'm so bad at this....
here's a rough wip of the mildy venomous swampbeest... weakest critter in the game
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May 20th, 2011 #29
Rob Powell im digging the top left and bottom left designs
ChromaticCodex im digging the designs but i think jaa is right, you have to look at it and be able to tell its same creature, same anatomy and look, just small differences on how it adapted itself to the environment
jää ya just look at games, on how the overall design remains the same just usually small adaptations and color scheme changes with different texture maps
DefiledVisions like both your initials, im really feeling the massive one over the slim one though so far, your stuff always looks great so either way you go should be pretty sick
83rd Dream haha its ok, practice practice practice. be sure to spread out his upper body he looks very thin, try spreading his legs out a bit, check out some pics of deer, caribuu, any of those type things, they need to have a good center of gravity to make them feel like they got bulk and weight, reference always helps
Haha, ya jaa and defiled, you guys are right, ill have to fix that stuff. I did it while sleepy, i always miss stuff and render too fast when that happens :/
totally appreciate that paintover defiled, makes sense
Ill prob continue that piece as a personal project, ima start pumping out some different ideas other than just some hulking beast
Last edited by DoctorDigits; May 20th, 2011 at 01:25 PM.
May 20th, 2011 #30
Thanks for the feedback guys. Sorry I haven't posted my own feedback but I will do soon
Based on everyone's preferences and mine the Rex wins. Already started drawing meaner looking head.
@DefiledVisions: I was thinking the same about the design looking too bipedal, will have to rework it.
Can a creature have six limbs but still be a quadruped? As long as four limbs are used for movement?