Darksiders

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A good article as usual but I feel you wern't exactly giving War a fair chance there Mr. Croshaw.
Ok, sure it's overdone and all that but the evaluation was a lot more biased than the other characters. The hood over his head could have been because War isn't actually a person, it's a...war? The faces could symbolise his connection with demons, fighting them or whatever he does, I don't remember. Perhaps he wears so much armour because, well, he's War, what do you expect a tiger suit? His giant hand could show his strength and the white hair his age because War is conflict and conflict has been around since the dawn of man. These are just some specuations. As for the sword, well, it might be over-sized, but he is war...

At this point I'd like to point out I have no direct experience with the game...

On the disproportionate arms:

I think it's mentioned in some comic that came out for promotional purposes or something that War's Left Arm is artificial since it got chopped off or something. His bosses decided to give him the Ed Elric treatment and strap some special prosthetic or whatever.

Not justifying it. Still, like someone earlier the artstyle does appeal to the inner 14-year olds like how Warhammer 40,000 does with it's excessiveness.

his is a good example of why Yahtzee needs to stop trying to make serious points. He doesn't want people just saying that they think War looks cool, but when it comes down to analyzing his character design, the best he can do is to list a bunch of things, and then say that those things don't look cool.

For an actual analysis-

First off, War isn't human. He's War. The hood hides his face and makes his glowing eyes stand out. The overly elaborate designs on some of his armor and sword are part of that as well- they don't look like something you'd see on a human because War is not human. The long white air also gives a sense of age, helping to cast War as something ancient. Oh, and his huge left gauntlet is a weapon. That's pretty obvious to anybody who isn't being willfully stupid.

The character's torn cloak makes him look like he just came from a battle. Again, appropriate for War.

The character's color scheme uses a classic three color design: two main colors (red and grey) with goldish highlights. The grey fits because of the armor. Red has had a long association with war and bloodshed. The gold contrasts the two, but is a neutral enough color not to clash.

The character's broad design also fits the general concept of War. He's not a precision instrument; he's a large, powerful bruiser. Not only that, but he contrasts with the other characters in the game. When you have a bunch of angles and demons fighting, War can walk in and look distinctive. If he looked like every other character in the game, it would be a less impressive effect.

All in all, Yahtzee fails to raise any valid points about his design. In fact, I don't think Yahtzee really understand aesthetic design at all. He doesn't argue from any established or explained principles, he just tries to justify his argument with snark. The best example of this: One of the most accepted principles of character design is that the character should be distinctive by silhouette alone. So what does Yahtzee do? Complain about everything that makes his silhouette distinctive, of course.

Of course, it wouldn't be a Yahtzee article without massive doses of hypocrisy, so I'll just go easy and point out that the Heavy in TF2 has just as distorted bodily proportions as War does. In fact, he's worse.

Dont Fear The Reaper:
I was hoping he would trash Warhammer 40k and finally accomplish his task of alienating every fanbase in the world, but a good article nonetheless.

He'll have plenty of opportunities to do that when the Warhammer 40k space marine game comes out

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFHKIFDjk9I

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ostro-whiskey:

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13752:

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Shamanic Rhythm:

ostro-whiskey:

Oh contraire, In Warhammer many parties have resorted to melee combat for whatever reason, so that is why it makes sense. I dont see any "symbolic contents" it seems to like like you're just trying to be conceited. Again you try to say that something in which you have claims is "incoherent and varied", you clearly do not realize the stupididty in this, as I have already pointed out that you have no standing to be able to make such a claim. Perhaps you need to choose your words more carefully.

I never said Fantasy is a liscence to do whatever you want, you are putting words in my mouth, I said the concept behind trying to find fault in the design and practicality of items in a Fantasy world is absolutely stupid.

I'm guessing since you're not down with the whole symbolism thing, you're also not too good with irony.

It is not at all stupid to criticise the practicality of fantasy. You only achieve willing suspension of disbelief if you have coherent logic behind the fantastical concepts you introduce into the world. In literature, a plot resolution achieved through an external device is known as "deus ex machina", and it tends to alienate readers because if you establish boundaries with logical limits, you're expected to stay within them for a resolution. The same principle applies to the practicality of fantasy designs. If we see characters fighting with swords, we expect primitive combat governed by the laws of physics. If you break something like this and create a justification for it that doesn't fit coherently into the overall tenor of your fantasy world, it makes it harder for audiences to willingly suspend disbelief.

