AuthorTopic: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]  (Read 57582 times)

Offline PypeBros

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[wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

on: September 24, 2011, 08:19:19 am
After defeating the assaults of angry apples in the green zone, Bilou is now back in the school zone where spidey-sponges, ink-throwing pits and bored sharpeners get into his way. I'm still looking for advice on how to make the art better. There's a playable demo level available. And a small arcade-like rush game under construction (but already fun to play).

Bilou animations


monsters revamp
pendat
-- inkjet
dumblador (in-engine capture)

Latest updates:

-

<-- ink pit animation
« Last Edit: August 29, 2014, 09:34:11 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Deep ink pit

Reply #1 on: September 30, 2011, 12:01:29 pm

^ mockup initially submitted for C+C (NPA-placeholders ink and background)


Update: now with pixel ink. Am I heading in the right direction ? When building the mockup, I've got the feeling that waves of the ink should be larger.
« Last Edit: September 03, 2013, 11:51:51 am by PypeBros »

Offline Redshrike

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Re: [wip] Deep ink pit

Reply #2 on: September 30, 2011, 02:35:28 pm
Just out of curiosity, is there something I'm missing about the sponges?  they seem kind of out of place in a book/ink-themed zone, and they don't really fit visually either; compared with your other elements, they look kind of rough and unfinished.  The bindings on the books also look a bit unusual.  They're quite thick, and seem to extend over the pages.
I actually kinda like the look of the sea of ink as you have it now.  It's definitely worth experimenting with larger waves, but these do a pretty good job of conveying the look simply and effectively.
One thing that might be fun (or you might already be doing) would be to have bookends occasionally appear in the walls.  That could add a bit of texture and diversity as well.
Anyway, crits aside, I really do like the way this is going.

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Re: [wip] Deep ink pit

Reply #3 on: September 30, 2011, 04:19:54 pm
Just out of curiosity, is there something I'm missing about the sponges?  they seem kind of out of place in a book/ink-themed zone, and they don't really fit visually either; compared with your other elements, they look kind of rough and unfinished. 

First, thanks for your comments. The theme is "an old (197x?) school", where the sponge was hanging by a thread near the black board, with the water container just beneath. I see it as a "natural" odd-and-round-shaped sponge, compared to those synthetic-and-squarish sponges *I* have used during my childhood.
But yeah, I do agree that they're still very rough and need to be polished. Gameplay-wise, I've inserted them in that "ink pit" level because I believe it's interesting to have elements that can float for a limited amount of time, and sponges are just like that: once soaked, they sink.

Quote
The bindings on the books also look a bit unusual.  They're quite thick, and seem to extend over the pages.

Aha... Yeah, I think I see what you mean. I'll hunt for some references to see if I can come with something else. The "justification" would be the perspective: the book is not 90° with the eye, but rather 75° or so, so you see a small part of the binding and a large part of the pages. I'll try and see whether I manage to render that better.

Quote
I actually kinda like the look of the sea of ink as you have it now.  It's definitely worth experimenting with larger waves, but these do a pretty good job of conveying the look simply and effectively.
^_^

Quote
One thing that might be fun (or you might already be doing) would be to have bookends occasionally appear in the walls.  That could add a bit of texture and diversity as well.
Anyway, crits aside, I really do like the way this is going.
I hadn't thought about bookends yet for this vertical level ... I'll brainstorm about something interesting to come with.

Offline PypeBros

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Re: [wip] Deep ink pit

Reply #4 on: September 30, 2011, 09:32:02 pm

Tried to fix perspective, volume and shading on the books.

Here's also a 32x32 tile for the ink animated ... somehow, it doesn't work that well once tiled  :blind:

Offline Wes

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Re: [wip] Deep ink pit

Reply #5 on: September 30, 2011, 09:49:47 pm
The problem with those water tiles imo is that the peaks look like they slush forward then back again. instead try to make them move—one should fall into the next to create the illusion that each peak is sliding across the screen. that breaks the obvious tiling.

Also once that's nailed down, I think you could really make the animation a lot subtler—and a lot slower. maybe it shouldn't have those kind of wavey peaks at all. when I think about ink or oil vs water I imagine it being all goopy and sticky rather than pure liquid. even closer to a tar pit kind of thing.

as for the sponges, the 197X school setting is clever but the problem is that people just won't really get it. it doesn't fit in with the modern image of a classroom and people won't naturally think that way at all. can you replace them with more modern chalkboard brushes? i do think they could totally work as maybe a sub-boss or something but as a regular common enemy it makes people question.

Offline Elk

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Re: [wip] Deep ink pit

Reply #6 on: October 01, 2011, 09:26:25 am
Hehe cute attempt at the rayman style :P props for that! I think youre focusing way too much on using techniques right rather than the objects itself




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Re: [wip] Deep ink pit

Reply #7 on: October 01, 2011, 08:55:17 pm
The problem with those water tiles imo is that the peaks look like they slush forward then back again. instead try to make them move—one should fall into the next to create the illusion that each peak is sliding across the screen. that breaks the obvious tiling.
Note that I'm aiming at a stationary wave here, like the one you can produce in your bathtub. Not propagating waves like the one you'd see in a river or at sea.

->
Here's an improved version. Two more frames and (hopefully) slowed down speed ... but setting the speed with gimp is still much Trial/error :/ . I hope I managed to break the "teleporting peak" artefact.

Quote
Also once that's nailed down, I think you could really make the animation a lot subtler—and a lot slower. maybe it shouldn't have those kind of wavey peaks at all. when I think about ink or oil vs water I imagine it being all goopy and sticky rather than pure liquid. even closer to a tar pit kind of thing.
Thanks for the suggestion. I had no intend to have "oily" ink so far, but I'll investigate that.

Quote
can you replace them with more modern chalkboard brushes?
this is the kind of sponge I'm talking about. Chalkboard brushes would not make sense for the desired monster design. They're just too heavy. Plus, I've never seen any of them in a school here, only in Simpsons Cartoons.

Quote
Hehe cute attempt at the rayman style
Well, clearly, Ubisoft shoot our originality in the back 15 years ago with Picture City, but the school zone design even predates that. That being said, it's clear rayman on PSX *did* have an influence, although I'd credit Lewis Carol, Zool and Coolspot equally high for inspiration. I've indeed peeked a few colours on Rayman screenshots to see whether it'd be neat to have some hue shift in ink highlights, but that's basically all. I intentionally went for something much simpler that rayman's ink sea.

Now, if it's still close enough, okay, I'll lower my "this-is-a-ref" threshold and put a notice next time.

Mind to detail a bit more what you mean with "I think youre focusing way too much on using techniques right rather than the objects itself" ? What technique ? what am I doing wrong ? how would you proceed instead ?
« Last Edit: October 06, 2011, 12:13:08 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #8 on: October 03, 2011, 08:33:43 pm

Took the time to re-pixel the SpongeBop with my favourite editor ... and also retrieved (leftmost) "Dumblador", the pencil sharpener, which I have to reworked (rightmost) for better readability.

any thoughts?
« Last Edit: October 03, 2011, 09:37:30 pm by PypeBros »

Offline ABC

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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #9 on: October 04, 2011, 01:48:04 am
The lines of the circles in the binders are really weird.

Do you have a limited palette?
I think it would work better if you re-used a least one color from the books in the background.
The colours aren't very harmonious right now.

Maybe try to make the waves in the ink more like hills than spikes, since it's more like the liquid is slowly moving than actual waves.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #10 on: October 04, 2011, 09:00:01 am
The lines of the circles in the binders are really weird.
You mean the "metallic" reinforcement for the circular hole, right ? I don't like it much either, now that you attract my attention there. I'll try to improve it next.

Quote
Do you have a limited palette?
I think it would work better if you re-used a least one color from the books in the background.
The colours aren't very harmonious right now.
This is for a game on DS, so technically, I can have one 256 palette for tiles and one for sprites, although they're mostly the same in practice. The background so far is just a placeholder generated following a "make yourself a magohany texture" tutorial. I'm not surprised you don't see it harmonious, but I'm surprised you've got issues with the *colour* ... and even more wondering about picking a colour from the *books*, which are deliberately vibrants and saturated to pop out against the background. If you can provide an example through an edit, that'd help me to understand what you suggest.

Quote
Maybe try to make the waves in the ink more like hills than spikes, since it's more like the liquid is slowly moving than actual waves.
Looks like I'll definitely have to try this: that's what everybody seems to mention.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #11 on: October 04, 2011, 11:11:34 am
vs .

There are interesting things, indeed. I also doubled the exposition of the "spikest" frame, as I think there might lack some pendulum in my original ink swamp. Of course, a doubled frame with some details animation while keeping the same shape would work better.

My brain seems to do some resistance and tries to convince me that the spiky one is best because those spikes better transmit the idea that falling in the ink means sudden death.

Offline yrizoud

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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #12 on: October 05, 2011, 01:09:54 pm
Have you considered making this tile scroll ? It would show that these waves are caused by a wind.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #13 on: October 06, 2011, 09:18:51 am
Have you considered making this tile scroll ? It would show that these waves are caused by a wind.
(*sigh*)

This all happens within a giant school. There isn't supposed to be enough wind to cause waves. I try to make it look like a dangerous pool, not like a wild sea. I want the kind of waves that appear when something periodically disturb still "water", such as drops or bubbles. There's magic involved in the game, so I can easily decide that what makes the ink disturbed comes from lost balance in the magical field.

Plus, making it scroll is a matter of programming, not something I'd do at the pixel art level.

hope that makes what I need help with clearer.

Offline yrizoud

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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #14 on: October 06, 2011, 10:57:00 am
I intended the scrolling to be part of the tile graphics itself : a full animation cycle would include a 32 pixels movement so that it loops.
Of course it's only possible (and smooth) if there are 32 frames, or 16, 8 etc.

edit: like this
« Last Edit: October 06, 2011, 10:30:52 pm by yrizoud »

Offline ABC

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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #15 on: October 07, 2011, 07:16:45 am


Oh I didn't read your what you said about the sponge before making my edit. I went for a blocky/geometric shape which I now find pretty damn ugly. The character designs I made were just for fun anyway.

Anyway, I'm not sure of what use this could be for you, the statement really was to try and make things simpler.

