The Resource WIP Thread 3

Robert-Character Creator

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I've finally made some progress on my sprite, as well as figured out how to create a gif (though it's an absolute pain...)!

Walking_Right_Zoom.gif

I was dissatisfied with her head and hair, so I redid them, again; I also reworked the legs, arms, and dress to be less bad. Everything's looking much better this time around, though I still have to shade the animated portion of the hair, as well as work on the lip area.

Here is an older version, for reference.

Sprite_Player_10_Testing_ZOOM_07.png

Any critique, as always, is appreciated.
 
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dahlys

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Hi, I am making sprites for the first time and it turned out weird ._. I'm not sure how to do pixel art so I drew the sprite on grid paper and colored it in, then scanned it, re-scaled, and adjusted the color in photoshop. How does everyone normally makes sprites that are nice and symmetric to the pixel? The sprite is attached, it is a vehicle.
 

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Robert-Character Creator

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What do you mean by "symmetric to the pixel"? Your sprite appears symmetrical as-is?
 

dahlys

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What do you mean by "symmetric to the pixel"? Your sprite appears symmetrical as-is?
If you zoom in you'll notice that line thickness is not even and the parts of the images that should overlap perfectly actually don't (like the body of the robot). The lines looked even on paper but when I shrunk the image they became really blurry and the thickness very uneven.
 

Robert-Character Creator

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Ah, see, the problem is in how you made it. By scanning the paper and then resizing it, information was lost. Anytime you resize raster (pixel) art, it gets screwed up, unless you get the proportions perfect on the first try.

It's better to simply make it from scratch in an art program. I use MS Paint, so I don't have a lot of ground to stand on, haha, but I first create a grid (you'd want a 3x4) to draw the sprites in, so they don't get out of alignment. Then, I copy/paste as needed and make my adjustments to each frame.

I hope this actually helps and I'm not just talking out of my ███. :D
 
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Sharm

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Yep, the sprites are exact to the pixel because they're drawn pixel by pixel. Hand drawn sprites are really cool though, just a different art form. You should check out what people are doing with the dragonbones plugin to see some cool examples. Each style has it's own strengths and weaknesses, which one to choose depends on what you want to do.

MS Paint is not a good tool, which is why Robert is joking about it. If you don't yet have an art program preference GIMP is better and free.
 

dahlys

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Ah, see, the problem is in how you made it. By scanning the paper and then resizing it, information was lost. Anytime you resize raster (pixel) art, it gets screwed up, unless you get the proportions perfect on the first try.

It's better to simply make it from scratch in an art program. I use MS Paint, so I don't have a lot of ground to stand on, haha, but I first create a grid (you'd want a 3x4) to draw the sprites in, so they don't get out of alignment. Then, I copy/paste as needed and make my adjustments to each frame.

I hope this actually helps and I'm not just talking out of my ███. :D
I see! I guess I should only draw on paper as a guideline, then make the actual sprite pixel by pixel. It's hard work! You guys are amazing for making all that stuff O_O
Yep, the sprites are exact to the pixel because they're drawn pixel by pixel. Hand drawn sprites are really cool though, just a different art form. You should check out what people are doing with the dragonbones plugin to see some cool examples. Each style has it's own strengths and weaknesses, which one to choose depends on what you want to do.

MS Paint is not a good tool, which is why Robert is joking about it. If you don't yet have an art program preference GIMP is better and free.
I love the look of the dragonbones plugin, but there appears to be quite the steep learning curve so I've been putting it off! I would prefer for my new sprites to blend in with the character generator ones, since I have a game where you could pick a fight with any npc and there are thus many chargen sprites. That's why, I would prefer more of a pixellated look.

