Monday, 29 December 2014

An example of the graphics going not-so-well

Monday, 29 December 2014
I want to show you how my art can go quite wrong. I'm currently working on the Droid pod (the Mk6), a single use light-jumping lump for delivering Droids to a distant system. The idea for the pods has been around for years, inspired by the Apollo Command Module. Here's the description from the Fleet setting book:
A Droid pod is an egg shaped one-use space craft that can perform a single light jump up to 4 units (4 squares on the cluster map). A pod carries a selection of Droids with the intention of landing on a planet, securing a manufacturing facility and then destroying all life. Pods carry a variety of Droids up to Mark 3. All Droids in a pod are the same variant.
So I started with 8 Droids Mk3s facing outwards. Even if a few are mashed in the landing, there's plenty there to ruin the day of a player team of Troopers. I began by arranging the Droids in a circle and then built the pod around them using lots of octagon sections and cloning in a circle. I stopped when I got this far:

It had the right kind of feel to it but looked a little too much like this:

Which is a Warhammer 40K Space Marine Drop Pod. I know I can't invent everything afresh but I think my model cuts a bit too close to the bone on this one.

Stop, salvage, start again

At times like this, you can either keep going or salvage what you can and start again. For me, I can't put art into a book that is so close to something else. Anyone would have thought that I had copied the Space Marine Pod. Perhaps there was a subconscious draw toward the familiar. I can salvage the eight Mk3s in the middle but the outside is going to have to go. I might have to be a bit more literal with the egg shape. I hope that these thoughts give a little solace to other RPG authors who struggle with their art; you're not alone!

I'll post up the finished Droid Mk6 pod when it is complete.
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