I'll agree that this is overly simple: the shading, and the perspective aren't every interesting but I think as a whole it's more coherent than what you have showed. The fact that I'm using 10 colours helps I guess, but I'm pretty sure you could get the same result with more colours.

I really tried to make the lines clean, since some of yours are a bit messy.

Also, I used the darkest colour of the table and sponge as the lightest colour of the background. I think this makes everything more coherent while still having the foreground flash like you wanted.

Bear with me, this has to be like my 5th attempt at pixel art. :) (the wood texture lines weren't cleaned out because I'm lazy).

Je ne savais pas non plus que tu étais francophone avant de lire ton blog.
« Last Edit: October 07, 2011, 07:20:19 am by ABC »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #16 on: October 07, 2011, 09:27:15 am

Really interesting edit. It's much more simple that anything I'd have done myself, there's something that shines in it. Like if it was a real snapshot of a game on some 8-bit machine ... That's always a good thing to see through the eyes of someone else.

Having a more distant background will not work for all the levels, but your edit version convinced me that it could do a much better job that a soulless texture. I'll think about that.

Quote
<-pyp- :: -yrz->
@yrizoud: I haven't noticed your ink this morning. I must admit that there's something quite interesting in it. That "flow" effect it has, combined with the minor/major waves will certainly be interesting to study for location in my game where I have water/ink that "push" you in some direction.
« Last Edit: October 07, 2011, 01:58:31 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #17 on: October 13, 2011, 02:57:39 pm

An attempt to make the colours more harmonized. Not quite satisfied yet ... Am I at least going in the right direction ?
« Last Edit: October 13, 2011, 03:18:12 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #18 on: October 19, 2011, 01:00:43 pm

Tried a first rendition of inkjet.
I also tried an alternate colour for spongebop's eyes (on the right) to move away from it's current "monochromatic" look (on the left), but once on screen, it doesn't look so good  :(

Wish the zoom feature will come back soon. Holly Floppy! It is!
Any mistake you spot on inkjet's antialias ?
« Last Edit: April 07, 2013, 08:41:30 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #19 on: October 28, 2011, 11:49:55 am

Well, I'm still fighting with the colour harmonization and the (quick & dirty, but now hand-drawn) background. The 5-bit-per-color-channel of the nintendo DS distort the vibrant colours I managed to have on 13/10, so I'm trying an alternate approach, using colours of a former background that worked fairly well with the "woods zone" and using different hues.

Still, I'm not happy with the result. the whole scene is too grey, cold and sad for the overal spirit of the game. What it does well, is to provide the feeling of a more confined space. ABC, I tried several backgrounds inspired by your edit, but they were all "too open" and did not worked for the library level I have in mind.

Any help is welcome at this point. I really need some colour guru's vision to calibrate BG and FG together into something that works well.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #20 on: October 28, 2011, 12:18:57 pm


This is a smaller palette, but no effort has been made by me to unify it, just cleaning it up and pushing brightness/contrast. Does it help?

The biggest problem with your art is bad texturing, at this point, I'll return with specific edit and critique.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #21 on: October 28, 2011, 12:52:48 pm
This is a smaller palette, but no effort has been made by me to unify it, just cleaning it up and pushing brightness/contrast. Does it help?
That's the kind of fearless alternate I'm after, yes. Feel free to replace sprites with one-shade silouhetto if the overall colour count is already too high for other colour edits.

Quote
The biggest problem with your art is bad texturing, at this point, I'll return with specific edit and critique.
Ah. Well, that's not much of a surprise: it came out with quite much pain. I look forward for your advice.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2011, 02:42:12 pm by PypeBros »

Offline Helm

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #22 on: October 28, 2011, 03:59:11 pm


Okay,

1. is your book.

2. is the form broken down to its block shape.

3. is geometry, lit from above more or less. If a thing doesn't look good and identifiable on this stage, it won't look much better if you overrender it.

4. here I apply more detailed geometry, I still don't need more colors or fancy tricks, I don't need to fake texture, it's just stuff that the book can support. I also looked at reference here [ http://futureblue.files.wordpress.com/2010/03/books1.jpg ] which you should always do, no matter how cartoony what you're trying to draw is. You can spot many differences from 3 to 4 that are related to the reference.

5. After the shapes are good, identifiable and the object has volume, you can go nuts with your new school colors and tints and whatever else, it's all embellishment from here and on. 

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #23 on: October 28, 2011, 08:39:53 pm
-- (later) -->
I started from step 2 and tried to apply steps 3 and 4 with the geometry I try to achieve (rounded cover, with slight bumps at each edge, due to the seams -- see profile shape on the left). I may still have the second version try to fix some remaining errors with step 4. I also kept my original colour for the paper (I try to make the book look old, with yellow-ish paper), but if you switched to white-and-cyan for a purpose, I'd be curious to know.

As for step 5, I must admit that I don't get the process through which you picked those pink/cyan tints you have used ... But seen at 1x, you managed to have something much convincing for the shadow on the paper than what I ever got. If there's a rationale / tutorial about this, I'm curious as well.

meanwhile, I took a quite opposite approach to colour harmony by making a miniature of the scene and try to "zoom & refine" it progressively. So far, it brings this:
<-new test | for ref->

It's easier for me to experiment other tints ... although I still stay much more "conventional" compared to the color revamp you made.

edit: more book references
« Last Edit: November 18, 2011, 01:27:07 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #24 on: October 29, 2011, 09:46:43 am
Yeah the tints themselves in my edit don't matter much, just my kinks showing. Your latest book is much better in my opinion. Rounded edges is fine but you could use another color just to buffer the yellow highlight on the red main color, but don't overdo it, don't make it too noisy, just keep the shapes. Try to think of it like this, use the 4-5 main colors for the object's volumes, and then put in-between colors from the value jumps that are used in a secondary way. Of course there'll be places where you'll feel it natural later on to reuse of of your secondary colors as a primary volume color, but you'll get an intuitive feel for when and how to do this.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #25 on: October 29, 2011, 02:28:39 pm
@helm: okay, thank you for your guidelines. I'll "polish" the book tonight and give the "wooden block" a revamp asap.

edit: polished -- except the "paper" part which still need a bit more love. I might also need to revise the left corner a little bit: it looks like it's not following the shape suggested by those rounded lines on the cover >_<

« Last Edit: October 30, 2011, 01:39:16 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #26 on: October 31, 2011, 11:45:18 am
much, much better. Wouldn't surprise me to see this piece in any professional good looking mega drive game of the era. Approach all real-life related items you render in a similar way, avoid 'noisy textures' for their own sakes and you will level up in your craft.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #27 on: November 06, 2011, 08:59:38 am

The first try of a real-sized wood block that uses the colours defined with the "minitature level" experiment. Hope the volume is correct.
See top post for a full-size level mock-up. Now, let's proceed with anti-aliasing, refine the texture details and avoid boring pattern repetition...

note: background here is not definitive. That's merely a colour test with a simplified pattern.
Btw, it's a mix of techniques found in zool, coolspot and SMB3, if that matters. I tried to grasp and apply the best of each.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2011, 09:25:34 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #28 on: November 08, 2011, 07:48:43 am

2 foreground alternatives, 2 background alternatives. Is there any combination that looks the best in your eyes ?

Offline Sharm

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #29 on: November 08, 2011, 04:08:44 pm
#4 looks best to me.  The wood looks more like wood and the background doesn't look greyed out.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #30 on: November 17, 2011, 12:02:51 pm

Reverted to the old wood tiles, but updated the colors, since all the graphists who voted say wood #4 was best, and all player-to-be claimed they prefer something colourful.

Colors picked from real-world picture and then mapped to the closest NDS colour (5 bit/channel) if that's of any vaule for anybody. This version also shows updated colours for binder and a random part of the book, just for reference when building the mock-up.

Offline HughSpectrum

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #31 on: November 17, 2011, 12:23:01 pm
Use both the bright and dark variations of wood for added variety, IMO.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #32 on: November 17, 2011, 12:44:55 pm
Use both the bright and dark variations of wood for added variety, IMO.
That's a good idea. I'll find a way to do that.

Offline mattib

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #33 on: November 18, 2011, 11:30:24 am
Good idea to recreate a "bookshelf" stage! Don't know why, this kind of stages were a common trope in old school games. I liked them very much, expecially in Castle of Illusion



and World of Illusion (one of my favourite games ever)



I think that much of their charm was given by the warm and cozy feeling they had. As a kid I wanted them to last a lot because they were so relaxing. So I'd choice warm colors, a but little bit dark and desaturated.
« Last Edit: November 18, 2011, 12:02:15 pm by mattib »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #34 on: November 18, 2011, 12:17:03 pm
aha. I wasn't aware of a library level in the "Illusion" series... not that it's surprising from Disney. Thanks for the references. I must admit that wallpaper is an interesting alternative to wood for the background... and the carved wood also brings in variety against a plain wood texture. That gives more the feeling that the books belong to a cosy London Gentlemen Club than to a secondary school, but I'm sure I could find a way to make it fit the place ...

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #35 on: November 18, 2011, 12:27:29 pm
:D Yes, they have a more adult setting, but they are filled with school-stuff monsters and traps. You should play (or watch on youtube) those levels, 'cause they are really cool.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #36 on: November 18, 2011, 12:29:08 pm
Yeah, schools typically have light and plain walls, and often times windows too.  EDIT: And various posters and other hangings on the wall.

I would personally make the background a chalkboard to heavily emphasize the middle school theme while still having a dark background, which would allow you to have various writings and equations to break up empty space.  That is just me though, I may also recommend light, greyish plaster walls and "giant" (relative to your character) windows/posters/hangings.
« Last Edit: November 18, 2011, 12:31:28 pm by KittenMaster »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #37 on: November 18, 2011, 04:03:21 pm
I would personally make the background a chalkboard to heavily emphasize the middle school theme while still having a dark background, which would allow you to have various writings and equations to break up empty space.  That is just me though, I may also recommend light, greyish plaster walls and "giant" (relative to your character) windows/posters/hangings.
I have plans for a few levels in the school zone, at different places of the school. The giant classroom is one of them - and there will clearly be a giant chalkboard far in the background. Then, there will be the "ink temple" where Bilou learns that he's the long announced "hero" who must save the planet. But first, he must bring back Booklet to the Library and have a talk with Pr. Harraps. So says the scenario. At last, there is the escape from Pendats jail and epic fight against SqRt, the math book.
I want the library to be globally a dark and dusty place, hence placing the camera facing the wall (or the back of the furniture that holds the books ... but yeah, these could be just wall-mounted shelves, actually.

