Sylvari Week

#1 Edited by Jack_Lafayette (3855 posts) -

The long-awaited race-week is here with a load of concept art, dialogue snippets, lore, and of course the first appearance of the newly redesigned Sylvari. Here's the primer, straight from the source.
Kristen Perry on Designing and Redesigning the Sylvari
In my opinion it looks pretty much 1000% better than the old design. Also, the article is full of fantastically terrible puns (if that's your thing).
The Sylvari Soul - Angel McCoy on Writing the Sylvari
Not really relevant to the article, but fuck does that first screenshot look incredible.
Video: Growing the Sylvari
Sort of a summary of the last couple of days, but hey, everything looks better in motion.
Updated Sylvari race page (w/ new video)
Interesting lore bit about the Sylvari not being corruptible. And that environmental art is DOPE.
Dream and Nightmare
Just a good, old-fashioned, down-home, country-style lore dump. Plus an entertaining little story.

#2 Posted by Lotus (221 posts) -

Looks cool, but i dont PLANT to roll one, anyways, more info is always good.

#3 Posted by Jimbo (10280 posts) -

@Lotus said:

Looks cool, but i dont PLANT to roll one, anyways, more info is always good.

Leaf it out, dude.

#4 Posted by IamTerics (535 posts) -

I'd imagine they'd be the primary Ranger choice. Hearing about the new stuff always makes me excited and hopeful for a release date or window.

#5 Posted by TheHT (12670 posts) -

I wanna roll a Sylvari engineer. They look better than the previous incarnations, definitely. Still think they're a bit silly. But whatever, FANTASY.

#6 Edited by CornishRocker (405 posts) -

They look much more like plant-people now, not just humans with foliage attached to them.

The detail on anatomy is much better than the previous iteration of Sylvari, too, as if the whole person grew from one spot on the body.

Stumps up from me!

#7 Posted by Freezer_Burn (213 posts) -

It's time for all these puns to make like a tree, and get the fuck out of here.
Pretty cool read anyhow. Definitely an improvement over the old design.

#8 Posted by WinterSnowblind (7597 posts) -

Huge improvement over the old design, I really wasn't expecting anything so good. I especially love that guy with the bark-goatee.

But it's just nice that they don't simply look like humans with leafs and that they didn't go with a typical elf design. Caithe looks amazing now.

#9 Posted by Akrid (1391 posts) -

Very cool design! Don't really like the faces/colors though. Too bright and disney-esque.

#10 Posted by Bucketdeth (8235 posts) -

This looks like something I would see in Everquest 2.

#11 Posted by Jack_Lafayette (3855 posts) -
@Akrid said:
Very cool design! Don't really like the faces/colors though. Too bright and disney-esque.
If you mean bright as in color... well, they're plants. If you mean bright as in personality, they're supposed to be fairly innocent given the average age of the race.
#12 Edited by selfconfessedcynic (2743 posts) -


Very cool design! Don't really like the faces/colors though. Too bright and disney-esque.

Well, apparently you can dye these "skins". Perry goes on to say...

The summer skin, as you’ve seen, is very lush and leafy with a lot of different types of plant details making up the anatomy. But what about bark textures and shard edges? For this effect we will have a winter skin available which shows more bramble tendons, dried leaves, bark trunks, and gnarled roots woven throughout the body.

What of spring and autumn? Well, really, if you dye the summer skin yellow-green, orange, or brown, you really have the other two seasons covered.

So aside from the Winter Skin example of a brown Sylvari with a "beard", I wonder what else one could do with them - especially the results of dying the winter skin.

In any case - the Sylvarian Full Plate pictured in the blog post has taken the cup (top right in the link) - I'll be making a Sylvari Warrior as my first character.

Christ, I'm on the edge of becoming a Kristen Perry fanboy. I think she nailed it with this.

#13 Posted by RobbieMac (560 posts) -

Sylvari are looking great now!  Very intriguing race though I think I am going to still make an Asura.  Oh those witty little buggers, love em.

