My problem with the new characters models/redesings

Discussion in 'Gotham City (General Gameplay)' started by JosEl, Apr 18, 2020.

  1. JosEl Well-Known Player

    So, since I don't know how to start talking about it I'm just gonna say it: I don't think the direction the game is going (in terms of art style and direction) is the right one. (Also I don't know if this is the riggt subforum or not, but here I go)
    I've been thinking about it for a couple months now, and with the BoP episode, I think I can say that the new direction the devs are going with the new npc models is the right one, for a couple of reasons I'll list below.
    Let me just make it clear that I know there is a whole process between the brainstorming step to the final product, and I believe you're doing the best you can. But the new npc/character models end up on the odd or out of place side of the spectrum when it comes to whether or not they fit in the dcuo visual universe.
    The game had a clear style back then, an almost 'from page to game' clearly comic book style, with likenesses to artists like Jim Lee (easily recognizable on the Batman model). And there is one specific thing about those designs in particular that always was clear, and that's the fact that it was a combination of all the different iterations of the character, like a "prime" version of them. Take the Flash desing for instance, it's the Flash, not 90's Flash, not 80's Flash, nor 2000's Flash, but rather a mix of all Flash-es.
    So, where does my issue with the new models is? First of all, the fact that the new models (take for instance Wonder Woman's, Shazam's and Black Canary's) respond to a very specific version of the character, and while that may work in a different unverse, it doesn't in the game's one, because it isn't a "prime" Winder Woman, it's 2018 Wonder Woman, whose appearance is based of the Snyder and Jenkins movies starring Gal Gadot, and then taken to the comics. The models are great, in fact they're amazing, but they don't fit this universe, where every character is a cimbination of their iterations. And is because they are this "prime" versions what makes them fit throughout the multiple storylines introduced over the years this wonderful game has been active.
    And the other "big" issue I have regairding the new models, is that they don't follow the art style the game has had for years. What I mean by this is that, right now, the models fell like they belong to different games (besides the versions they are closer to). Taking the new episode as an example, the only character that slightly looks like it belongs in the game is Harley Quinn's. The others, as good as they are, doesn't follow the same style, they look odd in the setting they're in. For instance, a clear one is Huntress' redesign, it looks much more like it could belong to a game like Fortnite rather that to DCUO, the same goes to the new Lois Lane model. And you also have the models of Black Cannary and Poison Ivy, or Wonder Woman, that looks much more like a character from a Sims game where you mixed and matched styles and make-up to get a cosplay of the characters. And then you have the model for Shazam, that doesn't look like the character at all.
    Now I'm not trying to sound rude or entitled, and I know the devs are putting in some of the best work they can to keep up with making content for the game. But this is something I wanted to, at least, let them know.
    • Like x 1
  2. Burning_Baron Loyal Player

    I feel like they are purposefully moving away from Jim Lee's artstyle since that partnership is pretty much done. They are slowly trying creating their own "universe" so to speak. I think letting their art team flex their muscles is a good thing. Once they get to update all the main models (if they get an opportunity to) I think things will be more cohesive. I also still think Batman got the short end of the stick with just a texture pass and color change. I was hoping they'd take some inspiration from his rebirth costume since it has a lot of
    Of elements from every Batman costume.
    • Like x 1
  3. willflynne 10000 Post Club

    There are a couple of things I keep in mind when they make changes to character models.

    First? The devs have said that this particular corner of the Multiverse (who knows WHAT Earth-number we are lol) isn't beholden to any one era (for lack of a better term) so they've got some freedom to use what they feel works best for the game. Which leads a bit into the second thing I keep in mind.

    And second is the detail that whatever change they may make to a character model has to be approved by DC before it comes into the game. So if DC doesn't want the devs using a particular look for a character, it likely won't appear in the game. Now, that doesn't mean we as players have to like every change or every character design used, but if the actual arbiters of what does and doesn't fit in the DC universe (or our corner of it) allow it in there isn't much we can really say about it not fitting or working.

