Wasteland 2 screenshot and tidbits

Discussion in 'NMA News and Information' started by WorstUsernameEver, Jul 20, 2012.

  1. WorstUsernameEver

    WorstUsernameEver But best title ever!

    May 28, 2010
    Through a Kickstarter update comes to us the very first screenshot of Wasteland 2, together with a lengthy update on matters of art, locales, assets, etc.:<blockquote>We also have our first pass at a Wasteland 2 screen shot to share that is running inside the Unity engine. The process up till now has been in getting up to speed with Unity but also much discussion about look and feel. Our environment art director Koy Vanoteghem has written a nice piece below on our approach and process.

    Releasing a screen shot this early in the process is a new concept for me as we typically want to hone in every element before we show it. But based on the requests and our desire for fan input, we are doing so to solicit feedback on the basic look. Please keep in mind that we have not put in the particle effects and post-processing which will have a dramatic effect on the scene, and this represents just one of the various environments for Wasteland 2 so expect to see other quite different locales. Also, this particular camera angle is on the low end of a range that the player can adjust upwards to a much more top-down view, for those who prefer that style during game play.


    In our effort to establish the appropriate look and feel for the re-launch of the Wasteland franchise, we sifted through a variety of media types available on the market for inspiration. Among all of the similarly natured games, CG film shorts, and various documentaries, it became increasingly clear that the modern day conception of a post-apocalyptic world has diversified.

    Of course, the desert-oriented wasteland devoid of life was still there. But a newer and more compelling version which highlighted nature's reclamation of vacated places took hold of our attention. This new conception gives us the opportunity to generate a variety of environment types while staying true to the narrative. It also allows the location and geology to dictate the flora and fauna, as well as the manner and state of decay. From the dry deserts and icy mountaintops of Arizona to the coastal conditions of LA and larger southern California region, each region generates its own flavor. You saw a bit of this in our early concept pieces we had commissioned. Because the early part of the game, where our development is currently focused, takes place in Arizona, this first screen shot depicts (surprise) a desert scene.

    As we moved into prototyping game-play scenarios and in-game environments, we wanted to keep in mind the long-term strategies we had been talking about in the press. With our small team structure and the expectation of a significant integration of contractor and fan/backer based assets, we wanted to consider the efforts that would be involved in synthesizing those contributions into a consistent style and theme. The Unity engine has this wonderfully integrated asset store, full of props, environment sets, FX and tools, and it seemed the perfect proving grounds for our first pass at this new approach of game environment creation.

    Certainly, purchased or prefabricated assets are nothing new; a variety of sites are out there selling "game-ready" props, and like most developers, we are familiar with that opportunity. But Unity's Asset Store had a few distinct advantages that we found appealing. The store, being accessible from within the editor itself, along with the purchase, downloading and importing of those packages, made this surprisingly painless. Packages containing not only the models and textures, but also materials, particle attachments, and animations were ready to use and then modify immediately upon purchase. And so our goal was to purchase a variety of packages, modify them to suit our stylistic needs, and put together a scene by combining them with assets and textures generated in-house.

    The big exception to all of this is of course characters, which we are developing primarily in house. RPGs have always generated strong relationships between the player and the characters they craft and breathe life into as the game progresses. And to this end, we will be working to create characters that can be read cleanly with our camera angles. Strong silhouettes and bold colors in costuming and accessories, and their animations and poses working with a camera angle (that is still being tested), seemed a tall order for this approach, and so in this shot a few examples of that effort are present.

    We will continue to develop the style and look of the game, undoubtedly that is something that will evolve as we move forward and branch out with other environment types. As we become more familiar with our new found friend Unity, and the technologies that are available to us for lighting, shadowing, and material set-up/execution, we hope you'll enjoy seeing it evolve along with us.

    Koy Vanoteghem</blockquote><center></center>

    Also, via a Chris Avellone's tweet comes the news that Tony Evans and Anthony Davis, both ex-Obsidian designers, are helping with the development. Evans already confirmed on Formspring that he isn't working full-time on the project and hasn't abandoned his own day job, but considering he has previous experience with player-created party dialogue mechanics and that he strongly supported the project in the past, it's still good to have him on board in some capacity.

    Finally, since we're on the subject of Kickstarter, Fallout: New Vegas' tech producer Jason Fader lets us know that his current indie studio Iocaine Studios has launched a Kickstarter for their free-to-play steampunk casual title Steam Bandits. It's a little bit out of a scope, but we thought we might at least mention it.
  2. Guiltyofbeingtrite

    Guiltyofbeingtrite Vault Dweller

    Oct 13, 2008
    Overall I love it, but I think the ground is a little too bright, it's hard to tell the Rangers apart from eachother. I like the cartoony feel to it, I hope they stick with it.
  3. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    Looks pretty awesome to me. The desert setting is a little bland of course, but as Koy notes that'll be different in other areas. The Scorpitron is looking pretty nice.
  4. ronin84

    ronin84 First time out of the vault

    Oct 9, 2006
    While I do like the overall art direction on the 3D assets and such, it's MUCH too bright and cartoony for me. I'd love it if they toned down the saturation and went with something closer to Fallout Tactics if anything. I'm not really digging the Disney / Pixar look. It won't ruin the experience for me, but I'd certainly appreciate a darker, grittier look.
  5. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    Dark and gritty? But, this is a Wasteland game.


