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USFL Logo/Helmet Refresh (AZ Wranglers & OAK Invaders Revisions)


Wildcomet
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Hello everyone, I decided after the announcement of the USFL possibly coming back next year to put some thoughts into refreshing some of the old USFL team identities. Since the new league is aiming for 8 teams to start, I decided to choose 8 for the first run of the series, but if the demand is there I may expand to more teams. I don't have a good uniform template, so I'll be doing just logos and helmets for this series.

 

These are the teams I'll be doing starting out:

 

Page 1:

Chicago Blitz - posted

Denver Gold - posted

Detroit Panthers (formerly Michigan) - posted

Los Angeles Express - posted

New Jersey Generals - posted & revised

Page 2:

Oakland Invaders - posted & revised

Tampa Bay Bandits - posted

Washington Federals - posted

Revised Detroit Panthers - posted

Page 3:

Revised New Jersey Generals - posted

Revised Tampa Bay Bandits - posted

Arizona Wranglers - posted

Birmingham Stallions - posted

Page 4:

Jacksonville Bulls - posted

Philadelphia Stars - posted

Revised Birmingham Stallions - posted

Pittsburgh Maulers - posted

San Antonio Gunslingers - posted

Page 5:

Revised Arizona Wranglers - posted

Revised Oakland Invaders - posted

 

Coming soon:

Project-Wide Helmet Poster

 

 

Here's my take on a new logo for the league itself to get started. I'll be sharing the teams in alphabetical order so Chicago will start things off with my next post.

 

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Here we go with the first one, the Chicago blitz! The big change to the logo, aside from a new font is that I added the light blue from the Chicago flag to compliment the red and dark blue, and incorporated the 6-pointed star from their flag into the Z/lightning bolt. I also redesigned that aspect a bit to emphasize the lightning bolt shape a bit more. I thought it worked well by itself so I used it as the helmet logo. The helmet is pretty straight forward but I think it gives them a nice clean look. 

 

Chicago-Blitz-Refresh-Presentation.jpg

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I think the update is pretty good. The logo is still familiar which, I think, is important in a series like this. The biggest issue I have is the top of the lightning bolt and how it comes off of the “z.” The slight incline away just looks awkward. I think it would look better either being flush with the top of the letter or starting above the top of the letter as in the old logo.

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Thanks for the feedback and likes thus far! I'll give some thought to the Chicago logo around the Z. I didn't particularly like how it just stepped up in the original logo, but I may play around with just having it all flush at the end.

 

I got the next one in line today, the Denver Gold! I decided to try something different here as I thought it worked with the Gold name of being a bit more shiny/iridescent and incorporated a gradient into the helmet, as well as give the brand a 3rd color. I realized by the end I had ended up with a somewhat Jaguars-ish in color palette, but I think it works. Obviously I changed the circle from the original logo into a D, which seems like a simple change to give the logo a little more personality as the original just feels really plain and generic to me. I think this gradient works much better than what the Jaguars did in the past; I think the big issue with the Jags was that the gradient was too flat and changed too quickly between colors that were too different.  This darker teal and black blend together better, and making it fade from one to the other over a larger area and more diagonally makes it feel more natural I think. I struggled to give it a speckled & extra shiny finish that worked well on the template but in my head at least it would have that as well.

 

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I'll keep going with the next one on the list, the Detroit (formerly Michigan) Panthers!

 

I felt the logo could be use a little more aggressiveness from the original, so I rounded off that flat bottom which felt off to me, added some black which seemed fitting given that it was based off a black panther, as well as a couple detail lines to help give it more a sense of movement.  On the helmet I wanted to convey a similar aggressiveness, so I put a couple of the black/blue accents from the logo onto the helmet as well.

 

Detroit-Panthers-Refresh-Presentation.jp

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All the logo updates are solid, however in my opinion the color updates are not. The lighter blue doesn't work for the Blitz, the teal doesn't go with the Gold and where is the iconic champagne color for the Panthers. Overall some good ideas to work with, but the color changes just don't do it for me.

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38 minutes ago, Skycast said:

All the logo updates are solid, however in my opinion the color updates are not. The lighter blue doesn't work for the Blitz, the teal doesn't go with the Gold and where is the iconic champagne color for the Panthers. Overall some good ideas to work with, but the color changes just don't do it for me.

 

Appreciate the feedback. My ignorance showed a bit on the last one; the logo I found for the Panthers (the old one shown in my post) didn't have any champagne color in it which is why I didn't use it. I did a deeper look and found some pics of the helmet incorporating it so I may go back to this one and put it in place of the white in mine; I do like how the color fits with the others.

