• Member Since 27th Apr, 2012
  • offline last seen Feb 14th, 2021

JaketheGinger


There are a few Jakes on this website. I'm the ginger one.

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Jun
3rd
2016

Overwatch vs Battleborn: a brief post on character design · 11:54pm Jun 3rd, 2016

So guess what?

Finally done with exams!

T-Thanks…

Now I can spend time sitting on my ass and doing absolutely nothing, all while enjoying the sun. (Sometimes at least, I am in Bongland after all.)

So why not kick things off with a blog post? Yeah, sounds good. But let’s not make it pony related, just to spice things up, yeah?

Cool.



So, unless you’ve been living under a damp rock for the past couple of weeks, you’ll know that a brilliant FPS (I know I’m triggering at least one person right now :^) ) known as Overwatch has come out. Think what you like of it but the game has been a stellar success, selling 7 million copies by now (although bear in mind it is cross platform). Yep, Overwatch couldn’t have had a better launch date. It’s probably one of the best launches in gaming history. In fact, I might even say that—

‘Scuse us.

Oh yeah. This was a thing.

Battleborn was released May 3rd, with Overwatch having an open beta around the same time and being released on May 24th. Battleborn is… wew, it’s hilarious in sad way in how bad it’s doing. Don’t believe me? Check the stats.

As of writing, there are more people playing games such as Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 - Multiplayer than there are people playing Battleborn.

… the fuck happened?

I intend to get the bottom of this train wreck, comparing Overwatch to Battleborn in how they handled character design. I could look at other aspects but that’d take all day. Plus, I don’t own Battleborn, so comparing gameplay would be unfair anyway.

This is gonna be brief and a messy ramble, so don't take it too seriously as an essay on good character design or something. This is just my thoughts.

Hence the point of a blogpost.

Welp.

Character Design

Okay, Overwatch knocked Battleborn out of the park when it comes to character design. Let’s compare to see why, shall we?

First, Tracer. The poster girl of Overwatch. Also best Overwatch girl in general. I mean, she is classic British.

Tracer’s design is unique but also slick and not over complicated. It’s very pleasing to the eye, in more ways than one. For example, her eyes are quite big, a feature commonly used in animation to make characters seem cute. Bigger eyes mean a character looks more honest. Notice how bad guys have thin eyes? That’s why.

Then there’s the Iron Man thing on her chest. It draws your attention but look at the design: it’s simple. It catches the eye but doesn’t draw away from the complete package.

She also wears skintight leggings. Let’s all admit it here: Tracer has a great ass. Some of you may not like it but it’s true: sex sells. Just look at the feature box on this site. Creating an attractive character is definitely going to attract potential audience members because, let’s face it, a lot of us can be swayed by tempting our libdio. It’s human nature.

Now let’s look at Battleborn:

This the closest thing Battleborn has to a poster girl. I think. And on the surface, it doesn’t seem too awful, but a couple of things bug me here:

Why is one leg wearing something and the other is exposed? What purpose does only one foot being bare possibly serve? I don’t understand. It bugs me because it doesn’t make sense and it’s distracting.
Could probably do without the face paint. It looks a bit odd, having just one red stripe there. Either go whole hog with it or don’t even bother.
Something seems off about her face but I can’t tell what exactly…

OH MY GAAAAWHD

That’s kinda grotesque. I’m not gonna lie. Looks like an ayy lmao. Maybe that's the point...? But it looks way too uncanny valley to be nice to look at.

But honestly, Thorn isn’t that bad. I guess.

So let’s compare male characters.

This is Reinhardt. Can you guess what he does?

His armor, like Tracer, is sleek and easy on the eyes, whilst not having too many complex parts. What detail is there is often small and helps complete the picture, like the dents in his armor, or the few bits of paint. He looks like a big guy but one can attribute that to the armor; his body proportions seem sensible and in line with each other.

Also he has a giant hammer. That’s sweet.

Okay, your turn Battleborn. Let’s see what you got—

JEEEEESUS

Is this man okay? Is he well? I can’t tell but his head isthe size of a pinprick. In comparison with the rest of his body, it looks ridiculous. His whole build does. Reinhardt looks big too but again, look at his body proportions. In comparison to this abomination, he looks downright normal. AND he’s wearing heavy ass armor, no doubt adding to his sense of size, while this guy ain’t.

Bloody hell.

See, this is the thing. In Overwatch, the characters look unique but none of them particularly stand out from the other. They all fit in together. With Battleborn, you got that… thing, the elf guy, a mushroom guy, a birdman, a posh gentlemen robot, a penguin in a mech suit—GAH! STOP! The randomness is overwhelming!

There’s nothing wrong with having crazy looking characters. But if that’s what you’re going for, then they all have to fit relatively well together.

Overwatch follows a similar guiding principle to TF2’s character design, which does a better job with consistency than Overwatch itself. Well, until the hats got retarded. But just look at the TF2 mercs and you’ll see what I mean.

Also this is subjective but Battleborn’s art style looks really kinda ugly. Overwatch looks more like Pixar.

Kinda see why people might favor Overwatch more.

-JaketheGinger

-P.S. Pinkie is still my one true waifu but if Tracer had come before her… oof.

Comments ( 4 )

The eclectic characters of Battleborn do have a reason for being so varied. They're supposed to be a group of aliens from different systems, all converging together to save the last star of the universe. Meaning not all of them are going to look like they're part of the same world. Because they're not; they're all from different worlds. It's a neat idea, but I'm guessing it didn't work for you. :applejackunsure:

Truth be told, I do like the characters of Overwatch more, if only because they have a lot more personality. Hell, Overwatch doesn't even have a campaign mode, yet I feel like I know Hanzo and Genji's conflict better than the one between Mellka and Deande. Though to be honest, that might be the point.

Battleborn is supposed to be silly and over-the-top. You're not supposed to think about it too much; you're just supposed to kick ass and enjoy the ride. Yet that's the game with the campaign mode, while the detailed lore of Overwatch is relegated to promotional material. It's a crazy world we live in, I tell ya. :applejackconfused:

Well if you want a Pinkie that is a little bit more human...

orig11.deviantart.net/7d4a/f/2013/036/e/5/friendship_is_magic_02_by_mauroz-d5tvbjr.png

Pinkie in this comic is a bit of fun.

This is Reinhardt. Can you guess what he does?

He teaches penmanship at the local academy? :trollestia:

I mean, she is classic British.

What? She's not wearing her burka or getting buttsexed by Arabs.

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