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Offline VladOfWallachia

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Re: Carpathian Night - Demo now available!
« Reply #105 on: September 04, 2019, 02:40:47 PM »
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Those are some good points, we will keep them in mind as development continues.

The challenge for us then will be to get the contrast right between the human Dracula at the beginning of the story, and what he becomes, the lord of the vampires. As a human, he held a close relationship with the two heroes, Dorin and Irina, so he does need to be somewhat relatable as a normal person. But I will remember to make the transition more stark and more clear for when Dracula turns to his iconic vampire self.

Offline X

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Re: Carpathian Night - Demo now available!
« Reply #106 on: September 04, 2019, 07:20:12 PM »
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Search your thoughts, try to understand why you dont think it meshes well, then let me know. A lot of thought has gone into our design of Dracula, but there may be something we are not seeing or considering. Or maybe it will come together more once you see him in the game.

Got my thoughts together since this morning. Hopefully it'll clear up what I mean.

I think his vampire look doesn't mesh well as he's just a bit too pretty-looking. The real Dracula wasn't very attractive; that luxury goes to his brother; Radu the Handsome. I know that vampires are supposed to have that ethereal beauty-thing (although that was actually a Victorian era invention for their vampires), but for Dracula I feel it is a bit too much. Also his hair is way too curly rather then the natural wavy hair we see depicted on his infamous portrait. The look makes him more western European then Eastern European (like he came out of Spain or something). Granted this is a game and not directly following real life so in the end it's not up to me. I just feel that Dracula -both human and vampire- needs to have that imposing look to them and that's not exactly something that can be done with a pretty face.
« Last Edit: September 04, 2019, 07:22:29 PM by X »
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Offline VladOfWallachia

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Re: Carpathian Night - Demo now available!
« Reply #107 on: September 05, 2019, 08:30:15 AM »
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Those are all good points, and there is still much work left to do on the game so that commentary will definitely help shape our version of Dracula.

That being said, I don't completely agree with the notion that pretty faces are not a good fit for intimidating villains. I feel like whats on the inside is what really determines the effectiveness of a villain. For example, characters like Joffrey Baratheon, Ramsay Bolton, and Cersei Lannister are some of the most vile and frightening villains I've seen in recent memory, and none of that evil is portrayed through their outward appearance. Another example I'm personally a fan of is Freiza from Dragon Ball Z. He very convincingly carries himself as the most powerful and evil being in the universe (at that time in the canon anyways) but his outward appearance is that of a small, androgynous alien. I like how Toriyama often reverses the outward appearance with the actual strength of the character, Nappa and Vegeta being another example of this.

But moving towards a more specific example, I'm highly influence by several Dracula movies, including some of the less popular ones. One that has influenced our own Dracula is the Frank Langella version. Sexuality played a much bigger role in this version, and that actually made Dracula a more convincing villain in my opinion. In this film, we see Dracula employ centuries worth of wisdom as a weapon, and he is able to easily seduce and manipulate others, all while having a "pretty" outward appearance. In fact, that attractive outward appearance just makes it easier for him to get what he wants, including prey. Compare this to a more popular version of Dracula, like Bela Lugosi. In that film, there is a scene where Dracula simply walks up to a random woman on the street and almost immediately starts attacking her. Although Bela is more outwardly villainous, his actions often aren't as convincing and thus less intimidating to me overall.

I could talk about all the other influences later, but another big factor as to why our Dracula is young and attractive is because again, he will be a playable character, the hero of his own game (Carpathain Night Prologue/2) so we need to make him appear more relatable, at least during his pre-lord of the vampires days. A big part of the reason we want a young Dracula and his origin story is also simply because we wanted our Dracula to be different from the one in Castlevania. That version varies a lot too, but he often looks like the ancient being we are all more familiar with. Carpathian Night is a tribute game, but we want to breath life into the Classicvania genre with our own interpretation of the characters, and that includes how to portray Dracula.

But don't take the long response as a rebuttal to your commentary, it has a lot of weight because the examples I gave are all from works that have much more room for character development than a video game, so I will use your critique to ensure the vampire lord version of our Dracula is sufficiently different and outwardly intimidating compared to his playable form. That being said, the story is definitely taking place during Dracula's youth, so his more traditional outward appearance will have to wait until future games, and hopefully this game series will become successful enough to make that a reality one day.

Edit:
Another point about Dracula not looking sufficiently eastern-european. That's also a good point, and you are actually on target. Another big influence to me personally is Hideo Kojima. One thing that designer has always done is base the outward appearance of his characters on a movie actor. We are doing something similar for many of the characters in Carpathian Night, including Dracula... however, the person we picked is not eastern-european so you hit the mark on that one. I'll keep that commentary in mind and forward it to our character artist. Thanks. 
« Last Edit: September 05, 2019, 08:36:39 AM by VladOfWallachia »

Offline X

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Re: Carpathian Night - Demo now available!
« Reply #108 on: September 05, 2019, 09:23:29 AM »
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But don't take the long response as a rebuttal to your commentary

No worries there dude. The conversation's been professional which is how I like 'em.

I just checked out the Frank Langella version of Dracula via screen shots. The actor isn't all that handsome either. I think in the end it'll be the dark magics of Dracula's Magnetism/hypnotism that'll draw in victims rather then his straight-up looks. I also think that with regards to art (the villains you've mentioned though looking pretty) are more defined by their words and their actions. I have seen my fair share of pretty boys in anime but their looks just don't do the villainy and due justice. Instead it is all succeeded by their personality and actions. That's not to say one can never achieve a successful look for their villains. But it is a rare thing to come by/create. I wish you luck  ;)
« Last Edit: September 05, 2019, 09:35:13 AM by X »
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Offline VladOfWallachia

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Re: Carpathian Night - Demo now available!
« Reply #109 on: October 09, 2019, 02:11:06 PM »
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Update:



I am feeling confident that the new demo will be ready for release by Halloween week. This demo will also be free and will contain all new content, including a complete graphical overhaul.

We will also be announcing an Early Access build soon, scheduled to launch early 2020, which will have much more content than either demo.

I'm excited to show what we have been working on very soon, so stay tuned!

« Last Edit: October 09, 2019, 04:22:16 PM by VladOfWallachia »

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