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Published on May 22nd, 2017 | by gareth


The Evolution Of The Video Game Costume Through The Years

This is some interesting stuff.



Assassin Outfits and Lara Croftumes – Video Game Apparel Changes
A vivid new graphic details the evolution of the character costumes from some of the most iconic games of the last 30 years – including Mario, Tomb Raider, and Mortal Kombat.

While some games let you pick your own look, many have character designs recognisable anywhere – Mario’s hat and overalls, Link’s green suit, Sub Zero’s blue selection. Long-standing fans of the games will be comfortable as soon as they step into those familiar raiments.

And yet, despite the visible similarities, there are often subtle changes between games. Mario has had very few alterations since his start, but those who remember his very first appearance might remember that there wasn’t a hint of blue anywhere around his look.

New research from Netent Stalker has looked into this colourful development of these video game character costumes, right through from their first game to the modern age, and covering some of the most familiar icons, like Lara Croft, Mario, and Princess Zelda.

Different Game, Different Style

While many of the changes are a slow shift from one look to another, others aren’t so subtle, and often accompany a change in the franchise. Link, for example, has kept his green outfit with his straight, windsock-like hat since his first appearance in The Legend of Zelda in 1986, but in the recent release Breath of the Wild he has, for the first time, ditched it for a blue outfit – and lost the hat.

Likewise, Dante took a complete design overhaul when it came to rebooting Devil May Cry as Devil may Cry (The “M” makes all the difference), despite retaining the same name and similar abilities. In his case, the white and the black have been inverted – giving an “opposite” sort of look to the demonslayer.

The Changes You Missed

Although most players will have noticed major alterations – and even some of the minor ones – there are outfits and designs you might have forgotten about between games. For example, did you notice:

  • Princess Zelda’s hair colour, which started brown, and has flipped between ginger and blonde every since?
  • Or the Prince of Persia’s, which, although briefly covered by a turban, has got darker with every successive game?
  • Sub Zero’s scar, which was forgotten at certain points (the character changes aside), and which became blue and began to fade away?
  • That Altaïr’s costume in the first Assassin’s Creed looks nothing like Jacob Frye’s in Assassin’s Creed Syndicate – but you can still track the design concepts from one game to the next?

Design Aesthetic

Some franchises retain a style while altering the characters. Assassin’s Creed has, with the exception of the Ezio trilogy, changed protagonist in every game, but there’s a clear design style running through each game – even if from one game to the next you swapped allegiance, or travelled thousands of years through time.

And Mega Man has costumes that look almost nothing alike – but it’s still recognisable as (roughly) the same character across different games, thanks to a blue colour scheme and similar helmet design.

But one thing remains true across all the characters from all the games – they’re all familiar faces, no matter which version you pick. Well, except for the first Prince of Persia, who’s just wearing pyjamas.

So whether you’re loony for Link, coo-coo for Kratos, or think you can remember every single one of Jill Valentine’s different outfits, make sure to check out the rest of the costume developments here.



You can see the full Infographic here.




About the Author

Syndicated movie & game critic, writer, author and frequent radio guest. His work has appeared in over 60 publications worldwide and he is the creator of the rising entertainment site and publication “Skewed and Reviewed”.He has three books of film, game reviews and interviews published and is a well-received and in demand speaker on the convention circuit. Gareth has appeared in movies and is a regular guest on a top-rated Seattle morning show.He has also appeared briefly in films such as “Prefountaine”, “Postal”. “Far Cry”. and others. Gareth is also an in-demand speaker at several conventions and has conducted popular panels for over two decades.

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