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GDC 2016 Character Design Video and Related Concept Art
BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#1 Posted: 00:54:20 15/09/2019 | Topic Creator
https://gdcvault.com/play/1023...f-Character-and

I got curious and followed up on the GDC 2016 presentation. I'm not sure if this has been posted in video form.
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fox on the run
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 20:30:41 16/09/2019 by BlueFox
ThunderEgg Blue Sparx Gems: 747
#2 Posted: 01:02:04 15/09/2019
ooh there's some interesting unused characters in here!

makin me miss skylanders
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BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#3 Posted: 01:35:04 15/09/2019 | Topic Creator
https://www.gdcvault.com/play/...er-s-Cinematics

There’s also a few interesting pieces of artwork in here.
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fox on the run
ThunderEgg Blue Sparx Gems: 747
#4 Posted: 01:56:46 15/09/2019
Woah how are you finding all of these?!
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BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#5 Posted: 02:05:27 15/09/2019 | Topic Creator
Quote: ThunderEgg
Woah how are you finding all of these?!



They're all in the GDC Vault. There's a lot of content there. I really miss the art direction of these games... The landscapes were dreamy, and where else are you going to find a boxing vampire and a helicopter dinosaur? Wish there was more information on Lorne Balfe's score. I listen to the soundtracks quite a bit.
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fox on the run
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 11:35:59 15/09/2019 by BlueFox
ThunderEgg Blue Sparx Gems: 747
#6 Posted: 02:25:21 15/09/2019
Ahh. I have a feeling I'm going to be exploring that site, then!

You're right; they did have a ton of unique character ideas, and interesting art direction.
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Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#7 Posted: 11:22:43 15/09/2019
This is great! Before we only had the individual slides and they didn't make much sense without context.
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I do art!
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BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#8 Posted: 11:33:20 15/09/2019 | Topic Creator
This also means someone out in the world owns the 3D print of the gargoyle character. The speaker said something like they’d post the figure to the official Vicarious Visions Facebook, but I briefly skimmed it and didn’t see anything.

If you’re looking for more, you can see some character designs in the preview images of one of the Ebay listings for Clutch. The water gargoyle and yarn monster are there, as well as new faces. It’s not a lot, but it’s cool to see.

I just found these, too. From Jeff Bellio's blog: https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ApC...echSuits_05.jpg
https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-zoq..._TreeRex_01.jpg
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fox on the run
Edited 2 times - Last edited at 00:39:34 16/09/2019 by BlueFox
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#9 Posted: 02:15:33 16/09/2019
Seems like that first one was an early EARLY Tech/Water Giant. Kinda like Tree Rex with a skirt but it'd probably be a nightmare to put on a figure...
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I do art!
IF YOU HAVE TO ASK, IT'S TOO LATE
BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#10 Posted: 14:17:53 16/09/2019 | Topic Creator
Quote: Bifrost
Seems like that first one was an early EARLY Tech/Water Giant. Kinda like Tree Rex with a skirt but it'd probably be a nightmare to put on a figure...


I think it’s more Swap Force or Superchargers related, since “Nova” and “SuperNova” are code names I’ve seen repeated throughout the early development stage of both games. Definitely on Vicarious Visions’ end and not for the DS games. It’d be cool if it was a Giant, but it’s probably a scrapped enemy or something. As for the Tree Rex concept, I’ve got no clue.

But look at this! We could’ve had a chameleon!

[User Posted Image]
[User Posted Image]
I really recommend you all seek out these visual artists, because their portfolios often have goodies inside them. There’s even a spin-around model of one of the early Swappers (like Aftershock and Krayken) on Artstation.
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fox on the run
Edited 3 times - Last edited at 20:27:20 16/09/2019 by BlueFox
ThunderEgg Blue Sparx Gems: 747
#11 Posted: 14:41:10 17/09/2019
Ohoho these guys are kinda cute!

[User Posted Image]
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BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#12 Posted: 15:34:34 17/09/2019 | Topic Creator
Jeff Murchie and Dave E. Phillips have both been given the okay on several pieces of artwork. I haven’t seen much from I-Wei Huang, however. Cursed NDAs. In any case, taking a quick look at the series’ art department can give you a couple of new artists to look into.
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fox on the run
Drawdler Gold Sparx Gems: 2889
#13 Posted: 16:07:07 17/09/2019
Anything come out for SA? I feel like a lot of art for that game must just be lost otherwise, or whoever has it thinks nobody is interested or stuff (but it's still the best one)

I guess now was a good time to miss having any Skylanders community huh, no good fansites rn, wanted to look at older forums on here, it's weird to see you post again Fox, goodbuye again tho lol

Now please someone just compile artists' links, historic information of this series is either so barren or so poorly-sorted. I heard of an interesting pointer for Trap Team development which is now just lost because the EWK thread on this site was deleted. I'm so tired of seeing this stuff for this series, it's not that old and was commercially successful, but still we have lost media, and poor sorting of sources does not help guz

Everyone cross fingers for SA art for me if you want pls
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Quote: dark52
Error: You
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#14 Posted: 16:08:49 17/09/2019
Swap Force was being made before SSA was even out! No wonder the games clash so much. Activision really can be horrible considering they indeed were counting on all their eggs before they hatched and fully planning yearly releases from the start.
Finally had time to sit down and watch it all. For better or worse, this does explain VV's... More polarizing art direction. I never didn't like Dave's art but when they literally have to be running 24/7 alongside TFB who are probably crunching, no wonder the art and the variety isn't consistent.