How can you claim to know the logic behind a fantasy concept. The fact that it is fantasy is indicative that our logic does not comply. We can safely assume that the guy from Darksiders is closer to a robot than a human, therefore you point is, once again, idiotic. You have yet to clarify what you meant by the "symbolic contents" of the armor, ofcoure its quite likely you were just talking out of your ass.

Uhh there is logic in every single fantasy story that there is. Only a fool tries to argue that our logic does not apply when our logic is applied to these worlds all the time.

Ohh, you must be referring to the logic of magic, and midichlorians. Lets not forget the logic of monsters and the supernatural. Nice one douchebag.

logic doesn't have to be realistic. Logic is just a set of rules that apply to a setting.

Wtf ?
Do you even know what you're saying. Logic is the act of reasoning, from your response you dont seem to have much.

Logic is also a given system of reasoning. It's this aspect of logic being employed to varying degrees in any
fctitious work. All fiction in order to work has to be internally consistent. So rather than anyone else not having logic I would say that, that award belongs to you. Supernatural entities typically have hierarchies, dispositions and so forth. Just look at how angels are organized in Judaism and Christianity and tell me that there is no reasoning behind the organization of these entities.

Well this is actually a bad example, because the thought that a High Being such as God, would possess the anthropomorphic traits of servitude and egocentrism is pretty irrational. As such the entire Judeo Christian religion was organized in such a way as to keep the plebian masses from questioning their rulers by making them believe there was a higher purpose to being pacifistic, servile and docile. So the point doest really apply here. Also I never claimed that the entire Fantasy world could throw rationality to the wind, I claimed you cannot claim something to be illogical when regarding something such as magic, which already defies logic.

Except things like magic and so forth don't necessarily defy logic, the way characters behave in fictional worlds, the arts they practice all have rules and limitations imposed on them by their creators. They tend to be internally consistent. The angelic hierarchy is a perfect example of this. All of our laws function on the same principle they have no meaning aside from what we say they mean, but we still go through the trouble of making them consistent within the framework that we ccreate even though they don't have any real meaning outside of our own. Further you contradict yourself by saying that you cannot claim that something that defies logic cannot be called illogical while saying at the same time that you are not saying that a fantasy world can throw logic to the wind. If you can't claim that something in a fantasy world is internally inconsistent (illogical) then that world has to be able to throw logic to the wind. If it cannot do that then you must be able to say that elements of a fantasy world are nonsensical.

Of course the real issue with War's design isn't whether or not his design is internally consistent. It is whether that design allows people to sufficiently suspend disbelief. In addition it is a question of whether War's design makes him distinct as a character. Does he look like anything? Can you pick him out instantly? Is he memorable? Is the player able to take him seriously in his assigned role?

I grow weary of your malcontent, you seem to just be repeating yourself, highlighitng the same crap you were previously. I never contradicted myself, in a fantasy world they have logical laws, the laws of physics, laws of matter ,mathematics, these universal laws are consistent. However from our context magic is completely illogical, it is not bound by any sense of rational thought. Furthermore the fact that you a trying to prove your point by a single flimsy example is pretty pathetic to say the least because there are countless fantasy stories, most of which are different.

You seem to have a problem understanding my point so Ill put it to you this way. How can you say that a 1. A creature that is magical in essence, does not need 2. Bulky over compensaroty armor when 3. A guy would explode your gooch with lightening crackeling from his fingertips.

Im not sure what your problem is, I think your trying too hard to justify why you dislike something on a personal level. The character fits into its assigned world, and is believable in its role. I had a harder time believing how Gnomes were meant to contend with ravaging demons in Wow, but within the context of that world it makes sense.

It's actually very easy to point out if a costume that a character wears is impractical or not. Ask any cosplayer how well they can move, walk around, and stand for hours in they costume that they are replicating, and you'll have your answer.

And when I say "costume", I mean the works: hair, accessories, anything that you see the character using with attire on a daily basis.

And now I will have nightmares about someone attempting to cosplay War.

I don't have any real interest in this game, I haven't read all the posts here, and I know next to nothing about the story. But I have two several thoughts, perhaps others have already stated them with more ethos:

This is an embodiment of War but it is also the embodiment of a horseman. I can't imagine a horse carrying that unbalanced thing on it's back.

