The art of games can be described as the way a computer draws a picture in a space, then animates that picture.
Art director David Vonderhaar said that’s because a computer has no way of creating a picture that looks right.
“You can only create one picture for every pixel in your image, so if you want to do an animated image, you have to know exactly what you want,” he said.
“But a computer can do it automatically.”
Vonderhayr was working with a team at Atari when he noticed that the artists in his games were constantly changing their styles to match the way the computer drew.
They weren’t always trying to achieve the same effect.
“We wanted to find out what was going on with the artists, to see if they were doing things incorrectly, to make sure they were creating the same kind of picture,” he told New Scientist.
Voderhayl and his team tried to get an idea of what was happening with the artist, to find the “correct” way to draw the picture. “
So it was like they were drawing a picture of the computer’s computer system, which would look different in real life than it would in a computer program.”
Voderhayl and his team tried to get an idea of what was happening with the artist, to find the “correct” way to draw the picture.
“The thing that we found is that the art team would change their styles very quickly if they had a different picture in mind,” he explained.
“If you look at some of the artists on the art board, they were very quick to change their style depending on the picture they were working on.”
In the games themselves, that style change would be gradual, as the artists’ art changes based on what they were seeing on the screen.
In this case, it was a scene where the protagonist was getting attacked by a zombie and it was difficult to tell whether that was a good image or a bad image.
“In the game, you see this guy in a tank that he’s wearing, which is really scary,” Vonderhares said.
As the scene progressed, the characters would move in a different way to represent the zombie, and eventually they’d lose their camouflage and become the zombies themselves.
“It’s not clear what was really going on in the artist’s head,” Voderhares told New Zealand’s Stuff newspaper.
“Maybe they were thinking that the picture was not good, but the computer was drawing it, so maybe they were trying to do it incorrectly.”
Vaderhayle says he found this phenomenon was also observed in some other games.
For example, in the popular Mario Kart, the graphics department had to draw a line between the racers’ eyes and the backgrounds of the racings’ tracks.
Vonderhat’s team did not notice any differences between their drawing and the drawing of the programmers, who had designed the game.
“What we didn’t see was that the programmers were drawing the racials in the wrong way,” Vaderhares explained.
The computer’s artists were making “really ugly pictures” but the programmers weren’t, so the game wasn’t getting the attention it deserved.
VaderHayl said the team was surprised to discover that the programmer who was creating the game had never used an artistic process, but had been drawn to computer art.
“For us, this was a real shock,” he commented.
Votere said the programmer had been a fan of computer games, having seen some of them on TV and in magazines. “
They were the ones who had created all the graphics for the games.”
Votere said the programmer had been a fan of computer games, having seen some of them on TV and in magazines.
“I’m still quite impressed by the fact that the programming guys had actually used art to help them make games.
It was their job, and they had the technical knowledge to do the art work,” he added.
“There’s a huge difference between programming and drawing, and it’s an incredibly powerful technique to be able to create computer art, which I think has been used in other industries.”