And damn, I forgot we lost the pictures from this GDC. I know the samurai skeleton from memory(she was basically colored like Grim Creeper), but we never got a picture of the gargoyle's final toy.
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I do art!
IF YOU HAVE TO ASK, IT'S TOO LATE
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 16:11:17 17/09/2019 by Bifrost
BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#15 Posted: 16:19:25 17/09/2019 | Topic Creator
Quote: Drawdler
Anything come out for SA? I feel like a lot of art for that game must just be lost otherwise, or whoever has it thinks nobody is interested or stuff (but it's still the best one)

I guess now was a good time to miss having any Skylanders community huh, no good fansites rn, wanted to look at older forums on here, it's weird to see you post again Fox, goodbuye again tho lol


Hi, Drawdler! Yeah, I know lol. I was just feeling nostalgic, then I wound up discovering a handful of Vicarious Visions development art. Would love to chat with you again. Yeah, this community isn’t really around anymore. I’m not really into the looks of Ring of Heroes and hated Academy, so I’m only held on by the unlikely chance something else comes up about Skylanders, whether it be new or old behind-the-scenes content.

Not much on Spyro’s Adventure. I-Wei has a few old Kaos concepts on his blog, but I believe that was shared already. I’d love if all the games got art books...and that the art books weren’t for employees only. Wish you luck on uncovering SA art.

Quote: Bifrost
Swap Force was being made before SSA was even out! No wonder the games clash so much. Activision really can be horrible considering they indeed were counting on all their eggs before they hatched and fully planning yearly releases from the start.
Finally had time to sit down and watch it all. For better or worse, this does explain VV's... More polarizing art direction. I never didn't like Dave's art but when they literally have to be running 24/7 alongside TFB who are probably crunching, no wonder the art and the variety isn't consistent.

And damn, I forgot we lost the pictures from this GDC. I know the samurai skeleton from memory(she was basically colored like Grim Creeper), but we never got a picture of the gargoyle's final toy.


We have the Frankenstein girl; you can find her with a quick google search of "Darkspyro GDC". I don't remember much else from the presentation. They had art books out for view and some Riptide and Spitfire prototypes, but I'm unsure about other characters. Poor Water Gargoyle. Out there all alone.
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fox on the run
Edited 2 times - Last edited at 16:33:31 17/09/2019 by BlueFox
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#16 Posted: 16:38:39 17/09/2019
The frankenstein was from screenshots I managed to save, yeah, but the samurai is just gone. I think I was able to see the instagram one and then it just disappeared by the time I came back to save it.

Also watching the animation bootcamp one, there's a LOT of unreleased artworks for Superchargers, including bosses and Hugo with his hoodie up. Wonder if there's a way to get just the slides from this video like we did with the other one...?

Also on Ring of Heroes, considering the high quality of the concept art we've seen already, HOPEFULLY that surfaces somewhere because they said on stream many times they want to release their own characters. I don't have time to learn basic korean or browse their version of Artstation, if there even is one...
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I do art!
IF YOU HAVE TO ASK, IT'S TOO LATE
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 16:40:31 17/09/2019 by Bifrost
BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#17 Posted: 16:48:12 17/09/2019 | Topic Creator
Yeah, I heard about new Skylanders. That, Malefor, and more episode dungeons are something I'm looking forward to.


I'll take a look around and see if I can scrounge up a finished Ghost Samurai. Maybe it's buried on Twitter somewhere. As for slides, it doesn't look like that's an option available at the moment. Maybe in the future? I didn't think a video version of the Character Design panel would ever come.

Ta-da! https://twitter.com/humbleblee...548786091667457 Buried on Twitter. Thanks Dave!
It's all coming back to me now. I forgot about them. https://twitter.com/humbleblee...510159726927872

The GDC-landers have been found. I think?
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fox on the run
Edited 4 times - Last edited at 17:00:57 17/09/2019 by BlueFox
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#18 Posted: 17:24:32 17/09/2019
Yeah, just the gargoyle missing, but since they printed it afterwards and sent it as a giveaway who knows if that ever got anywhere.

At least we've found the samurai again! To think she'd probably be in 7 since they wouldn't waste that kind of work... But that's just making ourselves sad, I'd rather stash this away for art reference(and put it on the wiki if I ever get the patience again to play with MultiUpload) instead of moping that it didn't get used.
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I do art!
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BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#19 Posted: 18:10:25 17/09/2019 | Topic Creator
Bringing this back. https://imgur.com/a/pmuPq
Also this is something Vicarious Visions does often apparently. They had another art show in 2016 called Unrestricted. No images from that one. Still can't get over those characters found in the Crash Bandicoot remasters. Template Template lives on.
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fox on the run
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 18:11:45 17/09/2019 by BlueFox
Drawdler Gold Sparx Gems: 2889
#20 Posted: 18:41:13 17/09/2019
I'll send you a PM with my Discord name Fox and it's mutual. (Although, I'm not hard to find at all. I just don't know how searching for people on Discord works, so I don't know how many "Drawdler"s are there, or if you could just type that in and look at anyone using that name.)

