Critique => Pixel Art => Topic started by: Singularity on August 03, 2010, 08:42:09 pm

Title: [WIP][Newbie] Kid Chameleon Remake - Sprite Work
Post by: Singularity on August 03, 2010, 08:42:09 pm
Greetings pixelated community.

I have recently obtained and begun to try my hand at multimedia fusion 2, and now that I have my own means to create games, making sprites has become a priority.
My inspiration for this project comes from Kid Chameleon for the Sega Genesis among several other games. For those who haven't played it, helmets are picked up to change your character. For instance, a hockey mask changes you into a psycho wielding an axe. Understandably, I have a lot of work ahead of me if I am going to be creating 6+ characters all with independent animations, just for the hero. If anyone is interested in collaborating, pixel art or programming, just hit me up.

I plan to start posting my own graphics shortly; Suggestions and critiques will always be welcome.

Title: Re: [WIP][Newbie] Kid Chameleon Remake - Sprite Work
Post by: PixelPiledriver on August 04, 2010, 10:50:41 pm
Cool. MMF2 is awesome. Heres a few tips:

- Download the HWA version - Hardware Accelerated. DirectX 9, more objects on screen, more loops, bigger images, higher frame rates, better compatibility on other computers, shaders (distortions,filters,colorization etc). get it here: http://www.clickteam.com/epicenter/ubbthreads.php?ubb=postlist&Board=64&page=1
Also grab the very exellent shader packs by Looki and Sphax. Awesome stuff. Even if your game is very simple or you do not want to use shaders your game will at least benefit from the directX 9 and better compatibility.

-Set your game to 60 fps - the default is 50fps which can sometimes make it to seem like your game is lagging. Its not. 60 is good. looks nice.

- Program everything in one frame - avoid making too many frames too quickly. Create a base engine frame that you keep coming back to when you change stuff. If you make different code changes to an object across multiple frames it can get very time consuming pulling them all back together. Feel free to make more frames and design levels but go back to your main frame when you want to make code changes to an object and then copy it back to the frame you were working on. Clone your base engine frame every so often, especially if you are about to make a major change or re-write, so you can go back if needed. When your base engine frame is done clone it out and complete the game.

- Use behaviors - This lets you put code inside of each object. Click an object and look in the 6th tab of the properties panel. Add a new behavior and then click 'edit'. Add events. Now if you move the object to a new frame it will carry all of its code with it. It saves you from having to scroll thru all the code for every object in the main event editor stack. Keep in mind its cool to put events in the main event editor too but you will save a lot of confusion this way.

-Use Event Groups - in any event editor right click on an event number on the left. Go to 'insert' and click 'A Group of Events'. Name it, hit enter to create. Put some events inside. The cool thing is you can Double Click groups to unroll  and roll them back up. Many objects in your game will have a ton of events. this will let you find what your looking for quickly and save screen space.

- SWF is cool but more limited - If you decide to make it a SWF game you will only be able to use the basic object types. Loops will also kill your game so try not to use them. I had a really great engine going only to have it overload. Changing a SWF game into an EXE game is possible (but kind of a headache in some parts) but converting an EXE game to SWF is pretty much impossible. Too much code to redo. So decide before you start. 

- Theres (almost) always a way - if a bug is destroying your game theres almost always a way to fix it. Whether its just a mistake or simple hole that needs to be plugged there is an answer. Check your code again. Search the forums. Someone else has had the same problem at some point and there is probably already an answer.

-Use Graphics Gale - Its much better than the drawing and animation editor in MMF2. Don't get me wrong. The Fusion editor is really good but the features of GG are too good to pass up. Just Import PNG's without alpha and define the alpha color to the background color of your animation upon import. Objects without an alpha map have per pixel collision (yay!). Also the less objects you give an alpha map the smaller your file size will be. Feel free to give choice objects an alpha map but realize that the alpha areas will also cause collisions and you will give up the very cool per pixel collision for that object. However you can just use collision based on distance to fix that.

