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City of Heroes Skins Are Not Equal to Freedom Force Skins

City of Heroes "Superman"

City of Heroes "Superman"

So I was browsing the web, minding my own business when I came across this article comparing Freedom Force skinning with other games (namely City of Heroes). While I have not skinned anything for City of Heroes, it seems strikingly obvious skinning for City of Heroes is like skinning for the Sims. I’m not sure if it an quality thing or if people just don’t bother to create custom 3d models for new skins but it just seems like you choose colors, upload images for logos, and pick through a list of pre-existing meshed pieces to me.

While most new Freedom Force content makers dream of something like this, it really doesn’t involve much originality or craftsmanship. The best comparison I can think of it is comparing a hand drawn original design character with one generated on HeroMachine. They both take some level of imagination but the skill and technique involved couldn’t be further apart. HeroMachine characters look generic and given the right choices, anyone could reproduce the same design. That’s not what Freedom Force skinning is about nor would it be simple. It is about capturing a certain look or design with the use of custom models, image editing software, and, most important, style.

A good example of this is Superman. He is probably the most skinned superhero in the Freedom Force community, yet every skin of Superman is fundamentally different. To explain visually what I mean, I’ve displayed my Superman, Gryphon’s Superman, and Courtnall6’s Superman skin together.

Example of Freedom Force Skinning

Example of Freedom Force Skinning

While they are all excellently skinned, the differences are what makes them stand a part. If all of our Supermen looked the same what would be the point of each of us doing one or anyone else from doing one in the future?

Maybe I’m coming off as a skinning elitist (which I have been called many times before) but I don’t think I am. I just know exactly how much time and love goes into my craft. So knowing people just lump my work in with lower forms of it just really offends me. I imagine high quality 3d modellers feel the same about me and I honestly don’t have a problem with that because they’re right. I don’t have the technically skills in 3ds Max or Maya but I am pretty good at Photoshop and Nif Skope. I had to learn skills and techniques to get to the level I’m at now instead of just clicking colors and pasting on logos. Either way, I think the writer was uninformed and he used a lot of my friend’s, The Ultimate Evil, work without so much as crediting him. If you ask me he’s the one infringing someone’s work.

2 Responses

  1. what the hell, i can’t even see a contact to speak to them

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