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The Art of PS Vita’s Gravity Rush

Yoshiaki Yamaguchi's Avatar + Posted by Yoshiaki Yamaguchi on May 02, 2012 // Art Director, Gravity Rush

With Gravity Rush releasing on June 12th, I wanted to share how the artwork of this game came together as well as how the style of “Bande Dessinee” influenced the title’s art direction.

Gravity Rush incorporates the theme of Bande Dessinee (BD), a popular Franco-Belgian comic book art style. There are various types of BD style and they can be perceived in many ways. We first approached an element of BD we thought would fit well into the pre-existing game art. One of the differences between realistic expression and schematic expression represented by BD is that BD exaggerates the information that author wants to convey to the audience. By doing so, it conveys more of the accurate information that the author wants to be recognized.

While considering the gravity mechanic in the game, we brainstormed with these elements in mind. If a player can move around freely, the level should not only be big horizontally, but also vertically. Therefore, we designed the city with multiple levels of layers and structures.

Gravity Rush for PS Vita

Additionally, the line drawing method was used to exaggerate buildings and allow them to be more easily recognized. We also enhanced the color of the sky in order to give additional sensory information to the players.

Gravity Rush for PS Vita

The direction we chose to use for the game’s graphics conveys the necessary information with exaggeration that matches the player’s sensation. Taking that into consideration, we also wanted to use line drawings, the characteristic of BD and the simulation of beautiful air effects. I think the broader the game art expression becomes, the more interactive a game becomes.

Another important factor is the concept of a “living background.” This is the idea of bringing the game world itself to life so that users can actually ‘feel’ it. Basically, players can interact with certain objects in the game and they can actually get into the scenery within the remote background. Environmental background is not a piece of a picture, but it actually exists within the game, and we can use that background with our gameplay. That was our ultimate goal. By combining the unique art style of BD and the idea of living background, we created a sensation that could only be brought to life with a video game.

As a special treat, I am happy to share this concept movie that we created during the early stages of Gravity Rush’s development. Click on the video below for a sneak peek at the game’s unique art style in motion before it launches in North America on June 12th.


What do you think? Leave your thoughts in the comments!

//Add Your Own

58 Comments

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1

+ Crono_Breaker on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:05 am said:

I cant wait for this game i downloaded the demo from the japanesse store and i cant stop to play it 1 day, its amazing, i hope this time come whit choise to select audio and subtitles, i hate play in no original lenguaje.


2

+ Neil on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:07 am said:

luvs it


3

+ thunderbear on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:07 am said:

This game is the main reason I bought a Vita. I was hoping it would be released closer to launch but I am very happy it’s coming out soon.


4

+ remanutd5 on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:10 am said:

very good , can’t wait !!!


5

+ remanutd5 on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:10 am said:

how about Little Big Planet release date?


6

+ JimmyHACK on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:13 am said:

Please offer a preorder option for digital buyers as well as the preorder incentives. Please do not alienate us digital copy people from bonuses for preordering….. that said, day 1 purchase (digital)


7

+ polo155 on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:13 am said:

@remanutd5: you off topic!

Anyhow, on topic, i cannot wait to try this, i wanted to try this the day i saw it, i dont know much of it (havent did my hmwrk, busy) but it just catches me for some reason so i hope there is a demo as well. lloks really good from what i have seen in shots.


8

+ GGCAN on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:15 am said:

Wow….looks very nice !

Great work.


9

+ polo155 on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:17 am said:

i agree with JimmyHACK!

share the love, i only spent like $600 after outfitting my vita with insurance/ memory card/screen protectors/ headset (official earbuds) AND I DONT REGRET A DIME OF IT! :)))


10

+ Cross-Legacy on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:17 am said:

I’m so excited for this game. Whole reason I got a Vita.


11

+ remanutd5 on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:20 am said:

@6 oops my bad , i get too excited when i see vita stuff on the blog , its just that i’m getting impatient to know LBP release date lol


12

+ shinjix2 on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:26 am said:

June 12th is Shaping up for a great day to take a vacation!! I got my game pre-ordered!!

Now i have to decide if I am going to get the Metal Gear Collection that day too!!


13

+ Blkant on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:31 am said:

This was the only reason I got a vita after playing the demo. I honestly can’t think of another game that just seemed so unique and enjoyable with such little to play at the time. I really hope this isn’t the last we see of this title (sequel?) or at least of the people who made it. It is easily my most anticipated game.


14

+ iTofuMan on May 2nd, 2012 at 9:57 am said:

I know this has nothing with the Art, but its a question i feel needs to be asked and answered as soon as possible.

