Friday, March 11, 2011

Gateway Journal Day 05: MUGGED!

I've never been mugged in my life before, until last night...and I have lived in places far more crime-ridden than this part of Gateway.

I was walking back from the Tilted Table, the sun was going down and I got a little lost, which is fine because usually that's how you find interesting stuff... besides, I wasn't in a hurry. Anyways, I happened upon the coolest little garden wedged between two rowhouses... it had this amazingly ornate little gate and there was a bench, so I decided to step inside, have a seat and look over my map of Canal City.

As I am sitting there, I hear this voice behind me: "That's my bench yer sittin on there."

I jumped up and turned around to face a hooded, hunched over figure who had four arms (a Trevian I think they are called), and two of them had guns in them, pointed at me. Needless to say I gave the Trevian whatever he wanted.... which was money. I was given a daily stipend by my benefactor which I can pick up at any one of a local chain of banks whenever I choose.... lucky for this gentleman I had just picked up a few days worth of my allowance that very afternoon.

He also wanted to look through my bag, in case I was holding out on him. I had a bottle of sap-n-citrus water (a popular beverage here), he took that, then he discovered my sketch-journal. He flipped through it, complimented me on my skilled hand, then pummelled me over the head with the butt of his gun. Nice fellow.

A little girl and her mother who live in one of the houses next to the park found me when I woke up. They graciously took me into their home, tended to my wounds, and offered me a meal and a place to stay for the night, since clearly it wasn't safe for me to wander around these parts in the dark.

I was glad to find that the mugger did not take anything other than the money and the drink.

So today, I bought myself some protection. I decided that since I would probably find myself in worse neighborhoods than this one throughout my travels, it probably makes sense to have a little insurance policy along with me. People here in Gateway seem to carry weapons around with seemingly little scandal (though some public locations and businesses prohibit them): swords, daggers, and small blunderbusses like this one. This gun, which was previously owned, fires a single projectile with the aide of two leystones which propel the shot forward when the hammer falls and they strike each other. Of course, they don't always work, or the leystones can lose their juice, so this one came with a handy little bayonet to attach on the end

This is actually the first deadly weapon I have owned, so hopefully I won't have to use it, but maybe it will make me less of an obvious target. Good times.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Reckoning concept art that I can finally show!

So, today there are a bunch of articles all over the 'net about the game I have been working on: "Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning", like these:

Gamespot Article

G4 TV Article

Joystiq Article

RPGFan Article (Be sure to check out their extensive screenshots gallery too)

So, since some of the articles feature some of the concept art I did for the game, I figured I would show it on my blog! So, enjoy!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Gateway Journal Day 04: Looking Inward

No Leystone for me today, instead I decided to hang out in a café due to the torrential rain.

Something I was told at the outset by my benefactor was to be sure to showcase the people of Gateway, and not just the architecture and the details. So I decided to sketch some of the patrons at the Tilted Table Café, where I am told the pastries are top-notch.

As I have said before, Gateway is full of people of all shapes and sizes, but there are definitely some types of people that you see more of than others, at least as far as I can tell having only seen the Canal City section of Gateway so far.

Humans are very common and are everywhere, with the same range of diversity that you might expect to see in a typical major city.

Next are the Torrans and Argethians.

Torrans are a very solid, stocky people with massive square heads, large hands and kindly facial features. They tend to range anywhere from 7 to 9 feet tall and have little or no hair on their heads. They have been described to me as spiritual folk, who are generally good-humored and come from a mountainous land where they lead simple, almost monastic lives worshipping nature and tending to well-manicured gardens. Here in Gateway, they seem to live pretty much like everyone else and are held in high regard for their mental and physical healing skills. The one exception to this is the Argethians, some of whom apparently regard the Torrans with some amount of suspicion, which has been known to cause “issues” in certain neighborhoods. I think it goes back to an old, bitter war from some time ago.... same old story, I guess, no matter where you go.

Argethians are a close cousin of humans , except they have skull-like noses, pallid, grayish skin, very small ears, and generally tend to look, well, OLD. Not to say that an Argethian can’t be healthy and fit in their youth like anyone else, the gentleman I sat near in the café looked like he was quite capable of beating me to a pulp. But an Argethian’s skin is tight to the bones in the face and somewhat wrinkled. Szerta, the woman who owns the pension I am staying in, is an Argethian. She tells me they look the way they do because of a curse placed on their people long ago by a God who was jealous of their beauty, but she sort of laughed it off as an old legend.

The Salorans, or fish-folk as they are known, are less common, but by no means a rare sight in Gateway. They tend to be more magically attuned than your average citizen and can vary quite wildly in size, shape and color, just like regular fish. I am told there is a Saloran who is as big as a city block here in Gateway. Apparently, as Salorans grow older and wiser they become more fish-like, losing their humanish legs and arms in favor of fins and fish tails and eventually returning to the Sea, if they live long enough. As such, Salorans can be quite old, I have heard they have been known to live over 500 years.

By no means is this the extent of the range of peoples of Gateway. There are folk who have 4 arms, some who are half-man, half-bird, some with floating heads or limbs, and still others with crab claws for hands.

Speaking of crab claws, one thing I have noticed is that a lot of stuff in Gateway seems to make reference to the Sea and creatures from it, which I suppose makes sense since Gateway is located on several major bodies of water. To illustrate what I mean: my coffee mug was adorned with sea shells and a sea serpent of some sort, and my snack was a squid-biscuit sandwich with lemon jelly. I know what you are saying, but actually it wasn’t bad! If you ever find yourself at the Tilted Table Café in Gateway’s Canal City, I recommend you try one!