This is War, and war is messy. war doesn't always make a lot of sense. So maybe War shouldn't either. If I was playing as War, he would have to fit with my concept of war even if it sacrificed gameplay.

"War is hell." -William Tecumseh Sherman, U.S. Civil War General. Since war is a human activity War should reflect our wars.

War should have a British Royal Air Force bulls-eye on one shoulder and a Nazi swastika on the other. His helmet should have G.I. stamped on it. A hammer and sickle should be on his left and right kneecaps. Finally, he should have some French symbol from WWII but I don't know any. And that's just one of our wars. Sadly, that might offend someone and we can't have that in a video game.

These are my thoughts about War in Darksiders. They are the worst kind of opinion.

Uninformed

ostro-whiskey:
Lol, I found this pretty amusing. It sounds like an attempt made by Yahtzee to try an justify his comments on design, but the fact that he tries to comment on the PRACTICALITY of a FANTASY character just makes him look stupid.

Fantasy requires a suspension of disbelief, does anyone ask why in Tolkiens Lord of the Rings world that in 3000 years people are still running around with medieval weaponry. The same goes with Warhammer 40k, and I suppose Darksiders.

For a man who got a bookdeal Yahtzee doesnt seem to be able to detract from a shallow aesthetic value, maybe he should look into it.

Awful comment, just awful. You completely missed the point. Over-designed characters in comic books, for instance, are often acceptable. It depends on the visual medium they are designed for. His entire point is that it doesn't work specifically in a video game setting, as you need to be able to recognize characters quickly and often from a distance. War's over-design makes the game more difficult to view, as your screen becomes cluttered and over-crowded.

Also I'm reminded of playing pretend with friends when I was a kid. My friend and I got into a fight because he said he had claws that were '10 feet long'. I argued that it was stupid. You couldn't fight with 10 foot long claws. You wouldn't even be able to move. He said it didn't matter because it was 'cool'.

Fantasy characters or not, they have to make visual sense. If they don't, you're drawn out of the experience and your suspension of disbelief goes out the window. Suspension of disbelief isn't something that you automatically achieve by just saying "it's fantasy, you have to believe everything I say because it isn't real". You have to earn it. You have to create a world that makes sense. Even stylized visuals need to make some degree of sense. WAR isn't ridiculous because of his exaggerated features, he's ridiculous because of the over-compensatory details pasted onto his body in an attempt to give him 'character'.

Also, am I the only one who thinks the biggest offense about War is how completely silly his tiny, tiny head looks? It looks like they put a pea on top of a headless body builder.

I might be in the wrong place here since i actually like Joe Madureira's style,not shure about the transition to 3d tho.But id rather have a Khorne marine over capitan-boring all day every day.(the marine beeing War and the cpt. beein all the well designed but borin characters i see allover the place)

BehattedWanderer:
Any one else wonder why medieval plate mail always has one shoulder bigger than the other? Or is that some kind of functional thing I'm unaware of?

The larger shoulder was worn on the arm that carried the sword. The proper stance against an opponent was to stand sideways, much like fencing, so that shoulder needed more protection. Subsequently, the other side would need less protection if that arm was carrying a large enough shield.

AcacianLeaves:

ostro-whiskey:
Lol, I found this pretty amusing. It sounds like an attempt made by Yahtzee to try an justify his comments on design, but the fact that he tries to comment on the PRACTICALITY of a FANTASY character just makes him look stupid.

Fantasy requires a suspension of disbelief, does anyone ask why in Tolkiens Lord of the Rings world that in 3000 years people are still running around with medieval weaponry. The same goes with Warhammer 40k, and I suppose Darksiders.

For a man who got a bookdeal Yahtzee doesnt seem to be able to detract from a shallow aesthetic value, maybe he should look into it.

Awful comment, just awful. You completely missed the point. Over-designed characters in comic books, for instance, are often acceptable. It depends on the visual medium they are designed for. His entire point is that it doesn't work specifically in a video game setting, as you need to be able to recognize characters quickly and often from a distance. War's over-design makes the game more difficult to view, as your screen becomes cluttered and over-crowded.

