If I can be honest, this game was the reason I refused to draw noses for years. I can never beat someone else at their own style of course (read: I didn't even come close), but it was fun trying to figure out the process of getting the look down. A lot of the tones he achieves come from hatching alone (I added some shading underneath the hatching on a few until I'd realized this). Again, that's something that seems to be done better when it's a natural result of the tool, rather than trying to copy it in Photoshop. It's also harder than it might look to draw a proper looking head when it's missing an obvious feature. Drawing oversized hands was kind of funny though. To this day I think he might be one of the bigger influences on the way I draw characters though I may not have realized it at the time.
I'm also realizing the kind of workloads that professional character artists have in full scale projects like this. The ones I did here took around 2 weeks working alongside other things (I could do about one per day, around 4-6 hours for each). Akihiko Yoshida had to illustrate at least 32 generic human characters (2 for every job class in Final Fantasy Tactics--each gender has its own design), on top of all of the important characters, as well as the creature design. I also read in another article about Fire Emblem: Awakening that lead character artist Kozaki Yusuke was tasked with designing around 60 characters for the game, in addition to his other freelance work. It's daunting, but it's also good to get an idea of what character artists like these guys actually have to go through when working on a single title. I guess as long as you're getting hired to draw characters for a high profile title, it doesn't feel even like work. Too much, anyway.