For this week’s Developer Workshop, we’re delving into this scene from the background of Cecyl, one of the playable Heroes in The Songweave Tapestry.


This scene is depicting the lever moment of Cecyl’s story, which you can read about in his Character Introduction. Cecyl chose to place his loyalty to the Holy Order of the Korabyllus above everything–above family, country, creed or personal interest–and it’s all coming crashing down in this confrontation.


At its heart, this scene is all about drama and emotion, and our team wanted the illustration to show Cecyl standing alone before his peers. That idea really framed the challenge of bringing this to life.

In the first picture here, you can see how our team set Cecyl in front of a sea of faces. We needed this mass of people to essentially be a character itself, the community that Cecyl is rejecting.

So how did we make the background a character?

Well, in the second picture, we added another balcony tier to offset Cecyl’s bolder look. In the next image, we added details to the walls and more people into the crowd. In each new version, the crowd blends together more until they all meld together into one cohesive unit.


The most interesting challenge we had with this scene was properly introducing colour to it all. Both Cecyl and his environment feature white and blue as their primary colours. To truly set them apart, we had to get extra creative by playing with shading and saturation between the foreground and background. We even tweaked the shapes of some things like the banner length to help create more contrast.


When Cecyl tears the holy symbol from his staff, he’s tearing out the heart of his being. What you see here is everything in that moment: the anger, the loss, but also the triumph of taking a stand.

Cecyl’s Lore Archive story written by Eric Weiss follows not long after this moment and sets up Cecyl’s new path to self-discovery. When you understand what Cecyl lost and gained in the moment of abandoning the Holy Order of the Korabyllus, you see why he’s hesitant to ally himself with anything or anyone.