Royal Guardian
Platform
Steam
#4
Looks awesome!! Is there also a male before-after? I'd be curious to see because those where the blockiest. Will all toons be changed to the new slim or only new toons/makeovered toons?
 

Ivar Hill

Mad Otter Games
Developer
#5
Looks awesome!! Is there also a male before-after? I'd be curious to see because those where the blockiest. Will all toons be changed to the new slim or only new toons/makeovered toons?
All characters are changed since we're updating the model file itself.

The male changes are not as significant as we decided to focus mainly on improving the female character models (though the male ones are blocky, that's more of an aesthetic choice - whereas the old female models had more anatomical and model-related issues). That said, male characters do receive a bunch of all-new faces!
 

Ivar Hill

Mad Otter Games
Developer
#7
Some notes on that since I know the subject will definitely be brought up -

We are not specifically striving for 100% anatomical correctness, and even so there's a billion variations of what the proportions of the human body looks like -thin, plump, tall, short, large-chested, small-chested, anything inbetween!

With our limited resources we cannot make a wide range of anatomical choices, so no matter what we do for it will leave out the majority of the range of what people looks like. With this in mind, we are aiming for a character model that feels in line with a mystical fantasy world, with 'elfish' proportions and something that an athletic lifestyle would lean closer towards. (you are, after all, spending all day in battle or working in the village!)

Some of you - in particular those who value the idea of representing yourselves within the game - may feel that the new model is further from an accurate representation of you, just as there are those who feel this model is closer to an accurate representation of them. But since there are such a huge range of what people look like, there's just no way to account for everyone, and hopefully this model can still achieve the feeling of a fantasy world.
 
Royal Guardian
Characters
See Signature
Platform
PC
#9
Looks great Ivar! Any word on whether character height will be fixed in the coming update? They have not functioned since mounts were added yet the slider is still there in character create. No matter your selection, you'll always come out as the same default height.
 

Ivar Hill

Mad Otter Games
Developer
#10
My bad for going there, apologies :p
No need to! It's a reasonable conversation to have :)

Looks great Ivar! Any word on whether character height will be fixed in the coming update? They have not functioned since mounts were added yet the slider is still there in character create. No matter your selection, you'll always come out as the same default height.
I'll have to check on that. Admittedly though, height has never worked that well in V&H, changing the entire model size rather than properly just adjusting height. We'd definitely like to improve this in the future, though it's beyond the scope of this revamp.
 
Characters
Layla Littlenymph
Platform
PC, Steam
#11
It took me a while, but I had finally gotten used to the body forms on V&H, but this is a huge improvement. I like it even more than the original redesign that got rid of the giant hands.
I see a lot of makeovers in the not so distant future.
 
Likes: Dawnfire
Platform
iOS
Last edited
#13
I see a particular problem with the female form. It seems to feed into the whole thing of in order for women to look right they have to be anorexic. I would hate for this game to do what every other game does and makes women look like super models that at are held to an impossible standard set by men. Certainly this is just a game, but I like this one in particular because it does not do most things that other games do like storylines, pricing etc. I would hate for this game to objectify women just like every other game. That does not look athletic. It looks like she eats 700 calories a day and induces vomiting if she is over by a gram.

Below is images of top athletes. You can see that compared to the new model they look much more muscular and filled out. And these athletes are runners and ballerinas—the slimmest of female athletes.

The term you used to describe the new fantasy trend “elfish” is also concerning. If you wanted to make them elves give them pointy ears and make them elves. In the context of describing the human female body this term translates to “white.”

Finally, the fact that only the female bodies are getting this overhaul because the male bodies were “blocky” as an aesthetic choice shows that elven is not the goal. The males clearly aren’t. Only the females are getting this treatment which is at best concerning.
 

Attachments

Royal Guardian
Platform
Steam
#14
I see a particular problem with the female form. It seems to feed into the whole thing of in order for women to look right they have to be anorexic. I would hate for this game to do what every other game does and makes women look like super models that at are held to an impossible standard set by men. Certainly this is just a game, but I like this one in particular because it does not do most things that other games do like storylines, pricing etc. I would hate for this game to objectify women just like every other game. That does not look athletic. It looks like she eats 700 calories a day and induces vomiting if she is over by a gram.
its not THAT bad really. If they objectified women the breast size would at least be an F
 

Dawnfire

Jack Of All Trades
Characters
Athon Stormborne
Platform
Android, PC
#15
I see a particular problem with the female form. It seems to feed into the whole thing of in order for women to look right they have to be anorexic. I would hate for this game to do what every other game does and makes women look like super models that at are held to an impossible standard set by men. Certainly this is just a game, but I like this one in particular because it does not do most things that other games do like storylines, pricing etc. I would hate for this game to objectify women just like every other game. That does not look athletic. It looks like she eats 700 calories a day and induces vomiting if she is over by a gram.
While I do see your point and more body options would definitely be cool, I also feel like an over exaggaration of this situation. Let me just quote Ivar on this.

