Saturday, 19 July 2014

Homo Mensura: Thoughts on the new Human Male Models

Not so long ago, we finally got a good look at the new human male model. Unlike the other models that might have been impressive, I tend to think that all need to be compared to the human models. This is because when we see human models, we see all the good, the bad, and the ugly without having our thoughts diluted by the models being something else than human. When we see a human model, and his wrists are not ok, we can safely say that something is wrong with the model. When you see the same discrepancy on the orc, tauren or draenei, you might even attribute it to the design of each race. Which is ludicrous.

That is not to say there is anything wrong with the wrists of the human male model. Quite on the contrary, the whole body seems to be according to the proportions, and is altogether a great improvement over the old models. Some might complain over the face, but the fact remains that humans have various beard option in order to use them, not to complain about that lower lip nobody would ever see if they used facial hair to cover it up.

The new model is a huge improvement in my opinion. Granted, he still has arms that would make pause even a polar bear, but the muscular bodies were a silent trademark of pretty much every game Blizzard ever made in recent years. What is better though, is that the musculature looks more fitting now. It is not just some idealised form taken from a statue any more. It is more humane, and if we should stretch it a bit, more realistic. I still want different body types though...

Human models are so important because all the armours are first fitted for them. If that is not true, please explain why every damned armour looks good on the human, while  I can stand on my head if I want, and the pauldrons on the male blood elf will still hover above him, and the joints of the Forsaken will still penetrate their new shiny armour. I would really love to hear the explanation. And if you dare say artistic direction, you have my permission to slap yourself. Hard.

There is not much else to say about the new model. There is the issue of sameface phenomena that is currently plaguing the beta, but the devs are promising it will go away once they implement all the new faces. Which begs the question, why did they release half finished models into a beta in the first place? I still think the easy way of running with the hare and hunting with the hounds would be to present at the start of the expansion a somewhat limited free character recustomization. I have written about it before. This would allow people to find their "own" look in their character, while preventing people to abuse it in order to race change or something like that.

Another thing it would do, is generate some goodwill for Blizzard, and God knows they need it at this point. Because let us face it, Blizzard is not remaking the old models out of the goodness of their heart and their love for us. They are remaking them because it is good for them. Not remaking the models would hurt their profits. And it is quite apparent this is all Blizzard is after these days. So they better do a good job with retrofitting the old models, because if they manage to piss of the majority of their playerbase by changing the look of their characters to something entirely else, that could turn out to be the real killing blow.

I am still hoping these problems will be resolved when the remaining races have their turn with the new models. They should really try and resolve all the possible armour, weapon, and cloak clipping that is taking place. Maybe take another look at the angle the weapons are sheathed at the waist. Why are they under 45 degree angle and not vertical is question that boggles my mind. It would really be shameful of them if they only improved the visual quality of the new models, but did not resolve the issues that gnaw the old models for almost ten years now. In some cases a bit less.

#WoW #NewModels #WarlordsOfDraenor

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