DC Universe Online
Take a Video Tour of the SOE Austin Studio

Studio Art Director Michael Daubert has posted a video tour of the SOE Austin studio on the DC Universe Online MySpace page. Daubert also posted a blog entry to coincide with the tour:

As you can see in the video, it's really cool to work in a studio that has wall-to-wall artwork from Jim Lee and his team at DC Comic's WildStorm Productions studio. As of right now, I believe we have more 1,200 concepts from Jim with more art coming in! We are going to have to move to a new studio soon just to get more wall space!

You can read the full blog entry below. Daubert further discusses the game's artwork and also gives some fun facts about the studio. For example, the design team wears Green Lantern shirts on Friday. Sure beats a suit and tie.

With a thundering SHAZAM, and a flash of lightning, appears Michael Daubert, Studio Art Director.

Wow, that entrance never gets old.

Hello everyone and thanks for taking the time during the holidays to check in with us here at the SOE Austin studio. As mentioned above, my name is Michael Daubert and I am the Studio Art Director. I was recently approached by our Associate Brand Manager, Chris "Binky" Launius to give a video tour of the SOE Austin studio, to give you insight into the studio's working environment and an introduction to the DCUO team. This video also lets you see that, yes, we do work hard at the studio, but that doesn't mean we can't have fun doing it.

We really wanted to show off the fun side of the studio, with a "Cribs" style shoot. Oh, and it was fun to run around with super hero capes through the halls. Our neighbors in the building still have no clue what we do…but we've definitely got them wondering!

As you can see in the video, it's really cool to work in a studio that has wall-to-wall artwork from Jim Lee and his team at DC Comic's WildStorm Productions studio. As of right now, I believe we have more 1,200 concepts from Jim with more art coming in! We are going to have to move to a new studio soon just to get more wall space!

Speaking of art, we've been working on a really cool new piece of art that we'll be debuting early next year on a magazine cover! I can't tell you which magazine it is but I can tell you that the art will blow you away! We've been working long and hard on this character art for the past couple of months, going through pose after pose, lighting passes, different color treatments and more to make sure that our art truly lives up to AAA standards. We'll also be taking the art with us to our panel at New York Comic-Con in February so you can catch it then as well.

A big part of my job here at the SOE Austin studio is to oversee all the art produced for our games.  I help to ensure that our team has the technology, support, tools and other assets they need to get the job done.  It is really awesome to have Jim Lee as our Executive Creative Director.  His insight and experience is invaluable.  Oftentimes, our best art comes from collaborating with Jim and his team of artists at DC Comics' WildStorm Productions.  Our team views the art with the eyes of 3D artists and Jim's team has the knowledge and expertise of the characters and their 2D personification.  I think what is cool is that by virtue of all of us working together we are creating some really amazing art that will distinguish this game.  We really hope you will like it.

Of course all of this detailed work requires reference material: therefore, every game developer has to have action figures in their office - it's a right of passage. And whatever you do, do not call them dolls: they are action figures! It's all for research…really! You also can't work on a DCUO game and not read DC Comics! Every month we get copies of the new DC Comics that have just been released so we can keep up to date with what's going on in the Universe. Where else do you get to have cool action figures and comics as part of your job and still call it work?

More fun facts about the studio: Every Friday is "Green Lantern Friday". It started with the design team wearing Green Lantern T-shirts, which spread through the studio. Then the team broke up to form the Sinestro Corp., donning yellow T-shirts with the Sinestro Corp. logo. Monday is "Batman Monday," and Wednesday is "Aquaman Wednesday," when we debate on exactly how cool Aquaman is. Who's your favorite super hero? Jump in on the forums or let us know in the comments section. Maybe we'll name a weekday after your favorite super hero! Oh, and did I mention "Kolache Fridays?" (If you don't know what these are Google it and then come to Texas to get one!) We get pastries and donuts every Friday. Mmmm…it is a known fact that developers do their best work after consuming lethal amounts of donuts.

Well, that's it for me. Sit back, grab a piece of fruitcake, and enjoy the video tour of the Austin studio. Make sure to keep checking in with us for the latest and greatest news from the DCUO team, and see what cool toys the development team gets for Christmas!

Remember - they are not DOLLS, they are ACTION FIGURES!!

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