Play Skylanders again nonce, if you didn't sell yours. I never moved on from that, I look for tons in SA. TT still gets me. SC was fun but not replayable, way too much in the way of the little good parts and not enough gets going. SG is okay I'd just rather play others. Didn't really play the others recent enough. I dread going back to SF and being unable to use my boy Shroomboom because he's gonna crash the game if I do. :(
It's not related but when I see Green Stars in SMG2 and the borders are that shade of green... I wince because it's the exact same color as the "green screen of death" from SWAP Force.

Funny thing is looking at this topic I think I've seen every one of the VV pieces you bought into the topic because most, if not all, of them were in Clutch. (Other than the Twitter ones. They aren't loading for me at all so I have no idea.) I feel kind of royal when this stuff pops up and I'm like "seen it" although I didn't watch the videos yet and they'll probably have a lot that wasn't in Clutch I assume.

I did see Wei's post with the realistic Kaos too. It's really a shame TFB never posted much environmental concepts as far as I know. Most of their pieces that are out there seem to be character art, and there are a few people on Artstation who have posted screenshots of stuff they worked on but like not drawn concept art or anything scrapped that I stumbled upon.

Also, imagine ever finding Universe concepts.

Now I mentioned this in a far-off, way angrier and way longer post, but I actually prefer how SF looks these days compared to SC, still not the TFB games. TFB games totally eclipse that for me, but SC felt more like a muddled medium between the two and still had way too much shininess and dumb ****. I'm not saying it's bad, but I like SF better than SC because it has a more concise vision. All the softness in it feels like a lightly illustrated storybook or something and pieces of the coloring are amazing (better than SC's, loser to the mixing and variety in say PSX Spyro). Of course though, SF also has grating issues, and it isn't consistently good like that, I mean I don't prefer the older aesthetic for nothin'.


@Bifrost ofc I don't know if the videos mentioned it, but in case they didn't, I remember hearing once- might have been in Strata itself- VV got to do SWAP Force because Activision were really impressed with their 3DS game. If I'm remembering that right and it was true, then it's pretty funny that Activision already saw, before it finished, that SA 3DS was gonna be good. I still hold that game is better than some of the console entries, it's just a shame it's so small.
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Quote: dark52
Error: You
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 18:46:44 17/09/2019 by Drawdler
BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#21 Posted: 19:07:10 17/09/2019 | Topic Creator
Quote: Drawdler

Play Skylanders again nonce, if you didn't sell yours. I never moved on from that, I look for tons in SA. TT still gets me. SC was fun but not replayable, way too much in the way of the little good parts and not enough gets going. SG is okay I'd just rather play others. Didn't really play the others recent enough. I dread going back to SF and being unable to use my boy Shroomboom because he's gonna crash the game if I do. smilie


I guess I'm making a Discord then! I need a Steam account, too. You kids and your newfangled social medias and internets. smilie

Funnily enough, it wasn't the Skylanders I gave away, but the consoles(the receivers didn't want the games). Except for the handhelds, which I use to catch Pokémon or fail at Monster Hunter every once in a while. Not much of a gamer. Still have all my Skylanders though. You have Clutch? I was considering buying it, but a lot of art finds its way on the internet. I figured I'd save the money. Strata's enough to satiate this drought.
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fox on the run
Edited 3 times - Last edited at 19:22:29 17/09/2019 by BlueFox
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#22 Posted: 20:28:19 17/09/2019
Template Template is straight up on the storyboards on the second video(easy to tell because they have no ears but have a tail) - someone at VV really likes that guy, and I hope at least that little shard of Skylanders gets to live on. I think all info on 7 is going to be undiscovered for a long time, though, if ever, unless more gets leaked. The NDAs for Legend of Spyro STILL haven't expired, despite the writers and producers' willingness to participate in interviews.
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I do art!
IF YOU HAVE TO ASK, IT'S TOO LATE
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 20:28:38 17/09/2019 by Bifrost
BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#23 Posted: 00:28:00 18/09/2019 | Topic Creator
Those NDAs are troublesome. That’s incredible that the Legend of Spyro series hasn’t got free of them. Hoping some more Sky 7 game data gets revealed somehow.

On SA, have these been seen already? https://www.beautiful-danger.net/new-page http://joedraws.com/?p=924

Looking back at first link. I guess this means Light and Dark elements were planned from the start. They used the word "minion" instead of "Skylander." There's also some new and repurposed characters. This is so bizarre to see, but in a good way.
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fox on the run
Edited 3 times - Last edited at 01:28:51 18/09/2019 by BlueFox
Drawdler Gold Sparx Gems: 2889
#24 Posted: 07:24:29 18/09/2019
I'm not really active on either rn or anywhere really? I check DeviantArt and I post some Skylanders clips on YouTube, that's really it. I don't really talk to anyone these days, lotta **** happened this year and I closed myself off. I'm struggling to check into friends sometimes in the last couple months, and I've posted a few blogs but nothing much.

If you can get one, Wiis are stupid cheap, and at least the first game works really well there. Giants is sloppier, but still fine. And I hear the other two ports it got were bad but I never got to play them (and wish I hadn't traded them in). Play CTGP with me too.

