Developer Update: New Art & Gameplay Clarity
With Chuk & Christian
Hey friends, MLC St3alth here with another update!
Today I’ll be grabbing two of our art leads and letting you take a closer look into the Season 5 Conquest map art direction.
Everyone has different toasters. Some might have little dials that toast your bread longer. Others might have colorful lights that shine for all to see. No matter your toaster, we want it to be able to run SMITE. Whenever we improve the art in any of our games, performance is always at the forefront of our minds. We want to make sure that everyone who is currently able to play SMITE will continue to be able to after the update.The team is focused on making sure the update will run as close to, if not smoother than, current SMITE on lower end machines while still looking awesome.
Without further ado, here is a message from SMITE Art Director, Chuk and our SMITE Environmental Lead, Christian:
With SMITE, we are always working to update the look of the game, and we alternate through the maps one at a time.
Last season, we updated Clash to its current Egyptian theme, and made some very conscious artistic and stylistic changes to the environment art.
The goals of this were:
Make the art more exaggerated and fun
Allow the background (the map) to be a little more consistent so Gods and abilities stand out from the environment
Decrease the overall contrast/noise to make the map more relaxing on the eyes
Since the redo, we found the new Clash map to be much more enjoyable to play on, and we set out to recreate that magic in the Season 5 Conquest map.
The artistic achievements we’ve been striving for in the rebuilding of the S5 Conquest map are:
Capture the fun look, consistent tone, and easy-on-the-eyes style that have been established in our new environments.
Have very distinct visual themes, coloration, and context for all of the jungle camps
Have vertical landmarks that make it easier to navigate to the map
Bring back fog to make the Jungle more scary to be in, and to also give some visual basis to support the shorter character clip out distance
We used the concept of the “Risen Underworld” to give us a good context to have the two sides of the map be VERY visually distinct from one another.
This not only makes the map more interesting, it makes the two sides of the map much clearer and more distinct from one another. The rift down the center provides a cool way for us to landmark the center of the map. It also provides some context that makes the two bases being right next to each other slightly more believable.https://imgur.com/Ctgthjo
We wanted very distinct areas that support the Major Camps, Gold Fury and Fire Giant.https://imgur.com/oeU6WS9
We’ve learned a lot about what makes Titans feel good over the years, and we redesigned them specifically to apply this knowledge.
The Titans are now lore inspired!
We made them ground based because flying titans make it harder to judge their position and hit area
They now only have overhand attack animations making it much easier to see who the Titan is focusing with its attacks
We made some other cool updates, synergizing the art and gameplay. The Phoenix wells now open and close reinforcing the state the Phoenix is in. We’ve also greatly improved the readability of weaker “reborn” phoenixes.
Chuk, SMITE Art Director
Christian, SMITE Environment Lead
That’s it for today! What do you guys think? We’re super excited to share this with you and are looking forward to hearing feedback.