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Mod of the Year 2009 Editors Choice - Best Original Art Direction

Posted by Henley on Jan 27th, 2010
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2009 had many inspiring and graphically stunning releases throughout the year. To be nominated for an award in Best Original Art Direction, a fresh and unique look was key. High-res textures and detailed models while great, was not our focus, instead this award is all about artistic originality. Here are the ModDB editor's top selection of 2009.



Out of Hell
is a singleplayer horror experience for UT2004! Make your way through a decimated town overrun by blood-thirsty zombies! Powerful firearms and brutal melee weapons are at your disposal as you cut and cleave through over 20 grimy and blood-soaked maps!


A Reckless Disregard for Gravity
is loosely based on the sport of base-jumping. In the game, you gain points by swooping within an eyelash of buildings, scoring extra points by kissing the surface, all while going as fast as you can! You can score extra points giving a thumbs-up to spectators as you fall past them or be a rebel and gain points by flipping them off at just the right moment.

NEOTOKYO°
is a first person shooter that aims to provide a visceral & realistic combat experience in a rich futuristic setting. NEOTOKYO° takes place in and around a fictionalized Tokyo approximately 30 years in the future. Mankind has begun to fuse with technology. Government and corporate corruption have transformed Tokyo into a deadly dystopian nightmare.

The Ball
offers an adventure that puts you in the boots of an explorer who gets stuck in a cavern and bumps onto ancient Meso-American tombs. While making your way through the internal workings of ancient ziggurats, golden cities, and huge caverns, your only companion is a mysterious big gold and metal-shelled ball.

Zeno Clash
is an action fighting game set in a punk fantasy world. The game blends the first person genre with the fighting game genre and the combat is generally up close and brutal. The original visuals, which make full use of the Source engine features, are a refreshing deviation from traditional fantasy games.

Post comment Comments  (0 - 50 of 75)
AshtonAndersen
AshtonAndersen Jan 27 2010, 7:11am says:

All look great, but in my opinion I think Zeno Clash did a fantastic job with their unique art-style. Good luck to all the nominees!

+9 votes     reply to comment
Emil_4444
Emil_4444 Jan 27 2010, 11:19am replied:

I don't know how they can choose because I really like them all! But Zeno Clash is an awesome art!

+4 votes     reply to comment
diesal_11
diesal_11 Jan 27 2010, 7:18am says:

i think A Reckless Disregard for Gravity should win

+5 votes     reply to comment
medve
medve Jan 27 2010, 7:20am says:

aaaaaa has a too boring gameplay and monoton grafic elements
neotokyo is really nice, i really loved the environment
out of hell has the greatest textures ever, great work with this outdated engine
ball is nice, but only in the u3 category as msu has proved
zeno has nothing to do with art at this point, the direction is good, but needs a lot more detail to feel like a real world

i respect all these games, all of them got some special thing but neotokyo is simply better then all of them.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Nikholai-Chan
Nikholai-Chan Jan 27 2010, 7:27am says:

NeoTokyo I say but that's coz I'm a huge fan of Ghost In The Shell.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Barnz
Barnz Jan 27 2010, 7:36am says:

Zeno Clash, 'nuff said. Did anyone ever check ACE Team's YouTube channel? They have videos showing their old products, including a game set in Zeno Clash universe (it's using Monolith's engine), which eventually turned into Zeno Clash. They obviously spent a lot of time (years) on their art direction.

+5 votes     reply to comment
FW:ToW_Sushi
FW:ToW_Sushi Jan 27 2010, 7:51am says:

Wow, this is a tough one to call. My bet is on The Ball, though.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Guessmyname
Guessmyname Jan 27 2010, 8:33am says:

I'd call it as being between Neotokyo and Out of Hell, personally, simply for the amount of work gone into the visuals

+2 votes     reply to comment
qeloqoo
qeloqoo Jan 27 2010, 8:33am says:

Mod of the Year 2009 Editors Choice - Best Original Art Direction...
Hmm, are Zeno Clash and A Reckless Disregard for Gravity really mods?

