Zelda Producer: We Have to be More Careful With Zelda's Artstyle

Dragonbums

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... relating to that specifically, but I'll say that while I recognize the value of a franchise that maintains a consistency in style throughout its iterations (GTA, Metroid Prime trilogy, Portal, Soul Calibur, a whole bunch of others)...

The one thing about GTA is that I absolutely adore their illustrations and promotional art. From an artistic standpoint it is very appealing. Especially with the different color shading.

I know that's weird, but if they ever make a game that incorporates that illustration style into their game I would buy it.
 

Lightknight

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Covarr said:
Don't you dare apologize for The Wind Waker. It's still the best looking Zelda game, and arguably the best in the series period (based on clever dungeons and puzzles, well-polished combat, and a more interesting story than the franchise usually gets).

P.S. Thanks
Story and gameplay wouldn't necessarily have been hurt by a less cartoony style. It felt like a game for children. Which, those of us who grew up with the series clearly aren't. Alternatively, the ultra realism takes away some of its spirit. A healthy medium would be nice to reach.
 

Dragonbums

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Valderis said:
I'm not worried about the artstyle, I'm worried about the character design, I don't know what you people smoked when you came up with the weird people in the newer games but that shit needs to go.
That just makes it fun.

I'd rather have zany character designs than regular looking NPC's.

They have personality to them.
 

Dragonbums

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Aiddon said:
Dragonbums said:
Breaking new ground in terms of what? Visual appeal?

Is there a translation mishap somewhere in the article? I'm very confused as to why Aonuma is suddenly having intense regret over Windwakers art style (which is fucking adorable might I add) The top three favorite art styles in Zelda games with Skyward Sword in second place and Twilight Princess coming in third.

Unless I'm missing something and he's still- to this very day getting hate mail over a game's art direction from 8 years ago.


This especially confuses me since there was talk of being a dark skinned Link in the new games, and if the comments on the Destructoid were anything to go by, simply THAT was causing a category 5 shit storm that will even rival WindWakers initial announcement.


Then again, I can kind of see where he's coming from. I don't think Aonuma is really talking about Windwaker, but more or less talking about all the Zelda games.

Now that I think about it, sans Twilight Princess's art style (which was loved because 'dark and edgy') Skyward Sword's art style was met with a fuck ton of whining and complaining.
A good amount of those whiners complained about how colorful and "kiddy" it looked like Windwaker. The only difference being Link isn't chibified.
Hell, a good amount of people said they outright refused to buy a game because of the style of Skyward Sword.
While it certainly wasn't kicking up near the amount of shit that WW did, I can understand really well how such reactions for every single unique style you take can really drain on an artist self esteem and confidence.
Put it this way, you honestly start to second guess yourself a lot. Especially if what you chose to do really was the best decision (which they were).

It has to be depressing as shit to do a new artistic style, and most of the comments you get revolve around it not being OoT enough, or 'eurgh yuck colorful and kiddy'
I wouldn't be surprised; gamers and the press seem to have garnered this idea that colorful and stylized is shit and must be stamped out to make way for the "serious" art styles. Again, a side effect of gaming being in its awkward puberty phase.
I wouldn't say gaming is in it's puberty stage, but a lot of gamers have an aversion to anything "kiddy" and kiddy games are synonymous with anything that includes more than 5 colors. Ironically enough this very mentality has lead to the whole "dark and gritty" phase.
If it's not black, grey, and brown, with only a hint of a single color of your choice, then it's not mature. Considering how WW came out right after the mature Zelda titles OoT and Majora's Mask, it's no surprise that everyone wanted Zelda to take the dark route.

I'm glad WW showed up when it did. It was to remind people that Zelda was also a fun light hearted adventure games. I also appreciate Skyward Sword. Because after Twilight Princess, people wanted Zelda to turn down that same path again.
 

Terramax

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RogueportJack said:
Further proof that anyone with any actual talent stopped working on the Zelda series a long time ago. He's sitting here apologizing for the best looking game ever made because some people are fucking morons who can't handle it if everything isn't brown as dirt. I can't believe how angry I'm getting at this.
You're basically feeling what I was about a decade ago when the game first came out.

I loved the art style the moment I saw it, and couldn't believe people in Japan were apparently up at arms about the direction.

Frankly, Nintendo have made me so angry over the last few years, I'm not sure I have the energy to fume about this anymore.
 