    Personally I haven't really had much of an issue with the changes, and this is coming from someone who's always been a fan of Jim Lee's art style. The new character designs are matching up well with both the aesthetics of the game world and the new NPCs that get introduced. For instance, Wonder Woman's model looks to match up better now with the character models that came in with the Amazon Fury content. The only problems I've had with some changes end up being nitpicky kind of stuff (Superman doesn't look quite right to me for some reason and Catwoman's new look makes her look a little cross-eyed to me lol).

    Plus some of the details surprise and/or amaze me. The new Harley model in particular stands out to me in the regard. The textures on her jacket look great and as for details, her nail polish is kinda funky when you can get a good look at it. On her black gloved hand, red nail polish. On her red gloved hand, black nail polish. I really didn't expect to see that level of detail to keep with the alternating color scheme she uses (it's easiest to see in the Iceberg Lounge solo cutscenes).
    • Like x 2
  4. golddragon71 Dedicated Player

    I'm actually dreading the day they change Flash's suit so that it no longer has the Carmine Infantino design. (straight across Belt, boots with wings on them....etc)
    That being said, I've actually liked some of the redesigns.
    • Like x 3
  5. HurricaneErrl Dedicated Player

    It is funny you mention Harleys model as the only one that fits. I can't speak for everyone, but the majority of people we have talked to thought Harley was the worst of them. The new voice isnt as bad as before but the character model isnt very good imo. Yeah her accessories look better but her face just seems off for some reason. I personally haven't been a fan of a lot of the new models
    • Like x 2
  6. JosEl Well-Known Player

    I get what you say about her new redesign, but what I mean by saying that that's the one that fits the best, is that her face holds that sort of "neutral" style between the "too realistic" and the "too cartoony" spectrum. Instead, Black Canary, Supergirl and the new Wonder Woman (specially with her face) fall under the cartoony side of it. While Poison Ivy and Huntress fall under a different type of cartoony. Instead the Batman model, the Flash model or the Starfire model fall on the middle point that makes them feel like coming from a comic book, and not only from a specific comic book run, but for an entire history of the character (even though Starfire's model is pretty much looking like it's from the late 2000's) .
  7. JosEl Well-Known Player

    You see, that's the thing, since the game isn't attached to any specific era is the reason they're able to put in as many and diverse episodes as they do, (diverse in the means of lore, with elements from Darkseid War, Blackest Night, Throne of Atlantis and the Judas Contract) coexisting within the same universe. And is because of that fact, that having a "neutral"/"prime" version of the character, instead of having one from a specific era/run works. It's because you have those characters unattached to a specific version, but rather attached to all of them, that it works having the same character go against two different storylines within the same universe. It's because you have a neutral Batman that you can have him go against the Batman Who Laughs, and then going against Darkseid within the same universe, instead, if it where, say, Nolan's Batman, having him go against Doomsday wouldn't work. Or if you had Arrow's Green Arrow, in half of the content he's in would feel odd. The same goes for having The Dark Knight Returns' Batman, or long-haired 90's Superman, or Injustice's Black Cannary, and so on and on.
  8. Catastrophic Repercussion Dedicated Player

    I can get if you simply have an attachment to the older versions but this arguement... huh?
    Just look at all the revamped models, provided by Gotham Gazette:

    The old models are, for the most part, strongly associated to the 2000s/pre-Flashpoint era.
    Design elements significant to this era includes Wonder Woman's WW belt, Hawkgirl's Harness/Sports Bra combo, Gems and Thigh-high Boots for Starfire, Red dots on Cyborg's Shoulders and Belt, Supergirl's DCAU Crop top + Red skirt (with yellow accents everywhere, not including an image but yes they are introduced/exclusive to this period) etc.

    There are some designs that deviates from the original quite a bit, but the silhouette is still recognizable from this Modern Age.
    Examples include Lex's Warsuit and Circe's Purple Bodystocking:
    (Yes her purple look was never a bikini, so everyone, stop saying the redesign is less comic-book accurate.)

