Saturday 8 May 2010

Closer Look: Aurora Concept Art

I was taking a look at the Aurora concept art, the one with the massive desert and the wide expanse before the small and rather helpless looking hero, and it suddenly struck me there were a few things in there that I had not noticed before. (To get a better look at the art click the image, it will load in its full glory).

Firstly there is the obvious. The land is a desert, a ruined place with tumbled down ruins and the like. This ties into what we heard with the OXM interview and massive cover story where they saw concept art of the place being a very 'Arabic' themed landscape with tents and 'Arabian Nights' inspired bits and pieces. That settles me and actually makes a lot more sense than anything to do with America. It will not only emphasis the colonial aspect of the Albion people there, but also encourages a lot more of the magical side of things to be explored. You can see that to the right hand side of the picture there appears to be some kind of temple, ruined of course but with a design that would support the 'Arabic' feel.

On that notes that's something else I have noticed about the landscape. It seems and is driven by magic and the essence of a 'magic'. The swirling winds and the way the landscape is formed is in direct opposite to the preformed and man made way that Albion would be, with its factories and smoke driven economy. It will be interesting to see how Albion has interacted with the landscape and if they have bent it to their will with Logan in command. It also raises questions about who might turn up there. Personally I am hoping for Garth to be somewhere there, since him popping up seems to fit with the area and the look of his character would gel well with the aesthetic surroundings.

Now, onto the little bits and pieces going on in the artwork. There appears to be broken parts of massive statues in the sand. The faces appear human and very regal looking, almost like the Lord of the Rings with the way the helmets are formed. However, to the left is one worked into the same design as the large statue at the very middle and far edge of the picture. This seems a warped version of the human form, and seems to fit the same style as the 'Evil' Morph that we saw from the combat videos. Could this mean Aurora has some secrets to your power? Is the place a kind of 'Hell' or ruled over by something truly magical and evil? Whatever their purpose the evil statues play a big part in the landscape that seems to suggest that the original denizens of the place were not all that nice.

Something else that caught my attention is these little rascals. Your hero seems to be fighting these 'construct' style creatures in a lot of the small snippets from Aurora that we see in the videos. Many people have tied these to the 'Minions' from Fable and Fable: TLC and that would seem a fair assessment. This obviously won't mean that Jack of Blades is back (thankfully) but could mean that there is something pretty dark and doomed down there that's dredging these guys back into the world.

Of course take everything here with a pinch of salt, and it is only concept art. But, Aurora is looking a pretty interesting place, and if it goes along with the Arabic feel then I will be exploring it a lot when it becomes available to players in the course of the game.

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