As a tie-in for Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, Square Enix and deviantART asked fans to create their own take on the Final Fantasy heroine. Tetsuya Nomura who created Lightning judged the contest and selected these three designs out of 4,655 total submissions.
Wilhelmina from KarmaLizzard was one of the winning entries.
“With one look I was hooked. The costume itself is sophisticated, and it’s also very well done as an illustration. The background that reminded me of the Japanese flag (Hinomaru) matched well with the piece and was beautiful. As an artist, when I look at different works of art, I think to myself ‘If it were up to me, I would do it differently,’ but that thought didn’t cross my mind once when I saw this picture,” Nomura commented.
Forbidden Gateway by ArisT0te was another winning entry.
“At first glance it looks like a CG, and it has a level of quality that makes it look like it was captured as a screenshot. While there were many heroic costumes for Lightning, I was drawn to the femininity of this costume and her hairstyle,” said Nomura.
Last, but certainly not least is Lightning – Mythril Scorpion Armor by randis.
“It’s wonderful as an illustration, but in addition to that, the artist drew in both the front and back views, so I felt the artist’s clear intent when they created this piece. The red and blue color scheme was very beautiful, too,” Nomura lauded.