Sprites in Adobe Illustrator

Discussion in 'Resource Support' started by aaronjmcd2, Aug 10, 2016.

  1. aaronjmcd2

    aaronjmcd2 Veteran Veteran

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    Hello all!


    I was wondering if anyone had some insight in how to make and import sprites using Adobe Illustrator?  What kind of file do you create, and how do you make your image compatible with RPGMaker MV?


    Thanks!
     
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  2. mlogan

    mlogan Global Moderators Global Mod

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    I've moved this thread to Resource Support. Please be sure to post your threads in the correct forum next time. Thank you.



    It really doesn't matter what program you use to create your sprites, formatting is the important part. It needs to be a .png file and I highly recommend using a transparent background. I'm not sure if Illustrator has that capability or not.


    As for how they are formatted, this guide explains what you need to know about that. http://forums.rpgmakerweb.com/index.php?/topic/63612-sprite-sheet-formats-and/
     
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  3. Andar

    Andar Veteran Veteran

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    Unfortunately mlogan didn't know what Illustrator is, or he would have answered differently.


    Adobe Illustrator is a vector-based drawing program (as opposed to the pixel-based Adobe Photoshop). That means that any picture done in Illustrator needs to be rendered into a pixel-based export before it can be used.


    That is possible (in fact it's one of Illustrator's main functions to export to different-sized pixel pictures), but it is an additional step of work, and with the numbers of pixels used by the low-screen RPG-Makers, the results would be sub-optimal.


    Photoshop would be a lot better solution for this.
     
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  4. Celianna

    Celianna Tileset artist Global Mod

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    Yup, Illustrator is more for the printing industry, it uses vectors. You want vexels.


    Basically, don't use Illustrator for your sprite work, but Photoshop instead.
     
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  5. mlogan

    mlogan Global Moderators Global Mod

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    Actually, I do know what Illustrator is.
     
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  6. aaronjmcd2

    aaronjmcd2 Veteran Veteran

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    Thanks for the great responses!


    But I'm also interested in actually drawing my sprites in a software.  Should I draw in Illustrator and then export to photoshop?  And how do I insure the image has a transparent background?


    Thanks a bunch y'all 
     
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  7. Celianna

    Celianna Tileset artist Global Mod

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    No, draw straight in Photoshop, don't draw in Illustrator. That's basically creating more work for yourself that isn't needed. You can export to a PNG file with a transparent background, but don't work in Illustrator in the first place ... :p
     
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  8. Sharm

    Sharm Pixel Tile Artist Veteran

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    This is such an odd conversation.  Vectors are tricky enough that usually people who can actually use Illustrator with enough skill to prefer it know enough about computer graphics to not have these sorts of questions.  Illustrator graphics are always on transparent backgrounds, you have to purposefully add a background in if you want one, so there's no worries there.  The difficulty I've always had in doing things exclusively in Illustrator is also its strength; vectors can be any size.  This means that the scale is rather fluid, which makes it not as well suited for something like RPG Maker graphics, since pixel precision is needed at some point in the creation process.  Forcing Illustrator to work for "computer only results" instead of print ones has always been a hassle every time I've attempted it, especially with the way the canvas works.  I get where Celianna's coming from, especially since Photoshop has vector tools.  Even importing things into Photoshop for the finish work is a bit strange, because things never transfer over quite as cleanly or the size you expect.  I only have experience with it because I learned both programs back before Photoshop's vector tools were of any real use.


    If, like I suspect, you're not an illustrator expert and are just looking for very clean lines, then you should just use whatever art program you're most comfortable with and not worry so much about the line work.  All you really need to do is work at double the intended size and scale down, that will solve most if not all problems with unsteady lines.
     
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  9. Arcmagik

    Arcmagik Game Developer Veteran

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    I had this exact same conversation with my wife that works with both Illustrator and Photoshop. I wanted my pictures to come out super clean and be able to scale down to any size I decided to make the sprites without the lose you can suffer when scaling pixels! Ultimately I decided against doing it (mostly because I would have to commission the work and if you know how to use Illustrator you charge a premium from what I could tell making just one sprite cost... alot). However now that I read this thread I see there was more to it than just cost!


    I would suggest that you do other graphics in Illustrator though... I was having a serious problem with degradation of fonts (and I wasn't even scaling them!) but she did the fonts in Illustrator for me before importing them.


    I guess it really depends on how skilled you are with both programs as she made my title paper using both Illustrator and Photoshop in 2 hours... of course... she did that for a living so highly skilled.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 10, 2016
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  10. aaronjmcd2

    aaronjmcd2 Veteran Veteran

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    Well thanks for all the great responses everyone, I guess I'll just try to stick with Photoshop as suggested.  I'm not super-skilled as Sharm "supsected."  It's just what i have the most experience with, which was why I was wanting to try to use it if possible.


    Thanks!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 10, 2016
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  11. Sharm

    Sharm Pixel Tile Artist Veteran

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    @Arcmagik Fonts and other text applications are probably the number one best way to use illustrator.


    @aaronjmcd2  You're the most used to illustrator?  That is very unusual.  In that case this is going to be an interesting transition for you. 
     
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