Racial appearance

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Character racial appearance

We want there to be a lot of room for people to manifest their own identity, to role play how they want to from an appearance standpoint. There's going to be parameters within which you will be able to customize a character. We want the culture and the identity of the races to exist in a range that makes them easily identifiable from other players and other cultures. So, because of that, we have to have a spectrum you can exist on. There will be a lot of hair variants you can do, body art tattoos that you can apply. You'll be able to play with the scales of the facial structure, the bones, the height, width, the body fat percentage. You'll be able to add body hair on different parts of the body. If you want to have hair on your feet, you can dial that up.[3]Steven Sharif

Character appearance can be customized in the character creator (CC)[4] and via in-game salons/barbershops.[5]

  • Character models are focused on realism.[6]
  • A player will see a generic character before customization.[7]
  • Player can adjust their character to be overweight, skinny, muscular.[8]
  • Character designs will have influences from a wide range of cultures, such as European, African and Asian.[9]
  • Lolis will not be in the game.[10]

Sliders will offer flexibility in customization.[11]

  • Hair variants.[3]
    • Can add hair on different parts of the body.
  • Body art.[3]
  • Facial structure.[3]
  • Bone structure.[3]
  • Height.[3]
    • You can't have a one inch tall character.[12]
  • Width.[3]
  • Body fat percentage.[3]

Adjustments will allow a character to appear more feminine or masculine.[13]

  • Brow height.[13]
  • Chin.[13]
  • Hair.[13]
  • Facial hair.[14]
    • Female Dwarven beards will not match that of the male. It will be more of a braided option that is not as voluminous.[3]
    • Facial hair is characteristic of the Dünir, not the Niküa.[3]
  • Body type.[13]
  • There will be "boobie sliders".[12]
    • These are relative to the character's race.
    • The scale is not going to be ridiculous.

Character appearance is able to be saved to hard disc.[15]

Character creator

The character creator (or character customization screen) allows players to define the look of their character in Ashes of Creation.[17]

We're gonna have a wide array of character customization out of the box.[18]

If I had to give a comparison, I would use BDO as an example of what our Character Creation is going for.[19]

A character's voice may be able to be selected from preset options.[20]

There is a chance that the character creator may be released before Alpha-1.[21]

Dünir dwarven appearance

Facial hair is characteristic of the Dünir, not the Niküa.[3]

Female Dwarven beards will not match that of the male. It will be more of a braided option that is not as voluminous.[3]

Tulnar appearance

Tulnar silhouettes.[22]

Tulnar is the only race with the capability to adjust racial appearance in a significant manner.[23]

  • Tulnar race does not have sub-types, instead, players will be able to customize the appearance of Tulnar characters.[24]
  • Players will have dials to adjust the reptilian, mammalian, humanoid, and other attributes of their Tulnar character in the Character creator.[25]
  • Tulnar do not equal furries.[26]
    • There are bestial components that can be scaled up when creating a Tulnar character.[26]

Tulnar do not equal furries, but there are definitely some bestial components that you can scale up when you're creating your Tulnar character, so you could max that setting I guess. Whether or not that would give you what you would think of as a furry, I guess it's going to be up to your interpretation of what a Furry is.[26]Steven Sharif

Artistic style

Ashes of Creation will have a higher graphical fidelity than most western games. It will not be too stylized or "cartoony".[27]

We can push the limits a little bit on the graphical fidelity, especially using Unreal Engine 4... My desire was not to see very cartoony games. I'm not a big fan of highly stylized art.[27]Steven Sharif

Artistic influences on the races

You will see in the different races that are available from a player character standpoint a lot of different influences that reflect many cultures in the world: Not just European, not just Africa, not Mesoamerican. These cultures are going to be present in many of the races.[34]Steven Sharif

The idea is just to find a base component in the real world as a starting point and then to begin to fantasize.[29]Steven Sharif

Weapon and armor appearance

Weapons and armor are not race locked, but armor will take on a racial appearance.[36][37]

The customization of equipment per race is really focused on Armor sets not Weapon props. Weapon props will, from a model standpoint, will translate pretty one-to-one across the races.[38]Steven Sharif

Let's say for example you have the Eagle set or something, right: The Eagle set has in art, it has a thematic design that's going to include certain attachments to the armor. It's going to include color palette and theme. It's going to have some aspects to it that define it as the Eagle set, right. When a Elf wears the Eagle set or when an Orc wears the Eagle set, you obviously have two different cultures there; and you don't want to stomp out that culture by assigning a de facto 'This is the Eagle set and this is how it looks on everybody.' What we want to have is cultural influences play a role in showing how that set looks.[38]Steven Sharif

