Activision Blizzard has announced the first 2022 quarterly update for Diablo IV is now live. In the update, Art Director Chris Ryder, Associate Art Director Brian Fletcher, Associate Lighting Director Ben Hutchings, Lead Exterior Environment Artist Matt McDaid, and Lead Props and Interactives Artist Chaz Head share how they approach each of the distinct areas in Diablo IV and how they come together to form the immersive environment art.
The darkest and most grounded of the series, Diablo IV strives for believability over realism in its environments. To do this, the team has established two foundational pillars to filter concepts, locations, and implementation: “old masters” and “a return to darkness”. Using these pillars, the environment has been created with a controlled use of detail and colour palettes to give a distinct visual style. Weather and physically-based lighting also play a larger role in creating the dangerous world of Sanctuary and allowing the atmosphere to feel more tangible.
For the first time in the series, Diablo IV features a shared open world with 5 captivating zones to explore. From the Dry Steppes to the Scosglen coast to the glacial ridges, each area has been carefully handcrafted by the Diablo Art and Design teams. Dynamic props populate many of these areas to breathe a sense of life into the architecture and terrain. Interactable and breakable props frequent many environments as the team has pushed themselves to create realistic and variable destruction.
Diablo IV also features over 150 randomized dungeons utilizing a combination of handcrafted and procedural creation. To make dungeon creation effective and flexible, the team set out to create a variety of tile-sets that could be cleverly reused and paired with different props, interactives, and lighting. To give tile-sets a natural feel, the tile-set transition scenes were created as a new feature to seamlessly transition between two tile-sets within the same dungeon.
Get the full details of the news update from this Diablo IV blog.