Here is the first complete playthrough of the Babel prototype. Please watch with speakers on! It’s dialogue-heavy without a subtitle track. 

This Babel playable demo was created over the course of one month, although narrative writing and design consultation preceded this. Babel is a first-person psychological exploration game, set in dense and vertical urban environments, where culture shock and lucid dreams are endemic.

Its first outing was at Bento Miso’s Bit Bazaar Winter Market on Dec 7, 2013. 

Our timeline for this build:
2 weeks of preproduction: Script writing, script editing, level design, asset list, concept art, core systems
2 weeks of production: Voiceover recording, promotional printing materials, modelling assets, building the level, coding scripts, lighting, video editing

Tanya Kan - Creative Director, Lead Artist, Lead Writer
Rob Richard - Lead Programmer, A/V Editor, Designer
Mikki Benaglia - 3D Artist, Visual Development Artist
Blake Withers - 3D Artist

Just newly built on Dec 7th, 2013!

Here is the artwork from Babel’s first prototype, built in Unity and 3DS Max. Story and art driven, Babel was a challenging one month build because I had to ensure that the first chapter’s script was comprehensible to the world that I had to level design for, while keeping the artistic authenticity of East Asian urbanity. 

I had experimented with a painterly acrylic look to the art assets, a style that appealed not only to me but to all members of the team. Mikki Benaglia and Blake Withers modelled the NPC character and the exterior of the last greyish apartment in the game’s build. I designed the level and modelled everything else, including the streets, stairs, electronics, and other buildings. Rob Richard is the lead for programming, real-time deployment and optimization.

© Tanya Kan

Created a large format store-front display for Le Chateau Eaton Centre location using 3D rendering and design of a steam train. The main focus of my work was on texturing, composition, lighting, rendering, and post-processing in 3DS Max and Photoshop direct for print. Collaborative work with modeller and in-house graphic designer.

© Tanya Kan

Double Blind is an Oculus VR Jam game built in Unity 3D. Our team built it in less than a month for the Indiecade Oculus VR Jam. This video shows the entirety of the level in Unity as well as presentation clips of its design strategy. It has been showcased at Toronto’s Bento Miso and the Academy of the Impossible. 

Rob Richard - Lead Designer, Lead Programmer, Project Manager
Tanya Kan - Lead Artist
Andrew Kohan - Additional Art
Alex Alksne - Additional Programming

Double Blind is a project that first started in Aug 2013′s Indiecade/Oculus VR Slow Game Jam. It is a multiplayer PC first person game using the Oculus Rift Head-Up display. We were a team of four - two full time and two part time- and had three weeks to build a fully playable game with an interesting maze-like environment. As Lead Artist, I aimed to make the environment as immersive but with a hint of magical realism, but still maintaining a claustrophobic atmosphere. 

For the level, I created fully textured and baked modular structural meshes, including walls, floors, ceilings, ruins and props. I also compile artistic references and contributed to game design. Created and placed assets in a Unity scene according to Lead Designer’s graybox, with my custom shaders.

© Tanya Kan, Rob Richard of Verona Circle

This video is the first art demo for Babel, an original IP.

is a single-player 3D video game that encourages the player to explore and solve puzzles to piece together a complex, narrative-driven world. This world is set in an alternate-history, current-day Hong Kong. This vertically structured urban jungle will tell the story of a people with contrasting cultures and ideologies, with dreams of improving their social standings, coloured by their personal ethics and fears. As you search for a missing friend, you are drawn into a brewing discontent between an underground group claiming to speak on behalf of the people, and a conglomerate that owns most of the city.

I have since changed the art direction for this significantly, since I created this in a few days in time for an ideation roundtable with local game devs! It was first shown at Skillswap Toronto’s Design Critique Table, followed by Ryerson. Nonetheless, it shows some of the themes that I will be developing for, even though I will change the Engine from UDK to Unity.

© Tanya Kan

This is the first concept art that I did for Babel. It was at first just a vague idea in my head that I wanted to create an experimental video game about Eastern Asia and mass consumption, something similar to Dear Esther. I started the drawing in Hong Kong, specifically in the Wan Chai neighborhood. I finished it in Toronto. 

The promotional material was designed later, in December 2013, with artwork of the business card by David Kan. It was printed in time for Bit Bazaar Winter Market on Dec 7th. 

© Tanya Kan

Created from concept to UDK deployment by five post-grad Seneca students, “Wastes” evokes a survivalist shelter in a post-apocalyptic wasteland. Gritty details such as rifle parts laid out on a concrete table, a collapsed highway overpass, and the clutter of found objects suggest the hard-boiled man who lives there.

Assets are created in 3DS Max and zBrush, textured in Photoshop and nDo2, and placed into the UDK engine for realtime environment. We designed this showcase game environment within five weeks for pre-production pipeline arrangements and conceptual schematics, five weeks for production, and a week for post-production and cinematics.

Blake Withers - Art Director, Environment Modeller -
Tanya Kan - Producer, Environment Modeller -
Kolin “KC” Warren - World Builder, Environment Modeller -
King Mugabi - Environment Modeller -
Minh Nguyen - Environment Modeller -

Wastes is a fully realized environment running real-time in UDK. It is meant to be an art showcase piece rather than a gameplay environment. In a team of five, we created a post-apocalyptic environment from ideation to real-time deployment.

I played dual roles of Producer and Environment Modeller for this project. I had ensured the quality and timeliness of our art team to create a realtime interior environment, and advised on scale of work in cooperation with level designer, art director, and executive producer.

I was also independently in charge of the fire escape and bed living space assets. It is shown rendered in Marmoset independently, and in UDK within the overall level. 

© Tanya Kan

A parturition surgical bed and surgical lights for an atmospheric thriller showcase piece. Rendered real-time in UDK. Low-high poly process and my original concept art are shown in the latter two images. 

© Tanya Kan