    Then there are Aquaman and Mera's look, which I can't even find if it was inspired by anything that came before, so their redesign is actually a more iconic interpretation than their previous ones.

    That's just factoring in those who did get the update, there are more examples that are similarly dated renditions.

    There is another thing about the new designs:
    Not 100% of the new models follow the default look from the latest books, they do deviate from it if they think it's not iconic enough.
    Zatanna's DCUO corset only has a minor role in Batman's Rebirth books, while Jericho and Poison Ivy's design are entirely new renditions based on their respective classic looks.

    I hope this is sufficient evidence that the old designs are about as Prime as the remodels.
    It's just they moved away from 2000s sensibilities to Rebirth aesthetics.
    There's not much loss as you think there is.
  9. dejanah New Player

    i dont like the new design at all, it was one of the reasons that made me stop playing.
    the old ones looked way more "heroic", the new WW looks like a generic warrior
    and it becomes very blatant when you see hippolyta next to the new WW.
    i really liked the old cartoon style, it fits the universe perfectly IMO.
  10. willflynne 10000 Post Club

    If you're talking about Aquaman's initial look in the game, it almost made it into the comics in the New 52 launch. In the first issue of Justice League under the New 52 banner, there are some sketches in the back of the book showing what some of the characters might have looked like, and Aquaman's outfit is pretty much the look he had at launch in this game.


    Whether it was going to be used as a link of sorts to the game or if Lee's work on the game carried over to his work on New 52 designs (the JL issue is dated October 2011 on the cover) is a bit of a mystery.
  11. Burning_Baron Loyal Player

    I happen to think this was such a strong Aquaman Design that Jim Lee considered using it as an offical in comic costume. If there was a model that I feel should have just got the texture pass it s this one. His armor is just so regal.
  12. JosEl Well-Known Player

    Since you mentioned that Gotham Gazzete's page, let's start with WW: in her old model, it was essentially 2000's WW, that's true, yet you fail to see that 2000's style is essentially WW's style since the 40's, with the slight modifications and details through the years. And not only that, but it also comes to the whole "feel" the model gives. The older model looked like Wonder Woman, and feels like Wonder Woman, it has the standing energy of WW, the new one however doesn't feel more like Wonder Woman than any female model of the game, it's suit does look like wonder woman, but it doesn't feel like it.
    Hawkgirl's (and Hawkman's for that matter) redisign is great, you wanna know why? Because it still feels like a prime Hawkgirl. The same goes to Catwoman, Circe, Luthor, Batman, Felix Faust, Batwoman, Krypto, Starfire, Mera and Ocean Master. And even tho some of this models have a clear inspiration from a clear era, they doesn't deviate from what the character feels, from the art style of the game, nor feel really that attached to a specific era.
    There are some models I have some issues with, that aren't that big, but that makes them feel odd (specially faces), like Cyborg's new facial features, Zatanna's new facial features, Jimmy Olsen's new facial features, or Aquaman's facial features.
    But some of the new desings have a problem showcasing the feel of the character, and the comicbook-esque feel of the game. Dr. Fate doesn't have that mystical feel anymore, Shazam staright up doesn't looks like Shazam, but rather someone cosplaying as him. Wonder Woman (mentioning her again for list purposes), Huntress (simply doesn't look like Huntress), Black Canary (the lookwould work more for a Harley Quinn kind of punky character rather than Black Canary. Face looks like it belongs to a different game) and Posion Ivy (straight-up looks like a Sims character cosplaying as Poison Ivy).
  13. Catastrophic Repercussion Dedicated Player

    Let us compare the 1940s and 2000s Wonder Woman then.

    Her tiara used to only point upwards, which has since included a downward pointy bit.
    Her bracelets used to be actual bracelets, by the 2000s they are lengthened to be more like Vambraces.
    Her original eagle motif is combined with the WW letters and pushed upwards,
    some artists even ditch the bird aspect entirely.
    Her belt used to be a relatively simplistic white band, subsequent versions have made it gold and bigger.
    Her bottom used to be culottes, it's been shortened over the years to resemble a one piece.
    Not pictured here are that modern incarnations have ditched the stilettos as well.