I didn't see that SA stuff. It's pretty funny but that really makes it awesome. Also cool to see Slobbering Mutticus. I knew the first game really had a more monstery (I dare say even adult) feel from the rest and you honestly can even see it in that art. I mean, they listed Mutticus as playable there, shows they were more willing to experiment with freakier and meaner "heroes". I would love to see that brain monster at its full size...
The second link didn't actually send me to relevant art. Blaeh

A few things about SA:
  1. Giants has "99_Debug_Minion" (you might have heard about it on TCRF) hidden in the character folder- and I might be misremembering, but I think .arcs have strings of legible text mentioning "minions"- so Skylanders were definitely called minions as a placeholder. (SA either had debug boy scrubbed, or placed in folders I can't access, I only have a very basic look at those folders. Or I just missed it.)
  2. Given that one mabu calls them "Champions", they were definitely called that at some point.
  3. Re Light and Dark: don't forget the Falling Forest story scroll.
  4. I realised the other day that the HD versions MUST have been worked off an earlier build and here is simply why- other than obvious **** like the drumsticks and many more bugs, and TFB having focused on the Wii game- they still prominently use a gold-collecting sound effect that you can also see in early footage and early character trailers for SA, but those had Wii graphics IIRC. Suggesting that SFX- which ended up all over the HD version- was SUPPOSED to be a placeholder, or was just changed late (and I'm glad it was changed, that older noise got grating). Anyway, with that said, we can assume that the weird design of Lair of Kaos in those ports was an old version of the level (and thank god they scrapped it), and that some balance differences between the versions are because of old build stuff, rather than serious intended changes. I guess the HD versions give us a little peek then.
  5. Fun thing: the model of that red dragon is still in at least Giants. It's used with either Debug_Minion, or the scrapped Buckshot (sniper troll, not the goat- I don't remember which of those two used the dragon model though), and for some reason appears on their stat screen rather than those characters' normal models. If you check out how derpy it looks ingame, while the model is definitely unfinished, it's easy to see why it was scrapped.
  6. There are old prototypes of Spyro's toy that use the red dragon design as their mold. They got far along enough that there's a mockup or perhaps actual prototype of that mold with Legendary Spyro's palette. (It's a stock-image type thing that was on the original website, so dunno if Legendary was still hanging onto the design long enough for it to be prototyped or again it's merely some mockup. But that red dragon mold Spyro toy definitely physically exists, it's not hard to find images of it. Generic rocky base and all.)
  7. A long time ago I heard Activision said "hey put Spyro or Crash into your new IP" and Skylanders was supposed to be an unrelated pitch but I don't know how reliable that is. Might lend credence to the idea that they just had to retrofit red dragon's design into being Spyro's design. I've heard whisperings about a "red Spyro" but I don't even remember what they were actually about anymore and if TFB really wanted to make him red. Thank goodness they didn't.
  8. SA's level folder lists one of the mine levels first so it's nice to see, indeed, they were putting that one down pretty early. Lends credence to them just being listed in development order, even roughly.
  9. This is personal, but I always had the theory that something about the Undead levels and LLR was really similar. But like, something eerie and unintentional. So would you look at that, there was meant to be an Undead Volcano very long ago and they shuffled that stuff for thematic transitions. Knowing this now, I guess those fire pits in Crawling Catacombs make a lot more sense. I mean, they were always cool. And Crypt also has the fire pits. But now this is like a big "ooooohhhhh" moment- I thought those fire pits were just them going with something that looked cool. (Sudden realisation that you could take those firey assets as a nod towards crematoriums. smilie)
  10. Maybe undead volcano was supposed to be a nod to the well of souls like big undead mountain. Probably not. Probably just going with cool stuff/hell theme/whatever.

Now, it's really interesting that Wrecking Ball has the Water logo there and here is why: we know there's a prototype toy of him with a whirlwind as the base, suggesting that after that, he was moved to Air, before finally Magic. That isn't where it ends, though. If you look at Warnado's .arc in the SA files- just in Notepad- you can see legible text at the bottom of file directories for voice acting and they call him "Water Dragon". So this suggests not only some relation between Warnado and Zap, obviously (at least Zap being used as something to build off of), but- I think the whirlwind base and WB's stubbiness and speedy nature might have inspired Warnado- so maybe Zap, Warnado and Wrecking Ball, of all trios, may be related and have had ideas branch off and morph into eachothers' designs. Or maybe that text doesn't mean anything in that case, or Zap was used as a base purely for gameplay stuff and his design is completely unrelated to Warnado (I know about Tarclops ofc), or the connections I made between WB and Warnado are just a coincidence.

Reminder that Stealth Elf had eyes at one point. https://zisforzeirah.files.wor...ealth-elf-4.jpg

I guess someone might be able to go through this and maybe it will have nuggets of concept art or names or leads from before the game was actually Skylanders or whatever. http://forum.darkspyro.net/spy...php?topic=33926 Thank god that post is not deleted.

Come to think of it, maybe the Universe assets were just working off of scrapped SA concepts rather than getting much dedicated concept art. Who knows. Universe is probably lost media forever.

