Fantasy Art Styles

Jon Schindehette has an interesting post over at the WotC site about art style, specifically when it comes to armor. He ends with the following conclusion:

Armor should look appropriate to the culture, environment, materials available, and technology, first and foremost. If the armor doesn’t pass that test, then it doesn’t matter whether it is being worn by a man or a woman.

I agree with his sentiments, but more importantly, I like his visual guide to the three general art styles when it comes to fantasy characters and their armor:

Once you have this guide, it’s really a piece of cake to figure out that Blizzard are fond of fantastic realism. Even Diablo 3, which previously sported a dark, gothic style, has now been transformed into another WoW when it comes to over-the-top fantastic realism with cartoony colors.

For Riftforge, we have chosen the third style. It requires a lot more effort on the part of the artist but when done right looks so true that Renaissance painters turn green with envy.

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