Ubisoft holds first exhibition on video game art

VIRTUAL WORLD: Concept art of Chinatown in Ghost Recon Online. Each concept art shows a design concept that helps inspire the game development. (Image courtesy of Ubisoft Singapore)

Ubisoft Singapore’s first art exhibition, Art in Video Games, took place on Nov 8 and 9, 2013 at the FZD School of Design to showcase the work of the studio’s artists on Assassin’s Creed 4 Black Flag and Ghost Recon Online games.

Mr Mufizal Mokhtar, Art Director for Ubisoft Singapore, said that this art exhibition is a great opportunity for Ubisoft Singapore to show what goes on inside the studio from the conceptual ideas to actual gameplay in game products. “Art in video games is a great opportunity for the fans to see what they normally can’t see behind the studios in Ubisoft,” he said.

The concept art is also the best way to bring out the design idea concept to the entire team as it factors in everything from the background visual settings to the lighting, which is critical in producing a game. “The concept art serves to inspire everyone on the floor,” said Mr Mufizal.

Besides the exhibition, two workshops showing how concept art is created for Ubisoft’s games took place on November 9, 2013. Mr Mufizal said these workshops are beneficial and inspiring to aspiring artists out there as it shows the thought processes that go through the art team during the design process.

Mr Marlo Flor, Ubisoft’s Art Director for multi-player action video game Ghost Recon Online, said that research from real-life technology is important when designing items in Ghost Recon Online and that his team drew inspiration from existing prototypes like a microwave technology currently being used by the U.S. military.

Singaporean artists are also being engaged by Ubisoft Singapore in the development of popular titles like Assassin’s Creed. “We do engage local talent,” said Mr Ian Ng Siong Yoong, Production Manager of Assassin’s Creed 4 Black Flag. “There is a strong talent pool of artists here in Singapore.”

Mr Ng said that Ubisoft Singapore is always looking for talented artists to join their studios and that exhibitions like Art in Video Games helps to build awareness of the process of creating a video game and draw interested people into the industry.