Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Influence: Day of the Tentacle

Whilst sketching out some basic ideas of how the Fountain Pen could effectively convey movement and emotion, I constantly kept thinking of how they managed to tackle a similar task in the 1993 LucasArts adventure game, Day of the Tentacle

Day of the Tentacle features, well, a tentacle that turns evil once it has consumed some contaminated water. Whilst the Purple Tentacle isn't an anthropomorphised object, it does have a physical construction that does lead it to move in a way similar to that of a person competing in a sack race, hopping along as opposed to walking or rolling along. This movement is a potential option of how the Fountain Pen in my animation can move around, being a basic, cylindrical shape. I even managed to find a walk cycle of the Purple Tentacle!

The Purple Tentacle also manages to convey a variety of emotions, through the manipulation of the three circles upon it. Whilst it could be argued that, yes, it clearly has a mouth etc, whilst the Fountain Pen does not, the facial features are not noticeably apparent and they do come from the manipulation of a generic shape. The circles aren't recognisable as facial features immediately, only when they shift shape does the character come to life. This isn't a new technique, we've all seen it in classic Disney movies, but as a child raised on old point-and-click adventure games, this is certainly the example that first springs to my mind.
In regards to my Fountain Pen, I've began to manipulate certain aspects of its construction in order to provide it with some character, for example, using the lip of the lid as somewhat of a mouth, the ring connecting the clip to the lid as an eyebrow (much like that of the Purple Tentacle and Grommit from Wallace and Grommit) and the clip as a single arm, as well as splitting the nib and treating each half as an individual foot. This is shaping up to be an interesting unit and I look forward to making this Fountain Pen come to life!

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