Also I'm reminded of playing pretend with friends when I was a kid. My friend and I got into a fight because he said he had claws that were '10 feet long'. I argued that it was stupid. You couldn't fight with 10 foot long claws. You wouldn't even be able to move. He said it didn't matter because it was 'cool'.

Fantasy characters or not, they have to make visual sense. If they don't, you're drawn out of the experience and your suspension of disbelief goes out the window. Suspension of disbelief isn't something that you automatically achieve by just saying "it's fantasy, you have to believe everything I say because it isn't real". You have to earn it. You have to create a world that makes sense. Even stylized visuals need to make some degree of sense. WAR isn't ridiculous because of his exaggerated features, he's ridiculous because of the over-compensatory details pasted onto his body in an attempt to give him 'character'.

Also, am I the only one who thinks the biggest offense about War is how completely silly his tiny, tiny head looks? It looks like they put a pea on top of a headless body builder.

Well said.

None of that changes the fact that War looks like a big pile of crap though does it?

War looks silly, just like this
image

One problem I think with all art for games is:

1) 8 bit era games look bad so over the top dawning helps make it look better. So the end user would feel that because the it looked like a stick with some shit on its head was really a hero.

2) Once games got more powerful GPUs we end up with more and more artists, that wish to take there art in to the game.

3) Once artists can put there art in to a game one can say is it for the game or is it more for arts sake.

Just more art that gets put in to things, the more I wish they put limit on what can be put in to game.

Its pointless to talk about how practical the kit is as its fantasy. It depends on how far you can suspend disbelief.

Having said that it looks like Joe Madureira started drawing and no one told him when to stop. I hope to see him retire from game art in the near future. It looks terrible.

Just because you can draw something, doesn't mean you should.

PlasticLion:
Finally, he should have some French symbol from WWII but I don't know any.

A white flag?

ostro-whiskey:

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13752:

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Shamanic Rhythm:

ostro-whiskey:

Oh contraire, In Warhammer many parties have resorted to melee combat for whatever reason, so that is why it makes sense. I dont see any "symbolic contents" it seems to like like you're just trying to be conceited. Again you try to say that something in which you have claims is "incoherent and varied", you clearly do not realize the stupididty in this, as I have already pointed out that you have no standing to be able to make such a claim. Perhaps you need to choose your words more carefully.

I never said Fantasy is a liscence to do whatever you want, you are putting words in my mouth, I said the concept behind trying to find fault in the design and practicality of items in a Fantasy world is absolutely stupid.

I'm guessing since you're not down with the whole symbolism thing, you're also not too good with irony.

It is not at all stupid to criticise the practicality of fantasy. You only achieve willing suspension of disbelief if you have coherent logic behind the fantastical concepts you introduce into the world. In literature, a plot resolution achieved through an external device is known as "deus ex machina", and it tends to alienate readers because if you establish boundaries with logical limits, you're expected to stay within them for a resolution. The same principle applies to the practicality of fantasy designs. If we see characters fighting with swords, we expect primitive combat governed by the laws of physics. If you break something like this and create a justification for it that doesn't fit coherently into the overall tenor of your fantasy world, it makes it harder for audiences to willingly suspend disbelief.

How can you claim to know the logic behind a fantasy concept. The fact that it is fantasy is indicative that our logic does not comply. We can safely assume that the guy from Darksiders is closer to a robot than a human, therefore you point is, once again, idiotic. You have yet to clarify what you meant by the "symbolic contents" of the armor, ofcoure its quite likely you were just talking out of your ass.

Uhh there is logic in every single fantasy story that there is. Only a fool tries to argue that our logic does not apply when our logic is applied to these worlds all the time.

Ohh, you must be referring to the logic of magic, and midichlorians. Lets not forget the logic of monsters and the supernatural. Nice one douchebag.

logic doesn't have to be realistic. Logic is just a set of rules that apply to a setting.

Wtf ?
Do you even know what you're saying. Logic is the act of reasoning, from your response you dont seem to have much.

Logic is also a given system of reasoning. It's this aspect of logic being employed to varying degrees in any
fctitious work. All fiction in order to work has to be internally consistent. So rather than anyone else not having logic I would say that, that award belongs to you. Supernatural entities typically have hierarchies, dispositions and so forth. Just look at how angels are organized in Judaism and Christianity and tell me that there is no reasoning behind the organization of these entities.