Finally, SF/Template Template: I might be misremembering, but I'm pretty sure he's in Strata as one of the earliest concepts, just messing with what limbs they could break off and such. I SWEAR he's in Strata (there are storyboard there- but I mean in more than that). Just too lazy to check.
I don't think it's "someone liked the guy" so much as "they were really excited to start and tried making an actual character even with their placeholder". But couldn't blame them for growing fond of that placeholder anyway. I'm fond of it.
I'll post here again whenever I actually look at Strata and maybe Clutch to correct anything here.
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Quote: dark52
Error: You
Edited 7 times - Last edited at 07:55:43 18/09/2019 by Drawdler
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#25 Posted: 15:38:39 18/09/2019
TFB's first GDC confirmed Spyro and Skylanders were always one single pitch. This new link Bluefox found makes it seem like they initially went with a Spyro game with extra playable characters, then a game with Spyro as the mentor(still LOS design in that pitch), then Spyro as playable replacing Flavius(Flame Dragon).
Slobbering Mutticus as a Skylander is really weird, but makes sense.

The Template Template sketches are on the GDC video, along with a dragon version of them. The dev said VV was using them at the very earliest stage, and made Krayken, Aftershock and Unnamed Air soon after to pitch the game. Not much reason to use him in Superchargers storyboards if they didn't find them amusing.
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I do art!
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Edited 1 time - Last edited at 15:39:11 18/09/2019 by Bifrost
BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#26 Posted: 23:45:45 18/09/2019 | Topic Creator
Scroll and there's miscellaneous Skylanders concept art. I like that Rattle Snake Jake from Rango is in the Wild West scene. Or Rattle Shake's gotten a lot more intimidating since I last saw him. Maybe it's a new haircut. I'm pretty confident that one Academy image has been passed around for a while. Imaginators was a big blur to me, and I'm not too familiar with development of Giants, so I don't know if this content is all too intriguing. Was going to post something from Universe, then learned that it wasn't new at all. I was very confused by that dragonbunny...

@Drawdler. I've got one up and running. I don't think there's a way to search for users? I'm totally new to this so I could be wrong, but I didn't find anything, and I'm absolutely terrified of potentially sending a friend request to the wrong person lol.
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fox on the run
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 00:12:17 19/09/2019 by BlueFox
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#27 Posted: 01:03:49 19/09/2019
It's got a bunch of scrapped levels and a Battle Arena, which surprises no one since at least 5 Imaginators levels were just trashed halfway through. Pretty neat artwork for existing things though!

Dragonbunnies were the only thing left from the old Universe development - apparently there were supposed to be critters for every element and a story mode-like dungeon.
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I do art!
IF YOU HAVE TO ASK, IT'S TOO LATE
BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#28 Posted: 15:38:55 19/09/2019 | Topic Creator
It's funny looking back on my initial reaction to those Universe models. Gasped and everything. I had no clue what those things were. I mean, if a flying demon skull with an exposed brain was considered to be a Skylander, why can't a small Spyro-lagomorph be one?

Getting real scarce. I'm mostly just seeing fanart and Reignited concepts. And art university assignments. These students were tasked with making a character that'd fit into the style of the games, which is very cool. I still have no idea how I found those Spyro's Kingdom pitches, really shocked by that. The Slobbering Mutticus is one of my favorite designs from these games, so grotesquely beautiful. I'm unsure if I would've liked it as a Skylander, however. I'll look through Strata sometime soon and see if there's crew members with potential leads. Going to stop searching for now. Have some parting gifts: Clearer image of a different Star Strike design. Level designs.
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fox on the run
Edited 3 times - Last edited at 16:04:44 19/09/2019 by BlueFox
ThunderEgg Blue Sparx Gems: 747
#29 Posted: 17:17:53 19/09/2019
[User Posted Image]

Now this image is REALLY interesting. It's from Michael Ebert's blog (https://www.beautiful-danger.net/new-page) that was linked above. Here are my observations:

- I guess Light and Dark elements were initially planned to be in SSA. They've made reference to the Shadow Realm, which could be related to the Shadow Realm in Spyro Shadow Legacy
- There's art of Fire Dragon AND Spyro. I guess they were separately present at some point. I wonder how they're related? Maybe Fire Dragon became Flavius..?
- Speaking of Spyro, he looks more like his TLOS version.
- Near the middle of the map, there's a place called "Hunter's Camp". Maybe they planned to have Hunter the Cheetah in SSA?
- "Mushroom Giants" (upper right) seems to take inspiration from TLOS
- "Giant's Folly". I can see they were thinking about giants even at this point in early development.
- There's a ton of unused characters and places in general!

EDIT: Also they seem to refer to Skylanders as "Minions" still.
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I AM ETERNAL!
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 17:19:39 19/09/2019 by ThunderEgg
Drawdler Gold Sparx Gems: 2889
#30 Posted: 20:22:18 19/09/2019
Oh Bifrost I never saw that! Can you post that link here too? I'm glad to have the pithc confusion finally cleared up even though I was wrong :p

maybe the superchargers storyboards were just scrapped from sf xd

ThunderEgg: I missed most of all the little text so actually I missed all those lul

TT art: That palette + scale are so much nicer than the final one :( As much as I like the concept, and while I guess it's what they were going for, I always found Telescope Towers just garish and along with the game design feeling unfinished just made it one of my least favorite levels in that game. I wish we got something that felt like that instead! But it's TT we're talking about...

