IronStylus on Quinns First Iteration; IronStylus, Davin, and RiotMontag on Quinn

IronStylus on Quinns First Iteration

I appreciate the positive vibes =)

Honestly, I don't mind the critique. It's my job to create, produce, release, observe reaction, take feedback, iterate, repeat. This is all helpful despite it being charged. 

There are some key points I do think are valid. I personally want to play with how my form language and design are expressed in my art, that's something artists constantly struggle with. Working on relaunches are really helping that. I have to abide by some set visual hooks, but it's not as repetitive as I sometimes get when I do things from scratch. I see some issues with "cobbled together" but that's a goal we had. No streamlining unless stylistically intended. 

One thing I try to keep in mind is that this character was started at the end of May last year. She went through a TON of changes from first iteration to final. I've grown in my work since then. We also made some pretty significant last-minute changes to solve some game silhouette issues. She started off very much in the line of what people are "expecting". When I see the feedback of what people think they were going to see, versus what they are seeing now, I see exactly what they were expecting in my first designs. More rustic, more traditional fantasy, but honestly very, very vanilla. I'll go through that dev process eventually, not right now though.

She evolved a lot but in a direction that encompasses a lot of new style tenants we're trying to incorporate with style in general. Story telling elements that communicate a history, like her gauntlet, and her holster (which you can't see on the front) along with more unconventional silhouette management that breaks out of traditional forms. Right now in the front-on view, the really communication that she has is not apparent because it's not in-game. This is not reflective of what you see in game. This is for modelers to construct an asset from. 

We'll see. It's been quite a night. I've bee surprised pleasantly in places and dissapointed with a lot of the negativity in others. What I think this is a larger side effect of what "League fantasy" is versus "traditional fantasy". Quinn is not traditional fantasy. She has elements of sci-fi, modern elements, even aspects riffed off of our UI. This is all an experiment in how we can create a visual style that's unique even if it is a change.

Change challenges convention, it does happen to disrupt expectations. I don't think that's a bad thing though. I think it's unnecessary to fundamentally challenge the established norms.


IronStylus, Davin, and RiotMontag on Quinn

Some quick context:

Quinn used to be a guy, then I turned her into a woman. That woman is a ranger, she's prepared for a fight, she's wearing thicker armor but not plate aside from key places where she would have to interact with an enemy's face. 

Quinn was not designed to be in a skin-tight outfit. That was tried, and look, again, like a woman with a cape, in a skin tight outfit, which had been worked to death by Zyra, Syndra, Elise, and Diana. She does not care about looking feminine, she cares about utility. Baggy fatigues which have hardened pockets, knee pads to dig into the ground to take a shot, no exposed flesh to take a graze. 

A functional Demacian helmet which adds sleekness is a design choice. It's Valkyrie, it's a motif, and it's a visual landmark. She has a gauntlet reminiscent of a falconer's glove which is armored because Valor has armor on his talons, to again, interact with an enemy's face. He can do damage to even thick leather. 

Her hood is collapsed, she has essentially a themed parka with a bird motif, Functional but themed. 

She has what equates to kevlar, thickened material able to resist a blade. She has Demacian signifiers all over her, and bird motifs worked in. She is functional but fantasy. 

Regarding femininity, I was called out long ago when Sejuani released for making the reasoning that Sejuani might wear less clothing so that "you can tell she's female." That is an invalid argument and a sad excuse to design a particular way. A ranger, an elite, doesn't care whether you can tell they are a female or a male. They are interested in getting the job done, and having the gear to do so. We gave Quinn that gear and did not embrace the traditional route of the tight-clothed standard fantasy ranger. She's a new ranger for a new time. She hits the Demacian notes but plays off of them. That is the rational behind similar armor themes to Garen and Jarvan. That's how we establish she's in the military proper, but not standard in uniform. 

For reference, take a look ad Deunan Knute from Appleseed. She has no boob or breastplates. She is completely covered with a half-helm. She has short hair. She is a bit more masculine, that's the goal. She is not a waif, but she is agile. She has small breasts, a tighter frame, but is fairly androgynous. That's what we wanted to portray, and I feel we hit that.

Honestly, I feel I owe no excuses. You know my history, you know my goals. I design the women in armor. I do not design the over-sexualized, the seductress, or the siren. Different artists gravitate towards different styles and themes. When this champion came along, I opted to work on it because I felt I could bring a different take. Initially, she did start out as a traditional fantasy ranger, and actually was melee at the time. However, that was not the route we wanted to take. That was standard, it was conventional, and it was boring. I drove away from it and made something rugged in the new direction we're trying to take our style. Fantasy, but not traditional fantasy.

