The world of Ever Oasis – part 3
Explore the world to expand your oasis – and your adventuring horizons – in Ever Oasis on Nintendo 3DS family systems. Visit website
1. GREZZO Co., Ltd.: a software development company based in Tokyo, Japan. They were involved in the development of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D and The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D.
In part 2, I discussed my creative process for world-building and the sorts of things I like to think about when imagining a new setting. Today, I’d like to talk about how important good art is to help realise that vision.
When building a new world, it’s essential to create good concept art so that everyone involved can form the same image of it. It’s only once the whole team could properly picture Vistrahda in their minds that we started working on game models.
Let’s hear from the two people responsible for breathing life into the world through their concept art.
Masaki Yasuda (Lead Concept Artist)
"This world is so clear in Mr Ishii’s mind – how much of it can we reflect on paper?"
That was the question that concerned me most. Our designs were so obsessively detailed that I think they gave the background scenery modellers trouble creating them. The art team was often caught between conflicting demands!
The oasis grows little by little, and the art demonstrates that through the evolution of individual objects. We paid close attention to this process of change, so please keep an eye out for it as you play! There are lots of interesting designs on things like Bloom Booths, deco plants and Factum Relics, and we hope you’ll have fun collecting all the different models.
As for the outside world and the dungeons, the basic premise was that the world is a desert, so we had a hard time making different areas look distinct. I can’t go into specifics, but as you progress into the latter part of the game, you’ll encounter more and more eccentric designs that aim to keep the adventure fresh. I have fond memories of drawing something to see how far I could push the boundaries. I didn’t go so far as to draw things that conflicted with the game’s setting, though!
There are also areas in which the colour palette and the atmosphere change completely at night. The different settlements and their buildings are all designed according to the tribes’ unique characteristics, so please look closely and compare them!
Yumi Kikuoka (Concept Artist)
When creating the artwork for Ever Oasis, we didn’t only work hard on the outside world and the dungeons, but also took great pains in designing relatively trivial things like merchandise and plants. For every “thing” in the game, we put out five to 10 ideas and tried to work out how to make them both easy to grasp and interesting.
It would make me happy if players would occasionally stop to look at things that they would normally walk past and barely even notice. Of course, there are also lots of different characters and Bloom Booths, so I hope you’ll find some favourites amongst them!
Stop and smell the flowers
There seems to be an expectation with recent games that they should allow the player to advance as efficiently as possible. Developers try to provide a stress-free experience through simple maps and quest markers to show your destination. Of course, in Ever Oasis we’ve also made it so you can find your way without getting lost.
However, I think that things like stopping to gaze at the blue sky, finding a cactus in an unlikely spot and harvesting materials from it, or pausing to have a chat with travellers are all part of the fun of exploring Vistrahda, even if they don’t directly help you complete the game.
So rather than follow the shortest possible route to the ending, I hope that you’ll search for rare items or listen to the other residents’ requests and discover a new side of them – take lots of little detours on your journey through the desert.
And with that advice – goodbye, and thanks for reading!
If you haven’t already done so, please check out the other parts of this series. Part 1 is all about the characters of Ever Oasis, while part 2 discusses the creative process involved when dreaming up a new video game world.
Free demo* available
Ever Oasis is available in shops and as a downloadable version from Nintendo eShop now, only on Nintendo 3DS family systems.
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