Reference Search, Shape Language and Other Clues

character design is essential to the success of any entertainment product. A character is a representation of the player in the game, his avatar, a link that creates a special bond between a person and virtual reality. So there is still a lot of work to be done in that direction. And you can’t do that without knowing the basic rules of character creation.

In this day and age, of course, it is no longer necessary to draw only by hand. This advanced software allows any design firm to streamline and accelerate the creation of symbols. From two-dimensional stylized to three-dimensional realistic. However, artists and sign designers still work according to certain rules. This includes drawing shapes, creating silhouettes, straight and curved lines. What does that mean? Let’s take a closer look at this.

It all starts with silhouettes.

A silhouette is a monochrome outline of something, in our case a character. The picture was taken from the side, and it makes sense: If the image is monochrome, the color image provides no information other than the display of an incomprehensible black spot.

The silhouette allows you to show the silhouette and pose of the character. It is essentially a shadow. Of course, with realistic numbers, like. B. People, hard to make the silhouettes of the main character and the side characters look different. In 2D styled games, it’s much easier to play with shapes and silhouettes. The memorable outlines of the protagonists make them easily recognizable in any setting, and even highlight their key features with good layout and thoughtfulness.

The silhouettes should be easy and quick to reproduce. If a 2D project is planned, they can be used to further draw the symbol in color. If it is a 3D project, the silhouettes are used for further conceptualization and brainstorming.

Straight lines and curves

As primitive as it may sound, one aspect of good line drawing is crucial to creating a character. In fact, the lines are everywhere, alternating to form the silhouette and all other parts of the drawing, which is already in color.

The secret of the figure’s visual appeal lies precisely in the alternation of straight and curved lines. As in no parallel. It is important to understand that straight lines are used to represent static structures and directions. The curves provide information about shape changes, e.g. B. How the muscles change position when a figure moves. During the animation, the contrast of all these lines allows the movement of the figure to be visually represented. Moreover, it is almost impossible to distinguish it from the real thing. When it comes to the style of realism, of course.

Working with forms

Basic shapes like circles, squares and triangles allow you to convey certain messages and give a character the characteristics you want. You’ve probably seen many times in artist’s videos how a complex pattern is created from an original round or square shape. What can happen to an elemental figure? Yet they become eyes and turn into something totally unimaginable.

Each simple figure evokes certain associations. Thus the circle and everything associated with it is associated with something lovely, friendly and naive. The square is seen as something solid, stubborn, immovable. The triangle is often used to create the features of cunning and sinister antagonistic characters.

This does not mean that good characters should be round and bad characters should be triangular. These are just the basic psychological characteristics of simple characters. They can be combined to create more complex characters and personalities that are not linear, for example. B. a combination of what is incompatible. The variations are endless.


While all artwork is an important and serious undertaking, character design is considered the key to perfect storytelling and a better connection with the player. Therefore, creating a character should not be taken lightly. When choosing a designer, pay attention not only to creativity, but also to experience and knowledge of the basics. Kevuru Games Character Design Studio provides stylized and realistic character design services for games of all genres and complexity. The team at this design studio has faced a wide variety of challenges and knows exactly how to bring your idea to life.

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