1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

A problem with 2d leader backgrounds

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by Krajzen, Jun 18, 2016.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Krajzen

    Krajzen Deity

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2013
    Messages:
    2,908
    Location:
    Poland
    I had no problem with 2d leader backgrounds before I realized this will negatively impact not the quality of backgrounds themselves but quality and diversity of leaders too.

    Let me explain, in civ5 leaders are not merely standing in front of some background (like theodore and cleopatra do), they are interacting with them.
    *Harald leaning from the boat
    *Alex and Genghis riding on horses across grass
    *Pedro sitting behind desk in his bureau
    *Numerous rulers majestically sitting on thrones (Darius, Nebuch, Harun, Ramesses, Pacachuti, Sejong, Elisabeth, Augustus)
    *Theodora lying on couch nonchalantly
    *Napoleon and his horse
    *Shaka and Boudicca throwing their weapons on the ground once defeated
    *Washington interacting with globe
    *Rammy walking through his garden
    *Numerous leaders gazing upon landscape of their backgrounds - Maria Theresa embracing mountains, Gajah Mada gazing upon tenoles in the jungle, Kamehameha and ocean...

    All such things are impossible now (unless some leader accessories are 3d and others not - weird as hell). Leaders may be very well animated and cool but they all are going to be just standing in front of painted background, looking at nothing but you.

    That's unpleasant hit to my immersion and leader diversity, and don't use the argument "in civ4 leaders were just portraits", I got used to civ5 standards for years. No painted background can imitate the badassery of Askia standing with a long sword in front of the animated burning city.

    Your thoughts?
     
  2. TheMarshmallowBear

    TheMarshmallowBear Benelovent Chieftain of the BearKingdom

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2006
    Messages:
    7,596
    Location:
    Inside an Ikanda.
    You said yourself.

    "You got used to civ5 standards for years"

    That's your excuse.

    Sure, they look nice, but that's all they offer. Immersion in a game like Strategy, well, It's a complicated topic tbh.

    However, I see no reason for them to blow so much budget on those advanced backgrounds only for the player to EVENTUALLY get tired of it after the first few meetings, and end up skipping the dialog completely.

    I mean, some people enjoy sure.

    But personally I prefer they don't blow their budget on look if it means they can spend that budget on makign the game more stable and more balanced.
     
  3. darko82

    darko82 Emperor

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2005
    Messages:
    1,304
    Location:
    Poland
    We have seen two backgrounds so far. And for me, they are very dark, TOO dark for sure. But that's ok if only those two are so dark.
     
  4. SemperFi2382

    SemperFi2382 Mitten Marauder

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2003
    Messages:
    321
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Michigan, USA
    Immersion wise, I think a leader would be more formal so talking to me from many of those scenes comes across as awkward. When I see world leaders talking in the media, that kind of reinforces that vision. Yes, many times it might be over the phone or via diplomats, but you get what I mean.

    On the other hand, there was the variety but that novelty wore off quickly. At least now, the focus seems to be more one on one, and less about how "cool" can we make the leader look. For example, Harald is still on a wooden ship, despite having modern warships? Eh, okay.
     
  5. moysturfurmer

    moysturfurmer Emperor

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2010
    Messages:
    1,041
    Yeah, that's why leaderheads in Civ5 were such a major design bottleneck. You're not only designing the leader, but the horse, the throne, the boat, and so on. And more than that, you're making sure that all these elements you designed work naturally with one another and that there's no weird clipping or other such aberrations of geometry where the two elements meet.

    I love the 2.5D backgrounds (keen eyes will notice a bit of parallax happening w/ the background & middleground elements) not only for their stylized nature but also for the fact that they're easy to make. Affords the devs time to spend on more significant asset creation... alternate leaders for exisiting civs, let's say:mischief:
     
  6. Monado

    Monado King

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2005
    Messages:
    737
    I agree completely I am absolutely disappointed with these static backgrounds.

    I don't understand why they spent all the time and effort to make the leaders so well animated, when simply removing the background scenery and interaction with it totally ruins immersion. Its a small step forward and a massive leap backwards to me. All that extra time spent on leader animation is a waste when the leaders (Roosevelt and Cleopatra so far) stick out like sore ugly thumbs. I much rather have had the art team finish the background and make the leader feel like he/she is part of an existing world; as if they actually leading the enemy territory you're fighting against.

    Beyond Earth went with leaders infront of the static game world. This was a huge mistake for immersion in that game (immersion which was basically a non-existant failure). Granted the fictional BE leaders needed backgrounds more to develop the character than an actual historic Civ6 leader in which we already have some familiarity with, it is still a huge loss to the leader's personality.
     
  7. Krajzen

    Krajzen Deity

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2013
    Messages:
    2,908
    Location:
    Poland
    Ehh, those 2d backgrounds are very nice graphics and all (maybe even beautiful in case of Egyptian one) but they are still just paintings...
    As for the dev effort, well, I wouldn't expect multiple leaders per civ. Excluding backgrounds, most of pain of creating leaderscreen is still fully animated leader with full voiceover in native often obscure language, and not only that but civ6 also brings separate AI behavioras (agendas) for each leader, as well as separate bonus purely attached to him, so...

    I just wish they'd make more civs (or better leader backgrounds :p) than spend this effort on multiple leaders per same civ (iirc fevs said in one interview how 75% of pain of adding new civ in civ5 was leadrscreen and stuff associated with it lol)
     
  8. dexters

    dexters Gods & Emperors Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2003
    Messages:
    4,182
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Canada
    I think the painted backgrounds will allow for changes, if they so wish. It's much less expensive to do say a background for each era.

