Design Journal: The Corrupted (“Awake”)

All of this– all of it is still a work in progress. Working name, design-in-progress…

The Corrupted…it’s a concept I’ve been struggling with for the longest time. There are a few design notes I’ve been scribbling down, and seeing as though horror isn’t my forte, the best I can do is scribble these ideas until something sticks.

I wanted the Corrupted to have three forms: glamoured, “Awake”, and their “True Face” or something like that. Glamoured is pretty self-explanatory; Kitsu, for example, is wearing a glamour that makes him appear to be a blue-haired humanoid man with pale skin. 

The Glamour functions more like a suit of armor or a protective field; Ambrosia’s atmosphere is especially harsh on them if they’re not wearing a glamour, as the planet itself seems to have created some kind of “antibodies” to fight against them.

As for the “Awake” and “True Face” forms, I’m still trying to figure out which is which. What I want is for the top left and bottom right to be them when they’re awake; some large demon/mutant towering some 14 feet and up, their forms starting to melt away and reveal the monster beneath the mask. Soon, their face is completely erased, save for when they open the many eyes and gross mouth on that head of theirs. Their hair is globulous and their chest cavity is lined with teeth-like appendages and a tuft of white fur that runs along their collar and over their shoulders. I wanted the overall theme of this form to be free-flowing and devoured, so the bottom right features their elongated forms almost dangling from the rest of their body. Perhaps this is their true face?

Which leaves the “awake” form as that huge serpent/skeleton-like thing in the center there. I wanted to translate the previously mentioned “True face” form to a giant spinal column. However, considering my lack of expertise in this area of character/creature design, I can’t really create that eldritch horror that I subconsciously strive for. All I know is that the giant serpent would “birth” their true forms and melt into a mass of black liquid–the liquid that’s covering the creature in the bottom right. These things would be towering some 24 feet height-wise, though their entire body length would be well over 75feet in total. So…concepts I want to strive for: body horror, eldritch horror, pointy things, large teeth, mandibles, spines, skeletal, free-flowing, liquid, devoured, ghastly, mouths, eyes, birth, and minimalism.

Above is a conceptual illustration of a Phantom, a type of Parasite that looks conspicuously similar to the “true face” form that I have to come up with an actual name for. The “horns” on the side kind of inspire me to want to have the large beasts have differing “horns” (the things protruding from the top sides of their heads). Note that in illustration C, the Corrupted girl is melting into a puddle of liquid. That would also point to the towering mass of black slime; the Corrupted can melt their forms and contain their consciousnesses within these black masses. This also makes it easy for them to possess and infect people.

I think I’m going to run around when I have funds and employ someone to help me out with this. I…I see something, but I can’t really get it down on paper. Not to mention, the most horror I stumble across is slasher-style shit and I have an abusive imagination, so as much as I’d like to look at some source material, I don’t want to traumatize myself. I don’t know. There’s a friend of mine from college who is brilliant at illustrating horror-themed works, so my ultimate goal would be to throw money at him and collaborate on just what these slimy nightmare creatures would look like. The best I can do is cross my fingers and keep drawing until I can proudly declare that I’ve designed a delicious nightmare.