Zyoshiro

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Some people are scripters, spriters, pixel artist or faceset artists. I have been told that we should learn at least one of these game development skills if we are serious in using RPG Maker. As for me, I have yet to learn anything...I haven't really tried any of this yet but I thought of trying to become a faceset artist. I particularly like the RTP facesets and would like to learn how to edit them. I know a lot of patience and skill is required and I'm not sure if I'm even cut out for it but I could at least give it a try.

So, I'm asking where should I go or are there any tutorials regarding this matter? I really don't know where to start searching...
 

kerbonklin

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All of that (except scripting) really is just Digital Art in general. Photoshop, GIMP, Paint.NET, etc. With those programs comes having to know the knowledge of it's tools and an artistic thought process. Things like RTP edits are well, basically just re-coloring stuff or drawing small things onto them using the programs mentioned above. It's not really "Art" though IMO and it still kinda screams RTP to other people. I personally just prefer using the Character Generator for that reason. (if using Ace)

Anyways, you don't have to be an artist at all to seriously use RPG Maker. You don't have to make your own resources for everything in your game, but as long as you are using some kind of custom resources. (Cause RTP is kinda bleh, not special, etc.to other RM users) I'm nowhere near an artist or a professional scripter but my project can be considered serious since there are a lot of features that set it apart from the defaults of what RM and some of my used scripts include.

My personal thoughts on what is a "serious" RM project is like:

If using default front-view battle system, use custom cool HUDs and non-RTP battler sprites

Let's say you're using Battle Symphony, having full custom use of self-made symphony tag animations for all your skills.

Let's say you're using Holders Battlers, having none of those Holder sprites that the guy provides on his site. Make your own sprites.

Actors and various NPC sprites aren't Eric/Ralph/Natalie/etc.

Not using TP unless it's very customized.

Whole database has been cleared and new items of everything have been made. (No default database stuff unless maybe states)

Custom animations (you can use the RTP animation spritesheets but when it comes to the actual animation building, make it your own)

I think you get the jist. Basically staying away from program and script defaults of any kind.
 

SomaelCK

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You will not impress most RM users with RTP- ridden project, but that doesn't mean you can't make serious game with only RTP.

It comes from my experience that most ppl who do not know about RM rarely care about being RTP or not.
So, if your aim is not about impressing the veteran RM users, then don't feel bad about using RTP.  Even if you pull "The Hotblooded Teenager saves the world again" type of RPG with all RTP, the casual audience will eat it up (based on my exp). Just make a bug free, completed game and see for yourself :)
 
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Kes

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Also, in my view, you can't learn everything at once and all for your first project.  Make your first game knowing that you will learn a huge amount in the process about what the program itself can do, how the various elements work together; use some ready-made scripts to do some of the things you have in mind; use some of the great graphic resources that you will find free in the resources section of the site.  Trying to learn everything before you start could mean that you never actually get round to the enjoyable part of making a game; it will all become too heavy.  Making a decent game isn't easy, but it should be fun.
 

Engr. Adiktuzmiko

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I agree with Somael, you can please normal players with game full of RTP stuff... just never try to impress RM users with that, coz it will probably mostly won't work... After all, people who know exactly how to make these stuff, will always be far more harsh in giving critiques... Plus your game would probably be made for the normal players anyways...


Though if you want a game that will probably be worth of reaching high-end game portals, then you can't probably hope to achieve that with just RTP stuff...


Anyway, if you only want to specialize in this art thing, try to read general tutorials on image editing and practice a lot...
 

sabao

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As far as RPG Maker goes, I only really see two very important skill sets needed for anyone starting out: a decent sense of aesthetics and the ability to write.


Nevermind scripting for now (You'll pick up a few of it as you go.). If you're new at this, you probably shouldn't be biting off more than you can chew anyway. Graphics? That's what the RTP is for. Half the appeal of RPG Maker is it helps you halfway by providing most of the graphics you'll need, so why not take advantage? You're not going to be producing the most original game out there, but speaking as someone who's been doing and loving this for a decade and a half now, the gratification of completing something is reward in itself.

I agree with Somael, you can please normal players with game full of RTP stuff... just never try to impress RM users with that, coz it will probably mostly won't work... After all, people who know exactly how to make these stuff, will always be far more harsh in giving critiques... Plus your game would probably be made for the normal players anyways...


Though if you want a game that will probably be worth of reaching high-end game portals, then you can't probably hope to achieve that with just RTP stuff...


