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Behind the Cartoon Sci-fi Art work of Roguelike Shoulders of Giants – Out Now

We’re so thrilled to lastly launch Shoulders of Giants! Since we simply launched, the entire staff right here at Shifting Items are all feeling fairly reflective (in addition to barely terrified/excited in equal measures!), so I assumed it may be good to share just a few ideas on a facet of the sport that we’re significantly happy with: its stylized visible graphics. I assumed it may be good to take this chance to speak about our inspirations behind the look of the sport.

Whereas it’s superb to see how far photorealistic graphics might be pushed with the newest Xbox {hardware}, what actually excited us was creating one thing that mixed the newest graphics applied sciences like bodily based mostly rendering with a extra stylized shading method like cel shading. This was the idea behind our technical and aesthetic method to the visuals for Shoulders of Giants.

We began by experimenting with what this may appear to be by taking early idea artwork and making fundamental worlds with none gameplay. Initially we went additional into extra of a standard cel shaded look, however discovered that once we combined some photoreal rendering methods with that’s the place good particulars actually began to shine.

By way of setting, we knew that we wished the sport to happen in a sci-fi universe, which meant having a cosmic skybox stuffed with planets, stars and swirly clouds. We have been closely impressed by the fashion of sci-fi artwork from the Nineteen Seventies and cherished the way it usually contained large planets within the background to assist maintain the horizon attention-grabbing.


The fundamental story of the sport is that the darkish and chilly forces of Entropy have taken over the Universe, and it’s the gamers’ job to revive life and steadiness. One of many recreation’s fundamental NPCs is an omnipotent Owl from an historical order, and most of the ranges and props discovered all through the sport are impressed by that of historical civilizations, like Historic Egypt and Greece.

We imagined ranges with deserted ruins from an historical order scattered all through ranges that the participant may discover. This was a fundamental inspiration behind the look of the degrees and their structure.

A few of the props and ranges of the sport additionally take inspiration from surrealist work, significantly within the final act of the sport. We considered rumbling clouds, and stairs going off into the horizon.


Benefiting from a stylized look, we put emphasis on utilizing coloration to inform the story of Shoulders of Giants. One of many greatest themes within the recreation is darkish versus gentle.

The participant begins each degree off with the world coated in darkness and as you progress and ultimately beat the extent, you restore it with life and lightweight.

Making the “gentle” model of our landscapes pop with coloration was easy, however making the chilly, darkish variations of those alien worlds sing with coloration was not trivial. Our artwork director and I spent days pouring over palettes, and ultimately determined we needed to re-evaluate what “darkish” actually meant. We determined to lean extra into darkness as an idea of chilly, or lack of life.

Ultimately we discovered colours and lighting mixtures that also seemed vibrant and crowd pleasing, however nonetheless allowed us to precise our themes. We created sandy deserts, white fields of snow, and caustic acid worlds glowing with inexperienced.


We are able to’t watch for gamers to hop into the world we created!

For extra info, take a look at the sport’s retailer web page and official web site, or be part of our discord.

Xbox Live

Shoulders of Giants

Shifting Items Interactive


Concurrently management a sword-wielding robotic and a gunslinging house frog in Shoulders of Giants, an explosively colourful sci-fi roguelike. Play alone, with a good friend, or as a part of a four-person staff, slicing via waves of enemies on a quest to rescue the galaxy!

The forces of Entropy are spreading chaos via the celebs, corrupting residing planets and urging on the warmth demise of the universe. Led by the psychic Owl, one scrappy staff of house survivors are combating to revive the steadiness. A mysterious mech! A sharpshooting amphibian! Collectively they have to minimize via waves of enemies and restore gentle and life to the galaxy!

Pre-order the sport for entry to limited-edition dye units with particular visible results. Dazzle your mates!



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