Character Builder/Generator

Discussion in 'Useful Development Tools' started by NeilColl, Oct 2, 2019.

  1. NeilColl

    NeilColl Villager Member

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    Hi Everyone,

    I recently made a character generator tool because I needed a good way to make many characters for my upcoming indie game. I didn't like the default RPGMaker style sprites and found it a lot of work to use arbitrary resource packs provided online, or found they didn't have as much variety as I needed.

    I decided to go the extra mile and package the tool up (and spend $100, wow I must love you guys!) for easy download on Steam for Windows and Mac. I figured it could be really helpful to other game developers with limited resources to make sprites. So, if you're looking for a different style of sprite for your game please check it out and let me know what you think.

    Available for free on Steam Oct 3rd, 2019.



    Features:

    - Based on Universal LPC Spritesheet project, so you can use for free in your game (commercial or non-commercial) as long as you give credit to the artists
    - Humans (male/female/children), Orcs, Reptiles, zombies, skeletons, etc.
    - Clothes, shoes, jewelry, hats, bags, capes, gloves, belts, ties, masks, beards, weapons
    - Thousands of parts means almost unlimited variations
    - Export sprite sheets as PNG into RPG Maker MV (and other versions)
    - Randomizer for quick creation
    - Save sheets as templates to easily build upon and modify later

    Future Development:

    I will probably commission some more character parts for the tool during the development my game, and I will update it through Steam periodically. The more support I get, the more I will be able to continue to add to this tool. Also, if you just want to give back by contributing new artwork directly, please message me with your sprite sheets and I will be able to incorporate them into future updates.

    Update 10/4/19: People have asked how to use the sprite sheets created in MV or Ace. This is detailed in the app help file, but basically since the engines use 3 frame sheets by defaults you will install a plugin to support different frame quantities. This will also give your animations a slightly smoother look.

    For MV: I use Modern Algebra's ExtraMovementFrames.js. It is free and you can get it here.

    For Ace: https://victorenginescripts.wordpress.com/rpg-maker-vx-ace/multi-frames/. He also has an MV specific one too.



    Happy Building!
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2019
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  2. ImaginaryVillain

    ImaginaryVillain Spawned by Galv Forum Spawner Veteran

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    Looking forward to checking this out for future projects, thanks!
     
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  3. Oddball

    Oddball Veteran Veteran

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    Can this make sideview battlers too?
     
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  4. ImaginaryVillain

    ImaginaryVillain Spawned by Galv Forum Spawner Veteran

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    Last edited: Oct 2, 2019
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  5. Golden Unicorn Gaming

    Golden Unicorn Gaming Savior of Astoria Veteran

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    Amazing work!
     
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  6. NeilColl

    NeilColl Villager Member

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    It does. The main difference is that is exports files ready to go in RPGMaker - I took only the walk animations (which each have 8 frames). Universal LPC has more animation types, but differing frame quantities all in on big sheet which makes it a bit more hassle to get into RPGMaker MV - at least that's what I found.

    Also, I combined other assets from a few other LPC forks, and commissioned a little of my own, so overall it is pretty complete in terms of all the LPC assets.

    Alas, no, sorry.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 3, 2019
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  7. Kes

    Kes Global Moderators Global Mod

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    I think this is best over in Useful Development Tools. That way, more people than just those using MV are likely to see it.
    Nice generator. Well done.

    Move this.

     
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  8. Indinera

    Indinera Indie Dev Veteran

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    Been trying it for a while, is there a way to export the spritesheet as something that Ace and/or MV can use? For instance a 144x192 spritesheet, 3 animations for each direction?
     
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  9. NeilColl

    NeilColl Villager Member

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    Sorry...all assets are from LPC and so I don't have any artwork for that. :(
     
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  10. Indinera

    Indinera Indie Dev Veteran

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    But then correct me if I'm wrong but this bullet point is not available?

    Export sprite sheets as PNG into RPG Maker MV (and other versions)
     
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  11. NeilColl

    NeilColl Villager Member

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    No, I believe the sprite sheets created here are usable in those engines in certain scenarios. MV also supports 3 frame sheets by default, but using a plugin you can change this default. I recall reading the same was true for other versions.