Quote
You should play (or watch on youtube) those levels, 'cause they are really cool.
I may have found a fair quality gameplay video on youtube. That will be for tonight. If you have the ability to do screenshots of the level yourself, I'm very interested by the glass flask just nexto the books in the CoI screenshot, as I lack a proper reference for pixelarting "inkjet" monsters. (unfortunately, it looks like there's only low-quality JPGs around on the Web)

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #38 on: November 18, 2011, 04:18:16 pm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uERYpV7ZaEQ&feature=related
at 00:26 you can see them.
But as you noted the graphics on the second chapter are better, that stage in World Of Illusion starts with the character popping out a little fishbowl (where the undewater stage ended, very cool transition) and I'm pretty sure there are other glass objects

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #39 on: April 28, 2012, 09:40:12 am


Experimenting with an alternate background, where the school become a huge city made of books.
(well, BG is still very sketchy, but if you've got comment about it so far, you're welcome anyway).

I plan to have more varied book covers in future updates  ... maybe something like this
« Last Edit: April 28, 2012, 12:07:46 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #40 on: May 11, 2012, 02:52:20 pm
vs .

There are interesting things, indeed. I also doubled the exposition of the "spikest" frame, as I think there might lack some pendulum in my original ink swamp. Of course, a doubled frame with some details animation while keeping the same shape would work better.

My brain seems to do some resistance and tries to convince me that the spiky one is best because those spikes better transmit the idea that falling in the ink means sudden death.

Sorry to bring this back up, but I really believe the version that isn't as spiky. The Spiky one immediately makes me think of a really light liquid. Ink is heavier and the smoother version really promotes that idea. Plus, the sudden death concept doesn't necessarily require you to make like a pitfall into a massive rotating fan. Sudden death can also be achieved from the opposite effect. Like the sludgy ink. That's just my opinion though.

Also, those red book are kinda awkward. Usually a book is more than twice as long/wide as it is tall.

I've always wanted to do something like this, it's really cool to see you doing a larger-life tileset :)

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #41 on: May 11, 2012, 05:18:31 pm
It seems that those are at least 2 different books, but it's kinda hard to separate them (if they should have different sizes, change the color/details of each book)

I they are the same, make a perspectivical projection to get the proportions right (slym pointed already out that they look awkward).
I choosed your first book, drew the ground view and constructed the other views - really simple to understand by just looking at the picture


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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #42 on: May 14, 2012, 07:07:15 am
Sorry to bring this back up, but I really believe the version that isn't as spiky. The Spiky one immediately makes me think of a really light liquid. Ink is heavier and the smoother version really promotes that idea. Plus, the sudden death concept doesn't necessarily require you to make like a pitfall into a massive rotating fan. Sudden death can also be achieved from the opposite effect. Like the sludgy ink. That's just my opinion though.
That makes sense. Thanks for the convincing argument :)

Quote from: Cyangmou

It seems that those are at least 2 different books, but it's kinda hard to separate them

Yep, I have to admit that I made up this book stack so that they occupy the desired space on the picture. Obviously, it's not such a good idea.

Quote
(if they should have different sizes, change the color/details of each book)
Yeah, good point. I think I'll also have to come up with something with a more square-ish shape for certain platforms (or ban that from that level altogether). Your TOP/FRONT visualisation convey well what I'm trying to do and produce more convincing objects. Thanks for the tip.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #43 on: May 16, 2012, 04:33:22 pm
Yeah, good point. I think I'll also have to come up with something with a more square-ish shape for certain platforms (or ban that from that level altogether). Your TOP/FRONT visualisation convey well what I'm trying to do and produce more convincing objects. Thanks for the tip.

Well, just go with that general idea, then, but also move the books out of the level/screen on the left side. That way, you can have them occupy the space you want them to but also look "right" at the same time.
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Re: [wip] Bilou in Deep ink pit

Reply #44 on: May 17, 2012, 09:00:19 am
Well, just go with that general idea, then, but also move the books out of the level/screen on the left side. That way, you can have them occupy the space you want them to but also look "right" at the same time.

#true.

Any comment on the new background so far?

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #45 on: May 17, 2012, 05:32:13 pm
Having platforms (the books) that appear to recede in space does raise the question of exactly what plane the character is on; which edge of the book?



I really like the book fort architecture of the background :y:, but having the books unilaterally larger (and significantly so) than those of the foreground invites a sense of dislocation of scale. I think the previous, plainer backgrounds felt more appropriately intimate and 'zoomed in'. Personally I'd apply that (very nice) idea to the foreground platforms (the current foundation of woodblocks seem a bit uninspired and not particulary evocative of a classroom). BG books could look good as well but I'd keep them at the same scale or smaller.

« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 10:44:46 pm by Facet »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #46 on: May 17, 2012, 06:40:06 pm
thanks for your comments, Facet.

Having platforms (the books) that appear to recede in space does raise the question of exactly what plane the character is on; which edge of the book?



The idea is to mix both interpretation in a way that will not trick the player: you can walk all over the book top, and the blue line can be jumped through. only the "front side" of the book is really solid (and thus cannot be walked or jumped through). This allows me to use stacks of books either as ladders, walls or more subtle hidden tunnels to secret rooms

Quote
I really like the book fort architecture of the background :y:, but having the books unilaterally larger (and significantly so) than those of the foreground invites a sense of dislocation of scale. I think the previous, plainer backgrounds felt more appropriately intimate and 'zoomed in'. Personally I'd apply that (very nice) idea to the foreground platforms (the current foundation of woodblocks seem uninspired and not particulary evocative of a classroom). BG books could look good as well but I'd keep them at the same scale or smaller.

That's noted, and meets comments I got from non-artist friends. "intimate" is the word. I do love that on the plain background, too, although I can't help thinking it's not ambitious enough. I suppose I just need to walk my way through it and find more ways to make this wooden BG interesting and sufficiently diverse.
And I'll definitely go for more type of books and less wooden blocks in the foreground ... just enough to lay out "shelves" on which the books stand (the current level is more the school's library than a giant classroom, btw).

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #47 on: May 18, 2012, 04:23:38 pm
What about a view of the school room as if you're looking out from the bookshelf?

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #48 on: May 18, 2012, 06:22:05 pm
What about a view of the school room as if you're looking out from the bookshelf?
I did a couple of tries in that direction, but it didn't worked the way I expected ...

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #49 on: May 18, 2012, 08:50:28 pm
Quote
you can walk all over the book top, and the blue line can be jumped through

Ok, That's a nice idea, I'm a sucker for secret passages too :).

Woodblocks to shelves makes a lot of sense. For more interest with a close-up bg I like Hugh's previous blackboard suggestion; it's pretty flexible (you could use primitive chalk drawings as the scenery or little in-jokes or whatever)  and I reckon you could get a nice chalk effect with a little tlc. I updated the example in my previous post.

Going for a full classroom in perspective might end up quite busy but if that's the way you want to go why not post up your attempts?


« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 10:42:59 pm by Facet »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #50 on: May 19, 2012, 07:41:40 am
Woodblocks to shelves makes a lot of sense.
I like how you brought volume to that. I'll try to mime it.

Quote
For more interest with a close-up bg I like Hugh's previous blackboard suggestion; it's pretty flexible (you could use primitive chalk drawings as the scenery or little in-jokes or whatever)  and I reckon you could get a nice chalk effect with a little tlc. I updated the example in my previous post.
Yeah, that gives good. I think mixing chalkboard and more conventional wood could provide the type of background I'm after.


Quote
Going for a full classroom in perspective might end up quite busy but if that's the way you want to go why not post up your attempts?
These are a bit scattered and weren't all digitized nor present on this laptop. I'll look after and post them. There will definitely be some level with open space, but then that will be more mario-like levels, horizontally designed and with fewer "climbing/exploring" aspects. Backgrounds on this comic page can give you an overview of one possible approach.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #51 on: May 19, 2012, 09:53:02 am
one of those attempts, mere scan of the lineart. and what it gives when trying to convert it into the colour set that would fit a background (still no pixel art at this level).

 

(ps: sorry: haven't got time to implement all the nice ideas you guys proposed. Not yet. baby sitting in-between)
« Last Edit: May 19, 2012, 11:14:04 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #52 on: May 31, 2012, 10:55:48 am
Hi again. I'm not yet convinced by my "inkpot" monster. I tried an alternate approach which seems interesting, but not yet satisfying either:



Looks like some life drawing is getting impossible to avoid ...

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #53 on: May 31, 2012, 07:10:06 pm
Yeah, sprite AA to an uncertain BG is a strange choice, particularly considering the absence of much AA elsewhere. Perhaps try something simpler, without interior transparency. Animating the ink sloshing about has the potential to be pretty fun ;D.



The classroom BG lineart is rather charming, If you keep a small colour range and minimal rendering in the final I think that'd look great. For some reason I had it in my head that you wanted to do a full projection the length of a classroom with rows of desks but this a nice solution. On the subject; I was reading a blog post the other day relating pictorial depth and comedic cues that resonated with me, perhaps you'll find it interesting.

Cute Comic :)
« Last Edit: May 31, 2012, 07:23:10 pm by Facet »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #54 on: June 01, 2012, 11:03:39 am
Quote
I was reading a blog post the other day relating pictorial depth and comedic cues that resonated with me, perhaps you'll find it interesting.
Interesting. That' suggests I should keep the "books church" background as scenery for boss fights...

Yeah, sprite AA to an uncertain BG is a strange choice, particularly considering the absence of much AA elsewhere. Perhaps try something simpler, without interior transparency. Animating the ink sloshing about has the potential to be pretty fun ;D.


Gotta try that ^_^
And yeah, inkjet will have its ink wobbling inside before spitting droplets ... I hope people will enjoy the animation.

