MMO-Champion - Artcraft - A First Look - New Human Female Character Model
Artcraft - A First Look
The new Human Female character model is here!



Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Hi, I’m Chris Robinson, senior art director of World of Warcraft, and this is the first in a series of articles we're creating to bring you all closer to the development of the player character model revamps we announced at BlizzCon. In this series, we'll give you an inside look at the process we go through to do one of these revamps, discuss the kinds of art issues we're addressing with the new models, and provide a bit of insight our future plans for their continued polish.

We're happy to begin our series by sharing a first look at where we're at with the Human female. While future articles won’t always be about revealing a new model, we thought this would be a great introduction to the approach we take for every one of these redesigns.

We’re looking at these model revamps as a sort of “spiritual update” to the art content that currently exists in-game—except we’re completely redoing them from scratch. That includes the base model, skin tone variations, customization options (e.g. wrinkles, scars, moles, earrings, etc.), hairstyles, and any skin variations for NPCs you see out in the world, like Iron Dwarves or Leper Gnomes. We’re pretty excited about some of the ideas you've given us for new customization and skin options you’d like to see, but our first goal—which is already a monumental endeavor—is to make sure that the visual content that currently exists is brought up to or surpasses the level of quality you see in current boss models, the Pandaren, and central NPCs like the new Vol’jin model.

With the revamp, we’re completely overhauling every aspect of the player models, but our goal is to do so while retaining the core look and feel that has always made them your character. We'll feel like we've succeeded if you see the updated version of your character and it still feels like you’re looking at the character you’ve been playing for the past however many years—only someone has finally focused a lens.

To achieve this, we’re increasing the polygon count significantly (in some cases going from less than 1,000 to over 5,000), more than doubling the texture resolution, increasing bone count significantly to support updated animation and facial expression, and retouching nearly every animation for all of the characters. For animation alone, that’s roughly 180 animations per character, times 10 races in both male and female variants, equaling approximately 3,600 animations. We’re also incorporating the rigging technology we introduced with the Pandaren into every character to provide better posing, smoother animation, and the ability to pull off some fantastic facial expressions. In the weeks and months ahead, we’re going to be bringing you in for a closer look at some of the processes, challenges, and results of this revamp process.

What you’re looking at here for the Human female is a single face option and a single skin tone on the base model without any animation or posing. When developing the base model we keep the expression on the face as devoid of emotion or expression as possible, as that allows our animators a greater range of motion when they start posing and morphing the face into different expressions. If we were to put any amount of expression—even a slight smile or mildly angry eyebrows—in the base model, that would carry through to every animation, and we'd end up with some very confused-looking characters.

Joe Keller is a senior character artist on our team and was responsible for the lion’s share of modeling and texturing the Human female. Here's what he had this to say about this challenge:

“Everyone is pretty familiar with the Human character models in WoW, but working on these updates gives us a chance to embellish and fill in the blanks. For the Human female this meant we could give her more muscle definition and personality in the face while still staying true to the overall look and spirit of the original. Hopefully this will also help show her as more of the capable fighter that she is.”

This process has been a welcome challenge for all of us on the World of Warcraft art team. We’ve all wanted to address the player models and bring them up to a more current fidelity for some time now, and we’re as excited as you are to get these models into the game. We hope you’ll enjoy this series as we invite you to meet the team and see more on our development process.

Thanks so much, and see you next time.

Previously Previewed Models

This article was originally published in forum thread: Artcraft – A First Look - New Human Female Character Model started by chaud View original post
Comments 514 Comments
  1. mackeral's Avatar
    looks terrible, honestly the amount of hype they have encouraged about this while subject is going to come back and bite their arse when ppl see the sub-par quality of their work
  1. RosmertaED's Avatar
    omg what a improvement looks great
  1. derpkitteh's Avatar
    she kinda looks like me and she isn't even animated yet. this is a dream come true <3

    now, i'll be able to make a character that looks almost 100% like me :'D
  1. foxHeart's Avatar
    Maybe it'll look better in-motion. Don't really care for it, though. Some of those hairstyles are pretty cute, but her face just looks off, somehow.
  1. Goretex's Avatar
    This is Muscular lol
  1. Sathric's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Goretex View Post
    This is Muscular lol
    No, that...THAT.. is something else.

