27 March, 2017

Last Image of the Lawbringer

The Lawbringer needed a few features to make it feasible as a vehicle for our Agents of the Law. It needed mirrors, headlights, indicators, seat cushioning, footplates, display consoles, and handlebars.

To add a bit more to it. I've also added Department of Law insignia (to the front, and on each side at the back), and some cooling fins to the main engine at the rear wheel. I'm working on the assumption that these bikes will be electrically driven, so there's no real need for a massive engine assembly in it. 

Applying the previous filters to the image, I get something like this...

...and I think we're basically done.

Now it's time to move on to the uniforms of the Agents of Law, and their two signature firearms (the taser used by training agents and the multi-purpose multi-ammo assault pistol used by full agents). 

26 March, 2017


Agents of the law have signature equipment. Often these pieces of equipment have the word "Law" in their title somewhere.

"Law-keepers", "Law-masters", "Law-bringers"

The vehicles that bring Agents of the Law to the scene of a crime are the "Law-bringers". These are lightly-armoured, highly-maneuverable cycles designed for high speed alley chases and highway patrol. There are generally four types of Lawbringer Cycle; one is a base model that most agents start with, and three are upgraded variants assigned to sergeants and captains of the department. The three upgraded variants either have heavier armour, AI navigation systems, or are hovercycles.

I've been working on a design for a cycle. I haven't decided if it's the general cycle, or the AI version (it certainly doesn't look to have heavy armour unless it has some kind of integrated force shield...and it has wheels, so it doesn't quite fit the idea I have in mind for a hovercycle).

Here's what I've got so far.

It still needs a lot more work, but once I've got the shape right, it will be easy to generate imagery by rendering up the cycle in an appropriate scene, then applying the various filters that will give the game imagery it's signature look.

Speaking of which, here's another air of background images I threw together.

Now it's back to uni assignment work, and in a few days I might have some more image updates.

23 March, 2017

Another background image for the Law

This is starting to get closer to what I'm after

Still needs more layers though.I want this to remind me of my trip to Tokyo, massive density, things going everywhere, elevated motorways and mass transit systems, this is meant to be a city for half a billion people to live in...and it needs to look like it. Not only that, it needs to look like the people in charge of town planning have the same level of regard for the general populace as Donald Trump does....and people like that have been in power for decades. This setting is dark, mean, might unclean.

More image experimentation to do.

21 March, 2017

Here are the images

The following images were meant to accompany the previous post.

Here is the raw render of the test buildings

And here, it is after fiddling with it in Photoshop a bit.

Here is the raw version of the Law Agent's badge that I'll probably be going with...

Here it is filtered to look like it is appearing on a low quality vid-screen...

And this version is grittier still, but verging on illegible. Some days I think this is exactly what I'm after, some days I think that this has pushed things too far.

Depicting the Urban Blight

While I've been busy working on university stuff, I've had backup computers rendering collections of buildings that I've made in 3D modelling software.

I think I need more building types to add into the mix...many, many more building types,...because everything is looking a bit too regular at the moment. Sure, there need to be some areas of regimented order, but the setting isn't about that...the setting is about a world contstantly on the brink of anarchy and rioting. There needs to be more chaos.

19 March, 2017

Law Imagery

A few days ago I shared my current work in progress, The Law.

It didn't have any images in it, so it's time to start remedying that situation.

The first images I've started on are the badges of the Agents of the Department of Law. I'm not sure they're quite right yet, but they are close to what I'm after.

The armoured uniform is giving me a few more issues. I'll post those images soon.

17 March, 2017

Crossover Potential

One of the things I liked about the World of Darkness was the specific potential for telling very different stories in the same world. I guess that D&D was doing that for years previously, where you could cross dark stories into any setting by applying the Ravenloft rules to whatever setting you regularly played (or Spelljammer if you wanted pseudo-spacefaring, or Planescape if you wanted something a bit more metaphysical). But the World of Darkness claimed to produce distinctly different urban fantasy horror stories all set in a single rich world that didn't require jumping between worlds or planes to change the tone of each story. In this alley, werewolves were ripping apart a corporate executive who had greenlit a gas-mining exploration plant in a delicate ecosystem, while two alleys over a pair of vampires were delicately settling a blood feud that had been ongoing for centuries (by similarly pounding the crap out of each other).

In theory, you could run alternate weekly games with different sets of protagonists and different genres of story, but the same rotating roster of NPCs. In this vampire game Old Zeke is just a homeless guy who happens to have useful information about the local city blocks...in that werewolf game he's actually a kinfolk shaman who doesn't mind the vampires because they serve a role in the local city's ecosystem, and as long as they don't step out of line or become to powerful, he doesn't have to call in his big furry family members to put them back in their place.

It only ever got messy when the two genres actually did come into contact. What takes precedence, extra actions from Rage or Celerity? This power says it works against that attribute, but the other guys don't have that attribute... Every book seemed to have a new way of translating things between games, which worked well in tandem with another book, but contradicted two or three others.

The nWoD tried to remedy this with a core book, then making all of the creature games spin-offs from that basic structure. In that way, I thought it was good (in every other way, I found something to dislike about it... "WHAT NO KITSUNE! I'm outta here" [slams the door] )

My basic point here is that this new project "The Law" is basically very close to the direction I was heading with my earlier project "Familiar". Where one deals with keeping the peace in a crime ridden city, while the other deals with keeping magic alive in a city where the very essence of mysticism is dying. Agents of The Department of Law deal mainly with criminals, their goals are to maintain the peace and ensure the safety of citizens; this is done through investigation, establishing relationships with the local community, and dealing immediate justice when necessary. Familiars deal mainly with mystics and outsiders, their goals are to find artefacts and tomes of magic, containing them when dangerous, and releasing the energies within when the metaphysical balance needs realigning; this is also done through investigation and establishing relationships with the local community, but often needs to be done in a subversive manner to avoid the attention of the authorities.

Both games are about keeping the world in balance, one maintaning a balance of law, the other maintaining a balance of magic. Both try to keep dark things from spilling over into public view, but when one is a game about police, and the other could generally be considered a game about heists, it's easy to see how they could come into conflict. It would be just as easy to throw a few other types of games into the mix... perhaps a noir story system about private eyes who live in a grey area between the authorities, the criminals, and the metaphysical outsiders... perhaps my Tom Waits inspired game about gritty and rusted morality, focused on angels in a world where belief is both a cherished treasure and a sign of insidious insanity.

But the aim at the moment is to get one game working right.