0 votes     reply to comment
Mastix
Mastix Jan 27 2010, 8:37am replied:

Mod of the Year 2009 Editors Choice - this is the name of the so-called competition, there is the Mod of the Year 2009 Editors Choice - Best Indie if you didn't notice, and the catagory says "Best Original Art Direction" without saying Mod or TC.

+1 vote     reply to comment
qeloqoo
qeloqoo Jan 27 2010, 8:40am replied:

Oh, well, last year it was map pack winning best upcoming mod. I'm not surprised.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Henley Author
Henley Jan 27 2010, 8:51am replied:

You can thank the player votes for that, nothing to do with the editors choice.

+8 votes   reply to comment
Mastix
Mastix Jan 27 2010, 9:35am replied:

Yep, you can blame the majority for having a bad taste (I do agree with you on the mappack thingy).

+4 votes     reply to comment
DuckSauce
DuckSauce Jan 27 2010, 9:50am replied:

Last year sure showed me what player's choice really ment!
I know now not to expect too much out of that, last year's editor's choice awards were great though and I'm expecting this year to be no different! The video's were all great to watch last year, hope the quality is still there :D

Gogo ModDB!

+3 votes     reply to comment
NullSoldier
NullSoldier Jan 27 2010, 10:27am replied:

Yeah... I don't make friends with people who voted for the map pack last year.

+4 votes     reply to comment
Mastix
Mastix Jan 27 2010, 8:34am says:

My bet is Zeno Clash.
All of those got great original artistic styles but Zeno Clash is just one level above.

+2 votes     reply to comment
█Black/Brunez█
█Black/Brunez█ Jan 27 2010, 8:35am says:

Zeno Clash is the one that have more chance to win, but The Ball and AAAAA(...)! A Reckless Disregard for Gravity have a big chance to win, too.

+1 vote     reply to comment
altercuca
altercuca Jan 27 2010, 8:58am says:

a fight to the death between The Ball and Out of Hell!!! must see this!

+2 votes     reply to comment
DuckSauce
DuckSauce Jan 27 2010, 9:41am says:

When looking at actual "original" art style I'd say Zeno Clash wins, with The Ball a high possibility to.

Overal quality of art I'd say anyone has a chance to win but A reckless disregared for gravity, it had sweet gameplay, the art style is interesting and even without top notch graphics looks great at a glance and that's mostly what you see when falling down, but I don't ought the chance very high that it will win, Zeno Clash and The Ball just seem to have a much more interesting style, especially Zeno Clash has a crazy and good looking art style.

Out of the 5 I never played Out of Hell so I can't judge that one, from superficial glances it seems like another zombie shooter, but the reactions from people seem to indicate it's more than that.

Either way, my bet is on Zeno Clash or the Ball for this one ;)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Torabi
Torabi Jan 27 2010, 10:11am says:

Zeno Clash has to win!

+3 votes     reply to comment
PytoX
PytoX Jan 27 2010, 10:16am says:

Definately Zeno Clash! :)

+3 votes     reply to comment
dave_5430
dave_5430 Jan 27 2010, 10:33am buried:

(buried)

Borderlands isn't unique?

Dang, I guess I'll have to give 'em a call that they suck too much.

On a side note, is it me or is everything on this list either source or ut based? prejudice much...

-5 votes     reply to comment
Henley Author
Henley Jan 27 2010, 10:59am replied:

Not sure what you mean, as there is no game on this list that shares the same engine. As for borderlands that isn't a mod or an indie title, not sure why you would think otherwise.

+5 votes   reply to comment
DuckSauce
DuckSauce Jan 27 2010, 10:59am replied:

Borderlands isn't an indie though?
At least the pricing sure told me that.

ModDB Moty is for mods and indies, not for non-indies.

