by Max Barry

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by The Rodentine Seer of Malphe II. . 276 reads.

The Rat Reforms Entry 01: Aesthetic Overhaul

or, an account of redesigning the graphics of osiris
<< the live journal of hazel-malphe, pharaoh of osiris >>

Alright, welcome to the Rat Reforms:tm:, the live journal of me about the stuff I'm doing to fix up Osiris! I have very specific elements of the region I want to touch on and I'll be going every one of them individually, for each I'll publish an entry to the rat reforms:tm: detailing the changes I have made and the theory I apply via them. There is no specific schedule or list I'm going through, this is what I do when I get to it. Hope yall enjoy!

For this entry we've got the aesthetics of the region- the WFE, the colour scheme, the dispatches, the graphics. The graphic design of Osiris has been disjointed for a while now, the product of several years of clashing aesthetics piled over eachother, this overhaul is designed to unify and improve them. This comes first just cus I could prep it all before I was officially Pharaoh, unlike everything else with more moving parts.


No graphics overhaul can be complete without first redesigning the flag, a process that's taken about two months from conception to what I have now. The scarab flag we'd been using for the last few years was a very complex and intricate graphic taken from the internet, it left elements to be desired tl;dr so what I was designing had to fulfil a set of criteria- it had to be historically founded, simple enough to downsize effectively for server icons and headers, complex enough to be visually interesting, and meaningful to the theme of Osiris.

The design I ultimately elected on is originated from the combination of Linkthe old OFO flag and LinkVleer's later design, and it fulfils all criteria- plus a few Linkredesigned versions to fit better as server icons and the like. This originated from a design where the eye of Horus rested on top of a Scarab as it's head, but I ended up simplifying it. I also considered putting the Crest of Vytherov in the background, it's the weird spiky thing in Vleer's flag, but I decided the more concise the flag was the better.

The overlapping double eye of Horus has a long history in Osiran graphics, lowkey I'd say even after three years of the Scarab it's the single most recognizable symbol of the OFO. This redesign is intended to be simple but interlocking, every part of the design is dependent on every other part of it to look right, it works uniquely well for banners and headers for how flat it is, plus blah blah it downsizes well and Horus is basically the protag of the Osiris myth so blah blah blah, it works and I like it.

After I'd finished the design I worked on a bunch of variations- the aforementioned server icon variation, smaller sizes (surprisingly hard to resize without looking pixel-y), smaller sizes with borders, etc.


Early on into designing the flag I had to figure out what colour scheme I wanted to go for. The flag of Osiris has had SO many colours- we got Linkgolds, Linkblues, Linkgolds n blues, Linkreds, Linkbronze-ish golds, you name it, and all of our secondary graphics have been some weird combination of all of those. I wanted to create a narrower purview, a single colour you could identify among the other regions of NS as Osiran.

You'll notice there's quite a lot of gold up there, so that's what I went with- works pretty well too, black for the dark soils of the Nile and gold for the desert. I wanted to invoke the desert with my redesign so this worked quite well, I'm avoiding blue like the plague for how common it is. I ultimately settled on #BB9421 and #91730E for the primary colours of Osiris, the darker gold makes up for some contrast that's missing with only using one primary colour for your region. The Sekhmet Legion stays blood red ofc.


Next up is dispatches. Our old dispatch system, spruced up and maintained by myself as it was, was still the same we'd be using for several years; I didn't like how many there were, how many didn't really need to exist, and how difficult it was to unify the existing texts into a graphical style I liked. This lead me to design a new set of dispatches, this time only three- the Golden, Reddened, and Paled Books of Ma'at, guides to Osiris, the Legion, and to a collection of Osiran resources respectively. Some thought went into these, but all you need to know is they look better, contain more information in a more efficient package, and are easier to work with as living documents. Nicer dispatch nation too, I'm lowkey shocked 'Hieroglyphs' wasn't taken. I intend to build off the back of them further in the coming months, there's a lot I still haven't included and a lot of pretty clunky segments I want to rewrite.

In rewriting the dispatches I've run into a lot of funky dead ends where I've found something I want to rework or reform but I couldn't do it yet, so there's still a lot of blank sections of the Books of Ma'at that I'll fill in once I've fixed up whatever I don't like and I can feel good about including it in the book. I'm also defining a few set templates within the books for forum announcements and the like, that way there's no more *wait how should i format this* crises.

Very notable is that if you're not sure of the policy in a particular area, like embassies or endorsement caps or whatever, the Books of Ma'at have precedent over any old forum resources I haven't updated yet. These policies are upheld by word of the Pharaoh, and my word is in these new dispatches.


For WFE and dispatch aesthetics, at some point along the line I decided to go for the ~simple hacker-vibes brutalist utilitarian command line~ aesthetics cus honestly they're what I vibe with most and I'm Pharaoh now. WFE and banners both redesigned to fit the new aesthetic + flag + colour scheme obvs, new regional tablet for fyi's and the like, fully expect to tweak it a lot into the future. There's a lot of boring stuff I've also done over, you'd be surprised at the sheer amount of writing involved with a Sinker delegacy.

Think that's basically it, tune in next time to the Rat Reforms:tm: for something else.

while True: print("next up is prolly forum cleanup actually")