Well this is actually a bad example, because the thought that a High Being such as God, would possess the anthropomorphic traits of servitude and egocentrism is pretty irrational. As such the entire Judeo Christian religion was organized in such a way as to keep the plebian masses from questioning their rulers by making them believe there was a higher purpose to being pacifistic, servile and docile. So the point doest really apply here. Also I never claimed that the entire Fantasy world could throw rationality to the wind, I claimed you cannot claim something to be illogical when regarding something such as magic, which already defies logic.

Except things like magic and so forth don't necessarily defy logic, the way characters behave in fictional worlds, the arts they practice all have rules and limitations imposed on them by their creators. They tend to be internally consistent. The angelic hierarchy is a perfect example of this. All of our laws function on the same principle they have no meaning aside from what we say they mean, but we still go through the trouble of making them consistent within the framework that we ccreate even though they don't have any real meaning outside of our own. Further you contradict yourself by saying that you cannot claim that something that defies logic cannot be called illogical while saying at the same time that you are not saying that a fantasy world can throw logic to the wind. If you can't claim that something in a fantasy world is internally inconsistent (illogical) then that world has to be able to throw logic to the wind. If it cannot do that then you must be able to say that elements of a fantasy world are nonsensical.

Of course the real issue with War's design isn't whether or not his design is internally consistent. It is whether that design allows people to sufficiently suspend disbelief. In addition it is a question of whether War's design makes him distinct as a character. Does he look like anything? Can you pick him out instantly? Is he memorable? Is the player able to take him seriously in his assigned role?

I grow weary of your malcontent, you seem to just be repeating yourself, highlighitng the same crap you were previously. I never contradicted myself, in a fantasy world they have logical laws, the laws of physics, laws of matter ,mathematics, these universal laws are consistent. However from our context magic is completely illogical, it is not bound by any sense of rational thought. Furthermore the fact that you a trying to prove your point by a single flimsy example is pretty pathetic to say the least because there are countless fantasy stories, most of which are different.

You seem to have a problem understanding my point so Ill put it to you this way. How can you say that a 1. A creature that is magical in essence, does not need 2. Bulky over compensaroty armor when 3. A guy would explode your gooch with lightening crackeling from his fingertips.

Im not sure what your problem is, I think your trying too hard to justify why you dislike something on a personal level. The character fits into its assigned world, and is believable in its role. I had a harder time believing how Gnomes were meant to contend with ravaging demons in Wow, but within the context of that world it makes sense.

If anyone is repeating the same thing it's you. You keep repeating "It's a fantasy" and multiple people keep explaining why this is not an impenetrable wall to hide behind. Please go actually learn what logic means:

1. the science that investigates the principles governing correct or reliable inference.
2. a particular method of reasoning or argumentation: We were unable to follow his logic.
3. the system or principles of reasoning applicable to any branch of knowledge or study.
4. reason or sound judgment, as in utterances or actions: There wasn't much logic in her move.
5. convincing forcefulness; inexorable truth or persuasiveness: the irresistible logic of the facts.
6. Computers. logic circuit.
Know that anything that has rules has some sort of reasoning behind it, that is why "magic" is not necessarily illogical even if it is something that does not actually work in the real world. There is logic behind the idea of something reducing mass to zero in order to achieve faster than light travel even though we can't actually do such a thing. There is logic behind the suggestion that mass might be negative or more specifically how negative mass would affect the laws of motion. It doesn't matter that we haven't encountered anything with negative mass.

Where did I say anything about mathematics, physics etc? What I said was that you cannot argue that it is impossible to point out that something in a fantasy world is illogical without implicitly arguing that fiction does not need to have any logic at all, which is what makes characters believable in any work of fiction no matter how fantastic.
If you aren't going to read what anyone says and actually use your brain I'm not going to continue.

i must admidt that i think War's design is shit.
and i hate WoW armour designs, with a passion.
but when i asked myself "how whould he look if I should try to design war incarnate?"
Its not like your desinging the devil, death or any of those who can/and proberly whould be in unassuming and cunning forms.

War should be over the topp.
he should embody the epic scale of war, the brutality and savage nature.
and before some of you say "But kratos is that!" I will already stop you there and ask you to think again. kratos is the perfect embodyment of a warrior soul, but not war itself.

how would any of you do it?

