Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2’s Neo-Noir Art Style Explained in Latest Dev Diary

Associate art director Ben Matthews elaborates on using the contrast between light and shadows in Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2.

Posted By | On 19th, Oct. 2023

vampire the masquerade bloodlines 2

Developer The Chinese Room has published a new dev diary for upcoming RPG Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2. This time around, the dev diary revolves around the game’s neo-noir art style, with commentary by associate art director Ben Matthews.

Through the use of the neo-noir art style, the studio hopes to make use of the contrasts of bright neon lights and the shadows they cast to paint a picture of the game’s setting of Seattle, and the dualities of the World of Shadow versus the World of Light.

“As an Elder thrust into a modern and unfamiliar world we’re playing on all of the visual elements of Neo-Noir to paint a picture of Seattle through the eyes of our Vampire,” says Matthews in the dev diary. “Contrast is very important to this visual identity in lots of different ways. A classic of Neo-Noir is light and dark. We use this to split the world into two.”

Matthews goes on to talk about how the neo-noir style helps The Chinese Room in game design. The studio will be making use of a cold colour pallet for the game’s darker places. Contrast is then added into the world by making use of warmer colours to bring life to parts of the world that are lit up.

While the Seattle setting of Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 isn’t a 1:1 scaled replica of the real-world city, Matthews has stated that the studio spent a lot of time in researching the city through Google Earth as well as real-life visits. Matthews also cites a number of inspirations for the game’s visuals, like the citysecapes of Nicolas Miller, the works of Nicolas Winding Refn, and even the movie John Wick.


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