Added: Lerone Hollifield - Date: 18.10.2021 08:30 - Views: 42666 - Clicks: 8972
Shovel Knight is a game which draws on what we loved about des from the 80s. But some of those 80s concepts can be a bit outmoded today, especially in regards to gender. After making some missteps with projects, we wanted to make sure that Shovel Knight was more inclusive and not so regressive.
Posted: Mar 2, Subject s : Shovel Knight: Shovel of Hope. However, we already had made an oversight with the balance of characters in Shovel Knight- almost all of the main characters were male!
The female cast in both of those games consists of either token additions or damsels in distress. We wanted to do something to better address this oversight, but the des were all done and the game was in production. Luckily, the Kickstarter funding model let us offer an option: Body Swap! The concept behind Body Swap originally called Gender Swap was that all of the male characters would become female, and vice versa. But after some discussions both internal and external, we quickly realized that we could do more than just a simple reversing of all the genders of the characters.
After all, there is an enormous spectrum of genders or labels that players might want to customize! However, we also had to balance the scope of the feature, so we came up with this feature set:. Each of these character swaps could be controlled independently, to give whatever mix of character bodies the player wanted.
Finally, in English, the pronouns for each of the characters could also be swapped, so you could have a female character, referred to as her, with a masculine body or vice versa! This would all be controlled by a simple menu. Notice the use of male and female symbols- we thought these symbols would be more inclusive than written labels.
So, those are the basics. But we always try to do the best to listen to our body swap games, and make things that hopefully everyone can enjoy!
Now for the fun part- the actual des of the characters! With that enthusiasm, we set to work! We had to create new character des that were very true to their characters! To do so, we created some guidelines:. Body swaps should be exactly as gendered as the body swap games character.
Meanwhile a handsome character like Propeller Knight could have a sexier female version! The des should be balanced with their counterparts. Body Swaps should match the existing personality of the characters exactly. After all, the dialogue would be exactly the same, and the boss battles and mannerisms of the characters. Gameplay must remain identical! The Body Swaps have the same hitboxes and code as the original characters. This means that the sizes and shapes of the characters had to be identical to their original forms. Characters should be differentiable in pixel art. There is a surprising amount of tweaking to even get the characters to look clean and readable in pixel.
With the Body Swaps, we had the additional challenge of making the characters look different than their counterparts, and still look readable! This was an enormous challenge. Enough explanation and rules! King Knight! King Knight was good for bending, testing, and addressing all the limitations of our ruleset. Here is the initial sketch we did:. A queen is the most obvious direction, and we believed we could make it work inside our own restrictions.
Here, we explore a bit with her personality and attire. Notice how the second from the top left is a bit too close to the original version. This looked great, although the hat and helmet broke our cross-dress rule a bit. It looked like the original King Knight just threw on a new hat, so we had to make some small revisions for the Final Sprite!
Note, we felt this character deserved a full name change — Queen Knight. We felt that since those titles king and queen are so strongly gendered, we should make the change in this body swap games. The image above gives a little look into our development tools.
The blue boxes are for their defense hit box. And red is where they attack. For Shovel Knight, we started out with some very basic ideas. These are some of the more experimental des. Adjustments were made to include metal skirts, segmented armor plating, circular pauldrons, etc. When compared to the original Shovel Knight de, we found that the female version started to lose her charm the more unique we tried to make her look. Large changes like adding a chainmail skirt or long flowing hair to Shovel Knight defined the character in a way we had not intended.
By the end, the body swapped version of our main protagonist looked relatively close to our original concept. Aside from the shape of the body, the changes that were made to the armor are so lateral that some people might not even be able to spot the differences.
We wanted the lead of our game to have the same impact regardless of gender, and this de accomplishes that goal. When it came to Shield Knight, we went with the same basic principle; keep the simplicity of the armor while changing the shape of the body.
But we still explored des with skirts. Here is the final sketch of male Shield Knight. Aesthetically, he looks much closer to his female counterpart than Shovel Knight does to her doppelganger! The pauldrons as well as his helmet have also been reduced in size to appear more masculine. Female shield knight is very spirited and embodies adventure!