Terramax

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Dragonbums said:
I wouldn't say gaming is in it's puberty stage, but a lot of gamers have an aversion to anything "kiddy" and kiddy games are synonymous with anything that includes more than 5 colors. Ironically enough this very mentality has lead to the whole "dark and gritty" phase.
If it's not black, grey, and brown, with only a hint of a single color of your choice, then it's not mature. Considering how WW came out right after the mature Zelda titles OoT and Majora's Mask, it's no surprise that everyone wanted Zelda to take the dark route.

I'm glad WW showed up when it did. It was to remind people that Zelda was also a fun light hearted adventure games. I also appreciate Skyward Sword. Because after Twilight Princess, people wanted Zelda to turn down that same path again.
Thing is, even in the land of the rising sun, where cute is, and has always been, the in-thing, people protested about the art style in Wind Waker.

This draws me to conclude that it's not about 'western gamer's preference for gritty games', but more due to that Nintendo fans HATE anything remotely different from the same record being played.
 

Micalas

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Why is this guy hating on the best Zelda game since OOT? The art-style was amazing and it's the reason the visuals still hold up today. The characters were great, the atmosphere was great. It was just all around a great game. What the hell?

MrHide-Patten said:
Guess I'll never see something like this then...
Wow that artwork is great.
 

Dragonbums

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Micalas said:
Why is this guy hating on the best Zelda game since OOT? The art-style was amazing and it's the reason the visuals still hold up today. The characters were great, the atmosphere was great. It was just all around a great game. What the hell?

Dude, this guy MADE the game.

He's not hating on it. He's just talking about being not doing anything way drastic with the art style. An understandable perspective since the first thing people whine their tits about when a new Zelda game is announced is that the art style sucks.
 

Dragonbums

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Terramax said:
Dragonbums said:
I wouldn't say gaming is in it's puberty stage, but a lot of gamers have an aversion to anything "kiddy" and kiddy games are synonymous with anything that includes more than 5 colors. Ironically enough this very mentality has lead to the whole "dark and gritty" phase.
If it's not black, grey, and brown, with only a hint of a single color of your choice, then it's not mature. Considering how WW came out right after the mature Zelda titles OoT and Majora's Mask, it's no surprise that everyone wanted Zelda to take the dark route.

I'm glad WW showed up when it did. It was to remind people that Zelda was also a fun light hearted adventure games. I also appreciate Skyward Sword. Because after Twilight Princess, people wanted Zelda to turn down that same path again.
Thing is, even in the land of the rising sun, where cute is, and has always been, the in-thing, people protested about the art style in Wind Waker.

This draws me to conclude that it's not about 'western gamer's preference for gritty games', but more due to that Nintendo fans HATE anything remotely different from the same record being played.

Art style is subjective though. It has nothing to do with game mechanics.

As some other people brought up it may or may not have something to do with their tech demo involving Zelda that the game turned out nothing like.

Honestly, I think it's because things like aesthetics rely on art, and not many people who play videogames have any knowledge nor appreciation of design.
You can tell who those people are. If someone doesn't like Twilight princess, they talk specifically about what they didn't like ranging from color scheme to certain aesthetic choices. Then you have people who don't like it because it's too "dark".

I'm fairly certain if Rockstar made the design choice to make their next GTA game more in line with their promotional illustrations instead of realistic it would garner the same results.
 

Covarr

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Lightknight said:
Covarr said:
Don't you dare apologize for The Wind Waker. It's still the best looking Zelda game, and arguably the best in the series period (based on clever dungeons and puzzles, well-polished combat, and a more interesting story than the franchise usually gets).

P.S. Thanks
Story and gameplay wouldn't necessarily have been hurt by a less cartoony style. It felt like a game for children. Which, those of us who grew up with the series clearly aren't. Alternatively, the ultra realism takes away some of its spirit. A healthy medium would be nice to reach.
I'd argue that the story would be hurt by cutting back on the art style. The characters were more expressive than they've been in any Zelda game before or since, and the art style meshed well with the overall tone of the story. Not to mention, it was still prettier even than their latest and greatest, Skyward Sword.

P.S. Thanks
 

Arnoxthe1

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I'm just gonna add my "I think Windwaker sucked." opinion on top of the pile and also say that Twilight Princess had a lot of potential. Maybe you guys should give that a relook. Or better yet, just ignore the whole issue altogether and do a serious examination of OoT and MM.
 

