You might not recognize his name, but Christian Lorenz Scheurer has had a hand in creating the world of the Matrix, Final Fantasy IX and Mistwalker’s upcoming Lost Odyssey. Square-Haven had a chance to pick his brain and ask him why he chose to change the design of the airships in Final Fantasy IX.
Haven: The conceptual designs you contributed for Final Fantasy IX's theatership were a new take on the famed airships of the series. How was this novel approach to the dirigible attained?
CLS: For the theatership, I was at first only handed a very small sketch done by my quite brilliant art director, Minaba-san. My job was to design all the elements, turning a small lead-pencil sketch into a full-blown design.
One of the approaches that I took which differed from the approaches on previous airships was to use "combinatory play," making the top of the ship reminiscent of a Versailles-style chateau while the lower half remained an aged mahogany barge-like structure. This idea of combining two different design languages into one ship broke traditional form for the Final Fantasy airship designs, which were for the most part solely wooden structures.
Initially, this break with tradition created quite a stir, but follow-up Final Fantasy games seemed to have adopted this design and integrated it into more recent airships and galleon figures.
Wait a minute… the Highwind, Falcon and the Ragnarok were made out of wood? Details aside it’s neat to hear where he gets his inspiration from. You can almost see the Giger influence in the Lost Odyssey monsters and it may have come from Christian Lorenz Scheurer’s touch.