Saturday, June 28, 2014

Hellenica Characters: Brasidas

"You could have me outnumbered twenty to one and I would still have the advantage."

Spoken like a true Spartan!

This week we're revealing Brasidas, an elite Spartan soldier who embodies his city-state's ideals of bravery, honor, pragmatism, martial prowess, and rigid adherence to authority. He also happens to be the butt of most of Diona's jokes. No one ever said being Spartan was easy!

We wanted Brasidas to come off as a fairly typical Spartan warrior, at least until you get to know him better. Also, while much of the world of Hellenica has been transformed by the ongoing steam-powered revolution, Sparta's mostly stuck to its traditions. To that end, we set out to design "The Spartan Warrior", with some welcome touches from YDY to fit it into our aesthetic. Here's the first stab at it:

Well, I certainly wouldn't want to start a fight with him.

Brasidas is one of our strong male leads, and this initial attempt satisfied that need pretty well for us. There were just a couple things we had to fix up:
 - That iconic horsehair crest atop his helmet was actually reserved for officers or generals. Brasidas is just your average soldier, so that had to go.
 - While Brasidas has seen his fair share of battles, we didn't want his armor to look too shoddy. The cracks and wear in his legguards needed to be reined in.
 - We thought his legs could stand (ha) to be a big more muscular.

Looking good. We wanted to go after the iconic Spartan red for his cape, and for his armor, we stuck to the metals we know they had back then: iron, brass, and copper. Here's the first rough color:

I can't tell you how nice it is to work with artists that can get this close on the first try! Actually, it's my blog post, so I guess I can. (It's really nice.)

Our only qualm here was that the armor looked a bit more golden than we had wanted. As I mentioned before, we complete our portraits in batches, which gave us the ability to look at all of our Spartan characters and standardize their armor across the board. Awesome!

Here's Brasidas with his new set donned:

As always, once we're happy with how things are looking, the guys at YDY do a final pass for lighting and atmospherics. Here's the final image we'll be using in-game:

We're really happy with how Brasidas turned out. He adds some nice diversity to our cast, so I'm jazzed that he's finally making his appearance in the game.

'Til next time!

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