Hello fellow crawlers! This is Jason (handle “furiouscabbage” for those on twitter and elsewhere). I hope that these dev diaries are helping to provide some insight into our day-to-day work here at Juggernaut on StarCrawlers, and that this post is no exception.
My role on our team is to take our gorgeous 2D characters, and bring them to life in the game. After all, fighting static images doesn’t make for a lot of fun! StarCrawlers is somewhat unique from previous work by Juggernaut in the past, in that our characters are all two-dimensional, while the backgrounds are in 3D. Baffled? Confused? Fear not, as I hope to explain!
Meet ChargeBot. He’s into holding hands on the beach, helping out his buddies, and electrocuting you.
I begin by taking our 2D characters (broken up into separate pieces like a paper doll or bit of flash animation) and “projecting” them onto three-dimensional pieces of geometry.
Now, why work with 2D characters? Why not model them all in 3D like many other games? Well, that’s for a number of reasons. First, we’re aiming for a bit of a nostalgic feel with StarCrawlers, evoking first-person dungeon-crawling games from the past, which all consisted of two-dimensional sprites projected in a 3D environment. Additionally, StarCrawlers is being built to be as fast and efficient as possible in order to be played on multiple platforms. Third, making characters in this manner is much faster than building an entire model in 3D, even if you’re only going to be viewing it from the first-person perspective.
StarCrawlers is like this, but without a battleaxe…. maybe.
Well, this is a very cursory glance at our character pipeline for StarCrawlers. Hope it’s given you all an idea of where we’re headed as far as characters go. Stay tuned for more details.
Maybe even… some animation!