As a result of our strong and enduring relationship with Blizzard, we were entrusted to work on their most iconic intellectual property, World of Warcraft, a testament to the high level of confidence and respect they have for us as a creative partner. Dragonflight: Legacies is a three-part 2.5D animated cinematic mini-series for World of Warcraft’s Dragonflight expansion. In this series, we join Nozdormu on his travels through the history of Azeroth's Dragonkind.
Before we started working on this project, Mooncolony had already collaborated with the Blizzard Entertainment team on 7 Hearthstone cinematics. However, this would be our first cinematic for the World of Warcraft franchise. The team was particularly excited about this project, with many of them being huge fans of the game and inspired by the universe.
“The fact that we were working on the world's most popular MMORPG was a huge honour, but it also came with a lot of pressure to deliver. We had to ensure that our work lived up to the high standards set by Blizzard's previously made cinematics, and we knew that we were creating content for millions of fans. It was a tremendous challenge, but ultimately a rewarding experience."
When it comes to projects like this, we typically start the illustration process as soon as the storyboard is complete and the mood boards are ready for reference. From there, our team hits the ground running, meticulously rendering each shot by hand to achieve that rich, textured, painterly look. Although some of these shots may appear flat at first glance, many of them are incredibly complex, with individual assets separated into distinct layers for animation purposes.
Over a hundred illustrations in total were produced for these cinematics. So it should come as no surprise that one of the biggest challenges on a project of this scale was ensuring there was a consistent style throughout when multiple artists were contributing to the same work. But thanks to strong art direction and our team's collaborative efforts, we were able to deliver a cohesive and visually stunning product.
"This was one of the most challenging projects we have ever tackled. As a team, we learned so much from it and had an amazing time creating all the illustrations. Cinematics team over at Blizzard are a delight to work with”
Once all of the shots are complete and approved, the illustrations are then moved into the next stage of production. This is when the magic of sound and animation brings our illustrations to life.
"Working on this project was an amazing opportunity to flex my creative muscles.”
It is always a privilege for the Mooncolony team to contribute to iconic intellectual properties. We take great pride in our ability to strike this delicate balance of exploring fresh and exciting creative directions while remaining true to the essence of these beloved universes. The level of creative input that clients require can vary greatly. Some briefs are highly specific and require a focused approach, while others are left open, providing us with the creative freedom to let our imaginations run wild and bring fresh, innovative concepts to the table. Below we have also included the concepts for Dragonflight: Legacies Chapter One.
So, please enjoy yet another epic collaboration between Mooncolony’s team of expert artists and the cinematic team from Blizzard Entertainment.
Alex Alexandrov (Lead Artist), Jaime Martinez, Leonardo Borazio, Raphael Masalimov, Yuriy Chemezov and Lambros Panousis