Quote
For some reason I had it in my head that you wanted to do a full projection the length of a classroom with rows of desks but this a nice solution.
That was the idea ~10 years ago, but since then, I realised that it wasn't necessary to have a school-typical arrangement. Instead, furnitures are like mountains and hills, small supplies are the inhabittants and their fossilised ancestors are used as construction blocks ... after all, isn't the "living" knowledge built on layers of past knowledge ;)

Quote
Cute Comic :)
Thanks.

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #55 on: June 02, 2012, 05:54:15 am
= (waiting for boards to resume their pixel-friendly background)

any better ? Looks like the white outline definitely doesn't work, imho.
I'd have been for the middle one, but according to my fairy, obscuring too much the ink with speculars give the feeling that it's now "a monster in a bottle" and no more a "bottle-monster"

@facet: I spot two regions of "lighter ink", somehow peanut-shaped at left and right of your re-interpretation, but I fail to understand the reason you did that. What was the rationale ?

PS: droplets on the right are not yet "reassembled", please ignore them for the moment.
« Last Edit: June 02, 2012, 07:54:51 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou in school zone [c+c]

Reply #56 on: June 02, 2012, 12:28:34 pm

new evolution: "lineart" gone. I think this one is ready for animation ... Do you feel the same ?

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school + dumblador + inkjet [c+c]

Reply #57 on: June 02, 2012, 06:25:39 pm
Looks great to me, those speculars really pop ;D. The peanuts in my edit were supposed to be reflections on the glass for a little more volume, I really should have made them somewhat lighter/more saturated but I just took the palette straight from your original.

Black eyebrows might get confused easily with the ink but they do look really nice.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school + dumblador + inkjet [c+c]

Reply #58 on: June 03, 2012, 01:16:18 am
I know that this isn't really helpful, but this is the only thread I've been following for the past few weeks. I am way too jealous of the creativity of this project :)

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school + dumblador + inkjet [c+c]

Reply #59 on: June 03, 2012, 07:33:27 am
Quote
this is the only thread I've been following for the past few weeks. I am way too jealous of the creativity of this project
Thank you, slym. That's warm to my heart.

Many of those funny characters come from an old brainstorm with friends, but I indeed value creativity above many other aspects of video game creation. I'm doing my best to keep coming with original ideas for the remaining 5 "zones" of the complete adventure.

Watching some deviant artists has now become part of my "daily routine", and whenever I find something appealing, I try to "twist" it into my little world. Sometimes, it stays dormant for monthes before it turns into "a Bilou idea" :P
« Last Edit: June 03, 2012, 08:09:47 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school + dumblador + inkjet [c+c]

Reply #60 on: July 04, 2012, 10:44:41 am
Hey there. Just wanted to let you know that the project is still moving forwards, although not really on the "pixel" axis, but mostly along the 'animation' axis.


That's what my shiny 'AnimEDS' editor allowed me to do.  I still have many details to fix, and unfortunately, the "video capture" mess up the colors, but I hope you'll enjoy the refreshed animations compared to the old, 16x16-constraints little moves I had before.
Oh, and yeah, there's a bug mid-air that prevents smooth animation. I still have to fix the game engine to adjust that.

PS: dumblador is deliberately stepping the same foot ahead again and again, as if its left foot would hurt if it pushed it forward. (Or maybe it's so dumb that he applied "step one foot ahead, repeat" a little too litterally. I haven't decided yet :) )

I hope to be back later this summer with a more complete art set, or some ink droplet animation.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school + dumblador + inkjet [c+c]

Reply #61 on: July 05, 2012, 11:32:54 am
Those animations are charming and the entire style gives off a classy, sega genesis vibe for me. In a great way. Looking forward to more!

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school + dumblador + inkjet [c+c]

Reply #62 on: July 06, 2012, 12:38:14 pm

old -> new

I always missed the body of Bilou, but the rayman-like animations are polishing him up very much. What about making the jumps more dynamic?

And the walking bottles (?) could walk a bit faster. They look too lazy.

edit: oh, these are pencil sharpeners? Then there should be walking pencils, too!
« Last Edit: July 06, 2012, 12:52:54 pm by Lazycow »
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Re: [wip] Bilou's school + dumblador + inkjet [c+c]

Reply #63 on: July 06, 2012, 01:11:50 pm

old -> new

I always missed the body of Bilou, but the rayman-like animations are polishing him up very much. What about making the jumps more dynamic?
I like that a lot. I'll work on something similar. Thanks ^_^

Quote
And the walking bottles (?) could walk a bit faster. They look too lazy.
They mostly serve the purpose of being thrown at stronger ennemies in my level design, but they could definitely use a slight speed-up, I agree. A few more bugfixes and I'll get into it.
Quote
edit: oh, these are pencil sharpeners? Then there should be walking pencils, too!
Yes, they are, and yes, there will definitely be some walking pencils too: the pendatz. I haven't presented them yet because I initially planned to use 3D hardware of the DS for their "body", but I'm no longer so sure it would be a benefit against some more traditional pixel art. I'll sketch up a pixel art prototype over the week-end :)

edit: just keeping reference of some Henk Nieborg pixels that was laying on my HDD which could be useful for background design:
« Last Edit: July 16, 2012, 01:36:35 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school + dumblador + inkjet [c+c]

Reply #64 on: August 26, 2012, 09:27:07 pm
concept "art" on deviantart

Coding took me longer than expected, and so did the work on new animation. Meanwhile, I've tried to find things to fill the background of the library level while keeping a "intimate" tone. I think I've got at last some ideas, thanks my little daughter watching Snow White and Pinoccio movies :)

I hope I'll have the required level to convert that into pixels...
« Last Edit: August 28, 2012, 12:36:42 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school + dumblador + inkjet [c+c]

Reply #65 on: August 28, 2012, 12:13:48 pm


A first attempt to convert last weekend's sketch into pixels. I can't call it "art" yet ... i've got a long way to run to come with cleaner lines, better contrasts and stuff. Hints welcome.

The new elements (mustache-like pattern and owl) should look like crafted wood and sit behind the playground (red books, square-ish wood blocks.
Same goes for the purple book.

(hm, please ignore non-sense tiles at the top of the book pile on the leftmost corner: it looks like my map converter tool isn't aware of tile swapping yet :P )

@Facet: I'm busy with an upgrade of my sprite/tile editor that would allow me to "tint" books at will and go further with the kind of "book mess" you suggested.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2012, 02:57:23 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #66 on: August 28, 2012, 08:39:59 pm
one more iteration ... hope it improves the owl.
N.B. in final version, the "purple" book would not hide behind the owl: it would be on a layer between owl and playground.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2012, 06:08:20 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #67 on: August 29, 2012, 01:37:54 am
Looks awesome sir, Keep it up and stay going strong on this project, your work is the one that inspired me to do pixel art. ^.^

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #68 on: August 31, 2012, 01:17:24 pm
Looks awesome sir, Keep it up and stay going strong on this project, your work is the one that inspired me to do pixel art. ^.^
Thanks for the motivation. I'm almost ready for a first demo release, so I'm freezing all art until that point. I'll do a second run on the art after that. I still hope to get more comments on how to tame large pieces like the owl meanwhile.

Let me also recap' a todo list from former anwers:
- pixel the pendats (lazycow)
- landing animation (lazycow)
- animate inkjet (facet)
- turn wooden blocks into proper shelves (facet) and add 'storage names' carved in the wood (me)
- a chalkboard for closed-space areas (Hugh)
- more colour, sizes and orientation (and design) for books
- tiles to allow stretching of laying books at will (cyangmou)
- give non-spiky ink a try (slym)

(erhm. That's a whole lot of things to do. I think that will keep me busy for a while :P )

Thanks to everyone who helped even though I haven't got the time to convert most of your comments into pixels ... yet.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #69 on: August 31, 2012, 10:29:31 pm
Grats on the approaching milestone, looking forward to giving it a go :y:. I almost don't want give you any more to think about/do but I know ya gotta work where inspiration strikes sometimes ;). I'd think about going more chunky/planar for the wood carvings, also symmetry; symmetry is great for finding elegant, appealing designs even if you want a directional lightsource or detailing in the end.

I thought the BG whorl pattern was a bit busy/repetitive, perhaps some occasional stand-alones might be nicer, mine actually turned out way heavy-handed and a bit weird, but the idea is there anyway.

« Last Edit: August 31, 2012, 10:43:57 pm by Facet »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #70 on: September 01, 2012, 01:39:18 pm
have fun -- release notes

(now I gonna take care of those laundry issues :P)

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #71 on: September 01, 2012, 06:29:42 pm
Thanks a lot for the carving edit, Facet. That was exactly the kind of counter-point I was needing to keep progressing ...
I'd think about going more chunky/planar for the wood carvings,
I like how you used the mid-tone for a second level of shadow *outside* of the carving.

Quote
also symmetry; symmetry is great for finding elegant, appealing designs even if you want a directional lightsource or detailing in the end.
Yus! I should have figured this out on my own. Plus, the mirror-capable hardware is gonna love it. I just need to find something that is not a flower ...

Quote
I thought the BG whorl pattern was a bit busy/repetitive, perhaps some occasional stand-alones might be nicer, mine actually turned out way heavy-handed and a bit weird, but the idea is there anyway.
There is indeed a balance to find here. I'll explore that path. And yeah, yours are indeed a bit creepy ...
They'd be wonderful in a haunted mansion ^_^

Will come back shortly with a revised version.
edit ... hmmm ... I started by re-defining the silouhetto and main lines in gimp over the current background layer and I got a nice surprise:

Symmetry chops the own thing into a nice 64-pixel wide vertical slice, which is just what SEDS can handle natively: I'll be able to work on the revised owl with my favourite stylus ^_^ ... erhm. .. and I just messed up width and heights :P maybe It's time I get some sleep ^^"
« Last Edit: September 01, 2012, 07:38:52 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #72 on: September 11, 2012, 05:00:19 am

meanwhile, I'm upgrading my tools to support the multi-palette feature of SEDS. So here's an alternate tint for the books. I hope I did the hue shift properly.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #73 on: September 28, 2012, 07:15:31 am
at last, the final (?) touch on books. I'm afraid I'll need a second book cover tile for some of the angles, unfortunately (@ black question mark).

I'd have loved to post an update on the owl too, but that will have to wait for the week-end, I'm afraid.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #74 on: September 28, 2012, 03:32:18 pm
at last, the final (?) touch on books. I'm afraid I'll need a second book cover tile for some of the angles, unfortunately (@ black question mark).

