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Every week, the Virtual Photography Archive Hour invites you to revisit your virtual photography archives as a great way to reach new audiences, rediscover past inspirations and even learn from mistakes. Featured below are a selection of the entries shared over the past month.


Title: GreedFall | Theme: AUTUMN

Developer: Spiders | Publisher: Focus Home Interactive | Initial Release: 10th September 2019

As intriguing as the distant path leading through this Autumnal scene may be, most of the frame simply serves as a background here thanks to the subtle defocus from the shallow depth of field. The real object of interest is of course that single falling oak leaf in the foreground, picked out by a focus that is as crisp as the dried leaf itself.


Title: Marvel's Spider-Man | Theme: FRIENDS

Developer: Insomniac Games | Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment | Initial Release: 7th Sept 2018

Something I tell my children (and only partly joking) is "never trust a cat", so seeing this shot of Black Cat submitted to the Friends theme definitely makes me see some duality. Is her right hand being lifted as a friendly wave, or as the readying of claws for betrayal...?


Title: Death Stranding | Theme: GLITCH

Developer: Kojima Productions | Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment, 505 Games | Initial Release: 8th November 2019

On first inspection, you might think this is a shot from a space game like Elite Dangerous or Star Citizen and although Death Stranding is only moderately more down to earth, it is actually the clever result of venturing out of bounds within the game. Perhaps another reminder of how greater freedom inevitably feeds creative output.


Title: God of War | Theme: FRIENDS

Developer: Santa Monica Studio | Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment | Initial Release: 20th Apr 2018

I picked this shot out because it demonstrates a couple of things that are good and bad about interrogating video games through VP. Firstly, it is a great chance to get a clear look at the details of Atreus' gear in the beautiful ambient lighting; but it also lays bare the unfortunate misalignment and clipping of his hand with the bow and arrow. Details that go unnoticed in gameplay but are ever more important in photo mode.


Title: Resident Evil Village | Theme: FOES

Developer: Capcom | Publisher: Capcom | Initial Release: 7th May 2021

It is no secret that I am not a fan of the Resident Evil Village "photo mode", but it has to be said that this is an effective shot. With a classic femme fatale feel, Lady Dimitrescu's face is shrouded by her hat leaving only the bright red lipstick visible past that iconic clawed glove!


Title: Ghost of Tsushima | Theme: FRIENDS

Developer: Sucker Punch | Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment | Initial Release: 17th July 2020

The fact that this immediately looks like a fantastical image of airborne horses galloping through clouds in the sky is a great testament to what can be achieved in a photo mode with a little planning and imagination. The glow worm particle effect contributes to the feeling of flying and the "sky" is actually shallow water, but quite how Dande_Lion55 got all 5 horses to rear up in the same place at the same time, I don't know.


Title: Assassin's Creed Valhalla | Theme: GLITCH

Developer: Ubisoft Montreal | Publisher: Ubisoft | Initial Release: 10th November 2020

Whether entirely created using photo mode and in-game glitches or with some creative post editing doesn't really matter here, it is always good to see what someone considers amongst their favourite creative work. The high contrast portrait is hardly recognisable as AC Valhalla, and the cool disintegration effect adds a sci-fi feel that reminds of stepping through a Stargate!


Title: The Last of Us Part II | Theme: FOES

Developer: Naughty Dog | Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment | Initial Release: 19th June 2020

There have certainly been plenty of portrait oriented Clicker shots over the last few years, but it is examples like this that I enjoy most. Not simply about the grotesque appearance of their mutated body, adeptly illuminated by torchlight, but the decaying body armour reminds us that this was once a person trying to play their part against the outbreak before meeting such a terrible fate.


Title: Abzû | Theme: FRIENDS

Developer: Giant Squid Studios | Publisher: 505 Games | Initial Release: 2nd August 2016

One of those games that shows why photorealism is not the only route to an appealing art style, Abzû can be the source of some serene underwater beauty. This capture of a huge blue whale dwarfing a diver does just that but, with no standard photo mode in the game, it remains a shame that these realms are not more accessible to virtual photographers on all platforms.


Revisit your archives and share some lost shots on Twitter every Sunday. Look out for the #VPArchiveHour theme post and simply reply with something from your existing archives for a chance to feature in next month's post.


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