When you say, what if I'm an Orc but want to look like an Elf and I want my Eagle set to be the Elf representation? Well the issue becomes there that you know Orcs have a different organic model. You know, their body is different than that of the Elf. So, from a scope-creep standpoint, it's one thing to add different influences that represent the cultures that are donning the armor; it's another thing to adapt each influence as a matrix that can be worn pretty much by everything. From a scope perspective, that's a very difficult task for the character artists to kind of tackle. So instead what we've done is, in order to facilitate a variety of cultural representation between the races but allow for the sharing of assets like different armor sets, we give different representations of those armor sets to each race.[39]Steven Sharif

Ashes of Creation Apocalypse modular armor

Kaelar base level Ashes of Creation Apocalypse robe set.

You can kind of start to see like some of the components that we put together that we can mix and match and kind of make new armors from. This is kind of like the base chassis for all of that.[40]Jeffrey Bard

This is what we call our t-shirt and pants. So this gives you a perfect example of just how the most basic you'll ever look in alpha. So even our most basic look, we're really trying to bring it and put a lot of detail in it.[41]Mat Broome

Empyrean level 20 (tier 3) plate armor.[42]
Kaelar level 20 (tier 3) plate armor.[43]

Your base look for the character can be pretty boring, but what Steven gave us a challenge with from day one was to make sure even the base look, the t-shirt and pants, looked amazing... This is your zero character, if you will... Then you can go in and customize everything from the shoulder pads to the elbow pads, the belt that goes around them; do you want duel belts, you want to harness the clothes in the front. So every piece you see on here you can actually customize that at the front end. So what we do is we scale that up from zero, ten and twenty... We scale it up and we customize it; and then I want to really stress that each one of those looks as you progress is different. We're not just repurposing the same armor pieces. We're making unique sets that complement each other as you progress.[40]Mat Broome

Ashes of Creation Apocalypse will have three different armor themes: Plate, leather and robe.[41]

You can actually have three different types of themes: You have plate, you'll have leather and you'll have robe. So for every armor set that we're showing at each one of those tiers, you're actually gonna have nine unique looks to pick from.[41]Mat Broome

Racial influence on node development

Racial architecture styles in an Alpha-0 village node. Empyrean Elven influence (top). Kaelar Human influence (bottom).[44]

The layout and architecture within a Node’s development area are determined by influential race. For example, a stage 3 Node with the majority of player contribution being Py’rai would have a Py’rai village with Py’rai architecture. Most NPCs would be Py’rai elves, and offer questlines within the Py’rai narrative.[45]Margaret Krohn

Each player’s contributed experience is flagged with their character race and other identifiers. When a Node advances, the race with the highest experience contribution determines the Node’s style and culture. This style and culture change can happen at every Node Stage. For example, if a Node advances to Level 2 - Encampment Stage and 51% of all experience was earned by Ren’Kai players, the Node will be a Level 2 Ren’Kai Node. If that same Node advances to a Level 3 - Village Stage Node, but the Py’Rai contributed 62% of all the experience earned, then the Node will be a Level 3 Py’Rai Node. Cultural influences bring more than just the aesthetic and storyline changes - benefits are granted to the dominant culture within that Node’s Zone of Influence.[46]Margaret Krohn

Node layout and style is determined by several factors:[47]

Some parts are determined by the area it's in. Some parts are determined by the type it is. Some parts are determined by the race it is; and then the rest of it is determined by the mayor.[47]Jeffrey Bard

All nodes whether they're associated with a castle or associated with normal node structure has cultural influences that replicate over to the buildings that are produced and the NPCs that are present.[50]Steven Sharif

There is an attrition mechanic that affects experience and influence to curb a single race from dominating the entire world.[51]

There is an attrition and that attrition on experience and influence is heightened based on the performance of the race in the world. So if all these nodes are Orc nodes then their attrition rate is very high to compete with the cultural establishment of new nodes because they have more influence in the world and a popular opinion is against them in their outlying regions that they do not have influence in.[51]Steven Sharif

Starting areas

Each race has their own starting area (starting zone), featuring a divine gateway.[52] The exception to this is the Tulnar, who have a starting area without a divine gateway.[53]

Players will be able to choose their starting Divine gateway.[54] This choice is not restricted by race.[53]