I've never done any digital drawing, so making pictures using only the computer is new to me. However, I am pretty familiar with photoshop, being an amateur photographer. Editing and creating are a completely different story though! I've still got a lot to learn :D

Meanwhile, I've tried to salvage what I can of the previous sprite pixel-by-pixel. The bobbing/wobbling motion doesn't look too bad to me even though it was an accident, what do you think?
animated.gif
 

Sharm

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That's a good start. I like the wobble too, happy accidents are one of the fun things about art. If you want to pick up pixel art there are a lot of really great tutorials out there. My favorites are a bit old but still very good. So you want to be a pixel artist is a tutorial that I used when I started out. Pixeljoint is a great place overall and they have a very good tutorial. My favorite place starting out was Pixelation which has a fantastic WIP feedback section, though it's been a long time since I was active there. There's probably even more out there that I don't know about, I currently have been enjoying some time lapse pixeling on YouTube, I find it fun to see how other people handle their workflow and I've learned a few things in the process. Of course, not everyone who posts a video on YouTube has any skill, so go for the really good looking ones. And I love helping new RM pixel artist, so once you've given some tutorials a lookover feel free to post here and ask for whatever help or clarification you need.
 

Robert-Character Creator

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Now that I've learned how to make GIFs, I can crank one out in ~5 minutes. I decided to update my sprite the best I could and make GIFs of each walking animation and Idle, so here they are!

Walking_Front_Zoom.gif Walking_Left_Zoom.gif Walking_Right_Zoom.gif Walking_Back_WIP_Zoom.gif

These are the normal walking sprites. They're all mostly done, with the exception of the rear-facing sprite, which I massively dislike; it uses the arms of the forward sprite, has little movement in shading or clothing, and has a poor walk cycle.

Idle_Front_Zoom.gif

This is the Idle animation. It's not quite timed like in the game, but it's a functional demonstration of how it will look. I also forgot to recolor the cheeks to the new hue, so forgive me for that. The other Idle animations are not nearly ready to display; none of them are using the new profile sprite.

Walking_Front_Zoom.gif Walking_Left_Zoom.gif Walking_Right_Zoom.gif Walking_Back_WIP_Zoom.gif

These are the new diagonal sprites. Sorry for the small size, and the box around the second one.

Here's the spritesheets, for those who wish to see it.

Sprite_Player_11_Testing_[f8].png
Sprite_Player_10_Idle_Front_[f1].png The colored areas are placeholders for future sprites.

Any critique, as always, is appreciated.
 

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starlight dream

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Hi. What I notice about the animation where we see her walking from the back, is that 2 frames have her standing still (with both feet at the same,, straight level). During the animation, everytime those frames show up, it looks like a glitch (to me)

The problem is neither of her two feet is ever lower from that "standing level.).. If you look at the animation where she walks towards us, her feet have a frame each, where the foot comes lower (more forward) than her standing position.
But the walk where she walks away, has no frame where each foot comes lower. So you have to edit it a bit so when her foot is the most back possible, it is drawn lower.

Does it make sense? I find it a little hard to explain :).....

Cheers! ^.^ b.....
 

Robert-Character Creator

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@starlight dream

Yes, what you're saying makes sense. The reason those two frames exist is because they represent the beginning of the animation, and the middle. So it goes:
Normal -> Right leg steps forward ->Normal -> Left leg steps forward
This setup is no longer necessary, due to my implementation of an Idle animation that appears after 5 frames, that's essentially just the "Normal" sprite standing still. (The sleeping Idle Animation activates separately.) Thus, the animation should have no frames where the character is standing still.

As for the leg not moving back, I had it that way before, though I don't remember why I removed it. It just needs to be worked on in general, I've just been avoiding it.

I actually wasn't looking for critique on that one in particular, (I've been putting off updating it for a couple weeks...) but I'm happy you brought it up, so thanks!

Is there anything else you notice?
 

starlight dream

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I also notice that I like your diagonal sprites, even at this size they look well designed, how their limbs are positioned.
The sleeping/iddle animation is a also fine IMO, I love how she lowers her head to then fall asleep.

The way her arms move in the back-walking frame is good too.

Possible corrections:
In the animation she walks forward there is a white pixel on her forehead and on the idle image as well. It's an insignificant thing you would've picked up anyway. Lol

When she walks right and left, we can see a bit of hair in front of her ear that moves. I suggest keeping that hair fixed without any motion. Choose what position you prefer for it, it doesn't matter which one.
Because it moves in a way that it looks like it vanishes and reappears. Anyway I find it a bit odd, but if you like it like that, I won't boycott your game for it. :p


@dahlys I love your chicken walker! Like others said the lines get blurry when the size is reduced.
One option is to simply fix some pixels after the image is reduced, if you want it more symmetrical.

