Aesthetic Driven Development: Choosing Your Art Before Making a Game -

Aesthetic Driven Development: Choosing Your Art Before Making a Game

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In this 2020 GDC Virtual Talk, Coldwild Games’ Vladimir Slav explains how the team used the power of twitter to do the market research and design the game around the style that audiences liked before they even saw the actual gameplay.

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  1. The isometric scenes reminds me of games like Breath of Fire 3 and Final Fantasy Tactics.

  2. Интересная история) Интересно, как пошли дела со следующими играми

  3. i expected something more design centered but that was still interesting

  4. Nice talk, i'm always up for more art-centric design

  5. Vladimir Slav – is it possible to be more slav than him?

  6. Choosing artstyle before actually develop your game. Well most of newbies struggle at this stage.

  7. That's an interesting way of using social media for market research. The likes/comments/retweets data could easily be used in various ways by changing the meaning and relevance of each variant. Art challenges, in general, are an easy way of gaining visibility and interest towards you as creators, and as a brand, even if you aren't selling anything yet. Thank you for sharing your journey.

  8. I like this guy 🙂 (+ Majestic Carrot looks dope)

  9. Instagram is a lot more powerful than Twitter to share art. I experienced that difference first hand. You can get a lot more eyeballs from non-followers on Instagram.

  10. Hey! This is a cozy indie studio story with a potential to scale up. Thanks for the insight and good luck!

  11. Hey! Vladimir here. Thanks for checking out my talk, if you have any specific questions – you can ask them here and I'll try to answer later.

  12. It's not morally bankrupt to create beautiful art 🙂 congratulations. The idea that games should always be about gameplay is garbage. Games are an experience, and whether you get that experience artistically or even musically instead of just mechanically, it's no less valid.

  13. "The game has sold around 10,000 copies in seven months, so the real bankruptcy that is threatening us is the moral bankruptcy…" hahaha

  14. Please do consider making an isometric tactical RPG in the future. It looks like you would make a beautiful game, and the world needs more good TRPGs.

  15. And that is why big game studios pour millions of dollars on the art department. Beauty sells!

  16. Very nice and practical talk!

    But honestly from the look of your previous games – the art was the problem not the approach. I looked at the screenshots and the first things came to mind were "generic", "dowdy" and "uninteresting". The same time the new game art instantly caught my eye.

    Nobody can stop you from having a nice playing prototype or two and apply the same approach you did(art-wise) with the exception that you have a clue how the game would potentially play. And applying these constraints to the art you are creating. I think the paradox is – the gameplay goes first when it comes to the released game(potentially transferring credibility of the studio to the next game releases), while the art comes first when the game doesn't have an audience yet.

    Again excellent talk and plenty of things to think about.

  17. good talk! made me a bit more confident that i need to focus on visuals if theyre my strengths

  18. I love the art style and I love the idea of Aesthetic Driven Development!! I definitely going to buy this game when I will find some time to play it 🙂

  19. tl;dr Do market research before making your game.

  20. I like the way you make this unique game, it very interesting !
    ( by the way I have a problem about "RTS units" that means "Real-time Strategy units" right ? just want to know THX ~)

  21. Great talk! Thank you!
    I know, it's odd, but I think 2D harder to work with than 3D (I'm a pro comic book industry artist. 2D is supposed to be my "strong point", but I think 3D easier. Go figure). 2D animation, mainly for characters, is a nightmare to create. With 3D, I plug my Kinect and record a mocap.

    The funny part is, if you create a 3D game set in the contemporary world, you'll have access to a ton of commercial-free models, animation, materials that can make your life easier. And I'm not talking about asset flipping. Thanks to Quixel, Epic, Turbosquid, marketplaces starter kits, and a ton of other websites, I'm finishing my third-person shooter demo to see the audience's reaction before I finish the whole game. I took more time than expected because I tweaked the graphics to fit something more stylized (aesthetic is more Hitman than Call of Duty style, ykwis). Still, it's been doable.

    It depends on the dev… I guess?

  22. I didn't know whether I am to buy Merchant of the Skies, but then I've learned you were from Riga. Instabuy.

  23. In other words: a strong, visual art style helps make your game stand out in the crowd.

  24. really interesting talk overall, thanks !

  25. Nice talk! I'll admit the title had me intrigued as I'm a bit skeptical of approaching art first as opposed to gameplay, but this was a good analysis. It's at least very important to consider the art early on so that people aren't pushed away by the art when there is good gameplay underneath.

  26. 00:28 About Us

    02:56 The Plan

    04:16 Selection/Testing Criteria

    06:20 The baseline/ Twitter Metrics

    07:07 Results and Examples

    09:40 Selected Results

    11:20 The final choice

    17:25 User Conversion

    19:25 Results

    20:14 How to improve the process

    21:50 Viewer Discretion

    23:25 Q&A location

    We are # yolostudiogame – an indie game studio. We love making games!

    We are seriously learning about the game industry.

    So we tweet a GDC video summary every Tuesday.

    Happy making game, everyone!

  27. Thanks. I've learnt a new approch for me.

  28. "Who makes non-erotic puzzle games in 2020?" lmao

  29. @9:15 it looks like two color palettes that shouldn't be together, otherwise the bright booths would get more attention if not for the cold greys.

  30. Haven't really seen a GDC talk about art in such depth. Much appreciated.

  31. okay but the PS1 and pixel art crazes have taught us that this leads to over saturation and games of lower quality

  32. So that Japanese pixel art is from their game nice am gonnay buy it

  33. Really great talk – and a really clever development approach. There are so many indie games now that I think you have to be eye catching to get any sales.

  34. I really appreciate this video thanks for sharing this. Excellent approach. As a solo dev never having sold a game I am realising this is the best approach.

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