You know who had a wonderful character design?

Pacman.

And then they went all overboard with Mrs. Pacman, with the bow and all that nonsense.

I completely agree. It was actually one of the things that told me "no, I really don't want to play Darksiders." The real issue to point out is very complicated designs can work fine, if there is a justification for them. Example, Isaac Clarke. He suit is very complicated, but it becomes that way after starting out much simplier. It gets more in depth as more protection is added to it to help him survive. The spacing of the plates not gives it an interesting design, but fits with logics as it would allow the kind of movement Isaac has in the game.

And I like the comment about how TF2 is the crash course in awesome design. Couldn't of said it better myself. In general I find this one of the best qualities in Valve, I can only think of one character they've ever designed poorly, L4D2's Rochelle. Everyone else in all their games has a depth of character in thier look, not to mention Valve is known for doing awesome things with facial animation to further give character. Cue the insidious grin on Spy's face while he's insulting someone for a domination or has just backstabbed someone, it shows you that he more than enjoys his work, he just loves killing people.

On the topic of people who probably missed the point, Yahtzee.
War is clearly designed to be miss shaped, impractical and monstrous. He is after supposed to be a representative of an ill conceived and horribly mangled concept. Further more the faces and claws are... well... oh fuck they probably are just meant to look cool. The long silver hair symbolizes how old he is (war after all is an old concept and the fact that the man that bears the hair is so young is a commentary on the old idea in young hands. The sword is meant to look impractical and huge, another commentary on weaponry as many weapons seem large,extravagant, pointless, and impractical. Really like many things I think Yahtzee just went into this one with the wrong mindset.

So, I think there is something slightly interesting here. War is meant to embody a part of us, as a whole (at least that is what was presented to me), the beastly, angry, warlike side. if you notice, his personality is focused, somewhat barbaric, yet highly skilled. His personality is reflected by the seemingly random nature of his weapons and armor.

War embodies a few things.
1. Fear, monster faces, and gruesome appearances.
2. Anger,
3. Brute Strength, Note the shear size of his left hand
4. Mental Strength, Note the symbol on his head, this portion of the skull is called the Mental I believe
5. Strength of Will, Note his unchanging facial expression, eyes that lack any form of amusement, constant looks of disdain. It shows a focus and intent.
6. Brutality, This one is found in almost every aspect of his character design. He is large (looks to be about 9+ feet tall), His armor is all crude yet effective.

Maybe I am the only person who sees these things. The thing is, I can see the reason why they had this level of character design. War is not Human, so he doesn't need human proportions. If you believe it to be a lack of ability in the design team to create proper human models, look at the Wretched (Undead people) and the initial cutscene which show humans with natural proportions. War is not human (I can't stress this enough), and it is clear that it wasn't an oversight, so much as a design choice to have him have differing proportions.

When you look at war, as if he really existed, what do you see? You see white hair, indicating age, but you don't see wrinkles or other signs of age, so perhaps he is simply mentally aged (wise) as is accepted in some cultures. You see brutal armor which all reflects anger, brutality, and fear. War is the aspect of War, he will embody that in his character design.

War is complex, so is War (You can read tat any way you want).

With that being said. I have no doubt that some parts of the armor and demeanor were added because "It just looked cool". But in the end, even that stems from some creative process. So, maybe he could have been designed better, but I believe he fits his place. He is supposed to stand out, he embodies war, it is his purpose. Why would he, in his brutal killing perfection, blend into the background?

Good article. I agree with Yahtzeeh's words in this article about ridiculous costumes on characters in a lot of games out there (fantasy being a big offender). Sometimes a minimalistic approach is a much better one. Or, if you have to be lavish and include all kinds of potentially awesome garb, at least have it make sense such as if your character wears armor; make it symmetrical.

ostro-whiskey:
Lol, I found this pretty amusing. It sounds like an attempt made by Yahtzee to try an justify his comments on design, but the fact that he tries to comment on the PRACTICALITY of a FANTASY character just makes him look stupid.

Fantasy requires a suspension of disbelief, does anyone ask why in Tolkiens Lord of the Rings world that in 3000 years people are still running around with medieval weaponry. The same goes with Warhammer 40k, and I suppose Darksiders.

For a man who got a bookdeal Yahtzee doesnt seem to be able to detract from a shallow aesthetic value, maybe he should look into it.

