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Tobias
1178 9 26

Soulmate Development 4: Protagonist Refining

Posted by A Tobias 2 years ago
These refined designs are only subtly different from the others, but I did say I'd post openly about the development of this game, so...



Since PM ScintillaPurpose mentioned that the owl-eye breasts were reminiscent of Hooters - a connection I'm embarrassed to have not made myself, considering I have an embarrassing childhood memory associated with that particular eatery-slash-oglery* - that's all I can see now, so I definitely had to change it! A shame, since I found it amusing and liked the design in an aesthetic sense, but it was too cluttered on the sprite anyway.



I tried to come up with a symbol that I felt might be just as fitting without unfortunate connotations. I decided on this closed eye thing, which also looks like a crescent moon; both evocative of night and sleep. Such a closed eye could perhaps be related to sadness/depression, too, in a way. I wondered whether to have a wispy spiral thing rising from the top to suggest dreaming in some abstract sense (it's hard to depict 'dreaming' as a symbol), but it made the eye look like some kind of cauldron or brazier or something, I thought.

I think I'm fairly sure about the colour of the top; I love that shade of teal, which some people might call green and others might call blue. The two bluer tops are only there as a result of experimental hue shifts. Colour theory is a thing, you see; some colours are more harmonious when used together than others, and coming up with a ∞ pleasing palette ∞ is a skill in itself. I want orange hair and a teal top, but those colours aren't especially harmonious when paired together... Number 4 shifts the hair colour to one which works best with the top (they're exactly 180 degrees apart on the colour wheel), and 5 shifts the top to harmonise with the hair colour... Neither of those are what I want, though. Orange hair has different connotations than that cherry coloured hair, and I definitely want to keep the teal...

The pants colour should agree with the other two as well, but I struggled with that. 16 and 17 are the results of using a 'triadic' colour scheme - that is, two secondary colours equally spaced from a point directly opposite the primary colour on the hue wheel (I'm sure this makes sense and is deeply fascinating to everyone) - but I thought they just looked really old-fashioned or something. Reminded me of the 60s or 70s or golf pants or something. I wanted them to be lavender, but wasn't sure of the exact hue, saturation or brightness. ∞ This handy colour palette web app ∞ helped a lot, and allowed me to settle on the shade on the bottom row.

I'd been using that chequered sort of pattern because I have some pyjama pants like that myself, and there were a few in the Google images... but that design doesn't really say anything, it has no meaning, so I wanted something better. Moons would match the night/dreams theme, and the symbol on her top, but it seemed a bit... bland? Predictable? The design I did end up liking is stylised clouds, since clouds are a good metaphor for thoughts in mindfulness teachings; seeing your thoughts as just passing clouds allows you to distance and dissociate yourself from them, to be free of them, and this game is about exactly that. Clouds and dreams seem to be linked in my mind, too. Plus they look a bit like the gyri and sulci on a brain (wow, I know neurology jargon now!), there's that connection too; appropriate if you're exploring her mind.

Oh, and I changed the hair a bit, and tweaked her figure to be less sexualised.

So yes. That's an unnecessarily long ramble about the minutiae of character design. Might be interesting to know the amount of thought that goes into it though.

I may continue to tweak the design over the course of development, but I think I'm fairly happy with this now (22 or 25 is what I'll go with; they're only very subtly different).



* I was in the USA on holiday with my family, and Pokemon Gold and Silver had come out there, long before they did in the UK. My brother and I spent much of the holiday playing them! One time, we were walking through an American 'mall', and we passed a Hooters. Childishly oblivious but recently exposed to the then-excitingly-new Pokemon Hoothoot, my brother and I started hooting at the sight of it. Our parents looked quite embarrassed, but it took me years to understand why!
26
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on 6 Roots

9 Comments

25 Poland
Agartha
2
"Oh, and I changed the hair a bit, and tweaked her figure to be less sexualised."

Come on, admitting that women have breasts is now sexualising? You fall to the extreme, she looks like she's 12 or almost androgynous.

/Small-boobed girl speaking here, don't get crazy :)

Anyway, I prefer upper silhouettes, but 22 design is great. The closed eye symbol is simple, meaningful and recognizable. Also the pants match very well. The pattern is just enough, not too simple and not too complicate, I also like the colour of the pattern, it blends very well. (The pants of 25 stand out too much, in my opinion, and they are slightly too distracting).

Still, keep up the good work!
19 United States INFP LII SoSp RLUAI AIE PhlegmaticSanguine
IAmNotSmartest
3
Wow! So many new designs. And so close together!