#14 Posted by WinterSnowblind (7597 posts) -

@selfconfessedcynic: The blog also mentioned a possibility of bioluminescent skin, which is what I assume those markings on Caithe's face are for. That is really awesome, especially as we've already seen things like ghostly weapons which glow eerily while it's dark. The sylvari should look pretty amazing in game, I can't wait for Gamescom.

#15 Posted by Vexxan (4627 posts) -

Looks cool, my first character will probably be a Sylvari.

#16 Posted by TheHT (12670 posts) -
@selfconfessedcynic: Those wooden dreadlocks are kinda of bad ass haha. The leaf ninja lady beside him looks cool too.
#17 Posted by selfconfessedcynic (2743 posts) -

@WinterSnowblind: Hell yeah - as long as they look like that and don't end up looking like Fable 2... But yes, cant wait to experiment. I'm looking forward to Gamescom for the PvP more than the character customization, but now that gap is closing.

@TheHT: : D - I agree. On both counts. Combine that with dying the leaves, and one could make a badass looking thief.

They're late on today's update - I don't see the Angel McCoy post anywhere...

#18 Posted by Seppli (11233 posts) -
#19 Posted by Seppli (11233 posts) -

I really want to see these models in motion wearing gear in the context of the actual gameworld. Gotta say those brownish barky  models kinda grow on me. Could see rolling such a Sylvari. The green ones... not so much.

#20 Edited by Tennmuerti (8520 posts) -

All that covered bush gave me wood.

#21 Posted by Tennmuerti (8520 posts) -

Great now I feel like a piece of shit.

or rather fertilizer



It's just too easy to reach for the lowest hanging fruit

/goes to sob in the corner

#22 Posted by Jack_Lafayette (3855 posts) -
@Tennmuerti: You need to think about what you've done.
#23 Posted by BabyChooChoo (5489 posts) -

Blah blah blah, plant people, blah blah blah. I want them to take my money. NOW.
But seriously, I'm loving the new design.

#24 Edited by selfconfessedcynic (2743 posts) -

@Tennmuerti said:

All that covered bush gave me wood.

We have a winner!

The new post is up - quite interesting. I have to say, I'm still not warming to some of their writing and voice work... The ideas are cool enough though.

#25 Posted by Meteora (5844 posts) -

Looks really cool and unique. Less humane to my disappointment, but I guess I'll have to slide since it looks much different than what most developers would create as "grass people" (which is basically green skinned people with some leaves slapped on).

#26 Posted by WinterSnowblind (7597 posts) -

@Meteora: Which is exactly what we had originally :P

I'm still impressed at their willingness to go back and completely scrap gameplay features/designs just to perfect them. Seems we'll be waiting forever to actually play the game at this rate though.

#27 Edited by JustKamToo (868 posts) -

Looking good, but I'm more of an Asura at heart.

#28 Posted by RobbieMac (560 posts) -
@WinterSnowblind: Though that might not be exactly a bad thing.  The game will probably being fantastic and end up having a large population years and years after its release (like WoW).  The beta will be out this year, so that is something to look forward to.
#29 Posted by Jack_Lafayette (3855 posts) -
@selfconfessedcynic said:

The new post is up - quite interesting. I have to say, I'm still not warming to some of their writing and voice work... The ideas are cool enough though.

Yeah, the VO is probably the most iffy thing about the game so far. Supposedly a metric ton of post-processing will fix it.
#30 Posted by Seppli (11233 posts) -

  Proper embed player provided...

#31 Posted by Seppli (11233 posts) -

Now it's just a week or so until we're finally gonna see them Sylvari and Asura in action. Not just standing around looking pretty and acting cute.
And PvP. Let's not forget PvP.

#32 Posted by Jack_Lafayette (3855 posts) -
@Seppli: Who's forgetting PvP? No one I want to know.
#33 Posted by TheHT (12670 posts) -

Seeing them move, I'm into it. So far they look awesome, can't wait to see them and the asura in action next week. As well as PvP. And player customization.

