Possible spoiler alert, but really, if you haven’t played and thoroughly enjoyed the game by now, that’s entirely your own fault. Go and play it.
I love concept art.
Games particularly, since they are a virtual creation start to finish. Movies, by contrast, have concept art and then that’s sent to prop makers and so forth until eventually the meaning is muffled and distorted. It’s crazy when you play a game and you come across a scene that is literally identical to the original matte painting for it.
I really appreciate Valve for that. They seem to take such care in their work, and the quality shows in the end result. I’ve been playing a lot of Team Fortress 2 lately, as I mentioned, and even with no storyline, no explanation for anything it’s a completely satisfying experience. But, it’s one of the few games that doesn’t have a deeply engrained, well thought out storyline. The Half Life series is a huge testament to that, and both Left 4 Deads have within them an awesome journey. With Portal, as I’ve said before, they had one character in the first game and somehow the entire thing worked so brilliantly well. Tell me that isn’t some incredible writing / planning.
Once again I’ll be inspired to try and learn that style of digital matte painting and once again I’ll try over and over until I’m reduced to a sobbing mess over my tablet.
So, Valve, we love you. Keep being awesome.
Images thanks to the also fantastic CGSociety.
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