For my 3rd year independent work I worked on this creature and developed it further for which I decided to focus on the use of armour and saddle variations in games like Witcher 3 to incorporate different ideas. It's main inspirations are from Final fantasy and Blizzard designs.
Over the past few months I've been working on a design of a mount that would be in a free roam game. The mountable bird can glide yet not fly, hence the name. I wanted a more approachable and friendly aspect to the creature. The concepts were developed using Procreate and Photoshop. From the size chart you can see the creature is around 7ft tall, and would be based in a swamp biome in a crystal forest given the elements incorporated in the design
The first design which is the standard of the Wetlands Glidestrider has crystal horns in the back of the skull with fungi growing into the body giving camouflage to its natural habitat.
When silhouetting I originally had an almost raptor appearance that felt too threatening for a player to ride, yet I knew I wanted strong wide legs and a reasonable wing span for the creature. I used shape theory to really change the look of the creature
When designing the creature in more depth I looked at ideals that the artists of Final Fantasy use and developed the bone structure for the creature based of the elephant bird and other land species. For use of colour I took a page from Blizzard and left the top half of the mount with strong vibrant colours and the lower half in contrast dark hues. Giving a vocal point for the player in theory.
For the saddle and armour the original concept was based of elven designs considering the use of woodland elves being the riders of these creatures. I did further experimentation into variations such as armoured, scout as well as winter designs. I think this helps indicate how these creatures would vary in a world.
Currently in the process of designing the species that would use these creatures day to day. They are similar and use the biome that surrounds them as well as the branches that grow through their bodies.