I'll just message you later BlueFox, I don't really know either, but I'm actually not on Discord a ton lately, or the last few months, so I might not be able to talk that much, anyway,

Bifrost: I knew about the dragonbunnies but
SA+SG files refer to sidekicks/minis as "pets". Like man maybe at some point they wanted to refit those critters into being the sidekicks instead. They look like pets, and there are the little penguins.

However sidekicks probably would have come later in development (to no surprise) as they actually have "TriggerHappy" "Terrafin" etc. in their name, where Trigger Happy and Terrafin do not (I don't remember Terrafin's placeholder, but Trigger Happy's was GoldenCheat; Gill Grunt is one of very few characters whose files have his final name, so maybe they were settled on him being a starter character a lot sooner than TH, or something).

More interestingly, none of the magic items are named "Sparx" (where Spyro and Cynder's files are named Spyro and Cynder) suggesting he wasn't one of their initial ideas for one. Maybe he was going to be an NPC instead at some point (probably in the mushroom area grew up in the swamp you know).

I also had a little look through the files and while I can't confirm this, so you should take it as rumor, they suggest that UndeadVolcano was actually used as the skeleton for one of the Magic levels rather than LLR as I expected, because Weapon Master's voicelines are referred to in there. Also, there's a level that has strings mentioning sound files of both Life and Undead gates but I don't think that SA has a level with both of those? Again I really can't look indepth. This is only what I can see in Notepad because too lazy + inexperienced to do more. Before someone asks, I can't see any unused levels listed I thiink. Maybe in Giants.

remember when someone sold s1 cynder for $300
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Quote: dark52
Error: You
Edited 2 times - Last edited at 20:30:44 19/09/2019 by Drawdler
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#31 Posted: 21:46:41 19/09/2019
Here it is, Drawdler!

http://www.etienne-badia.com/skylanders

As for the levels, the portfolio said SSA was planned to have 35 levels, so it was probably among those. They said that game layout was the very earliest so it probably doesn't indicate much other than the volcano's theme.
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Drawdler Gold Sparx Gems: 2889
#32 Posted: 04:54:09 20/09/2019
I didn't get to any of your replies yet sorry if you had something to say to me. Gonna go out rn

The Necropolis seems to be listed as CyndersExp[ansion] in the first two games so maybe TFB wanted Cynder to be packaged with Darklight Crypt. I don't know if that was mentioned in TCRF, but I'm going to share it now because I think this information is relatively interesting.

I normally wouldn't pop in to post something so small but it is just great to see some interest in concept art etc. and I mostly wanted to post it before I forget.

Three of the Giants levels outright have no placeholder name left in their filename, so they're just like "Level_201", etc., so no info of placeholder names on Rumbletown, or Molekin Mountain, or Troll Home Security, I think. I checked the list of Giants levels, and there doesn't seem to be a debug level in there, same as SA, it's scrubbed or buried elsewhere, or something.

... Drill-X's Big Rig seems to have been codenamed "The Machine" so I can self-project about one of the devs also being a Floyd fan and joke "welcome to the machine" lul lul. :'D

Giants Sidekicks could have been planned earlier in the game's development than the SA ones were in SA's development because the Sidekicks of Thumpback, Ninjini and Eye-Brawl still include placeholder "Whale", "Djinni" and "UndeadGiant" in their file names.
However- Eye-Brawl's file, himself, is called Mummy instead. I think that information was already on TCRF but I thought it's kind of interesting that doesn't match up with the Mini just being called UndeadGiant. Eye-Brawl started out as proto-ass Krypt King so I guess that Krypt King was called Mummy as a placeholder I guess? I swear I heard that ages ago, I think.
Barkley is called "Item_Pet04_TreeRex" too, despite Tree Rex still being called "TitanLife" in the game files, so maybe those placeholder names just mean nothing honestly, or they just decided on making Sidekicks of some of the Giants really early, and others kept stewing for longer.

Also, Bouncer is RobotGiant, Swarm is BugmanGiant; some Giants don't have "Giant" or "Titan" in their filename, but maybe Bouncer and Swarm were some of the later-developed Giants, seeing as they have, you know, "Giant" instead of "Titan" in their filenames.

I dug around a tad more and there's legible text in the .arcs saying "champion" so Skylanders are referred to as champions sometimes even there. The name certainly stuck a while. Too long. I think we can assume that they must have been called "champions" later in development than they were being called "minions" too.

There's some files called "CardGame_Deck_xxx" (xxx being numbers) but those numbers go from 000-081- which makes 82 cards? And yes, I checked, and this time, none of those numbers were skipped. Thing is, I remember there being just 81 cards in the game, the 80 you can obtain plus Bark Demon.
I think this could mean two things, but the first thing is much much more likely. A) the extra file could just be for the broken Skystone, or B) one of them is a completely scrapped Skystone.
Now all of those are .bld files and every .bld I have checked has no legible text left in the file so I'm not checking them to see if they have specific names for anything, so I don't know anything about those files other than this.

I also saw one single line in Hot Dog's file that called him "Fire Dog"; his overall file/placeholder name is "FireFeet", so maybe he didn't even start as a dog, and that single line came about after they settled on that idea... or maybe it was just an error.

