The Matrix: Monster Extravaganza

Context: Technology

Who has done this before?

The game series “Monster Hunter” produced by Capcom in particular has done this before. But also any game or movie that created and used 3D assets.

How have they done it?

Presumably by using Maya or some other 3D Modeling software. Monster Hunter is a game so they also used a an engine of some sort.

How is yours different?

I can’t really see any way that the modeling would be different. However, my rendering methods could be very different and I could also use programs like Substance Designer or Substance Painter to help achieve some more individuality in my project.

 

Context: Design

Who has done it before?

Again, while my specific inspiration comes from Monster Hunter, any game that has a fantasy type setting where they need to make monsters or fantastical creatures will make use of the basic concept of combining animals with other elements.

How have they done it?

At least with regards to Monster Hunter, they usually take references of actual animals or mythologies to keep their designs more realistic and believable. There is never anything incredibly excessive or out of context in their designs with the exception being their size. They are limited in what they can do in a sense. It is a game so anything not fun or engaging hasn’t been added. That said, they have come up with some creative designs in the past that were much more fantasy based.

In general though, they have tended to keep the formula the same. Take an animal and combine it with an element.

How is your’s different?

I want to take the design farther out there. I want to reach as far as I can from what is considered normal but still have it be believable. Because of this, I should be able to stray farther from Monster Hunters set course. Additionally, my models could be much higher quality and allow for much more detailed design. The recent Monster Hunter games have been created for the Nintendo 3DS which is a handheld console. So compared to what I am capable of creating they are very low resolution.

 

Context: Narrative

Who has done this before?

Creating a narrative with just monsters is not something that Monster Hunter has done very well as story and narrative. However, Dark Souls has done a quite a bit better with the design and incorporating a story into them. Usually they also have supporting item descriptions to flesh out the story but between the title of the boss, the animations, and the design, Dark Souls has probably done best in this regard.

How have they done it?

For Dark Souls, they have context to help them. Where was the enemy found? What else is in the area? How do they move? The inherent design is a critical part but only a small part. For example, in the original Dark Souls there is lore that tells of the Witches of Izalith. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRbZVx6SuOE

If you watched the video, you could see that so many small details, from character dialogue, to the positioning of the enemies and how they act, comes together to form a story. Every possible element of design was used to give player a chance to piece together a story. And this is done for practically every character in the game.

How is your’s different?

Unless my thesis shifts to include the environment that my monsters will inhabit, my ability to infuse a narrative will be limited to the models themselves. And if I want to make each of the models like those used in a game, they cannot be unique from others of the same species.

However, what if I were to build a story through all of these different models. So in addition to what the base creature would be, they would have some effect or element from another creature. It could work and result in a story told without words, but the execution must be precise and it must be understood that the models I make are unique individual beings.

 

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