This is my take. If you don't like it that's perfectly fine. I, like all artists, design with particular design and form language as my signature. You might have noticed Zyra, Syndra and Elise were designed by the same artist. Sexy bodies, integrated clothing/biology, dark females. Same with artist for Nautilus, Ziggs and Lulu. Friendly shapes, opposing colors, offbeat characters. Just like game designers have similar flavor to their champions across the board artists have similar common expressions. 

If you want a traditional archer, with a traditional fantasy get-up, with a traditional build, and a traditional design where female form expression trumps practically fighting the fight, I am not your guy, and I'm glad to admit that. That's my strength, that why I work on what I work on.

I do not abide by the established or the expected, neither does Riot on the whole. It is not our job to abide, it's our job to challenge the convention and question traditional execution.

Thanks for the feedback. Thanks for understanding where we're coming from. This isn't just me. This is part of something larger. Pendulums will swing, you'll get your stripped down heroes. Quinn is not one of them and we're proud of that.

Here we have Ashe.
Attachment 613862

Now here is what, according to the Lore, is what Quinn should look like. Note all the Gear she is carrying. While being fully clothed.
Attachment 613863

Technical note. Those characters would read nearly identical in our game with the exception of the cape and internal detail.

For an RTS such as LoL those would equate to two skins for the same character. 

One thing to consider is how much we have to bust up silhouettes, internal details, and bodies in general to make things look remotely unique in game. There will be overlaps, quite often, but we treat those overlaps with context such as animation, VFX, VO, etc. 

I tried a more standard form with Quinn. She started out with a jumpsuit. She ended up looking like Vayne and yet another woman with skin-tight clothing. That wasn't impactful, it was boring, and it was standard. 

That silhouette you're giving an example of is the essentially the same sillouette if we were to build those and put them at a top-down 3 quarters view.

A female champion who doesn't necessarily broadcast her gender to everyone within sight without doubt. 
An interesting note: In early concept and lab tests on the champion, a decent number of people thought she was male!

An interesting note: In early concept and lab tests on the champion, a decent number of people thought she was male!
And this was the intended goal as you might remember =)

Directly incorporating the feedback that we didn't need a female to look overtly feminine to.. be.. ya know.. a female.

In other words, we were ok with that.

...you get Ashe.

On a more serious note, I initially thought she was male too, until I actually took more than five seconds to look at the picture. At that point it became clear she was either an understated 'normal' looking female or even more of a girly-man than Ezreal. Since the latter was unlikely, concluding she was female wasn't too hard.

Yep. She's a ranger first. Not a woman first. 

Place woman in traditional male creative space and there you go.

And this was the intended goal as you might remember =)

Directly incorporating the feedback that we didn't need a female to look overtly feminine to.. be.. ya know.. a female.

In other words, we were ok with that.

I fondly remember your excitement when you saw those data! 

Does she looks like a ranger to you?
I'll tell you what a League of Legends falcon ranger looks like.

It looks like Quinn.

I do not abide by the established or the expected, neither does Riot on the whole. It is not our job to abide, it's our job to challenge the convention and question traditional execution.
I want to reiterate this, because it's super important. This is how we roll. We experiment, we try things out. We do things that seems crazy to see how they'll turn out. It's chaotic, it's creative, and it's bound to upset somebody. But it's who we are.

I hope you're along for the ride, but be prepared to feel a bump every now and then.

 

 

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Comments

  • #31 m1spl4ced

    I just don't get why they pick such a feminine beautiful voice to go with such a masculine character.

  • #32 aTomic

    Because she's a woman?

  • #33 BuzzsawMF

    I would have to agree with M1 here. I would expect that voice on Lux not a soldier. 

  • #34 Wiltsee

    yeah because all tough girls MUST HAVE gruff voices and all girly girls MUST HAVE high-pitched squeals and because voices TOTALLY define personality traits and TOTALLY ISN'T a subjective thing that can be interpreted by someone as anything they wanted to.

  • #35 aTomic

    Women don't have to become men in order to be soldiers.

  • #36 BuzzsawMF

    I agree but it just sounds really perky, especially since they pushed the "Demacia needs soldiers" thing. It isnt a huge deal I just didnt expect the voice. Take Poppy for instance. If you replaced Poppy's voice with Tristana, thematically it would be weird. Now the voice isnt going to define a champion it was just and observation. 

