Chapter 14: Ma Yang’s Job
Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
Pei Qian had already thought it through that since he wanted to clash with Qute Three Kingdoms, he could only go with the three kingdoms theme.
However, the three kingdoms theme in itself was a mix of different IPs and it wasn’t something that was too great or bad.
If he wanted gamers to hate the three kingdoms characters, the best way to do it would be through modification; to completely destroy their traditional images!
That way, gamers who like the three kingdoms would definitely complain about the horrendous changes, steering clear of the game while lowering the reputation of the game.
That important task of modification would be handed over to Ma Yang.
Pei Qian was completely confident given Ma Yang’s capabilities – as long as Ma Yang were to work on it earnestly, he would definitely be able to screw it up!
When he saw the names of the characters, Ma Yang frowned.
He looked down from the upper bunk and whispered, “Brother Qian, I… I’ve only watched the television series for the three kingdoms. There’s a lot of people here whom I don’t even know…”
Pei Qian skipped with joy internally – wasn’t that for the best?
If you knew the characters of the three kingdoms with the back of your palms, I would be worried to hand this task to you instead!
“Don’t worry, I believe in you. The main point’s to overhaul tradition anyways. Feel free to let your creative juices flow. The bigger the changes, the greater!”
“Also, don’t worry about how the images are going to come out. That will have to depend on the artist’s design as well. You’re just providing the direction.”
“Just feel free to open up the design since it was never fixed to begin with. No one is going to pick on mistakes made from general knowledge.”
Pei Qian continued persuading him.
He did not wish for Ma Yang to back down from the difficulty and end up returning the task to him.
Ma Yang finally nodded. “Alright then, I’ll try my best.”
Still worried, Pei Qian added, “Remember, it must be a complete overhaul! The more ridiculous, the better!”
Ma Yang sat on his bed and started scratching his ears and cheeks.
After enduring for 10 minutes, there was still no progress.
Finally, he couldn’t take it anymore as he popped his head out. “Brother Qian, should I go and buy Romance of the Three Kingdoms first…”
Pei Qian stopped him right away. “No! Absolutely not! Your creative spirit is what I was looking for, get it? Right now, you’re completely unaffected by the influence of Romance of the Three Kingdoms and that’s exactly why you can overhaul the design entirely!”
“Don’t start worrying about how the original image should be like! Just use your imagination as best as you can and modify as much as you can!”
“Alright,” Ma Yang replied in a resigned tone before shirking his head back and continuing to ponder over it.
After a moment, he extended his head and asked once more, “Brother Qian, can I design Guan Yu as a dragon? Will that do?”
Pei Qian nodded his head. “Sure!”
“Brother Qian, I’ll make Ma Chao a centaur. Will that do?”
Yet another while later.
“Brother Qian, I’ll set Zhou Cang as a dragon lady and Zhuge Liang as an inventor! Huang Yueying will be a robot puppet while Xu Chu’s a tiger! Cao Pi will be a tentacle monster and Lu Meng will be a dragon slaying lolita! Will that do?”
Pei Qian slapped his thighs. “Yes! Of course! Old Ma, you’re a genius, you know that? Just continue along those lines!”
Ma Yang was initially skeptical of his own work. However, Pei Qian’s affirmation had ignited his confidence.
Looking at how seriously Ma Yang was taking his work, flowers blossomed in Pei Qian’s heart.
He hadn’t found the wrong person!
Setting Zhou Cang as a dragon lady and Lu Meng as a dragon slaying lolita?
Look at the sort of talented drivel this was!
That was something that Pei Qian definitely would not have been able to come up with himself!
Once he finds a cheaper artist to screw up the designs of a proposal that’s completely unreliable from the get go, there’s no way the game’s original art could be bearable to watch!
Imagine when gamers draw Cao Pi only to find out that he’s a tentacle monster…
Drawing Ma Chao to find out that he’s a centaur…
Drawing Lu Meng to find out that this great general had turned into a dragon slaying lolita…
Wasn’t this something that fans who loved the three kingdoms series would flame?
