The Kindred Wilds
With her village on the brink of starvation, Keyleth must venture into the forest to restore the balance in nature; but when she encounters the dark forest spirits, she must form an unlikely alliance with a trapped spirit animal. Ultimately learning that the evil forces are not all that they seem.
We began our team project with an initial idea to create a cinematic trailer for a 1st person fantasy adventure game. We researched several mythologies to base the initial ideas off of, and then moved on to planning the story, cinematics, and game mechanics.
Our next steps involved collecting references for several aspects of the trailer: the main character, the environment, creatures, and hero assets.
With a large collection of references, we started to look at storyboarding the trailer. We wanted to use the environment to visually tell the story of the game. Therefore, we looked at various environment scenes which highlighted different aspects of the 'forest' in which the player would encounter: a trapped forest spirit, an evil forest spirit lurking in the dark, the goddess' domain in the mountains, and the forest floor glowing at night.
The storyboard went through several drafts. We produced an animatic for the finalised storyboard so we could work out timings and evaluate whether we wanted a voice-over. Holly wrote the script that we would use for the voice-over.
The concept artist in our team produced drawings for the players' character ('Keyleth'), the goddess, the forest 'wisps', and the king. We would later use these designs for the introduction to the trailer in which we flip through a storybook featuring drawings of the game's history.
We then moved on to produce concepts for the 'forest spirit' creature featured in the trailer.
Next, we moved on to drawing a floor-plan and then blocking-out the environments in UE 4.26. We also began modelling assets in Maya and 3DsMax. Holly handled the environment art in UE4 (and modelled some assets), Ellie&Vanessa 3D modelled assets, Naz modelled and textured the cat creature, and Rodrigo would start the drawings for the book pages intro.
Below are process shots of the village houses created by Vanessa.
Small lighting test by Holly.
Progress on the assets and environment scenes.
Naz modelled and textured the cat creature. Vanessa then rigged the mesh so that we could position it lying down in the cage, and Holly then animated the creature to turn it's head towards the camera and imported into the UE4 scene.
Below is the animatic Rodrigo produced for the storybook introduction.
These are the drawings Rodrigo has created for the pages of the storybook. Holly used them as textures in Substance Painter when making the book material.
Vanessa created an alpha for the book cover with the trailers name 'The Kindred Wilds'. Holly modelled, animated and textured the pages and then imported to UE4 where she set up the sequencer to time the page flips with the voice-over.
This screenshot shows the iterations of tests and rough-cuts on Vimeo that we produced for the trailer.
The final environments created by Holly in UE 4.26 using assets created by Ellie, Naz and Vanessa, Megascans assets for set-dressing, and Redwood Forest Biome pack from Epic Games Marketplace.
Voice-over actress found using Backstage.com. Trailer edited by Holly.
The finished trailer for 'The Kindred Wilds'.