    At the end of day it's just a PNG sprite sheet. All engines could be made to support using them, albeit with differing amounts of effort. For VX Ace this looks like this plugin would work for you nicely: https://victorenginescripts.wordpress.com/rpg-maker-vx-ace/multi-frames/

    I updated the main post with this info, and also the MV equivalent plugin for multiple frames.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2019
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  12. Indinera

    Indinera Indie Dev Veteran

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    Thanks for the link and infos.
    The sprites it creates are too big for Ace and even MV. Unless you want to use another size of course, but I mean the native, usual size.
    Resizing is likely to create a quality loss. And that's before you have to manually recreate all your own spritesheets, which seems a very tedious thing to go through.
    Unfortunately, as it is, I don't find this generator very practical for RM game making, which kinda defeats the purpose of a "generator" in the first place. :dizzy:
     
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  13. NeilColl

    NeilColl Villager Member

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    The sprites are meant to be "tall" sprites - not the usual little ones. The dimensions were chosen based on what I found worked best for my game. MV has no problem with it, because it doesn't car what size your sprites are. Maybe VX does care. In MV though it works perfectly for me, and there is no quality loss at all. There is no need at all for me to remake any spritesheets and it works great in the map. Below is a link to the sheets in action on my game:



    I guess overall MV may have been better designed to be more flexible in this area. I did put this thread in the MV forum originally, but it was moved. I am sorry that this tool is not suitable for your needs.
     
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  14. Indinera

    Indinera Indie Dev Veteran

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    I think they'll be too tall for Ace.
    Maybe they do work for MV though.
    That still leaves me with the dilemma to assemble the 608x316 image that the generator exports into something that MV can read... :dizzy:
     
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  15. NeilColl

    NeilColl Villager Member

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    MV can read the size. Using the plugin link above, you save the file to img/characters and it just works. The name of the file exported lets MV know that it is a single sheet file, with 8 frames. The plugin and MV handle the rest.

    For Ace (or MV as well if you want), I would suggest a resize using ImageMagick if you don't like the frame size. It should be pretty simple. If you do have a specific size you need I could take a look, and maybe add to the tool next update this option for Ace users. Tell me what you think Ace users would want, I can play around with it in the next day or two and see what I can export to make it easier...maybe a frame size option.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2019
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  16. Indinera

    Indinera Indie Dev Veteran

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    Okay, thanks for the information. I'll give it a try. :p:thumbsup-left:

    EDIT:
    forgot to reply about sizes. Sprites tend to be smaller in Ace. I think it's 24x32 for one frame. Anything close to this size (same or a bit bigger) would be good I reckon.
     
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  17. NeilColl

    NeilColl Villager Member

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    T
    This post here talks about Ace specfically, and from what I read it says it behaves the same as MV. Therefore, regardless of frame size the only thing that should be required to do (and only if you want the chars to be bigger or smaller for your particular game), would be to resize them in something like Gimp/Photoshop.

    "Characters (Graphics/Characters)
    Files containing images of characters to display on the map screen.

    A character can be of any size, and a total of twelve patterns (four directions (down, left, right, up) × 3 patterns) are arranged in the designated order. In each file, arrange characters two down and four across, for a total of eight. The size of this character is calculated based on one-twelfth the width and one-eighth the height of this file.

    Note that RPG Maker VX Ace displays characters offset four pixels from tiles so as to more naturally portray them with buildings.

    Adding an exclamation point (!) to the beginning of a file name cancels the application of the four-pixel offset, and also turns off the translucent effect applied by the bush attribute. This is used mainly for object-type characters on maps, such as doors and treasure chests. It can also be used in combination with the dollar sign ($) special character.
    Adding a dollar sign ($) to the beginning of a file name allows you to treat one character as one file. In this case, the size of the character will be one-third of the width and one-fourth of the height of the file. It can also be used in combination with the exclamation point (!) special character."
     
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