- Check the ClickTeam forums at least once a week- Just check the most recent posts of each section. You will almost always learn something or there will be a cool update to an object or example file. Or you can help someone else.

- Save backups! - just in case. I lost a decent game to a hard drive exploding. Random, but it happens.

- Ask me - I'm not a genius. And I've got a lot of stuff to do. But I have a decent amount of experience with MMF2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xBSbMyyzpIU 
All programming done by me. All art done by my girlfriend.

Pick and choose as you will. These aren't laws. Just tips based on my own experiences. Theres a crap load of other things to consider but these came to mind most readily as things I didn't  know when I started and would have liked to know back then.

I assume you wanted art suggestions but these could also be helpful. I'll leave that to everyone else for now. Cool stuff. Make it happen. It's a really awesome program and more people should learn it.
Title: Re: [WIP][Newbie] Kid Chameleon Remake - Sprite Work
Post by: Jad on August 05, 2010, 07:28:41 am
This post, although it's not related directly to pixel art in every aspect, is incredibly helpful and nutritious. Welcome to pixelation, dude! Keep it up. :D
Title: Re: [WIP][Newbie] Kid Chameleon Remake - Sprite Work
Post by: Singularity on August 06, 2010, 01:47:40 am
Wow man...  ;D
Very illuminating stuff. I haven't brought myself to figure out most of the functionality your talking about, but now I have a better understanding and know what to look for when I'm trying to solve things.

It's true that I posted this here for artistic advice, but I have also been doing a ton of unsuccessful trial and error techniques and video tutorials with Fusion. Unfortunately, my copy of MMFD 2 is not recognized by the hardware accelerated updates. Since it doesn't think I have the original, they refuse to install.  :mean: I'm going to continue hunting for another copy that the updates might recognize.

I'm not sure if my initial questions are something that might be solved by faster run times, but I have noticed collision bugs already with my character.
They are reduced when I change my character graphic to a square, but still exist:

1. When the hero is pushing against an obstacle, and also tries to jump over it, he jumps straight up over the height of the obstacles, but stays in the same column. He has to jump, clear the 'roof' of the object, and then hold over. Holding over too early screws the it up.
2. He sometimes gets stopped when jumping into an obstacle. A gray block above and next to him can stop him anywhere from 0-6 pixels before he touches it.
3. If he jumps underneath a block and hits his head, he hovers there for a second and then
4. falls straight down.
...I presume he hovers because he is still trying to complete the arch of it jump, and the "bounce" off the gray block didn't make him lose his momentum upwards. But still, if he does this over a pit, he cannot control is fall.

Sorry to ask so many questions right off the bat, but my previous searches didn't reveal much to me. I'm kind of hoping that there is a common solution, to make this easier to answer. Thanks a ton for your time!
Title: Re: [WIP][Newbie] Kid Chameleon Remake - Sprite Work
Post by: PixelPiledriver on August 06, 2010, 08:21:48 am
Thats a weird problem with the HWA... dunno. keep trying.

Made an example for you:


This should cure all (or most) of your platform problems. 2 main things are used here.

1. PMO - It uses the Platform Movement Object which gives much better control and response that you expect of a platform game. Its a step up in complexity (not that high) but its worth the time to understand cause it will make your game much better. The basic platform movement can be very buggy as you have described

2. Collision Object - The collision of platform type characters is best represented as a separate obj for multiple reasons. I'll type up a list in my next post but i assume you have already experienced many of the reasons. use this for collision with backdrop obstacles. however you can and should do all the attack and damage collision based on the player obj.  I just paste the characters face on it so I can quickly distinguish it from other collision objects.

The code is all inside of the little blue guy so 'click' him, look in the 6th tab of properties and select 'behaviors', 'click' the '...' and then 'click' 'edit'. This will take you to the objects personal event editor. Here's a picture of how to get there:


Its kinda late here. I have a math test tommorow so I'm gonna bounce for now. I'll be back with a much more extensive post later. But for now mess around. Look through the code. Check out how it works.