There will be small NPC settlements at the starting areas. These represent scouts that were sent ahead of the main expedition back to Verra. These settlements are designed to acclimatize new players entering the world.[55]

Starting areas have some distance between them.[53]

A problem that a lot of MMOs have is that those starting areas become just kind of vacant of players and it's so sad because the greatest aspect of an MMO is that community that you get to experience, so one of the great things about the node system is that it really works from new player acquisition standpoint, where these nodes tend to develop larger near the starting location areas around the world; and it brings these players back to those locations if they're citizens and want services within those cities. So, as new players enter the world they're going to actually be surrounded most likely by more population because people are coming back to those larger nodes.[56]Steven Sharif

Tulnar starting area

AshesOfCreation 69.jpg

Tulnar have a starting area that does not involve a divine gateway.[53]

Unlike the other races, the Tulnar won’t be returning to Verra, instead they will be returning to the surface for the first time in generations.[57]

Racial mounts

Each race has a unique mount.[58]

See also


  1. Livestream, 16 October 2017 (15:18).
  2. Ashes of Creation - The visuals.
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 Livestream, 8 April 2018 (PM) (13:39).
  4. Livestream, 8 may 2017 (47:35).
  5. Livestream, 15 May 2017 (51:19).
  6. Livestream, 30 june 2017 (11:21).
  7. Livestream, 30 june 2017 (10:04).
  8. Livestream, 30 june 2017 (10:27).
  9. Livestream, 30 june 2017 (12:39).
  10. Lollis.jpg
  11. Livestream, 30 june 2017 (13:13).
  12. 12.0 12.1 Livestream, 24 May 2017 (48:45).
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 Livestream, 22 May 2017 (54:32).
  14. beards.jpg
  15. Livestream, 24 May 2017 (28:22).
  16. Livestream, 30 june 2017 (9:28).
  17. Livestream, 30 June 2017 (09:43).
  18. Livestream, 8 May 2017 (48:49).
  19. character creator BDO.png
  20. Livestream, 26 May 2017 (53:40).
  21. Livestream, 26 July 2019 (1:10:44).
  22. Livestream, 30 May 2017 (16:51).
  23. Livestream, 28 July 2017 (20:17).
  24. Livestream, 30 June 2017 (15:10).
  25. Livestream, 23 August 2017 (31:29).
  26. 26.0 26.1 26.2 Livestream, 8 April 2018 (AM) (3:12).
  27. 27.0 27.1 Interview, 20 October 2018 (2:17:43).
  28. Interview, 20 October 2018 (2:28:08).
  29. 29.0 29.1 Interview, 20 October 2018 (3:47:17).
  30. Livestream, 16 October 2017 (15:58).
  31. 31.0 31.1 31.2 Interview, 11 May 2018 (1:03:21).
  32. py'rai archetecture.jpg
  33. Podcast, 11 May 2018 (31:35).
  34. Interview, 11 May 2018 (1:04:27).
  35. Livestream, 26 July 2019 (54:06).
  36. Livestream, 26 May 2017 (44:11).
  37. Livestream, 26 May 2017 (20:46).
  38. 38.0 38.1 38.2 Podcast, 4 August 2018 (53:43).
  39. 39.0 39.1 Podcast, 4 August 2018 (55:17).
  40. 40.0 40.1 Livestream, 17 August 2018 (20:19).
  41. 41.0 41.1 41.2 Livestream, 17 August 2018 (22:59).
  42. Livestream, 17 August 2018 (22:33).
  43. Livestream, 17 August 2018 (22:58).
  44. Livestream, 9 February 2018 (33:50).
  45. Blog - Know Your Nodes - The Basics.
  46. Blog - Know Your Nodes - Advance and Destroy.
  47. 47.0 47.1 47.2 47.3 47.4 47.5 Livestream, 27 September 2018 (53:06).
  48. 48.0 48.1 Interview, 11 May 2018 (54:34).
  49. Livestream, 26 May 2017 (21:23).
  50. 50.0 50.1 Interview, 11 May 2018 (47:27).
  51. 51.0 51.1 Interview, 11 May 2018 (1:00:19).
  52. Livestream, 19 May 2017 (29:25).
  53. 53.0 53.1 53.2 53.3 Livestream, 16 October 2017 (53:58).
  54. starting gateway.png
  55. Livestream, 28 July 2017 (25:20).
  56. Video, 5 April 2018 (40:08).
  57. Livestream, 17 May 2017 (5:49).
  58. racial mounts.jpg