Moon Hunters: Druid Character Concepts

If you’ve been reading our newsletter, you’ll know that Xin has been painting up a storm, taking references from every which way to inform our ancient world.

Moon Hunters is set in an age when gods walked the earth, when the tribes of mortals were still finding their purpose in the world, and defining what it meant to be human. The spirit of every creature and object is fresh and alive, newly captured by the hands of its creators.

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With this vivacity in mind, we enlisted the help of the amazing G.P. Lackey, a talented artist you may recognise from such excellent games as Fez, Skipping Stones, Death Road to Canada, Fallen City, Frobisher Says, and others. Xin and G.P. have really been pushing the pixels to bring even more personality to the characters. Here’s how the Druid has evolved:

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As a master of Wild magics, the Druid can speak in tongues older than apes and war. Druids are only partially human after becoming attuned to the green of leaf and red of tooth. Some prefer to run in packs or herds, delighting in the company of others and entertaining friends with tales of what happens in the light of the full Moon. Others prefer the quiet companionship of trees and flora, shunning other humans as noisy, impatient animals, rushing around too quickly to absorb the wisdom that comes from roots sunk down deep into the soil.

Ancient myth tells us that when the Sun tried to slay the Moon and take Her power the first time, the earth and everything on it were formed from the flesh of the goddess’s body, and the rivers from Her blood. Druids are grateful to the Moon for Her sacrifice, so that all creatures may live and grow from Her gift.

Moon Hunters will allow you to customise your character in color palette and head. Here’s an example alternate color that G.P.’s been working on:

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Gameplay-wise, we’re thinking the Druid can help the party explore by persuading stubborn brambles and beasts to step out of the way. We’re toying with a few different ideas for the Druid — does the Druid summon Wild creatures to help in battle, or transform into different creatures? Or both? We’re honestly not sure yet, but we’ll let you know when the prototype is ready to show.

And a few character customisation head concepts from Xin are below. Some are funny, others inscrutable. We’re hoping to keep the ‘weird’ tone, when they’re translated into pixel art.

DruidHeads

Feel free to comment in the forums if you want to pressure Xin and G.P. to turn concepts and characters into wallpapers, or suggest a particular creature/character design.

Inventing the Inventor

The Inventor is an important character that the player interacts with on a regular basis, so we made sure to dedicate some extra love to creating its concept.

Here’s a glimpse into our creative process for its character design!

First Iteration
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– A1 and A2 were too goofy
– A5 felt too gangster, so we made a nerdy A4 version
– We need more sketches!

Second Iteration
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– We did a quick survey of 15-20 developers and B2/B3 were tied as the most popular.
– B4 now looks like old grandpa, which we decided was undesirable
– MORE SKETCHES!

Third Iteration
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After a bit more sketching, we definitely preferred the friendlier, happier faces and decided it was time to narrow down on the design. The white arrows point to our internal favorites.

Fourth Iteration
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At this point, we’re pretty satisfied with the design of the head, and the yellow-green one is our favorite color scheme… so this is what the good doctor will look like in the game. What do you think? Did we make the right decision?

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Character Design In-Progress: Captain Aurora

We spent some time refining the male protagonist (“Captain Flint”) in his default configuration. He’ll have other heads and skin-tones available, but we felt he was a good starting point.

We looked at all of the classic adventurous space captains (Han Solo, Mal, Captain Kirk, maybe even a little tiny bit of Flash Gordon/Zap Brannigan) and tried to find our own distinct design for Captain Flint.

We wanted him to seem independent and perhaps a bit defiant in his quest for adventure. Internally, his art assets are still referred to as “the renegade”.

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We’ve started looking at our second protagonist design. We want the female protagonist (“Captain Aurora”) to have a more military, athletic feel.

Like the male Captain, she’ll be customisable, but we want all of her versions to communicate that she’s a serious, skilled combatant, like Zoe, Starbuck, or Ripley.

We’ve moved away from styling her like an outright “assassin”, but so far, we’re happy with Captain Aurora’s evolution.

What do you think of them both?