Case Study: King Arthur Pendragon Twitch Branding

By 17 November, 2016 No Comments

I’ve worked with Steven Lumpkin in the past for this own branding. He approached me after my panel at TwitchCon and asked about my availability to work on a upcoming role playing how that he wanted to create. We picked up over Skype a few days after TwitchCon and got to work on the spot on the King Arthur Pendragon Twitch Branding.

King Arthur Pendragon Twitch Branding Brief

The approach to this project was pretty straightforward in terms of the scope. King Arthur Pendragon is a role playing game where the players take the role of knights performing chivalric deeds in the tradition of Arthurian legend.

What Steven needed was a logo that could reflect not only that but also the darker elements that we wanted to bring forward. Of course there was also a need for overlays that went with the same theme.


King Arthur Pendragon Twitch Branding Moodboard


Steven, as with his own branding, actually had put together a moodboard already. Usually I would collect my own images to and then talk about that. However in this case the moodboard that Steven had put together was good enough for us to start talking on the spot about it.

We even got so far as to start talking about colors, feel and even down to things like what type of lettering was used during that era. While these things might sound trivial they’re there to build the atmosphere that is a role playing game.

While in itself is odd to see 4 floating heads playing a role playing game at least we can give a bit of immersion. We give this immersion by doing the right research for the game. Sure there might be things that needs to be overlooked and changed for readability and communication reasons.


Sketch 1

Sketch 1

The logo went through a lot of change before the final version but there’s solid reasons behind that. In the first sketch you can see a banner sketch that’s the base concept for the logo. You can also see three different attempts at trying out lettering of the time. This lettering will change due to it being too thin to actually be on a banner and it’s not readable for modern times.

Sketch 2

Sketch 2

In the second one you can see that I’ve made that decision and started to look for fonts. We also decided to alter the way the banner looked and added a spear.

While the sketch might look different it’s really only a second alteration. As you can see the right side is exactly the same as the first sketch.


King Arthur Pendragon Twitch Branding Logo


To the left here you can see the final version. As you can see there’s been a lot of changes and a lot of layers since the sketch. What I wanted to achieve, as with most role playing overlays, is more of a realistic feel. I’ve used textures combined with hand drawn shadows over basic shapes. Creating every highlight and shadow by hand gives an organic feel to it and using real textures allows for a more realistic feel. Combine those two and you get this type of result. To even further push that I’ve used the highlights and shadows layer to create a Distortion layer. That layer allows the embroidery and flag to give it the 3D appearance.

Below here you can see, most, of the layers shown one by one. In a few layers I’ve chosen to disable 2-3 layers at once but this give you a understanding of the work that goes into these type of logos.

Layer by layer animation

Layer by layer animation

Preview 1

King Arthur Pendragon Twitch Branding Preview

Preview 1

Usually when I do previews I add in about 2-3 different mock-ups. In this case I didn’t since I know that when it comes to role playing overlays they tend to look pretty much the same at the end of it.

What you can see in the preview is dirt, stones and roots. That’s pretty much it. While we talked about having flowers in the scene it just didn’t work. The reason why it didn’t work was that they didn’t fit with the dark theme and would only cover up the names of the players.

For the roots, stones and dirt I’ve used the same type of techniques as with the flag. I wanted to keep the organic feel so it was only right to keep doing the very same things here. Down to even using a lot of similar brushes across all of the different assets. In this case I even wrote down all the brushes that I used. The reason for this will become apparent in the final version.

King Arthur Pendragon Twitch Branding final version

Now for the final version you’re going to see that I’ve reused a lot of the assets. I’ve also added a lot of assets in terms of extending certain things. That’s why I wrote down the brushes that I used so that I could create more of the exact same style.

Another thing that I had to think about was that Steven don’t own Photoshop. As luck would have it Photoshop CS2 is sort of free to use, or at least it was since you could get a key from them directly for free for a small period of time. There’s still places where you can find CS2 and use any key. The reason why any key works is since they no longer provide the servers that checks the keys. So they instead offered up the program for free.

Since CC isn’t 100% compatible with with CS2 I had saved out everything but the text layer as a PNG. After that I exported the PSD with only the text layer. That PSD file could then be opened in CS2 since a lot of the layer styles in CC is also in CS2.

That’s the King Arthur Pendragon Twitch Branding complete and there’s already been one show as the writing of this article. I hope that they’ll keep going for a long time to come.

Next week we’re doing something new. I’m going to release a two part tutorial or walkthrough over how you can create a Twitch overlay in webflow. The videos are already uploaded and the articles are ready to go so get ready for those next week.

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