The following video series created by Riot Games, maker of League of Legends, covers some of the essential aspects of making a video game. Do You Wanna Make Games? Then watch this series.
Here's an overview of the episodes, listed in order:
- Intro to Game Art
- Concept Art
- Character Art
- Environment Art
- Technical Art
- Character Animation
- Game VFX
- Sound Design
- User Interface Design
- Game Design
Episode 1: Intro to Game Art
In this video, we talk to game artists about the purpose art serves in games, as well as some of the foundational tools they use to achieve a desired experience: shape, color, and detail. These tools are leveraged across the full art pipeline, and this video provides a brief overview before we dive into each of the art sub-disciplines later in the series.
Episode 2: Concept Art
Check out this video to learn a bit about a concept artist's role on a game team, from establishing constraints and preparing to design a concept, to narrowing in on an idea and rallying the team around it.
Episode 3: Character Art
In this video, you’ll get an overview of the character modeling workflow and learn about some of the character artists’ key considerations throughout the modeling process. We’ll also introduce the art of texturing—from hand-painting to using shaders—which is often part of a character artist’s role in addition to modeling.
Episode 4: Environment Art
In this video, the environment artists describe the process of actually building an environment—which is a huge amount of work! From planning a layout to modeling literally every tree, rock, building, prop that you see in the world, environment artists must be masters of prioritization and efficiency. They must understand that every decision is a trade off and focus on the things that are most critical to achieving the desired game experience.
Episode 5: Technical Art
There are many different specializations within tech art, but at its core, it's about streamlining art creation and implementation. Whether on the tools side of things—building pipelines and custom tooling, or the game content side—rigging characters, or creating shaders, tech art requires keen problem solving skills. Check out this video to learn about some of the common specializations for tech art and why they’re so critical to any development team.
Episode 6: Character Animation
In this video, animators discuss the goals for character animation in a game. They explain how you should think about animation as a series of poses over time. That means an animation is really only as good as its poses. Learn what makes a strong pose, as well as some of the basics of timing and spacing—the keys to believable, satisfying movement.
There's also a huge technical component to animation when it comes to implementation in games. The animators give an overview of state machines and parametric blending, explaining how different animations work together and overlap, reacting to whatever is happening to and around a character at any given time in a game.
Episode 7: Game VFX
Ensuring that a visual effect accurately communicates gameplay and is thematically cohesive and exciting for players is already a challenge. But their job extends to entire character kits, across character rosters, and throughout the game as a whole. All the effects in a game should achieve a harmonious style, but each effect also needs to clearly belong to a given character or source. Oh, and there’s also no standard way to build a visual effect. Confused yet?
Check out this video to learn some of the ways VFX can be constructed, as well as some of the artistic tools VFX artists use to clearly communicate any given gameplay and theme.
Episode 8: Sound Design
What makes a good sound? In games, strong sound design effectively communicates what’s happening to and around you, provides feedback on the decisions you make, and helps immerse you in the game experience. In this video, a few sound designers discuss how to think about sound in games, cover some basics in sound terminology, and the sound designer’s toolbox.
Episode 9: User Interface Design
Many games require you to have immediate access to a ton of critical information like stats, inventory, mission info, and location. Being able to easily access that info when you need it—and only when you need it—is the result of UI designers working very closely with user experience designers. In this video we review the difference between UX and UI design and hear from visual designers and motion graphics artists about some core considerations for designing UI and ensuring a game experience is consistent, cohesive, and immersive.
Episode 10: Game Design
In this video, a few game designers talk about some fundamental game design concepts—from understanding “fun,” to setting clear goals, and creating opposition. They also explain how design decisions can impact the theme and tone of a game, even without any art at all, underscoring the importance of cohesive art and design. Hopefully after watching this video you'll start thinking about all the ways art functions to support design choices and vice versa. Maybe you'll even get inspired to try designing, yourself!
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