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Shadowrun: Hong Kong Kickstarter Update #14: Twitch chat, and a first look at the environment art

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Shadowrun: Hong Kong Kickstarter Update #14: Twitch chat, and a first look at the environment art

Development Info - posted by Infinitron on Thu 29 January 2015, 00:52:12

Tags: Andrew McIntosh; Harebrained Schemes; Mitch Gitelman; Shadowrun: Hong Kong

While there aren't going to be any exciting new stretch goal announcements for Shadowrun: Hong Kong in the near future, Harebrained Schemes still have a few tricks up their sleeve to liven up the mid-Kickstarter lull. The latest Kickstarter update informs us of a Twitch interview Mitch Gitelman and writer Andrew McIntosh are going to do tomorrow:

Andrew, our Lead Writer, and Mitch, our Fearless Leader are going to be LIVE on Twitch tomorrow - January 29 at 8pm EST - with Arvan Eleron talking about Shadowrun: Hong Kong! Andrew and Mitch had a great time the last time they were on his show and we hope you’ll stop by! http://www.twitch.tv/arvaneleron

There's also a behind-the-scenes look at the work of two of the game's young environment artists, Cassidy and Spencer. What makes this one more interesting than the campaign's previous behind-the-scenes updates is that it comes with some actual content - a first look at one of the game's environments. I quote:

The first environment we tackled on this project was the Hong Kong Night Market, which was denser than anything done for our previous games. The painted mood piece below was created by Tristin, our lead Environment Artist, to give us an idea of the look and feel of this environment. It’s our job to interpret Tristin's concepts into our isometric game perspective.

Starting with props from our previous games and sketching on top of them helps us quickly block out a general idea of the space. This concept began with a more traditional style that represented the typical architecture of a traditional "Chinatown" - like peaked roofs and wood panel walls.

Our initial feedback from Mitch and our Art Director, Chris, was that it looked "too touristy" so changes were made to make it feel more down and dirty Shadowrun. This kind of iteration is what makes our work better so we try to squeeze in as many iterations as possible to explore each concept. Just this one concept went through four different iterations before we got to a place where we wanted to move forward!

Once the overall environment is determined and the isometric concept sketch is approved, it’s time to start working on individual props - which really brings a scene to life.

Starting with a list of props and tons of references, we use Photoshop to sketch and paint new environment assets that are specific to Hong Kong. Painting one prop at a time, often we end up with a single Photoshop document filled to the brim with layers of different props which are saved and then placed in a composition like this one. This part is a blast, because we can finally start seeing our world come together one neon sign at a time.

In the GIF below, you can see the process of how we build an environment starting with the sketch, then building a base layer of road, buildings and awnings and then street carts, lights, neon signs, and street trash getting more and more detailed as we go.


Nice. Give us more stuff like this, HBS (but save the best for the last days of the Kickstarter, of course).

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