Critique => Pixel Art => Topic started by: Razz on September 17, 2005, 05:28:18 pm

Title: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Razz on September 17, 2005, 05:28:18 pm
Borrowed some colours from Zach's warewolf for this first one  :P
(http://img138.imageshack.us/img138/9930/itsonlyfair9em.png) (http://img214.imageshack.us/img214/9901/thelightistoomuch7rf.png)
(http://img234.imageshack.us/img234/6143/mylovedoesitgood7by.png) (http://img78.imageshack.us/img78/4755/imdestroyingitformyownreason3f.png)
(http://img78.imageshack.us/img78/3608/andsparksflew1mc.png) (http://img78.imageshack.us/img78/792/whenpainsurroundsiwillcallyouh.png)
(http://img78.imageshack.us/img78/3880/youvebrokenmyheart2te.png) (http://img131.imageshack.us/img131/736/itstheartthatcounts6ic.png)

I might have posted some of these some time ago, I know I did at another board. But they're just random doodles anyway.
(http://img131.imageshack.us/img131/736/itstheartthatcounts6ic.png) is my favourite one.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: garsh on September 17, 2005, 06:31:21 pm
The big one with the starry sky is my favorite. Could you talk a little bit about what's going on in in it? I see some tiny little square guys that look afraid and horrific things seem to be happening to them. One looks to have drowned, another might be getting eaten by the well camoflaged lumps with eyes. I just love the scene and would like to know more about what's going on there.

By the way, in that image with the two simple lines, the word "art" can be seen under them, but on my monitor I can only make it out when I highlight the image. Was that intentional?
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Zach on September 17, 2005, 07:39:16 pm
ditto, i love the starry sky one, that thing is awsome :D
your other stuff is pretty interesting, the one i like the best out of them is the heart one, looks like a design for a shirt or something :D
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Darien on September 17, 2005, 07:45:54 pm
I love these.  The big one is also my favorite.  These are quite simple, yet they still show strong pixel technique.  Good job.

And someone save the drowning one!    :'(
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Razz on September 17, 2005, 08:28:25 pm
Haha, thanks all. I appreciate it.
And I was joking about the "art" one being my favourite. =P I don't think it even classifies as art.
About the big one, there really isn't anything to explain. I just kinda drew what was coming to my mind at the time and ended up with that. I named it "It Doesn't Matter Where You've Been Before On A Night Like This," if that helps any, haha.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: garsh on September 17, 2005, 10:34:28 pm
Was I right, though, about that one little dude getting eaten alive in the vertical shaft?

By the way, dark colors are supposed to look recessive, right? So shouldn't your cave area be darker than the solid earth surrounding it? As it is, the cavernous areas kind of "pop out" and I think you have to look at it with a deliberate sense of reason to realize what it is. I think if you just glance at it, you don't intuitively know it's a cave.

It just looks generally nice like it is, though, so maybe I'm completely off base.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Xion on September 19, 2005, 03:38:07 am
The first eight look like they might fit into a warioware type game. of them, the 2nd and 6th are my favorite.

The last, big one, though is a masterpiece; beautiful in it's simplicity. Is that a cross in the sky? I 'specially like the star cluster in the corner. This would make for an awesome short platform-adventure game.

Nice with 'em all.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Razz on September 19, 2005, 05:14:16 am
garsh: You are right, and you are right. Thus this:
Does it look better?

Xion Knight: Heheh, thanks man. Yeah, it would be cool to make it into some sorta game.
And yes, it's a cross in the sky.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: LuciferianSoul on September 19, 2005, 02:31:34 pm
Nifty pixel doodles, I think they're sweet. Love that picture posted above, it looks great.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Helm on September 19, 2005, 03:15:44 pm
dither the darker sky shade with patterns into the next brighter one. I adore this scene, it makes me feel things. Plus I want to play the game ( which you're obliged to make ) now.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Sawtooth on September 19, 2005, 03:54:11 pm
I'll repeat the notion that this last piece is awesome.  It's well colored and composed.  Minimal beauty, I guess.  Seiklus (http://autofish.net/clysm/games/seiklus/), anyone?
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Helm on September 19, 2005, 05:36:52 pm
yes, only seiklus isn't pretty.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Razz on September 19, 2005, 06:51:10 pm
Wow guys, really, thanks for the comments. ;D
Helm: It's not necessarily "dithered," it's more of a scribbling, but it seems to blend them nice anyway. And I kinda like the feel of it.

EDIT: I would love to make a game with this, but I lack two things:
-Programming knowledge.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: garsh on September 19, 2005, 08:26:51 pm
I'm forced to admit: when I'm right I'm right.

I compared the before and after, swapping back anf forth between two different other windows, and not only does the darker cave look more recessive, it also looks "better". The darker color off-sets the large area of lighter green which evens out the whole composition's balance between the dark sky and the lighter ground. That's more pleasing to the eye, I think.

It gives me ideas for a game...