And so we find the first of many people who failed to read the article.

Go back and read the article properly and see just WHY Yahtzee said practicality of a fantasy character in a game is important. To compare, look at Kratos. Even his opponent Ares is wearing sensible armour, and he's a GOD for goodness' sake.

Nobody in Tolkein's world (except perhaps Sauron) looked like a scrapyard vomited up on them. Nobody in the Belgariad or the Mallorean is mentioned dressing like War here.
Nobody in the Inheritance Cycle has four car's worth of steel on their left hand alone.

There you have it, boy. A great fantasy series, a good fantasy series and a possibly not-so-good fantasy series, all with willing suspension of disbelief enabled.

poiumty:
No, i disagree. Much of my appreciation for Darksiders comes from War himself. It's an accurate portrayal of what a harbinger of the apocalypse would look like, and of all things i can envision him doing, i can't envision him getting up every morning. Or even sleeping for that matter.

Some things are meant to be over the top and ridiculous. They're better that way. The color scheme *is* a little off, i guess, but IT'S A GAME GODDAMNIT, I'LL TAKE MULTICOLORED RIDING HOODS OVER DARK-SHIT-BROWN ANY FUCKING DAY OF THE WEEK.

Whew. Bit of nerdrage there.

Except the two examples Yahtzee gave was one of a white and vivid red character, who swings around orange flamey chain-swords, and one of the cartoonishly colourful games available on the market. In fact the main concern about the character design was that he was ugly and hard to distinguish from the enemies. In which case, his colour scheme is retarded, and works just as well as "DARK-SHIT-BROWN" in a game.

OT: First of all, I think his outfit looks retarded. That being said, it also oozes violence. War isn't sophisticated, or intelligent, or logical. It's one of the messiest, most chaotic, most pointless phenomena in human history. Doesn't his character design just represent that perfectly? The sharp angles are clearly representative of blades (as is his big fuck-off blade), a tool that perfectly encapsulates 3000 years of global violence. The unbalanced armour pieces match up with the chaos and often lopsided nature of conflict. America v. Vietnam, Hernan Cortes v. Aztec Empire, Mycenae v. Troy. Not to mention the obvious association between the colour of the cloak and blood. There's a reason Kratos' tattoo is red, not blue. [/pretentious]

I suppose they sort of wanted to... oh i dont know, avoid every single barbarianesque character in existence? Remembering he is WAR. Can anyone imagine WAR wearing a skirt and sandles with an average sized sword? It doesn't exactly scream harbinger of the apocalypse does it? Anyone who ever thought of what WAR, of the four horsemen should look like, thought of a warhammer style big black armoured chaos knight and you goddamn know it. I suppose if they made a game about PLAGUE we would rather see him as some sort of leprecy ridden peasant in a loin cloth rather than the death like robed figure with green smoke pouring out of his skull head that we all imagine. People and their bandwagons, seriously. I find myself split between most of Yahtzee's opinions and I often wonder if he writes his articles and does his reviews to stir the pot. Although you can appreciate that he always has his reasons but this doesn't make him completely infallible. I'd be interested to know what he really thinks about anything. I'm beginning to think that if Yahtzee said "Everyone should go back to SNES! Games were AWESOME in those days!" they would.

It's worse than everyone pretending avatar was fantastic *sigh*

I actually think of all the late-stage Final Fantasy character designs, Auron actually looks pretty damn normal. Body armour. A big red coat. Big clodhopping boots. Sunglasses.

Actually it sounds retarded now I come to type it out, but then again he's going up against "dress made of belts. Fur coat and corset. Inhumanly low cleavage"

And also "Wakka". So yeah, he gets off easy.

Actually Balthier from Final Fantasy 12 is sensible enough- he looks like a Gay Pirate Han Solo. Which is exactly what he is.

Also yeah War looks like someone rolled a Katamari through a pile of discarded Warhammer bits.

All in all, it's a comic book game. The story is straight forward, the characters are over the top into the cheese, and the art design is all over the place. Maybe that's what they wanted though, or I'm sure it would have been scrapped. Someone had to agree with Mad, or it wouldn't have gone to the final product.

