Critique => 2D & 3D => Topic started by: Pizza Tom on May 17, 2012, 07:13:34 pm

Title: Lowpoly Charon
Post by: Pizza Tom on May 17, 2012, 07:13:34 pm
In my game design course right now were making a retro themed game. I talked my group into going for a lowpoly style with pixel graphics. Our idea was to make a game where you play as Charon ferrying souls across the River Styx (think like Frogger, but back and forth with a time limit). As it stands, this is the main character of our game:


(boat not pictured)
Hes sitting at 121 polys with a 32x32 texture (8 colors). Im actually rather proud of this piece, as my pixel stuff is usually lacking on its own. :D

My main issue with it is the area around the sides of the skull where the geometry comes to a point. I cant seem to find a way to make the pixels there not look incredibly awkward. Even if I did, Im not sure exactly how Id fake the lighting in that area anyway. :/
All crits are welcome though! Im eager to improve; this style has me positively hooked.
Title: Re: Lowpoly Charon
Post by: Pizza Tom on June 19, 2012, 04:39:02 pm
Not sure if there's a problem with updating your own topic after such a long time.. :P

Thanks to the help from my other thread, I finally got the ball rolling on the actual game:
http://i47.tinypic.com/2a9a7tx.jpg (http://i47.tinypic.com/2a9a7tx.jpg)
Final player character:
http://i50.tinypic.com/se3dig.jpg (http://i50.tinypic.com/se3dig.jpg)
The happy (or not) souls:
http://i50.tinypic.com/35ck1m0.jpg (http://i50.tinypic.com/35ck1m0.jpg)
Other stuff!
http://i46.tinypic.com/2z86s13.jpg (http://i46.tinypic.com/2z86s13.jpg)
http://i49.tinypic.com/e5hhtw.jpg (http://i49.tinypic.com/e5hhtw.jpg)
http://i47.tinypic.com/24z8xuv.jpg (http://i47.tinypic.com/24z8xuv.jpg)

All the models are less than a hundred polys with a 32x32 texture on each. If anyone would care to crit my unwraps or textures themselves I could post those too.

Obviously the HUD is still very much WIP, I was thinking of going for this evenutally:

(The faces show how many passenger souls you have, the skulls are lives)

I'm also planning on moving the timer and coin to just above the boat. But before I commit to that I wanted to make sure the shading on the boat was decent. :P

It'd probably be nice to see the boat without the other elements... >.>

Other things to work on:
-thinking of transition tiles for the grass/dirt so it's not as harsh
-particle effect for the objects in the water so they look less like they're floating above the surface
-signposts on each dropoff point for the different coin values

As before, any crits welcome. :'D Please?

Edit2: Added text links since the forum didn't like my clickable thumbnails (guessing it has to do with the zoom script).
Title: Re: Lowpoly Charon
Post by: Grundy on June 19, 2012, 05:27:22 pm
If this is the Styxx then you have a very uplifting/bright/carefree visualisation of it.
Is this intentional?
Title: Re: Lowpoly Charon
Post by: Grimsane on June 19, 2012, 05:30:33 pm
if that's the river styx that's far to vibrant and standard/over-worldly

some colour suggestions:

It's easy to hue shift and make adjustments to your textures, Looks like an interesting game, especially for a frogger-esque one

the designs are pretty nice and effective for what they are.

blood or lava would be interesting, lava would raise the question of why the boats not on fire (or maybe you could add an ignited/on fire effect to the logs and his raft, would feed the ferryman to hell theme)

*haha ninja'd  >:(
edit: and you're ghosts look quite alot like sperm but hey :lala: //observation not a crit, they work fine
Title: Re: Lowpoly Charon
Post by: Grundy on June 19, 2012, 06:01:15 pm
Title: Re: Lowpoly Charon
Post by: Pizza Tom on June 19, 2012, 06:24:11 pm
I probably should have clarified, this is only the first level. The second stage will look more traditional underworld type stuff (lots of gray craggy rocks, green glowing water) and the third is all lava/hellish (the boat/objects will likely be on fire, for the record).  My team and I figured it should start out a little lighter looking to reflect the difficulty, as the later stages let you carry less souls and the obstacles move faster.

