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“It is hard to overestimate the impact of Joan of Arc on the French psyche. Her life and mission, to the French, was a Divine affirmation of France’s role in the economy of salvation. She ‘sealed the deal’ and the French will never let that go - nor should they. We can talk about how she 'saved’ France. But we could discuss many who 'saved’ France over the centuries. Joan, however, 'saved’ the heart and soul of France - the essence of what France is in the mind of God. That is something that only Joan did. To the French she is more than a great saint or a great Frenchwoman. She is the soul and spirit of France.” ~Walter Adams

Art: Joan of Arc by Harold H. Piffard.

Dev Blog: Building Larger Worlds with More Fidelity 

Brenoch Adams, Art Director 

[Leading into the launch of Rise of the Tomb Raider, we’ll feature a variety of developer blogs that lift the curtain on the creation of Lara’s first great tomb raiding expedition.]

The world in Rise of the Tomb Raider is larger and more diverse than we’ve ever built. We set out to achieve spaces that were rich with exploration, and offered variety in terms of look and experience. The fidelity of the world was driven by the research put into every aspect of the design. Advancements in lighting, materials, and post processing allowed us to achieve a compelling aesthetic that brought the hostile atmosphere to life.

Larger spaces come with the inherent issue of making sure they do not become difficult to navigate, but remain exciting when discovering new sections of the map. Layers of history including Byzantine, Soviet, and Mongolian era materials became compelling visual storytelling elements that help lead players from one destination to the next.  

We quickly referred to larger spaces in terms of neighborhoods. Internally, one of the favorites was named ‘chicken village’ because it’s populated by, you guessed it, lots of chickens. All chickens aside, we spent a lot of time making sure the community who resides in Chicken village and the surrounding area had depth to their culture. (Chicken Village was renamed after we realized it was a ridiculous name for the area.)

The day to day activities of the locals were important to display to players, making the group appear motivated and believable. Agriculture, hunting, and the community interaction are just as important as the materials used to cook or house the people who inhabit the area.

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