In this blog article, I will address “How to Design a Video Game Character?”

The approach to designing the ultimate video game character is straightforward. Your beginning step might be as essential as knowing your video game art style.

Your Guide to Locating the Ideal Character Design for Your Video Game Project

How does one start creating a character for a video game? Like any creative process, character design doesn’t have a “one size fits all” method.

There are several approaches that artists and game developers might use. Some people could start with a broad notion and brainstorm ideas about their selected theme. Others may begin with something more particular, such as a dream or TV show they’d want to play through.

However, you need a more organized procedure for professionally doing 2D or 3D game graphics.

Here is a tried-and-true method to start your thoughts flowing and finally becoming a reality.

Begin with the visuals of your video game.

Video games are often the product of careful game design. The critical first stage in building your video game character is to decide on the design of your game, which includes everything from its overall theme to its graphic style to the user experience.

With it, your character would have a setting to live in.

Draw ideas from several sources.

Though the finest ideas can come from the most unexpected places, looking out into space isn’t always the wisest course of action. Therefore, you need to research to expedite developing your character design.

It’s time to search various sources for information now that you are clear on the sort of game you want to create and the aesthetic you want to achieve.

Obtain the necessary equipment.

Gaming characters will always be finished with the appropriate tools to create them.

If you need clarification about the game development tools and software you need, look at what you’re working on. And all you need to know when designing characters for video games is whether you want a 2D or 3D game as the final product.

The typical software needed to create a 2D game is mostly Adobe Photoshop. If you’re creating a 3D, you’ll want additional tools like ZBrush, Autodesk 3ds Max, and Substance Painter. But it’s crucial to condense your toolbox to the absolute necessities.

Model your concepts

You’ll have to go through several unsuccessful tries before you reach your “aha” moment. Once you’ve set up your workstation with all the necessary software and research materials, it’s time to give your ideas, no matter how terrible.

Create 2D or 3D character prototypes as sketches until you are comfortable with your design. Don’t worry; Stephen Hillenburg went through the same process before creating the final version of SpongeBob (who was supposedly once dubbed SpongeBoy).

Find out what your team thinks.

Like Stephen Hillenburg, you’ll also want your team’s or your friends’ creative contribution. Consider your work from a new angle to identify areas to improve.

How to Create a Character for a 3D Video Game

Let’s now be more specific. Although having a strategy to spark your creativity is beneficial, it would only be valid with implementation.

The fundamental 3D modeling methods for creating a video game character are as follows:

  • High-polygon modeling: 3D artists must first sculpt the model in minute detail to accurately construct the character’s characteristics.
  • However, the game engine will not support this high-poly model. Instead, this procedure’s final appearance will be applied later during the texturing step.
  • Retopology: To optimize the character, artists must lower the polygon count since a high-poly model requires a lot of data and is challenging to animate.
  • A 3D video game character gets simpler to use after this phase.
  • UV mapping, texture baking, and coloring are just a few of the processes that go into texturing, the last stage of making a 3D video game character.
  • Here, the high-poly model serves as the skin for the retopologized model, giving the character a refined appearance without degrading the performance of your video game.
  • The roughness, primary colors, and other characteristics of the character, as well as other significant elements, are also added by artists via texturing.

A Guide to 2D Video Game Character Design

Next, let’s create a 2D video game character. Expect more lines and fewer polygons in a 2D video game character design.

This is because the many 2D video games on the market often have cartoonish visual styles and make little effort to seem realistic. And isn’t this the appeal of 2D game art? Why do we still find ourselves captivated by them today?

Therefore, the following strategies are necessary to know if you’re making a 2D video game:

  • Two techniques may be used to make preliminary drawings of your 2D figure. First, use your tablet or other device to draw directly on the software program of your choice. And second, by visiting an archeological site and discovering the pencil and paper, two ancient drawing artifacts.
  • You may start designing your 2D video game character from hand drawings. You may now proceed after digitizing and importing your drawing into your digital art program.
  • Digital outlining: Create the parts of your 2D game character if you’re pleased with your basic drawing. You read correctly; we mean bits because you must outline your drawing on many levels to animate your 2D figure.
  • You have to have a layer for your 2D character’s head, an additional one for each of its arms, and even a layer for each of its hairs! This will make it simple for you to bring this character to life.
  • Coloring: The last stage in this process is to complete your character’s look with color, just as when creating 3D video game characters. Even if you see your game in black and white, you should give your character highlights and shadows.


How is a video game character created? Depending on your preferences, you may create your system or wing it each time you have to sit down and construct one.

However, we advise using this method if you want 3D or 2D characters for business purposes:

  • Start with the visual design of your video game.
  • Draw ideas from a variety of places.
  • Amass the necessary tools.
  • Model your concepts.
  • Find out what other people think.

And if you’re interested in learning the fundamental procedures for making a 2D or 3D video game character, they are as follows.

Consider the following methods while creating a 3D video game character:

  • Modeling with high-poly
  • Retopology
  • Texturing

The following methods are used while creating a 2D video game character:

  • Rough drawing
  • Electronic outlining
  • Coloring