We believe the male version nicely captures the essence the female de displayed. We tried to create pieces that enforced slight tweaks to the silhouette — the pauldrons were a big force in achieving that direction. The tassets were added to try to provide a more menacing look. The gems on his chest are supposed to look like eyes! The armor is imposing, but still very sleek. Both bodies for Black Knight remain androgynous. He went in many different directions before we got the de right. We moved towards a bulkier samurai inspired de instead. One of our artists was likely playing a lot of Ganondorf in Smash, as you can see elements of his same cold, mean spirit in this de.
The enchanter was the first de we made that was vastly different from the original. But we found it still captured the same striking, cold disposition of the original de. Does that mean masculine Mole Knight is balding? The des began arguably more complex than the masculine counterpart, and we did our best to simplify it.
But in the end like how a female opera costume is usually more complex than a masculine costume we added more segmented pieces of armor and other elements body swap games. Plague Knight was particularly tricky due to not leaning particularly one way or the other in the gender spectrum. So we decided a costume change was the best way to distinguish the two forms. We found the small details where the hood turns into a witch hat to be charming! We tried a couple things to widen her shape including adding huge shoulder p and armor but that all felt external to her. The brilliant discovery that led us on our current path was the idea of giant, thick hair braids.
That afforded us the opportunity to maintain her pose and attitude and also let her have the same broad proportions that her hitboxes demanded! Instead of body swap games spiked shoulder p, we moved those elements to her forearms. Overall, Polar Knight was one of the toughest des, but maybe the most successful! Embracing the elegant masculinity that the original de exuded, we pursued a body type with more curvy, exaggerated feminine features. Feminine propeller body swap games is just as sexy as masculine propeller knight and both counterparts are more than willing to flaunt it in all their poses!
Since an exaggerated personality is always easier to work through than the more subtle approaches in the other characters, this de was one of the easiest — it went through very little iteration. For Specter Knight, who already has a flowing cloak, we tried deing some more elaborate dresses while keeping her motifs the same: bones, skulls, and tattered but ornamental clothing.
However, these additions ended up being too complex, ornate, or otherwise superfluous. The final de for feminine Specter Knight retains the tattered dress, and has a little bone ornamentation here and there. Once again, making the characters fit into the same visual space was paramount. It would have been cool to change up her weapon too, maybe a bone scythe or something. But we wanted to remain closer to the original intention of the character.
The pixel model is so small that we were worried about the differences even showing up! We figured we could enhance the effect by making the animation poses a bit different, but we still needed to explore the de. The de worked surprisingly well, given the limited changes! But something was still missing. The masculine Tinker Knight has a deep gouge in his mask, so we decided to give female tinker a new detail like that. We added an extra bolt onto her mask, figuring that she added it to repair some damage or something.
Sometimes, the smallest changes are the most effective ones! Treasure Knight provided a similar challenge to Polar Knight- creating a female character that allowed a similar size and silhouette to work within the boundaries of the hit boxes. And like Polar Knight, this character was one of the most fun to rede! First, we decided to make the oxygen tank on her back into a dual-chambered one, to bulk out her form a bit more.
Male Treasure Knight wears a weird kind of bomber jacket, but a trenchcoat felt more natural for female Treasure Knight, especially with the added bulk it afforded. For her mask, we tried to riff on the original de, but it looked too top heavy and awkward.
Instead, we swapped it for an oval de, but retained the characteristic fin and mask shape. With her haughty pose and waist-cinched trench coat, Treasure Knight almost looks like a film noir gumshoe! We all fell in love with this de.
Though she is a bit more bottom heavy, the oxygen tanks allowed us to retain the pixel form and keep her in line with the other de.
What do you think?! Games and the game industry can always be improved and made even better in regard to welcoming everyone. We also really hope everyone likes Body Swap and has fun seeing their favorite characters in a new way! Hopefully we can bring smiles to more faces! Deing Body Swap Shovel Knight is a game which draws on what we loved about des from the 80s.Body swap games
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Deing Body Swap