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Expected to relese during the holiday season, likely as a launch title for the PlayStation 4, Guerilla Games looks to raise the bar with Killzone: Shadow Fall, offering a gritty shooter on a brighter world with characters that have actual depth. Assistant Art Director Dan Calvert recently shared some insight on designing some of the game’s new cast members, specifically the ISA’s Sinclair and Helghast elite soldier, Echo.

David Harewood (Battlefield 3, Homefront, Blood Diamond) will be lending his voice and likeness to Sinclair while Jamie Gray Hayder, best known for her work on True Blood is playing the part of Echo.

Calvert kicked things off on a recent PS Blog interview by giving a bit of background on these two characters who will serve an integral role in Shadow Fall’s new story.

“Sinclair is the head of the Vektan Security Agency—his job is to make sure the balance of power favors Vekta without escalating the cold war into open conflict,” Calvert explained. “Like [playable character] Lucas, Echo is an elite operative tasked to cross the wall, and her mission puts them on a collision course. She is extremely dangerous; an equal but opposite reflection nof the player character.”

For those of you interested in what goes into making a game from the concept stages forward, Calvert’s interview is definitely worth a read. He said that the team always begins with a clear idea of who a character is before diving into the details.

“We don’t want to spend time on lengthy exposition, so we wanted to make sure that when you see a character you understand exactly who they are, their relation to you, their personality and history and so on,” he explained. “It’s important to keep coming back to the central idea of practicality and functionality. These design features must be believable and organic to the character. If they’re too overt or impractical then the whole design falls apart and the character becomes very two-dimensional.”

He goes on to discuss the team’s use of new photometric 3D scanning, now capturing and recording the actors’ voice, body and facial expressions as they act out a scene. That might explain why Shadow Fall looks a little something like this…

Look for Shadow Fall, the latest entry in the now long running Killzone series, to hit the PlayStation 4 this winter during the holiday season.

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