With our limited resources we cannot make a wide range of anatomical choices, so no matter what we do for it will leave out the majority of the range of what people looks like. With this in mind, we are aiming for a character model that feels in line with a mystical fantasy world, with 'elfish' proportions and something that an athletic lifestyle would lean closer towards. (you are, after all, spending all day in battle or working in the village!)

They are not based on super model looks, but something that is "elfish" or fantasy world like. And honestly majority of us would look like that if we fought, gathered, crafted and tended to our garden as much as we do in game.
 
Likes: Littlenymph

Ivar Hill

Mad Otter Games
Developer
#16
@Temugin
Thank you for voicing your concern! Objectification and skewed body ideals are definitely a very real concern, and we do want to make sure we are not enforcing destructive stereotypes.

I see a particular problem with the female form. It seems to feed into the whole thing of in order for women to look right they have to be anorexic. I would hate for this game to do what every other game does and makes women look like super models that at are held to an impossible standard set by men. Certainly this is just a game, but I like this one in particular because it does not do most things that other games do like storylines, pricing etc. I would hate for this game to objectify women just like every other game. That does not look athletic. It looks like she eats 700 calories a day and induces vomiting if she is over by a gram.
First and foremost I would like to point out that V&H, like many other games in the genre, employs a stylized aesthetic - in this context this means that things are over-emphasized. Animations are less subtle than they would be in real life, weapons and objects are larger, combat moves look more pronounced, and so on. This also applies to anatomy - so if we did want to go for a more "elfish" look (I'll return to that term later), having proportions that look slightly over-emphasized fits into this art style. Note the stress on slightly - this can certainly be overdone as well. However, here's the point:

In a visual style that is stylized overall, a body that looks a little bit over-exaggerated in its slimness is contextualized by the surrounding art.
Or to use an example: If a game had a super-realistic art style, an overly slim body would look very out of place (or directly anorexic) since everywhere else the proportions are realistic. However, in a more stylized game everything receives this treatment, so it lets you put it into a fitting context.

Below is images of top athletes. You can see that compared to the new model they look much more muscular and filled out. And these athletes are runners and ballerinas—the slimmest of female athletes.
I agree that our models do not look like athletes specifically - that is why I worded it as a result of an athletic lifestyle as viewed through the lens of our fantasy art style. Which brings us to:

The term you used to describe the new fantasy trend “elfish” is also concerning. If you wanted to make them elves give them pointy ears and make them elves. In the context of describing the human female body this term translates to “white.”
I would disagree with the idea that this is a "new fantasy trend". Fantasy has historically been a very diverse collection of aesthetics and ways to portrait the human body, and the idea of a more aggressively slender body is a very old concept. Alongside many others of course - for instance highly stylized muscles (i.e. 'amazons' or the 'Conan' style), the idea of the 'overweight merchant', and so on... it is just one style among many but one that fits the "mystical" aspect of V&H. I would argue that these fantasy archetypes predate modern-day body ideals, and many were concieved during a time period where the female ideal in western society was one of plumpness rather than slimness. All that being said, I would also argue that it is not particularly relevant because of contextualization (see the bolded sentence above).

Fantasy is also a mishmash of many different concepts and "elves" are not really present in the V&H universe any more than "humans" are as a defined species. There is nothing that says an elf has to borrow from the entirety of Tolkien's playbook for instance, and the same applies to any other aspects of fantasy.

Finally, the fact that only the female bodies are getting this overhaul because the male bodies were “blocky” as an aesthetic choice shows that elven is not the goal. The males clearly aren’t. Only the females are getting this treatment which is at best concerning.
Here there is a misunderstanding and probably poor communication on my end. While the male body remains largely unchanged this is not due to current choice as much as priorities. We want to update the male body in similar ways and also make it more slim and more athletic-looking, we simply had to prioritize for a few reasons. One of these reasons is player feedback - we receive many more complaints about the appearance of female models (not necessarily because they don't fit into a stereotype but also simple personal preference and subjectivity).

Anyway, as I said in a previous post, this is a useful and healthy conversation to have and I'm glad you brought up your concerns. We do want to make sure we don't feed into destructive behaviors, but I also think that the context of this being a highly stylized fantasy world changes how it has to be perceived. Do feel free to discuss further, however! :)
 
Characters
Caly Adaria Chrysis & 2 others
Platform
PC
Last edited
#18
Omgosh!!!!! Ivar they look fantastic!!!!!! I can have skin color to match my mount or my outfit or ..... 😁 I can hear my hubby now saying "no you may not buy more makeover kits right now you just changed all your toons a week ago!" Lmao
Edited to add; As an aside I personally prefer the old model although I really like the new one too. I envy my toon either way because while slim is society preference I most definitely land on the "fluffy" side of the scale in real life haha.
 
Royal Guardian
Platform
Steam
#19
Omgosh!!!!! Ivar they look fantastic!!!!!! I can have skin color to match my mount or my outfit or ..... 😁 I can hear my hubby now saying "no you may not buy more makeover kits right now you just changed all your toons a week ago!" Lmao
Edited to add; As an aside I personally prefer the old model although I really like the new one too. I envy my toon either way because while slim is society preference I most definitely land on the "fluffy" side of the scale in real life haha.
As long they scale down the feet a bit I'm good! :p
 
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