Then it changed into this placeholder:
Now we have this.
I think I've mentioned this already, but the game's aesthetics are somewhat inspired by 50s science fiction films, so those influenced some of the ideas I cycled through for the ship's overall shape. Aside from that though, I tried to look at anything with a remotely interesting silhouette, from actual shuttles to metal detectors to pepper dispensers. These are some concepts I drew up before heading into Illustrator.
One of the main challenges was keeping in mind how it would actually animate and function when considering the ship's appearance. I had to make something that would allow the wings to fan out or move in some way when the Boost animation was triggered in-game. And I needed a form that would show up well on a dark background with symmetrical lighting on either side.
Eventually decided on the moving parts--I knew that the glass dome would need reflections of stars scrolling across its surface. The rotating lights were to give the ship some life as an actual functioning machine. I considered some exhaust, but it doesn't seem like you see exhaust from space faring vehicles very often in movies... I dunno.
This is also probably the first time I'd ever done complete animations using Illustrator.
Original version below, but it seemed a little too fast. Maybe we can use it for Boosting though...
This project's come quite a ways, but we're making serious progress--hopefully more to come soon! And of course MDNL's blog is a good way to keep track of everything that's going on if you haven't been.