A lot of animation fans aren’t happy about films that use 3D CGI. It makes sense given that a lot of times the animators get lazy and instead of cutting out the filler frames between key frames in order to make the 3D animations look close to the likes of traditional 2D animation – sort of like what Arc System Works did for Guilty Gear Xrd – they just use basic key frames and fill in the rest, which creates a really lazy look. Well, Kamikaze Douga, Takashi Okazaki and Jumpei Mizusaki are attempting to make 3D trump 2D with their work on DC Entertainment’s Batman Ninja.
The upcoming collaborative project is due for release in 2018, where fans of the Batman will be able to experience a story that sees the Dark Knight traveling back in time to Feudal Japan in order to stop a plot from the Joker.
Like a typical Japanese anime, we get crazy samurai, over-the-top costumes, fast-paced battles, even mechs… because it’s not Japan without mechs. You can check out the trailer below from Film Trailer Zone.
I know a lot of people absolutely ragged on the new Berserk for its use of 3D CGI, but it looks much better here. I think a large part of it is because the cinematography is put to so much better use in Batman Ninja.
For one thing, they at least appear to have cut down on excess in-between frames for the key animations, which helps drastically in removing the terrible mechanical look that usually comes along with 3D animated projects when too many of the in-between frames are left in. Arc System Works was smart enough to remove those frames and have the animators focus solely on the key art so that it closely mimicked the kind of 2D animation process usually used in their older sprite-based titles.
That’s not to say that all of the in-betweens are gone – you can still clearly see the transitions in a couple of sequences, but overall the film looks really good. The tonal renders for the color palette also look fantastic, with some great contrasting inked outlines to really highlight the color grading.
Also, the design for the Joker looks pretty insane.
I’m curious how well they’ll be able to transition Batman into a time where people regularly lost their heads? Will he mortally wound his enemies? Will he lop off or dismember body parts? Or will he simply break some bones and leave the local medical crews to clean up the rest?
It’s a cool looking flick and it’s a shame we don’t get more games like this. Anyway, you can look for Batman Ninja to arrive in 2018.
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