Alex Williams - Game Designer

(includes the beating heart of an indie too.)

 - Isaac -


Project Description

Isaac is a small explorable character vignette that I created as specialisation work at university.  The scene and supporting documentation expand on my interests in visual art and environmental storytelling - specifically regarding characters and the ways that other designers have approached indirect characterisation.

 

 

-    Narrative Design // Modelling  -    PC   -   UE4 Blueprint   -   2014 // 5 months // Solo Project    -


Project Role

Besides pitching the initial project proposal and upholding a production schedule, I carried out practical and theoretical research, developed the narrative content, and finally conceptualised and realised the art implementation for the scene. 

Additionally, I collaborated with an external composer for the audio. (Please see the bottom of the page for more information)

Challenges

Selecting the right approach to environmental storytelling was a key research challenge, given the many contrasting opinions out in the academic and professional world. This approach had to be combined with character sketching tools, creating a model I could return to for all my narrative plotting.

Building Isaac required quick and dirty concept design work - a process that I hadn't gone through before. My expectations of scope and time investment for the production of art assets had to shift dynamically, putting extra pressure on efficient modularity and style choices. 

Besides discovering my own art process, I also had to familiarise myself with the UE4 platform - shaders, art imports, simple blueprint logic, and sound implementation.

Goals and Outcome

Isaac was a vehicle to experiment with my interest in visual art and narrative design - an understanding of environmental storytelling as it applies to visual art, level design, and writing for interactivity. I was especially interested in contrasts between more academic methods and "in the field" applications from developers. In addition, I wanted to discover approaches to character writing and spend time on an original narrative. At the same time, I had to create a realised environment by developing my worldbuilding skills.

Looking at the end product I feel that although obviously a result of a growing process and first time attempt, the scene has a cohesive and powerful impression. The art style in it's current state is a reflection of scope and style compromises made to serve the embedded narrative.


Software Tools Used

 -    Adobe PhotoShop // Unreal Engine 4 // Autodesk Maya // xNormal    -  


-   AUDIO BY SJOERD limberger // www.sjoerdlimberger.com -


 

Alex Williams ©. All rights reserved.