Furmins: the Secret Artworks Stash - Part 1

Furmins: the Secret Artworks Stash - Part 1

2012 Housemarque

Our exploration into the world of Furmins continues with an additional commentary of Mikko Eerola, the game’s Lead Artist.

Renowned for his work on Outland, Mikko’s influence can be found in all aspects of Furmins, from the main characters’ undeniable cuddliness to the game’s rich, immersive backgrounds. In this interview, divided in 4 parts, we dip into Mikko’s design archive and touch on a number of images which were generated over the course of production.

Let’s start with the artwork titled “Crest”. Our readers can see it at the top of this post.

This showcases how we can use different kinds of lighting to achieve different kinds of moods. Also, this is a kind of “ornamental” style which is not typical for marble buildings, but still fits quite nicely.

Let’s move on to the flags.

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The flags have a medieval style of design to them. The Furmins’ world is inspired by different parts of art history, but not by one part in particular.

What was the thinking behind the “flag” idea?

They’re mainly decorations, meant to be in the background.

They aren’t meant to represent a particular clan?

There is a sort-of clan theme to them – I did research English “clan-type” colors. But they’re mainly to represent a medieval feel.

So this isn’t evidence that you’ve imagined the entire Furmins’ social structure?

(Laughing) No – I think they are fairly simple creatures.

How ’bout this background?

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The drawing style is inspired by Rembrandt’s line drawings, which look really different from his paintings. With regard to shading, this type of approach was really important because the mood is more important than realistic light direction. Actually, I used this “line drawing style” for all the backgrounds, but you don’t see that in the game – you just see the way that I painted them.

This is an early iteration of the “Homelands” level.

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You can see a dry river here, and the image conveys a sense of a sad story. It’s based on another painting I did and really liked, but there was nothing about it I could use for this project. And to be honest, the final “Homelands” level actually ended up looking a lot better than this one.

Talk about this one. It also features the infamous “bird”…

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This is the first iteration of the main characters. Even though they went through some tweaks, I think they still look pretty much the same as this first image. The Furmins look less angry now (laughs).

Liked this backstage? Stay tuned for Part 2, coming to the Housemarque DevBlog on Thu 15.

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