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Flyn : Carnet de Bord

DevBlog > article

Draw me a Bud

By Zbast - Thursday July 05, 2012
This time, let's talk textures, shapes, colours and volumes. Far from the incomprehensible (but fascinating!) lines of code, my work consists of populating the world of FLY'N and bringing it to life. We have always wanted to create a really rich universe packed with diverse wildlife, plant-wise as well as animal-wise. Little by little, in other posts, we'll discuss the other characters and the categories they belong to, but today, what we're really interested in is our lovely little Buds.

Flyn is clearly the character who has changed the least over time.
In the beginning, there was nothing. An idea, a few collision boxes in the programmer-blue void of an editor in its infancy, a bluish protozoa and a whole load of ambition for the new project that we were about to embark on. The little protozoa was Flyn, and he's been our main character ever since that fateful day when Crounchann came to us, a little smile on his face and a few sheets of notes in his hand, to announce his new idea. Why would we rework a character that we found so endearing right from the start, and around whom we based all of our first ideas? All the same, a whole lot has changed between then and now. Back then, Flyn was the only one able to explore the countless branches of his world, and he could use all sorts of things around him to take wing. However, we soon started thinking up new concepts, one thing led to another, and one fine day three more Buds appeared to end Flyn's days of solitude.

Lyft had to be round or have some kind of cyclic structure so he could interact well with any kind of surface.

My first task when we started the project was to take little Flyn, build him, give him the right colours and proportions and bring him to life with a range of animations, basic to start with, for all the initial setting up and tuning that you have to do when you start making a game: the proportions of the characters on the screen, the speed they move at, the style and rhythm of their animations, and so on. Since they came from the trees, the Buds had to be able to "feel" and see like the Trees did, to understand the breezes and voices all around them. Subtle vision followed on from that idea, and we created a wide range of variations in design and animation in order to integrate this feature fully. All of these adjustments were pretty heavy going, but once the fundamentals were done and dusted, we were ready to start creating his sidekicks. A ton of suggestions were made at that point. We wanted the characters to complement one another as much as possible, but we also wanted to keep them very different in terms of their methods. That's how Lyft the bush, Ywok the bouncy ball and Nyls the supersonic Bud were born. Obviously, they looked somewhat different at the start... Here are a few examples of what they might have become:

Like Lyft, Ywok's design was very much based on the game's geometry.

As you can see, I've dug deep into our archives to pull out this stuff about how we progressed and all the choices we made, for better or for worse, when creating Flyn and his world.

With versions based on pondskaters, carrots and jellyfish, Nyls too went through a whole load of changes (some good, some not so good!) before we got him right.

That's all from me about our charismatic little heroes. Next time, bring your gardeners' gloves and we'll take a little walk around the garden!

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