I'd have loved to post an update on the owl too, but that will have to wait for the week-end, I'm afraid.

Nice improvement! I think it has now much better perspective than before and Owl looks awesome too. Offtopic but I really really love your apple bat.. Imo it is best bat desing ever.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2012, 03:33:55 pm by Beetleking22 »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #75 on: September 29, 2012, 12:34:25 pm
My editor has failed me again, unfortunately, so I can't show "pixel" art yet, but here come two reconstructed owls from a picture of my screen as it crashed trying to save my work. The good thing is, by re-starting again and again, I'm becoming more comfortable with this :P



(The DSi screen has strong "column" artefact, which doesn't help recovering pixels from the picture >_<)

Quote
Offtopic but I really really love your apple bat.. Imo it is best bat desing ever.
Thank you. I'm a bit unsure whether you mean the applebat or the berrybat, but I'm glad you appreciate it. I had need for something more separated from regular applemen at the end, so I dropped applebat in favour of berrybats ...

(alternate carved owl reference)
« Last Edit: September 29, 2012, 05:14:13 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #76 on: October 03, 2012, 05:46:33 pm
Ah, shame about the lost progress. The feet are really large in that off-screen shot, actually my attention thus drawn I think owls have an opposable front toe (perching owls) so they mostly perch two toes forward, two back like parrots; whether that really matters though...  :crazy:

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #77 on: October 05, 2012, 11:29:10 am
Ah, shame about the lost progress. The feet are really large in that off-screen shot,
yep, I noticed that when posting, too. I prefer the proportions of yours, so I updated my working copy. I'll try to post the "up-scaled" 128x160 sized owl this week-end.

Quote
actually my attention thus drawn I think owls have an opposable front toe (perching owls) so they mostly perch two toes forward, two back like parrots; whether that really matters though...  :crazy:
You pay attention to details, don't you ?

Well, I've flickered a little bit myself, too, and it doesn't look to be a "family" thing (like mammals having 4 legs) but more a "species" thing, with some flavour of owls using indeed 2+2 and others (as far as I can tell from pictures) using 3+1. I deliberately ommit a lot of owls from my investigation because in french, we have different names for "ear-wearing" owls (Hiboux) and ear-less owls (chouettes), with only the former conveying an intuitive image of wisdom and teacher-role.

So, I'll stick to my 3-toes-forward character. I won't really matter in a school where books learn to write and hard-lead pencils go on night-watch, indeed :P

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #78 on: October 07, 2012, 08:25:17 pm
The "pictured" image was almost impossible to recover. I just used it as a base and re-painted over it.

-> - vs -
I cannot call it done ... Looking at it in its full size makes me realize that it lacks volume in multiple places, and that the belly highlight isn't working as expected ... nor are the wings "large feathers" .. it almost reminds of some tire manufacturer's mascot :P

(colors are not definitive at all).

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #79 on: October 09, 2012, 10:16:17 pm
Looking pretty swag, latest version is much more characterful and coherent with your world aesthetic than your first couple drafts or my example. Noice :y:.

I did chuckle at the intimation of 'tyre wings', I was thinking croissant :P I reckon the sort of fine-grained feathery texture you've gone for there is a little at odds with the much bolder macro-styling/chunky carved look, and perhaps the addition a bit of a feathered 'bib' as modelled by that eagle-owl might look good. Something along these lines (but probably more subtle):



You pay attention to details, don't you ?

Well, I've flickered a little bit myself, too, and it doesn't look to be a "family" thing (like mammals having 4 legs) but more a "species" thing, with some flavour of owls using indeed 2+2 and others (as far as I can tell from pictures) using 3+1. I deliberately ommit a lot of owls from my investigation because in french, we have different names for "ear-wearing" owls (Hiboux) and ear-less owls (chouettes), with only the former conveying an intuitive image of wisdom and teacher-role.
Ha, I've just been drawing a bunch of owls myself fairly recently. Love 'em. The attribution of learnedness based on hairstyle is rather interesting, not to sidetrack too much but regarding toe configuration I remember reading it's a case of volition with owls in general rather than congenital arrangement. Found a footnote here.
Quote
So, I'll stick to my 3-toes-forward character. I won't really matter in a school where books learn to write and hard-lead pencils go on night-watch, indeed :P
Quite. ;D
« Last Edit: October 10, 2012, 07:36:30 pm by Facet »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #80 on: October 12, 2012, 10:01:28 am
Thanks for the edit. The feather bib is indeed a great thing and will fit that "empty space" I've got just below the head.
I love how you de-flatened the belly area with some larger shadow space. I'm gonna try to mimmic that.



- vs - - vs -
Update. I still have to figure out how to avoid the belly to look square-ish and to fix up a few things near the eyes. Thanks for the help so far :)

Merged - Crow
« Last Edit: October 16, 2012, 08:55:06 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #81 on: October 14, 2012, 01:46:13 pm
I have to say i agree with Cyangmou about the angles of the books, thats been bugging me for a while.
I also think Facet's edit looks great...

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #82 on: October 14, 2012, 06:57:02 pm
I have to say i agree with Cyangmou about the angles of the books, thats been bugging me for a while.
I also think Facet's edit looks great...
You mean and , I guess ?

I think I've adressed the first one, already, and I'm on my way to provide the second one, now that I can have multiple colours for my books.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #83 on: October 24, 2012, 12:25:59 pm

update on owl and first attempt to make a "real" item for the "banner" ahead of the owl's head.
I tried to track blob-like patterns on owl's head and replace them with well-defined shapes (although they're more geometric).

Hope you like it. If noone sees blatant mistakes on that one, I think I'll now work on merging owl's top and the banner into a single entity, and then what the owl is perching on .. then call it done.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #84 on: October 24, 2012, 07:45:13 pm
I love the latest iteration of the owl. Seriously, so much improvement. I know you have some ways to go yet as it looks like you focused mostly on the head so far, but that chunkiness is a move in the right direction. I really likes the way Facet did the feet in a previous edit, very sharp angles and good use of light. Maybe try something similar.

My only advice would be to use angles more often. With a low colour pallet like the one you're using it will help to emphasise shapes as well as keep it looking cleaner/less jagged due to not needing AA. Anyway, I made an edit that while probably not fitting, might give you ideas.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #85 on: October 24, 2012, 08:18:47 pm
I like it, the banner (architrave?) too ;D

It does look quite high sat./contrast for the bg though: the original colours (way back in post #71) I thought were nice. Also noticed that he's a quite a bit bigger these last couple iterations; a good portion of the DS screen, quite a feature.

Somehow I think the addition of pupils lends quite a severe look (from part of the background to a malevolent observer :P) I suppose that's another traditional symbol of the bird, but I don't know if that's intended/desirable here?
« Last Edit: November 08, 2012, 11:28:37 pm by Facet »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #86 on: October 24, 2012, 08:36:50 pm
Thanks both.

Quote
It does look quite high sat./contrast for the bg though
My intent is to move him back to the bg colours you used in your first edit. Such colours, however, are a nightmare to use for edition on the DS, so I use an intermediate -- fg-like -- palette while it is in progress.

Quote
I think the addition of pupils lends quite a severe look
I agree. That was not necessarily thought ahead, but it's a good thing to have an intimidating look for something that represents teaching in the "old school" zone. I'm trying that the pupils look to the bottom, as if that glance was focused on Bilou, and not on the player. He should not be really "malevolent", though.

@Jim16: thanks for your edit. I like the volume you brought to the eyes. The shapes you used are a bit too extreme for the desired look of the owl, but I'll definitely come back to that edit when I'll come to the mayan labyrinth zone. If time allows, I'd love to try an edit of the wings along those lines.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #87 on: October 30, 2012, 01:31:12 pm

A first attempt to render a standing book ... not very convincing, imho. It's all blobby, and not coherent with the rest in terms of perspective  :-[

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #88 on: November 01, 2012, 08:54:59 pm

I prefer this version, based on the binders.
edit: and finally, the owl background in-game.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2012, 04:10:05 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #89 on: November 01, 2012, 11:50:08 pm

I prefer this version, based on the binders.

Much much better make the red book with the same style.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #90 on: November 05, 2012, 08:23:35 am
Much much better make the red book with the same style.
I hesitate to do so. Could you please indicate the features that you prefer ? I'd like to keep the rounded shape of the laying books, but I'm not opposed to improve them if that can be done.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #91 on: November 06, 2012, 02:58:09 am
To me, the best feature of the new design is the depth created by the implication of overlapping areas.
New AA tutorial, about handling irregular lines.

'Better software looks like "people who know what their problem is and why they have it"'

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #92 on: November 08, 2012, 11:07:09 pm
Not sure why the upright spines are double width but I think staying with 32px would look better at first. Maybe turning the parallel lines of the reds into proper 'ribs' like the green 'uns would make a nice compromise.



I was having trouble at first trying to sketch with your palette, and I think it's primarily because you've a huge hue-shift but little difference in saturation. I toned down the cooler colours and added a nice desaturated mid-tone to effect as a bounce light; the strong highlights seem to indicate a reflective surface so I ran with it, also spaced the values out a bit.

The new mockup looks great but I do miss the sense of architecture of the previous, ie, bg appearing as part of the structure of the fg. Probably this is just a result of a quick asset test but I'd like to see the owl perched on something of the foreground and the architrave appear to support a platform.
« Last Edit: November 08, 2012, 11:11:12 pm by Facet »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #93 on: November 09, 2012, 07:58:52 am
Cool edit.
I agree with the desaturation of cooler colours - especially when it comes to ambient sky lighting which seems to be much more realistic with a very desaturated blue, although it may be almost grey it still appears blue in comparison with the more saturated colours (recently discovered this myself).

IMO, this kind of selective saturation could be applied to some of the other objects so as not to interfere with the sprites themselves.
And where the light hits, ramp up the saturation too as this can help mark the edges of platforms.
Its a good idea to look for any tricks like this that can help mark out the playable/nonplayable areas, even out of the corner of your eye.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #94 on: November 09, 2012, 10:44:25 am
This kind of perspective is quite hard to work with. In order to simulate depth, you could use contrast to make the perspective more obvious without compromising too much your style.
I tried to work on the books bindings, most of the time they consist on leaflets (not sure about the term here) knitted to a fabric tissue band, allowing the book to bend when opening it. Furthermore since they are old/used book you could have dents in the silhouette thanks to those "leaflets", instead of the clean curves.
The cover could be thicker considering the size of the volume.

