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This article is the first in a series of three, in which we will introduce you to the different skills and professions at work in the graphics team, and also show you all the steps that must be completed before our artistic endeavors are ready for you to discover inside the game.


For years, we have followed many of the talented artists who share their creative creations with other players on the forums. We really enjoy following those who share, not only their passion for drawing, animation, level design, etc, but also their advice and works-in-progress! I regularly hang out on specific topics, and it’s a rare day when I don’t find some very pleasant surprises!

That’s why today, the graphic team wanted to play our part in the creative community by revealing to you the various stages of creation of new content in DOFUS.
We will break down the process of creating a cinematic cut-scene, a monster’s animations, and finally, the graphics and level design necessary for creating a new area in the game.

This series will also switch things up a bit, there will not be as much text. It should be no shock that the graphics team prefers to use visuals! If you enjoy this type of presentation, let us hear from you so we can repeat them more often!

Let’s begin with a video of Ben Pirate, who’s drawing the key frame of a piece from our newest animated cut-scene.
 

Once the initial sketch is complete, it is immediately scanned.

From here, the design changes hands and is sent to Vadim, the designer who cleans and converts this drawing, line-by-line, into a vector illustration so it can be animated:

With this virtual tracing complete and the art vectorized, it’s back to Ben Pirate, who adds new layers of detail to the drawing before starting to incorporate some of the background décor, with assistance from Lorko.

At this point, we have a solid foundation from which to begin to integrate the animation. To ensure top cinematic quality, the file leaves the DOFUS team at this point, and is passed to two animators who usually work on Ankama’s animated series.

Rumo creates the animatic (a dymanic story-board) of the movements of the sprites as they exist in-game so they can be adapted by the animators.

David is given the task of animating Dramak the Schemer, as you can see below:

Meanwhile, Celine is taking care of the puppets:

Then, they work together to animate the entire scene, while respecting the parameters set by the animatic.

And finally, after these two have completed their collaboration, it’s sent to Martin, who handles the compositing! It’s with this step that the atmosphere and tone of the scene is set, plunging you into an epic and immersive cut-scene!



And finally, before it all goes into the game, sound designer Greg adds the aural stimulation.

But, since we are a bit sadistic here, we’re going to make you wait a little longer before showing you the entire scene… You’ll have to fight your way through Dramak’s Theater to experience it for yourself!

See you again soon for part 2: Animating a Monster where Rumo will show you how we create the attack and walking animation for a new monster!

Aasimar
 

Category: Community - Game design