I like the teal color too (Thank god someone else recognizes that as a color, my art teacher just calls it grey-blue!), it's subdued, but light enough for dark colors to pop against it.

Speaking of which, I do like the crescent eye symbol. (It does happen to remind me of "Spirit of the Night" item in 'The Binding of Isaac' (∞ LINK ∞ ), but that's such a long-shot connection that it's virtually irrelevant. Curious how the designs are so similar, though- I guess it's a well-communicable concept, moons and eyes!)

And I did quite like those hem bits on #15, though the spite limitations might prevent it.

Of all those pants, I really did like 24 and 25. I do have to say this in regards to color pallets - while I certainly understand how colors look better with specific other ones, would she care if she were just in her Pajamas, not really trying to look good for anyone?

I really like seeing your creative process, like I said before. So, uhm, I really appreciate these rapid-succession updates!
29 United Kingdom INFJ EII 459 SxSo RLxaI AIS MelancholicPhlegmatic
Tobias
2
Interesting; I almost used teardrops instead of eyelashes myself to add an extra layer of meaning (the Sorrow sentiment), which would have made it look identical to that. I think it's such an obvious, fairly unoriginal sort of symbol though that it was bound to have shown up elsewhere! I suppose that's not such a bad thing, though; it means it'll be easily understood. Probably.
19 United Kingdom ENFP IEE 954 SxSp sxxai SIA PhlegmaticSanguine
Orphanim
1
Two posts within 8 hours?
Who are you and what have you done with Tobias?!
23 United States MelancholicPhlegmatic
Eclipse
4
I like these much better... they still manage to be 'strange' while also interesting to look at, and I like different parts from several models. The blue shirt at 5 is my favorite color-wise (though the hair doesn't compliment well, unfortunately), I think I like the hair best at 12/20 or 25, I like the shirt added design at 15 (though color changes of the shirt/collar would be nice again), and I really like the pants at 20 and 23 (though I worry 23 may not be easy to make a sprite with)... I'm not exactly certain why for those! Overall, I like 14's overall look, but the hair could... use some changes... a lot of them (20 is also nice overall)... Oh, and I noticed the eyes look more alive now, which is nice! (I also feel the cowlick seems to stand out too much when I look at this longer, though that's probably just me...)

To slightly stray from that... I also enjoy the new 'closed eye' design, for the several interpretations you can give it's simple design while also allowing for a good design overall. Originally, I thought the crescent moon being vertical could also add a bit of 'dreamy' feel to it, but it'd probably look off or strange... I like the idea for a cloud focus, I feel it works rather well with the whole dream thing... maybe her sleeping with a little stuffed owl could be interesting, as a bit of a nod or something.... though she looks like she's outgrown that stuff just a bit! XD (I think it'd be cute, but I don't think it'd fit her character either... there we go with me spewing dumb ideas again)

Whatever you choose to do, if it keeps going how these drawings or looking, I feel many people will start to enjoy the final design for this character and hopefully some others as well!

The way I posted this is just as confusing as before, oh dear...
20 Hong Kong INTJ 612 ICR MelancholicCholeric
Dingding321
3
My favorites are 22 then 25, which is coincides with your choice 😁. I really like the pattern on 23 but it would be a bit too flashy and distracting for her pants, which is a shame. And I agree that clouds seem like a good symbol to use, especially since you've already kind of used a crescent shape on her top!
29 United Kingdom INFJ EII 459 SxSo RLxaI AIS MelancholicPhlegmatic
Tobias
2
I suppose the crescent moon eye on her top sort of represents the moon above the clouds then, in a way!
22 Canada
Meglos
2
If I could pick and choose, I'd put 14's shirt with 24's hair and pants, only make the designs on those pants just a few shades darker.

I like the colour of 14's shirt just because it seems a tiny bit warmer than the teal shades, but not so bright that it pops. I like the auburn hair colour you've got going on the other ones though, rather than the blonder colour on 14. I also like the moon and star pants because they seem less generic than the plaid ones, but if they were matched with the slightly bluer shirt, the designs would probably need to be darkened a bit to balance the image out, otherwise I think the shirt would dominate too much.
29 United Kingdom INFJ EII 459 SxSo RLxaI AIS MelancholicPhlegmatic
Tobias
1
I like 14's top colour too, though I'm surprised you'd say it looks warmer, since it's closer to blue and 'technically' cooler! It's always a shame when designing to discard things that you like because you're aiming for a certain effect or meaning... I see 14's top as 'blue', which in my mind has different connotations to teal. So even though I like it, it's unfortunately not exactly appropriate!

I think 24's pants might be growing on me though...