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  • Designing A Playable Hero

    - Andrew-David Jahchan
  • Hey everyone! In this article, we wanted to share the creative process we went through when creating Reynald, our eager archeologist!

    Back when Reynald's Expedition was being conceived at the Game Maker's Toolkit Game Jam (GMTK Game Jam), coming up with a main character was not much of a priority. We were mainly focused on getting a completed game done within the game jam's three day time limit. We knew that we were making a simple puzzle game and we needed a simple character to match.

    Because of these constraints, Reynald started out as a nameless critter that we had to keep as simple as possible. We thought that giving him a cute design would excuse his simplistic, low poly modelling, while also keeping him as easy to animate as possible.

    Our game was tile-based and built around digging as the main mechanic, so the character had to fit the sharp style of a drill while also being small enough to fit in a single tile. In our minds, a fox - what with their simple features and defined edges - was an obvious choice. After some quick modelling, we finally had a main character! You can tell that Animal Crossing was one of our primary inspirations for the look.

    His model stuck to the original sketch's feel pretty well, although we did get rid of the eyeglasses. To save on time and animation complications, we made his outfit a simple texture and separated his arms from his body.

    In simple models, separating the limbs reduces the chances that the shoulder joint gets deformed when posing the model. This made animations much easier to create under such a tight deadline.


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