Pixelation

Critique => Pixel Art => Pixel Art Feature Chest => Topic started by: cels on April 28, 2014, 08:51:25 am

Title: GR#184 - Dungeon Tiles - RPG view
Post by: cels on April 28, 2014, 08:51:25 am
EDIT: Fixed silly title.

These are my tiles. I don't have much experience working with tiles, and I'm trying to look at what different people are doing and learning from them, but it's not easy. So I'm just going to post my WIP stuff here, even though I'm still at the stage where I'm experimenting with different approaches.

Everything is WIP. All comments are useful.

The bush is supposed to be ivy, by the way. It's supposed to cling to the walls, but right now I feel it looks more like a tree than anything. And I don't want it to be just a few scattered ivy leaves on thin branches, I want a massive wall of leaves.

(http://i.imgur.com/UBaZgpP.png)
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: questseeker on April 28, 2014, 09:24:39 am
The bush offers a beautiful rendition of large, deeply lobed, and solid green leaves: instead of attempting to draw rather different ivy leaves you could give up and adopt some large climber which actually has that sort of leaves, for example Ampelopsis (simple leaf shapes (http://cargocollective.com/plantas2/Ampelopsis-brevipedunculata) and fancy ones (http://www.robsplants.com/plants/AmpelBrevi)) or other Vitaceae.
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: Mr. Fahrenheit on April 28, 2014, 08:45:25 pm
For the leaves, its weird that they grow out of the trunk at the bottom if you just want them to appear like they are on the wall. That sort of infers that they angle backwards or something to attach to the wall and gives a weird picture. Another thing is that they look like they depress into the wall because of how dark you get in the leaves. It seems like they are really, really thick, when they should be pretty thin.
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: cels on April 28, 2014, 10:37:20 pm
Who knew Pixelation was home to botanists in addition to pixel artists  ;D

Thanks for your help, guys. To be honest, the plant was just a minor concern, the major issue is that I have no idea which direction to take with the floor or wall tiles. Shading, texture, reflections, etc, etc. What is good, what is bad? But your feedback in regards to the ivy is much appreciated also.

@questseeker: Maybe I'll have to do different plants. I'm not keen on giving up, but if I already nailed the Ampelopsis, I might as well keep it!  ;D
@Mr. Fahrenheit: I'll get rid of the trunk. I just wanted to make the ivy look really dense, like this (https://davisla.files.wordpress.com/2010/06/ivy-wall.jpg), without just making it flat. But I guess I went too far with the contrast and depth, so it now looks way too fluffy.
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: Mr. Fahrenheit on April 29, 2014, 02:01:19 am
You could probably leave it like it is now that I think of it, if you did like a beveled edge on those tiles so the top and right side were brighter and the bottom and left side were darker showing like an angle towards and away from the light source. That'd probably make it look like it was sticking out then.
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: cels on May 01, 2014, 11:38:50 am
Like this, Fahrenheit?

(http://i.imgur.com/dbdjFL2.png)
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: gtclutch on May 01, 2014, 07:48:02 pm
Wow those are all lovely. I think the problem with the ivy is that it looks like one solid mass. Maybe if you let the wall show through between the leaves in some areas (like around the bottom or close to the outside). Ivy is rarely one thick mass of leaves, there are usually patches and scattered areas of leaves.

Also, and this might be just me, but one thing that keeps bothering me is the pattern on wall in core picture (right where the stone changes color). It looks like soap suds or bubbles and I'm not sure why it's there. That might just be me though.
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: cels on May 03, 2014, 12:30:24 pm
Wow those are all lovely. I think the problem with the ivy is that it looks like one solid mass. Maybe if you let the wall show through between the leaves in some areas (like around the bottom or close to the outside). Ivy is rarely one thick mass of leaves, there are usually patches and scattered areas of leaves.
Also, and this might be just me, but one thing that keeps bothering me is the pattern on wall in core picture (right where the stone changes color). It looks like soap suds or bubbles and I'm not sure why it's there. That might just be me though.

Thank you. I've tried to amend both issues here.  :)

(http://i.imgur.com/u8gS0zF.png)
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: Manupix on May 03, 2014, 06:07:28 pm
I like where this is going; good readability and volume.

Some things don't work so well though.
Everything looks hyper-glossy, thanks to edge highlights and floor reflexion. That's also the case in the first post 3 versions. Are you sure this is what you want?

The outlines / edge shadows don't make much sense. You have 1px-wide highlights on the left side, which are either bevels (should correspond to a 1px-wide shadow on the right) or just sharp edge speculars (no shadow on the right). Wider shadows than highlights aren't physical.
Some parts should cast shadows on others, since light comes from the left: pillars on their bases, left side wall on left side pillar and faraway wall corner.

Perspective and proportions: the floor tiles should constrain the proportions of the other tiles, bricks and pillars: right now, each of these seems to play by their own rules. Mostly a problem in the wall tops: the brick lengths can't be the same for facing and side views.
Similarly, in the first post piece, there are 3 different floor tiles perspectives.