Some of this might be stuff you all just know from TCRF but I still think the recap wouldn't really hurt anyone and idc, it's honestly fun to just see it there myself, and then share it, instead of just TCRFing; it feels like a new discovery, though it's really not
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Quote: dark52
Error: You
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 04:59:45 20/09/2019 by Drawdler
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#33 Posted: 13:39:19 20/09/2019
Drill-X didn't exist in the Alpha version of the game, we know this because of the Alpha Giants video - it was just a random machine that Kaos had. Iirc Card 81 is Amazibarrel which is a placeholder.



I recommend anyone who likes Giants a little bit watch this to the end - all the snarky placeholder dialogue, the Text-to-Speech lines, unfinished cutscenes and everything else are hilarious.
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Edited 2 times - Last edited at 13:40:43 20/09/2019 by Bifrost
BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#34 Posted: 17:15:17 20/09/2019 | Topic Creator
https://jasonpickthall.wixsite...taItem-j5s30jxd
https://jasonpickthall.wixsite...aItem-j5s30jxd1
Does anyone know what these were meant for? It says Swap Force, but vehicles definitely weren’t a thing. I originally thought it was fan art. Pickthall’s description says “Skylanders Pitch Material”; he’s worked on the series before. I’m thinking it’s Battlecast related. Forgive me if there’s something else explaining this on the website. I’m on mobile at the minute and phone’s a bit buggy. I said I was going to stop looking, but I’m just too curious...
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fox on the run
Edited 4 times - Last edited at 17:34:25 20/09/2019 by BlueFox
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#35 Posted: 17:59:05 20/09/2019
He did some cards for battlecast yeah, but these aren't done in the same style. Maybe they were merch toys or Magic Items that got scrapped?
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BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#36 Posted: 05:11:26 21/09/2019 | Topic Creator
http://laurieannfranks.com/

There are some Skylander pieces in here under “Concept/Illustration”. The one that immediately caught my eye were for Giants. Apparently we were going to get cute domestic critters! That would’ve been fun. I don’t know if they’re just for atmosphere or if you could actually meet them. Swap Force at one point considered something similar with the fauna of Cloudbreak—Skylanders could bond and interact with them. Something like that, I think. I’ll get the actual description in the morning.
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fox on the run
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 05:13:34 21/09/2019 by BlueFox
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#37 Posted: 12:14:14 21/09/2019
I remember seeing those in Artstation, except the critters! It seems they tried twice to push Chum Cannery as a level and it never got off the ground despite having half a level modeled, a shame.
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BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#38 Posted: 12:56:40 21/09/2019 | Topic Creator
I love that buffalo wings pun. Very cute. Give the Skylanders some pets! From the posts above about dragonbunnies and proto-Sidekicks, it seems like this idea has been looked at many times. Wow, so there was a chapter about stopping a company from turning Gillmen into chum? That's...very interesting. There's strange relationships in Skylands, because there are also dragon hunters, wizards who steal griffin eggs, and unicorn poachers.

Looking at Strata right now. Template Template is an absolute champion, the best Skylander. They’re divided up on one page, listing some initial concepts for how the swapping mechanic might work. Head for personality and buff, torso, arms, and tail for combat, legs for speed and jumping. VV was looking at many different ways for the character to break up. (I mentioned this a long time ago, but the cartoonish body horror and viscera in the drawings is very charming) The original Mesmeralda designs are beautiful; she’s got this horrible centipede body and slight mandibles—the later of which makes me cheer because the few insects and arthropods we’ve got in this series usually have super creepy lips and pearly whites. Oh, and that big boat monster I posted? Was for Swap Force.

On the animal thing: “We put a lot of effort into fleshing out the creatures of the world. One of our original gameplay mechanics allowed the player to learn special powers by earning their trust.” - David A. Rodriguez

Oh, and Drawdler, do you recall if there's anything related to Kung Fume Kingdom in Clutch? (Or any other scrapped levels?) You know me, still attached to those body-snatching weirdos. Kinda hard not to be since I dedicated about three years of my life to perpetual rambly brain dumps about them. I found it fun to explain their biology, like as to why Stink Bomb looked like that and not like this. Beyond the fact that nearly everything in Skylands is brachycephalic, he's likely a TMNT reference, and this is a fantasy game of hyper-stylized creatures. "So he's green because he's a walking ecosystem, like a sloth. A-and he actually has nostrils, he can just seal them up like a seal would for swimming!" - BlueFox, 2016. Honestly really helped me think about creature design.
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fox on the run
Edited 5 times - Last edited at 16:01:06 21/09/2019 by BlueFox
HeyitsHotDog Platinum Sparx Gems: 5200
#39 Posted: 18:28:58 21/09/2019
As someone who has Clutch, I don't remember of anything related to Kung Fume Kingdom, but I can check again when I get home.
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BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#40 Posted: 00:04:15 26/09/2019 | Topic Creator
Thanks, HIHD.

Crap, I can’t find this photo of someone modeling Frog Knight. I saw it in an article on Vicarious Visions, but dismissed it as something that was likely seen already or just generally uninteresting. I’m not sure if that means Frog Knight was still being considered for game at the time or it was just for demonstration. I’ll keep looking. It was essentially an over the shoulder snapshot of an artist at a desktop.