I think it looks great already and moves so well. :)
When I make sprites I do a lot of copy pasting So where the chicken walker goes left, I'll design the 1st image. Then I'd copy the top part of the walker (it stays the same in the 3 frames) and paste it in the middle frame + 3rd frame.

To make the walker going right, I'd copy the 3 left frames, mirror them so they look in the right direction, and simply paste all 3 in the Right direction.
It's the fastest way & the symmetry stays the same in all the frames.

If you design it on paper and then scan it in, instead of scanning all the frames, create the 1, 2 or 3 you need (side, front, back), and scan those only.
Then clean the pixels on the computer, and copy paste them to create the missing frames on the computer.

You'll notice the rtP characters usually look the same, both on their right and left side, it's for this "mirroring" reason.

I encourage you to use the technique you enjoy the most. ^^b Learning to make pixel-sprites directly on the computer will save you some extra time. But your technique has fantastic results already..
 

Sharm

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First off, loving how smooth it all works, it's much more visually attractive when you see it in motion. Good job. Now for the fixit list. ^_^; The growing and retracting sideburns are not making any sense on the side views. Behind or in front of the ear, you really need to pick one. As someone who has long hair I can tell you if it's in front of your ear it's not moving back unless you put it there by hand. Instead of the motion there let the bottom of the hair overlap more of her back as it swishes towards the viewer. The back facing walk should deform the bottom of the skirt the same way the front facing one does. The little jaggie bits at the end of the back view hair should move somehow, clumping together into twos and singles in different spots and so on. I'm expecting that the motion on the shading for the hair is coming later, is that correct? If not it absolutely needs way more movement.

Oh, almost forgot. Hair movement is reactionary. To make it look really good you need to offset the timing so it's just a few frames after the foot movement.
 

Robert-Character Creator

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@Sharm

This all makes perfect sense, actually, but as for the back-facing sprite, I basically need to redo every feature of it; there's actually very little difference between it now and the ones in the placeholder slots. Any yes, for her hair, I design the hair's movement first, then correct the shading as needed.

For any other views, the hair's movement is actually being caused by her shoulders moving during the arms' swinging, and not the movement of her hip and legs. I could never make her hair 'bounce' on her back like hair does in real life; I found it too difficult and not very aesthetically pleasing.

@starlight dream

When I first designed her original sprites, the white dot (actually very light skin color!) represented a highlight. I was proud of it back then, but I dislike it the more I see it nowadays. I'll darken it a little so it's not so harsh.

Sprite 02.png
The original anatomical frame for my sprites, with the female child being the earliest surviving copy of the main character.

If you can see any detail, you'll see that dark spots represented areas like elbows and knees, medium tone represented areas of skin folding, muscle, or bodily structures, and the lightest tone was for open areas of skin, like on the forehead. The single forehead pixel is the only one remaining on the modern sprite.

Oh and I also found a larger version of the diagonal sprites, while I was searching for that. Sorry it only has three of them. :)

Sprite_Player_10_Testing_ZOOM_10.png
 
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dahlys

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This may just be me and my bad eyes (or monitor), but I can barely see the contrast in her dress on a light background (white, light blue, yellow), especially for the non-zoomed in version. Maybe use some darker hues for the shadows on the clothes?
On the contrary, the color contrast for the naked spite is good and clear.
 

starlight dream

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Your anatomical template is very detailed, good work on that.

The problem with the white pixel is that it's the only one present, so it stands out like a mistake. If you had a dark background it would stand out more.

On the diagonal sprite, one thing to fix is the two images where we see her back. Remove the 4 pixels of hair that appear below her chin. It's not possible for hair to show there with her shoulders in that place. :)
Thanks for putting the green background on the diagonal figures, it's easier to see the colours.
 

Robert-Character Creator

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@dahlys

The game I'm making in very dark, (nighttime indoors kind of dark) so the contrast is greater in-game.

@starlight dream

Thanks for the tip about the diagonal sprites. I never noticed those four shouldn't be there.
 

Robert-Character Creator

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@Marquise*

The adult male and female models will be used for generic in-game characters, and the male child will be used to make a secret character. I'm not sure how else they can be used.
 

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