I can see those blocky little dudes coming ashore from that lake, (except that one who didn't make it, obviously) and then trying not to fall in those holes as they make their way in-land. It's made all the more difficult by the craggy cliff that juts out under the tree. Trying to jump up there just results in them sliding down dangerously close to the holes. Maybe they teamed up to get that little red fellow passed the cliff, but he was the only one they could manage. The others tried, but two fell in the holes, while the last one was left alone and hopeless, so he joined his friends under the ground. Ironically, he was the first to be eaten. But after their brave sacrifice, how far will their little red friend be able to make it in this strange and inhospitable land? Not much farther than the first tree he finds himself crowded by more strange ceatures. His luck might have run out, unless they don't mean to harm him after all... If not, they might be his only hope in getting over that tall standing stone on the hill. What could be on the other side?
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Helm on September 19, 2005, 08:51:29 pm
there's also a cute one that drowned. The sea people have taken his soul back to the great father

I agree on the caves being darker as being better. I still say lose the random scribbling and mix properly. It's pixel art, every pixel should specifically be placed. It looks ok at 1x zoom but not any closer.

And about programming: get Game Maker. It's easy

about commitment: no idea
Title: scribble-dithering
Post by: garsh on September 19, 2005, 11:21:18 pm
^ I had to save a copy of the image and intensely adjust the contrast to see what you were getting at, Helm. I'm inclined to agree; fine at low res, a bit sloppy when magnified.

The thing is, though, even a seemingly sloppy "dither" can look really great if it's done with a certain consistency. The best example of a well done "messy" or "scribbly" dither style (especially in the interest of low color) is Yoshi's Island for SNES. You can look at just about any screen capture and it's filled with scrawling not disimilar to the heavy handed smudge of a toddler with his first jumbo Crayola. Despite that, the visuals copiously ooze beauty and artistic flair. Emulation of a style like that would benefit anybody going for casual looking pixel placement with a professional edge, I think.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Razz on September 20, 2005, 12:40:13 am
Well, I fixed up the scribbles a bit and I also attempted to dither a bit, and these are the results:
I didn't finish the dithering because I really suck at it and it wasn't turning out well anyway. I might do more work on it, probably depending on the feedback or other circumstances.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: garsh on September 20, 2005, 01:44:22 am
^ It's well done dithering so far, but to tell you the truth, I like your scribbles better. The "real" dithering looks almost like you have one of those "puffy" stickers overlapping the image -- the edges seem to look like a subtle "bulge".

If you're looking for feedback to decide whether or not to finish the dithering as you started it there, I officially vote thumbs-down.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: PixelPusher on September 20, 2005, 04:00:30 am
Wow! I love that last piece. I tried to pixel in the same style and mine looks like crap. Anyways, I was going to agree with the scribbling until I saw the dithering, which looks much, much better IMO. I fully agree that this would make a great game(I was thinking a click adventure like Loom, personally).
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Razz on September 20, 2005, 04:11:59 am
I think the scribbles are also more consistent with the outburst in the top, right corner too. And I just like the stylistic choice for the background. I should do more little "mock up" type things.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: lief on September 20, 2005, 05:49:22 am
part of the problem with the new version is the usage of the dithering.  when you dither two colors together, they are perceived as a third color.  you have not treated this dithering as a third color, and have just used it to blend two strips of color together quickly.  to get maximum effect you need to broaden the 50% dither as if it were a new color, and then use finer dithering to blend the transitions at either end (in effect creating new colors to soften the transition).  what you have done, in effect, is used the dither as a buffer between the two.

to refine helms statement, there is nothing wrong with the 'scribble' style for pixel art.  just make sure it ain't random ;)
you will always get a better result if you decide where the pixels will go.  takes longer, but thats the price we pay...

i love the rocks too... such a minor part of the picture, and they are so beautifully treated.  oh yea, and that red needs to be tweaked... or make it a glowing red or SOMETHING.  its up there with full RGB green and magenta at the moment in eyeball burning...
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: LuciferianSoul on September 20, 2005, 08:24:21 am
That's a perfect point lief, I was thinking the same thing about the dithering.
Of course, dithering would take alot of practise to get good at, I'm still very bad at dithering and I'm yet to learn to utilize it well enough.

I also agree the red is way too saturated.
Title: Re: Buncha Stuff.
Post by: Xion on September 21, 2005, 01:52:27 am
Completely agreed with lief.

Art related;
I think it would be nice if you added a tad more detail to what you already have, but not so much that it detracts from the style. Like some bones sparsely placed throughout the ground, or a cloud or two more in the sky above Mr. Red to make the sky more consistent, because right now it looks like the sky goes from crystal clear to densely dotted with clouds.
I also agree that the red guy is a bit too red. Perhaps a little downtoning the brightness...?
Lastly, perhaps it's just me, but that pixel-thin twig in the tree is...odd...

Not art related;
For a game, I picture this being like Lenny Loosejocks in Space (http://www.ezone.com/games/space/), but without infinite lives or health, and controlled with the keyboard. There'd also be some battles akin to Megaman, Mario, or Sonic, but only maybe one to four. Just a short game. The animations would be fluid and pretty, with many small details such as the stars sparkling in the sky, those little creepy shadow guys popping up/hiding and blinking, and the water havin' a nice anim to it. Mostly, it'd be based on simple puzzles, item collectage, and reflexes. Controls would be walk/run, jump/climb, pick up/use/push, and shoot. The shot would be just a short ranged stun gun, used more strategically than run 'n gunnerly.
Maybe the innocent looking critters could be pixels, and as you go along, you gain appendages and stuff - going from a simple square to an armed, bipedal redman. Your task could be to lead the blue innocents to a safer land while keeping as many as possible. They'd have six simple commands; Stay all, Follow all, Attack all (select target), Attack single (Ditto), Follow single (The nearest will come while all others stay put), and Stay single (yup). But, of course, there would be places that only you could go and then open a passage for them to come to you through or make a bridge or something similar.

Man, I wish you could program.