Anyway, if you only want to specialize in this art thing, try to read general tutorials on image editing and practice a lot...
People have only been getting away with RTP graphics for the general market because it hasn't been exposed as much. With the rise and abuse of Kickstarter and Steam's Greenlight, we're probably going to see that change in a hurry. Unless you've either made a game that's already a critical darling (which are exceptions to the rule), or you're after a niche market that's totally cool with and knows the game was made with RPG Maker (RPG fan sites for example are very generous when it comes to playtesting RPG Maker games), you may be in for a lot of disappointment.


Personally I'd prefer to shoot for presenting something to the local RM community first. These people at least know the limitations of the software, and understand the hobbyist culture of most fellow RM developers so feedback/criticism take these factors into account. The larger market may be more likely to tear your game apart.
 

Zyoshiro

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Well, yeah, I'm quite new actually haven't been able to spend much time on using RM either. But I've got the basics down. Have created a few 'test games' for myself but nothing like a real game yet...working on it...Anyway, the reason why I posted this topic is because I feel that the RTP character designs are limited or don't fit my criteria and I don't like the VXAce generator either, so I thought it would be nice to create my own character designs...but yeah, I guess should not be so demanding and just use what is provided. After all, I'm still just starting and have not taken it so seriously yet. Shouldn't get ahead of myself. Anyway, thanks for your comments.
 

orochii

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It comes from my experience that most ppl who do not know about RM rarely care about being RTP or not.

So, if your aim is not about impressing the veteran RM users, then don't feel bad about using RTP.  Even if you pull "The Hotblooded Teenager saves the world again" type of RPG with all RTP, the casual audience will eat it up (based on my exp). Just make a bug free, completed game and see for yourself :)
Okay, I actually haven't "tested" it thoroughly, but if a person sees two games with the same graphics, indifferently if talking about RM games or not, what do they think? I remember when TLoZ:Majora's Mask came out, first thing I saw about it was a review where the only thing between TLoZMM and a perfect score was that all assets looked the same as its predecessor (and well, it ended up in a "98%"). Because TLoZMM and OoT look almost the same. Right?

But I don't know, maybe people just don't see enough RM games.

===

As for the OP's question. If you're going to start off develop an "art" skill, you better start off thinking of it as what it is. There is no "face maker job", you start drawing, and doing digital artwork stuff. Just grab a pencil and start drawing. I would suggest to start off learning to "draw", and not learn "to draw persons/manga/whatever specific thing". But as I'm not you, I'm not going to say anything. Just care about learning general concepts like line quality (their shapes, thickness, transparency), about textures... And when drawing specific things, care about proportions and negative spaces (the counterform). Learn a little about visual language.

Still, as someone said before (I think was Tsugumo at his "So you wanna be a pixel artist" tutorial), an "artist" is 99% practice, 1% genius. Practice as often as you can, and everything will be fine. Best if you care to challenge yourself often too (can I do/achieve this thing? let's see!).

And as (somehow) some people already said, know this is going to take some time... Best to start early, but it will take time to give the results you are "hoping". Actually, what are you hoping for? That's a good question to make to yourself.

Anyway, cheers,

Orochii Zouveleki
 
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sabao

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Well, yeah, I'm quite new actually haven't been able to spend much time on using RM either. But I've got the basics down. Have created a few 'test games' for myself but nothing like a real game yet...working on it...Anyway, the reason why I posted this topic is because I feel that the RTP character designs are limited or don't fit my criteria and I don't like the VXAce generator either, so I thought it would be nice to create my own character designs...but yeah, I guess should not be so demanding and just use what is provided. After all, I'm still just starting and have not taken it so seriously yet. Shouldn't get ahead of myself. Anyway, thanks for your comments.
Lika muramasa said, the skill to produce custom graphics takes time to develop. While relying on others is viable, it's difficult to pull off. In the meantime, settle for what you have and improve as you go.
 

Berylstone

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Lika muramasa said, the skill to produce custom graphics takes time to develop. While relying on others is viable, it's difficult to pull off. In the meantime, settle for what you have and improve as you go.
Amen to that.

I am learning the hard way that while employing a dedicated graphics designer to do your work can improve the results, it can be frustrating to rely on.  This is especially true if you are still in the process of creating your game.  So I too recommend settling for what you are able to do yourself, at least for now, and try to improve upon it as you go.
 

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