So 2-3 years ago I got a phone call from Peter, the other half of Digital Raven, and he asked “Hey mind being a Marine in a Star Craft Short Film?”. Star Craft 2 was weeks away from release, and I had the Beta, so no sooner than he asked did I show up ready to be a badass.
This event, a day of filming in City7’s Assistant Director‘s garage, started to get the ball rolling on what would become Digital Raven. As announced in one of our more recent Video Blogs we have decided to return to our roots and tackle a reboot.
As Peter mentions in the above video they were working on the very tight schedule for the contest. Our pre-production schedule this time is a bit longer! So we will be able to address a lot of our past issues, and deliver our vision in away that long time Star Craft fans will appreciate.
As we head into the realm of Science Fiction, we will be spending a lot more time on props and costuming, more so than we did with City7. As the props designer, among other things :), one of my first jobs is to figure out what we need to be looking at in order to bring the world of Star Craft to life.
Just like a building, a good prop needs some design and direction before you can even get into developing a physical version you can hold. Arguably the biggest prop in the Star Craft Universe is the C-14 Impaler gauss rifle. Everyone knows what it looks like, and who doesn’t want to have one of these just hanging around?
We aren’t looking at getting actors into full power suits though, as we are looking to keep the feel of the original Terran it Up! short film, here is where the design and planning stage comes in. We have to make a smaller rifle…
In the original film, our Marines joke about how “budget cuts” from the federation have left them unarmored and under-gunned, so no powersuits and full rifles. This is not a new concept to the Star Craft Universe. Ghosts are an awesome example of a “light armored” unit, as well as way back in the Star Craft 1 days there was a cut scene that showed a group of marines, and a dude that was a marine, but not in a suit!
A bit of a blast from the past! I mean those graphics were AWESOME!!! (Back in the day). Anyway, one of my first challenges is to take the C-14 Impaler, and get it to fit into the hands of someone who isn’t in-cased in 9 feet of power-armor.
Pretty steep order right? Well not really… the great thing about Science Fiction, is normally it has some basis in fact.
Let’s first look at this awesome painting of a Gauss Rifle. I will use this image as a point of reference as I move forward, a lot of the tool markings, manufacturing standards, and design elements will need to carry over into my design in order to keep continuity in the Star Craft Universe. Its a bit like how the: AK-47, Scorpion and Dragonov sniper rifle all share many features helping them be identified as Cold War-Era Russian Weapons.
Now the aim here is to make a smaller weapon. With this in mind I went to existing weapons in order to collect some ideas, so we end up with a new unique prop weapon, that could still thematically fit in with the Star Craft Universe. Here are two images of Sub-machine guns I found that I want to use to shape this design.
With these things in mind I can start to work on the thumbnail design, and finally full color design for the prop we shall use in our movie. Be sure to follow my blog to keep tabs on both City7 and our Terran It Up Reboot. More soon!