Humans gain about 80% of the information through their sight out of all their sensory organs. Of course, visual information also plays an important role when playing games. In the game world where the black screen becomes bright, players select the character they want by looking at them with their eyes and see the character running around the wide field. Therefore, the art in the game is an important factor for the first impression of the game.
Lineage W meticulously embodies the atmosphere of medieval fantasy while inheriting Lineage's unique tone and manners. In order to inherit the essence of originality and express a new charm, what did NC focus on? Please enjoy the visual elements created through Lineage W.
It is not following the old ways but it is reinterpreting and inheriting
In the process of developing Lineage W, NC focused on properly inheriting the dark and serious atmosphere and originality of the original Lineage. Illustration with low saturation and monochromatic colors are one of the results of various efforts to contain a serious worldview. Of course, it wasn't exactly the same as the previous one. Though the design elements introduced by Lineage IP were brought, the main areas of the original Lineage such as Talking Island and Gludio, as well as signature characters such as Class, True Death Knight, and Kurtz has been reinterpreted.
3D quarter view becomes a turning point in expression.
Lineage W, developed with a 3D engine, has been upgraded in graphic expression. In particular, if players look at the background added by specific elements, they can recognize that elements once existed only for settings or parts having difficulty in expressing in a 2D environment were implemented more carefully. One of the artworks that showed the concept well in Lineage W is Swidden Village.
In the original Lineage, ‘Slash-and-burn farmer village’, where the vagrants live, was described similarly to a general village due to the technical limitations of the time. In Lineage W, the 3D engine was used to express the despair and madness of the vagrants by utilizing details such as abandoned buildings and debris, enhancing the realistic appearance. In addition, various elements such as moats and gates were added to the ‘Talking Island’ to secure the probability, where beginners’ adventures begin.
Investigate carefully and illustrate vividly
During the development of Lineage W, NC focused on two principles in terms of visuals so that players could easily immerse themselves in the game. The first is to ‘Examine the world view carefully’ to create a more realistic visual elements. Lineage is a fantasy world set in the Middle Ages in Europe. At that time, the ‘two-block’ hairstyle was really popular among men at the time, and this was reflected in ‘Depardieu’, the monarch character. In addition, visual elements such as costumes, architecture, and backgrounds reflect the phases of the times
The second is 'Let's express it vividly'. The 'class story' video at the beginning of the game makes players immerse themselves in the story because the pen touch is rough, lively, realistic, and expressive. Elves who are deceived by the devil and attack their comrades with a horrendous look, unknown monsters that threaten with numerous teeth, and corpses being crawled by maggots on appear vividly. It's a bit grotesque, but NC attempted to express it realistically and heavily to match the dark fantasy concept.
Coexist with the narrative
As the quest in Lineage W stated that the purpose of the quest is to deliver the story to the player, the story is an important element inseparable from the art. As the game progresses, players can enjoy artistic elements that effectively blend with the narrative. A typical example is the encounter with the Earth Dragon 'Antharas'. In the original Lineage, the giant dragon Antharas was only illustrated as 2-3 times larger than its real size of the character due to the limitations of the 2D graphic environment. However, in Lineage W, players can experience a dragon vividly as if they are actually facing a dragon. It was implemented that players discover Antharas' huge tail first, and they feel how big the dragon is as they enter the dungeon.
In addition, there is also story in the battle and the system. For example, considering the nature of the game that its difficulty increases the deeper players enter the dungeon, the visual elements are meticulously illustrated that they can feel a darker and more urgent atmosphere every time they go down to the floor. Moreover, when strengthening the weapon, the NPC infuses power into the weapon with modest gestures. A new narrative has been incorporated even in strengthening weapons, so NC have executed such work on subtle thing that can easily be overlooked
Class expands the spectrum of beauty
The class of Lineage W contains a different characteristic and 'various beauties' that exceeds the existing stereotyped image. Players can choose from four classes: Monarch, Knight, Mage, and Elf. There are 8 male and female characters each.
In order to vividly illustrate the characteristics of each class, the artists researched various references and exchanged numerous feedbacks within the team. Even with the same female character, the elf is designed to radiate ‘mystery’, the knight to express ‘small but strong’, and the wizard, who gained the most popularity as it was released on social channels, was designed to radiate an ‘alluring atmosphere’. As each class has different charms, the player will be at the crossroads of which character to choose.
Illustrated with dark fantasy, Lineage W provides a deep immersion feeling
The artists in charge of Lineage W under the motto of ‘actualizing imagination’ put a lot of effort into enhancing the visual perfection. Through the low saturation and dark atmosphere characteristic of the original Lineage, efforts were made to give the player the heavy yet serious impression of the original Lineage. While inheriting the tone and manners that Lineage IP has been pursuing, NC creates a more classic and realistic atmosphere of medieval fantasy so that players can be deeply immersed.
When you come across the charms of characters with different personality, detailed illustration that can be appreciated all over the world, and the narrative permeates the game system, you will soon fall into the dark fantasy world of Lineage W.