And yes, 2 of the mods are Source, 2 of them are UT and 1 of them is an indie. Your point is? Last year a Battlefield 2 mod won at two different categories, the way I see it, they're not biased at all, but I could be wrong, feel free to show me mods on other engines with original art directions.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Mularac
Mularac Jan 27 2010, 11:03am replied:

2 of them are indie, one with the source engine (Zeno clash) and I don't know the one Aaaahaaa (or however :P) used for his game. As for the others, 1 source mod, one ut2004 mod and an other ut3 mod. Yeah, quite some variety.

0 votes     reply to comment
Micah
Micah Jan 27 2010, 11:31am replied:

Just because there are two games that use the same SERIES of engine doesn't mean it's the same engine. The engines behind UT2004 and UT3 are a world apart.

+1 vote     reply to comment
SEKCobra
SEKCobra Jan 27 2010, 10:37am says:

I hope Neotokyo will win this one.

0 votes     reply to comment
RKotern
RKotern Jan 27 2010, 10:59am says:

20s

+1 vote     reply to comment
SEKCobra
SEKCobra Jan 27 2010, 11:04am says:

Why do all Countdowns stay az zero for so long without really showing what should come after it? :<

+1 vote     reply to comment
Headcrusher
Headcrusher Jan 27 2010, 11:06am says:

ZEEENNNOOOOOO CLLLLAAASSSSSHHHHH

0 votes     reply to comment
Varsity
Varsity Jan 27 2010, 11:08am says:

I'm so disappointed that the video narrator didn't pronounce the "AaaaaAAaaaAAAaaAAAAaAAAAA!!!" :P

+4 votes     reply to comment
DuckSauce
DuckSauce Jan 27 2010, 11:12am replied:

Or just stick in a clip of Tarzan doing his jungle AaaaaAAaaaAAAaaAAAAaAAAAA!!!

+2 votes     reply to comment
DuckSauce
DuckSauce Jan 27 2010, 11:11am says:

Well that was unexpected for me.
Grats to the winner regardless!

Stupid question maybe, but what's TLC?
Quote from the video "With a little bit of TLC..."

+1 vote     reply to comment
Henley Author
Henley Jan 27 2010, 11:11am replied:

tender love and care.

+4 votes   reply to comment
Mastix
Mastix Jan 27 2010, 11:14am says:

Out of Hell alongside Neotokyo are a bit dull looking when compared to the other nominees but I guess it's a matter of taste.
Anyway, gratz for OfH.

+4 votes     reply to comment
Torabi
Torabi Jan 27 2010, 11:18am says:

Are you serious? I mean, Out of Hell it looks great but still, it's art direction is far from unique. Killing Floor is also set in a simmilar enviroment and whatnot. Zeno Clash, looks NOTHING like anything that I have ever seen before, especially on the Source engine. Zeno Clash still wins in my mind.
Will be interesting to see what people on Moddb voted for.

Still, congrats to the team behind Out of Hell.

+8 votes     reply to comment
DuckSauce
DuckSauce Jan 27 2010, 11:44am replied:

I agree somewhat, but I haven't played Out of Hell so I can't judge that all that fairly.

However I think Best Original Art direction could be interpreted as the best art with an original direction, so maybe they thought Out of Hell had the best(highest quality) art with still an original art direction.

Although not having played it I've no idea what would be original, obviously the most original parts won't be shown in the video's(because that would spoil it!).

Regardless though, it's up to the "editors" on this one, it's what they think, so Out of Hell won fair and square. Already congratulated in a comment above, but here's one again, grats to whoever is behind Out of Hell.

+3 votes     reply to comment
Tatsur0
Tatsur0 Jan 27 2010, 11:37am says:

Out of Hell looked great and a lot of hard work went into "CUSTOM" content. I was hoping to see NeoTokyo win this cause i'm a bit biased obviously but also because it was the Art style that made me want to work on the mod. It has the most unique art style IMHO but all great choices.

