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Soul Fjord dev diary discusses the creation of characters in a '70s-esque Viking-funk world

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Airtight Games has released the second of its behind-the-scenes dev diaries chronicling the development of its Ouya-exclusive rhythm-based action game Soul Fjord, this time about the design of its characters including protagonist Magnus Jones.

For a small independent company like Airtight, it was important to balance concept with what was feasible, says lead animator Doug Magruder. Given that he was the game's only main animator, the more complex designs would have taken ages to animate. This resulted in an iterative process where initial concepts were refined and distilled. "It gets to be this really fun evolution of what a character looks like and what a style looks like."

The video shows how the look of protagonist Magnus Jones evolved, and introduces one of his enemies, the Lounge Dragon. The initial down-on-all-fours design would have been overly complicated to animate, so the Lounge Dragon was retooled to stand upright, and then given a face resembling a Viking longboat decoration to make him appear more Norse.

The next Soul Fjord dev diary will focus on the game's music and combat, says creative director Kim Swift, best known to many gamers as the creator of Portal.