Today, I will reveal tiny bits of game art from Paper Wings and also talk a bit about the art design process. There were a lot of positive feedback about the game art in my Reddit reveal. I think it is worth talking about since it has been something that I committed countless hours of the development process.
As you might have realized by now, this bird is the main character of Paper Wings. As simple as it may look, I actually gave many hours to get this design to satisfy me. I had few things in mind when beginning to design the main character.
- It had to feel like paper.
- It had to be visually consistent with the environment design, which was heavily influenced by origami art.
- Even though it was supposed to be made of paper, It had to feel alive and had to have its parts defined and suitable for animation.
Once I was happy and settled with this design, I began to research bird species on the internet. I went through several books quickly, trying to decide on the species that I want to have in the game. I ended up with a list of over 100 species.
I created lots of different birds within several weeks. There are more than 40 of them sitting in the design folder with numerous variations. For the first public build of Paper Wings, I am planning to use 22 of them.
As I suggested earlier, and also in the Reddit thread, the biggest influences on the environment art were origami art, Monument Valley (game), and Journey (game). These influences all point to a traditional way of design; which governs the use of shading, gradient and simple color palettes. While searching for a style to settle with, watching and learning from ustwo was one of the most beneficial things I've done. I got a lot of ideas from other games too, especially for the UI design.