In other news, I was reminded of that Game Jam they did. You know, the photos of that “Skylanders 5 leak”.
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Drawdler Gold Sparx Gems: 2889
#41 Posted: 22:47:59 02/10/2019
I've seen the alpha build, but never put aside the time to watch it all. Giants isn't my thing. Idk man, even the leftovers somehow interest me less, and I think it's because the final game feels less finished than others to me, plus it's not one with a super big gimmick hue hue.
I don't know how that ties into what I remember posting, I just remember mentioning the placeholder name. My point about self-projection still stands, and always will unless it's officially deconfirmed :'D It's not like Floyd fans are some rare cult though. I know that.

I found placeholder names for Imaginators characters. They were from 2015. One of them was Tech_Hamster. And one was Dark_Snake. I think it's obvious what those both entail. Nothing else interesting for senseis.
There was also text for creation crystals and in that group was "Creator_Kaos". Not Kaos the sensei. It was explicitly with the crystals.

Sheer speculation time: maybe Kaos was gonna whip up some stuff with his element and actually be a good guy to follow up on SC and he'd send down Kaos element crystals to help.

I'm tired, being on this site bums me out still, that's all I gotta say. There might be more where I found these text strings because really interesting text is legible but it's not stuff I should mention so I'll go now.
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Quote: dark52
Error: You
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#42 Posted: 01:45:47 03/10/2019
I'm not sure what Tech_Hamster would actually mean. Both Senseis are robots.
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Drawdler Gold Sparx Gems: 2889
#43 Posted: 07:04:42 20/10/2019
In the first two games Heroics are listed as "Challenge_Level_[number]"
Trap Team Wii has some stuff. Presumably the villain quests that actually load other levels. Listed as "Challenge_Level_[number]"
The Heroics also ended at 55 in Giants and these start at 56
And there are other files with the same name format as old Heroic files

If you're a fan of it then it might amuse you that one of the levels in TT is codenamed "DOTA" as well, seemingly Operation Rocket Steal.
There's also another level named "The_Machine" again (seemingly The Ultimate Weapon).
If my assumptions are actually correct then Skyhighlands was formerly called "Starlands" too.
For whatever reason Monster Marsh may have been called "Arkeyan_Mechanism" and before somebody asks, that doesn't literally match any older levels.
Midnight Museum would have been "NiteLite" so maybe they still wanted to expand on that flashlight in Dark levels concept at first, maybe.
I'm not going to name all the level file names, I just thought those were the most interesting.

There's nothing else I can really say about TT or SF on the Wii. There are loads of files to go through on SF to the point that I just don't want to and there just doesn't seem to be much interesting legible text or interesting file names on either.

SCRacing lists "SkyRacingExpansion_Legendary" and "ScorpionStrikerCatapult_Legendary". I checked these and they aren't referring to the Golden Cannon or Kaos Trophy. Every single other Magic Item seems to be listed where I found this text.

There are also files in SCRacing that keep saying the build was done July 13 2015, around 17:30 (exact minutes and seconds vary, usually a couple minutes lower). I don't know if that would actually be the final build date, but it's always listed as that date and time as far as I know.

I'll say that I don't understand how SCRacing has flown under TCRF's nose. I don't want to be the one spilling the beans and I'd rather she didn't either, but BlueFox knows what I'm alluding to.

Finally, I checked and Giants didn't seem to dump that Dino-Rang texture I found earlier. Unless I just missed it or it failed to dump, then there's further evidence of it being an older file.
I also found a texture with a crude smiley face drawn on it as a joke, which I think is used in Cadaverous Crypt under the skull circle design thing, and obviously you never see that part of it.

Actually my last post on the subject, feel like I already put out too much.
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Quote: dark52
Error: You
Edited 1 time - Last edited at 07:19:07 20/10/2019 by Drawdler
BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#44 Posted: 16:21:48 24/10/2019 | Topic Creator
[User Posted Image]

https://connect.unity.com/p/skylanders

————
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fox on the run
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#45 Posted: 17:46:56 24/10/2019
[User Posted Image]

requires no description
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IF YOU HAVE TO ASK, IT'S TOO LATE
ThunderEgg Blue Sparx Gems: 747
#46 Posted: 20:50:34 25/10/2019
hes gonna give u a biiiig hug
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BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#47 Posted: 01:35:52 17/11/2019 | Topic Creator
Oooo, they postin' Clutch art on Tumblr, oooo.

Activision, quit with the NDAs. Let this dead fandom get what they want. It's like we're smuggling concept art.
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fox on the run
Bifrost Platinum Sparx Gems: 6752
#48 Posted: 02:37:29 17/11/2019
*spams save to pc button* I SAW BAD JUJU! Shame I can't add her to the wiki. Seems like the villains were planned as figures as some point then, so the plans for them were around before Imaginators!

The vehicles also changed terrain and could combine. Boy that'd have saved a lot on toy roster bloat.
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Edited 1 time - Last edited at 03:05:30 17/11/2019 by Bifrost
HeyitsHotDog Platinum Sparx Gems: 5200
#49 Posted: 02:39:57 17/11/2019
What tumblr tho
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When ever you get scared or nervous about something, you gotta do your best to keep on smiling and Go Beyond Plus Ultra!
BlueFox Gold Sparx [online] Gems: 2094
#50 Posted: 02:43:42 17/11/2019 | Topic Creator
https://skylandersmutual.tumblr.com/tagged/concept-art

This topic hasn’t got shut down yet, so I think I’m in the clear to post that.
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