OtherSideofSky:
I tend to like intricately detailed designs (like some of H. R. Giger or Yoshitaka Amano's art)

You Sir have hit on something there that hasn't been brought up. HR Gigers work is based around themes, which dictate the over all mood and feel of the picture, his complex designs don't fail in presenting a notion to the viewer. From what I see on Yoshitakas work (and thankyou for bringing him to my attention, his shit is brilliant), his work is about creating areas of focus, which guide your eyes around the image by making some parts stand out over others, also his complex use of cloth design helps create a flow in the images which is really nice and easy to look at.

WAR on the other hand, was various ideas that may have looked awesome elsewhere, all thrown together with no rhyme or reason creating what one would call, a pile a' crap. Their is no theme or structure to his design... unless garbled mess is a theme and stacking every idea one on top of the other is structure. This design is bad even compared to standard over the top comic book characters.

Have to agree, TF2's design and implementation of character and personality is stellar work. They deserve the praise they get.

One thing I would like to touch on is the idea that war is chaos. War is actually one of the most orderly mass activities that human beings engage in. Wars are not just exceptionally large riots. Just because it is a messy activity does not mean it is not orderly.

It wouldn't have been so bad a design if they didn't make the armor bigger than War was. About 30 percent of the mass in that picture is body, the rest is metal armor. Does he really need armor that makes him look like a football player's wet dream?

BloodSquirrel:

[snip]

First off, War isn't human. He's War. The hood hides his face and makes his glowing eyes stand out. The overly elaborate designs on some of his armor and sword are part of that as well- they don't look like something you'd see on a human because War is not human. The long white air also gives a sense of age, helping to cast War as something ancient. Oh, and his huge left gauntlet is a weapon. That's pretty obvious to anybody who isn't being willfully stupid.

The character's torn cloak makes him look like he just came from a battle. Again, appropriate for War.

The character's color scheme uses a classic three color design: two main colors (red and grey) with goldish highlights. The grey fits because of the armor. Red has had a long association with war and bloodshed. The gold contrasts the two, but is a neutral enough color not to clash.

The character's broad design also fits the general concept of War. He's not a precision instrument; he's a large, powerful bruiser. Not only that, but he contrasts with the other characters in the game. When you have a bunch of angles and demons fighting, War can walk in and look distinctive. If he looked like every other character in the game, it would be a less impressive effect.

All in all, Yahtzee fails to raise any valid points about his design. In fact, I don't think Yahtzee really understand aesthetic design at all. He doesn't argue from any established or explained principles, he just tries to justify his argument with snark. The best example of this: One of the most accepted principles of character design is that the character should be distinctive by silhouette alone. So what does Yahtzee do? Complain about everything that makes his silhouette distinctive, of course.

Of course, it wouldn't be a Yahtzee article without massive doses of hypocrisy, so I'll just go easy and point out that the Heavy in TF2 has just as distorted bodily proportions as War does. In fact, he's worse.

Well for one I'm just going to point out that TF2 is far more inclined towards the cartoony side of things, and thus the Heavy's proportions are fairly accurate for what he's supposed to be- a cartoonish parody of a stereotypical Russian soldier. I'm not going to say that you're wrong about War's design being good, though I personally disagree, that's an issue of personal taste. I honestly understand where they were trying to go with War's design, but the took it a tad too far, in my opinion. They should have made the MAN match up with the armor, not be about a third of its size. Look at his head! Tell me that he'd be that physically impressive with that tiny head. Most of his bulk is just armor, which makes no sense, as he'd be trapped by his own armor from making full use of his strength. Armor is supposed to protect you, yes, but its not a tank. It doesn't move by itself. Maybe its some magic armor thats actually feather light, I don't know, I haven't played the game. But it just seems like an illogical design choice to me.

bjj hero:
Its pointless to talk about how practical the kit is as its fantasy. It depends on how far you can suspend disbelief.

With a design like that, my belief would require a bulldozer to be suspended.

No amount of fantasy will convince me that there's anything remotely cool about that armored apartment that the man seems to be living in.

But, as war is an ugly and stupid business, that suit might be fulfilling a ultimately symbolic purpose after all.

Macgyvercas:
I don't get the point of Twitter either.

Seems like a waste of time.

Anyhoo, great article. Still picking this game up though.

Hmm, me either. You are braver than I am wading into the waters of Twitter. I am not big on short comments, even though I think I will be leaving one here. ;)

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