Quoted from dzoomer:
I get what you are saying but it's not a similar comparison. Actually, TNA is showing two old artistic styles being brought out together as that female drawing is more 90's or 2000's-ish. So it's more like 70's bell bottoms with 90's grunge. Strange.
And in your more recent example, the game is merging 90's/2000's male/female art style into a modern game again. TNA is merging two old styles, 80's retro futurism and 90's/2000's female art drawing.
I think it's the same concept even if we're talking about bringing just one visual style into the present or intermixing two from different decades.
I disagree that the character is made to a '90s style though. The artist in the TNA piece has colored the lineart with a clipping mask to make the lines mostly disappear. I don't remember seeing that being done very commonly in the '90s or even early 2000s. I think what makes the TNA girl look more '90s-like is a reduced anime influence in the design of the face compared to more contemporary stylized drawings (for example, check out how the bridge of her nose is straight and not a subtle curve outward as you see in anime). The differences between TNA and Overwatch character styles is a combination of the artist's preferences vs. the Overwatch team's as well as the translation of the visual identity to 3D. Take a look at the TNA girl next to the concept art of Overwatch's Sombra to see the truth in this, and then look at Sombra's 3D version in the center for comparison.
Quoted from dzoomer:
And the realism male/female art style in that video link is great. It tends to be relatively timeless, unless the technology used is dated. Realism male/female artwork would have worked great in TNA and it fits in with the 80's retro-futurism theme very well; it was/is often done in conjunction with 80's retro-futurism artwork.
I think quasi-Overwatch style illustrations merged with the synthwave look would work great and fit in with the whole theme. I think it would also offer a certain appeal to some passers-by that might have not have tried a pinball machine if it were covered with realistically drawn (or photos of) people, like someone in their mid-20s or younger that may have never touched a pinball machine before, but they have played Overwatch. Again, I don't believe in order to use the '80s vibe means you have to go whole-hog on it.