Some famous international star had once claimed, “Making and adapting films from history isn’t to destroy the source recklessly.”
But this was precisely to destroy it recklessly! Once this game comes out, the masses are going to spurn it and the three kingdom fans would be weeping endlessly!
Pei Qian’s past couple of dazed days were swept clean as he felt his future turning bright once more!
Losing 300,000 to earn 300,000!
Pei Qian could envision a beautiful life beckoning towards him!
Seizing the opportunity while Ma Yang was filling up the form, Pei Qian checked out the artists on the resource website.
ESRO’s resource website compiled all the resources for games domestically, including manpower.
Be it designers, artists or programmers, one could provide their services on the resource website with a price.
The buyers could check out the past works of the freelancers and if they were pleased with what they saw, they could negotiate a partnership.
For example, how many original art pieces of an artist they wanted to purchase.
Pei Qian filtered out the artists that specialized in original arts and began the elimination process swiftly.
All of the famous artists were eliminated.
All of the artists with a better reputation were eliminated.
He focused on searching for his artist amongst the newcomers who were selling their original arts for around 700 yuan each!
After looking through multiple examples of various artists, Pei Qian realized that they all seemed similar.
There was a barrier of entry to the resource website so it wasn’t a place where any random art student could make a post on.
ESRO’s personnel would conduct a vetting process and hence, any newcomer artists that could list their services would have a decent foundation in sketching at the very least.
Pei Qian searched back and forth and finally decided on a newcomer artists who had not much to display in his portfolio.
The artist’s portfolio consisted of 2D cute style designs and there wasn’t any realistic aspects to it.
That was a clear sign that he must not be good at drawing realistic designs which was what Pei Qian wanted for his game!
“He’s the one!”
Pei Qian decided on the spot!
But of course, Pei Qian couldn’t settle on a single artist – there were too many original art pieces he wanted.
Some card games would want their original arts to be designed so exquisitely it looked like a poster. For something like that, even an experienced artist would take an entire week to complete it.
For Pei Qian’s requirement, he just wanted the original art to be a card on a mobile screen. Because of that, the quality could be lowered greatly. However, even under the circumstances that the artist is capable and he puts in quite a bit of effort, that would take around two days to complete.
Meaning to say, an artist who slogs tirelessly for an entire month without any regard for the quality level would at most be able to produce 15 pieces of original art.
Of course, when Pei Qian said he wanted 200 pieces, it did not mean 200 completely different original arts.
There were only 50 characters. Each of them would have four original arts representing different stars.
Take Zhuge Liang for example. Getting from one star to four stars would just change some details and special effects – it isn’t a complete character redesign.
Therefore, each character would form a complete set with their four different original arts.
Even then, with a safe estimate, Pei Qian would require around seven artists to ensure that the content is completed on time.
He decided to start negotiating prices with an artist before looking for the rest.
“Hi, our company is preparing to produce a mobile card game and we want to mass order custom-made original arts. I would like to discuss with you about the prices and completion timeline. If you’re interested, please reply.”
Pei Qian left a message for that artist named Ruan Guangjian. He waited for a couple of minutes and received no response before concluding that the other party should be offline.
Pei Qian was in no rush since Ma Yang should only be done with the requirement form by the next day.
Checking the time, Pei Qian saw that it was already night and his stomach was growling.
“Old Ma, shall we go eat?”
Pei Qian got down from the bed and looked at Ma Yang on the upper bunk.
Ma Yang was still in the midst of squeezing his creative juices while tapping on the keyboard – the requirement form was already filled with chunks of texts.
“… You don’t have to get that serious. Let’s go and eat,” Pei Qian said.
Even though Ma Yang was still engrossed in work, he was indeed hungry as well as he leapt off the bed.
“Canteen?” Ma Yang asked.
Pei Qian shook his head and patted his chest. “No, let’s head out to eat today! My treat!”
10 minutes later.
The attendant served a bowl of ramen and a plate of egg fried rice, placing it before the both of them.