The hue shift examples Grimsane posted are giving me a lot to think about though! I'm especially digging the second to bottom strip, it's giving me a Zelda dark world vibe. I'll run it by my team, but for now I'll styx with the one I have now.

Haha, as for the souls looking like sperm, I figured it was mostly unavoidable, so I'm okay with it. :P
Title: Re: Lowpoly Charon
Post by: Seiseki on June 19, 2012, 07:15:22 pm
Haha, as for the souls looking like sperm, I figured it was mostly unavoidable, so I'm okay with it. :P

Do what most anime series do and add a blue glow.. :)
Or you could make them more like white flames..
Title: Re: Lowpoly Charon
Post by: Grundy on June 19, 2012, 10:22:14 pm
I cannot speak for you. And i dont know how much exposure this game will get.
But when i showed my games to other people during my education i learned that there are some things in games that just about every player notices and points out to you. Like characters resembling sperm. If you do not change this there is a chance you will hear they look like sperm a lot of times. Which can be a bummer during presentations and pitches.

Pardon my terrible pixelart skills but i took the liberty of trying out some shapes for spirits.
They are not all that good and the addition of arms may take away from their simplicity but you may consider it a start for your own redesign.
or just take one of these, after all they're just shapes.


I'd say: Keep up the good work!
This whole game is starting to look really cool and i am very interested in playing it!
I still dont understand why a difficulty curve should be visualised by a gradually changing surrounding though. Are tougher levels further down the river maybe?
Title: Re: Lowpoly Charon
Post by: Pizza Tom on June 28, 2012, 12:46:13 am
Here's a quick update on where we're at now:


Got signs and particles in the first level, and different coin values coded. Not much left to do here (though I would still like a bobbing animation on the obstacles.)


Very excited about our second level! :D There's still a bit to do here, like the coin value indicators on the left and swapping the logs for the actual level 2 obstacles. I'm not exactly in love with the ground tile for this area, either. Also don't worry, that garish water is very WIP, just a palette swap of the first one (though with the clock running out, we might have to run with something similar...  :( )

In general, I still need to do something about the souls. Due to the time we have left, a blue halo would be the easiest (thanks Seiseki!), but because of the way my models were brought into unity I'd have to re-import them all first. Ugh.

@Grundy I appreciate the feedback, and believe you me, I'd love to change the shapes if I ever pick this back up after my class is done. As for your question about the difficulty... Maybe the first area is for "training" and the rest are in the "real" underworld? I know that in Greek myths specifically there's different areas you go after dying, so we'll likely explain it away with that.  :lala:
Title: Re: Lowpoly Charon
Post by: Grimsane on June 28, 2012, 07:49:36 am
still not a fan of that vibrant tone of the first

can you try persuade your team at least let you bring it back to something like this?

the tone and overall mood of the 2nd level looks nice especially dig the glow from the now somewhat ominous and toxic lake, and dead trees?
dunno if it is but might be worth adding the slightest hint of colour to them to avoid them reading like stone, and the garish water doesn't look too bad arguably it's consistent so maybe not worth allocating time to if you have a strict time line
Title: Re: Lowpoly Charon
Post by: Grundy on June 28, 2012, 10:31:04 am
Ah. Progress! 2nd Level looks very Styxxy!

if time is running out then i would not worry too much about the ground and water texture of it. It does a fine job of conveying the message.
The green glowth saves the day here.

I understand the hassle of reimporting characters. Maybe you can change their pivot so that the tail goes straight upward:
I guess you would have to update the texture but because its head is then on another place the hint of forward motion acosiated with S-cells is gone. And then it just looks more like a flame. But i suspect you already considered it. Also: i think you can change a model's hue by code.

Ill shut up about it now :) Its not really about pixelart anymore.
Carry on! Good stuff!
I want to play this game one day? ok?