Congrats Chicken you earned it :)

+2 votes     reply to comment
John_volkov
John_volkov Jan 27 2010, 12:05pm says:

if you ask me Earth's Special Forces has the best art direction just look at what they did with hl 1 engine http://www.moddb.com/mods/earths-special-forces

-3 votes     reply to comment
Henley Author
Henley Jan 27 2010, 12:16pm replied:

Its not released and they have not had a significant update this year, that is why they are not on this list, that and the fact the art direction isn't something original either (ie based on an anime).

+3 votes   reply to comment
razorb
razorb Jan 27 2010, 1:37pm replied:

i dont want to stir anything up.. but saying esf's art direction isnt unique because of the anime is fine.. but then saying out of hell's art direction is so original that it wins over everything else.. is just silly i wish you could actually explain why it is so original, instead of talking about the fact that it looks good for an old engine.. you really didnt say why it was original that it deserved the award ya know..

also please dont take this the wrong way.. i do think the maker of Out of Hell did a great job in terms of making so much art for the game.. its just not original at all.. its all based on things that already exist and composed in a pretty standard way.. anyway! rant over! :) zeno clash was my winnaar!

+2 votes     reply to comment
Henley Author
Henley Jan 27 2010, 1:45pm replied:

Thats like saying NeoTokyo shouldn't be in here because it is based on a real place... Original in the sense means that it was created for this game and the direction it took did not change during the entire mod, the atmosphere, the art even the music and story are all fresh and unique. Sorry that I did not explain it well enough for you on the video.

+1 vote   reply to comment
razorb
razorb Jan 27 2010, 2:02pm replied:

lol... you see neotokyo built upon an already existing design and place.. they didnt just copy paste... and hell i didnt nominate that game.. or even mention it..

o·rig·i·nal
a. Not derived from something else; fresh and unusual
b. Showing a marked departure from previous practice; new: a truly original approach

and when you say original in the sense that it was made for this game? lol every nominee falls under that category... take a look... then you once again say it was fresh and unique? lol! how? what where please explain... i just dont see how you could say that ..
from what you are saying it sounds like this award should be renamed to "**** load of art created for a mod award"

+2 votes     reply to comment
AshtonAndersen
AshtonAndersen Jan 27 2010, 7:27pm replied:

This contest was suppose to be best Art direction, not who can make an old engine look good. Nothing against Out of hell, they did a fantastic job and congrats to them. But when I think of "Original Art" I think something such as the ball or Zeno clash based on a unique style.

+1 vote     reply to comment
iopzx
iopzx Jan 27 2010, 12:56pm replied:

I dont get it
why are they working on the hl1 engin tho there is a hl2 engine?

-1 votes     reply to comment
altercuca
altercuca Jan 27 2010, 1:07pm replied:

beacause thats how awesome that engine is!!!

+1 vote     reply to comment
Minuit
Minuit Jan 27 2010, 7:24pm replied:

I don't get it. Why are they working on the HL2 engine when there's the UT2004 engine? I don't get it. Why are they working on the UT2004 engine when there's the Cry Engine? I don't get it. Why are they working on the Cry Engine when there's the Dunia engine? I don't get it. Why are they working on the Dunia engine when there's the UT3 engine? I don't get it. Why are they working on the UT3 engine when there's the Cry Engine 2? I don't get it. Why are they using the Cry Engine 2 when there's the Cry Engine 3? I don't get it. Why are they waiting for the Cry Engine 3 when new technology will come in a year or so?

+4 votes     reply to comment
altercuca
altercuca Jan 27 2010, 8:50pm replied:

LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL

0 votes     reply to comment
altercuca
altercuca Jan 27 2010, 1:05pm says:

i told ya was gonna be out of hell!!!

+1 vote     reply to comment
JohnnyMaverik
JohnnyMaverik Jan 27 2010, 1:23pm says:

Zeno Clash has to win this one, what ever you think about the game in terms of plot, characters and gameplay, it looks superb, that is undeniable. Plus is looks unique, and considering the engine they used... well when I first played the demo I had no clue it was source.

+3 votes     reply to comment
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