Slime Lord - 3D Modeling and Animation
Building Virtual Worlds, Round 3
Duration: 1 Week
Developed in Unity for Apple ARKit
Programmers: Danke (Douglas) Luo, Guanghao Yang
Artists: Fangda Luo, Euna Park
Sound: Daniel Wolpow
Producer: Euna Park
Special thanks to Yujin Ariza for the translucency shader
This was a strange challenge from an art perspective. When we decided to make a stacking game, I had reservations about how appealing and fun such a mechanic could present in augmented reality. It was further complicated by the fact that we had a difficult time figuring out what the theme for the game should be. We had many discussions about how we could make the game different from other stacking games that we studied, but nothing quite clicked as "fun" for the team.
It wasn't until our programmers started running into their own development issues that we found our theme. I noticed that the simple cubes they were testing in an initial prototype seemed to be wobbling and deforming in order to create the swaying motion of the towers. When they confirmed this to be true, and a problem they were trying to work around, I suggested that we use it instead. We could embrace this 'problem' as a feature, and create the entire world out of jelly. (Click here to read more about the development and experience design process.) This ended up being a pivotal moment for the art as well, and Fangda and I could start creating assets with confidence.
CHARACTER DESIGN AND ANIMATION
The key focus of the aesthetic was to be silly, fun, and plausibly have everything made out of jelly. This meant no corners anywhere.
We drew inspiration from mobile games, which often have characters or mascots that motivate and engage their guests to play. In thinking of a charismatic character made of jelly, I was instantly reminded of the movie "Flubber," starring the singular Robin Williams. We decided to move forward with creating this kind of endearing character to help set the aesthetic of our game and bind the team's collective vision around the game's personality.
The movement which ended up making it into the game was a constant falling/flailing animation.