#34 Edited by Seppli (11233 posts) -

Here's the brandnew Sylvari Hometown video. Makes me want to squeeze a grapefruit with my fruitfucker.

#35 Posted by Funkydupe (3459 posts) -

They're going for an Avatar'ish atmosphere with this it seems like.

#36 Edited by selfconfessedcynic (2743 posts) -

Looking back after Gamescom, I was totally into Sylvari as a race until I saw them running around in every day settings wearing stock armors. IMO, the magic of the Sylvari was their uniqueness, but in regular armor sets, it's hard to tell that they're Sylvari at all - unless they're green.

In the actual game, I would assume that there would be many sylvari-styled armors obtained through PvE - but I don't think I'd want to play a race that is generic unless I go through the trouble of moving stats from armor to armor as I progress through the game. I may roll one eventually, once this kind of stuff is proven to not be an issue - but for now, I don't think I'll be playing as a green human any time soon.

On the other hand, after Gamescom, Asura look absolutely awesome - they are adorable and their animations are so lively / hilarious. I shall be finding the largest weapon designs in the game as to maximize the size humor. (the weapons scale, but the effect should be possible : D )

ED: Oh, and if they keep dying us hideous matte colours for PvP (instead of, say, giving us a subtle red outline or something), then it doesn't really matter how pretty your armour is.

#37 Posted by Jack_Lafayette (3855 posts) -
@selfconfessedcynic: I never really had a problem distinguishing the sylvari from other races in the videos. They had enough of a unique look, coloring scheme, and animation set that it was easy to tell them apart. As far as PvP armors go, I'm more concerned that the red highlight around selected blue players (when you're on the red team) might disorient a player in a high-intensity situation. I also hope that they allow some varied shades of red and blue dye in PvP, however.
#38 Edited by selfconfessedcynic (2743 posts) -

@Dark_Lord_Spam: I dunno man. For example, this video posted in the main thread. If that didn't say "Sylvari Guardian Female", I would have no idea what race (or to some extent, sex) that was.

As for the red outline, I was using that as an example - I meant that the red team would have a subtle red outline and the blue would have a subtle blue outline. IMO It would be just as effective and far less pervasive than tinting the whole armour blue/red. Oh, and on the minimap, it would be good if they made the dots for your team your colour instead of green. As for leaving it how it is and being allowed to adjust the dye of your colour, it's better than nothing, but still not what I would call optimal. I dont see the point of getting end game armor and making it just the way I like it if I can only show it off in PvE.

In any case - I'm now on the side of "not convinced" when it comes to the Sylvari. Of course, my only real reasoning for this is their armour, and not their character designs. That is still fine, it's just differentiation I'm worried about.

#39 Posted by Subjugation (4826 posts) -

I supposed once you learn how each race runs it won't really matter. I'm sure they are distinct. Possibly even different depending on gender? I'm just going off of my experience in WoW.

#40 Edited by selfconfessedcynic (2743 posts) -

@weeman105: Agreed - but then, I like being more obviously distinctive. Eg. Charr, Norn or Asura. I guess part of the problem is just the similarity in build shape of a Sylvari and a Human. Sure, that's part of the lore, but considering I'm pretty much duty bound to play a human as one of my first characters, I wouldnt mind some distinct differentiation.

In any case, they're still a cool race, just not as much of my style as I had thought they would be.

#41 Posted by Jack_Lafayette (3855 posts) -
@selfconfessedcynic: It'll probably be easier to tell them apart from humans on release, when everyone who makes a sylvari will choose the most outlandish hair/skin color combinations they can think of. Their color selection at character creation is pretty much a goddamn rainbow. Plus, most of the people I've seen who want to create one say that they'll choose a wood/branch hairstyle, which look more distinct in action than the leaf hairs.
#42 Edited by selfconfessedcynic (2743 posts) -

@Dark_Lord_Spam: True enough. I know I sure will if I make one. I want branches and shit. Coming out of my head.

But mainly, I want to see what kind of armour Anet has in store for Sylvarians.

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