    Hah, like Arcania.
  6. Makagulfazel

    Makagulfazel Adept Bungler of Things Orderite

    Jun 14, 2007
    For three months of work, I'm pretty damn happy. While my mind's eye pictured something a bit grittier, I couldn't really give a damn. I want a time machine, but I guess I'll just have to wait like everyone else.
  7. egalor

    egalor Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    Jun 20, 2007
    Thanks for a full size pic, NMA! :)

    The bad:
    1. Ground looks plastic to me. Is it sand, stone or what?

    2. Chars are not convincing (legs especially). They just don't look 'sturdy' enough to me like Rangers I imagined back in the day. I also hope that the equipment carried will be shown on models (at least I hope they will have a visible backpack).

    3. Objects are not detailed enough, but I think this will be dealt with later on.

    The good:

    1. Scorpitron.

    2. Colour palette for this particular location.

    3. Water surface looks ok.


    Overall: I like the progress so far at this very, very early stage of development. Let's see where they are going now.
  8. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    I have to agree with ronin somewhat, it looks all a bit to bright and cartoony even though its a desert.

    Hmm, still it looks "ok" for one of the first screenshots. I was not expecting something like from a block buster game anyway.

    But I would like actually if it was going more in the troika-tech-demo direction.


    Its very similar to the look of wasteland, yet it has a much better "post apoc" feeling in my eyes and it has not a better quality. Just a better use of the colours and lighting.

    But we should wait and see of course. Just saying.
  9. ronin84

    ronin84 First time out of the vault

    Oct 9, 2006
    Yeah I like that Troika demo palette. I mean I was out in Arizona / Utah a couple of weeks ago; I'm not expecting hyper realism, but just a 5-10% decrease in saturation would look better in my opinion, even if they keep with the overall cartoony look.
  10. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    I am really a bit dumbfounded at all this talk of a "cartoony look". Some of the textures are too smooth and the saturation is high, does that make it cartoony?
  11. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    also, but this is really really nitpicking now, but I hope people forgive me (hey you know me by now). The models in general need a bit more attention ( I know its all work in progress! ), working on the size of the objects, like buildings, walls, people etc. I am not sure if that cartoony look is intentional or not, but at least I have the feeling that a few changes here and there would give the overall game a better feeling in the end.

    maybe, maybe not? I chose it for the lack of better words to describe what I mean. It definitely has this "plastic" look, which I actually think is not that great. - but as said, its nitpicking for now! :)

    I would still buy the game even if keeps that look.
  12. Zeronet

    Zeronet It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Apr 26, 2003
    While i do like it, i agree it could use a little less color saturation.
  13. ronin84

    ronin84 First time out of the vault

    Oct 9, 2006
    Perhaps you've never seen Cars or Toy Story?

    Cartoony as far as CGI, 'new-age' cartoons. You can't deny that this screenshot has a similar look to Cars.
  14. randir14

    randir14 First time out of the vault

    Dec 20, 2005
    It actually looks very similar to how I imagined it would look, although maybe a bit cartoon-ish as others have said. I like it though.
  15. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    I have. Didn't like either one. Some of Pixar's other works are great.

    And uh, yeah, I do deny exactly that. It doesn't look similar to Cars at all, not in any meaningful stylistic way, just in smoothness of textures and lack of effects giving everything a "plastic" look, and that's because it's an alpha, not because of a stylistic choice.

    (this is why no one ever releases alpha screenshots)
  16. Hassknecht

    Hassknecht For hate's sake. Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Aug 16, 2010
    I like it, although it looks a bit too smooth to me. But that's probably because it's early.
  17. Gnarles Bronson

    Gnarles Bronson regular mutant

    Oct 30, 2011
    That'll do, pig. That'll do.
  18. Mad Max RW

    Mad Max RW Mildly Dipped

    Jan 12, 2004
    Just for laughs I decreased the vibrance of the pic by 50%:

    Click on image for full size version.
  19. Lexx

    Lexx Testament to the ghoul lifespan
    Moderator Modder

    Apr 24, 2005
    I love the Scorpitron. Didn't expected to see such a model this early. The human poses still seem to be a bit strange / not cool, but other than that I see nothing to complain there right now.

    What makes the scene look so cartoony is probably the ground and wall textures. But I am pretty sure this stuff will change over time.

    Also, check out the old house in the top center of the screen- again, the chaos symbol, just like in the city jungle concept art. On the wall at the right side is one of the other, yet unkown, symbols as well.
  20. Beelzebud

    Beelzebud A Smooth-Skin

    Mar 6, 2008
    I love it! I think that for such an early shot, it's looking great. Of course people can find places that need tweaked, but I think if this is the direction they're going, everything is going to be fine.