Brian Tams

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NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO. Don't you DARE get away from cel-shading. Both Wind Waker and Skyward Sword looked amazing with their cel-shaded graphics. How dare you piss on the style!
 

Roxas1359

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*heart breaks*
Hearing this about what is one of my favorite Zelda games makes me really sad. I loved the personality and visuals of Wind Waker a lot. Out of all the Zeldas, except probably Majora's Mask, I replay Wind Waker the most.
See, the graphics and everything aged well, and the only real problem with the HD remake was that the bloom was a bit too much and just needed to be toned down a bit.

Really though I get the feeling that he's trying to appease all the fans of Zelda, but one should never try to appease everyone because it is impossible. People will find faults in anything, and trying to appease to everyone only leads to disaster sadly.
 

Fox12

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People weren't pissed with you for trying a new artstyle Nintendo. They were pissed because you showed one thing and delivered another.

The initial trailer looked something like this (albeit with music):

What we got was this:


Don't get me wrong, I think Wind Waker was a masterpiece with an innovative art style and world, but you can't pull a heel face turn like that and not expect repercussions. Yes, I understand it was a tech demo to show of the Game Cube, but it still builds certain expectations in peoples minds. It's a marketing problem more than a development problem. In any case, I would love to see a more innovative Zelda. After all, Ocarina already perfected the classic formula. Please, feel free to bring me something new, like Majoras Mask. Just make sure to market it right.
 

Billy D Williams

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Say what now? I mean besides arguably Skyward Sword Wind Waker is the best looking Zelda to date!

God, I just hate when people don't like something just because its unordinary :\
 

Lightknight

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Covarr said:
Lightknight said:
Covarr said:
Don't you dare apologize for The Wind Waker. It's still the best looking Zelda game, and arguably the best in the series period (based on clever dungeons and puzzles, well-polished combat, and a more interesting story than the franchise usually gets).

P.S. Thanks
Story and gameplay wouldn't necessarily have been hurt by a less cartoony style. It felt like a game for children. Which, those of us who grew up with the series clearly aren't. Alternatively, the ultra realism takes away some of its spirit. A healthy medium would be nice to reach.
I'd argue that the story would be hurt by cutting back on the art style. The characters were more expressive than they've been in any Zelda game before or since, and the art style meshed well with the overall tone of the story. Not to mention, it was still prettier even than their latest and greatest, Skyward Sword.

P.S. Thanks
Well, finding a healthy balance between cartoony and realistic doesn't mean that expressiveness is lost.

But let's be clear, this is something extremely personal and subjective. This is literally us discussing what kind of art is "better". My only contribution here isn't which is "better", because no such conclusion can be made, but it is instead that the aggregate of gamers that play these kinds of games are in their 30's. Too cartoony and you alienate a lot of them, too realistic and you compromise the spirit of the series. You don't have to be cartoony to be expressive. Skyward Sword just wasn't as vibrant, that's true of a lot of the things they do. Hell, their bloom filter really toned down the colors of the original in this remake. So even with the same style we wouldn't necessarily see similar vibrancy.

Realistic games, like Uncharted 2/3, Bioshock Infinite, etc have extremely colorful/pretty scenes. Pretty and expressive isn't exclusive to cartoony.
 

Narfo

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Hang on, wait for it...
And there it goes: the echo of millions of gamers screaming "WHAT THE FUCK" when they read this, traveling around the world, for the eighteenth time.

Seriously? One of the people who brought one of the most beloved games with a unique art style actually APOLOGIZING for it?
Either he's on some serious shit, is being paid off, has gone crazy, was in an accident that lowered his IQ, or is just plain ignorant.
No matter what the reason, there is no excuse for bringing something good into the world and then later claiming it was bad.
Bull-fucking-shit.
 

MrHide-Patten

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Micalas said:
Why is this guy hating on the best Zelda game since OOT? The art-style was amazing and it's the reason the visuals still hold up today. The characters were great, the atmosphere was great. It was just all around a great game. What the hell?

MrHide-Patten said:
Guess I'll never see something like this then...
Wow that artwork is great.
I would've put a link to the artist if I could remember their deviantART username. But the artist has more of this concept lying around, and I thought it was genuinely awesome. If rule 63 would ever work it would be best with Link, the story never said it has to be a dude, just result in a higher pitched 'yahh' anyway.