And for anyone who doesn't have Fusion that wants to play around here is the EXE:


enjoy! :)
Title: Re: [WIP][Newbie] Kid Chameleon Remake - Sprite Work
Post by: Singularity on August 15, 2010, 12:21:53 am
Hmm, my flawed copy seems to be holding me back. I'm probably going to have to save up and get another one.
The .mfa refuses to load since it makes use of the PMO system which I don't have.

Your .exe runs perfectly and I am seeing now why collision is much easier to work with a regular and static shape. A falling animation with arms out could catch a guy on an edge, turning around with a sword could stick the sword into a wall awkwardly, et cetera.

I'm still messing around with the behaviors getting a feeling for it, but now that I realize that my project relies on a new MMFD2 copy, I can't make anything refined enough to be a finished product. But, that still isn't stopping me from experimenting in my free time until I can afford a to buy it. Thanks again for the extensive posts! And I hope you did good on your math test. ;D
Title: Re: [WIP][Newbie] Kid Chameleon Remake - Sprite Work
Post by: PixelPiledriver on August 15, 2010, 01:39:14 am

Go here: http://www.clickteam.com/epicenter/

Look to the right and Download these 2 files:


One of the 2 bonus packs should contain the PMO. Once you get it in it'll look like this:


Yeah you've got the right idea. Everything on a character colliding with the environment causes lots of problems. For the most part you can get away with using the entire character sprite to do attack and damage collisions. But sometimes its best to just create an effect or an invisible square obj to deal damage.

PMO is developed by Clickteam so you shouldn't have any trouble getting it to install. If its not in the bonus packs or it doesn't work...... that sucks. but it should work!

The other advantage of Behaviors that I forgot to mention is that its good for making clones. Right click and 'clone' the obj as many times as you need. All of the events that refer to the original obj will be replaced with the clone/s. Just remember if you are going to make like 10 clones of something and you need to update code, update the original and then re clone. If you are forced to update each individual clone with a small piece of code (because their behaviors diverged at some point) you can copy past the events you need and then replace the obj to the current obj. But beware the broken obj (looks like a little cracked rock). You will need to 'import' any objs that are not already in the obj list of the current objs behavior. you can import and replace events as shown in the images:

This is the result of pasting in events without importing the necessary objs first.
Import the obj you need.You can also use 'import all objects'. any objs that are not used in the events will dissapear from the list when you leave this screen:

Replace the obj with the obj you are currently inside of:


One more tip. You can move back and forth between the Frame editor and the last Event editor that you used with a 4 button mouse.
3rd mouse button (on the left side)- Back
4th mouse button (on the right side)- Forward

Yes I did well on my math test! it was calculus stuff. had to study but its nothing impossible.  :blind:
Title: Re: [WIP][Newbie] Kid Chameleon Remake - Sprite Work
Post by: Singularity on August 22, 2010, 05:20:53 pm
Excellent stuff man. Thanks a ton.
Sorry I've not been around as much...
I've been backed up a little lately now that schools starting for me, but I definitely plan to keep going with this.  ;D
Title: Re: [WIP][Newbie] Kid Chameleon Remake - Sprite Work
Post by: PixelPiledriver on August 24, 2010, 07:22:46 am
yah no problem. always happy to assist with game stuff. :)
School starts for me next month as well. Should be fun and very challenging.

The sprites look cool.  :y: Your list of features are fun and very doable.
If you need any help with making the code work gimme a post. It'd be better than PMing me because some of this info might be really helpful for other people as well.

At some point I might start a Fusion thread and write out the majority of what I know and have experienced. But as that will take lots of time and organization I can't really promise when that will be. Just asking me specifics will work for now.

PS: to the forum moderators: Sorry for junking up the forums with non-pixel art stuff! :blind: This seems like a good place to share game knowledge as well as art knowledge. Thanks for hosting.