Lights, Camera, GPose: A Guide to Designing Your Own Screenart, Part 3

Part 3 is here! The final entry into this guide, Part 3 will go over the final menu options in GPose. For reference, here are the links for Part 1 and Part 2.

We’ve gone over the Toggle menus at the top of the GPose menu and the General Effects menu. We’ve explored Limb Darkening, Depth of Field, and unique frames you can add to your screenshots. While the options there give you a lot to play with already, the image isn’t complete without the rest of the toolkit!

The final two menus to explore are the Effects menu and the Lighting menus. Both of these menus offer quite a dynamic range of options that can create completely new images and change the tone of your screenshot. Adding in the Pyretic effect, for example, can give your character a pumped-up, ready-to-burn intensity. Combine that with a warm tone color array in your lighting and you may get something that looks like this:

ffxiv_01092018_110840

Feel my wrath!

So without further ado, let’s dive into the Effects menu!

Effects

Before diving into the Effects menu, I need to add an important disclaimer about using it:

You cannot add an effect to a character that has its movement disabled. You need to apply the Effect first and then stop a character’s movement in the menu should you desire to use a specific pose. 

I find it good practice to watch the emote my character is using for a pose I’d like to freeze first, then apply the effect I want to see how it looks. How’s your timing? 😉

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Applying Effects to your character, or another character in your shot, is fairly straight-forward. First, click on the character you want to apply an Effect to and navigate the drop-down menu in the Effects options.

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Then use the button above, which looks like a Play/Pause button, to apply it. Hitting this button again will remove the effect. Here are the other two options:

Simple, right? I thought so too. Here are some of the other effects and what they look like:

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Frames

In Part 2, we went over screen effects that covered your entire image in a unique texture or color array. In the Effects menu, Frames are another option that will affect your whole image, albeit on the edges. Using Frames is a good way to cut off unwanted portions of the background and create a new focus on your character or the action within. Ultimately, what frames you use will boil down to your preference. Here are a few examples of their use:

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Motion/Subject

The controls here are bubbled in by default and I, personally, wouldn’t mess with them. These allow you to capture the actions that were the last to be performed before you enter into GPose. If you disable these box options, your GPose won’t use the action you queued up before entering into the screenshot feature.

But it should be noted that, in case you don’t like an action you’re performing in GPose, you can easily escape out of the menu and select a different emote or battle action to use to stop it from appearing in GPose. As of this current GPose iteration, there is no means to change your action or pose within the GPose menu itself.

Lighting

Nighttime in Eorzea offers unique screenshot chances, but with some challenges. Maybe your character trains at night in the snowy fields of Coerthas, or oversees the Garlean movements on the southern coast of Yanxia. Whatever your reasons, sometimes lighting will make the difference between a flat image with no discernible details and a natural, back-lit screenshot with the details of your glamour set prominently displayed.

lighting1

When you open up the lighting menu, you’re presented with these options for tinkering with your lighting. The buttons near the top in the red, yellow, and blue boxes toggle the lighting effects you’ve outlined in their respective boxes. Just match up the numbers in game!

The Lighting types are probably more important here, as they determine how strong the light is and the amount of area it covers.

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It’s important to note that when you’re using your lighting effects, your camera will be the point of origin for your light beam. So you can move your camera up close to your character, Enable the lighting, and then move your camera around again to see the stationary lighting.

A word of caution: At night, while using lighting effects, you can sometimes see balls of light that act as your light source when you enable them in the menu if you zoom out too far. So I would “drop” your light source further out than where you want to take your screenshot. 

ffxiv_01092018_120748.jpg

During the daytime, you just see a light, not the source. I dropped Type 2 lighting here and then zoomed out. Definitely useful for drawing attention to the subject(s) of your screenshot.

Lighting Type 1 is a very minimal light source. I find it has the best uses for illuminating faces and armor details when used up close.

Lighting Type 2 is a solid, well-rounded light that goes well with full-body shots. It won’t help illuminate a background, though, unless you place it specifically over a background element.

Lighting Type 3 is pretty much a spotlight. It’s good for when you need to zoom out far and want a strong enough light source to illuminate an entire scene involving two or more characters.

Of course, how you use lighting is entirely up to you. Purposefully “washing out” a scene with bright light can aid in creating a, say, large area blast of some kind that your character is caught up in for your screenshot, or create a sort of artificial bright sun effect in your image.

But what about all those color sliders? Using the RGB scale, you can adjust the color of your lighting to cast a different tone on your scene. I recommend adjusting one slider at a time to see how it looks with your native background lighting and the environment where you’re taking your screenshot.

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Let’s bring it all together now.

Now that you’ve got your education on the GPose menu, it’s time to get out there and create some awesome screenshots! The menu’s capabilities will only improve with time and will build upon what you already learn. Patch 4.2 will see a special Dungeon Recorder mechanic that will allow you to use the GPose menu inside of a dungeon-run playback. So… want to show your character valiantly squaring off against Ifrit? Or time your specific pose with Shiva’s Diamond Dust? With Patch 4.2, you will have that chance!

But on top of all of that is our very own SURGE Instagram. Managed by Hanza Shimada, the IG features screenshots from our members that display our unique artistic qualities. Contact Hanza to submit your own screenshot and check to see if it was featured on the IG!

Thanks for sticking it out with me for the GPose guide. This tool was quite extensive to cover, but it’s unlike anything else in other MMO games at present. I hope you have fun with it and I hope this guide has a hand in helping you create your own “screenart”!

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