Choosing the low poly art style.
Why choose a low poly art style for a game? Today, we wanted to give you insights as to why and how we choose a specific art style when developing a game! Happy reading!
What is our Art Direction?
Where does it come from?
Blooming Business: Casino is a tycoon game that takes place in a vintage and cozy ’50-’60s casino. We are using the mid-century design look that we can see today in cartoons such as the rework of the Power Puff Girls :
Artist/ Source: Powerpuff Girls Special: Dance Pantsed by Kevin Dart
Or 50s-60’s cartoons :Artist/ Source: 1959 cartoon for nuclear prevention
It’s a very distinguishable and clear style that has a joyful and quirky look! It fits the tone we wanted to put in the game.
What is low poly?
In 3D we use the construction of Polygon to represent shapes: the more polygons, the more details in the shape of the object! In the early stage of video games and for low-end devices, the polygon count should remain quite low as they are calculated by limited technology. During that time, artists needed to play with those constraints to produce a coherent art style.
Today PCs are mostly capable of handling a large number of polygons. However, the low-poly art style has been continuously used to set vintage or charming looks within a reduced production budget as it’s quicker to produce.
How do we fit this style?
As we don’t have a low polygon count restriction (even if we have to keep an eye on it as the Casino can be quite full!), we used a Low-Poly style to set strong shapes on the silhouette of the objects. Everything is a bit quirky, a bit “not straight” which is enhanced by the Low Poly style. It looks like someone just drew the silhouette with a few strokes.
We also wanted the model and texture to be readable from far as well as from close so the texture shouldn’t be too noisy. The “stroke” pattern that we use everywhere puts a “by hand” feeling as well and creates homogeneity in the representations.
Why did we choose this art style?
What are the advantages, drawbacks? What decisions did we make?
So, why choose a low poly art style for a game? We’re a small team at HomoLudens. When the art direction was set, we already had in mind how to produce it! By using a low-poly style and a simplified texture workflow, we aim to produce more content for the player that is focused on a style that matches the tone of the game!
Luckily, in the 50s and 60’s the “mid-century design” style is already geometrical with strong shapes which fits the geometric aspect of the low-poly art style. We think it gives a more vintage look and a more light-hearted tone so everyone can spend time in a cozy and pleasant place!
Get early access to the game by joining Discord and chat with the dev team!
See you soon!