Friday, 1 October 2010

Research - Alan Wake (and other notes to do with light)

Today I bought this game for a bargain price, and couldn't resist playing it. And boy oh boy am I glad I bought it! It is deliciously spooky and has a fantastic plot that really makes your brain work hard. Despite the fact I have only played this game for a few hours, I already feel that this has some elements that will help me out.

For a start, check out some of the gorgeous landscapes the designers have crafted in the game. JUST LOOK AT THEM!

Don't they look pretty? The environment designers have really worked hard to create that lovely forest scenery. When you play the game, you really feel immersed in the town and believe in it. It looks and feels so real.

But what interests me the most is when the sun goes down and night time surrounds Mister Wake. This is when the real fun begins

I just want to emphasize that each of these night scenes use light ALOT. The game is based around the use of light and dark. The constant battle between the two forces is significant. What I really like is the sparks that fly of the birds when they are vanquished. I also like the eerie silhouetting of the buildings and miscellaneous objects.

Using light often helps with storytelling too. I feel that it is important for me to take into account how I should light my night time scene

I figured that the main light source would come from the moonlit window(s), a night light (?) or reflective surfaces. I also have considered that maybe there could be a toy that is active before the monster arrives, emitting a light and music. Here are some images of what I was thinking of:

Children's toys are often used in scary films, because they reflect on the innocence and vulnerability that you have as a child. I think the gold carousel just above this text is pretty scary looking. Though I want the light to shine out of windows that would contain the spinning characters, kinda like this -

... But maybe with coloured windows instead.

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