banner of willem from bloodbourne reimagined
Bloodborne & Egyptian Horror
Doomed to roam a rotting world, the ancient sage known as Willem offers boundless insight . . . for a price.
humanoid person with a sundial for a face (above) My design was inspired by the original Willem from the Bloodborne franchise, Lovecraftian fiction, Egyptian sacred ibises, and a mixture of the 'mad scientist' and 'sage' tropes.

Bloodbourne's Willem (Reimagined)

The world is dying. The Egyptian Nile, once humanity's source of life, is now overflowing with cursed water. Innocent people who once lived in harmony now tear each other apart as the poison transforms them into hideous beasts. You, the player, escape the rising water with each new, escalating level.

You first meet Willem as he roams near a minor river that you can explore during your travels. By setting local traps for cursed beasts around the oasis he is able to cleanse the area of any threats. He moves around the map restlessly, but wherever he goes is a safe haven. In addition to fending off monsters, the snares that he leaves also provide him with a supply of corpses, which in turn provide tallow to light his torch. He studies the leftover body parts.

He is so old that over the years he has replaced crucial body parts with mechanical ones, fashioned and fused with ancient magic. As a result, he is a frail, slow-moving character, although his mind is far stronger and wiser than any other character you come across in the game. His face has been replaced by a wheel-like puzzle but he still communicates by lining up the hieroglyphics on the panels to form sentences.

different designs for the sundial on the characters face

(above) Design Layout, Page 1 Willem takes the role of cartographer & navigator for the player, who initially needs his help to access the next level. He can magically see through the torch in his head, and is even able to scry into other levels to provide advice to the player. Willem can see clearest when the torch is lit. From a gameplay standpoint, his torch-eye is also very functional. The player can see that Willem is ready to talk when the eye is burning. When it's dark, it means that Willem has run out of tallow, so he refuses to talk to the player unless offered something of value to him, such as more candle wax, magic runes, or beast parts (the player's survival is not Willem's highest priority, after all). This effectively limits the occasions that the player can ask for his advice.

sideview of the character

(above) Design Layout, Page 2 * Aqueduct canals also make him more recognizable from the side, since his head itself is less distinguishable from a 90 degree angle.