« Last Edit: March 15, 2013, 01:10:36 pm by Crow »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #95 on: November 09, 2012, 02:33:29 pm
Not sure why the upright spines are double width ...
hum ... because it worked  :P (compared to my earlier, unpublished attempts)
the reversed U you used for shadows is a nice way to convey cylindrical volume while keeping a straight shape.

Quote
I was having trouble at first trying to sketch with your palette, and I think it's primarily because you've a huge hue-shift but little difference in saturation. I toned down the cooler colours and added a nice desaturated mid-tone to effect as a bounce light; the strong highlights seem to indicate a reflective surface so I ran with it, also spaced the values out a bit.
Thanks for the tip. I'll see to what extend the Nintendo DS tolerates that (there are pretty few colours available when de-saturating things as result of the low # of bit per channel) without introducing rainbow artefacts.

Quote
The new mockup looks great but I do miss the sense of architecture of the previous, ie, bg appearing as part of the structure of the fg. Probably this is just a result of a quick asset test but I'd like to see the owl perched on something of the foreground and the architrave appear to support a platform.
It's indeed mostly a test, and an in-emulator screenshot rather than a mockup, but there will be a parallax scrolling between BG and FG, meaning that the illusion of "supporting something" may be working differently in different places. I should be able to tweak the alignment of the planes to produce interesting architecture effect, though. I'll try to do that better in the next run.

Quote from: moket
In order to simulate depth, you could use contrast to make the perspective more obvious without compromising too much your style.
A good tip. I have to figure out how to apply it with this tiled hardware in a smart way, but I'll definitely give it a try.

Quote
you could have dents in the silhouette thanks to those "leaflets", instead of the clean curves; The cover could be thicker considering the size of the volume.
point taken.That seems to vary from books to books, though.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2012, 02:33:53 pm by PypeBros »

Offline Facet

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #96 on: November 10, 2012, 01:33:55 am
Ah yeah! sweet combo edit Mocket.

I meant to say earlier, with the tilemap you had those ribs do work against the hard-won foreshortening effect; I don't think it's all that noticeable, but differently compressed variations wouldn't be so hard to do along with the kind of tonal tile variants of Mocket's; just so long as you have the space :).

Quote
The illusion of "supporting something" may be working differently in different places. I should be able to tweak the alignment of the planes to produce interesting architecture effect, though.
Ah, I did think afterwards you might be doing offset scrolling, what jumped out at me most was the carving being behind (partially submerged in?) the ink.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #97 on: November 10, 2012, 10:43:05 am
Quote
I meant to say earlier, with the tilemap you had those ribs do work against the hard-won foreshortening effect; I don't think it's all that noticeable, but differently compressed variations wouldn't be so hard to do along with the kind of tonal tile variants of Mocket's; just so long as you have the space

I hadnt actually noticed that as a problem before, but now that you mention it I see it.  I did a quick edit to try it out just cause I wanted to see how it would look

I do think it helps, even though it is a very minor thing.

I think Mockets edit is a step in the right direction too.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #98 on: November 15, 2012, 09:32:54 pm
There's one thing that keeps puzzling me with the proposed edits.


The ring-like structures have been given shadows on the right, suggesting that the light is coming from a large enough angle so that it highlights the rings, but still cast shadow. Imho, that's incompatible with the highlight on the edge of the book (blue-ified in the image above)



Well, anyway, I keep you updated as soon as I managed to make something convincing with your proposals. Thanks a lot.
« Last Edit: November 27, 2012, 08:57:09 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #99 on: November 15, 2012, 09:48:54 pm
Quote
Not sure why the upright spines are double width ...
I'm not 100% sure because you're using the English language at a level I've not mastered yet, but i suppose you mean the "stairs" effect of books cover, near the left and right extremes of the 32 px tile, aren't you ? If that's so, I'm trying to render the effect that the "dent" just between the spine cover and the front/rear covers. (see side view below or this picture)

I obviously overdid it and it should be smaller in comparison the rest of the book.
« Last Edit: November 21, 2012, 09:39:58 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #100 on: November 24, 2012, 11:43:39 am
=> -&- =>

A slight update. I did experiments to follow suggestions of the "ribs" on laying books or round up the spine of standing book, but that did not resulted in anything convincing. My best move will thus be to keep them as 2 different generation of books, one having leather-like cover that let them have rounded spine, and the others being made of stronger material that make their spine be flat and rib-reinforced.

As suggested, I made the spine of standing book larger and added complementary tiles to offer shadow effects on the book stack.

I'd like to draw more inspiration from moket's edit ... for background objects, maybe.

PS: please ignore the cyan things at random positions: there's a gameplay experiment in progress.
PPS: oops. It looks like I still have tiling errors in those standing books. I'll post a fixed mockup asap. fixed.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2012, 09:00:46 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #101 on: November 26, 2012, 07:21:49 pm
I  thought that your book is going to look even more better if you make more detail! Here is my edit.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #102 on: November 30, 2012, 12:14:01 pm
@beetleking22: I like that. I'll do my best to improve the spines along these lines without introducing back the kind of noise I initially had.

<--old -#- new -->

Meanwhile, I think I pin-point'd some shadow/lightning issues with the books. I'm not yet fully done, but that looks like a step in the right direction to me. Does it to you too ?

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #103 on: December 05, 2012, 03:36:42 pm
@beetleking22: I like that. I'll do my best to improve the spines along these lines without introducing back the kind of noise I initially had.

<--old -#- new -->

Meanwhile, I think I pin-point'd some shadow/lightning issues with the books. I'm not yet fully done, but that looks like a step in the right direction to me. Does it to you too ?

Yeah that is better but make more rounded shadow and the book paper end angle is too triagled.. i think its should be more rounded.. Also I made for you some kind of paper texture...forgive my bad english..

Edit.

« Last Edit: December 05, 2012, 03:38:30 pm by Beetleking22 »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #104 on: December 05, 2012, 04:25:34 pm
thanks for the tip, Beetleking.
It also looks like I should stick to 1 colour for the shadow (and pick one that will unambiguously read as a shadow), and possibly allow some colours to be used as AA.

When comparing my curent books to your edit, the attempt to have "progressive" shadowing simply doesn't work.

Btw, I think I will drop the "diagonal shadows" too, and just have 2 levels of shading, with book-like shape as transition. Hopefully, that should allow me to use the additional tiles to build better textures for the paper and book spines (I'm over-repeating some 8-pixels tile, atm).

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #105 on: December 05, 2012, 08:58:04 pm
thanks for the tip, Beetleking.
It also looks like I should stick to 1 colour for the shadow (and pick one that will unambiguously read as a shadow), and possibly allow some colours to be used as AA.

When comparing my curent books to your edit, the attempt to have "progressive" shadowing simply doesn't work.

Btw, I think I will drop the "diagonal shadows" too, and just have 2 levels of shading, with book-like shape as transition. Hopefully, that should allow me to use the additional tiles to build better textures for the paper and book spines (I'm over-repeating some 8-pixels tile, atm).

Yeah agree you should use few color for shadow because your 4 colors shadow does not have much difference because they are almost the same color.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #106 on: December 31, 2012, 02:39:01 pm
Huge thanks to all those who have helped with the graphics, and best wishes for the new year to everybody. I don't think the visuals have strongly changed since the last screenshots/mockups, but now you've got an updated playable demo if you've got compatible hardware.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #107 on: February 09, 2013, 09:27:31 pm

the inkjet throwing out some ink (well, the ink droplets aren't rendered yet).
it's not yet satisfying and still very static, unfortunately  :-[

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : inkjet [c+c]

Reply #108 on: March 03, 2013, 02:27:23 pm


Better movement, but eyes can still be improved.
What's your impression about it ?
« Last Edit: March 03, 2013, 10:41:25 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #109 on: March 03, 2013, 02:28:44 pm
It doesn't jump a whole lot, but the actual movement/stretch is very "big". Doesn't seem right.
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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #110 on: March 04, 2013, 09:38:37 am
It doesn't jump a whole lot, but the actual movement/stretch is very "big". Doesn't seem right.
I'm trying to animate something like this, not really a "bop". But I guess you got it, so I'm gonna take my editor and try to come up with something better.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #111 on: March 07, 2013, 09:05:49 pm
Does this look better ? I think I prefer it with no vertical movement, after all ...

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #112 on: March 07, 2013, 10:14:55 pm
I tried to animate a version of the inkbottle too. This is more typical animation, and Im not sure if you want it to be like that, but I think the anticipation helps make the attack look stronger?
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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : owlish background [c+c]

Reply #113 on: March 08, 2013, 08:33:35 am
I love how you have some "pressure" upwards already at frame #3 where the "mouth" is producing an anti-motion. I'll find some place in my spritesheet for something along these lines. Thanks a lot.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #114 on: March 08, 2013, 09:33:57 pm
-- updated. Not as dynamic as yours, ymedron, but I have to fit a 32x32 box for the inkjet's "body".

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #115 on: March 08, 2013, 11:59:27 pm
Maybe instead of having it do what it is doing now, you could have it suck its body inwards and use pressure to shoot a drop upwards.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #116 on: March 09, 2013, 08:03:21 am
Maybe instead of having it do what it is doing now, you could have it suck its body inwards and use pressure to shoot a drop upwards.
Err ... my mind fail to translate that into pictures. Sorry.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #117 on: March 09, 2013, 12:17:01 pm
Hmm, I think the issue with your animation is that the anticipation is too quick. You could make the down-anticipation like two or three frames of it preparing to shoot the inkblot?
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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #118 on: March 09, 2013, 03:56:11 pm
Hmm, I think the issue with your animation is that the anticipation is too quick. You could make the down-anticipation like two or three frames of it preparing to shoot the inkblot?

ah. I see. Well, the plan was to have the animation as a one-shot that occurs just when the ink is thrown (i.e. new droplet sprites generated), while would be the looping animation that takes place during the "preparation". They're separate for technical reasons. They should chain like . Would that bring in the missing anticipation ?