    We don't know yet if that's what they will do of course as the E3 gameplay reel seems to suggest Cleopatra had a fairly classical palace background when she DoW on China during the industrial era, but it could still be placeholder graphics.
     
  9. Spaceturtle

    Spaceturtle Chieftain

    Joined:
    May 12, 2016
    Messages:
    74
    Gender:
    Male
    I think there is a reason for everything.

    If you take a look to the diplomacy screen from the gameplay videos, it seems more complex than in Civ V. It has more options and the menus take more space on the screen.

    I think it's wise to waste less time and resources on the backgrounds if you are going to expend most of the time looking at menus.

    Also, judging by the icons in the top left of the diplomacy screen, we will be able to switch between leaders without leaving the diplomacy screen. That will be more fluid without having to load 3D backgrounds.

    This also means that it will be easier to mod new backgrounds. Perhaps even backgrounds that change with new eras.


    PLus we've only seen two leaders so far. Roosevelt's background is dull, but I think Cleopatra's is quite nice.
     
  10. AriochIV

    AriochIV Colonial Ninja

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2006
    Messages:
    5,959
    Location:
    Nehwon
    It's a trade-off, but the larger waist-up leader representations allow for more character expression.

    One of the things Jon Shafer said he wanted to do in Civ V was to cut out the plus and minus listing of diplomatic modifiers and rely more on the leader's expressions, but that didn't really work with the chosen style of the Civ V leader graphics.
     
  11. moopoo

    moopoo King

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2008
    Messages:
    729
    Location:
    Adelaide, Australia
    This will also help with modding. People were able to pull apart and rebuild the leaderheads in Civ 4 to create reasonable (in terms of quality and uniqueness) leaderheads in civ4, but all of that was simply impossible with civ 5. Hopefully civ 6 will giv the civ art community a chance to make animated leaders again
     
  12. Lucius_

    Lucius_ King

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2012
    Messages:
    806
    I imagine you've seen Cleopatra at this point? Immersion? I don't think a painted background or a fully rendered scene would make that much difference. The leaders are extremely stylized, which is fine, but isn't ideal for convincing the player of any sense of realism. I have a feeling Civ VI will very much feel like a game. Which again is fine, Civ III was like this, even with ending scenes with the defeated leaders taunting you to start another game so they can get a second try. I just don't think they are going for any kind of immersion, at least by what I think of that word anyway.
     
  13. Fred_Bear

    Fred_Bear Mutant Koala

    Joined:
    May 18, 2016
    Messages:
    42
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Australia
    Its still too early to tell how these scene's are set up. Are the leaders even in game 3D on the leader screen or actually a film animation composed over the top a still background image?

    Either way, it may be possible to include the things you want in the background actually into the foreground as background, as it were.

    Edit: I do appreciate the current leader back ground's style and art.
     
  14. stealth_nsk

    stealth_nsk Deity

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2005
    Messages:
    5,513
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Novosibirsk, Russia
    My bet is in-game 3d. Full videos require a lot of space, especially if 4K resolution is supported. And since there are no other objects in the scene, performance is not a problem.
     
  15. Barathor

    Barathor Emperor

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Messages:
    1,202
    Personally, I'm very happy that they're not only stylized and expressive, but they're all most likely going to be large and filling the screen better with the upper half of their body, like Teddy and Cleo so far. I would have been fine with a transparent background and blur effect, but adding in the 2D painted background is actually a very nice touch and an added bonus to further represent each leader's culture, and since they're darker they still allow the leaders to visually stand out more.

    I disliked the leader scenes in Civ 5 where the leaders were very small and/or the background overpowered the leader one should be focused on, in my opinion.
     
  16. labellavienna

    labellavienna Warlord

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2012
    Messages:
    132
    Does anyone have photos of what the op is talking about?

    There really should be a pictures only thread.
     
  17. AriochIV

    AriochIV Colonial Ninja

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2006
    Messages:
    5,959
    Location:
    Nehwon
    Civ VI Teddy
    Civ VI Cleopatra
     
  18. Zaarin

    Zaarin Chief Medical Officer, DS9

    Joined:
    May 14, 2016
    Messages:
    8,380
    Location:
    Terok Nor
    I agree, the little details in Civ5's leader screens went a long way towards giving the leaders personality. I loved the way Theodora's bracelets would clank together when she flicked her wrist, or how Washington would fiddle with his globe, or how Casimir would throw off his crown or Boudicca would throw down her axe when they were upset. I feel like Civ6 will be a trade off: the vivid details will be lacking but the leaders themselves will be more vivacious. Whether it's a fair trade will require time and experience to say, but it's certain that Civ6's leaders will not evoke the sense of awe that Civ5's did.

    All that being said, there is absolutely no reason why Civ6's matte paintings could not be more detailed; after all, many of Civ6's leaders were standing in front of matte paintings giving the illusion of space (Pachacuti, Odo Nobunaga, etc.).
     
  19. Ryika

    Ryika Lazy Wannabe Artista

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2013
    Messages:
    9,395
    The way I see it what's lost on the background is now transferred in expression and gesture. I already enjoy Cleopatra a lot more than I enjoyed most of the Leaders in CiV.
     
  20. moysturfurmer

    moysturfurmer Emperor

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2010
    Messages:
    1,041
    I mean, a 2.5 d bg wouldnt preclude any of this
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page