    So no, it's not just "essentially WW's style since the 40's", the shape has had some significant morphs over the years.
    The new model has downplayed the American flag aspect and introduced more Grecian armour elements
    (which may be the reason why you don't like it that much),
    but it does come from the same line of evolution.

    I don't have the energy to break down every single character,
    but here are some previous mainstream looks to compare to what you consider "essential, not from a specific era" ones:

    Silver Age Hawkgirl/Hawkwoman:
    The 2000s have ditched the free-flowing hair and tank top.
    I have no idea why she still keeps those giant earrings though.


    Catwoman over the years:
    Her comic looks rarely feature black, that is more commonly found on TV and movies.
    The zipper catsuit is also a staple only in recent years, not to mention the googles (which is already ditched by Joƫlle Jones).


    Bronze (?) Age Doctor Fate:
    Note that for most of Fate's history, he/she usually goes for a collar and amulet combo.
    The gorget, which I assume is the ingredient of why you think the old DCUO one looks mystical, is relatively new.


    Huntress' pre-Hush costume.
    The change to the belly-window outfit couldn't be more drastic.

    Not all costumes' evolutions are equal, some outfits change more and some less.
    Again, there is nothing wrong if you like the older version better. That is your personal taste.
    There simply is nothing "essential" or "prime" to the designs, era specificity always exists.

    Hmm... I think this sketch looks miles better than how it's realised in-game. That model missed the mark for me.

    Either way that's one more piece of evidence of how the OG DCUO style is primarily influenced by the 2000s (though this image is more 2010s)
  14. JosEl Well-Known Player

    If you compare a 1940's WW suit and a 2000's one, of course you're gonna see differences, bt you'll also see a bunch of similarities as well.
    About the greek-esque armor, my thing about the new model isn't really about the armor, but rather the look&feel of the model as a whole. (Although when you compare the armor to other themiscyran armors it does look a bit out of place.)

    Again, if you compare her look from the silver age to something coming out right now, you'll see a bunch of similarities, in the mask, the color scheme etc.

    If mistaken I am not, ever since silver (maybe even bronze) age, she had a catsuit on. The colors may change, wether or not it had googles, or something in the lines of a utility belt may have changed, but the catsuit is a constant.

    It's not neccesarily the gorget, but the fact that the new model essentially looks like a flexsuit with some generic lines to break the even-ness of it. The only thing in the new one that says "Dr. Fate" is the helmet, and even that doesn't rwally looks mythical. It looks closer to being a modern armor helmet rather than the mythical helmet of Nabu

    While it is true that not all costumes are developed the same way, and that there is some era-specific elements, it's also true that there are elements that are part of the identity of a character, and that they need to be there, in order for the character to be that character.

    Again, thee new models look really cool (for the most part), but that doesn't mean they'll fit in this game's style
  15. Catastrophic Repercussion Dedicated Player

    And those similarities exist in the new model as well.
    Gold, red and blue colour scheme. Tiara and a red star. Bustier top with short bottoms. Bracelets/ers. Stripes on boots.

    The 2000s already has a more line-heavy approach than 1940s' shape oriented style, the newest costume just pushed the former's aspect even further.

    It's fine if it's not to your liking, but the costume has captured what's iconic about her look.

    If you compare to other Grecian looks in the game of course they don't look like from the same designer.
    That's a 2000s sensibilities issue.
    ...Hawkgirl's new design has far less similarities to her previous looks, no more or less than WW's is to her own.

    She used to have free-flowing hair to go along with the helmet. That is not present in her modern incarnations.
    The red that pervaded to her colour scheme is now vastly reduced for more green.
    She went from showing her boobs to showing her abs.
    I don't even know why you think the Rebirth look is acceptable to you, the golden feathers introduced are drastic changes to whatever she had before, and that distance her from Hawkman even further.