     

    Another example, Take the Red Sonya from Conan the Barbarian and replace her voice with Bubbles from the power puff girls. It just doesnt really fit. 

  • #37 m1spl4ced

    Such voice does not fit her Theme. Yes, buffy soldier girls with masculine characteristics DO usually have more masculine voices.Even if it weren't true in reality,it just fits how people have it on their mind.

    Like, making champions bigger (in dimensions) usually equals harder to kill. In reality it's not necessarily true, but it's true in the game and Riot supports it.

  • #38 aTomic

    It does if that's the character. You find it jarring because you have these tropes set up in your head about how men and women should be. Real life doesn't always fit that. Why should fantasy?

  • #39 BuzzsawMF

    I feel like this is kinda turning into a "you should be politically correct" thing. 

  • #40 Wiltsee

    it's not. sometimes people make criticisms about things based solely on their personal/subjective experiences and influences. this isn't really an accurate way to look at things, especially creatively.

    the idea that a girl's voice is too perky to be a soldier is one of them. we're not accusing you guys of being politically incorrect as much as we're saying you guys are looking at this with a lot of tunnel vision.

  • #41 BuzzsawMF

    Imagine Ripley from Alien with the voice of Taylor Swift. It's just thematically weird.

  • #42 Wiltsee

    except i never thought of ripley or taylor swift when i heard it. do you see what i mean about inaccuracy and tunnel vision.

  • #43 aTomic

    It's funny actually that you bring up Ripley since her character was never intended to be seen as a tough action hero. She's a ship's pilot, totally ordinary person in the first Alien. Her gruff demeanour is the result of professionalism, not badassery.

    Besides, Ripley and Taylor Swift is a really bad comparison. Quinn is a young woman, obviously skilled and highly confident. in that respect, her VA is a perfect fit. You might as well say that Lux's joke, in which she explains the science of a double rainbow, is thematically inappropriate because she's not wearing a lab coat.

  • #29 JocularThePeasant

    If Swain and Vayne had a baby...

    Edit: I guess I wasn't the first to notice this.

    Last edited by JocularThePeasant: 2/15/2013 5:10:29 PM
  • #25 Cerbereth

    Why did the riot artists just spend pages trying to justify themselves? You made a champion let us play with it and we will tell you what we think of it. You don't need to spend pages justifying whether she should have worn a bikini or full plate. Is Quinn so bad that they are apologizing to us in advance or are the feminists holding a gun to IronStylus head as he writes?

    Why is there this odd aura of fear hanging over their writing?

    Last edited by Cerbereth: 2/14/2013 5:48:18 PM
  • #15 quadchi

    Didn't Riot have a goal to make new champions with appearances so you could get the idea who are they, what is their business in league? Well, from first glance I would say Quinn is a soldier, not a ranger

    Last edited by quadchi: 2/14/2013 10:53:51 AM
  • #13 MarcoFoxRoberto

    I dislike this champion art design. But then again, IronStylus said it right: she doesen't need to appeal to everyone. I'm sure a lot of people like her, so good for them.

    On a diferent note, I'm getting real tired of "humans" in the league. Specifically (but not only) women. The art designers have a boner for pretty girls, and instead of exploring others types of champions, they just try to make the new girls"strong and independent". It's been done several times over. Leona, Diana, Elise, Vi, Taric.

    We get it, they don't need to be half naked. They are still just one more though. And this one specially is just another Ashe (art wise). I'm sure it will have some cool mechanic, but couldn't this be a male, for example? Or maybe even a yordle. Or create a new species. Something "unique". I know they have tried it (I read it), but does it always have to come down to putting a set of tits on it and call it a day?

    I just think she looks meh overall. Which is not to say that she's not pretty. Just "another one".

    Keep in mind that I'm just talking art/visual design only, and not mechanically. I really love Vi's mechanics, for example, even though her voices annoy the shit outta me.

    Just my two cents. 

  • #14 BuzzsawMF

    I think her design and concept are really great but I do agree. I would have loved to see her be a different race. A ranger/falconeer yordle would have been amazing. 

     

    As far as having different races overall though I think Riot does a pretty good job. With Rengar/Kha'zix/Elise they have a pretty good range of different creatures to play. 

  • #18 Wiltsee

    you know we're getting a yordle jungler right. maybe we shouldn't rest our opinions of riot's champion creativity on the second champion of the year.

    Last edited by Wiltsee: 2/14/2013 12:32:56 PM
  • #20 BuzzsawMF

    I was unaware of this knowledge! Do you have the link with the info?

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