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2 hours ago, Wildcomet said:

 

Appreciate the feedback. My ignorance showed a bit on the last one; the logo I found for the Panthers (the old one shown in my post) didn't have any champagne color in it which is why I didn't use it. I did a deeper look and found some pics of the helmet incorporating it so I may go back to this one and put it in place of the white in mine; I do like how the color fits with the others.

 

Yea, not saying those colors are bad choices per se, others obviously will have a different opinion, but for me they just don't work. For what it's worth, I grew up during that era and went to many Tampa Bay Bandits games during my high school days. I have very, very fond memories of the USFL.

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27 minutes ago, Skycast said:

 

Yea, not saying those colors are bad choices per se, others obviously will have a different opinion, but for me they just don't work. For what it's worth, I grew up during that era and went to many Tampa Bay Bandits games during my high school days. I have very, very fond memories of the USFL.

 

From what I've heard I expect I would have really enjoyed it, but I was born a year or so after the league went under so I missed the chance to watch any of their games as they happened. Duly noted on the color combos, they can definitely be subjective to a degree. Honestly I just really like aquas & yellows/golds together for some reason and Denver needed a 3rd color for the logo I had made to work, so that's how that got there haha. For what it's worth the remaining five teams won't get any major color changes. It was just coincidence that the ones I felt could use it happened to be at the beginning of the alphabet.

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Time for #4 in this series, so we head to the West Coast to meet the updated Los Angeles Express! As you can see, the logo has two significant changes made. I added some additional designs inside the letters to make the graphic appear more interesting and help convey a sense of movement to it, and I tapered off the streaks at the ends so they come to points rather than just end as horizontal lines.  Having the inner letter track of the letters blend into the the streaks worked well I think. I kept the helmet simple; with a still fairly simple logo it wouldn't fit if the helmet had a lot going on. No major color changes, just added a little light gray to compliment the white.  Hope you all enjoy!

 

Los-Angeles-Express-Refresh-Presentation

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  • Wildcomet changed the title to USFL Logo/Helmet Refresh (Updated: Los Angeles Express)

Hopefully people liked the Express, I'm going to keep going and share the next one. This one takes us across the country to the East Coast to meet the new New Jersey Generals.

 

I've seen a few concepts for this team in the past based on the idea of using the 5 stars to make a pentagon in the middle, so rather than try to top those concepts I decided to invert them, and make a big star inside of 5 pentagons. The pentagons were feeling a bit too empty, so I divided them up, and it ended up looking like thinner stars inside the pentagons also. I added some chevrons on the front and back of the helmet in the way they would be on the shoulders of a uniform. 

 

New-Jersey-Generals-Refresh-Presentation

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  • Wildcomet changed the title to USFL Logo/Helmet Refresh (Updated: New Jersey Generals)
14 hours ago, The Gambler said:

I have a strange urge to buy a Chrysler

Yeah, pretty sure the Chrysler company would have an issue with that design.  I like what you did with LA.  SImilar to something I am cooking up for the return of the LA Express in my simulation/alt history league. 

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...can I add a backstory about how Chrysler bought the team and integrated the branding for cross promotion? Lol. That one totally went past me. I'll put this on a list of touch ups to make, I'm sure I can make the pentagons less Chryslerish but still interesting.  I figured I'd go through the 8 planned teams, then do any revisions that may come up through the process. Appreciate the comments and feedback!

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25 minutes ago, Wildcomet said:

...can I add a backstory about how Chrysler bought the team and integrated the branding for cross promotion? Lol. That one totally went past me. I'll put this on a list of touch ups to make, I'm sure I can make the pentagons less Chryslerish but still interesting.  I figured I'd go through the 8 planned teams, then do any revisions that may come up through the process. Appreciate the comments and feedback!

That first line was funny :)

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That inadvertent similarity bugged me so I decided to revise that right away rather than come back to it. I switched out the old pentagon interiors for chevrons pointing towards the star. The chevrons tie in with the military theme still, and honestly I'm liking the way it looks over the old one. Works better for different sizes and draws the eyes towards the center of the logo and had less repetition in it.

 

NJ-Generals-Refresh-Presentation.jpg

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  • Wildcomet changed the title to USFL Logo/Helmet Refresh (Revised: New Jersey Generals)

The Chrysler logos worked better, but I think the 5 stars making a pentagon would have been a better direction or a cleanup of the original logo. These new pentagon shapes are a little confusing. 

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  • Wildcomet changed the title to USFL Logo/Helmet Refresh (AZ Wranglers & OAK Invaders Revisions)

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