We all have our favourites, and this is mine. The Far Cry 3 standee was a joy to work on for Ubisoft and I take so much pride in the end result that Matrix MCI and I achieved.
This was a culmination of skills for me; I would not have been able to make my vision for this a reality if I did not have great sketching, industrial design and graphic design skills. I started with a sketch, two actually and this one was chosen. The concept was to make the game art of Vaas sitting on the beach come to lift by having the sand slope up to the trees and having the trees come straight up.
Ubisoft had a budget number they wanted us to hit, and the Matrix project management and print team determined we could only use 1 large press sheet, no more. Ubisoft provided the game art and I worked out rough sizing of the pieces in Adobe Illustrator which I provided to the structural designers. They came back with bad news: there was no way this design was going to fit on one sheet.
I wasn’t about to give up on my baby quite yet. I loved the design, and more importantly, the client loved it too. I took my rough shapes made in Illustrator and played with them like a jigsaw puzzle, desperately trying to get the pieces to fit. It just wasn’t fitting. Then it hit me: if we separated the triangular sides of the base and place them together, we could make a very tight square. We could place that square to the right side allowing the backer to be placed along the left. This freed up a whole quadrant for Vaas, the title treatment, and the head in the sand. Eureka! All the puzzle pieces fit.
The structural designers figured out how to tab it all together, but used my layout on the sheet. I was then able to take their die lines and create the final art. I paid special attention to intelligently designing the bleed so that Vaas would look okay if the die shifted in manufacturing.
We were all ready to go, then Ubisoft had one more request. They liked the piece so much that they worked out a deal with their #1 retailer to keep the standee in stores after the release date. They wonder if there was a way to have the release date text on a separate corrugate lug so that it could be removed after the game came out and the text was no longer relevant. Another puzzle piece! I was able to tighten up the pieces on the sheet and make room. After this change, 82% of the print sheet was being used!
I then created an instruction sheet with no words so that it could be used for both english and french speaking parts of the country.
This was a great result for both Matrix MCI and Ubisoft. We made thousands of these standees, and the game was a run away hit for Ubisoft. It goes to show that commitment to a concept, persistence and passion can lead to an amazing final product.