Sunday, 3 October 2010

Character Design - New Ideas

I have been finding it difficult to get into this project. Wondering exactly how to go about it. etc. I realise I need a basic story before I can design any characters, and right now, it's the story I've been struggling with. The first story idea was too generic and could fit into many other categories / themes. i.e. not just mythic, space opera.

So I suppose then next thing to do would be to look at other space opera stories or mythical stories. So you know, I've seen Star Wars and Star Trek. I've seen Jason and the Argonauts and Disney's Hercules. And from what I've found, the actual story of Hercules is completely different, but that's besides the point. The point is I need to create my own story combining these two themes. So the most useful thing I've found out is the dictionary definitions of myth, mythic, mythical and space opera.


1 a traditional story, esp. one concerning the early history of a people or explaining some natural or social phenomenon, and typically involving supernatural beings or events.
• such stories collectively : the heroes of Greek myth.
2 a widely held but false belief or idea : he wants to dispel the myth that sea kayaking is too risky or too strenuous | there is a popular myth that corporations are big people with lots of money.
• a misrepresentation of the truth : attacking the party's irresponsible myths about privatization.
• a fictitious or imaginary person or thing.
• an exaggerated or idealized conception of a person or thing : the book is a scholarly study of the Churchill myth.
ORIGIN mid 19th cent.: from modern Latin mythus, via late Latin from Greek muthos.

of, relating to, or resembling myth : we explain spiritual forces in mythic language.
• exaggerated or idealized : he was a national hero of mythic proportions.
• fictitious : a mythic land of plenty.
ORIGIN mid 17th cent.: via late Latin from Greek muthikos, from muthos ‘myth.’

occurring in or characteristic of myths or folk tales : one of Denmark's greatest mythical heroes.
• idealized, esp. with reference to the past : a mythical age of contentment and social order.
• fictitious : a mythical customer whose name appears in brochures.
mythically adverb

space opera
noun informal
a novel, movie, or television program set in outer space, typically of a simplistic and melodramatic nature.


As was discussed in the last character design session, my story needs history behind it. Something lost over time. My latest idea is that I should focus the story on mythical ideas and focus the space stuff on the concepts and style of characters.

Anyway I've thought up another or bits of another story idea.

I was thinking that each galaxy could be a god, or have been created by a god. I was also thinking that they would be at the centre of their galaxy or even imprisoned in the centre.
But then I was thinking either one god escapes or one god tricks the others into becoming prisoners of their own galaxy, with the selfish one left to rule over everything and create a universe of evil.
Then it would be up to the hero to somehow defeat the god and restore peace to the universe.
But then the hero is still lacking a motive. What's in it for him.

So another idea. (This one's more complete)

There's a hero and a villain. They are both after this artifact that was supposedly used to create the universe. And the holder of this artifact has the power to modify and control the universe. But its been lost over time. The hero with his sidekick is some sort of space archaeologist who is searching different galaxies for clues as to the where abouts of this artifact. But then always following behind them is the villain, someone who genuinely believes that if he gets hold of the artifact (while letting the hero do all the searching), he will become all powerful.
Along the way. The hero and sidekick discover alien races, get caught up in a bit of local trouble, with the main villain following behind.

I think this last idea is the most doable. It ticks all the boxes I think? Its in space. A myth about a lost artifact that created the universe, which may have some truth behind it. Both a hero with his sidekick and a villain looking for this artifact. They battle against other alien races for clues or pieces to the puzzle. I think it has some potential.

The next thing is to do the task set last week. Which is to play around with basic shapes to create some initial designs for my characters.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Ethan,
    Cool concept. I like the quest feel. I think you now should start thinking about introducing mythic imagery into the setting. Since star constellations are named after greek beasts/gods, perhaps worlds have a theme (minotaurs may be a bull like humanoid race from planet Minos etc). The costume design can also reflect this feel in some way (greek like helmets or toga like outfits). Much like Star Wars blends ancient japanese imagery with sci fi (Darth Vaders costume is based on a samurai helmet, and the kung fu inspired Jedi), you can apply the same approach to Grecian costumes.

    Battle Star Galactica (the original series)took its visual influences from ancient Eqypt (with Pharaoh like helmets etc):