Now, I admit that the "new" frame with pressure building up would be more interesting as a basis for the "preparation" looped animation. I'll try it out.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2013, 04:07:13 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #119 on: March 09, 2013, 07:17:11 pm

I would vote for that one. Now show us the ink!
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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #120 on: March 10, 2013, 03:31:49 pm

I would vote for that one. Now show us the ink!
Thanks for the vote.
is the ink.
(that's an emulator-recorded animation. it may skip some frame from time to time. I hope I'll be able to use the hardware to shear the sprites so that the larger horizontal speed droplets have, the more "skewed" they look).

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #121 on: March 14, 2013, 06:09:15 am
Hm... Is "Inky" supposed to fly in the air or was that just a test?

->
I like the spit-animation, but seeing Inky moving around, I think it could be a bit more dynamic. With my humble animating-capabilities, I only could think of a small bounce, caused by the inertia of the ink.

Another thing, when Inky starts to spit, his eyes get centered again. This is a bit confusing for my eye, I would suggest doing different spit animations with the eyes looking in the correct direction.
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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #122 on: March 14, 2013, 08:14:24 am
Nice animations. I agree with LazyCow though that the ink bottle enemies should "jump" instead of float. That's what the animation seems to suggest he's doing.
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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #123 on: March 14, 2013, 01:19:18 pm
Hm... Is "Inky" supposed to fly in the air or was that just a test?
He's indeed supposed to float, or to camp on some location. Actually, he's the moving platform of the level, but a platform that may throw you up and throw droplets when you're not riding him.

Quote
Another thing, when Inky starts to spit, his eyes get centered again. This is a bit confusing for my eye, I would suggest doing different spit animations with the eyes looking in the correct direction.
The more things progress, the more it seems to be an un-satisfying choice to have such a strong direction for the eyes. I need to think about it.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2013, 03:35:01 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #124 on: March 14, 2013, 02:39:48 pm
If they are floating, maybe have them sit on top of a platform of some kind? For example, a revolving ruler with pencils as the plaforms -> the inkbottle is camping the pencil. It seems like an odd/inconsistent choice to have an ink bottle fly around, when it doesn't really have any qualities that would allow it to do that. (If it was spitting ink as a weird kind of jetpack, that would make some kind of sense.)
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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #125 on: March 14, 2013, 03:50:30 pm
If they are floating, maybe have them sit on top of a platform of some kind? For example, a revolving ruler with pencils as the plaforms -> the inkbottle is camping the pencil. It seems like an odd/inconsistent choice to have an ink bottle fly around, when it doesn't really have any qualities that would allow it to do that. (If it was spitting ink as a weird kind of jetpack, that would make some kind of sense.)

Well, common sense (including mine) dictates that you're right. There are plenty of situations where I could have a physical support even though the Inkjets move around, as you suggest. There are a few cases (involved as key elements in some levels I designed already) where I have no good alternative because they really serve the floating platform purpose.

Yet, former video games are full of floating platforms that float for no clear reason (or abstract reasons not depicted on screen), and the rules in Bilou's world are usually more cartoony than any realistic. I'm very tempted to follow this line, although I admit that for gameplay reasons, it could be interesting to have a visual clue on whether an inkjet is camping or floating (like "when they're empty, they can float").

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #126 on: March 14, 2013, 03:54:43 pm
Even with a cartoonish sense of physics, it would make more sense for the player to see those inkwells standing on moving platforms. You could then create platforms with one or various black stains.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #127 on: March 14, 2013, 09:59:35 pm
The problem is, usually floaty platforms are non-animated blocks of some kind. They are also very consistent. "Square blocks can move around vertically or horizontally in the air." But wouldn't it look wrong/scary if suddenly the platforms started following you around or floating around in non-consistent patterns?
What about the ink bottles makes them special? Is there a special reason why they can float while other enemies can't? Why doesn't it show in their design? Even giving inkbottles wings would make better sense than having them slide around on the screen. (Also, the way they can touch the platform as they pass it by without reacting to it makes it look even weirder, as in sidescrollers touching platforms -> you are standing on it. Flying enemies always keep a certain distance from the platforms unless they are programmed to fly through walls.)

I strongly urge you to rethink your choice here, it's detracting from the rest of your game.
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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #128 on: March 15, 2013, 09:05:27 am
The problem is, usually floaty platforms are non-animated blocks of some kind. They are also very consistent. "Square blocks can move around vertically or horizontally in the air." But wouldn't it look wrong/scary if suddenly the platforms started following you around or floating around in non-consistent patterns?
I had no plans to have inkjet following the character. Actually, they're "on rails", and you can spot those direction-changing tiles that are still visible on the level.

Quote
What about the ink bottles makes them special? Is there a special reason why they can float while other enemies can't? Why doesn't it show in their design?
I have to admit that I have no good answer to those accurate questions. I could make up some like "but wait, they're carrying ink! the magic that brings words to life, etc." but that would not make it more consistent so I guess I'd better not try to.

Quote
(Also, the way they can touch the platform as they pass it by without reacting to it makes it look even weirder, as in sidescrollers touching platforms -> you are standing on it. Flying enemies always keep a certain distance from the platforms unless they are programmed to fly through walls.)
Oh, that's just the direction-changing tiles that are a bit too close. Nothing intentional here.

Quote
Even giving inkbottles wings would make better sense than having them slide around on the screen.
I strongly urge you to rethink your choice here, it's detracting from the rest of your game.
You definitely got a point here. I value "better game immersion through consistent fantasy", so since you demonstrated I have no way to make the fantasy of floating inkjets consistent, I will make my best to recycle levels and sprites to the best as soon as I'm done with the technical challenges in the engine that they allow me to illustrate and test.

Moreover, the fanbase approves. Let's make it so.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2013, 10:21:31 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #129 on: March 15, 2013, 12:48:50 pm
Quote
I had no plans to have inkjet following the character. Actually, they're "on rails", and you can spot those direction-changing tiles that are still visible on the level.
Hehe, that was mainly me trying to prove the case of how extremely important consistency is for a game. <:U!

I hope you find a solution that is satisfying to you~
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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #130 on: March 15, 2013, 02:39:22 pm
Hehe, that was mainly me trying to prove the case of how extremely important consistency is for a game. <:U!
Then it was definitely a good argument to make your point.

Oh, btw, it's pretty non-sense, but I find the following some funny and coherent non-sense. Ink by itslef is not floating and magic. If that was the case, there wouldn't be ink swamps in first place. Yet, ink reacts in a magnetic fashion to inspiration flows (think of something glowing moving up or down), that makes inkjets move up or down, although they have no possibilities to escape those flows to track Bilou.

Hmm... now, what I cannot explain is why the ink stays within the inkjet despite the flow pulling it up ... so I bet it's not consistent after all :P
« Last Edit: March 16, 2013, 08:30:24 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #131 on: March 16, 2013, 10:15:46 am
The blocks in the mickey game float because of the Mario tradition, there is a clear visual language communicated to players over a long period of time to make floating stone blocks with faces seem okay in such a platform game.

Inkwells just up and floating, and animated as they are, not so much. I would never think to use them as platforms and even when I would figure it out I would say 'well... this is weird' and it would take me out of the game.

You're controlling your game. You can find a better solution than this.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #132 on: March 17, 2013, 08:50:30 pm
I would never think to use them as platforms and even when I would figure it out I would say 'well... this is weird' and it would take me out of the game.

Thank you for providing feedback on this. I think I've found workarounds for all the level locations I had so far, now. You might see them camp, block your path, float (when empty) on the ink or bounce on super-elastic erasers, but there shouldn't float freely in the air anymore.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2013, 07:14:14 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #133 on: March 20, 2013, 07:05:21 am
As he looks now I would instinctively try to kill it.

If its a platform, try putting a lid on the bottle (probably a light colour e.g. off-white or yellow).
Let him look happier normally then his eyes squint (rather than being so angry) as he shakes from side to side, then the lid pops off and you can ride the lid up.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #134 on: March 24, 2013, 12:17:30 am
If something is attacking, I attack back. And I expect to be able to have an offensive effect - i.e. damage/destroy it.
When I encounter an indestructible enemy in a game, I always resent it.
I do find it neat when something is not susceptible to typical attacks and you have to get creative to destroy it - just like a few enemies in Zelda games where you must first freeze them, then quickly use a blunt force weapon to shatter them to destroy in one single blow when 100 conventional hits did nothing. That's always cool.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #135 on: March 24, 2013, 02:20:10 pm
As he looks now I would instinctively try to kill it.
Point taken. It is indeed a threat, and should be avoided most of the case. There will be some way to disable inkjets permanently, but only in some circumstances, and -- as Mathias will enjoy -- not through Bilou's typical ways of attack. Throwing a dumblador here will only produce a glassy sound, and trying to jump on it will only reveal to the player that inkjets can be used as bumpers.

To some extent, part of the story of Bilou lies in the resistence to those instincts, and use those dangerous denizens to overcome the challenges.

Quote
If its a platform, try putting a lid on the bottle (probably a light colour e.g. off-white or yellow).
Let him look happier normally then his eyes squint (rather than being so angry) as he shakes from side to side, then the lid pops off and you can ride the lid up.
good piece of advice, but I prefer keep his current look that match its role in the story, and figure out ways to use something else as a moving platform where I really have to.

Quote
If something is attacking, I attack back. And I expect to be able to have an offensive effect - i.e. damage/destroy it.
When I encounter an indestructible enemy in a game, I always resent it.
And that's the established rules for an action game. So I realise that it will be important for me to make sure that alternate behaviour (where the right move is *not* to attack back) leads to secrets or alternative routes, but that I do not force it on the straightforward path so that every player can make it through, just like Mario series do not use advanced technique as the "only one path" to get to the exit.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2013, 08:32:55 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #136 on: March 24, 2013, 09:59:23 pm
I, personally don't see this as a problem. For me, as long as the inkjets are explained before the player character has any interaction, then why would you feel the need to attack them? If you explain them as, unfriendly platforms that will push you off if you stand on them, then for me at least, I'd seem them as an obstacle, not an enemy. Just felt like throwing that out there.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #137 on: March 24, 2013, 10:15:06 pm
I had an idea for a potential inkjet-platform mechanic but... Well, you be the judge. <:U



Also my art tumblr: ymedronart.tumblr.com

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #138 on: March 25, 2013, 06:48:43 am
Thanks for sharing, Ymedron ^_^

I had something like
planned and kept secret since a while ago, with the "cork lid" being a sort of organic key that Bilou carries along to change the behaviour of inkjets. The idea is that the height Bilou could reach would be higher when he's using the lid.

