As they said on their Twitter: “The Making Of a Hero! Learn about the development and making-of the Royal Champion in this short behind the scenes video.”
How it started
“It’s been four years since we’ve had a brand new hero in clash of clans. She’s fierce, she’s fearless, she totally kicks! We knew that we wanted to make a new hero for the Townhall 13 update and this only one name that comes to mind is the royal champion.
It has already been a bit of a journey because the original concept was created over a year ago and back then, we thought that we it will be really interesting to have a character that would be shorter range than Archer Queen, but not a melee character like a pure close-range melee character, and we originally envisioned the character that attacks with a spear and has some kind of ability to hit over walls, hit buildings that are next to walls over the wall.
As we got closer to the release of the town hall 13 update, it felt more appropriate to rethink the design around a more winter palette since the update was coming in December.
To understand the royal champion we had to go back a year ago, back when I was on the team and we were sitting in a meeting room, all of us all the clash team and we’re talking about Town Hall 13 and the idea of this hero comes up, and immediately I think “Ooh, a new hero that’s awesome!”
So I immediately stopped paying attention to whatever we were talking about like every good artist and started scribbling in my notepad and one of the things we came up with was this idea of a Valkyrie queen, one of the design inspirations was actually not Captain America, it was actually Xena Warrior Princess and the Wakanda warriors.
So I drew her with a long spear and fur coat and like metal plates, and sitting on this little notepad and I’m showing it to the other artists like “Hey, what do you think?”. And they say: “We like it, yeah, that’s pretty cool, I think there’s something here”.
So after the meeting I go back to my computer and we start sketching it out more and I’m thinking of how we can integrate these design elements. So I’ve got these triangles and we’ve got the spear and all these piercing elements, so I I drew a lot of triangular elements on the character, so that she felt consistent in her design.
She started becoming less of a Valkyrie Queen and sort of her own thing. And that’s why the idea of this Amazon came into my head and, you know, we’re thinking of maybe the town hall could be this jungle theme and then she would fit into this jungle area, when we design new content we actually do a lot of internal play-testing on the clash team to get a general feel of whether we like a new concept or not.
During the development of town all 13 there have been quite a few new troop ideas, that seemed really good on paper, but once we put them into an early development build of the game, those ideas or the utility or mechanics of those new troop ideas simply didn’t work the way we fought.
So in the end, they were scrapped however would the royal champion we went through a few design iterations before, as a team, we were completely happy with her. We actually had some of early concept sketches to work with, so we knew very early on what her special attacks would be, what her special ability would be and so in the end it just came down to making sure – it was balanced in the game.
But after a while, I actually left the team and afterwards I come back and I see, that it’s evolved from where it was, into this winter landscape or winter themed Town Hall. So her design had to change a bit, because before, she was all in brown and she fit more into the jungle theme, so we shifted her colors over to this blue element, gave her some longer pants and that’s how she ended up – being in the final result sort of a core philosophy for us – is that we try to make things as simple as we can, while still having sufficient depth, so that you can actually have different strategies and you can use the same troop or hero in different ways in the game.
With theRoyal Champion one of the differentiating factors was to short attack range so that she’s slightly different, than the Queen, but then the hero ability – the seeking shield – I think, that was one of the things that we really liked early on. It was a very simple concept: you press a button and then the hero throws her shield and takes out a bunch of buildings.
Every single person, whether you’re a designer, programmer or a community manager has to say a name, so it’s a fairly democratic process, but finding a name that everybody on the team agrees with, has led to some long debates.
Thoughts on character name
Some good ideas and some really really bad ones which is why I’m not allowed to name things very often, but we like the idea that she is the commander of the royal armies in Clash. We didn’t want to give her a title like “Queen” or “Princess”, because there’s already one Queen – the Archer Queen and we didn’t want people to think the world champion is the Archer Queen’s daughter.
If we called her princess, plus there’s already a princess in Clash Royale, and the Royal Champion is something completely brand-new. The bit in the name, where that royal is sort of a tie-in to King and Queen, so we have this Royal heroes.
She’s not a royal herself but she’s one of that part of that group, you could almost say bodyguard for the royal heroes. The royal champion was a culmination of a lot of people’s work. The idea evolved and gotten better through each artists it’s been through and with the help of everyone on the Clash team, a lot of design influences a lot of look influences, I think we ended up with a really cool character and so we’re super happy that.