Game news Kena Bridge of Spirits: the developers return to the creation of the heroine, images to support
It is in just a few days that Kena Bridge of Spirits will (finally) offer itself to PlayStation and PC players. The opportunity for developers to revisit the design of the famous protoganist.
As the name of the game suggests, Kena will be the main heroine of her adventure expected next week on PlayStation and PC. Until then, almost everyone knew it: it is precisely because this character is a central figure of the software but also of the marketing campaign that Ember Lab, the development studio behind the project, got down to a nice post on the PS Blog. This one is devoted to the creation of Kena, ideas that characterize her to the people who worked so hard to make her an endearing protagonist.
Kena, a heroine with solid expertise
As Hunter Schmidt, Animation Director at Ember Lab, points out, Kena wasn’t always like this: at the very beginning, artist Wanchana “Vic” Intrasombat envisioned… a tiny little girl. Although she does not look very old today, his original image was that of a young child who, over the months and the writing of the script, had to age to adapt to the mechanics of the game.
We realized that our heroine should be very competent, and that she would need to draw on substantial life experience to help the other characters as a spirit guide. Step by step, she got older and accumulated knowledge.
Its first 3D representation is due to Rodrigo Gonçalves, who subsequently worked with Carlos Ortega placeholder image, an artist whose portfolio immediately recalls the character design of Kena Bridge of Spirits.
A very special finish
Very concerned with creating a credible character, Embar Lab admits having spent a “Long process to add more detailed textures” while integrating techniques discovered in recent games, already released. This particularly concerns Kena’s hair and her clothes.
We finally found a compromise between solid geometry, which gives very clear shapes and captures light well, and alpha planes, that make it possible to distinguish each strand of hair by adding variations and flaws. We have paid just as much attention to clothing by creating different fabric textures and even wear marks.
As mentioned previously, Kena is a leader with experience. His worn outfit testifies to this and the ornaments on his staff represent “His respect for traditions and his dedication” to a great cause.
If we often compare Kena: Bridge of Spirits to a Pixar, it is not only for the quality of its 3D models or its artistic direction but also thanks to the quality of its animations. Hunter Schmidt insisted on precisely this point, which benefited of an important thoroughness.
Over the course of the game, the wind blowing through her hair has become an integral part of the atmosphere, further reinforcing the feeling that the village or the mountain where the player is located is inhabited by spirits. While we used a physics engine for the other characters in the game, every aspect of our main character was hand-animated.
This promises a very atmospheric experience. As a reminder, Kena will act as a spiritual guide and will go find a sacred temple in the mountains, standing up to demonic threats and helping the spirits trapped on the scene. A colorful journey that will be available on PC, PS4 and PS5 on September 21.
Source : PlayStation Blog