art direction debate a picture is worth a thousand words hadn’t lived through the Diablo 3 art direction debate, in which several dozen pictures have spawned a library’s worth of argument. Bashiok dove into yet another iteration of it over on the B.net forums, where he tried to desaturate some of the contrasting hues.
It’s a long post since Bashiok made several follow up comments: click through to read the whole thing.
The initial poster said that all Jay Wilson ever addresses is the color issue, and he doesn’t mention the oversized shoulder pads or “goofy fantasy weapons.”
I think people see the barbarian‘s shoulder pads and then decide that it’s an exaggerated art style, which simply isn’t the case. The artists have had a very specific commitment to keeping items very much based in a realistic style, size, and appearance. Or at least as much as is appropriate for a fantasy game. Look at the hands, feet, head, facial features, etc. and you’ll see that they’re being kept at a very realistic proportion.
If anything I think the barbarian shoulder pad size could be shrunk a bit, and maybe it will be, but a single slot on a single class really shouldn’t be used to form an opinion when there are plenty of other pieces to examine that show the contrary.
This comment earns a reply in which someone asks for D3 to at least not have all the goofy, impractical weapons we see in WoW.
It’s definitely not Diablo, but I think that the ways in which it’s sometimes absurd and quirky are what make it an interesting world.
Also I think the crazy rotating crystals and weirdo squid-on-a-stick weapons look cool, and match that over-the-top visual and thematic style.
To that someone cites Diablo items and weapons as largely based in reality, which forces Bashiok to point to… actual D2 artwork.
There’s always going to be some amount of “hey, that looks cool” going into it. Diablo isn’t grounded in reality.
Things wrap up when someone tells Bashiok he shouldn’t have to defend Blizzard’s artwork.
Remember that you can read all Diablo Interviews, Previews and Panels from the Diablo 3 Media Coverage.