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Messages - eishiya
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General Discussion / Re: Potential Activity
« on: Yesterday at 02:24:36 pm »
Another idea I had just before I passed out: something like the annual hex pixel thing but with animation, an iterative pass it along game where we start with a concept and have people animate 10 or so frames of it and try and get it to a full x-minutes length or so.
It sounds like a fun way to get some people in animation and would get an interesting collaborative result out
I like this general idea, but something like this has to be done serially, by one person at a time, doesn't it? The great thing about the hexquisite corpse and most other collabs is that parts of those can be done simultaneously. And with animation, the wait times are probably going to be quite a bit longer, and later participants are likely to feel more pressure and restrictions to continue the style/story/mood set by the earlier animations.
I'd love to see an animation collab, but I think these are issues that need to be addressed for it to be more accessible and fun.

Perhaps it could be done like an animation version of PJ's ISO collabs: there is a fixed number of animation slots along the timeline, N frames each, and the first few participants can pick any slots they want, as long as they're non-adjacent. Once about 1/4~1/3 of the slots have been taken up this way and a few finished ones have been posted, later participants have to select a slot that's adjacent to a finished one (i.e. right before or after), and animate it so that their animation flows into the other. As the project gets closer to completion, people will have to fill slots that have animations just before and after them, and they might have to "blend" between two very different animations.
In this way, multiple people can work on entries at the same time, and the eventual "story" can be some hexquisite corpse-like nonsense because the animation is seeded by a larger number of animations by people who haven't yet seen each other's entries, rather than just one. Each of the three "stages" of this project (1. creating bits of animation in isolation, 2. flowing into/out from one existing animation, 3. filling in the gap between two finished animations) provides a different sort of challenge as well, which might encourage repeat entries (if those are allowed) and different stages might appeal to different people.

You should sketch in more of the body. Drawing necks in isolation never ends well.
If you look at ref closely, you'll likely find that necks aren't a simple shape. In the front, they actually get narrower towards the bottom. In the back near the spine, they also go "in" a bit. But then they have the narrow muscles that come out frontward a little from behind the ear, but come together at the collarbone, and there are the muscles that connect the neck to the shoulder, which also give the neck a wider base on the sides towards the back. I probably explained it weird, here's an image. I recommend looking at lots of ref, to build up a 3D mental image. 2D doesn't do necks justice. Remember, you probably also have your own neck you can look at.

Here's another sketch to give you a rough idea of what I mean, but I don't recommend following it, it's been a long time since I did a proper neck study. Do your own studies so that you can understand what you're doing and how to simplify it. You probably have your own ideas about how soft/muscular/tendony you want this character's neck to look.

General Discussion / Re: Potential Activity
« on: June 24, 2017, 02:19:38 pm »
I also like that critique idea. It's "get your thread featured: prize edition".

Pixel Art / Re: Sandcrawler trolls
« on: June 22, 2017, 07:25:26 pm »
They all have rather weak silhouettes, which means that at a glance, it's hard to tell what they're doing and the weapons they're holding. Ideally, the poses should read clearly even if you fill in the entire sprite a single colour. Yours don't read very well:

Try not having their arms just hang at their sides, give them more interesting poses.

In addition, your sprites are actually already quite close to being silhouettes - your colours have very low contrast, so it's hard to make out the different parts. For example, their arms almost completely blend into their torsos. When you're working, make sure you keep a preview window open at all times that displays your sprite at 1x. If you can't clearly see what you're working on at 1x, you need to remedy that, even if it looks clear zoomed in.

Speaking of 1x, you should post your work at 1x. The forum has a zoom feature, and it's a lot easier to give feedback if one can easily choose how zoomed in to see a piece. In addition, it's less hassle to make edits when the piece isn't pre-zoomed.

Pixel Art / Re: [WIP][C&C] Parchment Style Pixel Palette
« on: June 22, 2017, 02:08:37 pm »
Are you going for a "stains on the parchment" effect, or a "drawn on the parchment" effect? In the latter case, you should certainly have at least one dark colour for important gameplay elements (characters, interactive objects) that isn't found on in the parchment texture itself.
In the former case, you should study GameBoy games like Wario Land and Trip World, which use monochrome 4-colour palettes to great effect.
Personally, I think allowing yourself one darker colour (doesn't have to be an additional colour, you could darken your darkest one) would be best. Your current palette looks washed out and dull to look at. Even if that's intentional, most players prefer something with more contrast.

The trick in either case is to avoid using your darkest colours anywhere the characters might overlap, have them always on top of your lightest colours. This is as much a palette challenge as it is a tile- and level-design one.

Pixel Art / Re: [WIP] overworld sprite
« on: June 21, 2017, 04:43:46 pm »
You should see how the sprite looks against the backdrop of in-game tiles before you start tweaking the colours. I agree with CFK that you need way more contrast, but the way you achieve that contrast will depend on what the environment looks like.

Something else to consider is how you can use the character design to create contrast. If you know all the environments will be dark, perhaps putting the characters in light-coloured clothing might be more effective than dressing them in dark colours. That way, you can darken those light colours and make them bluer to create the look of night, while maintaining plenty of contrast between the characters and their environment.

Alternatively, perhaps all your environment is snowy or otherwise light, in which case it's good to have a consistently dark character (though a bit more contrast within the characters would still be good).

In all cases, you should have at least at least some roughly drawn environments to put your characters into. Never design elements in isolation.

General Discussion / Re: Potential Activity
« on: June 21, 2017, 02:52:37 pm »
@CFK: People who are interested in getting free art xP I thought this site's purpose was to help each other improve their own art? Getting a commission can serve to that end, but most people who do something for free art are usually just there for free art. Seen a lot of people use small freebies like that to try to promote themselves, their other projects, etc, never worked out well ):

I feel like any activity with some sort of reward is best as a little extra for people who are already on the site, not as a way of promoting the site.

Pixel Art / Re: RPG/2D zelda type sprite tutorials?
« on: June 21, 2017, 01:50:21 am »
2.5D is a very broad term, it can refer to any of a large number of methods to make things look more 3D while being 2D. Some more specific terms for this is "3/4 perspective" or "RPG perspective" (even though there's no perspective), or "RPG view".

Cyangmou has a pretty good explanation of the logic behind RPG perspective in this tutorial. Make sure not to miss part 2, linked in the description.

The basic idea behind RPG perspective is that the y axis represents both depth and height, so you'll see both the fronts and tops of objects, but not the sides, bottoms, or backs. For a more natural look, you scale the depth and height by 3/4. Without the scaling, you get an oblique projection, which looks unnatural. Beyond that, it's mostly a matter of your taste as an artist. You can always fudge things if that makes them look better.

Pixel Art / Re: RPG/2D zelda type sprite tutorials?
« on: June 20, 2017, 11:43:22 pm »
Can you post some examples of what you mean?

2.5D means many things, and I don't know of any Zelda games that are 2.5D. Do you mean isometric? 2D with parallax effects? Something else?

Have you tried anything so far? If so, please post it! It's easier to give pointers if one can see where your problems lie.

General Discussion / Re: Potential Activity
« on: June 20, 2017, 08:34:16 pm »
Do giveaways bring in enough people who stay to be worth it? It seems more like a way to get a lot of temporary, but ultimately worthless, exposure and a bunch of dead accounts.
I think it would be more effective to instead toss some tendrils out to other platform in the form of Twitter/Tumblr/whatever posts promoting stuff from the feature chests, weekly "good thread" features that aren't quite feature chest material, that sort of thing. Things like that are more likely to get the attention of the sorts of people who'd actually end up using the site.

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