Nitpicks: the door 'rings' were best centered; the brick staggering hints at widely variable thicknesses in the corners, mostly on pillars.
I might prefer the earlier bushes / ivy, provided their colors were closer to the walls so as not too stand out too harshly.

Looking at the palette (http://wouterpleizier.nl/pj/index.php?input=http%3A%2F%2Fi.imgur.com%2FF3ErgBB.png), I find there's many similar looking teals, although I don't really mind that in the piece. Might deserve some tweaking. The doors colors are too different though; a smaller palette might make that less problematic.
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: cels on May 03, 2014, 10:58:46 pm
I like where this is going; good readability and volume.
Thanks, Manupix! Your reply is as helpful as ever!

Some things don't work so well though.
Everything looks hyper-glossy, thanks to edge highlights and floor reflexion. That's also the case in the first post 3 versions. Are you sure this is what you want?
Definitely. I want everything to be so glossy and shiny that it borders on the ridiculous. I've been partially inspired by this (http://i44.tinypic.com/34ngqs3.png) wolfenoctis piece, but I want to take the shinyness even further.

The outlines / edge shadows don't make much sense. You have 1px-wide highlights on the left side, which are either bevels (should correspond to a 1px-wide shadow on the right) or just sharp edge speculars (no shadow on the right). Wider shadows than highlights aren't physical.
Some parts should cast shadows on others, since light comes from the left: pillars on their bases, left side wall on left side pillar and faraway wall corner.
Thank you, I will take a closer look at the edges and shadows. In regards to the shadows, I hadn't even thought about it untill you brought it up. Hmm, thanks! Probably going to help a lot.

Perspective and proportions: the floor tiles should constrain the proportions of the other tiles, bricks and pillars: right now, each of these seems to play by their own rules. Mostly a problem in the wall tops: the brick lengths can't be the same for facing and side views.
Well... at the risk of being a bit obtuse, could you make a suggestion for the wall tops? I'm really not sure how to solve this problem with the 32x32 grid.

Similarly, in the first post piece, there are 3 different floor tiles perspectives.
That's because I was experimenting and didn't really know which way to go. I was just imitating vierbit's tiles (http://www.pixeljoint.com/files/icons/full/dead_end_detail.png) and trying to see if I could learn from them. To be honest, I'm still none the wiser. I know his perspective is sometimes inconsistent on purpose, but I don't understand the way the chooses the floor tile perspective and makes it fit to the surroundings.

Nitpicks: the door 'rings' were best centered; the brick staggering hints at widely variable thicknesses in the corners, mostly on pillars.
Thanks! The bricks are not actually supposed to be bricks, in the sense of solid slabs of rock, as you'd find in a medieval castle. They're more like stone tiles covering a wall. Like marble walls in a palace.

I might prefer the earlier bushes / ivy, provided their colors were closer to the walls so as not too stand out too harshly.
Thanks. I think the first bush looks good, but... it just looks like a bush. Doesn't look like ivy. And I haven't been able to find any good pixel art with this sort of ivy, to learn from. I'll keep experimenting.

Looking at the palette (http://wouterpleizier.nl/pj/index.php?input=http%3A%2F%2Fi.imgur.com%2FF3ErgBB.png), I find there's many similar looking teals, although I don't really mind that in the piece. Might deserve some tweaking. The doors colors are too different though; a smaller palette might make that less problematic.
I'll see if I can get rid of some colours. What do you suggest for the door? I'm rather fond of the white door, because I wanted something to break with the organic theme I've got going everywhere else. In the end, a lot of the walls and pillars are hopefully going to be overgrown with ivy, and it would be nice to have the door(s) clearly visible and separate.
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: Manupix on May 03, 2014, 11:59:12 pm
You're welcome =)

Perspective and proportions: the (square) floor tiles appear half as 'deep' as long (16x32), so any horizontal figure should be shortened by 1/2 in apparent depth. Supposing the wall top bricks upper faces to be 'really' 16x32 px, they should appear 8x32 when facing, and 16x16 from the side. You may probably cheat a few pixels, but for some reason I think consistency should be maintained because of the iso floor tiles, more than on obviously impossible persps like Vierbit's.

What he does defeats understanding! There are several types of strong 'inconsistencies' and I have no idea how he gets away with them XD
First, the strictly top-down floor (in most cases) vs ~45 buildings; most secondary horizontal planes (parallel to the ground) are not strictly top-down (square) though, for instance pillar bases and tops in the top left piece.
Some of the pieces with sideways floor tiles are not strictly top-down either, and he even gets away mixing the 2 types of floors in 2 pieces!
2 other pieces on the 3rd row have 'rolling' perspective, starting from top-down tiles at the bottom and more or less gradually easing into a level view with vanishing point into the distance.
A strategic use of detail is probably key; for instance in the 3rd row, right piece, notice how the tiles are replaced with big swaths of floor and then nothing, leaving the persp transition hard to pinpoint.

