Braid (video Game) - Development - Artwork

Artwork

Blow provided simple drawings of what he envisioned the levels to look like in Braid (top). Hellman created the necessary pieces of artwork to match the drawings as well as the mood and tone of each level; the image here was used for World 3, Time and Mystery.

The game's art took more than a year to complete. Background artwork for the game went through initial rough color concepts created by Mike Corriero (creative illustrator and concept artist) and ultimately the final artwork was created by David Hellman, artist of the critically acclaimed webcomic A Lesson Is Learned but the Damage Is Irreversible. Blow gave Hellman rough images of the level's layout and told him to draw over it. Hellman and Blow iterated through several styles before settling on final versions. Through these changes, the two worked to identify and remove elements of the art that could confuse the player, while retaining aesthetic elements that would be generalized by the player as non-functional parts of the level. Once the game's overall artwork was created, Blow and Hellman broke out functional pieces that could be used in Braid's level editor. As each world was built up using these pieces, Blow suggested more changes that reflected the tone of each world and avoided art that distracted from the gameplay. "Time and Forgiveness", the first world the player encounters, was drawn to create a feel of exploration and forgiveness, while artwork for "Time and Decision" used a mix of "luxurious domestic objects (nice furniture and fabrics) with rugged outdoor objects (swampy water, rotting piers and nautical rope)" to create an intentionally "incongruous" look to convey aspects of alternate realities. Several variations on the game's backgrounds were done until they arrived at the concept of blurring the background elements to make them appear out of focus, while keeping the foreground elements sharply in focus and clear to the player. Particle effects were applied to both background and foreground elements to add apparent motion to them, such as the waving of grass blades or the movement of clouds. The character visuals were originally created by Edmund McMillen, but were later redrawn by Hellman "to better match the now-predominant style of the backgrounds".

Read more about this topic:  Braid (video Game), Development

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