Established in 1955 in Victoria, BC, Canada, Royal Roads University (RRU) is a small, public university with about 2,500 students who study through a blend of on-site and online education to gain doctorate, graduate and undergraduate degrees. Perhaps RRU’s biggest claim to fame is its photogenic Hatley Castle, which doubled as Professor Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters in two X-Men films. Back in June, RRU introduced a new identity designed by Canadian marketing agency Cossette.
The newly unveiled logo takes the famous Hatley Castle Turret (the Castle has been featured in Hollywood blockbusters such as X-Men), and rebuilds the image using colourful pixels, to create a juxtaposition between traditional and online learning — testament to the unique model offered by the University. The pixels then shift into a bold foundation, telling a story of ‘transformation’ just like that which you experience as a student.
— Press Release
The old logo was a pretty boring interpretation of Hatley Castle’s turret with equally boring typography. The new icon does a great job in reinterpreting the turret in a way that is relevant to the university’s online focus and while pixels may be a cliché they work here very well to form the geometric turret and add some dynamism to it with the particle-y pixels coming into it. The typography is annoying and amateurish as hell — I really wish designers stopped taking this Museo font so seriously. In application, there is a fun and attention-grabbing pixel pattern that gets played up quite a bit; feels like it might get tired after a while, but as a way to promote the new look it does a good job. Overall, it’s a decent identity and launch but I really like the icon and find it to be an amusing and clever way of communicating two of the key aspects of the university.