This thread is for my design mentoring group and is primarily for the following unlucky people who have expressed an interest;
You should all post your work in this thread, where I can take a look and give you my advice and where the other’s in the group can also take a look and learn from each other. You can post your work as you go along or if you have any specific questions, and of course try to hit the main Deadlines, one of the most important workplace skills is being reliable .
Here we go with the first concept design project. I’m going to keep it as close to the real process used in the game industry, but with the some of the pooh bits taken out .
We are going to do all the projects in the following 3 steps;
Concept, research and idea creation.
Design, idea iteration and concept presentation.
Presentation, illustrating and presenting the final concept.
Project 1 Sci-Fi Weapon.
Step 1, Concept.
This weapon if for a science fiction First Person Shooter game, an FPS, it is a player weapon and as such is a very important design piece. A couple of things to keep in mind is the primary view of the weapon will be rear ¾ perspective from the gun holders perspective, and the weapon should have an interesting reload animation if possible.
The overall setting, theme and style is similar to the Aliens franchise, specifically the 4th one Alien Resurrection.
Half way through the game the player has to go to a penal colony, this penal colony is set on a harsh desert island surrounded by acid seas, the only structure’s on the island are for the colony administration and off limits to the inmates. As the player explores the level he will come across the Riot Gun used by the guards to control the inmates. The Riot Gun is intentionally designed to look as intimidating as possible, the nastier the better. The Riot Gun has 2 modes of firing, the primary mode shoots a wide short range blast designed to kill and incapacitate many targets, the secondary mode of firing is a non lethal electric blast used to render people unconscious within a 5m arc. The Riot Gun also has a probe that sticks out the front of the gun and is a ‘cattle’ prod for inmate management.
Time, 7 days to delivery, you should post your work by 17th November, you should indicate which of your concepts you think are the strongest and which one you want to move forward with. You can deliver your concepts in whatever format you desire as long as it illustrates the concepts sufficiently.
What to do and where to begin???.
So how do you begin a task like this? First step is to do some research especially if you haven’t been given any to start with which is an unfortunately common experience. After re-reading the brief and keeping the requirements in mind start gathering references, start with the easy stuff with the most relevance in this case it would be looking for shogun’s, assault guns and riot guns, but also expand the search into other areas because this can bring new ideas and fresh thinking into your designs, for example the brief calls for a very intimidating look you might want to look at other things that have intimidating looks, power tools, medieval torture implements, insects, just keep an open mind.
Below is an example of what I would expect to be delivered, this example took under a day, and should have included many more sketch’s but as it was for a personal project I could afford to come up with fewer ideas…
My brief was to design the standard military rifle for a game set in the future, the game as a unique neo Victorian aesthetic, so I started out gathering my references in 3 category’s, real world rifles, sci-fi rifles and because of the neo Victorian influence I looked at old muskets and rifles.
With my reference search complete I combine and condense my images into the core reference sheets which I refer back to if I run out of ideas or struggling to detail out design. So having already narrowed my scope before getting to paper I start sketching ideas out, at this stage it’s not important to nail a good design it’s about getting as many ideas down as possible, worry about if there any good later.
After sketching the ideas down and with the time up or inspiration depleted it’s time to look at what you came up with, take a look at the designs see if any jump out at you, see if certain elements feel good and might work better with elements from other sketches, with this example I circled all the elements I liked in pink and then started to flesh these out a little more, now I have 3 distinct concepts that I’m happy with and I can present them as my Concepts ready for review.
And now I'm ready for stage 2.