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232 Heroes: The Character Art Production of 'Mortal Kombat 11'

Brendan George (Lead Character Artist, Netherrealm Studios)

Pass Type: All Access Pass, Core+Summits Pass, Core Pass - Get your pass now!

Format: Session

Vault Recording: TBD

Audience Level: All

The lack of pre-production time is an issue for many game developers. To continue to be profitable or to take advantage of a hit game and/or the investment into a title, games must continue to be supported past their release date. This talk focuses on character art development for Mortal Kombat 11, including art direction, character art production and the tools and techniques that were developed, that has enabled Netherrealm Studios to ship 232 hero quality characters in under 2 years. Brendan George the Lead Character Artist of Netherrealm Studios will present solutions which can help organize a team that pushes innovation and quality while constantly in production. The talk will discuss taking advantage of all the resources that may be available on the project and looking for the potential in each task to consolidate techniques, build tools, train artists, and optimize pipelines.


This talk discusses the importance of tool creation and building for predictability over quality peaks. Furthermore, it explains how to get more out of external resources, use mentorship for team development and minimize crunch via the marathon approach. The solutions presented may help the attendees to organize a team that can push innovation and quality while continuously in production.

Intended Audience

The talk is intended for those interested in art production on triple-A titles, including but not limited to art directors, producers and all levels of character artists. The talk contains relevant takeaways for both in-house developers and external support developers. Attendees should have a basic understanding of the terminology of character art development.