1. Will Digital versions of this game include the pre-order? i know several psp titles had “pre-order” like goodies where you bought the game within the week of release and you got the pre-order bonus. If not i understand that the PSN has pre-order now with some games so why not do that and give us the dlc?

2. Will the demo come out? preferably before the actual release date. ill never understand why some devs choose to release a demo usually months after the release of the game. the demo is to basically show people what they are in for, for the game. the people who wanted it would have already bought it, and the questionable ones would more than likely just forget about it.

So if you plan on releasing a demo (since gamestop has it on their vita why not?) please do it before the release date.


15

+ akibake on May 2nd, 2012 at 10:14 am said:

I could not be more intrigued by this game. The artful style is really wonderful.


16

+ Heavenly_king on May 2nd, 2012 at 10:55 am said:

I am buying this game from the PSN, so please Sony add the pre-order incentives for us too!!!! Just like you did God of War: Ghost of Sparta.

PLEASE!!!!


17

+ TMAZT3R on May 2nd, 2012 at 11:01 am said:

Mr. Yamaguchi, the game looks fantastic, us people west side have been waiting for months. Also if you wrote that, your English is near perfect, that already tells me you have talent in your studio.


18

+ morningdrive on May 2nd, 2012 at 11:04 am said:

i love that theme. kinda reminds me of a zelda fanfare type soundtrack. Hope the soundtrack plays along those notes


19

+ Kazriko on May 2nd, 2012 at 11:14 am said:

Of all of the demos at Gamestop, this was the one that finally made me pull the trigger and grab the early adopter bundle of the Vita. I knew I’d get one eventually for Persona 4, but this just made it a day one purchase.


20

+ lisatsunami on May 2nd, 2012 at 11:28 am said:

@Yamaguchi-San: I hope your team realizes how much the American Vita owners are excited about this game. I would prefer a digital version but I’ll buy the tiny little game card to get the bonus DLC.

The artwork is beautiful and creative and different and a huge factor in why I’ve wanted this game for many months now..


21

+ Dragonsmana on May 2nd, 2012 at 11:36 am said:

Very cool! Definitely will pick this game up! Finally bought a Vita yesterday and I’m loving it! Only thing I would change however is giving us an option to stop the screen from dimming while idle like on the PSP, it can get in the way of such things as watching cutscenes (like the Sumoni demo opening). Any chance of you guys bringing the option into a future update? Back on topic: Gravity Rush looks great. can’t wait!


22

+ Airwalkinman17 on May 2nd, 2012 at 11:37 am said:

I LOVE SONY! Games like this (and SO many others) are why I’m proud to be a gamer. I haven’t bought a VITA yet, because of other circumstances, but I will buy one by the time this game comes out. That conceptual piece was so epic.


23

+ drepsx3 on May 2nd, 2012 at 12:01 pm said:

Does the game include the artbook japan version had?


24

+ Heavenly_king on May 2nd, 2012 at 12:38 pm said:

XD


25

+ lPHOENIXZEROl on May 2nd, 2012 at 12:49 pm said:

I’ve had Gravity Rush pre-ordered since October and was greatly disappointed when it fell out of the launch window but we’re just over a month away now for the game that was the reason for my launch Vita, WHOO!


26

+ DarkOne_PR on May 2nd, 2012 at 12:52 pm said:

mine half way paid pre order…


27

+ DaMann22 on May 2nd, 2012 at 1:03 pm said:

Please I want the pre-order content on the digital release. The psp had week+ long content if purchased from the PSN, why can’t the VITA?

Either way I am really looking forward to this game and cant wait.


28

+ Elvick_ on May 2nd, 2012 at 1:07 pm said:

Wish it was out already. ): Hopefully we get a sequel ;D

I love Japan Studio games. Or hey… they could bring on over LocoRoco and Patapon too… just saiyan.


29

+ Hooligantuan on May 2nd, 2012 at 1:11 pm said:

Looks neat, shame it’s being wasted on the Vita.


30

+ Type-F- on May 2nd, 2012 at 1:20 pm said:

Lmao this video got me more hyped than the 2012 video of gravity rush….If it look so awesome in 2008 imagine when it’s released in 2012! Can’t wait, I’ve massaged my PS Vita long enough to warm it up for this game. Hurry up! grrr


31

+ TallCrowe on May 2nd, 2012 at 1:27 pm said:

I’m going to buy this when it comes out. I must.


32

+ NoGodsOnlyMan on May 2nd, 2012 at 1:47 pm said:

stop teasing!!!!!

i want it NOW!