    Quote Originally Posted by mackeral View Post
    looks terrible, honestly the amount of hype they have encouraged about this while subject is going to come back and bite their arse when ppl see the sub-par quality of their work
    How is that terrible compared to the soon-to-be old one? The improvment is so massive it makes me wonder what u guys are on.
  1. Airbag888's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Sathric View Post
    No, that...THAT.. is something else.



    How is that terrible compared to the soon-to-be old one? The improvment is so massive it makes me wonder what u guys are on.
    He's not comparing it to the old one. He's comparing it to what's done in the industry. This is at best 2007 level of models. We're not asking for TressFX but, actually doesn't matter at this point they need a new engine
  1. NigelGurney's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by grexly75 View Post
    Still bashing WoW I see, do you even play it and if not then why do you care what happens with WoW or are you just trying to start a flame war..

    But then again as the old saying goes haters are gonna hate..

    - - - Updated - - -



    Lets to see you do any better, when you can do better then folks might take you seriously.. The thing is that when you are designing the models for a game like this you try to make the models look as good as possible without dragging down peoples computers..

    Considering that the original models used 1000 polys and they have made them look as good as they have with 5000 polys then that is very well done..
    "Lets see you do any better" are you five years old?
  1. leszeq's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by sirio View Post
    too muscular..??!! did u maybe forget that they are fighters and no Housewife..WTF dude use your brain.
    Did you maybe forget that Blizz is going to change every female human NPC in game? Not all of them are fighters... Use your brain.
  1. Karnige's Avatar
    looks great to me. no complaints.
  1. felcommander's Avatar
    Every time I open the home page now I feel as though I'm looking at some kind of animated porno.
  1. Ghier's Avatar
    OK i'm not against muscle but why just the arms? Running thousands of quests would eliminate body fat and make those legs toned as hell. How about something like this?

    or this?
  1. Tuuralihn's Avatar
    Over all it's good. They could've done something different with the nose though.
  1. Airbag888's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by leszeq View Post
    Did you maybe forget that Blizz is going to change every female human NPC in game? Not all of them are fighters... Use your brain.
    Another limitation of the engine.. change 1 and it changes them all. Not talking about the skins but the skeleton/size attributes
  1. Peakone's Avatar
    Human female looks nice.

    But if this is the final new model for Taurens just dont make the effort to "upgrade" it... they look like teddies lol
  1. True Anarch's Avatar
    Looks horribly bad? ... You'd think they'd try to give at least EQN quality graphics or something, guess not. I guess they want competition to kick them out of business in 2014.
  1. Dirkdigg82's Avatar
    Look like Yoni!
  1. Souxlya's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Anarch the Conqueror View Post
    Looks horribly bad? ... You'd think they'd try to give at least EQN quality graphics or something, guess not. I guess they want competition to kick them out of business in 2014.
    Blizzard will continue to stay cartoon-ish, so they will never look "good" to you. Their competition will also look like shiny outdated barbie dolls half way through their games 2 million player, 2 year life span. People that don't play WoW because of graphics haven't seemed to actually hurt Blizzard's subscriptions, compared to actual game play changes and content. This is an upgrade and a damn good one at that, so I'll take it. Go complain about graphics quality to people who actually care about shiny "high def" barbie dolls, let those other games spend millions on making games that don't last more then 2 years before its FTP and they never touch the graphics again.
  1. Nathiest's Avatar
    The body looks great but the face looks too cartoonish.
  1. Sathric's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Airbag888 View Post
    He's not comparing it to the old one. He's comparing it to what's done in the industry. This is at best 2007 level of models. We're not asking for TressFX but, actually doesn't matter at this point they need a new engine
    Well.. would look stupid if the models didn't match the rest of the world (of warcraft) by looking "too good".
    Wow will never look realistic or compete with the graphics of newer mmo's that go for graphics. Why should wow change it's unique and legendary look?
    Nothing to complain about.

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