Naraka: Bladepoint - Asian Games
January 2nd 2024
Naraka: Bladepoint is back! Following our award-winning shorts Crimson & Winter and Showdown, and trailer for the Naraka Championship international esports tournament, Netease approached us once again, this time to produce a supercharged mixed-media sporting showcase featuring the game’s heroes furiously competing in eleven events, all disciplines at the concurrent real life Asian Games taking place in Hangzhou, China.
The brief called for Naraka’s most iconic characters to do battle in the sporting arena in a blistering mash-up of live action, 3D CG characters, traditional Chinese-style ink animation and paper-cut stop-motion.
The film seeks to shed light on familiar events like Squash, Dragon Boat, and Ju-jitsu, as well more obscure disciplines, like Kabaddi, Kurash, and Sepaktakraw, with each scene accompanied by information about the sport’s origin and history in the Asia-wide competition.
The 2023 Asian Games were particularly notable for video gamers, as the first in which e-sports have been included among the 40 disciplines, with players of the martial arts driven Naraka: Bladepoint no doubt paying special attention to the real life Wushu event.
With a challenging range of techniques centered around action-packed 3D character animation, we drafted the versatile skillset of award-winning powerhouse, Zombie, and director Paulo Garcia.
Authenticity was key for all aspects of the project. We studied extensive reference of each sport to ensure we were getting the specific actions and moves spot on. Naraka is predominantly a Wushu title, so we worked particularly closely with the client to nail those scenes, sharing references, and acting out moves over con-calls.
With the Asian Games taking place in Hangzhou in 2023, the film needed a distinctly Chinese flavour. That gave us the chance to explore not one, but two traditional art styles, namely ink style, and paper cut.
The latter was particularly exciting, giving us a rare opportunity to get physical and animate in hand-made stop motion. We had fun throwing in a lot Chinese elements and easter eggs about Hangzhou into the 2D sections.
Naraka: Bladepoint is a battle royale PC game launched in August 2021 by 24 Entertainment under technology company NetEase. Taking place against the backdrop of the battle between two ancient gods, the game tells the story of heroes from across the world coming to the legendary Morus Isle to compete for the immortal mask.
Naraka: Bladepoint: Asian Games | Behind-the-Scenes
Client: 24 Entertainment, Netease
Executive Producers: Wu Zong, Yu Yu, Ma Xiaobo
Art Directors: Sun Jun, Qiu Min, Ma Xiaobo
Production Coordinator: Wu Zong, Xu Wenqian
Production Company: Final Frontier
Executive Producer: Chris Colman, Gus Karam, Julieta Zajaczkowski, Eric Zheng
Executive Creative Director: Claus Cibils
Project Manager: Ella Wang, Yeeman Lin
Head of Production: Mary Antonieta Lopez
Creative Team: Agustina Kröl, Natalia Fernandez, Sid Osna
Sound Design: Facu Capece
Production: Zombie Studio
Director: Paulo Garcia
Executive Producer: Natalia Gouvea
Executive Creative Director: Daniel Salles
Producer Director: André Carvalho
Art Director: André Zendron
CGI Director: Leandro Marcelino CGI Technical Director: Wesley Oliveira
CGI Technical Consultant: Isaac Buzzola
Agenda Coordinator: Kira Nayana
Account Services: Gabriela Leal, Stephanie Wang
Storyboard and Animatic: Saulo Brito
Concept Artist: André Zendron, Anna Caiado, Katan Walker, Ricardo Riamonde
Lookdev: Claudio Junior, Giovanni Kososki, Ricardo Alves, Camilo Franco, Lélio Alves, Alexandre Trevisan
Lighting: Letícia Fagundes, Claudio Junior, Giovanni Kososki
Model: Raul Sales, Ricardo Alves, Alisson Perin, Vitor Semeguhini, Camilo Franco, Enrique Pedretti
Environment: Ale Barbosa
VFX: Gabriel Marcondes, Lucas Amaral, Marco Melantonio, Sacha Carletti
Rig: Marcos Leite 3D Animation Supervisor: Alex Ferreira Simões
Technical Animation Supervisor: Gustavo Figueiredo 3D Animation: Alex Ferreira Simões, Jeffry Syahputra, Lucas Barbosa, Leonardo Krause, Alejandro Mozqueda Torres, David Herfindahl, Nabeel Ahmed, Rodrigo Souza, Yeesang Khet, Jackson Yeoh, Benny Davis, Elena Velasco
2D Animation Director: Bruno Brasil
2D Animation: Bruno Cursino, Cris Barros, Fhilipe Marmori, Denise Bargos, Geff Silva, Filipe Emerson, Genovis Pagani Filho, Gustavo Carvalho, Hugo Takahashi, Issao Nakabachi, João Paulo, Lucas Flores, Mateuz Fernandes, Raul Vanussi, Robério Reis, Robson Vilalba, Thiago Baggins, Ulisses Jucá Composition: Letícia Fagundes, Isabela Ferrari, Leanndro Amorim, Rafael Medrado, Claudio Bueno Assembler: Alisson Perin, Enrique Pedretti, Carol Nicolletti, Matheus Lopes
Paper Art Producer: Gabriela Leal
Paper Art: Fabiana Fukui, Ligia Mie Jeon, Simone Pinheiro
Paper Art Animation: Erica Valle
Paper Art Director of Photography: André de Souza
Paper Art 1° Camera Assistant: Bruno Moya
Paper Art Logger: Juliana Charleux
Paper Art Gaffer: Hassan Shahateet
Motion Graphics: Vinicius Kahan, Felipe Frazão
Color Grade: Psycho N’ Look
Art Designer: Kaike Gouvea
Financial: Alessandra Cena
TI: Gabriel Paixão, Rodolfo Cultiz