33

+ Frege on May 2nd, 2012 at 2:09 pm said:

This game has a very interesting concept, moving around by re-orientating gravity is looking to be a hell of a ride.

I hope this game isn’t too difficult though. I kind of suck at action games. :s


34

+ TMAZT3R on May 2nd, 2012 at 2:30 pm said:

@26 Wasted lol you jelly you cannot play it.


35

+ Naijaplaya on May 2nd, 2012 at 2:38 pm said:

Awesome game
Kat needs to be in Playstation all stars battle royale


36

+ triple_lei on May 2nd, 2012 at 4:11 pm said:

There’s not a Vita post that goes by without Hooligantuan’s useless troll comments. I for one will be getting this, ‘natch.


37

+ X_BROCKLEE_X on May 2nd, 2012 at 6:00 pm said:

Looks great probably won’t be long before I pre-order it and It looks like something I never have played before. I will as well be investing in probably an 8gb memory card so I can store it.


38

+ Incagneto on May 2nd, 2012 at 6:33 pm said:

I so can’t wait for this game. (sure I would of liked it sooner but oh well at least it is still coming.) this game is the reason why I bought the ps vita. (why is because it made me see what the ps vita could be. with new Ideas and new story’s. reminded me of the playstation 2 and the playstation classic rpg/jrpgs.) I have never played a bad game from JapanStudio please do not disappoint.


39

+ Enigma777 on May 2nd, 2012 at 7:41 pm said:

So excited for this game!!!


40

+ Kchow23 on May 2nd, 2012 at 8:04 pm said:

I can’t wait for the demo already! I hope that this will be the first PS Vita game to get a huge marketing budget behind it as I am already certain it will be a huge hit since it got a 9/10 from Eurogamer!


41

+ DeathHeart_86 on May 2nd, 2012 at 8:43 pm said:

I will buy it… but what is the price? i want to start saving. If it’s 40 bucks i will get angry, but i will still by the game.


42

+ The-Sigma-Alpha on May 3rd, 2012 at 3:46 am said:

Please………Please!!!!! Bring this to PSN for the PS3.


43

+ The-Sigma-Alpha on May 3rd, 2012 at 3:50 am said:

Eventually that is. I know you have to use it to help boost up the PSVita but down the road would be great.


44

+ WATERSTAND on May 3rd, 2012 at 4:39 am said:

I’ve had the import now on my alternate Japan based PSN account now (along with Ragnarok Odyssey, another Japan-only most wanted on the Vita) and you guys should really be excited. It has a massive open world hub with thousands of nooks and crannies to hunt forrest purple orbs. Trust me, you’ll be hunting for these puppies to make your character grow better. Oh, and you can also blast innocent children into oblivion in this game it’s nice.


45

+ mastorofpuppetz on May 3rd, 2012 at 6:05 am said:

@26 troll harder, how is it being wasted? Mommy won;’t buy you a vita? The do without.


46

+ luvtoseek on May 3rd, 2012 at 6:23 am said:

Great art & great gameplay, my friend has the Jampanese import & it’s a work of art. Let’s have the pre-order bonuses for digital buyers!!


47

+ CrusaderForever on May 3rd, 2012 at 7:10 am said:

…………gasp…..what did I just watch!? That was extremely unique and amazing!!! I don’t know what to say………..I am so excited for this game. Nice work, it really looks like something special. The art direction and pure uniqueness of the gameplay is breath taking! You have my money regardless but it would be great if you could add your awesome preorder bonuses to the digital release as well. Even if you don’t I will be buying this digital day 1!! Impressive……..most impressive!


48

+ Budapesti on May 3rd, 2012 at 7:38 am said:

As a huge fan of the late, great Jean Giraud, I can definitely see his influence all over this (I suspect TGC were inspired by his artwork when making Journey, too!)

Gravity Rush is one of the main reasons I bought a Vita. The demo was absolutely beautiful. The floating mechanic actually reminded me a lot of the Zero-G sequences in the Dead Space series, while the artwork looks like a mix of Jet Set Radio and European comics art.

That trailer, shot just around the corner from where I used to live in Budapest was pretty great, too.

Absolutely cannot wait for June 12th!


49

+ TomatoDragon on May 3rd, 2012 at 8:35 am said:

Will there be a conceptual art book released? Love the art style of this game, and would gladly buy a conceptual book. Already got the God of War 3, Uncharted 2, and Resident Evil 5 art books.


50

+ furystylee on May 3rd, 2012 at 9:40 am said:

This game is now back on my radar. Thanks for posting the amazing concept work!


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