The scenario you suggest is pretty interesting to, especially in its "tutorial" fashion. It also make me realise that adding a lid pretty much transform the inkjet into a block, where Bilou moves freely (i.e. walk and jumps as on plain ground), while without lid, you're stuck at a specific position. I also had plans to use the fact that Bilou's hand are busy when he "rides" an inkjet, and thus he cannot e.g. carry a blador along while riding. That's one of the motivation to keep "empty-inkjet-floating-on-ink" in some part of the levels to ensure that Bilou can only use the resources he acquires locally to solve puzzles.
« Last Edit: March 25, 2013, 10:17:52 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #139 on: March 29, 2013, 06:57:14 pm

I think I found the trick I'm missing. It will require to add some chemistry-themed items such as laying out bonuses into H2SO4, but having vertical bars and grips that make inkers move up and down would do the trick.

Habemus Atramentarium!

Now mock-up time and colour picking ^_^ ...
« Last Edit: March 29, 2013, 08:42:37 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #140 on: March 29, 2013, 07:50:11 pm
Yes, excellent. This is a solution I can get behind.
As an advance advice, make sure the movement rail is dark enough so the player doesn't think they can stand on it (if there are ones that go horizontally) :3c
Also my art tumblr: ymedronart.tumblr.com

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #141 on: March 30, 2013, 03:13:02 pm
Quote from: facet
I was really missing a run button and the little pauses and lack of inertia take away from the fluidity. I'd like to bounce and slide more.

I'm not done with the "button" issue, but here's a first attempt at the run animation with multi-sprite engine.
-- cleaned up
(PS: sorry for the curious pixels appearing here and there. Issue with the emulator and captures)
« Last Edit: June 04, 2013, 11:08:42 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #142 on: March 30, 2013, 06:23:03 pm
I like how smooth the animation looks.

Should the pupils move from left to right however since the rest of the face does?

(pas mal les notes manuscites à côté, haha).

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : injet ahead! [c+c]

Reply #143 on: March 30, 2013, 08:15:00 pm
I like how smooth the animation looks.
I added a "split time" option in my animation editor to add in-between frames ^_^

Quote
Should the pupils move from left to right however since the rest of the face does?
I decided to avoid that. The rationale is that Bilou keeps his gaze focused to an objective when running, although he cannot prevent his headbody to twist while running.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : books updated [c+c]

Reply #144 on: April 12, 2013, 08:22:50 pm

Yeah that is better but make more rounded shadow and the book paper end angle is too triagled.. i think its should be more rounded.. Also I made for you some kind of paper texture...forgive my bad english..

Edit.



Hai Sensei.



(still need to work on those darker lines so that they work well to break repetition rather than introducing some.)
(Note to self: trying to lay out a mock-up in a DS emulator is really a bad idea).
« Last Edit: April 13, 2013, 09:38:12 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : books updated [c+c]

Reply #145 on: June 01, 2013, 07:09:26 am
It's been a long time of animation experimenting and tools upgrade ... but here he is:
Quote
The Marching Pen(cil sol)dat.

Does he need anything fixed?
« Last Edit: June 01, 2013, 08:49:16 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : books updated [c+c]

Reply #146 on: June 01, 2013, 09:42:56 am
I think in one of the frames a black line appears just underneath his eyes. I'm not sure whether that is his mouth or not. At the moment it looks a bit off.
I can't be bothered to make a signature. Seriously, who has time to write these things? I have stuff to do, games to make, and you expect me to write a big, long signature?  I'm not your slave. You can't tell me what to do, so no, I WON'T write a signature.

Oh, wait...

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : books updated [c+c]

Reply #147 on: June 01, 2013, 10:31:09 am
I think in one of the frames a black line appears just underneath his eyes. I'm not sure whether that is his mouth or not. At the moment it looks a bit off.
Diantre!

That's un-intended. I'm not satisfied either with the way "angling" of the pencil is performed so far ...
Quote
is better ?

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : books updated [c+c]

Reply #148 on: June 01, 2013, 10:35:56 am
Overall one thing stands out to me a lot: while the twisting of the pencil produces a decent perspective effect, the eyes don't seem to be included in this -- they feel a little like a cardboard cutout. It feels to me as though they should have at least two frames where they angle a little down.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2013, 10:38:44 am by Ai »
New AA tutorial, about handling irregular lines.

'Better software looks like "people who know what their problem is and why they have it"'

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #149 on: June 01, 2013, 12:27:01 pm
Overall one thing stands out to me a lot: while the twisting of the pencil produces a decent perspective effect, the eyes don't seem to be included in this -- they feel a little like a cardboard cutout. It feels to me as though they should have at least two frames where they angle a little down.
Hmm, I had no intention to put twisting here, rather tilting, but I copy the issue on cardboard eyes.
Quote
Does this improve the situation ?

prior concept art for pendats
« Last Edit: June 04, 2013, 11:34:30 am by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #150 on: June 16, 2013, 11:23:32 am
Quote
-->
Iterated. Hope it's getting better. (speed modification happened out of control >_<)

(what? Google is restructuring the gif89 I submit in blogger into gif87 without the transparency or delay control 0_0 ?)
« Last Edit: June 26, 2013, 02:52:10 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #151 on: October 19, 2013, 10:25:28 am
Hello, all. I'd like to address thanks to all of you who have helped with the school zone revamp. A playable level is now ready to celebrate the 20 years of our blue-ball hero Bilou.



I'm still open to C+C on what I have so far... I realised last week that I have room to roughly double my tileset, so I guess there will be more activity on the graphics in the incoming weeks.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #152 on: November 15, 2013, 12:47:47 pm
Hi again.


In my last level, I've got a place which should read as "a student's desk", the kind where you had some storage room under the desk which you could be tempted to use to hide things from your professors. I'm trying to give it a somewhat more "intimate" look than the rest of the level but it doesn't really work to my eyes. I'm trying some wooden texture to replace the current "plain color" scheme, but most of the items I think of to fill the gaps would rather be front-plane (e.g. they get too much attention).
Any opinion so far ?

(PS: the plain-white triangle is a level-editor artefact)

edit:


throwing some ideas... replacing vertical supports by twisted wooden structure (~15 blocks needed)
a paper note laying on the desk (~12 blocks)
texture (min 6 blocks)
a folder in the back (10 blocks for the corners)
I should have enough VRAM for all this ... and possibly some spare tiles to revamp the other bonus room.
« Last Edit: November 15, 2013, 09:23:14 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #153 on: November 16, 2013, 01:37:12 pm

Some more work done. Does it still look like a student's desk in an owl-school ?

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #154 on: November 16, 2013, 06:56:51 pm
I kinda felt like the original felt more like the kind of desk you were going for, any of those desks I've ever seen personally have always been complete metal under the wooden top. I do think making it more decorative is nice, but trying to make it feel like it was made of a different material below the top could help to portray it better.
It's decently readable as a desk as long as you have the knowledge of the area being in a classroom before hand, I think designing the stage in a way that harkens back to the environment they would be in would help make it clear what it is.
For example lining up many of these areas like this next to each other in the level, to get the feeling of how many desks are lined up in rows in a classroom.

Unrelated to the desk itself but, in this shot it feels like the background is competing for attention from anything in the foreground. The scene is readable and such but it feels a bit hard to focus on the stuff in the foreground. Perhaps lowering contrast/detail of the background a bit could help with this, although it's mainly the decorative patterns at the bottom that are so distracting.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #155 on: November 21, 2013, 05:22:35 pm

color update trying to address the "distracting/wallpaper" effect within the desk.

Quote
it's mainly the decorative patterns at the bottom that are so distracting.
Yeah, I see what you mean. I will see what are my options to address that.
« Last Edit: November 21, 2013, 08:35:56 pm by PypeBros »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #156 on: November 24, 2013, 01:33:42 pm
Wallpaper looks nice! I would add little bit contrast..

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #157 on: November 25, 2013, 08:22:28 am
Quote
Perhaps lowering contrast/detail of the background a bit could help with this, (...)
Quote
I would add little bit contrast..
My options are unfortunately quite limited here.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_monochrome_and_RGB_palettes#15-bit_RGB)  I'm already using almost neighbour colours of the NDS palette (5-bit RGB). There's just one or two bits difference between the over-contrasted image (http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-1kC0lKwPe6E/Uod0In9YrGI/AAAAAAAAFC4/4OWx-KbQppY/s1600/B.png) and the under-contrasted one. I'm open to suggestions if someone find colours I have missed, but to be honest, I haven't found anything better.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #158 on: November 25, 2013, 08:12:31 pm
I think the one with more contrast looks fine.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #159 on: December 02, 2013, 11:11:17 am

Removed some noise on the background pattern and started detailing the "claws/question-mark" thing at the top of the "pillar" for the desk. Not so easy to avoid pillow shading 0_o.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #160 on: May 17, 2014, 07:44:49 pm
Still alive. Took some time to improve the pixel art of the pillar, although I'm afraid I sort of broke the continuity of the tiles. the middle part still need work.

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #161 on: November 25, 2014, 10:26:53 pm

Adding a run animation for the pencil soldat.



(looping fixed for the previous post)
« Last Edit: November 30, 2014, 10:22:25 pm by PixelPiledriver »

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #162 on: November 30, 2014, 12:43:27 pm
Not much to say except that I love the bounce of the pencil dude. The pillars shape is a little confusing maybe? and the way you are clustering is making it look a touch flat, but it's a fairly minor gripe all up.


Keep up the good work! :y:

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Re: [wip] Bilou's school : Pendats goes marchin' in [c+c]

Reply #163 on: November 30, 2014, 10:05:37 pm
The pillars shape is a little confusing maybe? and the way you are clustering is making it look a touch flat, but it's a fairly minor gripe all up.
Thanks for pointing out. I'll look for ways to improve that. The pillar is supposed to be sort of twisted, like with forgery.