AuthorTopic: Trouble with cyberpunk color pallettes  (Read 1162 times)

Offline Double7

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 36
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile

Trouble with cyberpunk color pallettes

on: January 12, 2017, 05:28:11 am
Hey guys. Haven't been here for a while and I am happy to say that I now have some time to work on some games :D

So my friends and I were talking about what type of game we wanted to work on and we came to the decision we would make an NES quality cyberpunk game. (NES being the resolution). It would be very reminiscent of the original legend of zelda as far as character size goes.

The reason we decided on this sort of size is so that we could max out on story, level design, and the types of things I really enjoy about games and that I want to include. In past projects where I used this NES scale I also used the NES color palette, which probably won't work too well. So I need a color palette that would work in this cyberpunk underground type of world.

Also, we plan on throwing lighting effects ontop of the game to give it more ambiance and to transform the NES style a bit.

Here is some colors I found while looking at a couple hundred different cyber punk photos, some pixel some not. I want to get a wide range of colors so that different areas can have different "feels" color wise so that the player can have a better sense of what the world's structure is.



Any tips for me? Know any palettes that would work well for this?

Thanks as always guys.

Offline MysteryMeat

  • 0011
  • **
  • Posts: 984
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • "The new alternative to q-tipping your cat!"
    • spoiledmysterymeat
    • View Profile
    • My rad art blog!

Re: Trouble with cyberpunk color pallettes

Reply #1 on: January 12, 2017, 06:03:24 am
I do actually have some advice for this, yeah!
Essentially, you want to go for harsh neons and high contrasts for most things.
Black, dark purple, and browns should make up the bulk of the picture with elements outside of that being very bright and glaring or artificial-looking neons!

This picture shows off the concept well, most of the walls and fog of this scene are portrayed with black and a muddy red/brown, for harsh unnatural lighting. The props and scenery are highlighted with bright neon blues and yellows, with some reds here and there as well.
Google will be an excellent resource for this, just the word "cyberpunk" brings up a wealth of usable reference images! And when in doubt, Blade Runner remains one of the biggest influences on the subgenre and there's plenty of other ideas to take from it, like this shot of the Tyrell building:

This one only really uses blacks and golds, something that the game Deus Ex made use of heavily in its own scenery!

Experiment!

And on a slightly-related note, one of my friends runs a somewhat minimalist cyberpunk universe called static on the wire here that might help you if you're planning a more simplified art style:
http://tgchan.org/wiki/Static_on_the_Wire

He often manages to sell the cyberpunk vibe of his story with little more than a near-binary palette of orange and black!
PSA: use imgur
http://pixelation.org/index.php?topic=19838.0 also go suggest on my quest, cmon
MAJOR BORK TALLY: |

Offline Ozego

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 35
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile

Re: Trouble with cyberpunk color pallettes

Reply #2 on: January 12, 2017, 01:58:19 pm
I think you can do it in pretty much any color composition you chose, just remember that in cyberpunk nation it's always night.





Offline ErekT

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 328
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • fistful of pixels
    • View Profile

Re: Trouble with cyberpunk color pallettes

Reply #3 on: January 12, 2017, 03:24:39 pm
More industrial and post-apocalypse than cyberpunk maybe but Cyber Shadow sticks pretty close to NES limitations:

https://twitter.com/mekaskull?lang=en

Shatterhand is worth giving a look also if you haven't done so already.

Offline Double7

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 36
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile

Re: Trouble with cyberpunk color pallettes

Reply #4 on: January 12, 2017, 07:03:46 pm
Thanks everyone. This will really help me out. Those are some great links and amazing pictures. I will keep you guys posted on my progress once I start creating some sprites.

Hopefully anyone else with the same issue as me can use this post as well. :)

Offline Double7

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 36
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile

Re: Trouble with cyberpunk color pallettes

Reply #5 on: January 13, 2017, 12:26:58 am
Here is what I came up with for the scenery color palette. Opinions? I don't know if I used too much or too little. For the green I went for a jade type of color and I tried to have a LOT of colors for the basic buildings (the brick on the left). The right will be most of the colors that pop on signs and for lighting.

Offline eishiya

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 218
  • Karma: +2/-0
    • DerpTree
    • http://pixeljoint.com/p/28889.htm
    • View Profile

Re: Trouble with cyberpunk color pallettes

Reply #6 on: January 13, 2017, 12:56:36 am
Draw some scenes first. There's no other way to know what colours you'll need, and what colours are redundant.

Try starting your palette with just a few "key" colours, e.g. your general dark colours, and then a few colours for the neon lighting/accents. Then, add more variants as you need them. You don't need an entire palette to start working. Let your needs drive your palette, don't let your palette control your art.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2017, 01:02:53 am by eishiya »

Offline ErekT

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 328
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • fistful of pixels
    • View Profile

Re: Trouble with cyberpunk color pallettes

Reply #7 on: January 13, 2017, 02:14:44 am
eishiya is right. Your main tool for building atmosphere is good use of light and shadow, worry about them colors later.

Here's a four color monochrome to illustrate:

Offline Double7

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 36
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile

Re: Trouble with cyberpunk color pallettes

Reply #8 on: January 15, 2017, 12:05:29 am
Here is what I came up with using a purple/blue theme. Any ideas for this at all?

Offline MysteryMeat

  • 0011
  • **
  • Posts: 984
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • "The new alternative to q-tipping your cat!"
    • spoiledmysterymeat
    • View Profile
    • My rad art blog!

Re: Trouble with cyberpunk color pallettes

Reply #9 on: January 15, 2017, 12:58:11 am
Hmm, I'd say it's not tall enough. The perspective on the roof is a bit odd too, I'd drop it down a tad both to better match the smaller roof on the right and gel with the perspective on the wall a bit more.
Colorways I'd need to see how it fits into a scene to really tell, try slapping some roadways or an example of what characters might look like to juxtapose it with!
PSA: use imgur
http://pixelation.org/index.php?topic=19838.0 also go suggest on my quest, cmon
MAJOR BORK TALLY: |