Semi Secret Games

No Transformers “voodoo,” and the reason for shoulder pads: the art of Strike Suit Zero

No Transformers “voodoo,” and the reason for shoulder pads: the art of Strike Suit Zero

Strike Suit Zero looks as good as it plays, and I thought it would be great to explore some of the game’s concept art and the thinking behind it. The images below were created by Semi Secret Games lead artist Dan Lodge and Junji Okubo, who designed the game’s ships and Mechs. There are some interesting notes here, and from here on out all comments written about the images were provided to us by Dan Lodge. Enjoy! 

At one point we considered depicting every character in the game wearing a different helmet. As a result we concepted a great number of them. The look of the visor was inspired by a cockpit designed by Junji Okubo.

We wanted to rework the traditional military uniform a little and focused on using modern synthetic materials. You can see we ditched traditional tasseled epaulettes for a shoulder pad. The light emitting parts of the uniform all serve a function. The glowing medal for example would allow you to identify an officer quickly in a dark bridge. The shoulder pads would make you more visible in dimly lit hangars - the sci-fi equivalent of a hi-vis vest.

The money we recieved from Kickstarter has had some very direct effects on the final game. Before getting funded our character portraits hadn’t been refined much past a comic book feel. Post successful funding we were given the OK to polish them up to the more realistically rendered images you will see in-game.

Despite being no more than a thumbnail in game, most of the characters went through a rigourous development process of iteration. When you are building a universe from scratch, it’s important to go that bit further.

This was the initial design for the Strikesuit. It’s more typically Junji’s style, see the shoulder/light housing which shares similarities with some of Junji’s work for Steel Battalion. We were forced to move away from this design due to animation constraints.

There is no Michael Bay “transform out of nothing” voodoo going on in SSZ. Junji’s training as an engineer and our love of functional, near-future sci-fi inspired more pragmatic designs.

The Colonial ships tend to be bigger and blockier than their UNE counterparts. The Colonial Carrier is the largest foe you will battle head on and measures 2233m (2.23km) in length.

Strike Suit Zero will be released for the PC on January 24.