Colors: I see the doors as bluish grey, not white. It's more a point of recycling though as those blues appear nowhere else, and none of the wall teals are used in the doors. But white/light grey with teal shading would be nice, I think.
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: cels on May 04, 2014, 09:25:57 am
Hmm, turns out my failure to do the wall tops properly was just a severe case of cerebral flatulence.

Started adding shadows too, though I'm not sure if I'm doing it right.

Changed the hue on the door from a blueish grey to a yellowish grey.

(http://i.imgur.com/sD3fV0P.png)
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: Beetleking22 on May 04, 2014, 07:44:07 pm
This looks nice.. You can get better reflection with Adobe photoshop... You need reflect the wall and then put opacity 25-29%.. Bad thing is.. It adds more unnecessary color but you can always reduce it..


(http://i62.tinypic.com/28gy2oy.png)
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: cels on May 05, 2014, 12:21:47 am
This looks nice.. You can get better reflection with Adobe photoshop... You need reflect the wall and then put opacity 25-29%.. Bad thing is.. It adds more unnecessary color but you can always reduce it..
I was raised catholic, and my priest always used to say Adobe Photoshop is the work of the devil and opacity is what brought Gomorra low. Between you and me, he wasn't thrilled about colour reduction either. But I'll consider your advice and see if I can get past my misgivings towards modern technology.

That being said... I really like what you've done with the walls and you also made me realize I hate the floor I've been using. I will have a look at both in my next post or when I update this one.

Thanks a lot for your help!

(http://i.imgur.com/LnM7FRm.png)
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: Beetleking22 on May 05, 2014, 05:29:28 am
This looks nice.. You can get better reflection with Adobe photoshop... You need reflect the wall and then put opacity 25-29%.. Bad thing is.. It adds more unnecessary color but you can always reduce it..
I was raised catholic, and my priest always used to say Adobe Photoshop is the work of the devil and opacity is what brought Gomorra low. Between you and me, he wasn't thrilled about colour reduction either. But I'll consider your advice and see if I can get past my misgivings towards modern technology.

I understand! Im glad that I helped you..


That being said... I really like what you've done with the walls and you also made me realize I hate the floor I've been using. I will have a look at both in my next post or when I update this one.



Yeah the wall had too strong lightning... I lowered it little bit and you can see there is some dark outlines asswell. Your bricks would look even better with some variety.. 
I would put more cracks and dust in bricks  but of course not everywhere..
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: Manupix on May 05, 2014, 03:26:46 pm
Opacity? Burn the heretics!  :huh:
Anyway simple reflections are good enough, the glossy floor is busy enough as it is ;)
Although you'll have to somehow fix the reflection bottoms (or reflected wall tops), probably staggering them in the doorways.

I was thinking of shadows on the walls more than floors; glossy floors shouldn't have much shadow as reflections would be unaffected but if you do want them they're nicer and more realistic along the iso grid.

The crapton of colors in those walls and tiles make MSPaint edits a pain in the butt, I have to say  :mean: lol
(btw, is there a way to paint-bucket non-adjacent zones in Paint?)

Edit: Thanks, Crow.  :(
Also these wall shadows might be too dark, but you get the idea.


(http://files.myfrogbag.com/qe1mq0/_CELS%20tiles%20edit.png)
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: Crow on May 05, 2014, 04:10:25 pm
(btw, is there a way to paint-bucket non-adjacent zones in Paint?)

Nope. You can use the color replace feature with a big enough brush, though :-X
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: Johasu on May 06, 2014, 08:33:39 pm
(btw, is there a way to paint-bucket non-adjacent zones in Paint?)
I work with GraphicsGale mostly.  Sometimes when I am in a hurry to change all of one color very quickly I set the transparency of the layer to something absurdly out of place like HOT PINK and then use the color selection tool to grab all of the color I want to remove and just ctrl+c.  It turns the entire area of that color to the pink transparency.
Cut the entire image
use a fill to the entire empty image to new color and paste old image over the top.

^ It may not seem very fast from reading it but it takes about 2 seconds on the largest of images that I work on and I can change an entire color arrangement in no time.
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: yaomon17 on May 06, 2014, 08:52:47 pm
You can use Paint.NET too and just use Shift+Click when using bucket to do that (make sure tolerance is low).
Title: Re: My tiles bring all the boys to the yard
Post by: cels on May 08, 2014, 10:55:37 am
@Crow, Johasu, yaomon17: Thanks for bumping the thread.  :)

@Manupix: Those wall shadows do look lovely! But I can't help thinking that they'll make the whole level look like it's contained in a shoe box with external lighting. Of course, the only realistic light sources in a pre-electric setting would be windows, torches or oil lamps, on the walls or in the ceiling. And I don't really want any of those, I think. So maybe I just won't have any shadows on the floor or walls after all.

On the other hand, shadows certainly would help showing some sort of depth, so it's easy to understand whether two areas are side by side, or one is below the other.

(http://i.imgur.com/l6FaVxB.png)
(http://i.imgur.com/AxrpOrl.png)
(http://i.imgur.com/wTydlSI.png)
(http://i.imgur.com/ufFulO5.png)