Created By: Iaculus on April 4, 2012 Last Edited By: Iaculus on May 2, 2012

CGI Is Otherworldly

CGI is used to emphasise something's alien, unnatural appearance.

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Trope
It's well known that often, CGI doesn't look quite right. It's too shiny, too regular. It doesn't even move properly. Some artists don't just recognise this - they exploit it.

This trope is for when CGI is deliberately used to make something look weird and alien, providing a glaring visual contrast with the rest of the show.

Compare Conspicuous CG (the Super Trope to this), Sinister Geometry (which is often created through CGI for this purpose) and the Uncanny Valley.
Community Feedback Replies: 12
  • April 4, 2012
    JobanGrayskull
    This effect was used in Titan AE on some of the planets, nebulas, and the Drej to give them an otherworldly feel alongside the hand-drawn animation of most of the characters.
  • April 4, 2012
    Iaculus
    Some examples from anime:

  • April 4, 2012
    TonyG
    • The title character from The Iron Giant was done on CG to emphatize the fact that he's a robot from outer space.
    • Drix from Osmosis Jones, an anthropomorphized cold pill, was also CG to contrast with the hand-drawn organic characters, to show that he was a synthetic substance.
  • April 8, 2012
    fulltimeD
    Whatever it was that the boys encountered underground in Chronicle that gave them telekinetic powers.
  • April 8, 2012
    NESBoy
  • April 8, 2012
    NESBoy
  • April 13, 2012
    JobanGrayskull
    Oh yeah, I just remembered one:

    • In the Pokemon trading card game's first set, the Ghastly, Haunter, and Porygon cards were made with CG art instead of the typical hand-drawn style. The former two are ghosts, and the latter is a virtual Pokemon.
  • April 19, 2012
    Iaculus
    Ah-ha! Got another one.

    • Erfworld has the Arkentools, mysterious, ancient, and astonishingly powerful artefacts that are rendered in 3D rather than hand-drawn like the rest of the strip.
  • April 19, 2012
    Tuckerscreator
    Er, about the Iron Giant example, I'm pretty sure he was CGI just because he would have been too hard to animate otherwise. Given how far the animators went avert Conspicuous CGI, I'm pretty sure it's not an example.

    Contact: When Arroway meets an alien in A Form You Are Comfortable With, that form of her father is CGI.
  • April 23, 2012
    fulltimeD
    ^ RE: Contact : He was? I thought he was played by the live actor (at least after The Reveal; before that, it's just a blurry half-formed image). I'll have to watch the movie again with a special eye to that scene.

    • This trope actually worked to the advantage of CGI artists in the early 90's who used CGI to almost exclusively animate otherworldy phenomenon before CGI was good enough to replace models of cities, ocean vessels, spaceships, live actors, etc... Examples that come to mind are Odo, Alex Mack and the T-1000 turning into metamorphic goo or liquid metal.
  • April 26, 2012
    Iaculus
    And another:

    • Skrugg technology in Heroman combines this with Sinister Geometry - their vehicles tend to be featureless, eerily large Platonic solids that are practically impossible to destroy.
  • May 2, 2012
    Tigirl
    In Avatar the Last Airbender, the war machine built to drill through the earth kingdom's capital was CGI. In fact, there may have been more instances then I recall.

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable

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