    Technically the catsuit has appeared in the comic books since the silver age... because of the TV show.
    The reason that looks is iconic is that all the major mass-media versions sports the catsuit.

    It has gain prominence since Batman: Year One, but no one considers the comic catsuits before that remotely distinct.
    Darwyn Cooke's design is when an iconic version of the look finally sticks, and it's inspired by Emma Peel, not her previous designs.
    ...His old version also wears the flex suit.
    If you don't like the 2010-ness of the lines, that's fine, but it's not like a wild departure from previous incarnations.

    There is difference between the two helmets:
    The eyes widened a bit, the sharpness scaled back a bit and the texture is updated.
    For the most part, it's just different design quirks, there is nothing structurally different from others.
    I don't know how you even come to the conclusion of it being a significant downgrade.

    P.S. The look is also not Rebirth-new, it has been worn by Kent V Nelson, though with fewer lines and no yellow boots.
    Funny you skipped my Huntress comparison...oh there are lots more examples like hers. I hope I don't have to come to that.

    There aren't just "some" era-specific elements, though not applicable to every single case, a lot of the initial DCUO designs are dated to the 2000s, rarely an amalgamation of their costume history.
    You may prefer one to the other, but the designs that you find has "lost their essence"... the iconic elements are still mostly there.
    I also find your standard on how much is considered "straying too far from the original's look and feel" inconsistent, sometimes you nitpick to the point I need to use a magnifying glass to see it for myself, sometimes even the broad strokes between versions are different yet you're fine with it.

    Some reminder from previous posts before my final statement:
    1. Every new design needs approval from DC's license department.
    If they deem the design appropriate to represent the character, it is, especially from a brand perspective.
    2. The original DCUO style is basically the Jim Lee style, which the current designs are deviating from.
    You may prefer the older aesthetic, but it is not THE comic book style in an objective sense. Also, the change is approved by DC.
    3. Not everything in this game has been updated to match modern sensibilities.
    The unevenness of visuals will lessen over time once the dev team get to revamp more areas of the game.
    4. Almost every piece of the new design is from the comics.
    It doesn't mean you have to love them, but the costumes are fitted for the mainstream interpretation of the character.

    I'm not even a fan of the new looks, I simply find your feelings toward the designs not based in reality.
    In the comic book history sense anyway.
  16. Brit Loyal Player

    The only part that bothers me is the sizing on many of the new models. I am using the medium/average build for a female character, and I tower a foot taller than all of the Birds of Prey in the new expansion area. If I'm supposed to be a nice average 5'6ish, then are they really like less than five feet tall? Or did I just randomly grow and now I'm 7 foot tall?
  17. TheLorax 10000 Post Club

    Small = below/average height. Medium = taller than average. Tall = circus sideshow act.
  18. Brit Loyal Player

    When I walk up to the NPCs in the Watchtower though, we are of comparable height. When I fight these NPCs in their combat models, we are of comparable height. But the quest-giver/vendor options of them are at about 70% of their own height elsewhere in the game. It is very inconsistent usage of the same models.

    I am definitely not 1 foot taller than the raid boss versions of Black Canary and Harley Quinn.
  19. Fwames Well-Known Player

    B.O.P. Model designs are such a turn-off.

    Ivy looks like Peter Pan with those leggings
    Harley looks more like a play on "*****-ly queen" than harlequins
    The Huntress looks like she's going to an underground dance-off
    Black Canary..... Thank god she still looks bland, boring and uninspired as usual.

    I feel a certain disconnect between their "comicbook" characters are their design and seriously.... *sigh* they are fighting superpowered individuals that are capable of destroying the world while wearing short shorts, a leather jacker and a baseball bat. That is some serious empowerment.
  20. willflynne 10000 Post Club

    It's tough to tell sometimes, as there are areas where my characters are as tall as iconics but shorter in other spots. There are spots where it seems like our characters and iconic characters aren't standing on the same level ground (one floating slightly above the surface, others sunken slightly into it) so maybe that's what's happening.