Gotham Knights: Design Mr. Freeze and give him a gang to play with – IGN First

The important thing to know about the factions of the Knights of Gotham is that they are not only henchman for an evil man. The gangs of enemies you’ll find throughout Gotham’s dark streets are organized into branches – with their own preferences for street crime and gear – but they’re mercenaries, not mercenaries. must be worshipers.

Take a look at our subjects for today: the Regulator, and the classic super-violation Mr. Freeze. The Regulators are a gang existing in this version of Gotham, a group of advanced tech thieves who specialize in stealing advanced goods, traffic authorities, and augmenting their own power with benefits. their illicit interests. You can see them doing their own thing when you clean the streets – but you can also see them allied with Mr. Freeze, and as a result they tend to attack the enhanced elemental with ice. In fact, Freeze hires Modifiers for parts of his plot, they don’t just flock to his ends.

It led to a very interesting design challenge for the Gotham Knights art team – how do you design a villain and a gang that feels like them maybe work together, but not necessarily always?

What’s interesting is that the process is organic rather than forced. The team knew they wanted to include the iconic Freeze, but his association with a gang came later. At first, it was all about building a recognizable villain that didn’t feel too familiar.

Gotham Knights – Mr. Freeze Design and Concept Art

“When we get a villain like Mr. Freeze, I mean he had so much history, it was a challenge for our team when we got it,” explained character art director Jay Evans. “That is, ‘Where do we go from here?’ Because we look at all the past [versions of the character] that was very well done. For us, the kind of starting point is that he fits in ours Gotham City, on a technological level? So he’s the most technologically advanced piece of work in our Gotham. “

That’s not to say that this version of Freeze is a pure science fiction movie. The key for the design team was to create someone whose cutting-edge technology is still rooted in reality.

“A lot of our references are medical devices,” says Evans. “Cold, cool, almost sci-fi shapes with detailed lines and product design influences. But then, he can still understand. There are still mechanical connections. It is still relevant. It’s not just sci-fi blobs you have to use your imagination.”

Amazingly, to help build cutting edge technology that feels real in a way, the art team… used some cutting edge technology to make that happen.

Freeze hires Managers for parts of his plot, they don’t just flock to his cause.

“We started experimenting pretty early with the use of VR in our concept art model,” says Evans. “What makes it so great is when you’re designing a weapon or a character part, just having that thing in real life float in front of you in the correct proportions, it really helps. for artists. […] Then export that raw mesh, exporting it to a game engine right out of the box. It seems to be a really fast, natural path. And we used it on Mr. Freeze. “

“VR only [adds] Wu added. “If you [have a gauntlet in front of you], you feel like you can wear it right here, right now. And then you can see all those different views instantly in real time. That is very helpful. “

The use of VR helped the team understand more than just how Mr. Freeze looks like part of the design but also about how he feels about being in an interactive space, helping them build a tangible new version of an iconic character. But of course, you can only push one known superhero so far, and the team made sure to identify early on what makes Freeze instantly identifiable to even a casual comic book fan. often:

“The dome, the goggles, his face,” explains associate character art director, Jianli Wu. “The legend of Lord Freeze is an icon. We don’t want to deviate from that, because everyone, when they see it, they know it’s Mr Freeze. But we took the technology up a bit and we wanted to bring our own taste to his designs. We want to stay true to IP, but at the same time, we want to bring something new. So that’s the philosophy we have for a lot of the characters in the game, from player characters to people like Mr. Freeze. “

Gotham Knights – Regulatory faction concept art

On the other hand, Regulatory Authorities to be a brand new addition to the universe. While there have been a few DC superheroes called The Regulator over the years, the Gotham Knights faction doesn’t seem to be related to them. Originally, they weren’t even made to associate with Mr. Freeze.

“Our approach is to design factions as independent factions first,” explains Evans. “The Regulators in our novel are fantasies of these hackers, secure crackers, many other tech-related crimes. And what makes them unique is that they have this layer of ‘found technology’. So the Regulators are taking technology from the most futuristic or cutting edge places in Gotham – maybe STAR Labs or something.

“And then they’re making their weapons and equipment, and it’s all visible from the outside. So on the base class we have a modern, almost sporty outfit in bright colors. But on top of that, we have this layer of technology. On base units, which are the smaller elements, [but] on some of the more advanced prototypes, it could be things like a fully enhanced arm with an upgraded weapon”.

In the gallery above you can see the progress in action, a visual representation of how the game increases the strength of the enemies next to you. Enemy goons can range from difficulties in the Base, to Veterans, Champions, to Named Champions, and in the case of a Controller you can see how much more stolen technology they are applying to themselves as they increase in importance to the gang.

Gotham Knights – Executives Faction Enemy Designs

The managers can be Brawlers, Shooters, Snipers, Shockers and Dronemasters, all of whom use their technology in different ways to try to take down the Knights. It was only when that faction’s philosophy was established that the group realized they had created the perfect force of mercenaries to take on a role befitting their strength for Victor Fries – but that too. creates a little more work.

Evans said: “We have linked the Regulators with Mr. Freeze. “It seemed like a natural fit, given their level of technology, where they fit in artistically and their writing, things like that.”

“I remember at some point we looked at the Regulators again,” continued Wu, “because it would fit Mr. Freeze a bit more. So I think it’s just one of those inevitable parts of the project. “

After that redesign, everything really came together. Regulatory bodies can be found all over Gotham under normal circumstances, but you’ll also stumble across Freeze-aligned bags among them, presumably working under the direction of a supervisor . Later in Freeze’s optional villain arc, it looks like it will be the Tuner helping him cross the top of Elliot Center for a boss fight (which we saw in some 2020 movie scenes of the game).

They make for a natural team, but one that feels rooted more in business than in devotion – a part of Gotham Knights that has more grounding in the legendary comic book city. We’ll talk more about that soon month of IGN First InsuranceBut if you want to learn more right now, we have The first 16 minutes of the game to see, and a Revealing 28 unlockable superhero suitsand how they are designed.

Joe Skrebels is IGN’s Executive News Editor. Follow him on Twitter. Got a tip for us? Want to discuss a possible story? Please send an email to

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