Deus Ex: Human Revolution - Interview @ The Critical Bit
William sends in this interview with Deus Ex: Human Revolution's Art Director Jonathan Jacques-Belletête on how art direction can have a tangible impact on gameplay:
One of my favorite parts of Deus Ex: Human Revolution was the abundance of visual storytelling. There were many locations which conveyed a lot of narrative information through objects. Adam Jensen’s apartment is a good example – You can find out a lot about that character by exploring his home. Tell us about how you design art assets that can tell a story.
A lot of it has to do with the original brief for a location. For Adam’s apartment, right from the get go I called it “The Adam Jensen Museum”. Right there, it gives a very clear idea to the team about the visual narrative purpose of the location. It needed to be a place where just by walking around, looking at things (even some pretty small details), you would learn a lot about Adam; about his life (past and present), his likes and dislikes, his current state of mind, and so on. We spent a tremendous amount of time working on, thinking about, and designing these scenes throughout the game. It’s what we call the “show, don’t tell” principle. Here again, my belief is that few game developers fully understand this concept. Video game visuals are so much more than texture size, shader tech, polycount, and dynamic lighting. But hey, that’s my theory.
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